My Latest Thrifting Haul

I went out in search of a couple pairs of shorts the other day and visited a Salvation Army and a Goodwill. While I only ended up getting one pair of shorts, I did get some other pretty awesome stuff that I was really excited about, so check it out!

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On the top left are two pairs of jeans. The one is sort of a trouser jean style and the other is a printed skinny jean. I have been wanting some printed skinny jeans for a while and for only $2.50 (both pairs were $2.50), it seemed like the perfect time to snag some. All the way over to the right are two tankini tops (I got the pink one for $1.00) and a knee length swim skirt/cover up. Middle bottom is a skirt and above that are a pair of Calvin Klein shorts and a tank that goes perfect with them. Bottom left is a pair of PJ pants for one of my nieces. When I saw them, I had to get them for her because my sister and I loved Little Miss and Little Mr. when we were kids, plus they were only $1.00. Above those is an Ann Taylor Loft tank that I adore the colors and fit of and above that is a ridiculously cute and flattering plaid tank. I forgot to add the Land’s End bathing suit I picked up for Asher too. Those were my most expensive purchase of the day at $3.99, but they are an awesome orange color and looked brand new, so they were worth it.

The last purchase of the day I made was for my niece, Eden, who was coming over to spend the night. I thought it would be fun to get her a little something, so I ended up getting her this outfit. Each piece was only .99, so the whole outfit was only $1.98! She is so hilariously cute and said “Oh thank you, Aunt Nell, I love it!” Now if that isn’t the best $1.98 I’ve ever spent, I don’t know what is. Look at how stinkin’ cute she is!

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So, my grand total for all 14 pieces of clothing I bought was $25.33. That’s less than $2.00 per piece of clothing. Oh, how I love thrifting!

Have you found anything good lately while out thrifting? If so, please share!!!

Fashion Inspiration – Mindy Kaling

I thought it might be fun to share now and then the different people who I draw fashion inspiration from. This week, I just so happen to have chosen the lovely Mindy Kaling.

Why her? Well, let me just put it right out there…I admire her gorgeously curvy shape and her ability to rock an outfit. I love that she wears so many dresses and skirts and I love her mixing of prints and colors. She’s a girl who has embraced her curves and knows how to celebrate them. That’s just as it should be!

I think that can be pretty summed up in this quote of hers. Oh, Mindy, I can relate. I’m not willing to pass up much when it comes to food and I can’t get enough clothes!

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So, here are a few of her styles that I particularly like…

I’m obsessed with the idea of a good romper and am on the search for one, myself. I love how this is styled with the jacket and heels.

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I love prints and I am a big fan of yellow. I think this dress is so fresh and springy.

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Um, hello! Sparkles AND leather! Yes, please. I have no idea when I would ever have an occasion to wear an outfit like this, but if I did, I would totally do it!

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Here’s another outfit that I would probably never have something to ever wear it to, but I just think she rocks it and I love the color of the heels with the black.

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I love the simplicity of this dress, mixed with the unexpected color shoe. Such a cute outfit and I love the metallic belt at the waist for definition too.

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I’m loving the bold print of this dress and they way her makeup is done. I think she looks awesome in this.

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Last, but not least, I love this casual look. I always like the look when people layer shirts like this, but for some reason just never do it. Maybe I should give it a try this fall.

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What do you think of her style? Would you try any of her looks out? Who is a fashion inspiration to you?

Thrifty Thursday

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m quite thrifty. I NEVER pay full price for anything and really only buy clothes from the clearance rack or thrift stores. This allows me to have many clothing options instead of only a few. We are basically a one income family, so this only makes sense to be able to afford to get “new” clothes, but even before we were a one income family, I still shopped this way. In fact, I’ve been shopping this way my whole life. My Mom taught my sisters and I to shop the clearance racks so we could get the most for our money and I’m so glad she did. When I was in high school, I discovered the magic of thrift stores. I cannot tell you how excited I got when a friend took me to one for the first time. I loved 70s style clothes back in my high school days and thrift stores were a fantasy world filled with them! I was really big into embellishing my jeans too. Like, I got all sorts of funky patches and I would do bead work on them and stuff and you can’t beat getting a $3 pair of jeans that you could do whatever you wanted to it and not feel guilty about sewing and ironing stuff onto new pants. I mean, it was the greatest!

As much as I loved thrift stores then, I love them even more now. My boys even get excited to go and get Abercrombie, Express, American Eagle, Hollister and the other brands that are popular. They look brand new (and sometimes are new with tags) and no one knows the difference. I tell them not to be embarrassed about it anyway though. Who cares where you got your clothes from? If they look nice and you feel good in them without having to pay a fortune, then that is awesome! I’ve seen a lot of seriously hideous clothes that were expensive, so price means nothing. It took them a year to catch on, but now they all see the value in getting those clothes from thrift and consignment stores instead of paying the price they cost to just go out and buy them new.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking people who don’t shop clearance or thrift stores. It just doesn’t make sense for myself and my family. There are things we would rather spend our money on, like family camping trips and things like that. So, it’s really just a matter of where you like to put your money. In saying that, if you know me, you know that I LOVE clothes, jewelry, shoes, purses, etc. I love basic things and I love funky things (more on the funky side). Clothes and accessories are such a fun way to express yourself and I love putting outfits together. With that being said, on a small budget, you have to get creative. Clearance and thrift store shopping allow me to get all sorts of great pieces to mix and match. I love it!

Here’s an example of a good clearance/thrifted outfit. This is what I wore to church on Sunday. (Sorry, it was rainy out and my lighting isn’t very good.)

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Let me break this outfit down for you. The dress was a clearance dress from Sears several years ago that I paid $6.00 for. The sweater is Banana Republic that I got at Goodwill for $1.50 on a half-off tag sale. The leggings I got for free from a review I did on my blog a few years ago. The shoes are Anne Klein ($69.00 retail) that I got from Goodwill for $2.99 and the necklace is from Walmart and I paid $5.00 for it. That’s right, the necklace was the most expensive part of my whole outfit! So this outfit cost a total of about $15.00. YES, $15.00!!! Why in the world would I not shop clearance and thrift stores when I can put together an outfit I feel good in for $15.00? I got so many compliments on Sunday and felt so cute!

Now, I want to show you some close-ups of those shoes. I found them on a date night with Brian about a week and a half ago. I freaked out when I saw them and was crazy excited that they were my size (I wear a 6 1/2 or 7 and these were 6 1/2). I brought them home for a whole $2.99 and looked them up and found out that they retailed for $69.00! I would NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS pay that much for a pair of shoes, but to get a $69.00 pair of shoes for $2.99…well that’s exactly what this girl is going for. I pretty much know what brands are good ones and when I see them in the thrift store and they are in awesome shape and fit me, you better believe I snag ’em! I had women stopping me at church to comment on them!

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Are they not ridiculously adorable?! And they were super comfy too! BONUS! I am super thrilled with this purchase. Probably my most favorite thrift store find yet.

So, if you’ve been wanting something “new”, but don’t have a lot of money to spend or just don’t want to spend a lot of money, I highly suggest you check out some thrift stores for sure and scour the clearance racks as well. You don’t have to spend a ton of money to dress cute and feel good. In fact, I feel better in an outfit that I know I got for a steal than in one I paid more money for. I totally have buyer’s remorse if I pay more than $10.00 for a shirt. Seriously, I can’t stand to do it and rarely ever do, unless there is something I need in a pinch and don’t have time to search at thrift stores.

I know there are people who get all weirded and grossed out by the thought of buying something that someone else used to wear, but seriously? Seriously?! There’s this awesome thing you most likely have at home called a washing machine and I’m guessing you probably have detergent too. Oh and for shoes and jewelry and purses…disinfectant wipes work great. I’ve yet to hear of someone catching an infectious disease from something they bought from the thrift store. Now, I don’t EVER wear anything from one without washing it or cleaning it first, but that’s just because I’m super sensitive to smells and I need to remove all smells from anything before I have it on my body. So, I just bring the stuff home and straight into the washer it goes. Simple.

What about you? Do you clearance or thrift shop? Where are your favorite places to go? Mine are most definitely Goodwill, Salvation Army and for the older boys, Plato’s Closet. I find great clearance at Sears, J.C. Penney and Kohl’s too. If you’ve found some great deals, please share!

Wishlist Wednesday

So, I’m thrifty, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still some special little treasures I wish for. I mean, a girl’s got to dream, right? So today’s post is devoted to things on my current “wishlist”. Things that I would love to have and who knows, maybe someday I’ll get lucky and have some extra money to get one of them. Or, if any of you are just dying to buy me a gift, that will work too. LOL Really though, sometimes it’s just fun to dream…

I love this Anchor Slider Charm Bracelet from Alex and Ani. One of my favorite Bible verses is Hebrews 6:19 – We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.     That’s what this bracelet makes me think of, so I would love to have it to always wear to be able to remind myself that when things get tough or I’m having a bad day, I have a hope in Christ that is bigger than any of my circumstances. Seriously, I love it.

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If you know me at all, you will know I am not a tennis shoes kind of girl. I like them on other people, but I feel weird in them. I have a pair for running and I bought a pair to wear to Disney last year on spring break and have maybe worn them 4 times since. They just don’t mesh with my style and the kinds of things I wear. However, I do need casual shoes sometimes and besides my Sanuk Sidewalk Surfers, which work great in spring and summer, but not so much in fall and winter, I usually revert to my pair of Converse One Stars from Target. Yup, not All Star, but One Star. Ha! They are gray and go with everything and are comfortable enough and I like them, but I do dream of someday getting an actual pair of Converse All Stars. Coral and Teal are awesome. What I really would love are the white ones because they are so versatile and cute, I’m just afraid they would look dirty really fast. If I ever find a pair of Converse at a thrift store that are my size and are in decent shape, I’m snagging them for sure.

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I reeeeaaaallly want a denim jacket. I have wanted one for a long time and even though I check at every thrift store I go to, I’ve never been able to find a good one and they are always more than I want to spend anywhere else. They are so cute with a maxi skirt, a cute little dress, colored denim…there are so many possibilities. I totally need to get my hands on one of these soon because I don’t have a good jacket option currently.

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I want some shiny black rainboots. Yup, sure do. Not this brand, because they are stupid expensive, but a pair of some sort. They would be so awesome for rainy camping days, wet days out on the soccer fields, etc. I’ve wanted some for a long time.

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I used to have a pair of silver flats and I wore those puppies out. They go with everything! They look adorable with a dress or dressed down with jeans. I loved them. I need a new pair.

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I typically just wear a rhinestone nose stud, but I would love to switch it up a little and get a cute little turquoise one like this. I think it would be so cute for summer.

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So these are just a few things on my wishlist. It’s never too early to start a Christmas list, right? LOL

Is there anything you’ve had your eye on for a while?

The First Big Step

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My husband was away at 5th grade camp as a chaperone from Tuesday to Friday last week (he’s the Technology Director for our school district and this was his 3rd year going on the trip), so it was just me and the boys for the week. I have to say that I absolutely hate him being gone, but I love that he goes and does that with and for the kids. He’s pretty awesome like that and I know a lot of the parents really appreciate him being there too.

Anyway, I couldn’t wait for him to get home on Friday! We sent texts to each other throughout the week and talked on the phone every night before bed, but I just couldn’t wait to see his face again and have him back home with us!  Yeah, I kind of like him.

I wasn’t expecting to get to see him until the end of the school day on Friday, but he sent me a text and said I should come up town (to our tiny little one traffic light town) to the little restaurant up there and meet him for lunch! I was thrilled that I was going to get to see him before I thought I would and even more thrilled at the chance to have time for just the two of us.

It was in the low 80s and feeling pretty warm, so I decided this was it…I was going to take that first big step I’ve been talking about and wear a pair of shorts in public! Kinda scary for me, I’m not gonna lie. I felt like the tiny little restaurant in town was a good starting place though, so I decided to go for it. I took my shower and got my hair and makeup done and put on my outfit for the day and…I surprisingly didn’t hate how I looked. I actually felt kind of cute. WHAT???!!! It’s true!

When I got to the restaurant and saw him, we were both all smiles and giddy and it was so ridiculous and I loved every second of it. The way he looked at me made me feel like the most gorgeous girl on the planet. We went in and sat down and he just kept looking at me and he said “You look amazing right now. Everything about you looks amazing.” Swoon. And with that, I felt amazing.

We ate lunch and then decided to run into the next town over that isn’t a ton bigger than ours, but bigger, to go to the grocery store and grab a few things for our son’s birthday party. Can I tell you that I didn’t even think about the fact that I was wearing shorts in public? I didn’t feel uncomfortable or self-conscious and when we ran into a friend and talked to her for a bit, I didn’t think even once about what she might be thinking about my legs because, guess what? She wasn’t! No one is! I can wear shorts and not have to think even for a second about it because no one else cares! Cue the light bulb. Sheesh, why has it taken me so long to get to this point? 37 years old and just finally figuring out that no one thinks about us nearly as much as we think they do. LOL Most people have better things to do than to sit around thinking about what my legs look like in shorts. SHOCKER!

So, my friends. My legs made their debut in shorts and nothing catastrophic happened. No one crashed their car from seeing me walk along the sidewalk into the restaurant, no one choked on their food, no one in the grocery store laughed and pointed. My legs went completely unnoticed (except by my husband of course, who was thrilled to be able to reach over in the car and touch my bare leg…ooh la la).

I am so excited about this summer and the freedom from worrying about how my legs look. I’m so excited that when it’s hot, I can wear something comfortable and cool, instead of suffocating in capris. This summer is going to rock. I’m so glad I took this first big step.

Oh, want to see what I wore? Well, here ya go… (P.S. The shorts are Dockers and the top is Ann Taylor Loft and I got both of them at Goodwill for a total of $4.50)

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Shorts For My Size Legs

Ok, so remember me talking about that I am going to wear shorts this summer, for the first time in probably 15 years?! Well, I am dead serious about it and strangely excited about it too. So excited in fact, that I decided to start looking on pinterest at some cute shorts and you know what I found? The stinkin’ teeniest, tiniest, shortest shorts. REALLY? I mean SERIOUSLY?! Why are the shorts so dang short? I mean, I’m feeling brave and all, but I’m still modest and don’t really want my nether regions peeking out. Sorry if that was a little graphic, but SERIOUSLY!

I have a slight dilemma here. I’m not a big fan of the way bermuda shorts fit me because they go down and cover just above the thickest part of the back of my knee and sort of accentuate it and that’s not at all what I’m going for, so I don’t want shorts that are that long. However, I don’t want shorts that are super short either that I feel like I keep needing to uncomfortably tug on to keep them from creepin’, if you know what I mean. So, what’s a girl to do?

Obviously, the only way to really know whether something is going to look good or not is to try them on. Shopping online for anything to fit my bottom half (jeans, skirts, shorts) is pretty much impossible for me. I’m too short and things just fit weird, so that’s totally out. However, it’s still fun to look online and draw inspiration as far as the types of things I think I might like. So, my mission (probably next weekend) is to find some shorts that are cute without being too long or too short. I have to be realistic with myself that I’m not yet to the point where I am going to put any pair of shorts on, no matter how cute, and look at my legs and think they look great. But I am crazy excited about the fact that I can feel myself becoming more confident in my own skin and actually excited to go shopping for some shorts (ok, and maybe a couple shirts too). I still have birthday money, afterall, and it’s just begging to be spent on some new summer clothes!

So, here are a few pairs of shorts that I would like to find something similar to while out shopping.

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Something like these are a must! The black and white will go with all of my bright colored tops and I think the print will be good camo for my booty. LOL

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A pair of simple, dark wash jean shorts are pretty much a must (these may still be a little shorter than what I’m going for though).

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I definitely want a great pair of navy shorts because they are so versatile.

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Those are just some ideas I’m tossing around.

I’m a thrift store and clearance rack shopper and those aren’t great options for finding shorts right now, so I’m prepared to pay a little more than I would probably like, but I’m still going to be frugal because that’s just me and I want to get a few pair, not just one, so I need to make my money stretch. If any of you find any great deals on shorts, please do share! I’m sure other readers would appreciate it to!

Wish me luck!

Date Night Outfit

Every girl needs to switch it up every once in a while, so I decided to try out a new lip color for date night. Now, I have NEVER worn red lipstick before (except for one year with a Halloween costume, but that doesn’t really count). I got this NARS lip color from Sephora as a free gift for my birthday, so I figured I’d bust that baby out and give it a try. Here is the result…

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At first I was a little freaked out and wondering if I could pull it off without looking like a weirdo, but as I wore it around the house for a couple hours and caught myself in the mirror a few times, I kind of liked it. I decided to go with it and even decided to wear red shoes to perk up my outfit a little.

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Here’s the best part. You know what our date night consisted of? We went to Tim Horton’s and had coffee and a donut, went to Goodwill to look for some shorts (Yup, I bought myself two pair. I told you I was going to wear shorts this summer.), and went grocery shopping. One heck of a date night, right?! So, maybe I got a little overdressed for what we were doing, but if you remember my post about the importance of dating your husband, I think it’s totally worth it.  I think HE is totally worth it. He kept staring at me like it was the first time he’d ever seen me, so that made me feel even more confident.

There was something really empowering about wearing red lipstick. It made me feel bold and confident and it was just a fun change. I enjoyed our time alone together and getting dressed up for my amazing husband. I recommend trying something new the next time you go out for date night…even if it’s just to the grocery store.