It’s That Time of the Year…

Who loves the fair??? I do, I do!! It’s a beautiful time of the year to embrace all things Iowa: agriculture, crafts, fried food and short shorts (ok, maybe that’s not all Iowa specific, but it’s all fantastic nonetheless.) John and I always make a beeline for the fried veggie stand- it’s our absolute favorite! Fried pickles are never better than from this veggie stand, not to mention fried mushrooms, cauliflower and cheese curds. Cheese is a vegetable, right? We also picked up some gigantic tenderloins along the way and proceeded to stuff our faces full of food. It was amazing!!

Other highlights included John’s personalized screen printed unicorn t-shirt (another fair tradition of ours), me coaching Marlena through our ski lift ride, admiring all the super cute goats, and the matching, engraved unicorn necklaces John and I treated ourselves too. Unfortunately I was too stuffed to indulge in a deep fried cupcake (so sad!) but there’s always next year, right?









I love to go to the fair in style and pulled out my own favorite pair of short shorts for the occasion. A great thing about the Iowa State Fair: you can pretty much get away with wearing anything. Nothing says country to me better than gingham print and ruffles and wouldn’t you know, I just happened to have that perfect combo! Also spending a day at the fair calls for the purrrrfect pair of walking shoes, so I pulled out my trusty Worishofer’s, which never do me wrong. And finally, topping everything off with animal accessories, I think I fit in beautifully!

Outfit details: top :: thrifted | shorts :: Urban Outfitters | shoes :: Worishofer,| belt :: H&M | earrings :: gift | ring :: I-35 truck stop| purse :: Urban Outfitters


Our First Family Vacation

Hi kitties!

So I’m pretty excited about this outfit, solely because Joe took these pictures when we were on vacation in South Dakota. We were gone 10 days on a giant road trip from Des Moines to Denver to South Dakota back to Des Moines. With Charlie turning 2 in October, we definitely learned some tricks very quickly. Like: reserve a crib before you get to the hotel, never drive more than 5 hours a day, and always have snacks on hand. And I have to say that despite his requests for “nummies” every 6 minutes in the car, he was such a great little trooper the entire trip!

On this particular day we hit Bear Country USA (bears, mountain lions, wolves! Walking around your cars!), Mt. Rushmore (Presidents! In rocks!), the Presidential Wax Museum (Waxy figures! Ok, I’ll stop), the Cosmos, and this old Dinosaur Park from the 50s. It was definitely one of my favorite days of our entire trip.








I don’t match us on purpose, I promise. It just happens all. the. time.

I packed easy dresses to wear for the trip, the same 2 pairs of comfy flats, and a bunch of accessories. I couldn’t have been happier. Sometimes when I am gone for a long stay somewhere I stare at my suitcase and hate everything in it. This time was the direct opposite!

I couldn’t resist adding a few fun ones that Joe took of me and Charlie. First family vacation = total success!

Outfit details :: sunnies :: Forever 21 | dress :: thrifted | red bow belt :: thrifted | flats :: birthday gift from my mom, H&M


Jessi’s Bridal shower

Part two of the best weekend ever consisted of an all ladies, super brunch buffet, complete with a mimosa bar and otherwise known as my awesome bridal shower!
Brunch is, 100%, one of my favorite things about any weekend. And a brunch buffet is basically heaven. Two kinds of Quiche, Mac and cheese, Brie bites, crab rangoon, coffee (with coffee ice cubes!), blueberry muffins, cheesecake and more!! My bridesmaids worked their asses off to prepare this feast and I couldn’t have been more blown away!
It seemed very indulgent to have a whole weekend dedicated me and my upcoming wedding, but this only happens once, so I embraced the good times and enjoyed every moment! It was so nice to talk with all the ladies, eat delicious, delicious food and, I have to say, it was pretty fun to get some wedding presents!!

This white dress was a gift from my mom and my brother’s girlfriend, and I absolutely love it! It fits me perfectly and isn’t like anything else I already own. I don’t wear a lot of white, but I figure I might as well live it up as the bride and embrace some white in my wardrobe. I love this dress because it’s a little more ivory and not bright white.







While I absolutely love these shoes, they are TOTAL killers! My poor feet can’t stand them for much more than a few hours, but it’s still worth it to break them out every now and then. One of my bridesmaids, Shannon, gave me this inflatable cupcake, which is too cute. The perfect prop! And the tattoo on the back of my neck is a remnant from the bachelorette party two days prior.

All in all it was such an amazing weekend (have I mentioned that yet?) The biggest shout-outs ever go to Marlena and Mindy for meticulously planning and putting together the best shower a girl could ask for. And I can’t believe we still have a whole wedding to look forward to! Yay!!

Outfit details: dress :: gift | shoes :: Urban Outfitters (similar) | necklace, rings :: Forever21


Ladies Weekend

Hey there pretty kitties, want to know something I’ve discovered about getting married??? For one, you get to be with the one you love for the rest of your life and throw a huge party (duh!) But two, it’s an excellent reason to get to spend lots of quality time with all the other totally awesome people in your life, celebrating not only the relationship you have with your betrothed, but the great relationships you have with your best friends and family. Sorry to sound cheesy and sentimental! But I have some of the greatest friends on the planet who threw me pretty much the best bachelorette party and bridal shower weekend a girl could ever hope for. It was incredible (and we have the blurry pictures to prove it)!!!

I don’t think anyone would ever say I’m a traditional girl, and my bridesmaids took that to heart. I was not forced to wear a sash or veil, there was no penis paraphernalia and no embarrassing scavenger hunt. Those things are all good and fine for some, but just not my cup of tea. There was, however, a limo (an absolute MUST, I say!) a hotel room, Cards Against Humanity, great dinner, great friends, great speeches, and many, many, many drinks!

Highlights of the night included (but are not limited to):
– a rapid-fire questionnaire, stolen from our favorite podcast Totally Laime (shout out!) and personalized by my lovely maid of honor, Miss Marlena
– riding in the limo, drinking champagne and cranberry cocktails and singing along to some awesome jams
– answering many questions wrong on the Newlywed Game questionnaire filled out by my honey
– bar hopping around to some of my favorite bars, and running into my husby-to-be at the end of the night
– getting to hang out and love on all the awesome ladies in my life, both local and from far away (minus one beautiful bridesmaid, who couldn’t make it. We missed her dearly!)
– and lastly, passing out in the hotel from too much fun at the end of the night while everyone else partied on….


The limo arrived and it was a beast! But it had to be to fit all those girls. This picture is post-hotel drinks, pre-dinner. And, I have to say, there’s not one, not two, but three Jesse/Jessi’s here. Outstanding!
There’s also a Mindy, Marlena and Shannon there, and I love them all the same, even though we don’t share a name 🙂


Me with some of my oldest and dearest friends, also 3 of my four bridesmaids. What beauties!


I took the liberty of appropriately labeling my own cup. | Once the gift bags came out we didn’t put the party favors away all night!


Near the end of the night we thought it appropriate to take selfies in the bathroom. Makes sense, right? | This limo was intense, as evidenced by the lightning screen in the background.


Shannon making it rain with her mountains of cash! | I told you we didn’t put the party favors away all night. They made perfect unicorn horns!

I really have the best bridesmaids, am I right???

Stay tuned for details on the bridal shower that blew my mind, coming up later this week.


DIY: Cat Straws and Toothpicks!

So for Jessi’s bachelorette party, I decided to whip up these fun cat straws for a fun addition to our champagne limo ride.

These were fairly easy once I worked out the kinks. Let’s get to it!



Paper straws (I bought these cute striped straws from Target. They are cute on their own! And they were $2)
A few pieces of card stock
A pencil
Metallic sharpie or some other marker you like
Circle punch
Hot glue or strong glue



1. With your pencil, start by drawing a cat head shape on the backside of the card stock. You may want to try it out on a regular piece of paper first.

2. Once I drew my perfect shape, I cut out the cat head and used it as a template for the rest of them. Cut those cuties out!

3. Make little kitty faces using the sharpie.

3. Using the circle punch, cut out as many circles as you did cat heads.

4. Now glue just half of that tiny circle to the back of the cat head.

5. Put the straw under the circle. Now dot the other side of the circle and glue it down. I didn’t do it very tightly so I could adjust where the kitty was on the straw.

You’re all done! I will say that since they were adjustable, some girls at the party mentioned they were going to take the kitty with them and use them on different straws. The paper straws were cute, but they weren’t exactly long-lasting!


Me, Jess, Jessi, and Mindy…. all ready with our straws… but where are our drinks?!

While you’re at it . . . make some smaller and glue them onto toothpicks! I also found some glittery hearts at Micheal’s that I added.


There’s just something about toothpicks with things on top that make everything more festive! Here are our dessert blueberry muffins decked out at Jessi’s bridal shower:


Check back soon for more details on the amazing weekend we had!


Matchy-Matchy Swamp Thing

These pics turned out fine, but let me tell you: taking pics next to a flooded river smells wretched. Wretched I tell you! Good thing you can’t smell through the screen. Yikes.

Anyway, I decided to be matchy on this particular day. I was looking for the perfect flats to wear and look: black and orange! Why not? This racerback tank is actually a dress, and this skirt used to be a dress! A full-length, long-sleeved dress, to be exact. Picture that! I love bows and all, but it was just too much. I cut off the top right over the elastic waist and shortened the skirt and now it’s a staple of mine.







I just realized that Jessi gave me these flats and this belt! Thanks girl!

Summer has been absolutely heavenly so far. As Jessi mentioned, we’ve celebrating all things Jessi this weekend with her bachelorette party and bridal shower and it’s been so fun! And don’t forget to tune in next week for our outfits along with a fun (and super easy (as always!)) DIY. And yes, it’s cat related!

Outfit details: Sunnies :: Target | Heart necklace :: Forever 21 | Bow Earrings: Charlotte Russe | Orange triangles dress :: Forever 21 | Bow skirt :: thrifted | Belt and flats: gifts



One thing I’ve noticed about myself since starting this blog: I love my outfit staples! This summer I can’t get enough of these high-waisted shorts, as evidenced by past outfit posts to this very blog. What can I say, they are so comfy and cute and easy to pair with nearly anything. They are my dream pair of shorts and are great for summer and will transition easily into fall by pairing them with tights! (That is, if I don’t wear them out before then…)
Fashion-wise, this time of the year is tricky, because, as you may have noticed, fall clothes and boots have started to pop up in stores and I’m already getting excited to wear tights and boots. It can be hard to live in the moment! Right around the corner we’ll see the release of all the fall fashion magazines, which is really my favorite time of the year. Exciting!!






I picked up these shoes at a department store earlier this year. Department store shopping is super rare for me, but when I saw these beauties on display they were calling my name and I couldn’t say no to them! It’s taken me a little while to fully break them in, but they’re getting there and I can tell we’ll be together for a long time. Ahhhh, new love!

I’m so excited for this upcoming weekend. My amazing maid of honor Marlena (duh) and two other equally amazing bridesmaids, Mindy and Shannon, are throwing my bachelorette party and bridal shower and I can’t wait!!!!! The bridal shower is cat themed (another duh). I’m not 100% sure what they have in store for the bachelorette party, but I have no doubt it will be awesome!! Stay tuned throughout next week for pics and details about our crazy weekend!

outfit details: top, necklace, sunnies :: forever21 | shorts :: Urban Outfitters | shoes :: bcbg | bow :: Vitae


Favorites: Strapless Dresses

Hi Pretty Kitties! Marlena here. So back when Jessi and I were in college, we didn’t have the refreshing luxury of air conditioning. I remember one summer when Jessi was living in Iowa City, our roommate Mindy and I spent our super hot August days either sitting in our weird, dingy basement with a 30 pack of high life or going to the movies where it’s always cold, no matter the season. During those sweaty times it’s also nice to wear as little clothing as possible, and that’s where the strapless dress comes parading in! Jessi and I have rounded up some lovely little numbers just for you. Stay cool out there!


1. Mint! Enough said.
Mint Cute Dress :: Modcloth

2. The cut and pattern are to die for!
Sparkle & Fade Lattice Waist Strapless Dress :: Urban Outfitters

3. This is part of their Archival Collection. So glad they brought it back!
Striped Dress :: Anthropologie

4. You know we can’t resist bows.
Cute the Breeze Strapless Dress :: Lulu’s

5. Perfect for the classy broad.
Backstage Jitters Dress :: Modcloth

6. Those buttons! That fun color! We’re in.
First Classy Dress :: Modcloth

7. Loving the subtle triangle pattern. So dainty!
Stained Glass Strapless Dress :: Urban Outfitters

8. This color blocking is the purrrrfect way to round out the end of summer.
Striped Strapless Flare Dress :: Loft

9. Super cute and custom made for you!
Polka dot strapless dress :: Bourgebride via Etsy

10. Love this pattern!
Summer in Barlette Maxi Dress :: Ruche