LC’s Summer Fashion Tips

22 Jul

This post is brought to you by the letter K and the wonderful people at Kohl’s.

If you don’t subscribe to Lauren Conrad’s website – and really, what are you doing here when you could be reading her stuff, I’m kind of judging you – you may have missed her July style tips. But never fear, I’ve distilled them down to a few of my favorites, and I’m also going to show you how to put them into play with pieces from the LC Lauren Conrad collection at Kohl’s.

1. Go gingham.

Gingham just seems to say “summer”. I would leave this shirt open over a white cami, cuff the sleeves, and pair it with crisp white denim and boat shoes.

2. Hot tropics.

Fun, beachy prints are in this summer, and it doesn’t get much beachier than this whimsical sailboat skirt. Pick up on the navy in this print and go darker with a fitted tee. Or, if you’re feeling bold, pair it with a bright coral tank or tee.

3. Channel east coast prep.

East coast prep is so not a problem for me. It’s hard for me to not channel east coast prep. If you want to add some east coast flair to your style this summer, pair this darling dress with some dainty flat sandals and you’ll be ready for croquet on Martha’s Vineyard.

4. Get all dolled up.

LC suggests looking for dresses with cutouts so you can show off your summer tan. I don’t have a summer tan, but I still love this fun and flirty dress. With a black kitten heel, you’ll be ready for a chic summer soiree.

5. Be breezy.

I mean really, does it get any breezier than this floral maxi dress? Slip into this casual chic number with some flip flops to enjoy drinks and a bonfire after a day at the beach, and enjoy feeling the ocean breezes ruffle your ruffles.

6. Nautical or nice.

I adore this little dress! You can dress it up with pearls and heels for a dinner party, or dress it down with flip flops and a pony tail for running errands. The stripes are classic and universally flattering – this is the dress you’ll want to live in for the rest of the summer.

Befuddled Baby

11 Jul

I was looking through old pictures last week to put together a collage for my brother’s birthday, and I found some rather adorable pictures of baby Annie. I noticed that there seemed to be a common thread in most of my baby pictures. If you ask my father, he’ll tell you that I spent the first few months (if not years) of my life looking perpetually befuddled. I think it’s a sign of high intelligence, that even as an infant I was struggling to understand the world around me. Or maybe I was just a dumb child. Or maybe, just maybe, I was amazed that I had landed on this planet to be surrounded by crazy people.

You see, when I was a wee baby, we didn’t have Pinterest. There was no repository of adorable and twee ideas to celebrate the holidays with your new offspring. And so we ended up with things like this:

Really, Mom? A turban with a paper heart doily? No wonder I was so confused as a baby. We were a white family in New Jersey, and I was wearing a turban. Sure, Elizabeth Taylor can pull off that look, but I don’t know if I had the same success.

And then, of course, there was the challenger to my throne.

So he’s just going to scream all the time? And I’m supposed to find that adorable? I don’t think so. ALL ATTENTION ON ME, PLEASE.

I mean, if you really think about it, there’s no reason babies shouldn’t be befuddled. Welcome to crazy town, babies, after a while it starts to seem normal.

The ESPYS Experience

9 Jul

Hey there, sports fans! Confession: I’ve always wanted to say that. At any rate, I do have actual sports-related news. As I’m sure you’re aware, the ESPYS are next Wednesday. If you haven’t voted yet, hit that link and do it now, I’ll wait.

You back? Good. Now, since you’re such a huge sports fan, and your weekends are empty and sad without football (25 days til preseason people, we can get through this) you probably want to get even more involved. You want to be a bigger part of the sports Oscars. I know, I understand. I’m with you. In spirit, I’m not actually with you. That would be weird and creepy. I swear I’m getting to the point.

espysWhat if I told you that you could be a part of the ESPYS this year? Well with The ESPYS Experience, you can. If you’re going to be in or around Downtown LA next Wednesday, July 16, from noon to 6:00pm, you can be a part of the ESPYS. Or, you know, if you want to drive to Downtown LA at that time. That would work to, you don’t have to already be there. So wherever you are in SoCal, get yourself to the Nokia Plaza at LA Live.

The ESPYS Experience is FREE and open to the public. Bring the kids for a fun afternoon of events, activities, and performances.

Check out the full lineup:

12:00p – 6:00p: ESPYS Experience

12:00p: Music & Games

12:15p: HS Dance Team Contests Begin! Crowd Votes for Dance Teams & Award Presentations

1:00p: Dunk Contest Begins

2:00p: Mascot Dance Off

2:20p: Dunk Contest Finals

3:00p: ESPYS 2014 Red Carpet Opens!

3:00p: Performance: World-Famous Jabbawockeez!

3:15p: Interview with the Jabbawockeez and Knicks Kid Reporters

3:35p: Performance: 8 Flavahz Dancers

3:50p: Performance: Academy of Villians Dancers

4:30p: Musical Performance: ZZ Ward

5:30p: Surprise Superstar ‘Billboard Top 10’ Performance!

6:00p: 2014 ESPYS Show Beings on ESPN!

Oh, did you catch that “Surprise Superstar” performance? Yeah, don’t ask, because they won’t tell me who it is. Evidently I can’t be trusted not to blab. These are smart people.

Not in SoCal? In SoCal but busy Wednesday afternoon? Wow, sad for you.

I kid, I kid. No matter where you are, you can live tweet along with @ESPYS and #ESPYS. The best news? The ESPYS are LIVE for everyone, even the West Coast! So really, there’s no excuse not to live tweet. Come on, all the cool kids are doing it! (Disclaimer: By “cool kids”, I mean me. So do with that what you will.) See you on Wednesday!

Holiday Weekend Reading

3 Jul

Ahoy, matey, thar be affiliate links ahead!

There’s nothing quite like a holiday weekend, is there? If you’ll be spending this weekend at the beach, the lake, or just in your backyard, you’re going to want a book to bring along. Because there’s something glorious about sitting outside reading a book on a weekday. Here are a few of my picks.

If you like Jim Gaffigan, try Dad Is Fat. I know, I just blew your mind. If you like Jim Gaffigan, read Jim Gaffigan. But seriously, this is everything you love about his stand up specials, only in book form. It’s mostly about his kids, but I enjoyed it anyway. I’m going to give it to my cousin, who’s one of the best dads I know. Of course, he probably won’t get a chance to read it for the next ten years, but that’s his problem, not mine.

If you like David Sedaris, try Will Not Attend. Resnick is your friendly neighborhood misanthrope, and his essays had me cracking up, especially his tale of Disney woe. I like this guy, he gets me. Because people, ugh.

If you like the Stephanie Plum books, try Guilt by Association. Don’t expect the slapstick comedy of a Plum book, but you will get a sharp mystery with a touch of levity (so it’s not too scary, I mean hey, I live alone). Clark’s writing is elegantly detailed, she doesn’t miss a beat, and you won’t be able to put it down until you’re finished.

If you like Jessica Beck, try Real Murders. A light mystery that’s just a touch darker than your usual cozy fare, this is a fast read that’s great for the beach. It’s the first in a series, but they go downhill after the first one, so do yourself a favor and pretend it’s a stand-alone.

I racked my brain (and my Kindle) trying to find something I’ve read recently that wasn’t a mystery or a humor anthology, and I got nuthin’. Hey, I like what I like. I know there are other genres out there, so if you’ve read something great lately, tell me about it!

Is Your Dog Fit?

30 Jun

Thanks so much to Purina Dog Chow for sponsoring this post!

Did you know that 53% of dogs in the United States are overweight? And yet, according to a survey by Purina Dog Chow, only 22% of dog owners think their dog is overweight. Listen, I know we all think our dogs are perfect, and that’s why it’s important to talk to your vet about your dog’s weight to make sure he’s healthy and perfect. (Only 41% of survey respondents rely on their vet to determine if their dog is overweight.) I took Teddy to the vet this weekend and she confirmed my suspicions, Bear is perfect.

Dogs don’t understand things like “fat”, “overeating”, “healthy food”, and so on and so forth. That’s why it’s up to us to look out for them. The good news is that keeping our dogs fit helps keep us fit too! 77% of dog owners surveyed said they would rather exercise with their dog than go to they gym, and I couldn’t agree more. Going to the gym is a special kind of awful.

The bonus to keeping Teddy fit is that I stay fit too. Because Bear can’t walk himself, so I have to peel my butt off the couch to take him for a lap around the ‘hood a few times a day.

Want dog fitness advice from an actual expert, and not some random crazy blogger? Well I’m glad you asked. Dr. Grace Long, DVM, MS, MBA has four simple steps to keeping your dog fit or helping your overweight hound slim down.

1. Count Calories. Consider switching your pouchy pooch to a lower calorie food.

2. Perfect Portions. Make sure you’re not overfeeding! Always check the feeding guidelines on your dog’s food.

3. Get Moving. If your pet is overweight, start slow, and make sure to talk with your vet to make sure you’re not overdoing it or hurting your dog’s joints, especially if he’s older.

4. Make a Plan. And stick to it! Don’t get suckered in by those adorable begging eyes asking for table scraps.

If you’re looking for a lower calorie food to help your dog lose weight or maintain their svelte form, try Purina Dog Chow Light & Healthy. Teddy has been eating it for about a year, and he loves it! There are actual pieces of freeze dried chicken, that you can easily identify as chicken. I like that. If you want to try Light & Healthy, you can print a $2 off coupon on their website.

But wait, there’s more! I’ve got a giveaway for (1) 4 lb bag of Light & Healthy, plus (2) coupons for a free 16.5 lb bag! That’s 37 lbs of food!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

BONUS PSA: 4th of July weekend is upon us – please keep your pets safe! Make sure they have proper identification and their microchips are up to date. Keep dogs on leashes or inside, and make sure to ask your friends not to sneak them table scraps.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Purina Dog Chow Light & Healthy. They are providing the giveaway prize. I really do feed Teddy this food. All opinions are my own. Please check with your vet before changing your dog’s diet or exercise regime. I am not a vet.