off the shoulder

It was toasty this past weekend, you guys! Well, at least by Chicago standards.

Not complaining though, because as much as I love fall and winter fashion, it feels good to show some skin and work on my tan! (I’ll forever be trying to beat my husband, Eric.)

I ran over to Old Navy last week for a workout top, and left with a few additional unplanned items –  including this fun off the shoulder piece!

off the shoulder

off the shoulder

Photos by Benavides Photography

I was immediately drawn to this one because of how bright and beautiful the color is. It’s definitely not a shade I owned, and I 100% needed it in my life (um, bonus it’s on sale for less than $15 right now, people).

To be honest, the florals had me feeling like I belonged in Barcelona or Hawaii instead of that Chicago dressing room…*sigh* note to self: book that beach trip I keep talking about.

If this color isn’t your favorite, have no fear! Old Navy had a whole wall of patterns, and I’ve rounded up a few other favorites I’ve come across below, because I think what really makes the look are the major summer vibes this style gives.

WLLW

Target

Old Navy
Lucky Brand

You can totally dress up off the shoulder tops with jeans and a cute pair of wedges, or wear it out and about for casual exploring with more laid back pieces. Same goes for dresses and rompers of this style!

I chose the latter this weekend, pairing my off the shoulder top with easy sandals (shout out Target’s shoe department, am I right?), old cut-offs (probably from a thrift store), and favorite cross body bag.

off the shoulder

Top | Shorts (Similar) | Sandals | Cross body

What are some of your summer style go-tos?? I want to hear!

In other news, E and I leave for Perú in just over a week, eeek! So while open toe booties are my ideal next purchase, I should probably hunt for the last of our packing list items instead…

Happy Wednesday, friends!

Days By Day

P.S. All photos taken + owned by Benavides Photography (Thanks, E!). In Chi and need a photographer? Send a note his way!

summertime in Chicago

Happy June, friends! AKA HAPPY SUMMER CHICAGO. Is there a more appropriate photo to represent this feeling than a movie in the park + rosé?

Well, fingers crossed, this beautiful mid-70 degree weather is here to stay.

I’m not gonna lie, y’all. May was tough, and that’s why I’ve been MIA these last few weeks. Eric and I had to go home unexpectedly for a series of unfortunate events, ranging from surgery to the loss of loved ones – the hardest being my family’s ten year old sweet pup, Gordo, to cancer.

If you’ve lost a pet before, than I know you know how it feels. There are just no words. They are true family members that grow up along side us.

summertime in Chicago

All that being said, the quality time with our families was so, so good and the break from everything else was much needed.

Now that we’re feeling recharged, it’s back to groovin’ and we are ready for summertime in Chicago! The people are out and about, ready to break out of their winter hibernation. It’s a pretty magical feeling – one that makes this city so special.

To celebrate this sweet new season around the corner, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite signs that it’s finally here in The Windy City.

{Paleteria Carts on the Beach} // Bring your cash folks! There’s nothing I love more on a warm Chicago day than hitting up the paleteria vendors on the beach. The authentic Mexican ice cream treats you can find are unbeatable and so delicious – my favorite are the cookies and cream popsicles!

summertime in Chicago

Spoiler alert: These treats can ruin exercise intentions, because sometimes you can’t help but stop for one. Oh, maybe that’s just me?

{Street Festivals} // To me, this is a quintessential sign of summertime in Chicago – street fests on street fests each week. Everyone has been locked up for 8 months, so now every weekend you can find multiple festivals happening across the city.

summertime in chicago

From the best hot dog round up to traditional German celebrations, there’s always something to explore! The best parts? Festivals are often free and come with awesome live music.

Side note: Tuesday movies in the park might not technically count as festivals, but they’re in this same category of awesomeness for us!

{Beaches & Balls} // This one’s pretty straightforward – the warmer it gets, the more packed the beaches get. Our favorite way to spend a Saturday includes tunes, snacks, and back-to-back sand volleyball games.

summertime in Chicago

It’s a strange concept to be laying out on the sand and turning around to a skyline, but it sure is pretty! (Also, confirming this is actual footage from a ChiTown beach.)

{Legs} // Until this month, I literally don’t think I had shown my legs outside since October? Well, except when I desperately ran to the drug store next to us for a dessert craving.

You know when those dresses, shorts, and skirts start showing up all over town, it’s a good sign. And sometimes, you just have to wear them and freeze a little because mind > matter.

summertime in Chicago

{Happy Pups} // It’s a sad sight to see all the cold doggies outside freezing their little bootys off with the rest of us during the winter because they have no choice – they gotta do their business!

That being said, you an tell it’s a good day when all the dogs are out with big smiles instead of pet sweaters. Running in the park, wind in their hair – Chicago summer pups are really living their best lives.

summertime in Chicago

Honoring Gordo with a photo from him soaking up the sun on Fourth of July a few years back. I know he would’ve freakin’ loved summertime in this city.

Now, I’m hoping I totally didn’t just jinx us with all this talk! What are the key signs of summer where you live??

Days By Day

counting down

Two posts in one week, what what! Life is a little chaotic right now and that means I just gotta do the best I can – because not everything is going to get done all the time. Whether that be laundry, blogging, cleaning, etc. Anyone with me??

Even though life is chaotic, it’s also very, very exciting! 44 days left until Eric and I get married – eeeek!!! Now that we’re almost a month out, it seems like we’re at the turning point where we are bouncing around everywhere and talking about how time can’t go by fast enough.

Now, it’s just a matter of staying calm and making sure we’re ahead of the game in as much of the final stuff as possible – and continuing to freak out about just how dang close we are!

Aside from all this wedding shenanigans, here is a scoop of life Currently

{Cooking // More in general…}

Ok, well mostly I am being the chef’s (aka Eric’s) assistant. This guy is cookin’ up fresh salmon, cajun dishes, baked pasta, the list goes on…

This week though, I whipped up some of my own goodness. Granted nothing I make is the fanciest of dishes, but hey, everyone’s gotta start somewhere! How about some freshly seasoned chicken, veggies, and whole grain rotini pasta for ya??

counting down

{Wearing // Still summer clothes?}

I think everyone’s been a little weirded out that we’re almost to the end of September and we’re still hitting up the 80s every day. I think everyone is also trying not to complain. As much as I want fall here (it’s my favorite!), I know after fall comes winter…and winter can mean polar vortex here in Chicago.

For now though, we’re still rockin’ the shorts, tanks, and dresses! You might’ve caught this white Target maxi on Instagram yesterday. I found it on sale for $12.99 in the Junior’s section and it’s pretty much my favorite sale find ever!

It was the perfect wedding shower dress and now I’ll keep wearing it until the weather says no.

screen-shot-2016-09-22-at-8-45-21-pm

{Counting down // to a VACATION.}

As mentioned earlier, E & I are obviously beyond ecstatic about the wedding. Can it be November tomorrow? We are also sooo pumped for a real vacation and to be able to travel again!!

Without a doubt going home to Texas always makes us so happy, but this year we’ve missed exploring out of the country since we’ve saved up time and money for the big day. The morning after though, we’ll be jet setting off to Jamaica and we can’t freakin’ wait.

counting down

The wait will totally be worth it and much needed after all these busy months. I remember people having said they needed the honeymoon after all this wedding stuff, and I used to be like oh sure, but it’s probably been so fun, they’re probably exaggerating. And it is SO FUN (I’m going to miss it so much!!!), but it’s also just tiring and can feel like a lot.

So I get it now…you really do need the honeymoon. It’ll be a well-deserved getaway with my best friend to celebrate our next chapter as Mr. & Mrs. WAHOO!

counting down

And maybe most exciting of all?? We’ll get to add another pin to this pretty vintage market find. Ok, not most exciting, but it’s up there.

Days By Day

 

Saturday Mornings

Chicago farmer’s market Saturday mornings are what summer dreams are made of, y’all.

A few weekends ago, Eric and I set off to check out two farmer’s markets we missed from the end of last summer – the Green City Market in Lincoln Park and the Division Street Farmer’s Market. These markets run from May through the end of October, but prime time are these summer months when the sun is shining and everyone is out for some fresh goods.

We don’t go prepared to do all our grocery shopping (although we have aspirations to be that adult one day), but we love to chat with vendors, consume as many samples as possible, and get some fresh baked croissants or grilled cheeses we can munch on while walking around.

That time we picked up a chocolate croissant and coffee. There was also a crepe stand set up that I’ll be making a beeline to next time. I was pretending we were in Paris again, since pain au chocolat and banana-nutella crepes were basically our diet for the whole week we were there.

Saturday Mornings

Saturday Mornings

Saturday Mornings

We realized that come 12:00 pm, a lot of the vendors were definitely low on their stuff. If you’re set on having your range of choices, or getting some of those drool worthy mozzarella sticks that have people lining up in Lincoln Park, I’d aim to get there at least closer to 10:00 am!

Um, also, if you’re a dog lover like me – huge perk to attending a market is that there are literally so many dogs of all breeds and ages. It kills me. All the owners Eric and I went up to were so nice, we had to get our petting quota in.

We’re long overdue for our next farmer’s market trip – hopefully this weekend!

Days By Day

birthday

It’s always the worst when blogging has to take a back seat, but these last few weeks have just been one busy pow wow and I’ve wanted to be 100% present in all of it. From work picking up with new opportunities, to best friends visiting, to planning wedding festivities – right up to birthday celebrations around town for my favorite human – it’s been crazy and wonderful.

That being said, I want to get back in the swing of things, and figured what better day than today – when I get to celebrate this handsome future husband of mine being born. Happy Birthday, love! This photo is one Feather & Twine took during our engagement session and it nearly kills me. Those looks and that smile – I’m a lucky lady!

birthday

We declared this weekend one of birthday shenanigans and romped around Chi for new adventures, starting with brunch of course. Saturday morning Eric and I ventured to Pomp & Circumstance. I’d been wanting to check this place out forever and had heard their Bloody Mary was on point.

This trendy Old Town spot did not disappoint. Eric and I shared the chilaquiles and Pomp croissant breakfast sandwich. Oh, and the drinks were indeed delicious! We left perfectly happy and ventured into the streets right outside to check out the Old Town Art Fair.

birthday

birthday

birthday

Post-brunch and fair, we dropped by Macy’s to get Eric a much needed new pair of everyday shoes and then made our way to the Chicago Blues Fest. Fun fact – it’s the largest free blues festival in the world! It takes place in Grant park, so the city gets to serve as the most perfect backdrop.

Only challenge to navigate? It was somehow 93 degrees so we were making bee lines for a spot in the shade. That didn’t hold us back though, this fest was a ton of fun.

birthday

birthday

birthday

Sunday brought another cool opportunity. Friends were going sailing on Lake Michigan to watch The America’s Cup, which was being held on fresh water for the first time right here in ChiTown! This weekend long event consisted of different sailing races among countries to determine qualifiers for the final event in Bermuda one year from now.

birthday

birthday

birthday

IMG_8808

It was so awesome to see the city from a whole new perspective – the beautiful blue waters we’re usually looking out to! The cup was really cool. I’m still not sure of all the technology  behind it, but those big racing sailboats for each country get enough wind underneath that it actually looks like they are flying just above the water.

Needless to say, we had a great weekend checking new things off our list and celebrating Eric! He is truly the best, kindest, most loving, brilliant, funny, and wonderful human, and deserves every bit of it and more.

E, I love you a whole bunch! I have loved celebrating the last four birthdays with you, and I hope this next year is the best yet. Cheers to you, love.

birthday

Well, friends, hope it’s a fantastic week! Tonight we’re off to eat tapas and sangria with our Chicago pals to spoil this guy some more, and in a few days I make my way back to the Lonestar State. Wahoo!

Days By Day