Monday, June 27, 2022

St. John Packing List

 style on a budget, travel style, st. john, vacation packing list, north carolina blogger, nc blogger

Hey y'all! T-minus three days until we are off to St. John in the United States Virgin Islands. I have been thoroughly looking forward to this vacation since I booked it back at the end of February! We are taking our family of four to the Coral Bay area of St. John and we've booked an Airbnb to stay at. Last year, we had our first Airbnb experience and we loved it! Staying at an Airbnb is a great affordable way to travel with the whole family plus we love finding options that are oceanfront or with a pool, like we did for this trip. I'll definitely report back on this Airbnb experience in St. John!

So, like I said above, we leave in three days. Guess how many items are actually packed inside of a suitcase? Zero. Not even one thing, lol. But, I always prepare for a big trip like this. I have a little area on the floor in our bedroom that has all of the items that I have purchased for the trip and as I find things I know I want to bring (and won't need before we leave), I add them to the collection on the floor. I do our full packing the day before the trip because it personally helps me forget less and I don't have to wear my least favorite underwear for a week. I always put together these packing list blog posts before our vacations as a way to help me think about what I really need and want to take with me.

Ok, so let's get this planning process started...


I always end up living in swimsuits when we travel so I'm packing all of my favorites plus my new favorite suit that I got this season from Aerie!


I've learned my lesson over the past few years that I'm really not the get all dressed kind of person when I travel. We also aren't the fancy dinner kind of family so I keep my vacation wardrobe pretty simple now. I like to pack a few dresses that work for dinner or swim coverups, running shorts, tanks, and a pair of jean shorts. This vacation is for beach time, relaxation, and adventure so I'm definitely going to be packing my clothing accordingly.


I can also be an over packer when it comes to my shoes as well but I'll be sticking with sandals for this trip. No heels will be necessary for me!


For bags, I'm planning to take my Longchamp bag on the plane because it's super roomy but I'm also planning to wear a belt bag to keep my ID and money within close proximity. I'm not sure which belt bag to take so I may bring two of them since they are small and easy to pack. I'm also planning to bring a straw bag to use as a beach bag.


My main accessory for this trip will be sunglasses and I'll be packing a couple of pairs of my favorite Amazon ones. I have the most sensitive eyes so sunglasses are a necessity for me! As far as jewelry goes, I'll be bringing my new favorite rattan earrings, a pair of everyday studs, and a few simple bracelets. I also have a gold necklace that I wear daily and never take off. One of my favorite accessories for this trip will definitely be this float!

B E A U T Y  A N D  S K I N C A R E

My summer beauty routine is pretty simple is starts with my oil serum, sunscreen, a little BB cream, a cream blush, some eyeliner, and mascara. Speaking of sunscreen, St. John is very strict about what kind of sunscreen you are allowed to use on the island. You have to avoid sunscreens that contain the “Toxic 3 Os” of oxybenzone, octinoxate and octocrylene because they are prohibited in the United States Virgin Islands. I have really sensitive skin so it was a little more challenging to find sunscreen that would work for me but I found this one from Sun Bum that checked all of the boxes for me.

Thanks so much for stopping by! I'll be back after our trip to give a full recap of our experience in St. John. Chat soon!

Friday, June 24, 2022

Currently Loving .258


Happy Friday! I hope your summer is off to a great start! I have been busy taking care of my garden and spending time with girls so far this summer break. I've also been trip prepping because we are headed our annual summer vacation next week and this year, we are going to St. John! I have never been to the Virgin Islands before and I am so excited to take on a new adventure. I have heard such great things about St. John! We will also been celebrating my husband's birthday while we are there so it's going to be an extra fun trip this year. I'm planning to share my St. John packing list at the beginning of next week so stay tuned for that!

Today, I'm sharing my kind of weekly roundup of what I'm Currently Loving! A couple of weeks ago, I was able to host a shopping party at my local Madewell store and they had so many great items! I'm including a few of my favorites in this roundup. I love summertime shopping!

Which of this week's picks is your favorite?!

1. T E V A S | I bought my first Tevas last year and I am a big fan now! I wore them all last summer with everything from shorts to dresses. I'm loving this color combo! If you are in between sizes, size down to next whole size for the best fit.

2. G R A Y  T A N K | I bought this tank at my Madewell shopping party and I've already worn it multiple times. It's so soft and comfy! Stick with your regular size for a fitted look. I just ordered the mauve one because I love it so much!

3. H E A D B A N D | I'm loving this rattan headband! I also saw it in store and it's super cute. Perfect for keeping your hair out of your face on a hot day.

4. R I N G | How cute is this shell ring?! Yes, I also saw this in store and it's even better in person. Such a great simple statement ring for summertime.

5. B L A C K  T A N K | I've had this black tank for a couple of years and Target keeps bringing it back because it's such a classic. It washes up well and fits great. It's a great eight dollar tank! The fit is true to size for a relaxed look or size down if you prefer a more fitted style.

the same tank in white

6. S K O R T | I wore this skort yesterday and I love it! I paired it with a tee for getting some work done and running errands but it's also perfect with a tank or sports bra for working out. I found that it ran a little small so I would recommend sizing up, especially if you are between sizes.

7. S A N D A L S | I always love a great pair of gold sandals this time of year! They are so pretty and dainty paired with a dress or really, anything. This pair is on my wish list!

8. S H O R T S | I'm sharing this shorts again because after wearing them regularly for the past month or so, I can 100% tell you that you will love them. They are a great length (5 inch inseam) and more of a mid-rise that still holds you in just right. They are my perfect jean short!

Thanks so much for visiting! I hope you have a great weekend!

Friday, June 3, 2022

Currently Loving .257

 mom style, what to wear for summer, madewell, madewell style, target finds, nc blogger

Happy Friday! I hope you've had a great week! My girls wrapped up their school last Friday and we went to visit Josh's dad in South Carolina. We took advantage of being so close to Charleston with a day date! I absolutely love walking the streets of downtown Charleston to admire the gorgeous architecture and the beautiful flowers boxes that adorn the windows. We also were able to go out on the boat and found a gem of a spot to explore. It was called Caper's Island and we found the best shells there! It was a great weekend and the perfect way to kick off summertime.

Today, I'm sharing my weekly roundup of what I'm Currently Loving, which includes some items that are on my wish list for our upcoming vacation to St. John. I am so excited to travel!

Which of this week's picks is your favorite?!

1. L I N E N  D R E S S | How perfect would this dress be for our trip to St. John?! I love the style and the fun tropical pattern. I'm hoping my local store has it in stock so that I can try it on this weekend!

2. E A R R I N G S | I love all things rattan and these earrings are no exception. I think they would pair perfectly with that linen dress!

3. A T H L E T I C  D R E S S | I am still really loving athletic dresses and this pretty green one caught my eye (it also comes in several other colors)! They are such a cute and practical outfit for warm days.

4. T A N K | A black tank is a closet staple and I love this $8 option from Target. I am planning to wear mine this weekend! It fits true to size.

5. S A N D A L S | These fun sandals are another Target find. Are cute are they?! I love the clear straps and the rhinestone details. There's also a pearl option that I also love!

6. T O T E | I have the crossbody version of this bag that I literally carry every single day right now. A straw bag is the perfect summertime accessory because it goes with everything!

7. B I R K E N S T O C K S | I just added this white pair of Birkenstocks to my growing collection. They are the most comfortable sandals of all time and I wear them daily. I also own and love the black pair of this style. I love them!

8. S K I R T | I have been an eyeing this skirt and I recently ordered it because it's on mega sale now! I am loving the maxi length with the side slit. So fun for summer!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you have a great weekend!

Friday, May 13, 2022

Currently Loving .256


Happy Friday! I hope you've had a great week! I have been busy working in yard and my backyard garden. I am loving seeing the flowers bloom and watching my seedlings grow! My peony bush has been blooming the most gorgeous flowers. It has a few buds left to bloom and then it will be finished for the season but it's brought me so much joy the past couple of weeks. Now, we have zinnias to look forward to. I also planted cosmos, dahlias, and bachelor buttons so I'm excited to see how those grow. We have also expanded the garden so I guess I need to do a whole post on just my garden!

Today, I'm sharing my weekly roundup of what I'm Currently Loving! I have been stocking my wardrobe with pieces that are functional for my current lifestyle. I am currently all about comfort and functionality of the items I purchase!

nc blogger, mom style, madewell style, athletic dress, birkenstock, spring style, summer style

Which of this week's picks is your favorite?!

1. H E A D B A N D | I am loving the print on this headband! These headbands are also super comfy for all day wear. So perfect for the pool, beach, or working in the garden!

2. S A N D A L S | These shoes are also perfect for the pool, beach, garden, and so much more! If they get dirty, you can just rinse them off. I already have a multi-colored pair that I love but I ordered this black pair this week because they are a more chic option that I can wear to work and with weekend outfits. These sandals are also incredibly comfortable!

3. P A N T S | I bought these pants after seeing @karlareed recommend them on Instagram. I have really been wanting to try out a pair of wide leg trousers but I didn't want to spend a lot of money since I wasn't sure if they would work for me. These pants are a steal! They are currently on sale for less than $20 and the quality is fantastic. They are made out of a super soft tencel material! Fit is true to size.

4. S H I R T | I have always purchased inexpensive white button ups that didn't last more than a season or two. I'm ready to upgrade this classic piece in my closet and this one is on my wish list. I love the oversized, relaxed style of it!

5. S U N G L A S S E S | I shared about these $15 sunglasses in my last roundup and I love them so much that I purchased a second pair in another color. I love the shape of them and I really think they look designer! I am a big fan.

6. B E L T  B A G | This belt bag is one of my most used bags in my collection. I even own two of these (pink and black) and I'm considering a third color. It's such a great, functional bag! I love them for traveling, adventuring, and recently it's been my go-to bag for the amusement park.

7. E A R R I N G S | I am loving the scallop details on these earrings. You just can't go wrong with a pair of gold hoop earrings!

8. D R E S S | I have been loving all of the athletic dresses that I have been seeing. Like I mentioned earlier, I'm shopping for pieces that are functional for my lifestyle and an athletic dress seemed like a perfect fit. I just got this one in the mail and I love it! It has super soft (and comfortable) bike shorts built into it. The shorts even have pockets so you can store your phone or key if you are on the go. I was a little concerned when I noticed there wasn't a built in bra but it actually wasn't a problem once I tried it on. The shorts are connected to a layer that goes all the way up so you actually are covered by two layers in the chest area. If you are between sizes, size up one size for the best fit!

Thanks so much for visiting! I hope you have a great weekend!

Friday, April 29, 2022

Currently Loving .255


Happy Friday! I hope you've had a great week! I've missed posting here the past couple of weeks but between the Easter holiday, a conference for work, and a fun gift card giveaway event at the Friendly Center, I've been busy! This week has been a little more calm and I am looking forward to the weekend. We are expecting some rain but that's okay because I have seedlings that need the rain! My seeds have been planted and I'm so excited for what's blooming this season. I'm ready to fill the The Joy Garden stand with lots of free flower bouquets!

Today, I'm sharing my weekly roundup of what I'm Currently Loving, including a few items that I've recently ordered and/or received. I love shopping during the springtime!

nc blogger, madewell, mom style, what to wear for spring, madewell style

Which of this week's picks is your favorite?!

1. D R E S S | This is the dress I wore for the Friendly Center event this past Friday and I absolutely love it. First of all, it has pockets! I love the flattering fit, the flowy fabric, and the cute embroidered details. It fits true to size but if you are between sizes, you can definitely size down.

2. B A G | I just ordered this bag and I cannot wait to get it! I've been hoping that Madewell would release a straw crossbody bag and they did. I'll report back soon but I have a feeling that I am going to absolutely love it!

3. J E A N  S H O R T S | I got these shorts in the mail last week and they are everything that I was hoping they would be! A rise that holds you in but allows you to breathe, the perfect five inch inseam, and room for your thighs! Literally my perfect jean short dream come true. For sizing, they are true to your Madewell denim size which is one size down from what you would wear in denim in most other brands. They are 100% cotton so they will feel a little snug when you first put them on but the material will just get better and better over time.

4. E A R R I N G S | How darling are these dainty flower earrings?! Such a pretty finishing touch for all of your spring and summer outfits.

5. T E E | I just had to get this tee! I actually never buy graphic tees because I wear them to work Monday-Friday but this one, I had to have it. What's even better is that it's on major sale so I believe I paid less than $10! If you are a fellow gardener, scoop this one up!

6. R U N N I N G  S H O R T S | Not to be dramatic but they are the best running shorts of all time. Back in 2020, I invested in my first pair, I bought my second pair last spring, and I just ordered this fun print. They are a great mid rise that comfy on your belly, they are a five inch inseam, plenty of leg room, and they never ride up. They are pricey compared to getting a pair at Walmart but trust me, they are amazing if you live in running shorts when it's warm like I do. They fit true to size!

7. H E E L S | I am loving this gorgeous neutral heels! They would be perfect everyday heels for work and they are also great for dressing up a look for an event. I love the ankle straps!

8. S U N G L A S S E S | One of my favorite follows on Instagram, @nachobasicmom, shared these sunglasses and I thought they were designer! But, they are actually an awesome Amazon find and they are about $15! I love them!

Thank you so much for visiting! I hope you have a great weekend!

Friday, April 8, 2022

Currently Loving .254


Happy Friday! I hope you've had a great week! This has been a busy one for us... the girls and I have been holding down the fort at home while my husband has been on a mission trip with our church in Guatemala. We are looking forward to having our favorite guy back at home tomorrow but he's had an amazing trip! Next week is spring break and I'm also really looking forward to that. I'm trying to plan something fun to get us out of the house each day next week, which is probably going to include going to the arboretum, a trip to Carowinds, and thrift store shopping, of course.

Today, I'm sharing my weekly roundup of what I'm Currently Loving! I have several of this week's picks already in my shopping cart. I just love shopping this time of year... because spring and summer are my absolute favorite. Bring on warm weather, sunny days, and flowers!

nc blogger, madewell, spring style, style on a budget, outfits for moms

Which of this week's picks is your favorite?!

1. S H O R T S | I shared a great pair of mom friendly denim shorts last week and this pair is another great option. I live in shorts summertime because it's stays so warm and humid in North Carolina. It's pretty much impossible to wear a pair of jeans if you don't have to. I love the 5 inch inseam of this pair and they are great classic wash for everyday wear.

2. N E C K L A C E | Do I even have to explain why I love this necklace?! It's a flower! I love it!

3. T O P | This top is currently in my shopping cart! I have been seeing a lot of similar styles in the new arrivals at my favorite store and I think this is the one I'm going to get. I really love the tie straps and the perfect neutral color.

4. T O T E | I really don't need another bag but I love really loving this one! It's such a great style and color pallet for spring and summer.

5. S A N D A L S | A great pair of sandals that go with everything are an essential for me! This pair is *on sale* and perfect to wear with everything from shorts to dresses.

6. D R E S S | I am a big fan of black and white gingham. It just never goes out of style! But I also just really love the details and fit of this dress. Dresses seem to become my uniform this time of year!

7. B A G | Y'all, this leather bag has flowers on it! How adorable is that?! Like I said, I don't need another bag but this one is too cute.

8. B R A C E L E T | I love these dainty, stackable bracelets. I wear a stack or two of bracelets and it always includes a gorgeous handmade piece from Sarahandipity Jewelry! She's graciously given me a coupon code that will save you 10% off. Just enter the code EMILY10 at checkout!

Thanks so much for visiting! I hope you have a great weekend!

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