Outlet Shopping

My friend/business partner P. and I went to a medical conference last week in San Antonio, TX.

I lived there from 2005-2008, so this was a Homecoming of sorts for me.

I introduced her to the prickly pear margarita.

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And we saw Dolly.

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Yes, that was The Real Dolly. She was gracious and gorgeous in person.

I also had dinner with my dear friend J. and we had some of the most beautifully presented sushi I’ve ever had.

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Yes, two of those plates are on fire.

On our last day, P. and I also hit up the San Marcos Premium Outlets, which are about halfway between San Antonio and Austin, and all the way to Awesome. 

The last time I went to the outlets was two years ago, on a trip to Austin with my friend A. She and I both had extremely good luck with our finds and I was hoping that P. and I would have a similar fate.

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We did.

Here were the best deals of the day:

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At the start of our trip, P. and I both said that we wished we had a backpack for travel. The Tumi store did not disappoint. There were at least ten different styles, most for about half off retail. P. selected a more business-y version than the one above, which was my choice. It’s roomy and the chunky zippers make it casual enough for leisure travel.

Kate Spade had some witty finds, including this cute bunny coin purse:

And this tee:

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Yes, Glitter *is* my favorite color.

And how about that scarf?

It has a sibling:

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These Burberry scarves were an ok deal. I was disappointed because they had a lot of coats for about 75% off, but I didn’t quite find one that worked. I had to pump the brakes because I was finding all kinds of ways to justify buying an ill-fitting Burberry coat simply because it was a deal. Luckily P. said – nicely – to walk away, and I did. Sigh. No coat.

We also had a family photo last weekend and I also had the pressure to find something coordinating for us to wear. For Spouse and MGM (10), I found shirts at the Vineyard Vines outlet. This was my first time shopping there and I will be back. Trixie (8) got a sweater from J. Crew in a color that picked up the plaid pattern in Spouse’s shirt. I decided to repurpose a blouse I already had but added a sparkly necklace from the J. Crew outlet.

Overall, P. had similar luck. We had to stagger back to our hotel room and then comically cram our bags with our outlet finds to make it home.

The last bit of our trip found us having breakfast with my terrific friend L, who was kind enough to meet us in the A.M. even though she’d been up delivering babies all night.

Successful trip. I miss you, San Antonio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Snow of the Year

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It snowed last Friday.

I’m not sure why it always takes me by surprise, but winter’s on its way.

I’d planned to go for a medium-ish long run that morning but after peeking out the window, I reconsidered that decision.

Coffee seemed appealing.

Howling winds and blowing snow did not.

I surprised myself by going, particularly since my comfort zone is approximately 71-73 degrees Fahrenheit (Spouse corrected me when I told him this, saying it’s not a zone when it’s really more of a singular point, specifically 72 degrees F).

Not every moment of this run was pleasant, but I ticked past one, two and then three miles. Four and five came next, and by mile six I had turned a corner into a tailwind that took me the last half mile home.

As part of my running group, Fellow Flowers, I had planned to use this run to complete a virtual challenge called the Joy Run.

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Mission accomplished.

 

 

Madewell Candles & A Beauty Launch

Argh! I’m a bit late to post on this, seeing that one of the lovely candles I recently discovered now appears to be sold out.

Madewell launched a line of candles a few months ago, and I picked up a set of these as a gift, and then immediately purchased a second set for myself:

These are slightly larger than a votive and they’re hand poured here in Minnesota. The ceramic containers are supposedly re-usable once the candles are done.

The two pictured above are Fig Cassis and Cedar Vetiver, respectively, but the sold out one – which, sadly, was my favorite – came in a lovely millennial pink hue and is scented with Bergamot and Amber. Together, the three made a pretty trio and the palette is spot on for 2017. 

Even though millennial pink candle #1 may no longer be available, this new Bergamot and Amber edition is:

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Same tone, same scent. Millennial Pink #2.

The new candle release also includes this cute number:

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One more thing: Madewell also just launched Beauty Cabinet, an edited collection of  cosmetics that include French Girl Lip Tints.

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These Boots

Take a moment to appreciate these beauties:

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I saw a woman wearing these on an elevator last night, and I was so taken by their sheer awesomeness that I asked if I could take a picture. She obliged.

For context, I’m currently in San Antonio and many, many people were out celebrating Dia de los Muertos last night, but still. Swoon. I would wear these the other 364 days of the year, too. 

 

Lip Review

Lipgloss. How I love you.

Ever since I was a three year old eating Lipsmackers, I’ve had an ongoing relationship with all things lip and glossy.

Lipstick tends to get all over my teeth and since I’m not used to seeing myself in it, I always feel awkward when I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror as I try to rock a bright lip.

Gloss is my friend, and historically has been one of my favored pick-me-up treats to buy.

Recently I ordered three new-to-me lip products from Sephora.

Pop star Rihanna just launched her new Fenty Beauty line, and it basically broke the beauty internet. The collection (more than 90 items) is being praised for its extensive shades of foundation, but curiously, it only has one lip gloss.

This is called the Universal Lip Lumizer and is described as shiny, rose nude shade. The packaging is nice, the gloss is not too sticky, and the color is as billed. This is going to be a long, long reach, but this gloss reminds me – in both color and formula – of a Calvin Klein gloss that I had sometime in the 1990s. I think it was called Apricot.

Sidenote: Did you even know that Calvin Klein had a makeup line in the 90s? It was very minimalist in the packaging, and I recall liking their eye and lip glosses. The lipgloss came in a glass tube with a silver cap and the color I had was a near dupe of the Fenty one above. I used it until it dropped and broke. Sigh.

Eye Glosses

[In researching this post, it looks like cK had a revival of their cosmetics line about five years ago, but it seems to have suffered a similar fate as in the 90s since it no longer is available except on eBay and closeout/discount sites].

Back to the Fenty gloss: I would rate it as an 8/10 when considering color, consistency (not sticky but a bit thin, requiring re-application more than I would like), scent/taste (not sure if there is one, if so it is very subtle), and packaging (solid plastic body and cap that closes with a satisfying click twist at the end).

The second product I ordered was billed as a creamy argan lip butter with plumping ability. That is a lot to promise, but Josie Maran does it.

I thought this would be a shiny gloss in stick form, but the finish is more matte than I expected. To be fair, it is described as “satin finish” on the Sephora website, so I should have been warned. The plumping effect is minimal and comes from a pepper-y infusion that very mildly causes the lips to sting. It did not give a bee-stung effect as implied, but it also was not stinging to the point of irritation.

The color descriptions on Sephora’s website were not too clear, but I ended up ordering Free It, which is another rose/pink/nude shade. Josie Maran wins here on two accounts: the grapefruit scent (and taste) is really on point, and the packaging is also solid and features a small bump to click and hold the lid in place. I would rate this as a 7/10, with the high score relating to the grapefruit scent and the packaging. Without these, the finish is not my favorite and I would give it a 4 or 5 if the scent was bad and the case was cheap.

The final thing I received in this order was a freebie, but it’s a lip product and I’m going to still review it.

This is a sample of the Tarte Quench Lip Rescue in Buff. It’s described as having a high shine finish and retails for $19. The freebie size was considerably smaller than the retail version:

Here it is up against the Josie Maran lip butter (which is a standard size lipstick) for comparison.

This Tarte sample is what I thought the argan lip butter would be, namely a high shine lipgloss-in-a-stick. The formula is extremely creamy and the color is a subtle your-lips-but-slightly-more shade. The outer packaging is cardboard (i.e. not sturdy), but I can’t complain since this was a freebie. It’s probably not fair to rate it, but I liked the color and formula enough that I’m planning to buy a full sized version. It comes in eight different shades, including clear.