{Red Wine}

I guess if I wanted to be "in season" I would have titled this post ox blood.  Though I think this maroonish color is not dark enough to be ox's blood, even though I have to admit I have never seen ox blood in person.  But it does seem to be all the rage.  Whatever shade you want to call it, I like it.  Last year, I struggled to find shoes that I loved with this skirt, but I do love this look.  It is a little matchy, matchy, but with the printed top I feel good about it.  What do you think?  Happy Wednesday...again...J
Top {Zara}, Skirt/Scarf {Forever 21}, Shoes hand-me-downs from a friend {Kate Spade},  Purse {LV}, Sunnies {SEE}

{Diaper Bag}

Before you waste your breath on gasping...no I am not pregnant.  But I would like to introduce you to my diaper bag.  She is not new.  I have had her for about three years.  The regular M.Z. Wallace bags just were not the right size for me.  So then when I found this M.Z. Wallace diaper bag {it came complete with the little changing thing}, I thought why not.  I can carry about a bazillion things in it, and I loved the ice grey.  Also, I would not be lying if I told you I walk the dogs every morning in this sweater dress and Ugg boots.  I know for many of you Ugg boots are the cardinal sin of fashion.  But my mom and I were wearing them even before they were cool {not really sure they ever were cool}, and they are so comfy and cozy.  I am not ashamed.  Happy Wednesday...J
Sweater Dress {SuiteOne Boutique}, Scarf by Lovesmith {Hazel's Haven}, Boots {Frye}, Bag { Similar M.Z. Wallace}, Jewels {Forever 21 & DY}


{Love You: Chioma}

I am so sorry for the late morning post.  Per the usual this morning did not go as planned {think over sleeping, spilling coffee, and puppy time outs}, but I am so excited to be sharing this next "Love You" post.  I connected with Chioma over instagram where I also found here amazing polished looks to be filled with color and fun.  Then I developed a major style crush when I went to check out Chioma's Evolution of Style.  She doesn't know it, but she is one of those bloggers that I would probably run and hug if I met her in real life.  The fact that she has killer style does not hurt, but she comes across as warm, fun, and genuine.  So please read on to learn what Chioma is loving about herself.

"Hi everyone! I am Chioma fromChioma's Evolution of Style!  Thanks so much for having me! When Jessica contacted me in the summer to participate in her new “Love You” series, I was so flattered! Honestly it was a refreshing break from the features focused on pretty things and fashion. I began thinking of what I would say that I loved about myself that would not seem superficial. It has taken me a long time to become confident in myself and to genuinely love who I am as a woman, so I am excited to share a few of the things I love about myself with you!

  • I love that I am finally getting to know and love my natural hair - Almost two years ago; I decided I didn’t want to relax/perm my hair and opted to wear it in its natural texture. I wore braids for a year before I was ready to get my relaxed hair cut off and rock the natural curls that had grown in. It wasn’t easy in the beginning; in fact it was downright unnerving, but as time passed, I found myself walking with a new confidence I had never had before. Wearing my hair naturally, especially short and out in a fro, has truly helped me find my personal style. I got auburn highlights and began wearing huge statement earrings and bright colors to really accentuate my face and hair!
  • I love that I am a good judge of character - I have always had the spirit of discernment.  I am able to get “vibes” from people within minutes of meeting them. In the past, I have ignored my gut feeling and gotten close to people who would later prove to be unworthy of my trust and show their true colors. Other times I have known within minutes that the person I met was someone truly special who would be in my life forever, i.e., my FiancĂ©!!
  • I love that I am funny – Or should I say witty? At least that’s what I was voted in my high school superlatives! Ha! I laugh really loudly, from my belly, when something is funny to me. I like to bring humor to gloomy situations because I believe laughter is therapeutic. When my family & friends are down and I may not have the answer for them, I just make them laugh to cheer them up!
  • I love my legs - I hated my chicken legs as a teenager and always being one of the tallest in class growing up (and being taller than all the boys). But those same legs have helped me become a pretty good tennis and basketball player. Those same legs somehow manage to look toned even though I don’t workout as much as I should. And those same legs help me stand tall and make me look a lot leaner than I really am ;)
  • I love that I am about to become someone’s wife – I met my FiancĂ© in college and he is the caramel to my chocolate! ;o) He is my best friend and confidant, and he loves me and truly understands me, sometimes better than I do myself. He has broken down all the walls I put up and we have really grown up together. I love how smart, patient, kind, sweet, handsome, and thoughtful he is and he really is my better half. God truly blessed me with him and I love him so much. I look forward to becoming his wife, starting a family, growing old with him, experiencing the ups and downs in life together, and making life memories with my future husband."
Gosh...do you see what I am talking about.  Warm, approachable, kind, fun, like all my "Love You" gals I can't get enough of learning more about Chioma.  It is always hard to pick a favorite, but I love that Chioma highlights her good judge of character.  I often feel the same way, and am sometimes criticized by a few friends for being too shy initially, too cautious, or too skeptical, but you can't ignore those gut feelings.  There is actually a lot of reserach out there that explains that "gut" feeling we all talk about is based off of a lifetime of experiences, so we should never be quick to ignore it.  I also love that Chioma loves her really loud laugh.  We shoudl all laugh from the belly more often and the world would be a much happier place.  Thank you to Chioma, my new buddy, for taking time out of your busy schedule to share your loves with us.  I am so thankful to have virtually met you.  Now get out there this weekend and show yourself some love...J  


{Second & Dahlia's Style Steals}

As usual I fell in love with this little inspiration shot Michelle sent over yesterday.  I love soaking in the tub before bead to wash the day away.  Ad an amazing patterned tile, orchids, furniture in the bathroom, and I am pretty much in relaxing heaven.  My favorite picks for the day are Michelle's tile and that fun bag satchel from Zara.  What do you like best?  Happy almost weekend....J
P.S. If you have not gone to check out Michelle's new site here.  You must!!


{Backstreets Back}

So Backstreet is not really back to my knowledge...but I am...from NOLA.  I had such a fun weekend at my husband's company meeting.  We ate, we drank, we explored, and we shopped.  Of course the trip would not have been complete without three fun happenings.  First, I made a new buddy, one of Stuart's work friend's girlfriend, who also happens to have a fun fitness blog that you should check out here.  I am definitely going to try some of her workouts, though I am not sure my body is ready for them.  Second, I managed to completly wipe out Friday night on Bourbon Street.  I was not even three sheets to the wind, maybe one sheet, but certainly not three.  Stuart's friends did say it was a graceful wipeout, what more can I really ask for?  Third, after spliting an order of beignets at the famous Cafe Du Monde, I was feeling totally satisfied, and as I stood up I managed to knock an entire tray of coffees and beignets onto a poor by stander.  It was a scene.  I am still getting embarassed writing about it.  So there you have it, my trip to NOLA.  Did you do anything fun this weekend?  Happy Wednesday...J
Dress/Scarf/Sunnies {Forever 21}, Flats {Nine West}, Bag {Fendi}, Necklace {DahliaLynn Vintage}  


{Love You: How do I get there?}

I have had such an overwhelming response to the weekly "Love You" series that I have been brainstorming some ways to expand the series.  Sometimes loving you is easier than others, so I find a need a little help.  I love hearing why others love themselves to give me some inspiration, but love inspiration does come in all shapes and sizes.  I have been turning to Pinterest lately to create some spaces for love.  Have you found me on pinterest yet?  If not here are two great boards to get you started "Love You" and "Words."  I promise it will be difficult to look through these selected images and not feel a little glow.  See you here next Friday for another Love You share.  Lotsa Love...J


{Second & Dahlia's Style Steals: WHOOPS}

So do you see anything wrong with these pictures.  Well Michelle's pics look awesome.  Mine leave you wondering if I am colorblind.  I accidentally sent Michelle the wrong inspiration pic.  I swear sometimes I need help.  She was so sweet on her blog to describe the different directions we took with the inspiration photo rather than asking me if I had lost my mind when I sent the images over, next time I have encouraged her to just tell me I am crazy.  My favorite steals today are the amazing bed and the studded flats.  By the way, my buddy Michelle just launched a new site.  You MUST go check it out.  Can't decide yet which room in my house she will be helping me with, but stay tuned for some real life style fun with us later on this year.  Happy Thursday...J


{Front Porch Livin}

So a big must on our list when house hunting was porch space.  We really lucked out with our new place as we have a big porch that runs the length of the house in the front and an amazing screened in porch in the back that has the feel of an adult tree house.  We have been working really hard the past several months to fix up the front yard.  When we bought our house the yard was somewhat of a dangerous secret garden meets the jungle.  There were days I felt I needed to be armed with a machete to get to the mailbox.  I am happy to report that we are well on our way to completing our front yard transformation.  I don't want to share pictures until we have gotten grass in the front, but we have been spending lots of spare time hanging on the porch with the pups since we got our fence up.  Here are a couple of shots of my lazy Sunday.  The best part about this outfit is the amazing ice, blue infinity scarf from the talented Mrs. Amanda Moore, who will be selling these babies at Hazel's Haven in my hometown, Fort Smith, AR.  Mark your calendars for the grand opening November 2nd.  Happy Wednesday...J
Scarf {lovesmith by Amanda Moore}, Top {Forever 21}, Skirt {J.Crew}, Jewels {Anthropologie, Pangea, Forever21}, Shades {SEE}, Boots {Minnetonka similar here


{Pattern Party}

It is that time of year again when I love to pull a little roundup from past blog posts together.  It is fun for me to see my style in pictures as it evolves, and it also inspires me to pull some of those old duds out of the closet.  Do you have a favorite look??  Happy Tuesday again...J

{THIS not THAT: Mexican Blanket}

 So you remember the old "THIS in THAT" posts that I like to do.  Well here is a new twist.  While searching the web this morning for a fun room that incorporated a mexican blanket, I came up with not a whole lot from the interior design world as it relates to cute pictures using a mexican blanket as decor.  I did, however, stumble upon several looks that left me stunned at the ways people were using mexican blankets.  Who every knew there was a mexican blanket bra top out there?  Thanks Asos....because now I know that they not only exist, but where to buy one.  This inspired me to do a new twist on my old favorite and write about THIS not THAT.  I would definitely love to kick the cool weather in the face with THIS sweet little mexican blanket jacket.  But the image of myself in THAT mexican blanket bra could give me nightmares.  But a huge high five out there to my ladies, who I know would rock it.  Happy Tuesday...J


{Love You: Rainbow Bright}

So I know this special "Love You" post is a couple of days late.  I had a big event this past Friday that took lots of my time.  I interrupt my regular "Love You" posts to send a little love in support of National Coming Out Week.  The loves I have for this week are pretty simple. 

1.  I love having the opportunity to support all of the individuals around me that idenitfy at LGBTQI.  Though I try my best each day to be a good ally, it feels so special to have an entire week to show those around us the love and suppor they deserve for just being who they are.

2.  I love rainbows!  Not only because they are pretty, but because they are a sign of inclusivity.  They remind us all that no matter our color, shape, size, gender, sexuality, language, religion, political views, insert whatever makes us each unique and special, we should work each day to create environemnts that are welcoming to all.

3.  I love that after years of asking questions and working to educate myself that I have become more knowledgable about LGBTQI issues, so I can better support my friends and those around me that identify as LBGTQI.  I have a long way to go don't get me wrong, but each step closer makes me a better ally. 

4.  I love that this week reminds me how thankful I am for having friends that are different from me, so we can learn from one another.  Looking at you in particular Alison and Siobhan, so thankful to have you all in my life!!

Don't forget to show some LGBTQI love today and all days because I don't know a better way to start off this week.  Happy Monday...J


{Second & Dahlia Style Steals}

Helloooo Lovelies!!  I am so excited for this weekend because my sweet parents are driving in to town as we speak.  I have a HUGE event at work tomorrow, that I cannot wait to share with you.  I will be snapping pictures like crazy tomorrow night.  But for today, we will talk Style Steals.  Favorite picks today are the amazing light fixture Michelle found and the slouchy hat I found.  I loved this picture that Michelle sent over of Bill and Kathy Lee Joel's dining room.  So simple and elegant.  I feel like no matter how hard I try, the rooms in my house never look this sleek, but so lived in.  Maybe it is because of my tendency to walk in the house and start throwing things around.  A scarf by the chair at the front door, shoes by the dogs kennels, my heavy necklaces usually come off somehwere around the kitchen as it might be annoying me while cooking.  I am as bad as a toddler.  And I love things organized...the irony.  Happy Thursday...J




Are you grossed out by the post title?  I am sorry, but I had to grab your attention.  I waltzed into my buddies brunch on Sunday that was hosted by one of my favorite Nashville people and a friend of hers, who sells Arbonne.  I am such a sucker for those things, by the end of the brunch I was convinced that I needed several things, one type of firming lotion that is nicknamed the "Pot of Gold" was at the top of my list.  

But I am getting sidetracked.  So Victoria the Arbonne consultant was explaining that the types of fillers many American makeup companies use contain broken down animal carcasses.  This animal "sludge" filler material actually goes into many lip sticks.  Of course I was the only fool there with bright red lip stick, so everyone seemed to immediately turn and look at my MAC "Ruby Woo" lips.  It is uncomfrotable to feel like the only one wiht "sludge" lips in the room.  Will be doing reserach this weekend to see if MAC uses "sludge" filler.  Ewww, but on a happy note....Happy Wednesday...J

Sweater/Necklace {Forever 21}, Skinnies/Flats {J.Crew},  Sunnies {SEE}, Scarf {Got on my honeymoon in Hawaii from a random little spot}