Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Family Fun at Medieval Times

Over the holiday weekend I did something with my family that I had never done before, we went to Medieval Times. My husband had been there once about 20 years ago, so it was really a first time thing for all of us. You guys, it was a blast! When we first pulled up the kids were whispering that we were at a castle and inquiring if we would see a princess. We played into the concept of stepping back in time and reminded the children there was not even silverware here. My daughter was in awe of the building, so much so that we did a loop around the front to see the castle in all it's glory (see above photo) before parking. 

All tickets are general admission but like anywhere these days there are lots of options for upgrades and shopping. We obviously upgraded to "VIP King's Royalty Package" which included early access to our seats, front row, a knight's rally towel, cheering banner, VIP lanyard, and framed group photo for each person in our group. Go big or go home, right?! Once you get past the line there are two bars and a few areas to shop and as well as photo opportunity areas. Everyone stays in this area until you are called to be seated. It is beautifully decorated and if you follow me on IG (@StilettosandDiaperBags) or Snapchat (@StilettosandDB), you no doubt saw me live streaming that night!

As the show begins you are taken back in time. The staff (including the servers, people who work in the booths and at the stores, as well as the actors in the show) all commit to making you feel like you are in a time warp. All of a sudden a misty fog covers the ground and this gorgeous gray horse with long hair is running around as a story is told over the intercom. My kids faces were priceless. Next we are introduced to the King and Princess. Again, a highlight for my kids for sure. OK, I was impressed and excited of what was to come too!

The meal begins with soup and bread followed by half of a chicken, potatoes, & corn. You are then finished off with pound cake. All to be enjoyed sans silverware. That was definitely fun to do while watching the show in the partial dark! My son eats a gluten free diet and they made sure to not serve him the bread and even brought him Italian ice for dessert. The food was really good! I was pleasantly surprised as I didn't know what to expect other then a good show that is. 

We were seated in red and the red knight tossed my daughter this flower. She was beyond excited about this! We cheered him on during different games until the final battle when our knight was the winner. He had to keep going though to protect the princess and fight once more and won! All four of us were yelling and cheering, it was really a fun show that we all got very wrapped up in. 

On a side note, the people in the show are amazing. To be able to control your horse while jousting and sword fighting plus the stamina of it all was super impressive. I'm sure the winner changes each time, but whoever wins has to battle a few times to be the end winner. I would have been passed out by round two wearing that gear! ;) 

If you have never been or it has been a while since your last visit, I totally recommend checking out Medieval Times! My kids talked the entire way home about when they want to go next, I believe they agreed one of them is having a birthday party there soon!

Need more of a reason to go, how about a great deal? Purchase your tickets now under “Feasting, Fun & Savings,” where using the code FEAST16 will get you adult tickets for $40.95 & kids for $30.95! (May not be combined with any other offer or group rate. Tax, gratuity and applicable fees are additional. Upgrades are additional. Not valid on prior purchases. Not valid for NYE show. Valid at the Chicago castle only for shows through 1/31/17)

*I was gifted tickets to the show, but all of the above opinion are my own! 

Monday, November 28, 2016

Holiday Style, Wrapped in a Bow

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When it comes to dressing for all the holiday parties ahead there are certain accessories you can wear and re-wear to stay looking super chic each and every time. These bow heels are a perfect example. I have worn them over a dozen times the past three years, and each time it give the outfit the right amount of holiday spirit. 

As far as holiday style, I say keep it classic. I generally wear dresses to most events, ones that I love and are unique. This dress was picked up last year and it was literally the last one selling on Shopbop. For that reason alone (I love having limited quantity items in my wardrobe) I picked it up and each time I wear it I get so many compliments! The dress is 100% sheer so I had to find the perfect bandeau and slip, but those are items we should all have in our wardrobe anyway, right? 

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Shop bow shoes:

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Dress: c/o Shopbop // Shoes: JustFab (similar) // Bag: Nordstrom (similar) // Watch: Fossil // Ring: House of Harlow 1960 // Lip Color: gloMinerals- Crimson

photos by Cecilia Jean

What are your go-to pieces for holiday style? Do you own bow shoes?

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year....

Happy almost Thanksgiving everyone! It really is the most wonderful time of the year. Tomorrow we will get together with family and no doubt eat way too much before the shopping frenzy begins on Black Friday. For me, the shopping has already began as I like to start early. Another thing I like to do early? Get my Christmas card ready so I can send them out the Monday after Thanksgiving! 

Every year I look forward to Christmas cards. Not just making our own, but receiving cards from all my fiends and family as well. In my home we display all of the cards we receive and I love looking at them everyday, they become part of our holiday decor. This year, unlike years past, I had professional photos taken of my family. We ended up with about 120 pictures and I am in love with them all. I actually got the digital copies of these two days before I designed this years Christmas card, so it made the process of choosing the right card that much more fun. 

When it comes to making my holiday cards, I choose Tiny Prints. The process is so fun and also very easy to navigate through and save your work as drafts as you go. You can customize every step from he shape of the card-stock, to the lining of the envelope, to how many (or few) photos you want to add. Heck, you can even pick more photos or a fun print like polka dots or stripes for the backside of the cards as well. The customizability options are truly endless. When I made last year's card, I knew I wanted to go with red tones. This year I wanted to try a color scheme. Here are the four cards I designed before I picked this years card:

Option one:

I thought this one was super cute. I absolutely love the print on the back of the card, but decided this was not going to be "the one".  

Option two:

I love the snowflakes! This one is short, sweet, to the point, and not to mention beautiful. I love the round edges and simplicity. OK, we have a new front runner folks. I quickly saved this one to my drafts and moved onto the next option.

 Option three:

Every year we receive cards like this one, but we have never sent out a card like this one. I wanted to at least try it out since we had so many wonderful photos from our photo shoot this year. This style card folds twice (kind-of accordion like) giving front and back views of family shots. I loved the idea of this card, but again not "the one". 

 Option four:

And we have our winner people! I love the gold and black. In all of my family Christmas cards that I have ever sent out we have never used these colors. Again, I went with the round edges and we even have a stripe insert inside the envelope (photo on Instagram today). I am so happy with my cards and can not wait to send them out next week! 

Head over to Tiny Prints and make your perfect holiday card. Today and tomorrow you can receive 40% off by using code GIVETHANKS & free shipping off orders $49+ with code FREESHIP49. After Friday you can check here for up to date coupon codes.

Where do you go for your holiday cards? Do you love this tradition as much as I do?

Family photos taken by Sheena Jane Photography 

*I was gifted my cards from Tiny Prints but that in no way altered my opinions stated above. 

Monday, November 21, 2016

The Perfect Pinstripe Pants

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I recently took photos for my annual Christmas Card (full post on that coming this Wednesday), and this is what I wore for the photo shoot. The color scheme for the entire family was black, oxblood, and gray and honestly I threw together all four of our looks on about three days notice. Spoiler alert, I nailed it! The shoes I am wearing here are actually oxblood, which showed during my sitting photos. I was wearing a statement necklace, but decided to ditch it to keep the focus of the photos on my beautiful family and not my sparkly gems.

Now let's talk this simple yet put together outfit. I am obsessed with these wide leg pants! The pinstripe and mid-rise waist just draw you eye in and makes your legs look so much longer then they are. This is the second time my bell sleeved turtleneck is making a blog appearance in the past week and sorry not sorry, I love it! I finished my look off with an emerald colored bag, bronze eye shadows, and a bright lip. I really loved this outfit and I will most likely wear it again this holiday season.

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Top: Threadsence (similar) // Pants: Trouve via Trunk Club // Bag & Shoes: JustFab

What do you think of this pairing? Are you a fan of these pinstriped pants?

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Walking in an Autumn Wonderland....

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Just look at this gorgeous bed of leaves! I've said it before and I will say it again, this is the prettiest Fall I ever did see. I decided to do a bit of play-on-color as I styled this gorgeous turtleneck maxi dress. By adding the plum boots and colorful scarf the outfit began to take shape. The purple lip and green bag were the last two additions. In the end, I loved wearing this outfit. So much so that since these photos were taken, I have worn this exact outfit two other times! Sometimes there's no need to fix what is not broken. ;)

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Shop the look: 

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Dress: c/o J.Jill // Scarf: c/o Cabi // Boots: Michael Kors via Trunk Club // Bag: JustFab // Sunglasses: Kate Spade // Cuff: Coach (similar & under $30!) // Rings: c/o Park Lane Jewelry // Lip Color: Colour Pop

Photos by Cecilia Jean

Have you ever worn a turtleneck maxi dress before? This one is so cozy, you'll never look back once you put it on!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Dressed up Joggers

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I am all about comfortable fashion, in fact, I think I talk about it almost every week! I just strongly believe that you do not need to compromise one for the other. OK, so technically these pants are not traditional joggers (they are called "easy pants"), but anything with an elastic waist band and is made of the softest possible material is a jogger in my book. And when I say these pants are soft, I'm not doing them justice. I wish you could feel butter! I could easily live in this outfit. Fact.

I added a classic wardrobe staple, this striped turtleneck, and kept the outfit styling super simple. By adding this giant scarf, gray pumps, and a bright lip, this look went from feeling like pajamas to ready for the runway. My life runway that is. ;) I did have a bit of a strut in my step this day. Why not look chic but feel like you are in your pjs? This combo will be on major repeat the next few months.

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Shop the look:

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Turtleneck: c/o Cabi // Pants: c/o J.Jill // Shoes: JustFab // Scarf: Free People via Trunk Club // Bag: TJ Maxx (similar) // Hat: Gap (similar) // Sunglasses: c/o Sole Society // Lip Color: gloMinerals-Sorbet

Photos by Cecilia Jean

Are you a fan of dressing up joggers? What do you think of this pairing?