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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Ten on Tuesday [No.49]

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Two Monday's ago was a big day, y'all!
I had a doctor's appointment that afternoon to check on our little guy (who is doing great, by the way!) and my mom and sister, Julie, tagged along.
After my appointment, we met up with my oldest sister, Trystan, for a little window shopping at the Summit and then dinner at Bar Taco (my fave).
She had planned a belated birthday surprise for Julie, Mom, and I (since our birthday's all fall in the same week in June) and it turned out to be a cooking class at Sur La Table!
 We took a cooking class last year for my mom's birthday and this year's was so much fun as well-we ended up making crepes with an orange sauce; delicious!
I highly recommend taking a cooking class if you've never done it before, they're so much fun and you walk away with new skills and recipes.
If y'all aren't following along on my Facebook page for Southern & Style, you're really missing out!
I don't just post my blog posts when they go live (although, I do that too), I share fun articles that I read around the internet, but my favorite thing to share are #SaleAlerts of items I find around the internet that are great deals from some of my favorite retailers.
These will get more frequent as Christmas approaches because I love to get my shopping done early, if I can!
I also am just one follower away from 200 followers, so I'll be planning a giveaway be on the lookout for that and follow along for a chance to win!
 On Saturday, I had my first baby shower for our sweet little boy (who's name we're not going to reveal on the blog until after he's born-which is why I'm going to have to wait to share a lot of the baby shower pictures until after he's been born!)
 My sister, Trystan, did our invitations (aren't they absolutely beautiful?!) as well as some chalk art for the shower and y'all-if you need anything done, I'll say it a million times-she's fabulous.
Her Etsy is SouthernScrawledShop & she has done tons of custom stuff for me, she would love to do it for you too!
My sweet husband even dropped by at the end of the shower to help us load our presents up & take them home. It was the best day with my family and sweet friends, we felt so much love & I can't wait to bring our little guy into this fun group!
P.S. My dress is this Lilly dress in an older pattern (I bought it when we first found out we were pregnant...I was basically expecting a boy from day 1 and knew I wanted to wear this to our shower!)
It's the best "maternity but not" dress and I love, love, love how it fits.
There are a ton of great sales right now & it's honestly the perfect time (like I said in 2), to stock up on gifts for birthdays or Christmas!
Zulilly is one of my favorite sale sites to shop, because they host flash sales on great brands.
Fiestaware (my favorite brand of dishware!) is currently up to 40% off there for the next three days, as well as tons of your favorite lipstick brands (like Nars, Bobbi Brown, Smashbox, etc.) are up to 50% off until tomorrow!
Don't mind me-I'm just daydreaming over here about the day when we finally get to sell our house in town & move out to the farm...currently, my favorite house plan is this one by Southern Living, minus finishing the upstairs-that's something that could always just be roughed out & then finished later if we needed more space!
If you missed Saturday's post, I chatted all about the fun shoes I've been seeing all over the internet.
It definitely still feels like Summer here in Alabama & probably will until the end of September or into October, so I shared my favorite Summer shoes and mentioned briefly how I would style them into the Fall-so many of these shoes can be worn into Fall!
And bonus, a lot of them are on sale right now.
Does anyone else really love when Lay's comes out with new crazy chip flavors?
Right now I'm highly anticipating cajun spice and chile con queso!
I haven't shared a dedicated Nordstrom sale post with y'all-mostly because everyone else is doing it and I don't think y'all need another blogger shoving it down your throat...but every now & then I do like to share a pick or two of something I find to be a good deal.
This Kate Spade necklace is $16 off (formerly $48, now $32) which isn't a ton, but I definitely think it's a good buy.
I love the idea of an initial necklace, especially as a new-mom-to-be, I would gladly wear one with my little babe's new initial on it!
 On Sunday my husband & I hopped in the car and made the two hour drive North of Atlanta to see our favorite friend, who also happens to be an amazing & magical photographer-Mrs. Amy Sullins!
She's been there for us from our engagement, to our wedding, my graduation, our first anniversary, and now our maternity photos! Good-Lord willing, she'll be there to capture the birth of our sweet baby boy & his newborn photos as well. I can't imagine anyone else I'd rather have to help us document our she keeps us on our toes laughing!
I mean, just look at this sneaky-peeky image that we already got on MONDAY after a SUNDAY shoot-she's good, y'all. That light is so dreamy.
Ironically, the one thing that is my all-time favorite that I purchased during the Nordstrom sale wasn't even on sale...typical for me, haha!
I bought myself a cozy robe because I know I'll be pretty much living in cozy clothes after the baby comes and this one is already a winner. It's my favorite thing to wear in the mornings while I fix Chris breakfast and then before bed, too.

Until next time. . .

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Super-Fun Summer Shoes

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Even though I'm trying to abstain from anymore personal shopping (because furnishing a nursery and buying things for babies is expensive, y'all!) I can't help but browse with all of the summer sales going on right now-they're all so good.
So I decided to throw together a guide of some of my favorite summer shoe finds, just in case some of y'all were still on the hunt for a new pair.
Bonus-so many of these will transition beautifully into Fall!

If you were obsessed with the Hermes Oran Sandals, but couldn't stomach the outrageous price tag...then these sandals from Target's Universal Threads line might be more in your price range.
These classy sandals are only $20 and come in cognac (shown in the graphic), black, and white...and heck-at that price you can afford to get all three!
These are the perfect casual slide, plus you can wear them to the pool and not worry about them getting destroyed. They also come in at less than $25 so they're easy on your wallet.
Reviewers say to size up at least one size, as they run small-but they come from Nordstrom, so shipping & returns are always free!
Can y'all believe I only included one gingham option on this post? Honestly, I can't either!
Gingham is one of my favorite prints & I am so lucky to live in the South, where I could wear these sandals well into October and still be comfortable.
These are currently $15 (what?!) and come in this pretty gingham as well as a striped chambray.
Wear now with shorts and into Fall with a skinny jean.
The color blush was trendy in Spring, held strong in Summer, and I'm pretty sure it's going to last through Fall as well-it's that good, y'all.
If you haven't shopped the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, these shoes are part of it & are currently in stock in all sizes.
Two of the most quintessential Southern brands came together to collaborate and these sandals are some of my favorites from that collection-the magnolia blossom is just so classic.
The navy color will also match with almost anything, so feel free to wear them at will!
If you haven't gathered it from the image above, espadrilles are very popular for Summer going into Fall. These rose gold wedges are under $50 & can completely be dressed up for date night or dressed down to wear during the day.
If I'm going to wear a high shoe of any sort, it's going to have to be a platform these days.
These platform espadrilles are so cute with their leopard print, but everything else is neutral meaning you can style these however you want.
I'm thinking they would be perfect right now with a dress and then wear them into Fall with some trendy bell-bottom jeans!
This Forever21 find is a steal at under $25; don't they give y'all all the Gucci loafer vibes?!
These will be perfect for transitioning into the cooler months, while still giving a pretty pop of fuchsia.
These trendy platforms are a part of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, making them less than $75 right now. That's a great buy on a shoe that will be trendy into Fall.
They come in black & tan, I can't decide which ones I love the most.
They just have the perfect flirty seventies vibe that makes me want to wear them with a short denim skirt and a bell-sleeved top (but hello, I'm past those days 😂).
Another blush option, these pretty wedges are from the TOMS brand which I've always found so, so comfortable. Luckily for y'all that want to wear these into Fall, or just aren't blush fans-they also come in black & pine (which is an olive shade).
They're also 30% off right now which makes them an excellent deal!
Draper James always has the cutest items in their collections, don't they?!
These darling smoking slippers are perfect for tossing on & running errands or for an afternoon date.
These are a tighter fitted shoe, after wearing once you'll have a custom fit due to the tailoring and materials used.

Which pair are y'alls favorite?!
I really love 7 & 9 the most I think-they're perfect transition shoes into Fall!

Until next time. . .

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Ten on Tuesday [No.48]

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Hey y'all!
So many things have been going on lately, I haven't even given y'all a life update since May.
We've had so many things going on in our lives on the farm, getting ready for baby, etc.
A big part of our lives since I stopped teaching is obviously the farm since it's both of our "full-time" jobs. 'Tis the season around here for weaning our calves, so we've had a lot of early mornings getting ready to do that. It's a little annoying when you're getting up, but that sunrise view makes it a little bit better.
 Driving the tractor with Forrest leading the way is how we get the cows moved from the various pastures they're in, to the barn where weaning will take place.
 This little guy was checking me out while we were unloading back at the barn.
 A gorgeous golden hour shot of our girls, since I'm back on checking cows duty once or twice a day.
 We recently purchased a new big truck for our hauling business and Chris took me for a ride!
He took our niece and nephew for a ride as well and they loved honking the horn.
A lot of people don't understand our farming way of life because they never see it up close.
I can't invite all of y'all over (even though I wish I could!), but hopefully seeing these pictures & hearing my passion about this little corner of the Earth will reassure you all that family farms do exist  and that we love these animals that we're entrusted with-we're trying to be good stewards of what we're given. ♡
 Another fun thing that's happened over the past month & a half was being able to spend some quality time with our niece and nephew.
Lola went for a tractor ride with Uncle Chris to bale hay and loved it-I just melt seeing them together!
We took them and our favorite puppy boy, Forrest, for a hike at High Falls.
We all loved doing it together-especially the kids and Forrest, who all got to take a swim in that little natural pool behind us at the base of the Falls.
To end the weekend with our niece and nephew, Lola snuck off with us and ended up going for a little boat ride with Uncle Chris. This shot is him showing her some fish swimming beside the bank.
Oh, Williams-Sonoma, why you gotta tempt me this way?!
If y'all have been following along for some time now, then you probably know my affection for ginger jars in all shapes, sizes, and colors.
This one from Williams Sonoma caught my eye last week and it's now on my permanent wish list (where it will probably remain forever because of the price tag!) but that color is just so different & beautiful!
 I mentioned in the last life update that I did, our anniversary was the 30th of May plus my birthday was the 13th of June.
Chris took me to my all-time favorite restaurant, Acre in Auburn, AL for a romantic dinner.
They have an amazing "Urban Farm" where they grow a lot of their vegetables on site, but they also have a great program with local farmers to source their other produce, meats, etc.
The meal was incredible and I'm hoping I'll be able to convince him to squeeze in one more meal there before this babe comes!

 Our Fourth of July was absolutely wonderful.
We have some of the best friends, the Thompson's, that have a lake house and are always so kind to welcome us there during the Summer months.
It's just one of my most favorite places on Earth, so calming and rejuvenating-plus those friends of ours are just some of my favorite people!
Of course, we couldn't not take a boat ride & end our day with the most beautiful fireworks show from the dock-you can't beat that view!
Another not-so-fun thing that has kept me from blogging is that we lost my Daddy's mom, our Maw-Maw just a few weeks ago now.
When Chris & I went over to my parents to look through photos for the slide show for her memorial, I found this gem of us "smoking" cookie cigars-she certainly was a character that kept us all laughing!
 Just in case you missed it, I did blog Saturday about what I've been reading lately.
I got really honest with y'all & explained that I've actually read three & a half books but I hated one of them so much I didn't even want to review it here and the other I stopped not even halfway through and tossed it in the donate pile because I just wasn't interested.
Influenster is one of my most favorite apps/sites to use both as a consumer and as a blogger.
I was recently sent these Marc Jacobs lip gloss sticks in Sweet Escape and Uh-Huh Honey and y'all, they are so good I've raved about them to anyone that will listen.
They're lightly hydrating, not sticky like normal lipgloss and the colors offer the perfect wash of color for every day.
If you'd like to get freebies from Influenster (you don't have to be a blogger-you just have to have social media like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to qualify!) then sign up through this link and you'll be able to qualify for free makeup, food items, household items...basically the sky is the limit!
This section is just going to be kind of a dump of some pictures that I wanted to share from my phone to y'all. . .
 My sister, Mama, and I have been scouring antique stores for finds for not only the house, but the baby's room specifically because even though it is a nursery it's still a part of our home and I want it to fit.
We decided to not go with white because that felt too feminine, but you best bet that if we ever have a little girl I'm going to pray to find beautiful antique furniture like this one for that room.
 Our foyer has gotten a mini facelift by adding this arched mirror from Kirkland's.
It really gives that space a finished look & brings so much light into that area-I love it!
I haven't had many pregnancy cravings, but one major one has been fried green tomatoes...y'all-they are so addictive!
I haven't fried any in about a month now, but it's on my to-do list for this week.
Have you seen the Lilly Pulitzer X goop collection?!
This maxi dress and the maxi skirt are giving me all the vintage Lilly Pulitzer vibes and I really want them both! 💮
Just another beautiful view to end this life update/Ten on Tuesday from one of our local date nights on Lake Wedowee.
The cotton candy sky reflecting off the of the lake was just beautiful over the marina, basically just the lake is a favorite for Summer.

Let me know; what's been going on in your life lately or what are some of your favorites?!

Until next time. . .

Saturday, July 14, 2018

What I'm Reading Lately

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If you keep up with my blog, then it's probably been so long since I've updated y'all on my latest reads that you probably thought I stopped altogether 😂 It's literally been since March!

I've read three and a half books since then, but one of them was honestly so bad I immediately put it in my donate pile so I never had to even see it on my bookshelf again so I definitely don't want to share it with y'all & torture you too! The half book was one that I picked up on a whim from the thrift store and it was okay, just not something I wanted to focus on and I decided I was tired of forcing myself to read terrible books-so I didn't and I put it in the donate pile as well.
Don't make yourself waste your time reading bad books-read things you like!

When I was at the thrift store hunting for new books for myself and our little guy (it's the best place to find books on the cheap!) I stumbled upon two Elin Hilderbrand books and of course, bought them!
This book focuses on main character, middle-aged Dabney Kimball Beech and her life on Nantucket.
She lives a wonderful like with a pleasant husband, a sweet daughter who is successful in her own right, a job she loves, and a successful ability for matchmaking-42 successful couples in all.
The story absolutely drew me in from minute one and I was enthralled from the beginning, I stayed up many nights late into the night reading this book trying to finish it.
It has funny moments, touching moments, and just when you think you've got it figured out-you don't.
I don't often have good reviews of books that have me in tears at the end, but this one did and I still love love love it.
It's the perfect beach read, so grab a copy on your way for your last summer vacay!

Y'all know I had to squeeze in at least one historical fiction because they are my favorite genre. This story follows Isabella Bankmill as she journeys throughout London society as she comes of age and is on her way to finding her future betrothed.
She is pursued by two gentleman that are complete opposites of one another; Lord Bromby, who is dark, mysterious, and a talented poet. The other is David Beringer; a true gentleman, a philanthropist, and a man who shares the same Christian faith as Isabella.
I was a big fan of the novel from the beginning, simply because it is a historical story with a strong female lead. I feel as though it contained an excellent "lesson" if you will for those who are searching for their future life-mate because it truly is important to be like-minded and to know your partner well for the success of your relationship.
The book was well written and it kept drawing me in throughout the entire story, always frustrating me with it's direction, then consoling me with something pleasant, then taking a different turn. Some people don't like their reading to go that way, but I enjoy a book that keeps me guessing.

Although those are the only two books that I've read in the past three and a half months, I'm hoping that now that I've started back in earnest that I'll keep up with it.
It's really come in handy to have some good books to read with my inability to sleep well at night (& I'm sure there will be lots of long nights with a babe in my future that I might be able to sneak some pages in then!)

If you've read anything good recently, please leave it below as I'm always on the hunt for new books!

Until next time. . .

Saturday, July 7, 2018

30 Questions for Self-Discovery...Answered!

Happy Saturday, y'all!
It's been a few days since you've seen me around the blog, life has been overwhelming the past month & I haven't been able to pull myself together to type out a post.
Expect a Ten on Tuesday with a life recap soon, but until then...I'm going to answer some fun questions that I found on Pinterest. Maybe y'all will discover something new about me while I'm on this journey to self-discovery!

1) How do I feel at the moment?
I feel good. A lot of major things have been going on around these parts lately & things are finally slowing down, just in time for us to start really preparing for Baby Upchurch. So good & excited!

2) What do I need more of in my life?
Time! But don't we all?

3) What would make me happy right now?
One of those new peach tea lemonade things from Chick-Fil-A. I've been wanting to try one forever!

4) What is going right in my life?
Currently, everything is pretty "right" right now.
My relationships are in a good place. I'm happier now than I think I've ever been.

5) What am I grateful for?
I'm grateful for the people I get to spend my life with. I'm grateful for this little one that will be joining our family in just a few months. I'm grateful for a big black lab that is sleeping by my feet as I type. I'm grateful for the freedom to enjoy the little things that life offers.

6) When did I experience joy this week?
The Fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays because of time spent together with friends, fireworks, and because it's a strong reminder of the freedom that so many of us take for granted on a daily basis.
I definitely experienced many types of joy on the Fourth!

7) Share a small victory or success:
I made it through two weeks of eating low-carb, aka no desserts, pasta, bread and minimal starchy veggies! It was a success because now I know I can do it and I definitely want to stick to a loose version of this diet now & then go all out after baby gets here.

8) What's bothering me? Why?
Getting the water balance with my tomato plant has been a struggle, y'all.
It's a first world problem, but it's bothering me because I want homegrown tomatoes!

9)What are my priorities at the moment?
Taking care of myself & Christopher, enjoying our "alone" time before baby arrives, and getting the nursery finished!

10) What do I love about myself?
I love my empathy for others.
After teaching, I realize that empathy isn't all that common (especially among the next generation) and I hope it's something I foster in my child.

11) Who means the world to me and why?
My family. No matter what happens, they're mine & I love each and every one of them.
When things happen in your family, you realize how you want to hold all of them as close & as tight as you can.

12) If I could share one message with the world, what would it be?
Choose kindness.
It costs nothing to be kind and it can change someone's world.

13) What advice would I give to my younger self? Do I follow this advice now?
Don't be so worried about what people think of you. Do what you like & do what is right and everything else will fall into place.
I definitely follow this advice now, I didn't way back when.

14) What lesson did I learn this week?
To always bring bug-spray!

15) If I had all the time in the world, what would I want to do first?
Get in my kitchen and try out different recipes!
(Oh, and if I didn't have to clean up, haha!)

16) What's draining my energy? How can I reduce or cut it out?
The only thing draining my energy right now is this baby and he's worth it!

17) What does my ideal morning look like?
Sleeping in, then spending the morning on the porch leisurely sipping a cup of coffee and reading a book/magazine or listening to a podcast episode.

18) What does my ideal day look like?
If it was my perfect, ideal day-I would definitely be on vacation!
Preferably, the beach.

19) What makes me come alive? When was the last time I felt truly alive?
I'm most alive when I'm out having fun with the ones I love.
When Chris and I are able to get away and spend time doing things that aren't work, that's when I'm most myself and the happiest-for example, we took my niece and nephew hiking a few weeks ago and I felt great, I had a blast-it was the best.

20) Who/What inspires me the most? Why am I drawn to those inspirations?
My Grandma is always going to be one of the most inspiring people to me.
She was a wonderful hostess, had the most kind heart, but also was fierce in her fight for the things she wanted.
I'm drawn to those inspirations because that's exactly how I want to be remembered at the end of the day!

21) Where does my pain originate? What would need to happen for me to heal?
I used to worry over things people said about me or mistakes I had made (no matter how small), because a lot of the pain I have comes from disappointing people. However, time and learning to forgive myself is how I heal from those hurts.

22) What are my strengths? What am I really good at?
I definitely think that communicating is one of my major strengths & something that I'm really good at. Sometimes it takes me a little while to warm up to someone and be sure of myself in a situation, but once I am I can rock a conversation.

23) What is something I've always wanted to do, but was too scared?
Go on a trip somewhere, solo.
I've heard so many amazing things about traveling by yourself, but the thought of it has always terrified me!

24) What is something I would love to learn?
I really would love to learn a foreign language, but the time commitment seems so daunting.

25) What hobbies would I like to try?
I've always thought it might be fun to be able to sew or embroider, they're lost arts in today's world!

26) Where would I want to live in my ideal life?
I'll be 100% honest, the only location I can imagine myself living other than the home we're in now is when we're finally able to build a house at the farm.
Other than that, I don't want to leave my tiny small town.

27) Where would I like to travel in the next five years?
-New Orleans, Louisiana
-Charleston, South Carolina (yes, I've been, but it was only one day!)
-Disney World (maybe-if we don't have another little one by then!)
-Kentucky (I would love to see horse country, so I don't necessarily have one city or town that I'd like to see)

28) What can I do to take better care of myself?
Not be so lazy in applying my skincare every night.
I apply it probably 5 out of 7 nights a week, but every night would be ideal (I do manage to cleanse my face every night though, thank goodness!)

29) When have I done something that I thought I couldn't do?
I've never really thought that I couldn't do something 100%...but one time I did make strawberry shortcakes from scratch with about 5 minutes warning that they were wanted by my husband.
I impressed myself that night.

30) At the end of my life, what do I want my legacy to be?
I've already mentioned this previously, when I talked about my Grandma being my inspiration, but I want to be remembered as someone who was kind, fiercely loyal to those around her, loving, and of course-a gracious hostess that always made her guests feel at home.

Well, some of those got deep-didn't they?!
I hope y'all learned something or at least found these questions & answers entertaining!

Until next time. . .
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