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Monday, February 29, 2016

An Extra Upper Body Workout!

It's leap day so make sure that you take advantage of this extra 24 hours and get one more workout in than last year! Matt made this upper body routine to hit all parts of your arms and shoulders, so find a weight that is challenging and knock out three rounds! I admit that these four pound weights were too light for me, so next time I do this routine I'll grab some bigger weights.

Have fun and make the most of the 29th!! 

Love you lots, 

Friday, February 26, 2016

Tales From The Back Row By Amy Odell

*Psst* Click the picture to find a copy

The first thought that came to my mind when I started reading this book was: I'm jealous! 

Being in any chair at fashion week, or working with a fashion magazine or in the fashion industry in general is something that I would sell a kidney to do. I know, I know, "Well, then Evin why aren't you doing that?" Rest assured my dear friends, I am currently working on it and finding a way to turn things in that direction. (Part of that process was starting this blog! It basically opened my eyes to what I'm most passionate about! SO stay tuned. Life changes take some time.) :) Realizing that is also why I picked up this book, #GirlBoss, and a few more to come!

But enough about me, back to the book! Amy Odell is amazing! She, like me, is from Texas and went to college to get a journalism degree (another thing we have in common). And since then, Odell has been basically killing it in the online fashion world. She makes her jobs seem a lot less fabulous in many of the essays, but I think that's just so it doesn't seem like bragging. There was an underlying message of "I love my job!" that was hard to miss and just makes you smile! She's worked for New York Magazine, Buzzfeed and Cosmo covering fashion events, parties full of famous people and she's even been interviewed by the queen of fashion: Anna Wintour (one of my favorite essays in the book)! 

Odell has worked her ass off to get where she is, so she quickly earned my respect, admiration and (as stated above) a little bit of jealousy – but mostly the first two. I wasn't terribly interested in the party-going and mingling with celebs (hello, introvert), which does make up a big part of this book, but the fashion soirées, the sample sales, the trips to NYFW and meeting Karl Lagerfeld kept me up reading this book way past my usual bedtime!

Basically, if you're interested in the inner workings of the fashion industry, especially the journalism and blogging side, I would definitely recommend Tales from the Back Row. It's a gem that I'm so happy I now have on my shelf. Plus, there's a list in the back that made me want to jumpstart a few of my fashion-related dreams. As an added bonus, the hardback version is currently cheaper than the paperback at B&N, so why not give it a chance and save a buck!

Love you lots, 

Thursday, February 25, 2016

10 Bookish Goals for 2016

I've never made a list of what I plan to read before, but this seemed like a compelling idea. I usually just grab whatever seems interesting at the time or the "it" book of the moment. I also tend to just buy the new releases in my favorite series. However, I have so much on my "to read" list and with a 30 book goal by the end of the year I am hoping adding a few "subgoals" will help me along the way! 

I love to read and I love sharing with you guys what I'm reading. (Check out my last two reviews here and here) I just finished Amy Odell's book and started The Bronze Horseman, so I am well on my way to reaching a few of these already! 

I'd love to hear what are you reading this year! Leave me some recommendations! 

Love you lots, 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Blue Florals

Blue Floral Top || Levi Jeans (on sale!) || Similar bag (& here) ||

It's only February, but I think the spring showers are here a little early! It's been raining so much and the temperatures are rising and I am so ready for spring fashion!!! Anyone with me? 

I am so in love with this blue floral top! It looks great with jeans and I can't wait to see how it pairs with denim cutoffs or tucked into a high-waisted skirt! After I took these pictures I threw on a leather jacket to stay dry in the rain and I loved it! The blue flowers are really delicate and I love that while still a spring-y floral print, it's not crazy overwhelming. I can wear it with so much!

I'm also pretty certain there isn't a spring transition piece than a peep toe bootie! You get to show off your new pedicure, but it's way more acceptable than sandals (save those until Easter). I bought these a few seasons ago and except for the super cold winter days, I've been able to wear them all year. 

Also, I want to give a huge thank you to Chloé for bringing back the saddle bag! I grabbed this one in Dallas at H&M years ago! I loved the southwestern vibe and the tassel. Plus it's real leather (not the usual at H&M)! However, I put it away for awhile, but now it's back at the front of my closet! 

Love you lots,

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Runway to Closet!

Spring fashion is so close I can almost feel it! I can't wait until my closet is less full of sweaters and overflowing with cute tanks and sundresses! I've been saving pictures from a few of the hottest trends that premiered last fall at NYFW just dreaming of warm weather and sunshine. Now that all the stores are clearing out their wool coats and boots and displaying their new spring arrivals you can start to stock up on this seasons best looks!

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Which Spring/Summer trend are you most excited to wear? 

Lots of love, 

Guest Post: Adam Kings' Spring Picks!

As the weather starts to transition into spring I can’t help but get excited to shop. It seems like every year spring rolls around I fully embrace the saying “out with the old and in with the new.” Here are some of my top picks for my 2016 spring wardrobe.

As some shy away from horizontal stripes, I run towards them! I love this striped dress from H&M because it is so versatile and can be styled in a bunch of different ways! 

Now, while the dress is at a great price, these Stella McCartney sunglasses are a bit more pricey but I have a bit of a sunglasses obsession. As many of you know, Pantone announced Rose Quartz as the 2016 color of the year and ever since I’ve seen the pale pink color all over. These glasses are a great way to incorporate the color of the year into your wardrobe! 

Spring showers are coming and on the days you need to turn in your sunglasses for an umbrella, it’s great to have something that is fun and flirty to take away from the dreary weather. This umbrella was designed by the Felix Rey co-founders, Lily Rafii Band and Salaika Zarrouk. You might know Lily as wife of business consultant Doug Band, who may be the inspiration for this flirty line!  

With an adorable umbrella, you need just as cute rain boots. I love the short hunter boots and the pale blue color is perfect for spring. 

So I will admit, I have about 10 different travel mugs. I know it’s crazy; I have a bit of a mug problem! Every morning I pick out my travel mug to fit my mood and/or outfit. This mug from Starbucks is great for those mornings when spring blooms are in the air!

Follow Adam on Pinterest!! 

Monday, February 22, 2016

Time for Cardio!!

I love cardio, but don't always want to go to the gym and run on the treadmill. Plus, it's way too cold to wake up and run in the mornings, so my cardio has consisted of spin classes and playing basketball. This easy cardio workout is one that you can do at the end of the day and without going to the gym! You'll work up a sweat and feel great!

I'm a big fan of finishing my day with a good cardio workout because it relieves stress! 

Happy Monday!!! 

Love you lots, 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Boutique Haul: Norman, OK!!

I did some shopping on my trip last weekend and as promised in Thursday's post I filmed it all,  edited it and voila! here you go! I love boutique shopping because you can find the best unique pieces! I managed to find a few exact matches, but also linked a few similar items!

I am proud to say that I've already worn a lot of what I bought! Norman, OK has some really cute stores that I shopped at all the time when I was in college. So I love going back and seeing what they have when I visit! And boy did I do just that!

Let me know what piece is your favorite! 

Love you lots, 

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Spring Splurge or Save!

I think we are all ready for spring and there are some amazing trends out there! But unless you're spending limit is completely unlimited (and if it is I'm totally jealous) you have to pick an choose what to splurge on and what trends to get for cheap. I've scoured the Internet and found cheaper alternatives for all of my designer favorites! 

I'm in love with espadrilles this season and while Tory Burch came out with a lace pair, Soludos makes great shoes in an almost identical style! Also, I'm obsessed with saddlebags and have been for awhile, but there's no way I am dropping this month's rent on a handbag. The Vince Camuto one isn't necessarily a steal, but when you're saving over $1500 your fashion dreams are a lot closer to reality!

What other trends are you loving? Send me a picture and I'll do my best to find a cheaper look alike! 

Love you lots,

Thursday, February 18, 2016

February PopSugar Must Have!!!

I haven't done a PopSugar unboxing for quite some time, but I got the February one in the mail and I felt like it was time to do another one! Plus, I always love the February box because it's Valentine's themed!! I also recently ordered the Resort box and I cannot wait to see what they surprise us with! 

If you want to try out PopSugar (and I definitely recommend it) they have a coupon code for $5 off your first box! Use 'MARCH5' when you check out! It's not a huge savings, but now you can get your box and grab a Starbuck's Latte, too! 

Love you lots, 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Likeness by Tana French

*Psst* Click the picture to find a copy

I sped through In The Woods and immediately had to pick up the next book in Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad series! It took a while to read this one, but not because it was bad. I just never had time to read. In fact, despite being so busy, the book was so good that it's all I wanted to do!! #bookishproblems

I'd heard all over the Internet that The Likeness was even better than In The Woods. So since that's something you rarely hear about an author's second novel in a series, I was intrigued. And after finishing the book I have to agree! I loved the plot, I loved the characters and just like the first one I loved Tana French's style of writing. The story is told as if the main character is rehashing the events to you directly. It's an interesting storytelling strategy that you often forget is even happening until you get to a line that pulls you back from the story. Something like, "I should have known then," or , "looking back that should have been when I knew," etc. It makes you think about what clue you just missed or what character trait you just observed will circle back later and help solve the mystery. I would love to see Tana's story boards! Talk about a complex web!

In this book, Cassie Maddox has left the Murder Squad, but that doesn't stop her from getting called to a new murder scene. When she arrives she finds a young woman who looks very much like her and quickly finds out that she was using a false name. The name she's going by is one that Cassie invented herself years ago while working an undercover case. All the evidence has been washed away my the rain and there are no real suspects because no one knows who this woman really is. Instead of going about solving the murder through the usual channels, Cassie and the murder squad decide to embed her in the victim's life to gather inside information. Cassie quickly transforms into Lexie Madison, a character she'd long left behind, and gets to work to catch this mystery woman's killer and try to find out who she really was.

I think one of the underlying reasons that I liked this book so much was that it's written Cassie's perspective. Maddox was introduced in the first book as the main character's partner and I loved her character then so I was thrilled to read a book all about her. I know that I prefer reading stories from female perspectives, so that could be why I liked this story more, but I also think that the plot line and really fresh take on a mystery novel drew me into this story faster than the first. In fact, I'm a little sad that the whole series isn't written from Cassie's POV!

The Likeness could be a standalone novel if you're not at all interested in the first, but I urge you to read both and read them in order. French's characters have so much depth that being able to pull from the first book really helps you understand the motivations of the characters as you go. 

The next book in the series is from Frank Mackey's POV. I probably will wait to read this one for a bit and work through the other books piling up on my shelf. (Amy Odell's Tales From the Back Row will be up next week!) However, there is no way that I'm not going to buy it and read it! I am too wrapped up in French's complex world and beautiful (sometimes poetic) writing to not read them all! 

Happy reading!

Love you lots,

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Travel Tips!

I LOVE to travel, but I hate everything about airports. If you follow me on Instagram or on Twitter you'll know that over the weekend every travelers nightmare happened. My flight was cancelled and there weren't any other flights going out that day. Some people handle these situations with ease, a shrug of the shoulders and they're off to pick up their hotel vouchers. I am not one of these people. I wanted so badly to stay on schedule and make it to my destination that the thought of waiting overnight (and not getting my bag back until the next day) was terrible. Yes, I'm tightly wound and as much as I wanted to be carefree about the whole situation that's just not who I am. 

So after the flight cancellation, a night in an airport hotel and a 5:30 AM shuttle ride back to the airport my new 7:00 flight was delayed for three hours. That's when the calm washed over me. There was nothing I could do, but sit and wait. It could have been that I was totally exhausted and didn't have the energy to care or it could have been that at that point I wasn't surprised, either way I came up with a list to share with you about how to survive any travel nightmare.

1. Be smart about packing!

If you're prepared to lose your luggage, have a cancelled flight or whatever the airlines throw your way it won't be as soul-crushing when it actually happens. I used to always pack my makeup and toothbrush in my carry-on, but after quite a few hiccup-free flights, I got more comfortable with throwing it all in my suitcase and picking it up in baggage claim.

 So that's what I did and then I found out it would take 4 hours to get my bag back after we landed. I decided to leave it at the airport and make a Target run instead. However, from now on my carry-on packing list will look like this: Toothbrush/Toothpaste, extra shirt, clean undies, makeup (only the essentials), makeup wipes, deodorant, phone charger, and all my jewelry (something I already did, but it's a good reminder). This trip I remembered to pack my jewelry and makeup wipes, but everything else was somewhere in my little green suitcase in the belly of the Denver airport. Never again. If I have to leave a magazine or two out to fit it all, so be it!

2. Prepare for a Target run.

Once we received our hotel vouchers and $20 worth of food voucher each, we got the shuttle to our airport hotel. It took maybe two minutes before I was on GoogleMaps searching out the nearest Target. There was no way I was wearing the exact same outfit, undies and all, the next day. I was fine with re-wearing my jeans and cardigan, but a clean shirt was more than necessary. If you follow the packing list above, you'll be able to avoid this whole step and save the money not only on your Target purchases, but also on the Uber ride it takes to get there and back. 

United airlines did provide us with an overnight kit that had the necessities like a toothbrush and deodorant wipes and the hotel had soap, shampoo, conditioner, so that saved some money. I don't recommend using the provided tooth paste though, I've never tasted something quite that bad. 

So off to Target we went, I picked out two T's (one to sleep in), a pair of undies, under-eye concealer and mascara. The makeup wasn't necessary, but I was going to need to buy new soon anyway, so I just took care of it then. Plus, I was going to be exhausted the next morning and if a little concealer and mascara was going to make me feel better (it did) then it was totally worth the $10.

3. Treat yourself.

You've been put into a shitty situation. You're stuck in an airport, you had to buy pajamas, and you brushed your teeth with some really nasty toothpaste. So I promise you deserve to pamper yourself with whatever you can. I stopped by the Barnes and Noble next to the Target and picked up a new book to read because after all the extra time in the airport I finished mine earlier than expected. Plus, the airline gives you $20 of food vouchers to use in the airport. So don't think about the calories and eat a decadent breakfast (i.e. Cinnabon) and drown yourself in lattes. You're not paying and you'll need the caffeine by the time this is all over.

4. Wear something comfortable.

This might go as a given, but I am not the kind of person to wear pajamas on a plane, so I need to be reminded of this often. Sitting and waiting around an airport in a dress and heels would have made this situation sooo much worse. I was so glad that I chose to wear my favorite black jeans the day before. They're by Joe's and seriously feel like leggings!! Then instead of a huge cumbersome jacket, I just grabbed my favorite Banana Republic cardigan. I was also so glad that I wore neutrals because the $10 T-shirt I picked up from Target looked great. There wasn't any outfit coordinating necessary. So wear something comfy, but maybe still leave the pajamas in your suitcase.

Hope your travels are less bumpy than mine! But, if they are I hope this helps!

Love you lots, 

Monday, February 15, 2016

Monday with Matt: Thigh Burner Workout!

I've been pretty self conscious about my inner thighs for a long time. It's a place that I hold weight and I know that that's really common for a lot of people. That said I never turn down a good leg day! I hate lifting weights and despise upper body workouts, but plan a good lower body circuit and I couldn't be happier! It just makes me feel like I'm working on a goal! 

So in an attempt to get ready for the warm summer months and all the shorts that I can't wait to wear, I've really increased the amount of lower body exercise that I've been doing. I can't wait until the mornings warm up so I can start running again! I am too much of a sissy to run if it's chilly!

We'll be doing a killer cardio circuit next week, so check back for that!

Love you lots,

Friday, February 12, 2016

Valentine's Day Makeup!

I am currently planning my Valentine's Day look! I am completely unsure about what I want to wear, but I know two things for sure: Shoes and Makeup. As I said to a friend last night, I've got it all figured out... except for the top part. Maybe I'll find a cute dress or top this weekend!

As for makeup, I love a really feminine, pretty look for Valentine's Day! Pink blush and a pretty pink lip, and some really dramatic eyelashes! I know a lot of people might want a sexier, smoky eye and a siren red lip, but I love this subdued look. I look crazy with a smokey eye, so I'll leave the wow factor up to my outfit!

I must admit that I wear a lot of drugstore makeup. My foundation, concealer, under eye cream and powder are all Clinique, but the fun stuff (eye shadow, lip color, blush, bronzer) is made up of a bunch of drugstore impulse buys. Anytime I'm at Target or Walgreens I always look around for something new and fun! 

However, over the last few months I have been lusting after a few pricier makeup items. I am in love with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush! It's been saved to my Nordstrom wish list for a while! Not only is the product itself beautiful, but the color looks amazing on! And Ellie Goulding's lip colors for MAC are the perfect shades of light pink/coral, plus they are limited edition so you better act fast! (Also, this Smashbox brush set is on sale for under $50!!)

Are you going for a smoky eye look this weekend or are you planning to play up the pinks like me? 

Happy Valentine's Day to all my Valentines!

Love you lots, 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

DIY: Dollar Store Valentine's Gifts!

It's almost Valentine's Day and I created a few SUPER CHEAP, SUPER EASY and SUPER QUICK gifts that you can make for your someone special!! Don't get me wrong, I love the craft store and once I am in Michael's it's tough to find my way out with out spending a ton of money, but I've come to realize that you can get a lot of the same stuff for no more than $1.00!

The best thing about this is that I only spent $10 total for all of these! AND it would have been under $5 if you only count the stuff in this video! I did buy a foam board to use to protect the table!

Let me know which one is your favorite!! And I would love to see if you recreate any of these!

Love you lots, 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

A 'Love'ly Surprise Cake!!

I am all about a good homemade present for Valentine's Day! Whether it's a DIY crafted project (check tomorrow's post!), a dozen (or 20) cupcakes, or this amazing surprise cake I am sure whoever you're gifting to will feel the love in all of your hard work! 

When I drew these mini cakes in my journal I had so many ideas of what to call them, the "Overflowing Love Cake", the "Love is a Surprise" cake, etc. Call it whatever you want because with a little effort everyone is going to think you deserve to be on The Great British Bake Off! Just leave out the part about starting with a box of cake mix...

What you'll need:

For the Cake:
1 Box of Red Velvet Cake Mix 
(make it from scratch if you have the time)
1 cup of water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs

For the icing: 
1/2 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar 
1 teaspoon vanilla 
2 Tablespoons milk

And Valentine's M&M's to decorate!

Also a cookie sheet lined with foil
A set of heart cookie cutters in multiple sizes

Make your Red Velvet cake according to the back of the box. And mix until there aren't any lumps in the batter. I chose to use a box because of the amount of time decorating these takes, but like I said above if you want to make it from scratch more power to you! 

Use a non-stick cooking spray on the foil. Don't forget this step or your life will be super complicated after the cake is done baking. 

Pour your batter into the cookie sheet and use a spatula to smooth it out. You want the single layer to be as even all the way across as possible. (Don't use your fingers unless you want to stain them!)

Bake on 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the middle clean.

While the cake is baking, start on your icing!
 Slice your room temperature (softened) butter into smaller pieces. This helps it from turning into a butter blob in the mixer!

Combine all the icing ingredients until it's smooth and fluffy. All of the powdered sugar should be fully incorporated. It helps to use a rubber spatula and scrape the sides of the bowl.

Let your cake cool completely!!! Once it's cooled down unfold the foil from the edge and use it to slide the cake out of the pan onto a flat surface (like a cutting board). 

Pick two cookie cutters a large and a small. The large cutter will be the size of your mini cake and the small one should fit inside the other leaving about 1/2 inch. Cut out three large hearts.

Then use the smaller cutter to cut the middle out of one of the three. You can save and ice the middles to make bite-sized treats that match your bigger surprise cakes.

To decorate: Pick two tips for your piping bags. I used a small plain tip and a fluted larger tip. Put a small amount of icing into the piping bag with the small tip and then fill the larger tipped piping bag with all the remaining icing!

 Using the smaller piping tip, pipe the edges of one of your large hearts.

Take the heart with the middle cut out and place it on top of the icing. This will create a little cake bowl for you to fill with your surprise treat!

Put as many M&M's as you like into the bowl. The more you add the better the effect will be when someone cuts into the cake! Once cut they will all tumble out onto the plate! Surprise!

Pipe another line of icing around the top and and place your last heart to cover the candy filling!

You can decorate however you want! I piped little flowers all over one for those people who love a lot of icing, but I also really like the naked cake trend that's popping up in bakeries and all over Pinterest so for the other two, I went pretty simplistic and just added a pretty outline to the top. Plus, the person I'm gifting these to isn't crazy about too much icing. 

And there you have it! A yummy and pretty Valentine's treat to share!!

Let me know if you make these for someone this weekend! I'd love to see your creations! 

Love you lots,