Showing posts from August, 2013

Book Review: A Simple Change by Judith Miller

A Simple Change by Judith Miller is the story of Jancey Rhoder, a young woman who works as a teacher in Kansas City. When her mother's illness takes a turn for the worse, Jancey's parents make the decision to leave their home and business and return to the Amana Colonies. Jancey's parents were members of the Amana Colonies many years ago, so they know what to expect, but Jancey isn't sure what her life will be like if she decides to leave Kansas City. Despite this uncertainty, Jancey leaves her job and life in Kansas City behind to go with her parents and spend additional time with her mother. Jancey is being courted by a young man in Kansas City, Nathan, who is not pleased by her decision. When Jancey arrives in the colonies, she has a hard time adjusting to some of the changes, while she enjoys and appreciates some of the others. As Jancey adjusts to life in the Amana Colonies, she finds herself drawn into unexpected relationships and mysteries - making her life in A…

August Clothing Budget

Before I start on my August budget, I have a few updates to the July budget! The ThredUp dress I bought last month didn't work out at all, so I sold that on Ebay. I tried to purchase another shirt from eShakti, and that didn't fit, so I am selling that on Ebay, too! If you're keeping track from the July roundup, that makes a total of 5 misses and returns. I think I am planning to stick to Kohl's and Target for my future dress shopping - at least those stores are local so I can return things easily. I also bought this tote from Target for 70% off (no longer available), so that took the place of the floral dress in my July budget. I ended up at around $52.00 for July.

This month, I found some nice items at Goodwill, including a dark olive jacket with some military-inspired details.

I have discovered that proportionate to my budget, I spend too much on scarves and jewelry - they're so pretty and they're only $5!! - and I need to focus more on filling actual gaps …

What I Wore: Thrifted

I've had some luck with finding a couple of nice pieces from Goodwill lately - and both of them were the 50% off tag color, which almost never happens!

This jade green cardigan was my first find. I love the color and it is in great shape!

Sweater: Worthington (Goodwill), White Blouse: Mossimo, Pants: Merona (Goodwill), Flats: Payless, Bracelet: Shabby Apple

This Lands' End navy blue dress was my second find. I really didn't need a navy dress, but this one is so pretty and well made. There are rows of pintucks down the front and back and other details that make it a great choice. It is sleeveless, so I think it will work with shirts underneath, too. It is a bit shorter than I normally wear, but in the fall, tights and boots will make it comfortable for work.

Dress: Lands' End (Goodwill), Jacket: Emma James (ThredUp), Necklace: Dayspring, Sandals: Born, Bracelet: Shabby Apple

Tee: Merona, Capris: Bandolino Blu, Sandals: Born, Necklace: Not sure! Either Avon or Penney'…

August Makeup Look: Colorful Eyes and Bright Pink Lips

As part of being an Avon Makeup Maven, we are periodically given different makeup challenges. This month, we were putting together a look that had either colorful eye liner or bright pink lips - so I combined the two to get the following look!

I tend to favor subtle, neutral colors, but I always like shades of purple and plum for eye makeup, too. I can see recreating this look with a green or olive liner and a peach or neutral lip color. What are your favorite makeup trends you are seeing for late summer and fall? Products used: Eyes: True Color Eyeshadow Quad in Romantic Mauves - Mauved on lid, Pink Slip above lid, Glimmersticks Plum Pearl liner with Gold Plum Eyeshadow on top Lips: Ultra Glazewear in Palm Beach Pink

Late Summer and Early Fall 2013 Wishlist

Fall 2013 Wishlist by gracenote30

Back to school time always makes me start looking at and thinking about fall clothes! I've always loved fall clothes, especially sweaters and the darker, richer colors. I've been thinking about what pieces I am going to be looking for in the next couple months and I came up with a mini wishlist. I'd love to find some of these pieces at Goodwill, but time will tell!
1. Black Blazer - I need a black blazer or cardigan. I haven't had one in my wardrobe for awhile and I know it would be worn all the time.  
2. Jewel-Toned Tee - Colored tees are so versatile and I could definitely use one or two new colors.
3. Colored Cardigan - I love cardigans and think I'd get a lot of wear out of a burgundy one.
4.  Solid Colored Skirt - The shape, draping, and color of this skirt are really pretty and seems like it could  be worn in many ways.
5. Olive Skinnies - I'd love black, tan, or olive skinnies to wear with flats and boots!
6. Print Dress - I h…

What I Wore: New Accessories

Sometimes a new necklace or a scarf can help perk up basics or inspire a new outfit combination. A couple weekends ago, my friend sent me a text and told me Charming Charlie had 50% off their clearance items. We made a trip over there, and I got a scarf and 2 necklace sets for around $11.00. The scarf is perfect for summer to late fall. It is full of green, plum, pink, and orange on a taupe background and has a bird and butterfly print! I also got an orange necklace set and the black flower necklace set shown in the second photo.

Plum Tee: Merona, Skirt: Merona (Goodwill), Scarf: Charming Charlie, Sandals: Born

Blouse: 212 Collection (Goodwill), Pants: Limited (garage sale), Shoes: Payless, Necklace: Charming Charlie This snakeskin print blouse is one of my favorite Goodwill finds of the summer. It mixes and matches well with lots of other pieces and will be great with jackets and cardigans this fall and winter. What are your go to accessories? I'm linking up! 

I Feel Pretty at…

Back to School Clothing Haul from Kohl's

I've mentioned that I have a girl starting Kindergarten in a couple of weeks! We purchased most of her school supplies already but there are so many cute clothes in the stores right now!

My mom wanted to buy Anna a back to school outfit - a tradition my Grandma did with me for many years. We went to a couple of stores at the mall and found a cute outfit - leggings, skirt, and top - which we purchased. The outfit cost over $35, which we both thought was expensive.

I spent some time looking through my daughter's wardrobe that afternoon and took a bunch of photos of potential school outfits. We're trying to remix her clothes, too, so we identified a few things that she needed (solid leggings and skorts, and a pink tee) to help make some more outfits. I'm still deciding if I'll print out the pictures and put them in an album for her to look at or if having them in a file folder on the computer desktop will work.

We headed out to Kohl's that evening with our $10 …

New Avon Color Collection

I've talked about Avon here in the blog in the past. I've been an Avon rep for a long time now...over 8 years! I use quite a few of their color products, so I am really excited about the new Avon color products being released in Campaign 19.

The collection includes new packaging and colors for the eyeshadows, Ultra Color Rich lipsticks, and Ultra Glazewear lipglosses. One of the big features of these new products is the "true color technology" - the colors you see are the colors you get when you put them on your eyes and lips.

I decided to purchase some of the new collection as a preview in my last order and am really pleased with the products! I chose the Romantic Mauves True Color Eyeshadow Quad and Ultra Glazewears in Intense Plum and Creamy Nude. I was looking for some neutral shades that would carry over into fall. I have a pretty simple makeup routine and usually only take about 5 minutes to put on my makeup in the morning.

The eyeshadow colors are beautiful.…

What I Wore: Capsule Outfits

I've been wearing outfits put together from the late summer capsule that I put together and posted last week. It's been very cool for August here in Ohio and I've been adding lots of scarves, cardigans, and jackets, especially in the morning and inside. I did wear the black dress from the capsule yesterday, but didn't get a picture of it. On to the outfits!
Olive tee: Target, Skinnies: Elle (Garage sale), Scarf: Charming Charlie, Sandals: Born, Earrings: Avon

Close up of the scarf and earrings - these Avon earrings are really old, but I love all the colors in them!

Grey tee: Sonoma, Green skinnies: Jennifer Lopez, Necklace: JCPenney, Flats: Target

Denim Jacket: Lands' End (This jacket is so old, I'm thinking I need to keep an eye out for a replacement!)

I like wearing blue and green together, so this necklace gets a lot of wear.

Khakis: Lands' End, Flats: Payless, Lilac Tee: Merona (ThredUp), Scarf: Gift, Bracelet and Earrings: Avon

No idea why this one c…


This is the year our daughter officially starts Kindergarten! We've given our schooling options lots of thought: public, private, and homeschool - even as recently as last week! None of the choices seem perfect for us, but we've decided on the best choice for us this year. In a couple weeks, Anna will be starting Kindergarten at our local public school. She's extremely social and very excited about going to school.

We feel like this decision will work well for us, but as parents, we do have some concerns. We recently had (another) school levy fail for our district, resulting in additional cuts of teachers, staff, and services. One big component of these cuts at the elementary level is that there will be no art, music, or gym classes by the "specials" teachers. The classroom teacher is responsible for teaching these subjects in addition to reading, math, science, social studies, etc.

My husband and I want to be as involved as possible in Anna's education, s…

Summer to Fall Capsule: Part 1

Seasonal transitions have always been difficult for me in terms of getting dressed. I am definitely feeling a shift in the weather here - cool in the mornings and evenings, but still hot and humid during the day. I've been brainstorming a summer to fall transition capsule wardrobe using pieces from my wardrobe. I came up with 18 pieces (not including shoes and accessories) and am hoping to use these items to help me put together a variety of late summer outfits over the next few weeks.

Summer to Fall Transition Capsule Wardrobe by gracenote30 featuring v neck tops Jackets, Cardigans, and Button Downs: 1. Denim Jacket, 2. Raspberry Cardigan, 3. Emerald Cardigan, 4. Pink Button Down, 5. Floral Chambray Dresses: 6. Black Dress Tops: 7. Grey V-Neck, 8. Black and White Striped 3/4 Sleeve, 9. Olive Tee, 10. Lilac Tee, 11. Snakeskin Blouse, 12. Gold Ruffled Blouse Bottoms: 13. Green Skinnies, 14. Black Dress Pants, 15. Dark Skinny Jeans, 16. Khaki Dress Pants, 17. Olive Dot Skirt, 18. Gray Tweed…

What I Wore: Basics

I don't know if it is the weather (getting cooler) or the end of summer or something else, but I have been reaching for easy basic pieces lately. It reminds me that I need to make sure that I have these core pieces in my wardrobe, because for me they simplify the process of getting dressed and looking polished and put together. You've been warned - nothing fancy this week!

Grey Tee: Kohl's, Necklace: JCPenney, Sandals: Born, Jeans: Elle (Garage Sale)

Striped Sweater: Christopher and Banks, Scarf: Kohl's, Jeans: Elle (Garage Sale), Boat Shoes: Target, Tote: Target ($10.48!), Sunglasses: Firmoo

Side view of the tote. :) I debated this tote for awhile even though it was 70% off. I have a ton of bags that I make and really didn't need another one. I did love the cognac color and style, plus the price tag. I saw a similar tote on Franish's July purchases, and went out and bought this one. I decided to wait and see if I had a reason to use it in the next month, or I …

July Finishes

It's been a hectic and challenging summer, but I've been trying hard to gain some momentum with my sewing. This month, I tried a visual to-do list on my sewing cabinet. You can see my post about it here.

So how did I do? Not as well as I would have liked, but I do have several finishes to report. I completed:
a striped knit infinity scarf (seen here)2 zip pouches (one available in the shop and one coming soon)a black and white knit tee (seen here)3 lunch napkins for my daughter's school lunch box (not on the original list) I also took one item off the list (linen-cotton dress) and am adding a couple for this month:
pajamas for me4 more lunch napkins and 4 reusable snack bags We will see what I get accomplished this month! Any finishes on your end?

I'm linking up!

Book Review: Prairie Song by Mona Hodgson

Prairie Song by Mona Hodgson is the first book in the Hearts Seeking Home series. This historical novel is set in 1866, immediately after the Civil War. Anna Goben, her mother, and her grandfather are devastated after the loss of Anna's brother in the Civil War. Anna decides that the best choice for them all is to join a wagon train and head toward California for a new start. Anna doesn't anticipate the difficulties she and her family will have as they travel West and the ways she will grow and change throughout her journey. She also isn't expecting the complication of Caleb Reger - a hand on the Boone's Lick Company Wagon Train.

I enjoyed this novel as I typically like historical fiction novels. The characters in the novel are dealing with many issues in their past as they look forward and try to begin anew. Love, loss, tragedy, and joy are all parts of their lives as they travel across the rural landscape. I feel the book does a good job of explaining and depicting w…