Seersucker Sass: January 2016

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Weekend Reading

Happy weekend, y'all!  After a crazy, chaotic week, I'm using this weekend to recharge.  In the past, my boyfriend and I used to plan out our weekends way in advance, but this year we've pretty much just lounged on weekends and allowed spontaneity to occur.  Today we babysit for some family friends, took Franny on a three mile walk, and enjoyed some ice cream since the weather is absolutely gorgeous.  I'm spending the rest of my afternoon planning content for the coming month, so if there's anything y'all want to see, please let me know!

This weekend's Weekend Reading includes 12 of my favorite links from the internet this week :)  I hope you enjoy them!

What are your weekend plans? :)  
As always, I invite you to share your favorite post of the week with me in the comments!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Valentine's Day (Or Galentine's Day!) on a Budget

I love when y'all give me ideas for content!  My blogger bestie Lex (check out her blog here!) suggested a post about Valentine's Day on a budget, and I thought it was brilliant, so here we are!  I feel like Valentine's Day is one of those holidays that can get super expensive super fast.  You want to buy something nice for your significant other or you want to buy cute coffee mugs for all of your best girls, and then you're broke and that sucks.  So today's post is all about how to celebrate Valentine's Day and Galentine's Day on a budget!

Set a gift budget •  If you're planning to exchange gifts with someone, discuss a budget.  I know, budgets are horribly un-romantic, but it's awkward when one of y'all gifts a $25 gift and the other gifts an Apple watch just because you weren't on the same page!  Or instead of buying for all of your girl friends, arrange a gift exchange with a $20 cap.  [Check out this blog post where all gifts are under $25!]

Grab a Groupon •  I don't have any personal experience with Groupon, but a lot of my friends swear by it!  If you're unfamiliar, you can purchase things like restaurant gift cards, spa services, hotel stays, and even event tickets at a discounted rate.  You can search by location, so if there is anything specific to your community, it's pretty easy to find!  

Chocolate & Wine Tasting Party •  This is perfect for a Galentine's Day!  Ask your friends to bring a bottle of wine and/or some chocolate, and then taste the pairings together while enjoying a chick flick!  I once attended a stock the bar shower where we were all asked to bring a bottle of wine, and they created "scratch off" invitations to let you know what kind of wine to bring... Totally a cute idea for this type of event, as well!  (See DIY tips on that here.)  This handy guide tells you which chocolates pair best with each wine.  Your friends will think you are oh so fancy, and you'll get to enjoy good company, good chocolate, and good wine!

Cook dinner together • If you don't want to fight the crowds or spend a small fortune at a wine bar, why not cook dinner together?  It doesn't have to be anything lavish, you could even create a bunch of different snacks to enjoy together while watching a movie.  Get dressed up and light a few candles. (Or stay in your PJ's and totally lounge!)  My boyfriend and I are doing a late Valentine's Day celebration, so this is what we plan to do!

Have an experience • When I asked on Snapchat (username- seersuckersass) what everyone was doing for Valentine's Day, my friend Ashley of A Blonde & a Briefcase told me she was going to a trampoline park!  I looked online, and in my area, it's like $11 for an hour of jumping.  If you go out for a cheap dinner afterwards or order a pizza, it could totally be budget friendly.  Or go on a "scavenger hunt" in your town, go to a rock climbing gym, do something a little out of your comfort zone!

Volunteer •  I think that sometimes in our culture, we forget just how fortunate we are to have the problems that we have.  While some of us are lonely because we're single, there are others who are lonely because they're in a nursing home.  The snow may ruin your plans, but imagine what it's like to be homeless when it snows.  Valentine's Day is all about love, so it's the perfect opportunity to give love back to your community - volunteer at a soup kitchen, stop by a local nursing home, or even babysit for a couple from your church.  At the end of the day, your heart will be full, and to me, that's what Valentine's Day is all about.

How are you spending Valentine's Day?  If you have any other Valentine's Day (or Galentine's Day) on a budget ideas, leave them in the comments!  I'd love to hear them :)

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Becoming the Woman I was Meant to Be

One of my resolutions for 2016 was to embrace what makes me happy.  Another was to focus on a low maintenance beauty routine.  I had planned on writing this really beautiful post about how I was implementing these things, how I had really embraced my wild hair and how I had sworn off makeup.  But that hasn't happened, and to be honest, I'm okay with that.  Instead I've done quite the opposite.  I've decided that 2016 will be the year that I continue bettering myself and becoming the woman that I want to be, whoever that may be at the moment.

My first step to embracing what makes me happy was going to be a hair makeover. I wanted to keep my long locks and balayage them, maybe even add some bangs!  I wanted something new and fun.  The foils come off, and I have super blonde highlights.  My hairstylist totally pushed me away from bangs and gave me some light layers instead.  I lost about three inches of dead hair.  I loved it and hated it all at the same time because it looked nice, but it's not the trendy hair that I wanted.  I pulled out my straightener, which is something that I only use when my hair is at a weird length and I don't know what else to do with it.  I straightened my hair every day for over two weeks.

Because of the blonde highlights and my fair skin, I found myself applying makeup every morning.  I don't love the full coverage of my foundation, but I slapped it on anyway.  I allowed myself to skip eyeliner, because I just really don't love it.  In fact, I only got into a habit of wearing it because all of the cool girls in middle school that I so desperately wanted to be like wore it... Middle school!  I was letting something from middle school affect my beauty routine, and at almost 25, I said good riddance to that.

After two weeks of not feeling like myself, I had that weird "all is well" moment that I blogged about here.  And as I walked home from that leadership training with my hair styled, make up on, fancy new coat from my dad and stepmom cinched around my waist, high heels clicking every step of the way, I felt chic.  I felt professional.  And I felt like I could take on the world.  I decided that I wanted to feel like that every single day... That's the woman that I want to be.... the woman that I was meant to be.

Following that was this beautiful moment where I found the balance.  If I'm having a "good texture day" with my hair, I turn the straightener off.  (The only good thing about losing my hair to chemo pills was that it grew back with this amazing, beachy wave texture!)  I traded my foundation for a CC cream that lets my freckles shine through.  And I've been feeling bold and confident enough to truly experiment with fashion instead of just wearing clothes.

Thanks for following along with me on my journey - both of updates on my 2016 Resolutions and updates on becoming the woman I was meant to be.

How are your resolutions coming along?

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Lilly Pulitzer New Arrivals

I revealed in a blog post last week that I've been feeling a little down lately.  On top of that, my boss was hospitalized Saturday and is currently on a ventilator.  I was feeling really unmotivated to blog and my focus was on worrying, so I started thinking about things that make me happy.  That's why I'm doing today's post on Lilly Pulitzer's new arrivals.

I received my first Lilly dress the day that I was declared cancer free by the doctors at Vanderbilt.  It was hot pink, and to me, the bright colors represented a new lease on life.  Today, I'm wearing my hot pink Lilly cardigan because the bright color puts a little smile on my face.  Here are some Lilly goodies that I would love to put in my closet this season:

Marlowe Boatneck T-Shirt Dress •  I already own three Marlowe dresses, so this is at the top of my wish list!  Marlowe dresses are comfy and unfussy; I wear mine to work and out on the boat.

Hillary Draped Neck Pullover •  A few years ago, I bought a few shirts very similar to this from Eddie Bauer, and every day when I get home, I change into one of them.  I love the pink color of this one.

Boca Chica Crop Top & Skirt Set •  I love this crop top set a million times more than I love Lilly's crop top set from last year.  I love that the bare stomach is offset by long sleeves.  It makes me feel like I might actually be able to pull it off!

Cove Sleeveless Fit & Flare Dress •  The woven color look of this dress really pulls me in!  I feel like it's a great little dress that could be dressed up with metallic sandals and funky jewelry or dressed down with a ponytail and sneakers.

Lola Pull-On Ankle Length Pant •  I live in pixie pants - the brighter, the better! For the time being, I would pair these with my navy knit turtleneck, but in spring I would pair them with my cute little lace tank and a cardi.

Celia Fit & Flare Dress •  My first thought when I saw this dress was that I could throw a blazer over it for work.  I love dresses that can be worn for work and play, especially because I go to so many events after work.

Windward Dress •  I'm obsessed with the cinched waist and work appropriate length of this one!

Luxletic Hooded Poncho •  I'm a big fan of athleisure.  I would feel so fabulous throwing this on after yoga or ballet class when I'm burning up, but it's still cold outside, or wearing it to stretch as I warm up.

Luxletic Weekender Cropped Pant •  I live in cropped yoga pants.  Might as well make them Lilly!  This bright print makes me smile, and they might even motivate me to go to yoga.  That's what I'm going to tell myself ;)

See anything you're adding to your wish list?  What is your go to "pick me up?"

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Weekend Reading

 Happy weekend, y'all!  This snow has given me the perfect excuse to be lazy and stay in my apartment, and I love it.  My boyfriend and I started Friday Night Lights on Thursday, and we haven't been able to stop watching! Haha.  My plans for the rest of the weekend are to focus on the blog.

The snow has given me an opportunity to read a ton of blog posts lately, so here are my favorites of the week!  I've also linked some spring-y products, because I am so ready for sunshine and springtime!  Enjoy!

What was your favorite link of the week?  Leave it in the comments below!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Life Lately

On New Year's Day, I sat down and created this awesome editorial calendar for January and February.  I think that sometimes in life we make plans, and God just giggles because He has his own plan going for us.  That definitely happened with my editorial calendar.  (Thank goodness I write in erasable pen!)  If you're the least bit curious what I've been up to in 2016, here's an update.  (And if you aren't, no worries!  Come back tomorrow for something else!)

Infusion drama // hug your nurse •  My infusions are pretty much what keep me going.  It is amazing how much a medication can change your life.  Last Wednesday, I got a call two hours before my infusion saying that it had been indefinitely postponed, and I seriously did not know what to do besides pray that God would give me the energy I needed to make it until the next one.  I was able to get my IV Monday afternoon.  I was so annoyed because I was in a room that is used as a supply closet, but my nurses were awesome.  My hands were cold, so they pulled out a hand warmer and wrapped me up in a blanket.  They were completely overbooked and understaffed, but they took the time to check on me, offer me snacks, and even hooked my IV in a different spot in my arm so that I could cover it up with my sleeve because #cold.  I'm so thankful to continually receive medical care that goes above and beyond each time I get my infusion.

There are no snow days in economic development.  •  Yesterday morning, a snowstorm hit as I was driving to work.  I was afraid the interstates would shut down, so I took a different route to work... and my car spun out on a patch of ice while going uphill.  I pulled into a parking lot to chill out, and eventually decided that I should just head home.  I called my boss to call in, and he showed up in the parking lot in his SUV and drove me to work!  We were working a project, and we couldn't afford to be one person short.  The roads are much better today, so I'm looking forward to getting my car home before an ice storm hits tomorrow!  (And I wore my Bean Boots... just in case!)

Trying new things •  My boyfriend is so artistic and super interested in war, so he started this new hobby of building models of scenes of World War I.  Y'all, I had no idea what to do with myself because I'm so used to seeing him sitting at his desk crunching numbers.  So I decided I needed a new hobby - calligraphy.  I've wanted to learn calligraphy since I was in fourth grade.  (Super specific, but I know this because I was published in the local newspaper at the beginning of my fourth grade school year saying I wanted to learn calligraphy in school that year.  #overachiever.  And I touched on it in my 24 Before 24 post!)  With talk of an engagement on the way, I thought it would be really cool to know so I could do wedding invitation envelopes and place cards.  After getting a hand cramp from trying to learn strokes from a horrible book, I've decided to take a class!  Haha.  Wish me luck!

Cool sponsored content •  Sponsored content always excites me!  The pay is nice, but what really excites me is the challenge and endless possibilities of how I could "style" a post.  Do I frame it like this or like that?  Trying to decide that always leads me to more blog post ideas!  I can't wait to share the end results with y'all.  (PS - I recently wrote this sponsored post, and I'd love for you to check it out!)

Annaliese came to visit!  •  Annaliese of Southern Belle in Training came and stayed with me for the last few days of her winter break, and we had an absolute blast!  We ate good food, drank yummy drinks, and explored.  And of course, Francis loved having a friend around!  You can read my post about it here, and A's post about it here!

I am still drinking tons of water.  •  My infusion messed me up a little bit.  I planned Wednesday's water intake around my infusion, so when that fell through, that got me off my game.  In the few days following the IV, I had no interest in drinking water, so I didn't force myself.  But this morning, I was dying of thirst, so I whipped this 24 oz. bad boy out and had a third of my water consumption done for the day by 9:30!  (If drinking more water is one of your resolutions, check out this post!)

I've done quite a bit of shopping.  •  I usually don't allow myself to shop without a list.  I like to buy mostly needs and a few wants, and I always have something in mind while shopping.  This weekend, I went a little crazy... at least for me!  I started with Aerie, and I fell in love with all of their stuff because it reminded me of my ballet days!  I left with this little wrap sweater, and I'm holding out for this top and these pants when they go on sale.  And then I went to Journey's and realized I need casual shoes, so I bought these adorable little Vans!  Gap was having a sale, and I had a gift card, so I stocked up on these tops.  I tried a new CC cream, and it definitely confirmed that I love CC more than foundation.

I am learning to prioritize and show myself grace.  •  Being involved in my community is important to me.  But sometimes I miss out on things that are also important to me because I have a board meeting.  And I refuse to let that happen in 2016.  In my mind, my cousin's birthday dinner takes priority over Junior League.  The birthday of my best friend, who helped me through an extremely trying time this fall, takes priority over a board meeting.  I'm not saying that I'm going to skip meetings constantly for things that are more "fun", but I'm going to accept that I don't have to have perfect attendance.  Minutes exist for a reason! ;) 

My grandmother passed away.  •  I don't want to be one to air dirty laundry online, so I will keep this brief.  My grandmother passed away when I was around a year old, but my step grandmother has always treated me like one of her own, and I've always considered her to be my other grandmother.  This weekend, I happened to find out that my step grandmother passed away in October.  None of her children had let anyone on my side of the family know.  I have spent the past week trying to comprehend this.  I have felt a heaviness in my spirit, and I haven't had much to say.  Always tell those you love that you love them.  You never know when you won't see them again.

What's been going on in your life?  I love keeping up with y'all!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Valentine's Day Gift Guide: Under $25

Valentine's Day is my favorite holiday.  Not only is it less stressful than Christmas, but it's a day that celebrates love!  (And it was supposed to be my birthday, but that's totally besides the point.)  I get so frustrated when I see people bashing the holiday because they're single or they don't have plans.  To me, Valentine's Day is a great way to tell someone you love them - whether it be a significant other, your best friend who has helped you through a really rough patch this year, or your momma.  One year I even handmade valentines for each of my co-workers!  Life is short, so don't forget to tell those you love that you love them... especially on a day that's all about love!

I do a lot of gift guides on my blog.  We all have our own love language, and buying gifts for people is mine.  They're usually not lavish, but I put a lot of thought into them.  If you're looking for Valentine's Day gifts under $25, this guide has got you covered!

If you're still struggling to find that perfect gift for someone this Valentine's Day, shoot me an email (contact(at)seersuckersass(dot)com)!  I'll be glad to come up with some gift ideas specifically for the person that you're buying for in your budget!  (Just to clarify, this is totally free!)

Have you made Valentine's Day plans for this year yet?

Happy Tuesday!

PS - Thanks to everyone who has been praying for me and checking in on me with all of the infusion drama.  I was able to get my infusion yesterday, and I'm already feeling much better.  I so appreciate each and every one of you.

Monday, January 18, 2016

The Importance of Self Expression

My parents always encouraged self expression.  I started ballet lessons before I was three, and my mamaw started working with me on the piano soon after.  Growing up, I always planned to pursue a career in the arts.  (Specifically, I wanted to be a Radio City Rockette, and even trained under one for middle school and high school!)

If you follow along with my blog, you know that wasn't the path that I went.  Having a corporate job that keeps me behind a desk for the majority of the day, I definitely see the need for a creative outlet.  I love to blog because it combines my two favorite ways to express myself - writing and fashion.

Today I've teamed up with Motorola to share some photos of outfits that I really feel express who I am and my personal style!

Corporate fashion does not have to be boring!

I love wearing bright colors to the office, specifically this red blazer with matching red lipstick!  I choose pixie pants over traditional slacks, because I find slacks and traditional dress pants overwhelm my petite figure... and make me look like I'm playing dress up in my momma's closet.

I love bright colors and big patterns!

Whether it's Lilly Pulitzer or leopard print, I love bright colors and bold patterns!  I love to wear something that makes someone say "Oh, I've never thought about styling that piece that way!"

I love fun accessories.


I love tortoiseshell accessories like the monogrammed necklace and the glasses that I only wear when I am trying to look a tinge older and more professional.  (I wear contacts every day.)

I also have a tendency to be a little over the top when attending a themed party...  Do you like my Kentucky Derby hat? ;)

But my favorite "accessories" are books and magazines!

I didn't have a lot of friends in elementary school and middle school, but I had books.  My mamaw was a librarian, and she really instilled a love for reading in me at an early age.  I don't go anywhere without something to read.  You never know when you'll be stuck in a waiting room or when you'll need an escape!

I love embracing the moment.

I will never be one of those girls who is "too cool" to do something.  If it rains during my photo shoot, I'll throw on a (monogrammed, of course!) rain coat.  If there's any kind of animal walking around, I will pet it!  So much of my self expression is dependent on the moment that I'm in and the circumstances that I'm under.

Are you noticing a trend?  There are so many ways to express yourself!

I mentioned above that I really love to express myself with accessories, but an accessory that a lot of people may not think about is a cell phone!  Think about it - we don't go anywhere without them, and they're usually in plain site of everyone.  Jonathan Adler's designs span furnishings to fashion, and now... a fun collaboration with Motorola on the Moto X Pure Edition!  

Moto X Pure Edition

Moto X Pure Edition

Moto X Pure Edition

There are three styles, as shown above, and they're as functional as they are gorgeous!  The phones have a top-rated 21 MP camera (very important for bloggers!), all day battery, TurboPower for the world's fastest charging, and advanced water protection.  The phones are unlocked, so you can use the phone on any network, and you won't have to buy a new one if you switch carriers.  I don't know about y'all, but I am having major phone envy!!  If you're interested in more info, or just want to admire these beautiful and functional pieces of technology, you can do so here.

How do you express yourself?
Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Weekend Reading

Happy weekend, friends! This post is a little shorter than most, but I haven't been online much this week.  I feel like setting a personal requirement on how many links go in this thread totally defeats the purpose, so some weeks may be longer or shorter than others.  This week, I did something different, and included some of my posts, as well; they're italicized.  I've been doing some online shopping here and there, so I've included a few of my favorites at the bottom of this post in case you're in a shopping mood.

As always, I invite you to share your favorite links of the week with me in the comments!

What are you up to this weekend?  :)