Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Today is a very special day! My favorite man in the whole world is celebrating his birthday!

You can obviously tell from the picture above, my Dad has style! 

I truly don't know where I'd be without my Dad. He is the most wonderful, supportive and loving guy I could ever ask for. As an older brother to five younger sisters and father to two daughters, he sure does know how to deal with way more than his fair share of hormonal women {don't worry, he has a grandson now and is one heck of a 'Papa'}! My Dad has shown me that it is all the little things you can do in life to care for one another. He is the most hardworking and dedicated man I know.

Oh, and I guess he's pretty fun too... except when he used to ask my sister and I to "bond"... that was code for making us do yard work with him {which we hardly ever helped with... sorry, Pops!}.  I think he learned pretty early on when my sister nearly ran the lawnmower through the fence, he was probably better off doing it on his own! 

Love you, Dad! Thanks for all you continually give to our family.


And ROCK CHALK JAYHAWK, of course!

Monday, April 29, 2013

More Friendly Shopping!

I think I'm going to have to mark my calendar for this time next year and save my pennies to better budget for all these great friends and family sales!!!

On top of the Saks sale we chatted about last week, Tory Burch is also having her "Friends and Fans Event." Enter code TBSPRING at checkout for 25% off.

Here are a few things I'd like to scoop up:

earrings {sale $51} / iPhone case {sale $37} / tote {sale $221} / swim top {sale $78} / swim bottom {sale $82}

By the looks of it, it seems like I'm dreaming of a beach vacation! 

Friday, April 26, 2013

Friday 5: I need it all!

  1. How beautiful is this watercolor by Lourdes Sanchez? I think I should attempt a DIY... haha! I wish! {Painting sadly, no longer available}
  2. I'm think the painting in #1 and a pair of these sconces would be cute with the rug I had my eye on last week! {sconce $151}
  3. And I should wear these cute sandals while I'm out on the house hunt this weekend! {mini wedge $150}
  4. Ok, these are a must have. Love the interesting shape, plus they're on sale. You know me... can't miss a sale! By the way, who's picked up there favs during the Sake f&f Sale? {Kate Spade studs $25}
  5. I've been on a cookies and cream kick lately! I can't seem to get enough Oreo cookie goodness! I think I'll give Mia a mixing break this weekend and satisfy my sweet tooth with this concoction! {Oreo Muddy Buddies}

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Let's Shop!

It's Friends and Family Sale time again at Saks! Love getting those email notifications!!!

Use code FRNFAM2 at checkout for 25% off.

Here are a few things I'm considering:

AG Jeans {orig. $225 -- $169 w/discount}
A new pair of boyfriend jeans. Mine have gotten a little more hole-y than I'd like to admit!

9/15 Dress {orig. $270 -- $203 w/discount}
 The perfect LBD for upcoming summer weddings and events!

DVF scarf {orig. $185 -- $139 w/discount}
And, my go-to accessory, of course!

Happy shopping, friends and family! What's on your shopping list?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Free for Me and Free for YOU!

It's always nice to get a little something free, but it's even better when the freebie is cute! 

Paper Coterie is an adorable site dedicated to helping you capture your memories in a beautiful way. I first fell in love with them when I designed my families Christmas card this past year. They had super cute, non-traditional options that fit our family pictures perfectly. Scalloped edges, bright colors and awesome typography... what's not to love?

So back to the freebie... The great people at Paper Coterie are offering the below prints for free download on their site here

I think this will be the first one I add to my gallery wall:

Choose happy? Ok! If you say so!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Spending My Weekend With Kate Spade

We all know I have a deep rooted love for any and all things Kate Spade, so of course I'd be happy to spend my weekend with her.

Ha! I wish! But if I can't spend my weekend with Kate Spade for real, maybe just Saturday? No? Not even?

Well then, I'll just have to design my own weekender on Kate Spade Saturday. Get it? Oh I'm just so funny!

For real, though, friends... How cool is this? Over on Kate Spade Saturday, you can design you own weekender tote. LOVE IT! I think I might have to cheat on my house savings plan and splurge on one of these. You get to choose the body and handle color, base color, pocket color and strap color {although I only liked the natural option... neither the black, nor the white did it for me}. There are quite a few colors to choose from as far as the bag portions go, but here are the combos I am leaning towards:

Plus, you all know how I love a monogram... for an additional $10 you can add your initials, like so:

My only wish is that the monogram was larger. I'm thinking if I didn't splurge for the $10 monogram through Kate Spade, I could take it to my gal and get my initials done in a larger font once I got my hands on this little slice of heaven the bag!

And aside from being able to customize it to your liking, just look at the great features of the bag itself:

Cute lining + a shoe compartment + tons of pockets = true LOVE. Seriously, where was this little gem pre-birthday?

Go ahead -- you know you want to... head over to Kate Spade Saturday to design your own, too! But just try to narrow it down to one... I dare you! {$280-$290}

Monday, April 22, 2013

Home Sweet Home

What a week it's been since last Monday. Though my heart is still saddened for the victims of the tragedy in Boston last week, I am once again reminded that there is good in this world... and I truly believe the good will always outweigh the bad. 

As I continue to watch news coverage of the courageous stories that surface out of Boston, I see love. Love for one another. Love for the marathon itself. And love for their city. Their strength and passion reminds me to love my city, too. Kansas is with you, Boston.

Love your city.

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

Friday, April 19, 2013

Friday 5: Now & Later

For today's Friday 5, I've chosen a few items that I'm ready to put to good use NOW and one for later!

  1. Oh hey, Nordy! I'd love to take this cute eyelet skirt off your hands in any or all of the colors offered! What a cute summer essential! {eyelet skirt $49}
  2. So this is my Friday pick for later... you see, I don't need this cute rug in my life right now, but I've had my eye on it for a while and it's on sale. No room for it in my house now, but since I'm on the house hunt, it might just be perfect for where I end up! And yes, I realize it's from PB Teen, but have you seen some of the great home items they have for non-teens? {mini dot rug $240}
  3. Just added these cute flats to my collection. I've been on the hunt for the perfect leopard flats ever since my pup chewed up my forever favorite Banana Republic pair when she was a puppy... mind you, Lola turned 5 this week, so yea, I've been on the hunt for a while! Worth the splurge for me... and I snatched them up during a Kate Spade 25% off friends and family sale! {terry leopard haircalf flat $228}
  4. How many pairs of sunglasses is too many pairs of sunglasses? And how similar is too similar? If I didn't have to justify those two questions, these babies would already be mine! They're like an Audrey Hepburn version of a classic. {Ray-Ban thick cat-eye Wayfarer $144}
  5. Every color I'm planning on frequenting this summer all in one scarf. It's like one stop shopping. You need this in your closet, too. You'll thank me later. {spring garden infinity scarf $48}

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Small Joys

Still sending prayers and love to the city of Boston and all those affected by the tragic events.

When everything else in life seems heavy, sometimes I find comfort in the small things. No, I'm not trying to ignore the bad in the world, or pretend like nothing happened, but I find myself reaching for small joys, whether that be an extra smile from someone you love or something that puts a smile on your face. And in this case, something that brightens the smile on your face...

NARS Satin Lip Pencils. Ah-mazing.

NARS $25

Luxembourg is the first shade for my collection, but I think I need to add Yu and Palais Royal soon! This lip formula goes on smooth and wears like an extra rich stain. I find it an easier way to rock the more intense colors... hence my choices listed here!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Prayers for Boston

There are no words, just sadness. Sending love and prayers to Boston.


Monday, April 15, 2013

A Little Color Never Hurts

So as I'm out and about on the hunt for my first house, I've noticed an interesting trend... I seem to like any house that has a bright front door! It's just so happy!

Well, in continuation of that theme, I also think bringing a little color inside is the key to a happy home! You know I've talked about it a bit here, here and here, but of course there's more...

A little color goes a long way! These cute side tables pack a punch. 

green / red / yellow / blue
I'll take one of each. Please and thank you!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday 5: Picnics and Pastels

I'm going to start a new series here on ella.bella.bea&flo called "Friday 5." Each week I will post 5 things that have caught my eye over the past week. There is no telling where this will go since you can already tell it's a little of this -- a little of that kinda thing!

So off we go!

1. I think I need this cute mini pitcher from anthro. Wouldn't it be darling with some fresh flowers in it or used to serve your favorite house guest fresh juice for breakfast in bed? {petite pitcher $24}
2. Can J.Crew can do bad jewelry? Seriously, I'll take one of everything... but since that is not in my budget, I think I'll add this gem for now! {bracelet $27}
3. Picnic anyone? I'll bring the bubbly in this cute little carrier! {champagne tote $98}
4. Spring has finally sprung! And please be here to stay this time! It's time to brighten up my polish and this new Essie shade is right up my alley! {"under where?" polish $8}
5. And since I'm gonna pretty up my little piggies with said nail polish, I think I'll add these sandals to the top of my shopping list. {Sam Edelman $120}

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Frumpy to Fancy Again!

So remember when I updated a basic $6 sweatshirt to go from frumpy to fancy?

Well there is just something I love about a simple grey sweatshirt and I think it's time I update another! Here are a couple of cute options I am considering:

stitched to perfection

beauty in the back
I'm thinking using a wide ribbon for option 2 would be really cute!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mix It Like You Mean It

Meet Mia the Mixer:

I have recently become the proud owner of this beauty! Thanks MOM! She has been on my wishlist for quite a while {Mia, not my Mom... haha}, but just hadn't taken the plunge to purchase... boy was I missing out! 

Here are just a few recipes that I've tried {once. twice. THREE times or MORE}:

  1. Cookies 'n Cream cake and frosting
  2. Chocolate Peanut Butter Puppy Chow Brownies
    • Sidenote: the recipe linked here calls to use the pre-made/store-bought puppy chow... I'd actually recommend making the real stuff! It's soooo much better than the bagged version!
  3. Cookie Dough Brownie Bars
    • I really don't know what to call this heavenly creation... it's an Oreo cookie crust with a cookie dough and brownie filling, topped with a chocolate ganache. Lots of steps, but so worth it! 
Anyone else out there holding out on purchasing one of these babies because the price tag is a bit scary? If you enjoy baking, it's so very worth it! Makes my recipes a breeze and saves my arm from feeling like it is going to fall off! I'd say one of the hardest parts of purchasing is committing to a color... that sounds crazy, but it's true! I was tempted to go with a neutral color like a slate or pewter since I don't have my real kitchen yet and don't know what color it will be, but I later realized no matter when it is that I commit to a kitchen, it will definitely be colorful, so why not start with a great color for Mia the Mixer. And yes, I named my mixer. Don't judge... I feel like she's family since we've already spent so much time together. I name my cars, too. I'm cool like that.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Splurge or Save: Eyelet Skirt

On one of my recent work trips {that helped lead to my accidental blog break}, I hit up a new favorite city of mine -- San Francisco. Besides squeezing in a couple of touristy stops, I also did a little shopping. {By the way, I'd totally recommend making time for Alcatraz if you are planning a trip to San Fran... I usually shy away from tours and tourist activities in general, but it was really cool}. 

Anywho, back to my shopping outing... I not only stumbled upon some great local boutiques, but I checked out the San Francisco version of a couple of my usual stops: Nordy, Gap, J.Crew, Forever 21, H&M, etc. Why do I spend precious vaca time in stores I have at home? Well, it's been my experience that the bigger cities have a bigger and better selection than our stores sometimes have here in KC. And on top of that, with traveling so much, I really haven't had a ton of time to shop in KC anyway, so I'll take my stores wherever I can get them!

So, while in San Fran, I picked up a cute little eyelet skirt from Forever 21. I was impressed with the great quality and cute coral color {the color is much more pinky-melon than this pic below shows}. It was a perfect addition to my spring work and/or play wardrobe. Shortly after I brought it home, I spotted an almost identical style at the J. Crew Factory Store in a fab red color! L.O.V.E the RED! Had I not already bought the F21 version, little red would have for sure been coming home with me!

Splurge {$79.50} or Save {$19.80}

So you already know which way I went on this debate, but what would you do???

Monday, April 8, 2013

Blog Break by Accident

Well shoot! I took a blog break by complete accident! Bummer!

No excuses, my friends... life just got in the way. Between tons of travel for work over the past few months, fun times with friends and general life happenings, the blog went on hiatus. BUT I am back! There are exciting things coming up as my life continues to ebb&flo and I can't wait to share what comes next. 

Big thing on my to-do list these days? I'm on the house hunt! I've decided it's a good time in my life to make the switch from renting to owning. I'll be sure to keep you all updated on the process. I'm looking for a little gem with lots of charm and character. Something that needs a little tlc and lots of room for style.

Besides all of that, I am re-commiting myself to this little happy place. I truly started this blog to keep my creative juices flowing and I've definitely noticed myself in a bit of rut without it. ella.bella.bea&flo is a dream for me and I have big plans for where I hope to see it go in the future! Come along with me! Cans and plans, here we come...

Oh... and by the way, HAPPY 100th POST! Can't believe how quickly this little milestone popped up for us! Here's to many more milestones to come! CHEERS! xoxo