July 25, 2017

Black Athleisure Look + My Summer Schedule.

      I make it pretty well known on the blog that I'm a big fan of discount online retailer Shein. However- one thing that I had never tried from Shein prior to now were any type of pants or leggings. The under $15 price on these worried me a little bit, but I was pleasantly surprised in how much I loved them! I'm styling them today in this athleisure look, and sharing a bit about what my summer routine outside of work has looked like.


Shein

Vermont Fashion Blogger

Nike Running Shoes Black Workout Clothes





Thank you to Nicholle from Nicholle Sophia for these photos!


This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!






      This is the perfect example of an outfit that I'd wear both to work, and then later to the gym. I love being able to wear athleisure outfits to work on days that I want to workout after! (The only difference is I would probably throw on a sweatshirt for work... no matter how casual your workplace is spaghetti straps in the office probably aren't a good idea- haha!) I still can't believe that these leggings from Shein are under $15. What a fantastic deal!


      Now to talk a little bit about my summer schedule... or perhaps I should say lack-thereof? Life-wise, everything for me was turned completely upside-down when I moved to Vermont in April to begin my post-grad career! I've struggled with time management throughout the past, and with having such a demanding work schedule I knew that I had to do something to organize my time outside of work. I read a great older blog post from one of my favorite bloggers, Katey from Chronicles of Frivolity, who said that after she graduated college and first lived on her own, something that helped her to organize her time was to designate each weekday for some sort of task or activity (outside of work hours). For example, some days for fitness classes, one day a week for errands/boring adult tasks, one day for appointments, one day for seeing girlfriends after work, etc. I thought this was such a great idea and initially I tried to implement this into my new life in Vermont. 


      Although it worked well at first, it fell apart kind of quickly for me. I talk more about this in my bi-monthly post-move updates, but I haven't really had much of a social life since I moved here, and when I do it's usual very infrequent and last minute plans. Something else that's been going on this summer too is that I've had a lot of company visiting. This has been a lot of fun and has helped to keep my spirits up, but as I don't get time off from work right now, squeezing in multiple visitors around my insane work schedule has proved to be a bit stressful. 


      All that goes to say- the little out-of-work schedule that I've made for myself has completely gone out the window! Including other things that I was enjoying doing after work, like cooking regular dinners and going to the gym a few times a week. Part of it is that work has really picked up- summer is the busiest time of the year for radio events. This week I work close to 60 hours! I've been feeling a bit burnt out between working so much and running my blog, that when I am home, I've been very unproductive and usually just mindlessly playing on my phone or sleeping. You know that you're burnt out when you don't even have the attention span some nights for Netflix- haha! Another thing is that on days when I do have energy after work, I've been trying to enjoy time by Lake Champlain outside. Vermont has such a short summer and I'm very much a hot weather person, so I feel like I'll have seriously guilt feelings to spend extra time indoors that I don't have to in these short warm weeks.


    So after all of that- my question to all of you is: how do you stay productive and on-track in your personal life in the summer months? Do you take a "summer vacation" from some things like cooking, apartment tasks, and the gym? Or do you still hold yourself accountable to your normal routine, even with a super busy work schedule (or two super busy work schedules in my case) and warm weather? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments! Doing this whole adulting thing is new to me, and I think we can all learn from each other! 



     After taking last week off, Midweek Ramblings + Recent Purchases + Current Wishlist will be back for tomorrow's Wednesday blog post! 








     God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)


     



July 24, 2017

NORDSTROM SALE 2017: Best Home Decor + $500 NORDSTROM GIVEAWAY!




      Today's giveaway is sponsored by Lili Allessandra. This post also contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Southern Belle in Training! 


      Today I'm sharing some home decor favorites from this year's Nordstrom Sale, as well as a $500 Nordstrom giveaway with some other great bloggers! I feel like homedecor is sometimes the category that gets forgotten about during the NSale, but there are also wonderful deals in this category, just like there are on clothing, shoes and accessories!









      Let me start this off by saying it's taking all of my willpower NOT to buy that adorable flamingo shower curtain! Aquamarine and hot pink are one of my favorite color combos, and I am just in love with it! (I got all new bathroom decor for my first apartment in Charlotte last year though, so I'm not quite overdue for a bathroom decor refresh yet. #meh #budgeting)  


      I think that the recipe tin and wine rack would both make such great bridal shower or wedding gifts! Those are the types of items that a bride might not think to put on a registry, but could both come in handy for a new apartment or house. 


     This sale could also be the perfect time to invest in some luxurious new bedding! Bedding is one of those things that can be such an expensive purchase, but the good news is when it's from a good brand, it will last for years and years to come. I love this gorgeous Lili Allessandra bedding which is included in the sale! 





     And now for the best part of today's post- the giveaway! In celebration of the recent launch of Lili Alessandra a maker of fine linens and soft furnishings on Nordstrom.com. I have partnered with a few of my favorite bloggers to give away a $500 Nordstrom gift card! Simply enter below by completing the Rafflecopter. You’ll receive one entry per completion. This giveaway is open internationally and ends on 8/7. Winner will be announced here. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



     God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)


July 21, 2017

NORDSTROM SALE 2017: Styling My Purchases!

      In past years, it's been hard for me to be excited about buying fall clothes in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, because when living in the South it honestly didn't get that cold until late November. But now that I will be spending this fall season in Vermont, I'm expecting a very chilly fall! My fall wardrobe definitely needs some upgrades, so I was especially excited for this year's sale.


Kennebunk Beaches

NSale 2017

Maine Fashion Blogger


BP Nordstrom Sale

Nubble Lighthouse


Photography by my mom! 



This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training! 









      I decided to bring my Nordstrom Sale clothing purchases home on my quick trip to Maine last weekend! The weather was sunny and beautiful while I was home, however being on the Maine Coast it does tend to get a little breezy at night- even in the height of summer! So it was the perfect weather to style this NSale outfit- I didn't feel hot or sweaty at all while wearing this! The first few pictures were taken near a beach in my hometown (the road that leads to that beach is tree and field lined and just beautiful in the golden hour!), and the last few were taken by Nubble Lighthouse in York Beach, Maine! 


      Some of you might remember that I did a little try-on haul with this outfit on my IG stories (@miss_alk) last week. At first I was unsure if I wanted to keep this Lush blouse. So many bloggers had raved about it, but when I first tried it on I was really unsure if I liked the fit and style on myself. But- I decided to sleep on it and think it over, and in the end I decided to keep it!! I think it is a good staple piece that will match a lot in my closet. I always get so much use out of my white tops- so another is always a good investment! 


     I am just in love with these AG Jeans from the Nordstrom Sale! I've tried on AG Jeans before and fell in love with them, but I could never pull the trigger to splurge on a pair of $200+ denim when I lived in a warm climate and also was on a college budget. However- the sale price on these and the fact that I'll be living in jeans this fall and winter in Vermont convinced me to make the splurge, and I'm so glad I did! They're also my first pair of raw hem jeans, and I like them more than I thought I did. 








     So TODAY is the DAY that the Nordstrom Sale is open to everyone!!! This means that you no longer need a Nordstrom credit or debit card to shop the sale. It also means though that items will really start selling out fast, so now is the time to buy if you see something that you like! Some favorites are linked below:






     Happy Shopping!



     God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on air!)


July 20, 2017

NORDSTROM SALE 2017: Best Beauty Picks.

     I'm jumping back into Nordstrom Sale posts for the next few days here on the blog!! Today we're talking all things beauty. (If you're already sick of the NSale, be sure to check out Monday and Tuesday's posts from this week, which are 100% unrelated to the NSale! 😉)





This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training!



      I didn't actually end up purchasing any beauty buys in this year's sale, BUT there are lots of great deals from many beauty brands that I do love and am familiar with. For today's sale round-up post, I'll be sharing all of those NSale deals from the brands that I do like and have used before! 








  •      1. Voluspa Candle Set - These candles smell amazingly, and the packaging is so cute and chic! Swoozie's, a Southern stationery and gifting store, used to sell these, and during my senior year of college I remember stocking up on these candles for a few girlfriends' Christmas gifts. They were a big hit! I think this candle set is such a great deal to get either for yourself, or to buy ahead now for Christmas gifts.
  •      2. Winky Lux Lip Set - Last Fall, I got to attend a blogger event in Charlotte sponsored by Winky Lux, and that's where I was first introduced to this brand! I've since had the chance to try many of their products. This is a fun little lip kit!
  •      3. Chanel Nude Gloss Set - Normally Chanel lip glosses individually are priced at $37 a piece! That's pretty steep for just a lip gloss. I don't normally spend that much on makeup,  but I have a fun story about how I bought my first Chanel gloss. During my junior year of college, I had to do a few group projects throughout a semester in one of my classes for my major with two exchange students. They were siblings, and both studying at my university. The guy had a formal event to attend back in his home country during winter break, and since he knew about my fashion blog, he asked me to come suit shopping with him to give my fashion advice to pick out a suit to bring home! I kept telling him that my "expertise" was in women's fashion on a budget, not men's suits, but he insisted I go help, so I did! Anyways, he found a suit and ended up spending so much money as Macy's that he got some money back in a promotion that they were doing in gift cards. However, he was going to be away in his home country during the whole time they were valid! He gave the $40 gift vouchers to me to thank me for helping him pick out the suit. I used them to buy my very first Chanel lip gloss! It's not something I ever could have afforded to buy on my own as a college student with a babysitter's salary, so it was such a luxurious treat! I loved that lip gloss dearly. It was in a nude shade, and wore beautifully. It is a good deal to buy the Chanel gloss set in the NSale since they're so expensive individually!
  •       4. Jo Malone Perfume Set - This is the only item I'm sharing that I actually strongly dislike! Naturally, you're probably wondering why I am sharing it (fair question). My mom is a huge fan of Jo Malone. She loves their fragrances and owns several. As much as I don't like the scents, my mom loves them, and I know many other people who love them too. I think these are kind of an either you love them or you don't perfume, but hey! If you DO love them- this is a great deal to stock up on them! 
  •       5. Makeup Storage Caddy - I own two of these that are a similar style from the Container Store (Miss that place so much! I used to love the Charlotte one.), but this is a great deal on one of these types of makeup storage caddies! I think every girl needs something like this for everyday makeup favorites! 
  •       6. Nars Lip Crayon Set -  These lip crayons from Nars were the birthday gift at Sephora a couple years ago, and I loved them! This would be a great way to try a few different colors.
  •      7. Clinique Chubby Stick Set - I used to wear a lot more Clinique makeup in high school, it's a brand that I'm definitely overdue for trying out again! Anyways, several years ago, I received a Chubby Stick sample with a Clinique highlighter purchase. It was one of my favorite lip samples I've ever received! Not really sure why I never bought a full-sized one when the sample ran out. Like the Nars Lip Crayon set, this would be a great way to try out different colors from the collection.


      Have you bought any beauty products from the Nordstrom sale yet? Or just found any good new beauty products in general? Share with me in the comments! 😊


      In tomorrow's post I'll be styling the outfit that I purchased from the NSale and sharing my thoughts on each piece! TOMORROW is also the day that the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale opens to the public, so if you don't have a Nordstrom card, this will be your chance to shop finally!!! 







      God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

July 18, 2017

I Tried LipSense - My Honest Review!

     I'm so excited about today's beauty post! I finally had the chance to test and review the lip product that everyone is talking about the social media is buzzing over!! My honest thoughts all about LipSense are in today's post. 




LipSense in Kiss For A Cause c/o Smooch by April


     Every couple years, there seems to be a new MLM (multi-level marketing) product that takes America by storm. When I was growing up, it was Silpada jewelry. This was in the days before social media, but it seemed like everyone and their mother, at least in my small Maine hometown, was having a jewelry party. In fact- I actually remember tagging along with my mom to a Siplada jewelry party, as a mom of one of my friends growing up was selling the jewelry. One of my very first pairs of earrings ended up being from Silpada.


     A notable MLM company was the Jamberry Nail Wraps craze a couple years ago. I actually was sent some of those to review in a really old blog post (check it out here to see something old and embarrassing haha!), and I tried them out on my toes. I gave them a positive review at the time on my blog, but after ordering some more on my own (I was also invited to a Jamberry party later that summer) and trying them on my nails, I realized they didn't actually work that well. That experience kind of dulled my views on MLM companies, and honestly I didn't pay attention to many on social media from then on.... until LipSense!


      In the past few months, a magical-seeming lip product called LipSense started popping into my Instagram feed on a daily basis. I also started receiving a lot of DMs from random girls on Instagram who are distributors and wanted me to sign up for them and become a distributor too... which was quite annoying. Honestly at first I was just blown away by how much this lip product had suddenly inserted itself into my social media feeds! But then I noticed something.... bloggers that I have followed for a long time (I'm talking years!), were starting to rave about LipSense and become distributors. Normally bloggers are very anti MLM companies (How many bloggers have you seen selling Mary Kay or It Works wraps for example), so it peaked my interested that so many girls that I knew were becoming distributors. Just a few included- Jessica from J Petite, Stephanie from Stephanie Drenka, and Jenny from Breakfast at Lilly's (one of my co-admins for The Millennial Blogger Network!).


     Then I noticed this spring that one of my absolute all-time favorite bloggers, April from Smidge of This (formally A. Liz Adventures) was selling LipSense and raving about it. If you don't follow April, she is a Charlotte-based lifestyle blogger who I've followed for YEARS now, and you absolutely need to stop what you're doing right now and follow her blog! April posts bargain finds, tons of photos of her two adorable daughters, things to do in Charlotte, recipes, and so much more. Truly- her blog is one of my favorite daily reads! Anyways, if there is anyone who I would trust a recommendation from- it is 100% her! Long story short- I messaged April on Facebook, and that lead to today's blog post! She generously sent me a LipSense color and gloss from her stock to try out and review. I've never been so excited to do a beauty review post, and I tried my LipSense out the day that it came in the mail! April sent me the beautiful fuchsia pink color "Kiss For a Cause," and I loved the shade since it reminded me of some other favorite lipsticks I have. 






     One of the main reasons that I wanted to write this blog post and do this review is because when trying to first research LipSense on my own after seeing it on social media so much, every blog post review and article that I found seemed to be written by a distributor! I'm all for salespeople who love what they sell, but it did seem a bit biased to me that it was hard to find any reviews not written by women who don't sell it. So here I am today, setting out to change that!! Above you can see a couple photos of the application process, and here are my pros and cons after trying and testing LipSense over the last couple weeks:


Pros:

  • It lives up to its promises: This is obviously the biggest reason that I liked it! If you've seen any distributors posting about the product online, you will see them boasting about how LipSense is the ultimate long-wearing lip product, and that it's smudge proof, waterproof, and extremely long lasting (like 12+ hours). I'm here to attest that, yes, that's ALL true! I was blown away when I first put on the bold shade of Kiss For a Cause that it really wouldn't transfer over to clothing, food, etc once it was on my lips, but it doesn't! That stuff stays put. It even lasted fairly well through my showers, so that's how I know it is pretty waterproof! I love a product that lives up to its claims, and so for me that automatically makes the $55 price point (for a starter kit with a distributor) worth it. I was so, so impressed.
  • The color variety: LipSense comes in 40+ colors- most are in the permanent collection, but other colors are limited edition for certain seasons to keep things fun! 
  • A little goes a LONG way: You only have to use a tiny bit of LipSense color and gloss to get the desired effects, so even though it does have a higher price point than drugstore makeup brands, one tube of color can last you months and months! I'm all for longevity in makeup products.

Cons:
  • Selling out: Based on the current business structure of Sengence and the huge success of this product (the company that owns LipSense), it can sometimes be hard for distributors to get certain colors all the time. I guess this just further proves how much in high demand this is!
  • Hard to get remains off: LipSense does sell a special remover to take off their product called Oops! Remover, although I haven't tried that yet. Since it is SO long-lasting, I did find that sometimes hard to get off all the color at the end of the day after washing my face. I guess that's a good problem to have though? Haha!
  • Tricky application process: LipSense has a very specific application process for it to work properly. You have to apply it in certain coats and layers (not like applying regular lipstick). However- April included instructions in my order, and there are tons of Youtube tutorials! I personally found this one helpful. I found my LipSense easy to apply over my lunch break in the bathroom at work, and of course at home in my own bathroom, however I don't think this is something you could apply at a traffic light while driving, or in a hurry!


     In my unbiased, non distributor opinion.... I will tell y'all that I LOVED this product and it exceed my expectations!! I totally get why a lot of girls that try it end up signing to be distributors. I actually had a long conversation with April about what that would look like for me if I decided to do it too, since I do believe in this product. I decided against becoming a distributor right now, as things are really picking up at my day job (summer is the radio busy season for events!), so I didn't feel like I had the time to take on a new business venture. But I hope to continue supporting April and the other bloggers that I follow who are distributors! You can totally love LipSense and not sell it. 😉


     If you would like to purchase LipSense, you can do so through April's Facebook group or her business Instagram page


 
      Have you tried LipSense yet? Did you like it? Or have any other MLM companies pleasantly surprised you recently? Speaking of those... Mary Kay was a sponsor at the blogging conference I went to last year, and I recently tried the concealer that they gifted all of the bloggers. It is fantastic! I might have to order more at some point.


      God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

July 17, 2017

Bird-of-Paradise Skirt + 3 Books I Read This Month.

     Bird- of-paradise have always been one of my favorite plants. Growing up, my mom had a big painting hanging in our living room of these colorful flowers, so it sparked my interest in them from a young age. When I saw that this skirt was just covered with them, I knew I had to have it!







Thank you to Nicholle from Nicholle Sophia for taking these photos!



This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training.






     Good morning from Maine! Being new in radio, I don't really get time off at my job this year, but my boss gave me Sunday off so I was able to come home for a very quick trip Sunday/Monday for my mom's birthday, which is today. (If you wish her a happy birthday in the comments she will see it- she's one of Southern Belle in Training's biggest fans!) I'm heading back to Vermont tonight, but hoping to stop first in Manchester, NH, to do some shopping at stores that we don't have in the Burlington area!

       This skirt is such a vibrant, colorful piece that it just screamed my name! Not only is it covered in beautiful bird-of-paradise flowers, but it also has such a ladylike style and fit to it. Pairing it with a black dressy camisole and block sandals gives it an elegant but still fun look. I love it! This is definitely a classic summery "Annaliese" look. 😊


     Back in May, I shared the three library books that I had read that month. Since I have been trying to read more for fun since getting a library card here in Vermont, I thought I would do that again! Here are the three books that I've read in June/July:


     *Good Luck by Whitney Gaskell: This book is what I would categorize as a "classic beach read." It's about a woman named Lucy, who by complete chance ends up winning a huge jackpot in the Florida lottery. The lottery ends up changing her life a lot more than she anticipates, and through a series of new experiences and lessons she learns all about the ups and downs of being a lottery winner. I didn't love this book but I didn't dislike it either. This would be a good one to take with you on a beach or lake house vacation if all you're doing is reading lots of books for a week, but it's not memorable enough to read if you don't have a lot of time to read for fun.


     *Beach Town by Mary Kay Andrews: I was initially really excited about this book, because in May's book review post I had read my first Mary Kay Andrews book and really enjoyed it. Unfortunately, this one was really a snooze. I only finished it because I only don't finish books unless they're terrible, but by the end I was kind of forcing myself to get through. This book is about a woman named Greer who works as a location scout for Hollywood movies, and she is sent to a remote beach town in Florida to scout for an upcoming movie. The movie ends up shooting there, and over time a complicated romance and some family drama develops for Greer outside of her crazy work life. I thought this book would be so fascinating being about an old Florida beach town and the movie industry, but I found it to be so predictable and honestly quite boring. I wouldn't recommend it!


     *Touch and Go by Lisa Gardner: I decided to check my first thriller ever out at the library after reading so many of Caitlin from Southern Curls and Pearl's book reviews. She has raved about the thriller genre, and Lisa Gardner as an author, so I decided to try one of her books. And OMG- I LOVED this book! I stayed up until almost 2 am reading it the same night I brought it home from the library. This was a very intense book with a lot of graphic violence scenes, but it had the most insane plot. I also liked Touch and Go since it was set in New England. To say a little bit of the plot without spoiling it: an entire wealthy family in the Boston area is kidnapped one night, with no ransom and no leads on who might have done it. This book goes back and forth between the perspective of the kidnapped wife, and one of the female private investigators who is working on the case back in Boston to find the family. 
      


     These books and my outfit are linked below:







     Just wanted to remind y'all as well that the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale giveaway that I'm hosting with several other bloggers, which I first posted about last Monday, is still going on!! It's not too late to enter. This giveaway is open internationally and runs until 7/24. Winner will be announced here. Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



     Tomorrow I'll be sharing an honest review post of LipSense - which might be 2017's most talked about beauty product! And then on Wednesday I'll be reviewing my NSale puchases in my Midweek Ramblings post!



    God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (Charlotte XO)


   

July 14, 2017

$7 T-Shirt Dress + My "Adulting" To-Do List

     Today I'm sharing a SUPER affordable and light t-shirt dress that's perfect for summer! I also thought it would be useful (really for my benefit- ha!) to write my "adulting" to-do list for the rest of the month here on the blog. I used to do monthly goals post like lots of other bloggers do a few years ago, and although I didn't keep up with those, I did find it held myself accountable to write them out in public on my blog every month. I have a lot of more boring adult tasks that I NEED to do that I've been putting off, so what better way to ensure they get done than share them with y'all? 😉








Thanks to Nicholle from Nicholle Sophia for these photos!


This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training.





      First, let's talk about this dress. It is $7. Yes, I repeat a little louder for all those in the back. $7!! It's from Shein, which as many of you know is one of my favorite discount retailers. Normally I do stay away from buying items made of polyester on Shein, since I've found through experience that those don't hold up as well after many wears and washes. However, the polyester items usually have the under $10 price tags, like this dress. For the price, I think this dress is great for $7! Since it is polyester, it probably won't last forever, but if you get a couple months in the summer of wear out of this, isn't that still pretty good for $7? I promise in the next month or two I'll try and get a detailed Shein review post up soon. I really am overall a big fan of the website for affordable trendy pieces!


     On my lips you might notice a beautiful radiant pink lip color... I'm currently testing out Lip Sense! Mine was gifted to me by from the sweetest Charlotte based distributor, Smooch by April. You might also know her as one of my favorite lifestyle bloggers, April of Smidge of This! Expect a full and honest review of Lip Sense coming to the blog next week. 


      Now for the other part of this blog post- my adulting "to-do" list. I originally wanted to call this post "Adult things," but I changed it to "adulting" because I thought saying "adult" made me think of sketchy "adult bookstores" for some reason- haha!! Don't want there to be any confusion so adulting it is. Basically- I've had a growing to-do list in my life outside of my day job and the blog, but since those two things keep me so busy, I keep pushing the personal life to-do list aside as the days go by. I've decided to hold myself accountable by sharing everything here. Hopefully this will inspire me to tackle everything within the next couple of weeks, and maybe even inspire some of you to tackle those tedious adulting tasks as well:


  • Find a doctor and dentist in Vermont: This is probably one of the worst things about moving out-of-state. Ugh. In college, I still had most of these types of appointments when I went home to Maine, so I didn't go through this whole process of finding medical care in NC until about this time last year. I had just found great doctors (and also a good counselor, who really helped with some things that I was dealing with in my personal life last year), so it is crazy to me that I have to go through this whole search process AGAIN a year later! And of course it's not as easy as just calling an office to see if they're taking new patients... you have to make sure they take your insurance, and schedule appointments around work, and find old medical record, etc. Can you see why I've been putting this off? But enough is enough! 
  • Finish unpacking and organizing my kitchen: I would say my kitchen is about 80% unpacked. The boxes that I moved stuff in with are for the most part long gone. But I still haven't organized everything to my liking, as the layout is somewhat different than my apartment in NC. I also don't have a pantry in this kitchen, so I have to divide the kitchen cabinet space equally between dishes and appliances and my food. I still hadn't found an organization system that I like, and a lot of my kitchen stuff sits out on the counter by my mixer all the time, which is getting old!
  • Clean my dining room table: Gosh I didn't mean for these all to be cleaning related! Haha. I've done a better job than I expected with keeping my new apartment organized, but my dining room table is where I throw all of my junk, and I want to kick that habit early! 
  • Write ALL passwords to everything in a book: #TBT to the good ol' internet days circa 2009 when I could get away with using the same two passwords in rotation for everything! RIP - those days are definitely long gone. After a very frustrating phone call last week to one of my bank's customer service numbers because I couldn't remember my online password (I was mixing it up with the password to my OTHER bank!), I realized it's probably time that I take a day, sit down, and do inventory of ALL online passwords. To everything. Personal accounts, work accounts, blog accounts, financial accounts, shopping websites, travel.... anything and everything. But it needs to be done! No matter how many times you hit "remember password" on your browser, sometimes it just doesn't remember them, and it's also safest to have different passwords for everything (yet harder for your brain of course). I think it would be best to keep log of them in a physical book instead of  on a computer document, should my computer God forbid ever be hacked or lost. 
  • Call one of my credit card companies to understand statements: I opened a new credit card a couple months ago, and I've had the hardest time understanding the statements. With other cards that I've had, I've never had any trouble reading the statements and understanding everything, but with this card the statements are just very confusing. I keep putting off calling the company to try and get more information about how to using their website... because who likes calling customer service? But it's getting to the point where I literally can't read these and I don't know which payment was which, so I know I need to call! I pride myself and having a very high credit score, and I don't want that to be affected at all based on not being able to read statements! 
  • Clean my car: I cleaned my car from top to bottom before the big move in April... just three months later and it's already so messy and disorganized again. I know I'll have zero motivation to clean it when it's -20 degrees with three feet of snow on the ground come winter, so now when it's warm out is my chance to do it!


      So that is my adulting to-do list of things I've been procrastinating on! Hold me accountable, y'all! I'll try and update in a few weeks about how many I've accomplished.


     Just a reminder- the Nordstrom Sale began YESTERDAY! Check out some fall fashion favorites in yesterday's blog post, and some are linked below as well:








     God Bless,


     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

July 13, 2017

NORDSTROM SALE 2017: Fall Fashion Essentials + What I Purchased!

     Happy Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2017!! Aka "Blogger Christmas" to some fashion bloggers.  I planned to wake up at 3 am today to put together this post for y'all... but I ended up needing to "sleep in" until 4:45 am, so forgive this being a little late. 😉 I'm sharing what I think are the best fall fashion picks from this year's sale (And most are under $100! Many under $50 as well), and also sharing what I purchased this morning!!

Nordstrom Sale 2017, Fall Fashion Essentials NSale



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Fall Dresses Tops Nordstrom Sale 2017







     This is a great time to stock up on tops and dresses for fall! The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale always has a great variety of these. I finally caved this year and bought this year's version of the Lush blouse that is sold in every year's sale. It seems like such a versatile top and after looking at it for a few years, I think I'll like it! 











1. AG Jeans // 2. Faux Leather Leggings // 3. Hudson Jeans // 4. (7) For All Mankind Jeans // 5. BP. Jeans // 6. BP. Leggings //





      Living in the South for the last five years, denim wasn't something I splurged on. Sure, it does get cold in the Carolinas sometimes in the winter, but overall it's so mild throughout the year! I am such a dress and skirt girl that I took full advantage of that through the year (and wearing sweater dresses in winter), so I never felt the need to splurge on nice jeans. $200+ jeans also didn't fit into a college budget- let's be real y'all! But now that I live in such a cold part of New England, I'll be wearing denim and other long pants for most of the year! I've tried on AG Jeans before and thought they were SO comfortable, I just could never justify buying them full price. I was so thrilled to see some AG Jeans in this year's Nordstrom Sale! I bought my first pair and am so excited for them to get here. There are tons of other great denim and other pant options in this year's sale too!







      






1. Bright Checkered Scarf // 2. Pastel Checkered Scarf // 3. Plaid Scarf // 4. Poncho // 5. Tan Booties // 6. Grey Studded Booties // 7. Taupe Cut Out Booties // 8. Tory Riding Boots Black // 9. Tory Riding Boots Brown // 10. OTK Boots // 




      Whenever I think of the Nordstrom Sale, I always think of Tory Burch Riding Boots, because that's what I purchased when shopping in my first-ever NSale a few years ago! This was one of the first designer splurges that I ever bought myself, and I saved up for about a year to buy these boots. Isn't it the best feeling when you save money for so long to make a big purchase, and then finally do it?! I bought a second pair in the brown shade last year (my first pair were black), and these boots are pretty much all I wear in the fall! Back in NC, where snow wasn't really an issue in the winter, I honestly exclusively wore these boots from October-March every year! I would HIGHLY recommend getting yourself a pair if you don't have any yet (I'll probably be buying a third pair next year), and I also HIGHLY recommend getting them before the sale opens to the public next week!

     There are also some other great fall boots and scarves in the sale this year! Great deals on the scarves especially. I was so excited to see a BP. version of this bright checkered blanket scarf! Zara made the original version and I bought it in NYC last fall. (I styled it in this blog post!







WHAT I PURCHASED IN THE 2017 SALE:



     Happy Early Access for the sale, y'all! As much fun as it is to shop the Nordstrom Sale and as much as bloggers to promote it- I always do want to remind my readers that it is just a sale. Don't spend above your means, don't buy just to buy, and just have fun with it! It is a great time to stock up on some essential items and pieces for the upcoming fall and winter months, but if nothing floats your boat, that's okay too. Two years ago, I was studying abroad in France when the sale kicked off. Do you think that year I woke up at 3/4 am to start shopping? NOPE!! And did I survive? YES! 😉 I will continue to provide more sale content to y'all throughout the next few weeks, but is this the only thing I'll be posting about- nope!! Tomorrow's post isn't related to the sale at all actually!




    God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

July 12, 2017

Midweek Ramblings + Recent Purchases + Current Wishlist.





{Enjoying bubble tea in Montreal last week! One of my favorite treats to have when I travel. Follow me on social media @miss_alk!}


This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training.



Ramblings:

     Change of Montreal Plans: Just one rambling today- but it's a bit of a story! I shared last week that my former roommate from Charlotte, Ciera, was here visiting, and that we had something exciting happening in Montreal during her time here. Well- the "something exciting" ended up being a very good lesson that nothing ever goes as planned! 😉 Since 2014, Ciera and I have tried to see either a concert or theatre production together every year. Our tradition started with a Christian concert, and last year was seeing Britney Spears in Vegas with our friend Priyanka, so as you can see we don't exactly have a specific type of show in mind for this tradition- ha! We just like seeing some sort of a live production together. This year, we bought tickets to see Pitbull and Enrique Inglesias in Montreal. They're on tour together right now, and it worked out so well that they had a show booked for Montreal. I was amazingly able to change around my work schedule and get the night off for the concert, as well as the next day (and I do NOT have a flexible schedule with work right now so this was huge!), so everything seemed perfect! Ciera booked her flight and we were good to go.
      We headed out on Wednesday afternoon after I got out of work for Montreal. At the border, the border patrol agent started giving us a hard time about the concert, and (successfully) convinced us it had been cancelled. After a very stressful few minutes with him, he admitted he was joking and wished us a fun night in the city. We continued driving, and I switched over to a Montreal radio station. Within a few minutes of doing that, a DJ came on, and announced that the Enrique and Pitbull show had been CANCELLED! Ciera and I seriously thought that we were being pranked or something. First the border patrol agent messed with us, and less then an hour later we hear the show is cancelled... by chance on the radio?! As soon as we got to the hotel and had wifi, I saw I had an email waiting from the box office that did confirm the show had been cancelled last minute and postponed.
      Well- we made the most of the situation and still had a whirlwind and fun 24 hours in Montreal! We were able to see a lot more than we would have been able to had we gone to the show. I'll be writing a Montreal travel guide soon here on the blog! But I just think it's too funny how we were so close to Montreal before the show was announced that it was rescheduled. It just goes to show to always leave flexibility in your plans for changes!



Purchases:

  • We were able to do some shopping in Montreal thanks to not having a concert to go to! In addition to purchasing the Canada and Montreal mugs for my Starbucks mug collection, I also found the cutest pair of hot pink dress pants at Zara on sale. I looked and looked online to find something similar. I wasn't able to find anything right now- but hopefully there will be a dupe by the time I style them for the blog!

Wishlist:
  • The Nordstrom Sale Early Access begins TOMORROW! Right now my wishlist is looking like NSale, NSale and more NSALE! Here are some things that I'll be looking for in the sale and hoping to find a good deal on: 
  1. Kendra Scott (The NSale is a GREAT time to get a good deal on Kendra jewelry!)
  2. Fall tops and sweaters for cooler weather in New England 
  3. Designer jeans
  4. Fall booties
  5. A Tory Burch tote for work (I don't believe one of these was listed in the NSale catalogue- but hey you never know! Sometimes there are surprises)


     I hope that y'all are having a great week! My first NSale post will be up tomorrow, and an outfit post will be up on Friday! 😊



     God Bless,



     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)