i upgrade

The time has come.
To update my cellular duds.

And as smitten as I am with my HTC Droid Incredible (two years...no issues whatsoever), I'm aching for a phone with a cute case.  So that when I take instagram photos of myself in the mirror, you'll be able to admire it.  Yup, that's my sole purpose for upgrading to the iPhone.

But onto more important decisions. Do I indulge in a case featuring my love of stripes?  Go for an ombre effect?  Snatch up a case with one of my favorite quotes or a quirky message on the back?

I think I've narrowed it down to these six so far.  And the current front runner is the mermaid lagoon case from Pencil Shavings Studio.  Pool blue and coral in a wave pattern?  Me, in an iPhone case.

Which case are you rocking?   Any you're currently coveting?
Do share.

You can also find me over on Fancy This dishing about my favorite vacation spot.  It's my own personal heaven.


marinas are my jam

No really.
Some people get all giddy when they walk into a high-end hotel or boutique.
We drive past a marina and I'm like, hold the phone.  I need to see this.

There's something so serene yet exhilarating about marinas to me.  Seeing large, powerful boats gracefully tied up, bobbing ever so slightly in their slip.  Just waiting to be let loose into the open water.

Seven days in Fort Myers meant seven days of blissfully exploring Gulf Harbour Yacht Club.
Seven days.
I didn't even mind the few days of cloudy weather we had.
I had boats to occupy my time.

  Every so often a fish would jump out of the water to grab a bite.
Impossible to catch on film.  And apparently not allowed to be caught.

I have a thing for ropes.  In a non-50shades type of way.
It just fascinates me that a tiny rope can hold more than seven tons steady.

Yeah, marinas are my kind of eye-candy.
What's yours?


blating in sarasota

Blate [bleyt] :  blogger + date; internet friending at its finest.
 origin: across the pond.  literally. 

I blated while I was spending a little time down in Florida a few weeks ago.  My good friend Candice invited me to drive up to Sarasota for lunch and I jumped at the chance. And then immediately was nervous enough to pee my pants.

 If you've never been on a blate before, let me tell you.  Each time you meet someone new, it's always nerve-wracking.  First of all, everyone who doesn't blog thinks you're completely nuts.  'You're going to meet who?  Someone you met on the internet?  Wait, you consider her your best friend but you've never actually met?  Are you sure you're not going to end up on one of those Dateline specials?'

Then you get the first date nerves.
Even though you know everything about this person right down to what nail polish she's wearing that week.  (For the record Candice, I was totally expecting mint with glitter.  Way to throw a curveball with that tangerine!)  You feel like you're going on a blind date simply because you need to reassure yourself that this person does exist.

And after all that turmoil and speculation, you meet them, reassure yourself that they are real and then you have one of the greatest days of your life.
Point one for internet dating friendshipping.

Especially since this blate was one of my best yet.
I pretty much walked through Station 400's doors and was immediately enveloped in a hug.

She's a hugger like me.  I was smitten already.
She's also ridiculously sweet, stunning and pretty much exactly as I expected.
We caught up, shared stories, laughed and giggled.
Dined on orange-honey chicken salad, topped with mango chutney.

And then because the blate can't just end with lunch, Candice decided to show me around her favorite shopping area.  And the Lily Pulitzer store.  Which was unbelieveable.
A bright heaven of clothing.  And the walls.  Oh the walls.  Covered in these amazing hand-drawn pictures and patterns.  I don't know how you can walk in this store and not instantly be happy.

 Yeah, we hang out in dressing rooms, don't you?

 And we had to stop by Candice's favorite French shop: Le Marcaron.  Because every blate needs a little dessert :) 

Light, melt-in-your mouth marcarons.
 Perfectly crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside.

Dessert doesn't get much better than this.

 The best part of the entire day had to be when we randomly ran into Candice's dad.
And then I was mistaken as his daughter.
Whatever, I'm practically family anyway.

I mean come on...we totally look like sisters right?


sanibel island

A long, long time ago, before I was probably even a thought, my parents went to Sanibel Island.
I've heard unending stories about this place: the water, the clean white sand, the shells and the infamous Bubble Room.

What can I say?  I figured some nostalgia was in play there.  I mean really, they were on the island a long time ago.  How much could they REALLY remember...
But it was every bit as perfect as my mom said it would be.

Clear, bright blue water.
Shells galore, just waiting for treasure hunters.
Oh, and the food.  The food.

I have a thing for ropes.

After a morning well-spent gazing at the gulf and shell hunting, we stopped in at The Island Cow, which apparently is the local hot spot for breakfast and lunch.
Cows everywhere?  I approve.

Coconut scallop po'boy and a catfish reuben?
Throw in sweet potato fries and I am a happy girl.

Key West Sunset Ale is the way to go after a long morning working hard at the beach.



This happens.

We just put on our hats and our inner Michael Jackson comes out.
That's alright though.
We aim to entertain.

 [target mint tank, express lace back tank, express skinnies, target sandals (last year), urban outfitters hat
[wren's target fedora]

I'm off to celebrate Suzi and Jon's wedding this weekend :)
I hope your weekend is full of sunshine!



 A trip to Ft Myers via instagram.
I take way too many pictures which results in a mass editing session.  So these little snip-its will have to do for now.

 Beautiful pools at the Gulf Harbour Yacht and Country Club.
Morning coffee on the terrace.
Wine, laughter and good friends.
Spending the day with Candice.  A dream come true.
Marinas are my jam.
Soft sunsets.
Sanibel beaches.
Breakfast served in bed.
Traveling attire: H&M shirt/watch, Target scarf/cross-body, Express jeans and Urban Outffiters hat


Special thanks to my favorites Megan and Amanda for babysitting the ol' blog while I was away playing last week.  If you missed their posts and love seeing gorgeous travel photos, go there...now.


traveling ladies || amanda

This girl lives a dream.
She shares her beautiful home in Okinawa, Japan with her dashing husband.
And spends her time traveling the globe, seeking the most remote places with amazing stories.
Oh, and Amanda's also completely gorgeous and one of the sweetest girls I've ever met.
I'll let you swoon over her photos now.  Which are for purchase in her Etsy shop.
And housed at Marshalls Abroad.


When my dear Nicole asked me to write a travel post, it was easy to choose the location.
After traveling all over the world, I can honestly say the South Pacific is one of the most surreal and breathtaking places we have ever been. 
We spent our honeymoon there {honestly the best week of our entire lives!} so we have memories and emotion attached to it that can't be topped in this lifetime. 
It was even more beautiful than I'd dreamed it would be.

{where we stayed: the Hilton Moorea - paradise!}
{Our over-water bungalow. Inside it had glass floors to see the ocean and a giant footed tub.. amazing.}
{I copyrighted my gorgeous husband}
{We took a day trip to swim with sharks (my husband's dream!) and then hugged some giant sting rays.}
{There's also beautiful hikes with stunning views of the island.}
 {The island of Moorea is part of French Polynesia. And the middle hut is where we ate thee most delicious French crepes every single night. Mine were always filled with chocolate and Cam's with fruit. Yum.}
The South Pacific was truly the most romantic, relaxing, paradisaical, idyllic honeymoon that absolutely surpassed my wildest dreams. 


For more of these amazing trips, check out Marshalls Abroad :)


traveling ladies || megan

I have a real treat for you here.
No really.
One of my favorite people in the world is going to share some of her travel photos with you.
Her name is Megan, we like to think we're sisters.  We'd make it official but that's an awful lot of paperwork.
I love her and now you will too.


Hello Busy Girls! 
(see what I did there?)
I am Megan from Across the Pond..

I am very affectionate towards new people

I am super pumped to be here because I just love Nicole..
and you may not know this,
but we are long lost twins.
(not really)
But I like to think we look similar because it makes me feel closer to her.

Nicole asked me to talk about some of my travel experiences..
and since the list is pretty vast,
i figured i would share the story of my life via picture timeline.
(I am very clever)

I moved to England from Southern California in 2010
to get my Masters at The University of Nottingham

During the first year I traveled to London, Oxford, Scotland, Poland, Germany, Spain, and Portugal.

Towards the middle/end of University I fell in love with a tall northern irish man..

so we traveled to his hometown in Northern Ireland together

and when we graduated, I decided to stay in the UK and we moved to Scotland together...

and traveled throughout Scotland

 eventually I took him home to California..
his first time in the USA ever.

 he loved it.

Now we are back in Scotland waiting for our next adventure :)

I'm sure it'll be good.
(better be, or my blogging career is over)


Want more Megan? Yeah, me too.  She's crashed my blog here before and currently resides here.
You're welcome.

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