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My hope is to inspire you to be fearless in the kitchen, to try new things, to take the time to make things the homemade way and most importantly, to have fun doing it!

things i’m loving: may/june edition

1. Starting out this edition of Things I’m Loving, I give you this gingham shirt dress from Boden – possibly the best darn dress that has ever existed. I had my eye on it all spring long and waited impatiently for a coupon code. Finally I purchased the navy blue version and the moment it arrived and I tried it on, I purchased the green version as well. With a bold print and pleated skirt, this definitely had the potential to be all wrong but let me tell you, it’s all kinds of right. It’s well made, well cut, flattering, and eye-catching.  I wore the green version on our anniversary date and, I kid you not, every waitress in the restaurant stopped by the table to compliment it over the course of the evening.  It’s a good thing it was dimly lit because I was blushing something fierce.

2. It’s not news that I adore all things grey (duh – see 2, 5 and 7). I saw these grey skinny jeans from Gap on super sale a couple of months ago while stocking up on summer clothes for the kids and decided to try them out. I have other pairs of grey skinnies but these are my fave. They have a bit of stretch so they are comfortable and flattering.  The grey finish makes them easy to dress up or dress down. I just love ‘em.

3. This Josie Maran whipped argan oil body butter made its way into my Sephora shopping bag many months ago when my skin was insanely dry and itchy from the harsh winter weather. The moment I tried it out, I wanted to write a Thing’s I’m Loving post immediately so I could tell you all about it. Instead, I totally forgot to mention it. But here I am months later, and still very much loving it. Some body butters I have tried in the past left a greasy feeling, but this leaves my skin silky smooth and does an excellent job moisturizing.  I have the sweet citrus scent which I really like – it’s fresh but not overpowering.  One container lasts a long time, and compared to other highly rated moisturizers, this is a pretty great value in my opinion.

4. I’m super picky about sandals, especially gladiator sandals. But these cute strappy things from Target, I can totally get on board with.  They have a similar style to a pair from J.Crew that I have nearly worn to exhaustion, but the price is hard to beat. I have these in both the neutral (grayish/gold) and the mint green (shown here). These have been a summer staple thus far. I wear them all the time!

5. I love a good D’Orsay heel and these grey suede heels from Sole Society are totally fantastic. The cut is elegant and the grey is perfect – it’s a nice pale neutral that goes with practically everything.  The heel height is moderate so they are still comfortable for all day wear at work or a night out. They look good with jeans and dresses (including that Boden dress above).  They do run a little big so if you get them, consider sizing a half size down.  Also, they restock sizes so if your size is gone, keep an eye out – they may come back eventually.  (New to Sole Society? Email me at annieseats at gmail dot com and I can send you an invite.)

6. This isn’t the first time I’ve mentioned the Sugar Lip Treatment from Fresh. I just can’t help myself! When Josie, Tara and I were visiting NYC recently, we got caught in a flash rainstorm and ducked into a Fresh store to wait it out. Not a bad place to be stuck, if you ask me.  Since we had time to kill, I decided to try on every color of the Sugar Lip Treatment. I liked a lot of them, but this Berry shade is my favorite of all. It’s a nice bold color that makes a bit of a statement while still looking somewhat natural, and it doesn’t make me feel like I have clown make up on.  I think this works especially well with my coloring (fair with pink undertones).  (I also still love my Rosé shade and wear it when I’m going for something a more understated touch of color.)

7. Guys, I feel so grown up. I have successfully incorporated a blazer into my wardrobe. (This doesn’t make me like Lisa from Saved by the Bell, does it?)  I’ve wanted a blazer for ages, but something always held me back. Ridiculous prices.  Statement prints that don’t go with much. Unflattering cuts.  All of the above.  While wandering through the Target clothing department, I came across this awesome blazer.  Since it was a blazer and the price was so good, I was wary.  It seemed too good to be true.  But I tried it on during each of the next eight or so Target trips and finally decided to go for it. Turns out, it’s awesome.  I like to wear it with all black underneath and a bright colored heel, but thanks to the understated neutral stripes, you could make this work with lots of outfits.

I suppose it makes total sense that since I love both fashion and knitting so much, I really enjoy being able to knit myself items I actually want to wear. I bought the yarn for this lace top a year ago and finally got around to starting this project.  It’s a great summer sweater and was a fun knit overall.  I may make another in a different color at some point. It’s just a nice versatile item to have in my wardrobe.  (Link to the pattern here.)

I know I’m late to the game with this book Wild by Cheryl Strayed, but I’m not generally up on the most current, popular books. I have a very long list to read and tend to choose the next book at random.  This book I literally chose by scrolling through my Goodreads list and blindly placing my finger on a title.  Little did I know, this book would speak to me so deeply.  If you aren’t familiar, the basic premise of Wild is that the author experiences a devastating loss in the death of her mother.  She is shaken and lost in the aftermath, and decides somewhat on a whim to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. The story chronicles her time on the trail and the many obstacles she encounters.  Though I won’t be dropping everything to hike in isolation any time soon, reading about her grief over her mother’s death was as though someone had come into my mind, taken my own thoughts on the loss of my parents and laid them out for all to see. (Especially about my father’s death, because it was so sudden and unexpected.)  I found myself highlighting passage after passage and just marveling at all of the common feelings of grief that we shared.  Ultimately, the story is interesting and inspirational, and was a very quick read for me. Have you read Wild? What did you think?

On a lighter note (I guess), have you seen Maleficent yet?  I don’t see many movies in the theatre so it’s always a treat when I can.  Recently a girlfriend and I met up to see Maleficent.  My expectations were a little uncertain – it totally could have gone either way, but I LOVED it. The setting, the animation and many of the opening scenes reminded me a lot of Lord of the Rings, but I loved seeing the Sleeping Beauty story from the supposed villain’s perspective. I don’t fancy myself a movie critic by any stretch, but I thought this was a really enjoyable summer movie and I think Ben and I may go try to see it again soon.

Lastly, a funny for fellow Friends lovers. If Ross had Instagram…totally awesome.  Also awesome – If Joey had Instagram. You’re welcome.

Disclaimer:  These posts are a way for me to share the things I love with you, simply because I love them!  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission. This helps to offset the costs of running this site and allows me to continue providing you the content you enjoy.

  • Kerry Cooks

    That gingham dress is so beautiful Annie! And I love the way your hair is swept up in the picture of the knitted top, could you possibly share how you did it in a future post?

  • Angela

    Yay! These posts are my favorite. (Not that I don’t love your recipes. I recommend this site to all my friends and I am slowly baking my way through all the treats. :) ) At any rate, these are great. That lip treatment is amazing. My book group chose Wild this autumn past and I loved it. If I didn’t have four kids, I would have been sorely tempted to hike the PCT. I’d read Tiny Beautiful Things, which I highly recommend, so I was immediately hooked on Wild.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Angela

    Yay! These posts are my favorite. (Not that I don’t love your recipes. I recommend this site to all my friends and I am slowly baking my way through all the treats. :) ) At any rate, these are great. That lip treatment is amazing. My book group chose Wild this autumn past and I loved it. If I didn’t have four kids, I would have been sorely tempted to hike the PCT. I’d read Tiny Beautiful Things, which I highly recommend, so I was immediately hooked on Wild.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • annieseats

    Thank you Angela! I have so much fun writing these, so I’m happy to hear you enjoy them so much :) I’ll have to read Tiny Beautiful Things eventually.

  • annieseats

    Thank you Angela! I have so much fun writing these, so I’m happy to hear you enjoy them so much :) I’ll have to read Tiny Beautiful Things eventually.

  • annieseats

    Maybe I should. I wear my hair this way a lot and people are always asking me about it. I got the idea from Pinterest years ago but I have searched high and low and can’t find the post for it!

  • annieseats

    Maybe I should. I wear my hair this way a lot and people are always asking me about it. I got the idea from Pinterest years ago but I have searched high and low and can’t find the post for it!

  • Melissa Brooker

    I also LOVED Maleficent! it is totally worth going to see! I’m always on the lookout for good books, so maybe Wild will be next on my list!

  • Emily @ Life on Food

    I love the target sandals. I am trying to get my husband to see Maleficent. Typically he is all about Disney movies but he heard it was scary and now is on sure. He isn’t big on the scare factor.

  • Karen

    I get so excited when I see one of these posts on your blog. I just bought my second tube of Fresh Sugar lip treatment a few days ago, after having bought the first one based on your recommendation a while back. I never thought I would spend that on lip balm, but I loved the first one so much, I was sad when I used it all. It was plum and didn’t have much tint, but this time I bought the berry also. Maybe I’ll have to try the rose next time! And I’m so impressed by your knitting! I always mess up on lace because I can’t concentrate enough to remember where I am in the pattern. :)

  • Karen

    I get so excited when I see one of these posts on your blog. I just bought my second tube of Fresh Sugar lip treatment a few days ago, after having bought the first one based on your recommendation a while back. I never thought I would spend that on lip balm, but I loved the first one so much, I was sad when I used it all. It was plum and didn’t have much tint, but this time I bought the berry also. Maybe I’ll have to try the rose next time! And I’m so impressed by your knitting! I always mess up on lace because I can’t concentrate enough to remember where I am in the pattern. :)

  • Elena

    Love, love these posts. I always find some inspiration and love to get a peek into your life, Annie.

  • Elena

    Love, love these posts. I always find some inspiration and love to get a peek into your life, Annie.

  • Nicole Lodahl

    I agree with Angela – I love these posts + the recipe posts too!!
    I have made a couple purchases (Boden slippers, Sugar) + knit projects (leg warmers) based on these posts. This time I requested Wild from the library and will probably end up with those sandals. Thank you!! :)

  • Nicole Lodahl

    I agree with Angela – I love these posts + the recipe posts too!!
    I have made a couple purchases (Boden slippers, Sugar) + knit projects (leg warmers) based on these posts. This time I requested Wild from the library and will probably end up with those sandals. Thank you!! :)

  • annieseats

    Thanks Nicole! I love to hear that you enjoy them so much :)

  • annieseats

    Thanks Elena!

  • annieseats

    Thanks Nicole! I love to hear that you enjoy them so much :)

  • annieseats

    Thanks Elena!

  • annieseats

    Thanks Karen! So glad you enjoy these posts. Believe me, I always make a mistake or two with lace projects (and definitely made a couple in this shirt) but this one was pretty forgiving and even I can’t tell where the mistakes are. Such a relief because when I know I’ve made them, I usually end up fixating on them.

  • annieseats

    Thanks Karen! So glad you enjoy these posts. Believe me, I always make a mistake or two with lace projects (and definitely made a couple in this shirt) but this one was pretty forgiving and even I can’t tell where the mistakes are. Such a relief because when I know I’ve made them, I usually end up fixating on them.

  • Amanda Ferraioli

    I second the hair comment! I’d love to know how to do that cute updo!

  • Lydia B

    I’m totally with you on the Target sandals. I bought them in two colors as well about 6 weeks ago using my larger pregnancy feet as an excuse for getting both plus another pair in a different style. Two or three of my friends have bought the same style since! Love your sweater–you could wear it under a blazer!

  • Lydia B

    I’m totally with you on the Target sandals. I bought them in two colors as well about 6 weeks ago using my larger pregnancy feet as an excuse for getting both plus another pair in a different style. Two or three of my friends have bought the same style since! Love your sweater–you could wear it under a blazer!

  • Melissa Brooker

    I love these posts!! Maleficent was an amazing movie, i totally agree! and I’m always on the lookout for new books to read, so perhaps wild will be next on my list! BTW the fact that you actually knitted yourself a shirt is amazing! i would end up with a mess that no one could wear haha!

  • Melissa Brooker

    I love these posts!! Maleficent was an amazing movie, i totally agree! and I’m always on the lookout for new books to read, so perhaps wild will be next on my list! BTW the fact that you actually knitted yourself a shirt is amazing! i would end up with a mess that no one could wear haha!

  • theniftyfoodie

    I was totally eyeing those same sandals at Target the other day! They’re so cute!

  • Stephanie

    You are incredible! Always such an inspiration :) LOVE your hairstyle.

  • SK

    Oh my, could you make me a crochet sweater too? I love everything crochet, yet I don’t know how to :-( and unfortunately a day only has 24 houses for the gazillion hobbies I have or would like to have! Loved the Ross and Joey instagrams, thank you.

  • Dawn

    Yes, you should!!! (I was going to ask for the same thing. :) ) I also adore these posts. You have lovely taste, Annie!

  • anita

    You probably already know this, but one of my other favorite bloggers has the same taste in Boden dresses: http://www.designmom.com/2014/06/a-few-things-215/ !!

  • Michelle Voss

    Oh my Annie you kill me with everything you do well! I love the knit sweater it’s beautiful.

  • Angela Wilhite

    Oh! That sweater is lovely!! I love when your blog combines cooking and knitting — two of my favorite things. :)

  • Angela Wilhite

    Oh! That sweater is lovely!! I love when your blog combines cooking and knitting — two of my favorite things. :)

  • annieseats

    Thank you! I love it too – two of my favorite things as well (obviously :)

  • annieseats

    Thank you! I love it too – two of my favorite things as well (obviously :)

  • Liz N.

    Annie, I couldn’t put the book, Wild, down. I’ve been completely immersed in it. There were parts in that book that I could relate to and, like you, I underlined/highlighted passages that will resonate with me for a long time. I can’t wait for the motion picture to out. I Googled it and saw that Reece Witherspoon will portray Cheryl and I think she’ll be a great fit for the role. It comes out later this year, I believe. I think I’ll need to bring some tissues to the theater!

  • Liz N.

    Annie, I couldn’t put the book, Wild, down. I’ve been completely immersed in it. There were parts in that book that I could relate to and, like you, I underlined/highlighted passages that will resonate with me for a long time. I can’t wait for the motion picture to out. I Googled it and saw that Reece Witherspoon will portray Cheryl and I think she’ll be a great fit for the role. It comes out later this year, I believe. I think I’ll need to bring some tissues to the theater!

  • Sarah Townsend

    Your sweater is so pretty, I’m so impressed by your knitting skills!

    And Berry is my favorite of the Fresh balms as well, I keep both it and Rose with me most of the time, they’re so comfortable to put on and refreshing.

  • Sarah Townsend

    Your sweater is so pretty, I’m so impressed by your knitting skills!

    And Berry is my favorite of the Fresh balms as well, I keep both it and Rose with me most of the time, they’re so comfortable to put on and refreshing.

  • annieseats

    Thank you!

  • annieseats

    Thank you!

  • Emily Torgerson

    Love the Boden dress! How’s the sizing? I’m usually a four in dresses, but I love the green color and they only have 6 left, would that work? I am taller, thanks!

  • Emily Torgerson

    Love the Boden dress! How’s the sizing? I’m usually a four in dresses, but I love the green color and they only have 6 left, would that work? I am taller, thanks!

  • annieseats

    I think the 6 would be fine. I went up a size and I think that was a good call.

  • annieseats

    I think the 6 would be fine. I went up a size and I think that was a good call.

  • Emily Torgerson

    In the last hour the green disappeared, so I’m going for the blue. Both are super cute!

  • Emily Torgerson

    In the last hour the green disappeared, so I’m going for the blue. Both are super cute!

  • annieseats

    Gah! If you really love the green, possibly try emailing customer service and having them put you on a wait list in case one is returned. I haven’t tried this with Boden (yet), but I’ve done it with other stores like J.Crew and Anthro and it has worked every time.

  • annieseats

    Gah! If you really love the green, possibly try emailing customer service and having them put you on a wait list in case one is returned. I haven’t tried this with Boden (yet), but I’ve done it with other stores like J.Crew and Anthro and it has worked every time.

  • gailwerner

    Okay, three things: 1) THAT GINGHAM DRESS (total sucker for gingham, right here…) 2) I LOVEE blazers! Like, a third of my wardrobe is blazers! You can never go wrong with one and 3) ROSS HAS AN INSTAGRAM?!! You need to text me these things from now on, alright? I’m DYING over it over here!

  • gailwerner

    Okay, three things: 1) THAT GINGHAM DRESS (total sucker for gingham, right here…) 2) I LOVEE blazers! Like, a third of my wardrobe is blazers! You can never go wrong with one and 3) ROSS HAS AN INSTAGRAM?!! You need to text me these things from now on, alright? I’m DYING over it over here!

  • annieseats

    1. The gingham dress of course made me think of you – knew you’d love it! It has probably been one of my all time best wardrobe purchases.
    2. I know, you always rock blazers and were my main inspiration in taking the plunge. I actually just got a new blazer from Loft – it’s a white linen crop number, and I love it. Wearing right now, actually!
    3. Why didn’t I text you about this?! Next time, I promise. All important Friends funnies go immediately to Gail :)

  • annieseats

    1. The gingham dress of course made me think of you – knew you’d love it! It has probably been one of my all time best wardrobe purchases.
    2. I know, you always rock blazers and were my main inspiration in taking the plunge. I actually just got a new blazer from Loft – it’s a white linen crop number, and I love it. Wearing right now, actually!
    3. Why didn’t I text you about this?! Next time, I promise. All important Friends funnies go immediately to Gail :)

  • annieseats

    Yay! That’s awesome. I wear mine almost daily. And please don’t even talk about winter yet. I’m SO not ready for that!