Outfit Effort - Minimal... Spanx - Necessary.

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Is there an outfit easier to wear that gives this much chic-ness? I don't think so. Sometimes the simplest outfits give the most dramatic effect (and you save time not worrying about pairing things together)! I fell in love with this Alice + Olivia t-shirt dress the minute I saw it. It comes with a belt but I chose to leave it off for this lewk. Oversized sweater dresses and long tunics look amazing paired with over-the-knee boots so this outfit was a breeze to style.

I opted for a low pony to show off the open neckline of this piece. You know I don't wear a ton of jewelry so of course, I kept that to a minimum as well. The best secret for pulling off a look like this is proper undergarments! I LOVE my Spanx and wear them all the time! They smooth everything and in any case, make sure that however the wind blows, my ass cheeks won't show!!! I don't have time to be "adjusting" all day so with these Spanx on I can be confident that I won't flash anyone, haha! I also usually ditch any bra with an underwire in favor of the most comfortable Calvin Klein one. Don't worry, I've linked everything at the end of this post! What are some easy outfits you like to style? 

Honorable Mention to my hubby Brandon who is enjoying this whole "photographer" thing - I think he's doing a great job! xoxoxoxo

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12th Annual Buddy Walk

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This past weekend I participated in the Lowcountry Down Syndrome Society 12th Annual Buddy Walk on Team Trinity. If you don't know who Trinity is, here is a little background on how we first met (click here!) The purpose of this walk is to raise awareness of Down syndrome & celebrate the journey that the families take together. THOUSANDS of people showed up for the walk & festival afterwards. Trinity was joined by her parents - Gregory & Nina Gardner and her 4 siblings Sariah, Zion, Jordan & Christian, as well as her grandmother and a few family friends! 

Nina recently did an interview with Savannah Morning News and this is what she had to say about Trinity - 

“I want Trinity to do everything that I want for my other kids,’’ Nina Gardner said. To have a job and earn her own money. Have a spouse. Have a family. Have happiness. We don’t see her as any different.’’

The Buddy Walk was definitely a celebration! Here are a few pictures of all of the fun - can you believe how big Judah has gotten?!? 

Trinity & her younger brother Christian with the Savannah Banana! 

Trinity & her younger brother Christian with the Savannah Banana! 

Trinity & one of her MANY friends

Trinity & one of her MANY friends

Trinity and I about 1/4 of the way through the walk. 

Trinity and I about 1/4 of the way through the walk. 

Trinity & her dad next to her picture for this year's LCDSS calendar. 

Trinity & her dad next to her picture for this year's LCDSS calendar. 

Team Trinity! 

Team Trinity! 

Trinity & Judah next to her poster section. 

Trinity & Judah next to her poster section. 

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Pumpkin decorating after the walk. 

Pumpkin decorating after the walk. 

To keep up with Trinity, her family and Judah - you can follow them on Facebook (here) or Judah's very own Instagram page (here)!  Nina also wants everyone to know that you shouldn't put limits on people with Down syndrome, and I agree!!! 

xoxo, 

Meredith 

Will It Ever Be Fall in Georgia?

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I type this behind furious fingers. I can't believe it's 80 degrees outside today, October 9th. I REFUSE to wear anything that even remotely resembles "summer." I packed up all of my bikinis and shorts this weekend, IN FACT! I may or may not have sweat during this entire photo session yesterday, but it's ok because I spend the majority of the day inside anyway. This outfit is so simple to throw together - you may even have these staples in your closet already! I opted for a faux leather pair of pants that I've had for a few years worn under this Topshop trench coat. Add your favorite black booties, and you are trés chic! Let's not forget to mention MY FAVORITE NAIL COLOR OF ALL TIME. Seriously, this is THE BEST COLOR YOU WILL EVER OWN. I don't care that it cost $28 - it's worth every single bit. If you've never owned a YSL nail polish - you must try it. The brush is perfection - makes it so easy to paint on. This color is #36 Vert D'orient, & I have repurchased it several times. All of the items in this outfit are old, so I have linked similar new items that you can find in stores now. 

What fall trends are you most excited to wear? Are you still wearing summer clothes or are you sweating through your thigh high boots?!? I saw someone yesterday at a coffee shop in a full-on Easter Sunday Lilly Pullizter dress, I kid you not. 

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The Red Bootie

Bottom Left via Who What Wear || Top Right - Fendi

Bottom Left via Who What Wear || Top Right - Fendi

Can I just say how much I am LOVING red at the moment? These red Fendi boots are stunningly bold, so when I saw an affordable pair at Zara, I jumped! I've decided to let the boots be the star of this outfit by pairing it with a simple black top and Topshop jeans. I can't wait to pair them with skirts & dresses as well. You will definitely be seeing a ton of RED this season... in beauty & fashion! Check out a few more images of this look below. I hope you have a great Friday & weekend!! 

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Diary of a Modern Dog Mom

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Blue - 8, Maltese, has "shrimp breath"  Daisy - 12, Shih-Tzu, now requires a pill box to keep up with all of her medicine.  

Blue - 8, Maltese, has "shrimp breath"  Daisy - 12, Shih-Tzu, now requires a pill box to keep up with all of her medicine.  

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Don't ask my why I already had a dog stroller, just know that I'm damn sure glad I did - our 12-year old Shih-Tzu decided to completely freak us out this past weekend with an overnight stay at the Emergency Vet! She came home with medicine for congestive heart failure & high blood pressure. Brandon and I have both sensed her "slowing down" this year so we were certainly scared and very sad. One of our favorite things to do as a family on the weekends is walk from our apartment to Sunday breakfast. Depending on where we go, it's usually a mile & a half walk to the restaurant and back. Blue can walk for days but now Daisy can join us without having to break a sweat. :-) They LOVED this damn stroller - best $50 ever spent on Amazon. Let's also not forget that we had Blue's teeth cleaned last week - so I've spent a fortune on my dogs within the past 7 days. 

Now for the outfit - Fall is my FAVOURITE time of year. The summer heat in Savannah makes it hard to stay fashionable so as soon as this time of year rolls around, I'm dying to jump right back in to outfit planning. I was so inspired by seeing all of my favorite bloggers sharing BTS from #NYFW. This Zara dress is insanely comfortable and the color is perfection. Definitely need Spanx underneath (I linked my favorites below). I've also been wanting a white leather pair of boots since Balenciaga had some a while back - I waited bc I knew that some other designers would come out with a pair at a more realistic price point. 

Red is THE COLOR for this fall & winter but this gorgeous blue is one of my favorites to wear during the cooler months. All outfit details are linked below & I've included several "Look For Less" options as well. 

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Dress: Zara $39.90 - go ahead and click here to order it. You have my permission. 

Dress: Zara $39.90 - go ahead and click here to order it. You have my permission. 

Work in Progress + My New Obsession

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I'm a believer in the timing of the universe and yesterday I came across a quote on Instagram that really resonated with me.

"You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and a work in progress." - Sophia Bush

If you've been following along with my social media lately, you may have noticed that I've been working on the whole "mind, body, spirit" thing. I've been making small changes to my day to day life in hopes that I will have more energy and clarity of mind to accomplish all of the things I want to do, while maintaining a sense of balance in my life. When you're trying to make these changes, it can be easy to be really hard on yourself and feel like a failure or a phony - but this quote serves as a reminder that you are great, in this very moment. Last week I talked about my morning routine and this week I wanted to share a new obsession......... 

I've become OBSESSED with podcasts again! I find they are a very valuable tool and make it simple to absorb helpful information during times such as getting ready in the morning and whenever I'm driving in the car alone. I listen to business, lifestyle & entertainment podcasts. A few that I've been loving are: 

  • The Read (Hip-hop & pop culture with bloggers Kid Fury & Crissle. "On-air therapy session for 2 friends trying to adjust to life in the big city.")
  • No Limits with Rebeca Jarvis (She speaks with the most influential women about how they built their empires - mistakes, riskiest decisions & breakthrough moments. The one she did with Rebecca Minkoff - wow!)
  • TED Talks Daily - I like that these are very brief podcasts and the variety of topics is endless.
  • Heather Dubrow's World - Heather is queen of Fancy Pants and so far I've enjoyed listen to her interview Catt Sadler & Morgan Stewart. 

Do you listen to podcasts? If so, let me know which ones have been helpful to you! I just LOVE soaking in information!!! You should always take advantage of learning opportunities and opportunities for growth. 

Another newbie - I completed my first Orange Theory Fitness workout last night. I've been searching for the "right" workout for me and I think this may be it! I get bored in a gym and cardio is not my favorite. I did well with the group environment because it adds a bit of competition and I PUSHED MYSELF SO HARD for that hour. My friend Lauren had been going for a while so I was happy to have a friend there! As little as a one hour workout is in the grand scheme of life - I was really proud of myself. To be perfectly honest, my Monday evening at home typically consists of drinking wine ("stress reliever") and watching TV... and not much else! I broke this habit yesterday by scheduling the workout & picking up a healthy dinner from Zoe's Kitchen. By the time I got home - I didn't want the wine.    WORK IN PROGRESS.

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JEANS - ZARA (CLICK HERE)  TOP - H&M (CLICK HERE)  SHOES - (SIMILAR)

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Taking Time to Plan my Morning Routine

I’ve read so many times that successful people begin their day by waking up earlier. “They” usually have some sort of morning routine or ritual that is followed, supposedly. Personally I enjoy taking my time in the morning. I don’t like to rush. I like to make the bed. And on and on. I'm also obsessed with reading about people's morning routines. It's like I think there is some magic plan that makes other people achieve on a higher level. 

Earlier this week I shared that I have been feeling a bit out of line with myself, so on Monday night I drank wine, watched OC Housewives and made a list of all of the things I want/need to do in the morning before I go to the office. I also went back and wrote down how long each task took to complete. This is legit the stuff I wrote down - 

Keep in mind this is not necessarily the order in which these things do or need to occur - I just wrote the shit down. I was pleased to see that I only NEED to get up a 6:30 to make all of these items happen in order to leave at 8. I’m trying to work out 3 times a week in the morning so I’m encouraged that I could wake up at 5:30, have a solid 45 min work out and still be able to leave at 8:00. 5:30 is early but not unthinkable. 

A few notes - 

    • I REALLY need to meditate more! I mediated on our flight back from Miami last week and OMG it made me feel so peaceful. I have an app called “Stop, Breathe & Think” that makes it easy for people like me to meditate. “dishes” includes cleaning off water bottles/wine glass from our bedside tables. 
    • I actually did wake up early on Tuesday and went to a Hot Pilates class. I am NOT, I repeat- am NOT a talker in the morning. I prefer to keep to myself before coffee is had. I sat in the back of the class next to an older gent with his shirt off & yoga pants on. Throughout the entire class he kept fist-bumping me and looking over at me. I’m sure he felt it was a way to “encourage the new-comer” but for the love of God I am not the fist-bumping type and I’m pretty self-motivated & a fast learner so while the class was my first, I had no problem keeping up or “learning the moves.” I also do not want to make eye contact or hear excessive "noises" whilst hip-thrusting and glute-squeezing. He probably thought I was a bitch because towards the end I was cringing to avoid eye contact. I’m not my best self before coffee and I don’t want to deal with others at 6:00 in the morning.

Do any of you have anything specific that you do in your morning routine? IF you meditate - how did you learn to do so? Did you read a specific book or do you use an app?