Weekend at the Beach

This weekend, Matt and I have been lucky enough to have been invited to our friends lovely home in the Hamptons. I am looking forward to relaxing around their pool, soaking up a little sun (emphasis on the little) at the beach and getting in some quality time with their adorable 4 month old son. It is certainly going to be a different Hamptons experience than the one Kinsella showed us but that doesn’t mean that I am not SUPER excited!

Tonight Matt and I are packing for the weekend. Here are my top 5 things you should bring when you go to the Hamptons for a weekend of summer fun.

1. Sunscreen

After years of burning, I’ve come to realize that I am not someone who tans. It is the harsh truth. Took me 29 years to realize it, but I have finally accepted it. As a result, I’ve become somewhat of an expert on sunscreen. I’ve tested multiple brands and Neutrogena is far and away my favorite – particularly the Ultra Sheer, Dry-Touch style. This is a must have for everyone who wants to prevent skin cancer and wrinkles!

2. Sunglasses

Almost as important as protecting you skin, is protecting your eyes. Ideally you should look for a pair of sunnies that block 100 percent of UV rays and that also absorb most HEV rays. Unfortunately if you are like me and notorious for loosing your sunglasses it might be hard to justify the expensive price of Ray Bans. Thankfully, you can buy knock offs on the streets of NYC (and in most Target stores) for $5 a pair. Sadly, they probably don’t have the UV ray protection you need. Another place worth checking out is newcomer Warby Parker, who are quickly becoming known for the on trend frames and philanthropic model.

3. Maxi Dress

A maxi dress is a great option for dinners out when the temperature might drop, the AC might be blasting or to cover a sunburned leg! Dress them up with heels or go casual with a fun summer flat or classic style like Jack Rogers. Plus with the right material, this is a piece that can be added to your weekend tote without the worry of wrinkles.

4. Beach Tote

Make sure you bring a purse or tote that is big enough to carry everything you need to the beach and is water/sand friendly. I’ve made the mistake of just bringing a regular purse on beach trips and then not having anyway to bring my towel, sunscreen, book, etc to the beach. A nautical themed tote is a nice touch for a seaside town.

5. A Gift for the Hostess

If you are lucky enough to be invited to a friend’s home like we are, make sure you don’t show up empty-handed. Gifts don’t have to be expensive but gifts that take either your, or the host’s interests into consideration go a long way. Bring your favorite game, a jar of homemade cookies or the makings of their favorite brunch cocktail.

Endorsed by the Little Things

Whenever Oprah touches something it turns to gold. If your book makes it into her “book club” you are an instant best seller.

(via)

If Oprah features your product during her “favorite things” holiday episode, it is be flying off the shelves the next day.

And if Oprah thinks you are talented -soon you will be performing in Madison Square Garden with a super star.

And eventually on Glee.

Unfortunately, an endorsement here doesn’t come with such incredible outcomes. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth something.

 Already, I have endorsed quite a few pro ducts and services on this blog:

Stitch Fix – a personal shopping service that is both fun and convenient

Pinterest – the most inspiring site on the web, hands down

Container Store – the best place to buy orgnaization supplies

Erin Condren – the best place to buy labels for your organizational supplies

Etsy – essentially, an online craft fair

Well today I have another thing to add to the list: SOAP.com

Living in New York City isn’t always as glamorous as it appears on Sex and the City. It is expensive. It is dirty. It is loud. And doing simple things like going grocery shopping or running errands is hard.

Very few people have cars. The closest Wal-Mart is over 10 miles away in New Jersey. And at the local Duane Reade, a 6 pack of toilet paper costs $12.99. And because I could only carry a few things at a time, my trips to the pharmacy for paper towels, Cascade, Tide and shampoo were frequent: 4-5 times  week. And then I discovered SOAP.com and my life changed.

With over 25,000 products under one virtual roof, they do the dirty work for you. From personal products like shampoo and makeup to household necessities they’ve got you covered. And they have great prices too! So instead of paying 12.99 for 6 rolls of toilet paper, I am now only paying $6.99! And here’s the best part: they deliver everything to your door within 2 business days for free! 

Now some people might not see the value of this service. Let me tell you – these people don’t live in New York City. And if they do, they are one of the lucky few who have access to a car.

So if driving to your local Wal-Mart or Target isn’t an option, I strongly encourage you to place an order at SOAP.com – You won’t regret it!

Now if only they could figure out a way to actually clean your apartment for you…

Stitch Fix

I recently learned about a new online site called Stitch Fix from my friend during my recent D.C. visit. Immediately, I was intrigued and gave it a try.

Stitch Fix is a personalized shopping service – all of which can be done from the comfort of your own keyboard. How’s how it works:

1. Request an account here – they are still in their Beta phase, so please be patient. They will reach out to you when they are ready for you.

2. After you receive your log in, fill out your style survey – indicating what style you are currently rocking, what style you really want to capture but don’t know how to pull off,  your pricing comfort zone for various articles of clothing and prefered color schemes.

3. Schedule your fix (i.e. monthly, 4 times a year, etc)

4. Receive your fix in the mail (Stitch Fix clients enjoy free shipping both ways as a benefit of membership!)

5. Be giddy as you open it and try on all the lovely designer brand clothing.

6. Decide what you want to keep and what you want to return.

7. Place any “I didn’t love it” items in the pre-paid USPS envelope and drop it off at the nearest mailbox.

8. Continue to build your style profile by providing feedback about the items online.

9. Wear your newest fashions around town and rave about your new personal styling service.

10. Repeat as often as possible.

The cost of this service in $20 dollars per fix; however, that fee is applied as a credit toward the purchase of anything in your Fix. So if you buy at least once thing over $20, you are essentially getting the styling service for free.

I am happy to report that I received my first fix last week and it was awesome. I tore open the package and tried on everything at once. While I only kept one of the five items I received, I was impressed with their selections. The stylist definitely got it right and if I had been more accurate with my sizing information, I probably would have kept a lot more! The top that I decided to keep was something I would NEVER buy myself, but something that I absolutely loved. I can’t wait to wear it. I honestly feel like I had Rachel Zoe right here in my apartment with me- only without the attitude and judgement at the fact that I am not a size 00 like her post-baby self.

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So jump on the Stitch Fix bandwagon. I promise you – you won’t regret it.