Farewell to Fall

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As soon as September rolled around, it was all things pumpkin spice and it seemed like summer was in the rearview mirror. Now, I am breaking out my cozy sweaters and Christmas socks and playing holiday music any chance I get. Before I delve completely into winter and all things Christmas, I wanted to take minute to reflect on my favorite season: fall. Fall is such a beautiful time in nature and for me, has always been a time of new beginnings.

Fall is when we get to go back to school again and see all our friends. Fall is when we get to trade our shorts for cozy vests and our flip flops for riding boots. Fall is nature’s finally before everything green is buried in a blanket of snow. What a more beautiful way to mark an ending (and new beginning) than with a vibrant display of beautiful colors.

So here is my farewell to fall, it will be a whole year before we meet again and I hope that the next season of vibrant colors finds me in a new place with renewed hope for life and all its beauty.

Outfit details here.

Autumn Wonderland: A Trip to the White Mountains

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My Sweater: Forever 21 (similar here) | My Vest: TJMaxx (similar here)|My Scarf: TJ Maxx  (similar here)| My Pants: Forever 21 (similar here)| Our boots: Hunter |Abby’s Shirt: Gap (similar here & here) | Abby’s Jeans: American Eagle |

This post took me much longer to write than I was hoping and that’s because I took so many gorgeous photos during my trip that the idea of editing them all was so daunting. So I kept putting it off, but I need to share them with you guys because they are truly, truly magical.

Over Columbus Day Weekend, Abby and I (and my mom!) took a trip up to the White Mountains in New Hampshire. It’s about a two hour drive for me and the weather said that it was supposed to rain so we almost didn’t go. I am so glad we did though, because even though it did rain a little, the trees were still so beautiful that it made it all worth it.

While driving along the highway, we could see color bursting out in all directions. It really was something out of a dream. When I was younger, my family would always take trips up to see the foliage. I definitely didn’t appreciate the long car rides and seeing all the colors back then, but I certainly see the beauty of it now.

I hope that this is a renewed start of that tradition because the magic of the foliage up North is something I would love to see again and again.

Do you guys have any favorite fall traditions? Comment below!

Love Ashley

 

What to Pack for Thanksgiving Break

 

Thanksgiving Packing ListCollege students know the ups and downs of the fall semester. The excitement of going to sporting events and seeing your friends. The piles of work each week that seem endless. And the unmatched joy of knowing that a break is right around the corned. Fall is the best because it’s filled with fun mini breaks that help to make the semester feel less tiresome. One of the challenges though is deciding what and what not to pack. If you’re anything like me, packing can be a real nightmare that leads to your bag being stuffed fatter than the Thanksgiving turkey.

After years and years of overpacking (three years of boarding school and 4 years of college), I think I finally have found the perfect system that avoids piles of clothes and a bag that won’t zip.

The key is to try and plan your outfits in advance. This helps to alleviate the panic of “I need to pack this too because I might wear it!” Trust me, you probably won’t. Half the stuff I packed was stuff that I wanted to wear but didn’t put together in a full outfit, so it just got thrown to the side and then repacked.

The best place to start is with a clean space. Clutter around you only makes packing seem more overwhelming and puts things in your line of sight that you may accidentally end up throwing in too.

Before I pack, I always tidy my room and make sure my bed is made. It gives me peace of mind and a clean spot to lay out my clothes. It’s always best to do laundry first too (that’s a big stretch though, especially if half the reason you are so eager to go home is so that you can finally do your laundry in peace without fear that some random is going to waltz by and steal your dryer).

Once you have a clear space in front of you, plan out one outfit for each day that you are home. Sometimes I start by writing out a list, sometimes I start by laying out clothes…it all depends!

When you’re planning think of what you’ll be doing that day. I know for certain that I won’t want to be wearing a skirt and heels on Black Friday, when I’m running around like a crazy person. And I know that I won’t want anything tight fitted on Thursday because I plan to eat my weight in food (mostly dessert).

As you’re going through your outfit plans, make sure to ask yourself “will I actually wear this?” If the answer is yes, then put it in the pile, if the answers no, it’s best to leave it at home. It’s also good to try and think of pieces that you can wear multiple times. I planned at least two outfits around my tan vest so that’s one less thing I need to pack.

Be sure to be realistic with yourself. You probably won’t be home for more than a week, so you probably don’t need to pack three different pairs of jeans and 5 different pairs of leggings. I try and keep it to one pair of jeans, one pair of nice black pants, and a pair of leggings. Also try to keep in mind what you already may have at home. I know that I keep extra pajamas at home so I don’t need to worry about taking them back and forth.

The one thing you can never pack too much of is socks, I always seem to need more socks! Try and keep your shoes to a minimum as well. This is where I always struggle the most! I want to bring home all my boots and flats and booties and they just take up so much space! This year I am sticking with my tan boots (last seen here), my black heeled booties, my black Tory Burch flats, and my Hunter rain boots. Even that is probably too many pairs but hey, nobody’s perfect!

Anyway, once you’ve chosen all of your outfits and consolidated as much as possible, try and find a bag that will hold everything. I sometimes pick a bag that is too small and end up with multiple. My go to for weekends are the Vera Bradley Large Duffles. They come in lots of pretty prints and hold everything!

If you need a little inspiration, here is my packing list for this year. A few more things may slip in, like my cozy blanket scarf, but for the most part this is it!

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Now that you’re packed and ready to go you can sit back and relax and think of all the delicious food you get to eat!

Do you guys have any go-to packing advice? Or any suggestions on what bags are good for travel (I’m always on the hunt for new ones!)? Feel free to share below!

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A Dreamlike Dinner Cruise around Boston Harbor

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Dress: Primp (wearing size S) | Shoes: also from Primp (but they’re not online. Similar ones here & here) | Bag: Tory Burch (old, similar here) | Necklace: J.Crew Factory | Bracelet: old (similar here) |

Happy Friday!

While in Sioux Falls, South Dakota last week, I stumbled upon the cutest shop called Primp. It was filled with the cutest clothes including this dress! As soon as I put it on I knew it was coming back to Massachusetts with me!

Its simple but elegant, plus it is so unbelievably comfortable. Unfortunately Primp Boutiques are only located in the Midwest, but you can shop their website here! I plan on wearing this dress a lot because it can be style so many ways. Look out for another post coming soon on all the different ways you can wear a dress like this!

This past Wednesday, I got my first chance to wear it when I went on a dinner cruise with my family to celebrate my mom’s birthday. We boarded the Odyssey Boston just behind the Boston Harbor Hotel.

As soon as we were on board, we placed out orders and headed up to the deck to take in all the views. It was still light out and there was so much to see from a cool new angle. There was the city on one side and Logan airport next to it. We watched planes take off and boats go by as the afternoon poured into evening.

Soon it was time for dinner, we each ordered something different and everything was amazing. To start I had a light lobster bisque it was so good I had to remember to pace myself because I knew there was so much more food coming!

For dinner I had crab cakes. I don’t eat meat (apart from seafood) so I’m never a good judge of most entrées, but being on the coat, I know I can never go wrong with a freshly caught meal from the Atlantic. My mom got the salmon and let me try a little. It was amazing! I eat a lot of salmon, it’s my go-to, so I can be pretty picky about it. This salmon was so light and flavorful. It was perfectly crispy on the outside and flaky and pink on the inside.

 

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We had a little while between dinner and dessert so we headed back up to the top deck to soak in all the beauty of golden hour on the Boston Harbor. The lower the sun sank, the richer the color. By the end of the evening the sunk was s deep hot pink that stretched across the horizon.

Shortly after the sun went down, it was time for dessert. I had a summery raspberry and lemon sorbet, and it was so yummy! I also got to taste my sister’s salted caramel chocolate ganache and my mom’s vanilla bean cake with ice cream they were both so good too! I am the biggest dessert fanatic, so I was in heaven.

By the end of the night our bellies were full and my mom had a smile on her face that melted my heart. She kept saying what a great day it was and I was so happy to share in her special day. When I made it back home I fell asleep thinking about my newest memory made in my beautiful Bay State.

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An Afternoon in Boston

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Top: Old (similar here) | Jeans: Lucky Brand | Shoes: Target (last seen here) | Bracelets: Old (similar here) |

Hi guys! Today I’m going to be giving you a little peak into my life in the Bay State. I was born and raised in Massachusetts and this little state holds a very big part of my heart.

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My house is located just over ten miles north of Boston and I grew up taking trips to the North End with my dad, almost always leaving with a belly full of pasta, bread, and cannoli. Before school started, my mom used to take me to the shops on Newbury Street to pick out a new outfit. From duck tours, to swan boats, to trips on the T, I’ve made my way around this city more times than I can count, but it never seems to get old. Just like me, Boston has changed so much over the years, so each time I go in there always seems to be something new to explore.

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This summer I have gotten to spend the most time in Boston by far because I am interning right in the heart of the Financial District. I love it so much. I love the train ride in each morning, getting to read my book and sneak views of the passing buildings. I love getting to look out my window and see the cityscape. And I love that there is so much around every corner. Whenever I get a chance, I love to get outside and explore. Sweetgreen is also been my food obsession of the summer and I still haven’t gotten over the fact that its just a few hundred feet from my door.

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On this particular trip I visited the Public Garden, just next to Boston Common. I got to see the little duckling statues I used to play on as a kid and watch the swan boats go by. The skies were a bit gray but there was no rain, so my mom and I ventured on.

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After watching the swans and ducks splash around in the water, we crossed the bridge and began to head out. On our way we passes some of the most beautiful flowers. I love that even cities have spots with such natural beauty.

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Right across the Garden is Newbury Street, one of my favorite places. On Newbury street you can find all sorts of shops from high end retailers, to small boutiques, and even secondhand shops. Newbury Street also has some great places to eat like Stephanie’s on Newbury and Amorino. Not to mention all the beautiful brownstones that give it its charm!

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Our shopping adventure lead us to Copley Place where I found this blue and white gingham dress at J.Crew for under $30! I loved it so much that I wore it out of the store. The afternoon was drifting away into evening and I was ready to get some food. The weather wasn’t improving, so we decided to grab a bite on the way home.

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Just outside the city is Assembly Square. I pass it everyday on my commute and always have to fight the urge to get out and explore. Its set right on the water with boats anchored. Its home to shops, restaurants, apartments and even a movie theater. It really has it all! It must be such a fun place to live! By the time we got there we were both very hungry so we walked into a restaurant called Legal on the Mystic. One of the best parts about living right near the ocean is all the fresh seafood! I got a salad with Salmon and it was amazing!

As we ate, the sun began to set over the water and I had to fight every urge to run outside mid-meal to take a picture of the view. I will most definitely be going back again to fully explore.

I finally made it back home exhausted from my day and and drifted off with another great memory from such a beautiful city.

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