Unique Valentine’s Day Gift Idea: JORD Wood Watch Review and Giveaway

JORD makes a great Valentine's Day gift for men

I’ve got lots of homeschool stuff to blog about which I am really excited to share, but for now I wanted to do a quick break to help you out with a Valentine’s Day gift. I’m a last minute gift-giver so in honor of procrastinators everywhere I am sharing this JORD review and giveaway as a reminder that Valentine’s Day is around the corner.

unique gift for men Jord wood watch coupon

As long as I’ve known Jeff he’s worn a watch and I knew I wanted to get him one for our anniversary since his favorite was wearing out… but I’m avoiding leather when possible now that I’m (mostly) vegan. Also, I’m kind of terrible at picking out watches.

JORD swooped in and saved me.

JORD unique wood watches for men coupon and giveaway

Since first impressions are everything, JORD watches come in beautiful wooden box along with everything you need to care for your timepiece.

JORD makes a great Valentine's Day gift for men

 

Yes, the band is wood, not metal, and it has a soft smooth feel and nice weight. The wooden links are comfortable and don’t snag sweaters or arm hair like metal links can. Jeff loves it and it’s getting a lot of attention.  People are always complimenting his watch and kinda fascinated with the fact that it’s wood.

Actually, even though I never really wore a watch myself I kinda, desperately want one of these unique watches for myself. I’ve got my eye on the Frankie style.  JORD might have converted me.

 

Good news, thanks to JORD you can snag one for yourself!
CLICK here to enter to win your own JORD watch.

 

 

Watch Gift Ideas

Want one for yourself?
Shop women’s styles.
Shop men’s styles.

 

Special thanks to JORD for providing me a watch for this review and giveaway. All thoughts, and opinions are my own.

Day at Jamestown Settlement

Every once in awhile, usually as we are driving to Virginia Beach or somewhere south, I’d say out loud in the car, “we should really go to Jamestown.”   I hadn’t been in about 25 years, but I did remember Jamestown Settlement capturing my imagination as a kid.

So, finally, we packed in the car and went.

Jamestown Settlement is a living history museum just down the road from Historic Jamestown (the actual historic site).  At Jamestown Settlement, you can walk through a recreation of the Jamestown fort along with a Powhatan Indian village and the three ships which first sailed to Jamestown in 1607: the Susan Constant, Discovery, and Godspeed.

The museum ticket also includes a film which we skipped because 3 out of the 5 of us don’t really sit well for these kinds of things.   We’ve talked about Jamestown at length before we went so we felt okay skipping it; however, I hear that if you are a bit unfamiliar with Jamestown or it’s been a while, the film helps you get more out of your visit.  There is also a gallery indoors which takes you through the history of the settlement… that we also skipped for the sake of time and hungry bellies but I really want to come back and check that part out.

Besides, it was a beautiful day outside and we’d been in the car for an hour, so we headed straight for the outdoor portion of the museum.

Jamestown Settlement is delightfully hands on.  The kids were actively encouraged to touch things and try different activities, allowing them to really learn about the culture and immerse themselves in each place.

Our first stop was the Powhatan Indian village.

Powhatan Village Jamestown Settlement Review

Jamestown Settlement Review Homeschool Field Trip

The kids pounded corn into flour, used oyster shells to take the fur off an animal skin, worked on creating a net and played games.  There were lots of houses to visit and explore, and you can see what a Powhatan Indian home would have looked like (quite cozy). Max studied Native Americans of Virginia quite a bit and was a great tour guide as we explored Powhatan homes.

Jamestown Settlement Review Homeschooling History is Fun

Jamestown Settlement Review A Multifaceted Mama Homeschool field trip

Homeschool Field Trip to Jamestown Settlement

The ships were Hudson’s favorite part of the trip.  I was struck by how small they were and we talked about the challenges of living on such a small boat with so many others. Sadly, I didn’t get a ton of pictures on the boat because once we got on the boat, the kids were immediately running around in all directions. The proximity to water, the challenges of fitting through doorways with a baby on my back and the many levels of the boats made taking pictures a little bit less of a priority.

Jamestown Settlement Discovery ship review

James Fort recreated what the homes were like around 1610 – 1614.  The kids could hear the musket fire throughout our trip and were excited to finally see a demonstration.  They also got a chance to try it out themselves with their own wooden muskets which was… entertaining.  Let’s just say ADD and Colonial warfare make a really bad combination.

Jamestown Settlement Review day trip homeschool

They tried on some 17th century armor and toured the Governor’s house, an Anglican Church, and smaller homes. The Fort was filled with the smell of smoke and gunpowder which helped create the atmosphere.

Jamestown Settlement review Homeschool

Homeschool Field trip to Jamestown Virginia Settlement review

Hands on Field Trip to Jamestown Virginia review

Jamestown Settlement Review

Jamestown Settlement Review Jamestown Virginia Homeschool field trip

We spent a little over 3 hours at Jamestown Settlement, but definitely could have spent more if we had stayed for the movie and to check out the galleries.  There are a couple areas that make good spots to stop and have some lunch; if you plan to visit, be sure to pack some snacks. There is a cafe at the entrance which seemed to have pretty standard museum-cafe fare. After 3 hours in any particular place and certain members of our group start slowly falling apart.

We’ll definitely be heading back to Jamestown Settlement and checking out the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.  If you’re interested in checking it out yourself you can find out more information here.

Jamestown settlement review Jamestown Virginia

Is LuLaRoe Worth the Hype? LuLaRoe Review and Giveaway

The first time I saw someone wearing a LuLaRoe dress was at a baby shower.

I think the room stopped and I felt a breeze as heads turned to compliment this dress. It fit the wearer perfectly, had a great bold print (but not overwhelming) and was, of course, complete with pockets.

Still, I was skeptical about LuLaRoe.  I couldn’t just go online and order what I wanted like I’m used to and I didn’t know a person who sold it. Until I *virtually* met Lindsay, a full time mama and part time LuLaRoe fashion consultant.

Lindsay was kind enough to let me give LuLaRoe a try in exchange for an honest review. She even tossed in a couple pairs of what she told me were super soft leggings as a giveaway.

I was excited about the opportunity and my interest was piqued, but I wasn’t so sure until I opened up my box of goodies.

Let’s start with those leggings:

LuLaRoe Leggings. LuLaRoe review and giveaway

LuLaRoe Leggings – $25.

In the interest of full disclosure I am not a patterned leggings girl.
Correction: I was a patterned leggings girl. I lived in patterned leggings when I was 10 and endured a bit of teasing about them. (Who’s laughing now, BTW.)

Having worked in a maternity store, I’ve also met my fair share of (solid color) soft leggings so I figured I’d be all “Meh, leggings. Been there, done that.”

But these leggings are really soft.

REALLY. Soft.

Like, I changed back into them and I’m wearing them as I type, soft.

LuLaRoe leggings have a nice thickness. They’re not too hot, but thick enough to be forgiving where leggings usually aren’t (back of thigh dimples, etc). They are also reasonably priced for a pair of leggings that you can wear as pants. (Yeah, I said it, deal with it.)  It might take me a little while to get over childhood trauma and wear these in actual public, but trust me when I say I’ll be wearing these around the house on a regular basis.  If you’re a patterned leggings kinda girl, you need these in your life. If you’re not, you might find yourself converted.

LuLaRoe Randy Tee. LuLaRoe review and giveaway

LuLaRoe Randy Top – $35

This unisex baseball tee is super long (I’m long waisted so nothing is long on me) which I loved. You can leave it out (and wear it with your leggings), tuck it in or knot it.  I love the fall colors on the sleeves of this one in particular. It’s relaxed through the body, so I’ll probably knot it and wear it with denim.  I’m in no rush for fall, but some cute clothes can soften the blow.

LuLaRoe Nicole Dress. LuLaRoe review and giveaway

LuLaRoe Review and Giveaway

LuLaRoe Nicole Dress – $48

I’ve mentioned in a few of my past reviews that length is a problem for me.  With 4 kids I just don’t have time to worry about whether or not my butt is going to hang out of my clothing when I bend over to pick them up. So right out of the box I knew I was going to love the length of this dress.

Even though I am not a “print person” per se I do admit that prints are great for camouflaging bumpy parts… and soft fabrics while soft are great for accentuating bumpy parts… so the idea of this super soft solid dress made me worried that it would be cellulite city.

I credit the cut of this dress for being a little bit magical. The fabric is super soft, and is lightweight, but the way the skirt lets out is just… perfect. It just kinda skims over the parts you need it to skim over.  This dress completely defied my expectations, fits like a million bucks, and yet, it’s under $50. Winner.

 

LuLaRoe Cassie Skirt Review and Giveaway

LuLaRoe Review Cassie Skirt and Giveaway

LuLaRoe Cassie Skirt- $35

I. Love. This. Skirt.
I will be wearing this skirt to all the things.  It’s hard to see in the picture but the skirt has a little texture to it and a nice thickness. It’s really soft and stretchy. It can easily be adjusted to make it short or long… and depending on the print you get, you can dress it up or down. It’s probably my new favorite article of clothing in my closet.

So… That’s it!
The verdict is: LuLaRoe is absolutely worth the hype. The clothes are well designed and flattering and suuuper comfortable. The prices are really good and even if all the prints and styles aren’t your thing, they’ve got enough variety that you can make it your own.

There are LuLaRoe Fashion Consultants all around the country, but if you’re interested in trying it out, please check out my girl Lindsay on Facebook here.

Lindsay has a sale coming up July 28th at 8pm EST and more coming up after that.  LuLaRoe puts out limited prints to keep things fresh, which means if you see something you love you gotta snag it fast.

Wanna try a pair of leggings for yourself?

I’ve got two pairs to giveaway!
Enter even if you don’t think you’re a printed leggings person. Seriously.

 

LuLaRoe Legging Giveaway *CLOSED!*
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE TWO WINNERS!

Fits sizes 2-12

LuLaRoe Legging Giveaway

Navy and red Tall & Curvy legging
fits sizes 12-24

LuLaRoe Giveaway Tall And Curvy Leggings

 

Giveaway items and clothing provided by Lindsay Ethier, LuLaRoe Fashion Consultant in exchange for an honest review. If you would like for me to review your product please contact me at SarahJamillah at Gmail.  

 

LuLaRoe Review and giveaway!

A Week of Science, Nature, Poetry and Activism.

I had so much to share and theeeeeeennn the power went out.

We’ve just gotten the lights back on after a nasty storm on Tuesday.  A large branch came through our backyard, but luckily no one was hurt and there was no major damage.

So here’s a little catch up:

We kept ourselves pretty busy last week with a couple trips to the river, the park and the Science Museum of Virginia.

Getting the kids more in touch with nature is one of the primary reasons that we’re homeschooling next year; I’ll definitely write about our nature walks in the future but there’s so much to talk about I’ll have to skip over that for now.

Review of the Science Museum of Virginia in Richmond, VA
Speed at the Science Museum of Virginia

The Science Museum of Virginia has a special Science After Dark event on the third Friday of every month. While we used to be members of the Science Museum, we had not been since they opened their newest exhibit, Speed. Speed is all about… well… speed and it takes place under the sprawling fuselage of an SR-71 Blackbird. We had been skipping over the old exhibit in that space on our last visits, so it was pretty exciting to see how they had revamped the space, somehow jamming the jet into the museum as though it were a ship inside a bottle.

 

Science Museum of Virginia review 2016
Selfie with winds going 80 miles an hour.

At the exhibit, we compared rates of plant growth, watched high speed videos in slow motion, played air hockey against a robot, watched the traffic of the city on timelapse (and saw ourselves enter the museum), raced down a track to clock our own speed and even withstood hurricane winds… and we definitely didn’t check out everything.

Speed exhibit at the Science Museum of Virginia

The Science Museum of Virginia Richmond 2016 Review

In addition to Speed, there was a new (to us) play area for younger kids that all the boys loved.

Science Museum of Virginia Richmond Review

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There’s always a ton going on at the Science Museum of Virginia but Science after Dark offered a few additional activities like making marble mazes and floating bubbles.  Langston loved the giant lite brite.

Review of Science After Dark at the Science Museum of Virginia

Activities at Science After Dark at the Science Museum of Virginia

The Science Museum of Virginia has been making some major changes in the past few years and if you haven’t been, it’s definitely worth the trip.

On Sunday we had an opportunity to participate in a really cool event: Haikus for Change. McLean Jesse and Liz Blake White, the two wonderful women behind this project, wanted a creative and unique way of reaching out to our legislators – through haiku.

Haikus for Change

Participants were encouraged to boil down their thoughts, hopes, and concerns about recent events into just 17 syllables, which would then be copied and mailed off to our local representatives.   Max participated by working with me  to collaboratively write his very first haiku (which he has asked for me not to share, but will be mailed).

 

Thinking about homeschool next year has definitely given me a different perspective on how we’ve spent our days.  While I still find the concept of homeschool mildly terrifying, it has been encouraging  to find that opportunities to learn about the natural world, physics, civics and poetry came so readily in our daily lives.  Not all weeks will be this way of course, but this was a good one and has helped me personally in my effort to change how I think about education.

 

 

May Stitch Fix Review

The flood gates have kinda started opening on my personal life and there’s a WHOLE LOT MORE COMING FOLKS.

But I need to take a break for a minute and write about something frivolous. Like Stitch Fix.
Also, I’m in love with my most recent Stitch Fix Stylist.   I might run away with her for some sweet, sweet shopping.

Too much?

Yeah. But I’m not pressing the backspace button so here we are.

here we are
via giphy

Anyway, this last shipment was exactly what I was looking for.

If you’re new to Stitch Fix:
Stitch Fix sends personally styled items to your home for a $20 styling fee. If you love an item,  your $20 fee is applied to your final purchase. Stitch Fix sends apparel and accessories in a range of prices based on your style profile and sends suggestions on how to style your items. If you’d like to give Stitch Fix a try, please consider using my referral link. I receive a $25 credit to Stitch Fix which keeps these reviews coming.

So let’s check it out:

Stitch Fix Review with prices
May 2016 Stitch Fix

 

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Papermoon Sedon Crochet Yoke Top

The overall style of this top was perfect… but it didn’t do much for me when I tried it on.  The neck was a little high but I liked the crochet. It also had a cute little button detail in the back.  Even if it fit perfectly, I thought $44 was a bit much for the quality. And yep, bra issues. I know. I’m sorry.

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Daniel Rainn Dacey Crochet Panel Top
I don’t have anything like this and I needed it. I paired it with grey blazer I bought to console myself since my Stitch Fix blazer didn’t work out.  It has a crochet top but the stitching hides nude bra straps quite well which is nice. It also has a button detail in the back but a wide enough neck that you don’t need the buttons to get the shirt on and off. It’s a teensy bit big but I don’t really care.  I immediately wore it to a baby shower and I’ve worn it several times since… actually, I found myself wearing this top along with a Stitch Fix necklace and my Stitch Fix Clutch just the other day.

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RD Style Josalyn Maxi Dress
I love this dress.  I had been looking for something just like it so I was happy to get this in my Stitch Fix Box even though I have to get a strapless bra for it. It’s sheer but fully lined and has a tie at the waist. The neckline and arm holes are high enough so any strapless bra should do. It’s really comfortable. Langston and space didn’t allow for a full length photo but I’ll be wearing it a lot this summer.

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Nine West Jellybean Studded Flat Sandal
Stitch Fix has shoes! I hate shoe shopping so I was happy to get sent a pair… These sandals were super cute.  I don’t need summer sandals so I didn’t keep it but they were super comfortable and easy to pair with anything.

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THML Arny Embroidered Tunic
The stitching on this tunic was super cute and I had pinned a lot of things with embroidery so I was definitely heard on that. I loved the lightweight gauzy fabric. I don’t know. I wanted to like it, and it had all the elements there so I should have liked it… but there’s something about the cut of it that was decidedly not me.

All in all it was a great fix and my faith in Stitch Fix is being restored. I can’t wait until Melissa sends me the next one (which should be in a couple weeks).

HINT: If you loved one of these items PIN IT to your Stitch Fix board for your stylist to see!

If you’d like to try Stitch Fix based on my review, please consider using my referral link so I can keep these reviews coming! Thanks so much!

See past fixes:
April Stitch Fix
February Stitch Fix
January Stitch Fix and tips for getting a great first fix.

See more Stitch Fix Reviews from other bloggers here
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April Stitch Fix Review: Lots of Tops

STITCH FIX REVIEW

So, this is like a 2 for 1 Stitch Fix review because I was down with the flu/cold from hell and didn’t do my March review… but I did get a fix. So, grab a cup of coffee and settle in for some virtual closet peeping because this one is an extra long one.

If you’re new to Stitch Fix:
Stitch Fix sends personally styled items to your home for a $20 styling fee. If you love an item,  your $20 fee is applied to your final purchase. Stitch Fix sends apparel and accessories in a range of prices based on your style profile and sends suggestions on how to style your items. If you’d like to give Stitch Fix a try, please consider using my referral link. I receive a $25 credit to Stitch Fix which keeps these reviews coming.

I’ll start with April, because it is April, and work backwards.

Stitch Fix Review April 2016 full set
April Stitch Fix

 

Somehow my stylist saw that I only wanted tops this time around. I didn’t remember saying that but I guess I did.  Since I’m losing a lot of weight doing the no dairy/no meat plant-based thing I know I changed my settings to no bottoms since I really don’t know what size I am. I wasn’t opposed to dresses but tops are what I got.  They are my favorite anyway.

Stitch Fix Review 41Hawthron Bethany Faux Wrap Knit Top

41Hawthorn Bethany Faux Wrap Knit Top
I’ll start with this because it was the only top in my box that was distinctly not me. It’s a stretchy knit wrap top. It fit well, but I’m not really into the color or the print.  I do think it would be cute if I worked in an office…?  If it was my style, it would have been great to nurse in.

April Stitch Fix Review 41Hawthron McAdams Beaded Neckline Blouse

 

41Hawthorn McAdams Beaded Neckline Blouse
It had grey and black embroidery around the neckline and a henley style buttons down the front.  I was a little “meh” about it at first but really loved it when I layered it with a blazer. Sadly the whole thing was just a little big and I didn’t want to feel obligated to wear it only layered (I have another tank like that already).  Super cute though.

Stitch Fix Review 41Hawthron Sybill Scoop Neck Blouse

41Hawthorn Sybill Scoop Neck Blouse
I really liked this top. Perhaps I should have kept it. The fit was okay, kind of boxy (which I’m noticing a lot of these blouses are) but the real problem was white + kids. I don’t normally think or care about that but as I was taking these pictures my littlest guy was going through a clingy phase and demanding to be picked up. When my hand is down in these pictures it’s not me trying to be cool, I’m actually just holding my velcro-baby’s hand. Anyway, right now, with kids, I’d ruin it in a heartbeat.  As much as I love white, I’m sticking to bleachable cotton tees for right now.
I really did love this top though.

April Stitch Fix Review THML Lenon Embroidered Top

THML Lenon Embroidered Top
KEEPER! Loved the lightweight gauzy fabric and the embroidery.  I can layer it up or wear it alone and the embroidery satisfied my desire for patterns while also the reality that I really just wear solids.
I wore it today paired with some bootcut denim which I pulled down from the attic with a real, genuine knee hole made from about 7 years of love and got compliments already. And I’ve barely been out today.

Bay to Baubles Mona Crescent Fringe Necklace
This was a really fun piece I don’t have a great picture of. A little big for me but very cool and fun to try on. It might be hard to see in the picture but it’s an antique gold color with metal fringe. I probably wouldn’t wear it and it didn’t stand a chance in my house  so it went back.

Overall, April was a great fix. For some reason when I sent my feedback I got an apology email saying “sorry you didn’t love your fix”. Oops. If you’re somehow reading this, dear stylist, I DID love my fix… For me success really isn’t about keeping all the pieces. I’m happy for find one I really love and I wouldn’t have picked up or tried on on my own. The embroidered top definitely fits the bill.

 

Now moving backwards to March.

March Stitch Fix Review outfit set
March Stitch Fix

 

Some of my basic blazers are well loved and getting kinda threadbare so I asked for a new basic blazer not so secretly hoping I would get this one. And then some other fun items.

Tart Anahi Knit Blazer Stitch fix review

Tart Anahi Knit Blazer
When I pulled this blazer out of the box I LOVED it. Super soft stretchy fabric with a great fit. It had an open front, light shoulder padding to give it shape, and ruched 3/4 sleeves. Loved. It.
Then I checked the price. $148. Ouf.
Suddenly I only liked it. Funny how that works.  For $148 I would have preferred something I could wear year around. Hemmed. Hawed. Realized I don’t have $148 for a spring blazer and sent it back. Sad face.

 

Stitch Fix Review Market & Spruce Sam Hi-Lo Short Sleeve Tee

Market & Spruce Sam Hi-Lo Short Sleeve Tee
I loved this little tee, super soft and easy to wear. I’m the queen of black, white and grey so it wasn’t different enough to keep but it’s really a cute top.

41Hawthorn Colibri Solid Tab Sleeve Blouse Stitch fix review

 

41Hawthorn Colibri Solid Tab Sleeve Blouse
Static city. It was hard to get a good picture of this one because it was so clingy. Also it was very green. The roll sleeves didn’t stay rolled as you can see from the picture. Basically, this top was awful.

Just Black Irina Braided Pocket Flare Jeans stitch fix

 

Just Black Irina Braided Pocket Flare Jeans
These are super cool, very on trend and nice WIDE flares.  I have to just describe the wideness of these flares for a moment because I actually couldn’t get a picture of the whole thing to save my life.  These were SOOOOO soft, very elongating (and just plain long, I wore 4″ platform wedges and they were still grazing the ground). They had a nice high waist and I loved the braid detail at the pockets.
Were I in the market for a pair of wide flares with a 50″ inseam I would have kept these in a heartbeat.  I happened to have a nearly identical pair (sans braiding and length) that I never wear but spent a boatload on the last time flares were a thing. If you need a great flare though, request the Irina Braided Pocket Flare Jeans because they are super cute and comfortable. Prepare to get them hemmed. Unless you’re a giant.

Stitch Fix review Jill Michaels V Charm Necklace

Jill Michael Livia V-Charm Necklace
I would have passed right over this necklace in a store but I just love it. This one was my keeper for the set and I wear it all the time. I love how delicate it is and in comparison to the other Jill Michael Jewelry it’s a great deal. So happy with this little charm.

So, I’m getting yet another fix in April and I’m determined to get better photos for you since people seem to be enjoying the fixes.

HINT: If you loved one of these items PIN IT to your Stitch Fix board for your stylist to see!

If you’d like to try Stitch Fix based on my review, please consider using my referral link so I can keep these reviews coming! Thanks so much!

See past fixes:
February Stitch Fix
January Stitch Fix and tips for getting a great first fix.

See more reviews from other bloggers here:
Share-Pics-Of-Your-Fix-Button

February Stitch Fix Review

So I told you all about how I doubted Stitch Fix, tried it anyway and my stylist knocked it out of the park. 

This time I got a new stylist. I’m kinda disappointed because the other one did such an amazing job and I was hoping to get the same one.

So, how’d the new stylist do?
Here’s what I got in my February Stitch Fix along with a gold clutch which you’ll see in some of the pictures.

Stitch fix feb

Let’s start with the Le Lis Adea Faux Suede Button Back Top

Stitch Fix Review february black Le Lis Top

There is nothing wrong with this top. It has a great mix of textures with the faux suede and jersey and it’s black, which I like and has buttons down the back which is always a cute touch.  The cut with the seam across the bust is not particularly flattering and the a-line shape isn’t really doing it for me. I am lucky enough to have a waist after 4 children and this top hides my slimmest part. Also, I’m the queen of black tops. This one is definitely going back.

The Hailey 23 Floral Marcia Dress

Stitch fix review february floral Marcia Dress

This dress is super cute and the large floral graphic is definitely on trend. The stylist noticed that I like floral prints which was pretty keen-eyed since I didn’t post many florals.  I like the cut of the dress, it’s not particularly flattering for my body type (same issue as the faux suede top) but the material makes it work. There’s just one thing I need to pull this one off: long legs.

It took me a long time to figure out why dresses were too short on me but looked great on other people and it’s because my upper half is much taller than my lower half.  Being long-legged make dresses look short, being long waisted makes your dress actually short and your butt hangs out. I don’t resent it until I come across a cute dress like this one and realize that I won’t actually be able to move in it without someone being able to see exactly what underwear I’m wearing. Also, cellulite. I’m fine with it, but maybe not enough to show it off. I know I mentioned this so I don’t really feel heard on this one. Sending this one back. It makes me sad.

Collective Concepts Clarinda Dress

Processed with VSCOcam with c3 preset

 

 

I asked for a dress for my Valentine’s Day date to the ballet and this one definitely fits the bill for romantic but maybe not the bill for February.  It’s exactly my color- that is to say, it is exactly the color of me.  I love neutrals, but I’m not entirely sure if I can pull off this color in February. I do think this dress would be great for a cruise I’m going on in June.

I don’t have a strapless bra (because breastfeeding) so I’ll need to pick one up… just like I need to pick up that Melissa and Doug maraca.  PS. Still short. Also, I don’t live in Florida. It’s cold in Richmond in February. There’s a lot I like about this one, but it’s very summery.

Verdict: Meh?  I’m unconvinced. Should I keep it? Please give me your opinions in the comments, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

41 Hawthorn Montreal Henley Blouse

41Hawthorn Montreal Henley Blouse

I like this blouse. I’m not particularly excited by it, but I like it. Black and white prints are always a winner with me. The print is kind of meh. I do need blouses though so I hate to send it back.

Overall, this stylist didn’t really seem to put the same amount of consideration into my body type (or the weather) as my first one did.  While she definitely picked things I liked, the cuts really weren’t right for my body (or the weather).   on the other hand, I never would have tried out the Clarinda Dress on my own, and that’s exactly what I like about Stitch Fix.

 

The clutch is super cute, it may be the one thing I keep this fix. BUT I still need a Valentine’s Day dress soooo… I need your help.  Keep the Clarinda Dress? Send it back?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Honest stitch fix review clutch

 

Stitch Fix matches you up with a personal stylist and sends hand picked clothes straight to your door. A styling fee of $20 goes towards the purchase of your items and a 25% discount is offered if you keep all 5 items. If this review or any of my other reviews encourages you to try Stitch Fix, please consider using my referral link.

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If you’d like to see more fixes from other bloggers you can check them out here.

I Jumped On the Stitch Fix Bandwagon. A Stitch Fix Review

So, I’ve been debating trying Stitch Fix for a long time.  I keep seeing Stitch Fix reviews and I’ve just been more and more curious.

Here were a few of my reservations about Stitch Fix:

  • I know my body (pretty) well I am a little bit of a tricky fit.
  •  I like shopping. In a store. For myself. By myself.
  • I have a really classic (read: boring) style and I’m currently stocked up on white, grey, and black t-shirts.

So, why did I try it?

  • Well, I’m a little bit of a tricky fit. I worked in retail for 10 years and there was nothing more frustrating than a client who had a specific concern and wouldn’t let me help them. Seriously. Nine times out of ten if they let me help we could find the clothes that would work for their body type. Not because I’m smarter than them, but just because I knew the clothes, I knew how they’d fit, and that’s what I was there for.  So, if the stylists at Stitch Fix are anything like me in retail they are screaming “I CAN HELP YOU!” in their heads.
  •  I like to shop… but I’ve got 4 kids and I don’t get a chance to shop for myself in a store. Time to try something different.
  • I have a really classic (read: boring) style and I’m currently stocked up on white, grey, and black t-shirts.  It’s nice to branch out. I want to branch out… but I always end up buying the black t-shirt.

Also: My loving husband got me a Stitch Fix gift certificate for Christmas because he’s amazing and I’ve been hemming and hawing about it for entirely too long.

Having a retail background actually helped a little bit because I was able to tell my stylist everything I wished customers would have told me.  Here’s what I said:

“I’m a mother of 4 boys ages 9 to 6 months. I’m a blogger & freelance social media manager.
I tend to lean towards a clean casual style (i.e. I have a lot of of black, white, and grey tees, jeans, joggers and flats) but I have a wide variety of tastes & open to branching out.
On bottom I’m a tricky fit. My thighs are proportionately larger than my hips & waist so stretchy fabrics are key. Button or deep v tops are great because I can nurse in them.”

Then I started up my pinboard

stitchfixboard

Click on the preview to see the whole thing. I made sure to try to note exactly what I liked about each item, although I admit that sometimes I slacked off and just said “all of it”.

So, the box.

I was asked what I wanted specifically from this box and I said I wanted a dress from my anniversary dinner, a nice blouse that does a little bit more than my standard t-shirt and jeans. I may have mentioned that I could use a good pair of boyfriend jeans and I know I said I was looking for a sweater that was long enough for me.

Along with my box I got a note (thanking me for being so specific) and some styling ideas.
Here’s what I got:

Stitch Fix box Review what's in the box

And this dress for $68

 

Stitch Fix review 41Hawthorne Chevron Dress
For a first fix, which I heard runs a higher risk of being a miss, I was totally impressed. She was SO close to the mark.

41hawthorn presley sweater stitch fix

I really liked the 41Hawthorn sweater. I thought the colors were great and loved the buttons down the back and it fit well.  In the picture and in real life the point is not centered. It bothered me more than I expected.

Stitch Fix Review Market & Spruce

The Market & Spruce blouse made me laugh. I JUST got rid of a blouse with a very similar print. So, I loved it enough to have purchased it once.

Stitch Fix Denim Review Kut from the Kloth

The Kut from The Kloth Jeans. I. Love. These. Jeans. They are so soft and she absolutely nailed the proportions. She definitely thought about the fit with these which is perhaps the most convincing thing about Stitch Fix.

Stitch Fix Kut from Kloth review

The necklace I love. And while totally impractical for a mom of 4 I’m keeping it because I do, on occasion go out without the kids.

Stitch Fix 41hawthron Chevron Dress

The dress. The 41Hawthron Chevron Dress is the one really heartbreaking thing about this box.  I love, love, love the dress. The cut, the fit, the fabric, the price… I just really hate the chevron. Specifically, this grey and white chevron. I’ll let her know this was the only place she missed the mark. Any other print and I would have kept it.

If you go on my pinterest board you can totally see where she got inspiration for this box. I was a bit dubious on the personal stylist thing, but she really did take a personal approach and do her best to find something that I would like.

VERDICT:  Even though I’m not keeping everything I’m officially a Stitch Fix fan.  The fact that everything fit well is nothing short of amazing (since she’s never actually seen me) and the prints weren’t that far off. For my very first Stitch Fix box I was impressed. She missed the mark only by going what I think was a pretty safe route with some pretty popular prints (bird print and chevron). I guess the downside of having worked retail for so long is that I’ve seen those prints a little too much at this point.

Try it yourself! Here’s my referral link to give it a shot. I’ll be sure to post reviews of my next box too.

Stitch Fix Review Denim Blouse Necklace

Marlowe’s Picks: Favorite Bedtime Books for Toddlers

This article contains affiliate links to purchase some of our favorite bedtime stories. I make a small commission off your purchase. If you can’t buy these books locally, please consider purchasing through my affiliate link.

 

I’m not a routine person by nature, but when it comes to bedtime with the kids I have found having a routine makes a big difference. Every night when it’s time for bed we read three books (okay, okay, sometimes two), turn off the light and talk about our day. After that I sing a little song as I tuck him in.

I really, really, like kids books so we have a huge stack of them. Marlowe goes through phases when it comes to picking his bedtime stories. We’ll read more or less the same three books for a couple weeks and then switch gears. Here’s what he’s loving lately:

bedtime books for toddlers 2.jpg

 

little blue truck

Little Blue Truck
Trucks and animal sounds… this book combines a lot of toddler favorites. Little Blue Truck is also a sweet story about a little truck who helps out.

BigRedBarn

Big Red Barn
If this doesn’t put them to sleep, nothing will.
There is absolutely no action in this book what so ever… not that that’s a bad thing, it actually makes it a perfect wind down for bedtime book.

Very Busy Spider

The Very Busy Spider
I just love Eric Carle. Marlowe likes to trace the raised spider web with his fingers, of course there are animal sounds and repetition which toddlers love.  We’ve got a ton of Eric Carle books but this one is one of our favorites.

dinosaurumpus

Dinosaurumpus
My aunt picked out this book for Marlowe and he loves it. He’s totally into dinosaurs and this book is silly, fun and has a great rhythm… so long as you don’t trip over the word Deinosuchus. I probably wouldn’t make this one last in the line up.

A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol
It’s that time of year. A Christmas Carol is one of my husband’s favorite stories so we thought we’d get our boys started young. Kidding. Mostly. This book is mostly about color, but with your familiar characters from A Christmas Carol. You can tell the story as much or as little as you want with the characters (this makes a fun Christmas gift)

Pretty soon we’ll be reading a whole different set of books. I’ll share them here… in the meantime I’m going to go read the Very Busy Spider… again.

Saving Money: Shopkick App Review

I am not affiliated with Shopkick nor have I been contacted about a review, I just came across it, thought it was cool and wanted to pass it along. I am using a link which would get me “kicks” if you sign up.  If you want to try the app based on this review, please consider using my link here.

I feel like sometimes I go to Target 3x a week. I don’t even want to think about how often I got to Target, Kroger, Costco and MARTIN’S combined.  I got a lotta mouths to feed. With Christmas coming up I have no doubt I’ll be in and out of stores quite a bit.  Now at least I feel like Shopkick has been rewarding me for it.

I’m not sure where I came across the Shopkick App, but I thought I’d give it a try. With the app you get points (or “kicks”) for walking into stores, scanning items, and/or making purchases.  Points add up quickly and can be used to redeem gift cards to various stores such as Target, Starbucks, HomeGoods, Sephora and other prizes.

The way it’s used is pretty simple.

First download the app. Then, turn on your bluetooth and open the app when you’re out shopping to get kicks when you walk into stores listed on the app (Target, Kroger and many other frequently visited stores are on there).

Some stores may give you kicks for scanning certain items, if you have the time for a little scavenger hunt, you get additional kicks for scanning (not buying) items that show up within the app. Occasionally stores will offer additional kicks for making purchases.

For example, on a recent trip to Kroger I received 35 kicks just for walking in the door, while I was there I scanned Dreaming Tree wine for 20 additional kicks and if I had purchased the wine and scanned my receipt I would have gotten 150 more. Sharing the app with your friends will earn you additional kicks and they’ll start out with free kicks as well.

I went to the mall today to see how Shopkick would do there and got 35 kicks as I was walking past Yankee Candle. In addition to getting kicks off of your regular shopping trips, the app will let you know about deals and discounts in near by stores (50% off Gymboree for example).

ShopkickThe upside:
-Shopkick is free to download
-Purchases aren’t required for kicks
-The app is easy to use
-Many of my frequently used stores give kicks just for walking in
-Discover sales, promotions, new products

The downside:
-Having the bluetooth on all the time drains your battery
-You have to have the app open for walk-in kicks to register which means you need to remember to open it in the first place.
-If you want kicks for scans you might have to hunt for items.

Verdict:
After test driving the app for a month (and without sharing the app for extra points) I’ve earned enough to get a $5 gift card to Target. While that might not seem like much, I really didn’t make any extra effort to earn kicks.  If I had time to scan items I did, but sometimes I didn’t bother and I didn’t open the app every time I went into a store.

Earn Target Gift CardsIt’s certainly not a get rich quick scheme, but it is, at least eventually, free money.

 

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