Fall, Fashion, WInter

Keeping it Cozy Casual with H&M + Target + Adidas

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Top: Target | Joggers: H&M |  Sneakers: Adidas | Sunglasses: Amazon 

This is normally my uniform throughout the week believe it or not. I LOVE to dress up but some days that is just not realistic. I work from home so dressing up for me is not always necessary. 

This outfit is all my favorite basics. These long sleeve tee’s are my absolute favorite. They are super soft and they wear and wash well! They are $10 and I usually stock up on a few in each color. My sneakers are one’s you’ve probably seen before. They are the adidas swift run sneakers. These are hands down my favorite style of tennis shoes. They are SO comfy and lightweight. I bought B and my father in law a pair bc they are THAT good. I even got my sister hooked on these. 

My joggers are from H&M! If you haven’t shopped H&M lately, I highly recommend checking them out. They have SO many cute pieces right now. I did a try on session earlier in the week and shared a few items from my recent order. If you missed it, I saved it to my highlights on Instagram.

I don’t know about you but I am SO glad it is Friday! I had such a busy week. 

What are your weekend plans? I think I’m gonna try and sleep in this weekend. I’ve been waking up at 5:30/6 everyday (yes even on the weekends) for the past few months like clock work. 

Thank you for stopping by! 

Fashion, WInter

$30 Sweater Dress

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Dress: Missguided | Boots: Shoedazzle available in 3 colors (Similar options HERE, HERE, and a Amazon Prime option HERE)  |

Scarf: Old BP/Nordstrom  | Earrings: Similar HERE 

This might be one of of my favorite looks I’ve styled so far this winter. If you look on my IG you might notice that I gravitate toward neutral outfits. I think they are SO classic and effortless. I saw this dress on Missguided’s website and I HAD to get it. It is at a SUCH a great price point AND Missguided ALWAYS has sales, I’m talking like everyday!! This dress comes in a few colors and I am SO tempted to grab another. I sized up for length and to cover the bump. It was a tad big but I do think it is meant to be oversized. You will for sure see me styling this dress again.

As much as I love this dress, I love these boots I have on just as much! I have them in a few colors. I got them from Shoedazzle in December when there was a sale but they are still very affordable and a fraction of the price of the ones you see everyone and their sister wearing on Instagram. I went on a hunt and found a few other brands with this same exact style boot for you all incase Shoedazzle didn’t have your size. I was shocked when I found THESE on Amazon prime. The reviews for these boots are great, I’m thinking about ordering the grey pair. 

As always, I tried to link all outfit details above for you! If you ever have any questions about what I am wearing PLEASE feel free to reach out. :)

Before I sign off I wanted to remind you of the LV giveaway going on in my IG feed. The last day to enter is the 18th so make sure you enter before then!! You can find how to enter in the caption of the original picture on my feed. I am SO excited to see who wins bc I LOVE my LV Neverfull. 

Thank you so much for stopping by! Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever shopped at Missguided! 

 

Fashion, WInter

Styling Color Block

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Dress: Missguided | Boots:  Shoedazzle available in 3 colors (Similar options HEREHERE, and a Amazon Prime option HERE 

Bag: Steve Madden (Similar HERE)  | Earrings: Charming Charlie (Similar via Amazon Prime for $9 HERE)

HAPPY MONDAY! How is it Monday already? The weekends FLY by.

One of my absolute favorite trends is color block. I tend to buy a lotttt of color block during the fall and winter. I saw this dress and added it to my cart so fast. It must have been super popular because it sold out FAST. :/ I did link the other color block dresses from Missguided. The boots are one of my most worn items so far this season. They are super comfortable yet SO stylish! 

Now that I am in my 3rd trimester, I’ve been trying to keep outfits as “easy” as possible. Luckily I haven’t gained too much weight so I’ve been able to get by with wearing my pre-pregnancy jeans but they are just too much work to get on at this point LOL. 

I already know I’m going to get questions on this bag. This is one of my TJMAXX finds. It is SUCH a good bag. I unfortunately haven’t had any luck find it online but I was able to find one similar on Amazon Prime! I have been LOVING Amazon lately for fashion finds. I actually have an Amazon Dupes post coming your way later this month.

I hope you all had a great weekend. We had a pretty low-key weekend. I had quite a bit of work to catch up on and B was glued to the TV watching playoff games. I did get some house work done though. I feel like I’m never going to recover from the holidays. My house isn STILL in shambles. LOL 

FYI incase you missed it, I wanted to let you all know that there is currently a LV giveaway going on in my Instagram feed. You will have to head to my profile for instructions on how to enter!!

Thank you for stopping by!! I hope you enjoyed today’s post. 

Fashion, WInter

Waffle Knit Top You NEED In Your Closet

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Top: Ivory James Boutique |  Leggings: Zella  More affordable option HERE  | Beanie: Similar HERE

Slippers: Similar HERE  | Necklace: Amazon | Watch: MK | Bracelet: Amazon

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that we spent the past weekend in Gatlinburg with our family. We stayed in the most adorable cabin, it was so much fun to get everyone together and see all my nieces and nephews playing. I snapped these photos one morning while B and I were sitting on the back deck before breakfast.

 At this point in my pregnancy I am ALL about comfort. I think I wear leggings pretty much everyday LOL. This is like a perfect outfit for those like me who just like to be comfortable. 

This waffle knit top is a DREAM. It is SO soft and actually is in stock in two other colors. I think that this top would be perfect for moms who are breastfeeding. The best part is that TODAY only it is on sale for $19.99! Sizes and quantities are limited so I’d snag them ASAP!

Like I said above, leggings have been a MUST during pregnancy. I have a few different brands that I rotate through. I will say that my Zella leggings are one of my favorites. I know Zella can be kinda pricey BUT they are worth it. If you are just not wanting to take the plunge and spend $50+ on leggings (which is totally understandable) I found a great alternative.  Zella actually carries a line called Z by Zella at Nordstrom Rack which is a fraction of the price. The quality is VERY similar to the original Zella leggings. There 5 colors currently in stock and the reviews are great. I was able to pop into Nordstrom Rack before I left for our trip and try them on and they feel SO good on and pass the squat test. I was going to purchase them in store BUT the line was literally a mile long and I was pressed for time. I did order them online and I am glad that I waited bc they had more colors/size options available on the site. I highly recommend these as a budget friendly everyday legging option.

 OK, I am going to stop myself here bc I have so much to catch up on & we all know I could talk ALL day.

I love traveling but HATE the process of unpacking. I am also trying to clean the house, take down Christmas decor and tackling my to-do list. Just typing that out makes me want to already take a nap LOL.  

I hope you all had a fantastic New Years Day!

Thank you for stopping by today. 

Beauty

Current Skin Care Routine + How To Achieve Clear Skin

For me I have never really struggled with acne but more so texture and uneven skin. I used to have a really bad habit of going to bed with my makeup and which clogged my pores SO bad. I never cared about my skin care routine much until I found one that really worked for me and TRANSFORMED my skin. Now I really don’t have to wear makeup and when I do my makeup looks SO good.

TYJ for good skin care products!! 🙌🏽

I recently shared a few of my favorite skin care products on my instagram stories and got a ton of questions so I decided to make a full post of all the products I currently use.

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1. Clinique Liquid Mild Face Soap: This is the cleanser I use every morning. I prefer to use a gentle cleanser in the AM as I tend to use my more harsh products at night. This face wash goes a LONG way. You only need a small amount because it lathers really well.

2. Estēe Lauder DayWear Eye: This is personally my favorite part of my morning skin care. This eye cream is cooling so it feels SO good under your eyes to make them feel more awake and to get rid of any bags under your eyes.

3.Sephora Moisturizer: This has been my go to moisturizer before my makeup for about a year now. Not only is it hydrating but it is also mattifying so it helps keep my makeup on all day.

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1. Pure and Gentle Face Wipes: These are hands down my favorite makeup wipes. The best part is they are literally like 98 cents at Walmart! These wipes are SO moist. They are oil and fragrance free so they are perfect for removing eye makeup if you have lash extensions. I use these to take off all my makeup before going in with my cleanser.

2.Estēe Lauder Gentle Eye Makeup Remover: If I wear eyeliner or dark eye shadows I will go in with this makeup remover. It removes makeup SO well and it doesn’t burn your eyes at all. A little goes a long way so I typically don’t have to repurchase but every other month or two.

3.Estēe Lauder Perfectly Clean: I am OBSESSED with this cleanser. I have tried SO many facial cleansers and this is thus far my favorite. This cleanser is very deep cleaning but at the same time gentle. You can use this as a cleanser or apply it as a mask and wait about 3-5 min for it to dry.

4. Clinique Clarifying Lotion: I mentioned on IG that this product and the one below have completely changed my skin. This product is more like a toner and gives you that squeeky clean feeling. I like to use this to make sure I get ALL the make up, dirt, and oil off my face. This is such a great product my husband even uses it.

5. The Ordinary Toning Solution: When I first saw this product I have no real expectations because it was so affordable. I think it is like $8! This Toning Solution hands down will transform your skin. Since adding this to my routine, my skin has never been more clear. I never really struggled with acne per say but texture and dry patches were a major issue for me. I also had a few dark spots form acne scarring and it completely has faded those.  I only use this at night though bc you can’t be exposed to sunlight with this on your skin.

6. Tula Revitalizing Eye Cream: This is SUCH a moisturizing eye cream. I personally think it is too thick for the daytime under my make up. I like this for night time because I can apply it at night and let my skin soak it in while I sleep.

7. Advanced Night Repair: I swear by night repair if my skin ever starts acting weird or if I am experiencing redness or irritation. If you have sensitive skin I recommend trying this. I don’t use this every night but on the nights I do I wait about 30 min or so after using my other products.

Current Skin Care Routine

1. Philosophy Microdelivery Wash: If you are experiencing any texture, uneven skin tone, or dull skin I recommend adding this wash to your routine about 2x a week. This is basically an at home microdermabrasion treatment. It gets rid of the dead skin cells to expose the new skin cells which makes the overall appearence of your skin more bright and even.

2.Vanity Planet Face Cleansing Brush: I like to use this at both morning and night to cleanse my skin even deeper. I just apply whatever face wash I am using. The Vanity Planet brush is a great alternative to the Clarasonic if you are on a budget or don’t care to splurge on it.

They have a few different face cleansing brush options HERE!

3. Eyebrow Razors: I use these to dermaplane my fave every other week. These are perfect for removing the peach fuzz off your face. Doing this helps make your makeup apply SO much better!

I think I have covered everything regard my current skin care. As I said above skin care is an investment and I had to learn the hard way. I would spend SO much money on cheap products and they would never work. Finding a personal skin care regime is definitely trial and error. I hope this post helps!

Thank you for stopping by! XO

Blogging, Lifestyle

Life Update: Baby, Blogging, & Business

I honestly don’t even know how to start today’s post. After a 6 month break from “blogging” this feels so weird blogging again. If you follow my Instagram which I am sure most of you all do, you probably notice that despite my absence in the blogging world ya girl has been working her booty off. I have had quite a few life changes since the last time I posted. I felt it was only appropriate for me to come back to the blogging scene with a life update. Lets just jump right in because I have a feeling this might be a little lengthy.

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Baby

If you didn’t know already, B and I are expecting our first child! It still feels SO weird saying that and I honestly can’t believe we are having a baby. When we found out I was in pure shock. Anyone that knows me knows that having a baby was NOT on my radar for a while. But as the saying goes, when we make plans God laughs. After getting over the initial shock, we are actually SO excited. Our baby is due this spring. We did find out the gender already and we are having a little girl. I can NOT wait to play dress up and have a mini me running around.

Initially I wasn’t going to announce our pregnancy. I wanted it to be super low key and private. To be honest I just didn’t want to put it out there because people are so quick to offer up their opinions and unsolicited advice. I realized it was going to be WAY to hard to keep it private with having so many friends and family members. This is such an exciting time it is hard not to want to share just a little bit.

I received a few questions about if I am going to blog about baby and mom life. At this time that answer is I really don’t know. I believe everyones pregnancy and experience as a mother is different. I don’t personally read mom and baby related blog post so that is just not something I am interested in writing about but as I step into a role as a mother I’m sure things will completely change. I don’t plan on sharing too much of our child on social media, of course i’ll share pics here and there but my content will mainly be about fashion, beauty, and lifestyle.

@alexuslaneia

All outfit details can be found HERE

Blogging

I recently took the longest break for me personally ever from blogging and here’s why. One, I have been EXTREMELY busy working my other two businesses. (I will share more about those in the section below.) Some days I work anywhere from 10-14 hours. I am not complaining one bit. I do not take for granted the opportunity to be my own boss, build from the ground up, and be able to work a flexible schedule.

Another reason I stepped away from the blogging scene is that I got SO tired of the comparison game and the pressure to keep up. I would see bloggers gaining 10K followers like it was nothing, going on elaborate vacations, and spending thousands on clothes each week. I felt like so bad about myself not being able to keep up and felt that there was no way I’d be able to continue and make it in this industry if I wasn’t doing the same. I just needed a break and to regroup. It felt so nice not to have to worry about posting on IG everyday or making sure I posted an IG story to stay relevant. Although the break was nice I have genuinely missed blogging. I have some fun things for 2019 planned and I can’t wait to share. Be sure you are subscribed to the blog & follow me on IG so you don’t miss out!

Ivory James

Business

If you didn’t know, I recently started TWO businesses. I opened my online boutique AND started a virtual assistant/social media marketing agency! I can not believe I just typed that how insane to open not only one but two new ventures at the same time. My VA/Social Media business is something I can share more about at a later time because I am sure you all are more interested in the boutique.

I opened Ivory James Boutique in end of August/early September and it has been THE most exciting and most difficult thing I have ever done. We are building from the ground up, no outside funding, just a girl and a dream! Our launch was successful but building a brand is HARD. Owning your own business is TERRIFYING and SO MUCH WORK. I have learned so much about myself through this process. We are exclusively online at the moment but we hope to have a store front eventually. It is such a work in progress. I plan on doing some post in the future on how I started for everyone asking but before I do that I want to learn more about the business and grow.

If you have supported me or either of my businesses in ANY way, THANK YOU! It means the absolute world to me.

Thank you so much for stopping by! I have missed blogging SO much. I am excited to document and share all of the changes going on in my life and to continue to share my love of fashion and beauty.

P.S. Can we just talk about how fast this year has flown by? Christmas is NEXT WEEK! INSANE!!

Fitness, Lifestyle

Wellness Wednesday: Getting Motivated To Get In Shape + Affordable Athletic Wear

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Outfit: FOREVER 21 | Sneakers: Adidas

Over the last few years staying healthy and in shape has been SUCH a struggle. I went from being SUPER active throughout my childhood and teenage years to college where I wasn’t as active. For the longest time I didn’t even think about going to the gym. Recently I got a fitness coach..I am about a week or so in and it has been SUCH a positive experience. Although she is not physically working out with me she is very encouraging. I have really had to try hard to stay motivated to push through. It has NOT been easy. I know so many of us struggle with actually liking the gym so I wanted to share a few ways I stay motivated to workout. 

1. Cute workout clothes. If you’re reading this you are probably 2 seconds away from exiting from my blog but I promise this helps SO much. We I started my workout plan I got myself a cute new workout outfit, nothing too expensive bc I know i’ll lose weight and wont be able to fit it (or at least that is the goal). I always feel so motivated and actually excited for a workout when I have new clothes to wear. 

2. Set goals and reward yourself once you achieve them. I always set small goals for myself and once I hit those goals I reward myself. For example: one week of healthy eating and recording it all in myfitnesspal = 1 cheat meal. 

3. Get an accountability partner. For me my fitness coach really holds me accountable with the weekly check ins. B (my husband) is also doing the workouts with me so we always keep each other motivated and on track. 

4.Take progress pictures. I didn’t realize how important and useful this was until I started doing it. A healthy lifestyle change is something that takes time. It is sometimes hard to see those changes over a period of time when they aren’t as dramatic BUT a photo will capture those changes you don’t necessarily see from day to day. I suggest taking weekly progress pictures. You would be surprised at how your body changes over a course of time. My fitness coach requires these for our weekly check in and I am SO glad that she does.

So those are my few ways to stay motivated when you are trying to get back in shape. I wanted to touch on my athletic wear for just a moment. Like I said before I am not currently wanting to spend a ton of money on athletic wear because I know my body will be changing. I love being able to find good quality workout pieces that don’t break your bank. Forever21 has been ROCKING the affordable athletic wear game lately. I have purchased SO many items from their athletic line like the set shown above. 

One last thing…these sneakers. They are hands down the most comfortable pair of sneakers I own. I want them in ALL the color ways. They are under $80!!! If you follow me on IG you have seen me rave about these a few times.

Thank you SO much for stopping by and reading today’s post! I hope you all are having a great week so far.  

Fashion, Lifestyle

Coffee Talk: How To Meet New Friends In A New City

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Jacket: Old F21 | Tank: Express (wardrobe essential) | Jeans: Express (currently buy 1 get 1 50% off) | Shoes: Target

HI FRIENDS!! I am so glad to be sharing today’s post! I have decided to start a new series on the blog that a have more “real” post. I know that there is more to life than just fashion and beauty so I wanted to start incorporating more topics into the blog. I decided to call this series “Coffee Talk” because I feel like if we could all get together in real life and meet for coffee these are some of the things we would talk about. 

For the first topic of the series, I wanted to share with you all something I’ve been asked a lot since I’ve moved to a new city. How do you meet new people and make new friends in a new city? 

Moving to a new city is not an easy task and takes lots of determination and faith. One of the hardest things for me was knowing that I’d be leaving all my family and friends. Although I am not far from home its always comforting to know you have a friends close by. 

I was homeschooled for the majority of high school and I’m pretty introverted so making friends hasn’t always been my strong point. Moving to a new city where I knew maybe a handful of people has really pushed me out of my comfort zone. Here are a few tips for meeting new people in a new city.

1. Connect with old friends who are now in the same city. (One day I went to my FB friend list and started searching through my friends list of people who had moved to Nashville as well. I reached out to see if they wanted to grab coffee/lunch and was able to reconnect with some old friends.)

2. Join a small group at church. 

3. Make an effort to get to know coworkers/peers.

4. Check hash tags that fit you niche. For example I am a blogger so I always hashtag #NashvilleBlogger or #NashvilleInfluencer. I have made so many friends via social media. It is always dun to connect with people who have the same interest as you. (Fun Fact: My best friend and I met on social media! LOL!)

5. Join the Sassy Club. If you don’t know what the Sassy Club is, you need to get with the program. One of my favorite bloggers Dani Austin started the Sassy Club. It is a community of women all around the US. We post in the group about different topics and it is overall an uplifting group of ladies. Although it is social media based the group has started doing meet ups all over. It is a great way to meet new girlfriends. 

I know this post is not fashion based but I did want to share this easy to put together look with you all. Most pieces are under $50 and are closet staples that you can re-wear. I have linked all details above. 

I hope you all enjoyed this post and found my ramblings somewhat useful. Do you like these kinds of post? If so, what topics would you like me to talk about.

I hope you all have had a great Monday! 

Fashion, Lifestyle, Summer

Easy All Black Outfit + How to Start Your Week Off Right

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Top: H&M | Jeans:Express | Belt: Gucci (Similar HERE) | Heels:Windsor  (on sale for $15) | Earrings: New York and Company

I love me a good all black outfit, not only are they SUPER easy to pull together but they make you feel so slim. All black outfits are classic and with the a few accessories you can put your own personal touch on them. If I am ever in a hurry, an all black outfit is my go to. I have actually been wearing this outfit like crazy lately. If I need a more relaxed look I just switch my heels for THESE mules. They are gucci dupes and SO affordable. 

You might not have noticed, but today’s post is up just a little later than normal. I had a major Monday morning fail but we are back on track and back to business. 

Monday’s are always a struggle for me. It is SO hard to get back into the groove of things after you have had a few days off. For the longest time I would struggle SO hard to get my life together on Monday’s and honestly it would only set me up to be less productive during the rest of the week. I started implementing a few changes to help prepare me for a new week it has made a huge difference in my productivity and well my sanity. Here are a few tips to help get your week going and how to make Monday feel less like a Monday. 

1. Plan out your week on Sundays. Every Sunday night I sit down with my planner for about 20-30 minutes and start plugging in appointments, meetings, and to-do’s into my calendar. I am old school and keep a paper calendar. I actually have two planners that I use and have finally found a system that works for me. Id be more than happy to share a planning post with you all if you’d like. 

2. Get household chores taken care of during the weekend. When you get home from a busy day, the LAST thing you want to think about is all the chores you need to get done around the house. I like to take early Saturday mornings to get things like laundry, cleaning, and grocery store runs done and over with so I don’t have to deal with it throughout the week.

3. Plan out an outfit or two. I always like to have an outfit or two ready to go in my closet incase I wakeup late or time gets away from me in the mornings. It would be ideal to plan your outfit ahead each night but sometimes that just doesn’t happen. Having an outfit ready to go is so conveinent because all you have to do is grab it and throw it on versus look through your closet for something to wear. 

4. Set alarm 10-15 min earlier. I always try to sleep until the last possible second. This girl loves to sleep. Not giving myself enough time in the mornings was my main issue. I would always underestimate how long it took me to get ready, I would end up leaving behind schedule and ALWAYS ended up late to wherever I was going. I started giving myself plenty of time in the AM and now my mornings don’t feel as rushed. 

Adding these small changes into my routine has been a game changer. I feel like I start my day much more relaxed and my week overall feels so much more organized and productive. 

I hope you all enjoyed today’s post. What are some things that you do to get your week started? How do you stay organized and productive. I’d LOVE to hear from you so feel free to leave a comment below. 

Fashion

Valentines Day Outfit + 10 Date Night Ideas

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Outfit Details

Dress: Sold out Similar HERE | Heels: Target | Earrings: New York and Company (High End version HERE) | Bag: SHEIN | Lip Color: HERE |

Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching. Every year Bryan and I always struggle with what we are going to do to celebrate. I am typically a home-body so B always likes to treat me to a fun date night on Valentine’s day. When I think of sexy and flirty outfits, lace always comes to mind. For the longest time I was NOT a fan of lace, I felt like it was so old school. I then started realizing that lace can be worn effortlessly if it is worn right. When I saw this dress I had to have it. I bought it a couple of months back and knew I would wear it for a date night of some sort. The cutouts that show skin make it so fun and flirty without being too revealing. 

When wearing lace, you don’t have to accessorize much. Just add a fun pair of pumps and statement earrings and you are good to go. These pumps I am wearing are the PERFECT height. They can easily be transitioned from the office to a night out. I scored them from Target for less and $40! I wear them often and they are actually quite comfortable. 

As I said above, I am a home-body. I much rather sit on the couch and binge watch Grey’s with a bottle of wine. Although that sounds like a dream for me, that is NOT Bryan’s “love language”. If you are dating/married and haven’t read THIS book, I highly recommend. He is very big on quality time which is one thing I love about him. We love coming up with fun date night ideas so here are a few we really enjoy.

10 Date Night Ideas

1. Dinner at your favorite restaurant.

2. Go see a movie in theater. (If you haven’t heard of Movie Pass go get it NOW! Unlimited movies for $10 a month!!)

3. Take a sip and paint class.

4. Take a cooking class.

5. Visit your local TopGolf.

6. Go to a concert.

7. Have a game night.

8. Go bowling. (If you are in Nashville you HAVE to check out Pinewood Social.)

9. Cook a meal at home together. 

10. Visit a hot spot in your city. (Nashville has TONS of places to visit and experience.)

Thank you for stopping by an reading today’s post! What are your Valentine’s or Galentine’s day plans.

I also wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for the birthday wishes. You all are the best!!