Favorites: October 2019!

Good Evening, everyone! I hope you’ve all been having a wonderful day so far!

Tonight’s post is arriving a little late. I’ve said it before, I’m sure- but even the most carefully thought out plans or the strictest of schedules can get a bit delayed or botched up a bit when life throws us a curve ball. I had wanted to get this post up a little earlier today, as is my typical way of running “Blondie Birdie”- but a day filled with meetings, phone calls, and back-to-back commitments kept me a little preoccupied throughout the morning and early afternoon.

But, I’m here- and October is winding down (I can’t believe it either!) and although I’ll have my monthly recap up this coming Thursday morning- I promise! – I wanted to share a few of my favorite things from these past few weeks that have helped make my non-stop countdown to Halloween a bit more comfy, cozy and healthy!

That’s right, y’all! It’s a late night edition of “Favorites” for October 2019!

This month’s list isn’t particularly lengthy- but it’s a good one for sure. So, without wasting any more time- let’s take a look!

Back in 2016, a day before a departing flight to Las Vegas- I picked up a super cheap pair of moccasins to wear on board so I wouldn’t be uncomfortable and so that I could slip them on and off with ease while getting through the TSA checkpoints. They ended up being the most comfortable pair of shoes I’d ever owned- and I wore them constantly.

Earlier this year, they finally gave out after years of wear and tear- and I haven’t been able to replicate them since. This sherpa-lined pair, while a little bit bulkier- are still super comfortable and still look very cute with a pair of jeans and a flannel, or a pair of leggings with a long sweater. They’re perfect for the sunnier Fall days we’ve had where I don’t want to commit to boots but still want my feet to stay warm!

Although I try to eat healthy, work out regularly and follow a pretty hardcore skin regimen- sometimes it helps to have a little extra boost working on the inside to keep me looking and feeling as radiant as I’m striving for. Earlier this month, I started taking these daily skin-boosting vitamins from EVOLUTION_18 (by Bobbi Brown)– and I can say that my skin looks brighter, clearer, and smoother after only a few weeks.

Loaded with collagen and Vitamin C- this is my new miracle vitamin that I’m swearing by now and forever! My skin has never looked better- and that’s coming from someone who has tried pretty much every mask, cream, spa procedure- and everything in-between!

Of course, my face isn’t the only thing that needs a little extra TLC this time of year- especially since I’ve been wearing heeled boots pretty much non-stop. Although I stick to my mani/pedis every few weeks (despite the weather outside)– sometimes you need some additional self-care in-between spa visits.

I love this pumpkin-infused foot scrub from ONYX– which smells delicious and smooths out my heels in no time at all. I like to use these packets after a long day at work on my feet or on the weekends when I’m indulging in some lazy, Netflix and Chillin’ on my own. They just relax me so much!

And finally- even though I like to be spooky 24/7- some days I don’t have time to pull off a costume or horror-inspired look. That’s why I’ve embraced ultra-soft and knotted headbands with fun and festive prints on them to give me a fun Halloween vibe without all the time-consumption AND keep my curls away from my eyes when I’m busy working out/running errands/getting things done.

This one in particular, which features bats and masks- was designed by my boss’ fiancé- who is starting her own accessories business in the coming weeks ahead. I love it!

And that’s it for the photogenic things- but I’ve got a couple more things on my list this month!

– MUSIC/MOVIES/TELEVISION –

“Joker” – Controversial? Sure. Entertaining? You bet! I was in the majority of people who truly enjoyed this movie and celebrated Joaquin Phoenix’s performance in it. Despite all the fears of violence surrounding the film’s opening day- I had a great time watching this in theaters and would absolutely see it again!

“Big Mouth (Season 3)” – My favorite raunchy comedy about raging hormones and teenage angst returned for it’s third season on Netflix earlier this month- and I binged the entire thing over the course of an evening. Just like the seasons before it, “Big Mouth” delivered another dosage of “too close to home” humor surrounding all the awkwardness that comes with puberty and adolescence.

And I think that just about does it for October, my lovelies! My favorite month filled with some of my (new) favorite things!

I’ll let you all get some much-needed rest now, and I’ll be back on Thursday morning before the Halloween hi-jinks officially commence to take a reflective look back on the month that was.

Have a great night, everybody!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Keeping Up with the Addams-es…

Good Morning and Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I’ve been a firecracker of productivity this week- slaying at work and getting all sorts of things done post-office before I eventually fall asleep at night. I had said before that October tends to be a busier-than-usual-month for me, what with all the Halloween-related festivities and all- and this year is no exception to that tradition. It feels like I’ve been going non-stop!

After work tonight, some friends from the office and I will be venturing down to Rhode Island to enjoy some hard cider and see a famous annual Jack-O-Lantern exhibit I haven’t been able to make it to in a couple of years- so I’m pretty excited. It’s a fitting event for the final days before Halloween.

But today I thought I’d share one of my coziest, warmest, and potentially spooky ensembles I wore earlier this week to work. Between the over-sized black and white sweater and matching socks- a friend who had recently seen me try this on in my apartment joked that I looked like Wednesday Addams. I think it may be a combination of her and Lydia Deetz from “Beetlejuice”- but either way- it’s super comfy.

I wish I could remember exactly where I got this sweater from, but knowing me- I think I can safely assume it was Primark and I was probably getting ready to go on a trip or something when I bought it!

And the faux-leather boots are from Vera Wang. They’re super comfortable, match well with anything and everything- and have a bit of a chunky heel on them that gives me a little height and makes my posture look much better than it normally does when I’m standing/walking.

I’ll be back on Friday with some photos from tonight’s festivities before we break for the weekend and I take some time to put the finishing touches on my Halloween costume(s). I’m very, very excited to share them with you all!

But until then- enjoy your “Hump Day” and stay warm and spooky out there!

xx

– Ashley –

Favorites: August 2019!

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

The end (of August and the Summer!) is nigh- but I’m ready for sweaters, leaf peeping, scary movies and pumpkin patches- especially now that I’m living in one of the most picturesque, straight-out-of-a-postcard areas in New England! It’s going to be my first Fall in the Pioneer Valley- and there are so many things I want to do!

But respects must be paid to August and really the entire Summer of 2019, first- which I fully intend to do tomorrow morning for my monthly “In a Nutshell” post where I recap the weeks that were and talk about what I have planned for the weeks ahead. There’s a lot of ground to cover- but it’s going to be a fun trip down (recent) Memory Lane!

Before that, though- I wanted to share some of my favorite things from August 2019. From beauty products, to jewelry, to silly sentimental pieces- all the way to movies, music, television, etc.

This is my usual months-end “Favorites” post- and as always- I’ll be starting with the things I was able to photograph, first!

Starting with the silly, sentimental pieces- I had picked up this pair of silver, glittery sandals for about $8 at Primark a couple of years ago when I was strapped for footwear just hours before I was headed to a beach bonfire- but these have become my default Summer shoe choice ever since. This past August was no different, as I wore these trusty, surprisingly durable beauties during road trips, ice cream pit stops, lazier days at the office- and lounging lake-side.

I’m going to store them in the back of my closet until next Summer- where I’m sure they’ll see more adventures.

Exfoliation is key year-round, but especially in the Summer when I’m all about exposed legs, arms, and the occasional exposed midriff. I want my skin glowing and smooth- so I try to find scrubs that both buff away the dead skin but also conditions without drying me out.  I’m partial to sugar scrubs, and this whipped one from LALICIOUS does the job just right.

Not only does this scrub smell incredible, like a candy shop- but it leaves my skin touchable, soft, and glowing.

The scrub is $35, but a little goes a long way- so one tub of this will last you well over the course of a season!

Of course, I can’t exfoliate my body without making sure my face is super smooth, too- but being that it’s far more sensitive than say, my knees or my elbows- I rely on this gentle microdermabrasion scrub from Mary Kay that a friend turned me onto earlier this month.

I only use this lightweight exfoliant about 2 times a week if that- but the results are instant- and my serums and moisturizers sink into my skin with so much more ease whenever I apply them after gently cleansing my skin with this scrub. Throughout August, my complexion has been clear, smooth, and even.

Finally, my go-to jewelry for August was simple and consisted of two things. One, a moonstone statement ring I had picked up a couple of weekends ago during the annual Massachusetts Tax-Free Weekend.

The other? A throwback to my pre-teen and early teenage years with the return of the cowrie shell craze. While I couldn’t bring myself to wear a choker of these like the guys I grew up with used to do all. the. time.– I thought the anklet was a nice, more subtle choice.

I wore this all during the Summer, but it really made a splash in August when more people noticed and seemed to get on board with the trend making a comeback! Now we just need to bring back those glittery butterfly-shaped hair clips and I’ll be thrilled.

And that, my friends- just about does it for the photogenic favorites. But, as always- a one or two more things made the list this month, too!

– MISCELLANEOUS –

All Things Seafood – I had said that my Summer 2019 bucket list consisted of eating as much lobster, crab and scallops as possible, and in August I rose to the challenge since many of my favorite seaside shacks close up after Labor Day.

With stops at some of my longtime favorite locations and some new finds here in the Valley (including a delicious chowder house- which I’ll be revisiting soon!) I’m pretty sure I don’t even want to look at anything from the ocean again until next May/June at least.

Clowns, Baby! – With “It: Chapter 2” coming out in theaters next week, a new trailer for “The Joker” dropping earlier this week (the movie premieres in October) and a new teaser poster for the next Harley Quinn movie making the rounds recently- Summer 2019 is all about clownery and I am here for it. My apologies for anyone with a clown phobia- but I am so, so excited for all of it!

Aaaaand now I’m finished! Although it’s the end of the work-week, I’ve still got some things to do around the office before I break for the long weekend- so I’ve got to get going!

As always, if you’d like to share your own favorite things from this past August- feel free to drop me a line!

Enjoy your Friday, everyone!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Your Best American Girl…

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone!

I hope those of you here in the States had a wonderful Fourth of July. Mine was exquisite- spent in the company of both longtime and new friends at various little get togethers, gatherings and potlucks. I’ll have a full recap of my night (and this coming weekend) within a few days- but first I wanted to share my spin on dressing patriotic without looking too over-the-top.

When I was a little kid, my mom liked to dress me to the nines for whatever holiday we were celebrating. Color-coordinated shirts/dresses, shorts/tights, shoes and hair accessories. For the Fourth of July- I was decked out in more Americana, red white and blue stuff than any clothing store had any business selling.

Now that I’m older- I’m all about looking festive but staying comfortable and practical. I want outfits that are easy to take from an afternoon cookout to evening fireworks- from evening fireworks to post-fireworks cocktails. I don’t want to look like I raided a novelty shop or catalog for the cheesiest America-themed pieces around- but I still want to show a little patriotism despite my current political views and opinions on this country not being exactly favorable at the moment.

For yesterday’s 4th of July celebrations- I figured two out of the three American colors wasn’t bad. I chose these little navy blue lace shorts (companions to the black ones I wore in my last OOTD post) and this slouchy, deep red billowy top with bell sleeves. The fabrics were lightweight and comfortable- which was a necessity since temperatures skyrocketed to the high 80s yesterday afternoon and humidity was at an all-time high.

There was no way I would have survived in denim or anything other than breathable cotton without pouring sweat!

For my shoes, I donned my favorite patriotic pair of flats that I’ve had for a few years now (and are still in mint condition) to incorporate some of the white in my red, white and blue.

And for those who saw me without sunglasses yesterday afternoon/evening- I utilized my blue FENTY liquid liner for an extra pop of color!

I’m sure next year I’ll try something a little different, like red and white or all white with pops of blue here and there- but we’ll see!

This weekend I’m heading to the beach, chilling a recipe for Summertime sweets I’ll have up a little later on next week- and getting some overdue errands done in-between time in the sun and surf!

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend ahead of you. Stay cool, stay hydrated, wear SPF (and reapply it often)– and stay safe!

See you again on Monday!

xx

– Ashley –

OOTD: Now It’s All Covered in Flowers…

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone! We made it to the weekend!

It’s been such a busy- but wonderful- week and I’m excited to spend some time with my mom and my brothers tonight at our bi-weekly family dinner, head into Boston for a few hours to do my radio show tomorrow afternoon- and then soak up a little sun back at home while I’m out and about on the town running errands and just exploring my neighborhood!

And while I’m doing that, I’ll more than likely be wearing one of my favorite Summer weekend ensembles- a sundress or romper with bright and fun sandals. Much like I did last weekend when I took my best friend to visit the Bridge of Flowers while he was visiting from the city!

I love a good, simple, comfortable and loose-fitting sundress with a cute print. This one, adorned with hot pink flowers- also has an open back to it- so to keep myself from looking like I was going out to the club when I was really just walking around the more “sophisticated” Shelburne Falls during the afternoon- I opted to wear a pale pink tank top underneath the dress to look a bit more modest and not show off too much skin since there were plenty of families and small children running around!

And if these sandals look familiar- it’s because they’re the ones I had picked up at ModCloth last year and wore for pretty much the entirety of Summer 2018. After pulling them out of my closet and bringing them to my new apartment with me- they are officially back and ready for more (and are still ridiculously comfortable!)

And, as cute as this dress and these sandals are- it’s Shelburne Falls that was the real MVP of this “Outfit of The Day” post. No matter where I turned, the entire village itself was the perfect backdrop for photos and selfies. Look at that wall of ivy! Look at the Deerfield River behind me! They made the dress look even better, honestly!

And that just about does it for me this week. I’m going to be back on Monday with more warm weather clothing, some Summertime recipes, peeks around the Pioneer Valley and celebrating Blondie Birdie’s second year here on the web (!!!)– but here’s wishing you all a lovely, safe weekend ’til then!

Now get out there and go have some fun!

xx

– Ashley –