Pre-Easter Prep

Pre-Easter Prep

Good Morning and Happy (Good) Friday, everyone!

I’m not a particularly religious person. My family, rooted in Catholicism since way back when- have grown considerably more lax in our religious beliefs than say, my grandparents or my great-grandparents were in their day. While Easter was all about God and Jesus and uncomfortable, overly-starched frilly dresses or suits for my parents when they were little- they’ve thankfully raised my brothers and I to just make it all about food, fun, and being with family.

A holiday I can get behind, really!

This weekend- which will be spent at my mother’s house- is going to be a bit chaotic, to say the least. In-between all the cooking, cleaning, and decorating- I’m also taking on the responsibility of picking up and bringing back family members who reside way up North in Vermont- more than a few hours away. I don’t mind, since it’s a lovely drive and Spring has sprung and all- but it’ll take place in-between my gig at Indie617 on Saturday and work obligations on Monday.

Needless to say I’m going to need one serious power nap come Monday afternoon/evening- but I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. For now, I’m just excited to see my family again before my big move next month! It’s going to be a bit time consuming and hectic around that time- so I’m looking forward to the calm before the storm where I can eat, drink, laugh and catch up with cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.

I’ve got some fun photos, re-caps, and my “Monthly Favorites” to share next week when I return to Blondie Birdie bright and early post-holiday on Monday morning- but I’ve got some handy links for those of you who are still getting your Easter breakfasts/brunches/dinners together that I hope will help!

That just about does it for me this week. I’ve got to get going at work and get ready for some plans I have later on today/tonight out in Western Massachusetts.

I hope you all have a fun, safe, candy-filled Easter! I’ll see you all again on Monday!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Lovely Lace

OOTD: Lovely Lace

Good Morning and Happy Wednesday, everyone!

With warmer days coming- and more importantly, staying- I think it’s safe to say Spring is finally here! I’ve slowly but surely been leaving my heavy wool coat at home in the mornings when I leave for work- and instead reach for a cardigan that comes off by the time 2 p.m. rolls around the the temperatures are soaring for a few hours.

I’m ecstatic, as Spring of course means it won’t be too long until Summer is here again and I can start wearing shorts and head to the beach more often!

But for now, as to not rush things- I’ve been enjoying wearing some of the more colorful, feminine fabrics and finds in my closet. This vintage lace dress I had picked up years ago at a thrift store outside the city for a garden party I was attending in New York one weekend is a long-time favorite of mine. It’s lightweight, frilly, comfortable, and easy to pair with pretty much anything.

When I wore this the other day to work and then immediately to a post-office dinner, I paired it with thin black leggings and black lace ballet flats- because it is still April, after all- and going bare-legged after 6 p.m. in New England in Spring is either hit or miss. You either end up fine, or shivering uncontrollably. The leggings seemed like a good preventative choice- just in case.

But apart from how fun, classic and comfortable the cut and the loose fit of dress is- it’s the lace and crochet work that just screams “Spring!” to me.

Here’s a couple of closeups of the detailing along the skirt and the sleeves:

And even though I wasn’t at Coachella this year- I feel like this would be a great festival ensemble, as well. Boston Calling isn’t that far away, though- so maybe I’ll break this out again in a few weeks to wear while I’m dancing/singing along to some of my favorite artists on the lineup!

Later on this week I’ve got some pre-Easter prep to share before we break for the weekend and the holiday and I head up to Vermont to retrieve some of my family members who will be joining the festivities. Until then, though- I’ve got plenty to do at my office today and some much-needed sleep to catch up on tonight!

See you all on Friday, everyone! Enjoy your “Hump Day!”

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Blossoms and Bell Sleeves

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

While I prepare for the launch of my radio show this weekend and line up my planned posts for next week as we get ready to wrap up the month of March (how?!)– I haven’t forgotten to keep things bright, cheery and as “Spring-y” as possible with my current wardrobe and accessory choices- even when the temperatures have occasionally dipped back into the more frigid digits these past couple of days.

Earlier this week I looked to an old favorite top I had picked up years ago while vacationing in Southern California to give me some much-needed color when the sky and the world around me was looking particularly gray as Winter continues to keep it’s tight stranglehold on us here in New England.

I can’t remember exactly which store in San Diego I had purchased this breezy, bell-sleeved floral half-shirt- only that I was wearing it out for a date and paired it with skinny jeans and a tank top underneath it. I still wear it that way to this day- opting for a glittery and dusty rose colored tank this time- although this most recent wear was for work and not for a date purposes.

Not pictured are the dusty rose kitten heels I wore with this shirt to give myself a little bit of height and my feet a break from boots for a day! I simply cannot wait any longer to break out my flats and my sneakers again!

And, side note- I love the small and unexpected details with this top- particularly the crochet neckline. It makes what is already a cute top feel a bit more elegant and appropriate to wear to more “dressier” events. I would just swap the skinny jeans for an equally breezy skirt, instead!

Next week on ‘Blondie Birdie’ I’ve got some more photos from recent travel, a pretty incredible French Toast recipe- and my favorites from this past month (and there’s a couple of interesting things that made the list, for sure!)

But until then- here’s wishing you all a wonderful, warm and safe weekend. Be sure to tune into Indie617 tomorrow from 12-4 PM (EST) to catch my show!

See you all on Monday!

xx

– Ashley –

Pastel Pinstripes…

Good Morning and Happy Wednesday, everyone!

It has been such a busy week so far- and it doesn’t look like it’s going to be calming down anytime soon! Between work, writing, a scheduled theater company meeting a little later on this afternoon and prepping for some radio work tomorrow evening- I’ve been going non-stop while simultaneously getting over a 24 hour stomach bug that swept through my office like wildfire earlier this week.

And despite feeling pretty awful on Monday- I did still manage to put together a cute outfit that added some much-needed color and brightness to my pale, cold and clammy skin while I was recovering and trying to get things done at the same time.

The first day of Spring might be a week away- but I’m pretty much forcing an early arrival by wearing pastels and anything floral as often as I can. My most recent attempt to summon the warmer weather (and it seems to be working, by the way!) was this pastel-striped blouse that ties in the front with a pair of skinny jeans and a larger-than-life pink flower necklace.

The blouse itself is revealing if you don’t wear anything underneath it- and seeing how this was what I wore to my office (while I was ill…) I opted to keep a basic white tank top under it to keep it work-appropriate- but I like that I can definitely play around with different colored tops under it, too- since there’s so many pastel hues I can match/coordinate it with!

And the necklace, while bold and fun- is admittedly a bit heavy- but you get used to it after a few minutes and from there you can barely notice it while you have it on!

I’m looking forward to wearing this outfit with one of my gauze or linen midi skirts and some sandals once the last of the snow finally melts- which I know won’t be for a little while longer- but it’s fun to plan those late Spring/early Summer outfits ahead of time.

I’m off to get some work done before I head out to the Pioneer Valley to continue efforts with one of my favorite side projects and meet up with some friends in the area. I’ll be back this coming Friday with some tips/tricks for Spring cleaning (and with a few updates on blog maintenance I’ve been performing!)

Here’s wishing you all a lovely “Hump Day.” Enjoy it! We’re so close to the weekend!

xx

– Ashley –

Favorites: February 2019!

Good Morning and Happy Tuesday, everyone!

It’s a short posting week for me- both because of how busy my schedule is over the next couple of days and also because of the way the last day of the month and the first day of March falls. Before I jump into Daylight Savings Time, Saint Patrick’s Day, and the beginning of Spring- I wanted to share a few of my favorite things from February- including some skin care, makeup, and a book I have not been able to put down since I started reading it about a week or so ago!

My full re-cap of the month will be up on Thursday- but until then- here’s my Favorites from February 2019!

And, as usual- the other odds and ends that I couldn’t quite capture with a camera will follow the photos and details below.

Every few months, when I’m running low on body wash and lotions- I like to stop by Bath & Body Works to take advantage of their “Buy 3/Get 3 Free” sales (such a good deal!) and stock up. With Winter winding down and my bottles and containers of pumpkin and mint-scented body care nearly empty- I’ve got Spring and floral scents on my mind.

To leap into a new season and a new fragrance, I made my semi-annual trip earlier this month and picked up the newest addition to their collection- the ‘Rose’ body wash, lotion, and perfume mist. The scent, which is a lovely combination of rose, jasmine and musk- is sweet and light- not heavy and overpowering.

It’s perfect for this time of year and I look forward to using it every morning when I’m getting ready to start my day!

With an impending change in the seasons ahead- I’ll undoubtedly need to re-tweak my skin/hair care routine and products to stay ahead of the temperature and climate shifts here in New England. Until then, however- I’ve got to keep myself hydrated and protected against the still bitter cold that has remained strong and fierce where I live.

Lately I’ve been incorporating an extra step into my morning and evening skin care- this Vitamin C-loaded and lightweight ‘C.E.O. Glow’ serum from Sunday Riley. A couple of drops covers my entire face post-toning and pre-moisturizer- and the result is a softer, smoother, noticeably brighter complexion.

My skin feels amazing after I apply this stuff- and since I began using it earlier this month- I’ve noticed that some darker spots that typically pop up during PMS vanished in a matter of days and haven’t been back since. Consider me a lifelong fan!

With February being the month of all things Valentine’s Day, it should come as no surprise that I turned to a lot of pinks and reds with my makeup, fashion and accessories choices over the past few weeks. Two of my favorites- for my lips and my nails, respectively- were bright, fun- and got a lot of compliments.

First, I looked no further for a bold, neon pink lip than Fenty’s Stunna Lip Paint in their latest shade, “Unlocked”. Super pigmented, non-drying, and ultra long-lasting (my lips stay slightly tinted for a day or so after I take this off with makeup remover- that’s how strong it is!)– this liquid-to-matte lipstick definitely turns heads and had me feeling a bit more romantic each time I wore it.

Not to be outdone, I relied on NCLA’s red/pink polish in “Call My Agent” to get my digits through the month of February unscathed. I love this Vegan and cruelty-free cream polish- which adds so much color and shine to my nails without all the harmful chemicals.

Best of all? It’s pretty resilient, too-which means I don’t need to touch up my nails every couple of hours!

This absolutely adorable red beret with floral accents made an appearance on Blondie Birdie last week, and it is definitely one of my favorite accessories from this past month. I wear it everywhere- and will probably continue to do so right up until the moment Spring is here to stay.

The hat, a gift from a friend of mine, is just the right amount of vintage and cutesy charm to make me look like a starlett from the Classical Hollywood era whenever I have it on. It goes with everything, too- from wool coats to fancy sweaters to jeans and t-shirts on my more casual days.

I love the fit, the color, and the flowers that stand out along the side!

A show that made the ‘Favorites’ cut this month (which I’ll get to in just a moment) was inspired by the memoir and fascinating true life/true crime story I’ve been lowkey obsessed with for a while now. Fauna Hodel, granddaughter of the notorious George Hodel- a prominent physician and aristocrat in Los Angeles during the 30s and 40s who was thought to be the perpetrator behind the still unsolved ‘Black Dahlia’ murder- spent the first part of her life with an adoptive black family in Nevada. When she finds out who she really is- she sets off to find her real family- and uncovers the most INSANE secrets.

Honestly, the phrase “truth is stranger than fiction” has never been more appropriate than it is for Fauna and this book is one of the most heartbreaking things I’ve read.

And with that, my photogenic favorites are complete- but as they say in infomercials- wait! There’s a little bit more!

– MUSIC/MOVIES/TELEVISION –

‘I Am The Night’ – The TNT-based miniseries, which draws inspiration from Fauna Hodel’s memoirs- definitely strays from the book in terms of action, suspense, and additional characters- but the core story is still there and it’s beautifully shot, directed, and acted.

I love when Patty Jenkins and Chris Pine make magic together- and this series is no exception!

Okay, NOW my monthly “Favorites” post is completed!

A little later on this week- I’ll take a look back on February 2019 from start-to-finish (with some recent travel photos added in, as well!) but if you’d like to share some of your favorite things from this past month before then- I’d love to hear about them! Leave a comment or drop me a line!

See you all again on Thursday!

xx

– Ashley –