Thursday, May 26, 2016

2 Summer Salad Recipes You'll Love!



This salad is filled with pears (I use Anjou pears), craisins, pichastios, blue cheese, sunflower seeds and grilled chicken.  I use a Baby Kale/Spring mix lettuce.  I try to do as much organic as possible, but there are some things that I can't find (the nuts).  But I will not compromise on fruit or lettuce!  I found this salad from a little chain restaurant here and adapted the dressing.  It's pretty spot on if I do say so myself.  Sherry vinegar has such a great flavor you have to try it!  This has been my go-to salad for a few months (yes you read that right).  When I find something that I love, I sort of eat it almost every day.  My husband finds it very strange.  Whatever.  This is easy and then I don't have to decide what to eat!  Right? :)


Sherry Vinaigrette Dressing

1 cup of canola oil
1/4 cup of sherry vinegar
1 Tbsp of dijon mustard
4 Tbsp of honey
pinch of salt and pepper



Another summer salad I love is this Salmon Strawberry salad.  Again I use the Baby Kale/Spring Mix lettuce plus strawberries (obviously), slivered almonds, feta cheese, and red onion.  This salad is from a yummy bakery in Pittsburgh that a family friend owns.  When I tried it I HAD to have the dressing and I added the salmon.

I'll be sharing more of my favorite foods, snacks and what I eat most days on Snapchat today (simplylulustyle)!

Orange Honey Dressing

1 cup of canola oil
1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
1/2 cup of orange juice
1/2 cup of honey
pinch of salt and pepper


I'd love to hear your favorite salads!  Let me know if you try these and what you think :)

Don't forget to check out the Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale!  I wasn't really able to check it out until yesterday night and OH... MY... GOSH!  Such awesome deals.  Seriously don't miss out.  You can check out my favorites HERE and I'll be updating it daily throughout the sale.  Get to this page on my side bar too!



xo Lulu

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

The Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale!


Get the goodies while they last folks!  Some perfect picks for you below :)

Happy Shopping!
xo Lulu





Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Dresses Under $100!




I love a great pair of jeans.  But in the summer, I live in sundresses.  Today I'm sharing my favorites under $100 :)  Find more gorgeous pieces under $50 here!

Have a wonderful day!
xo Lulu

Monday, May 23, 2016

Cold Shoulder Sweater









------- OUTFIT DETAILS -------

Ella Moss sweater  ||  J Brand jeans (My favorite white jeans.  They are so comfortable!), similar under $65  ||  J.Crew Factory heels  ||  Saint Laurent sunnies, old, love these! (similar under $20)  ||  Clare V. clutch (similar under $100)  ||  jewelry - Julie Vos  ||  NARS lipgloss, Turkish Delight

The weather here in Philadelphia has been less than springy.  When I bought this sweater months ago, at the Shopbop sale, I had visions of wearing in just a few weeks for a special date night.  Well here it and I'm finally getting to break it out!  

Although it's almost sold out (find it here), I've linked some gorgeous options for you below.  This cold shoulder top is stunningly simple and perfect for a girls night out or a night with your honey.  This one has also caught my eye and I think would be a beautiful addition to a beach get away!



We're having a big month here packing up and moving.  There was a time where I think I moved almost every year.  But it's now been 8 years since I moved and the amount of stuff we have...  INSANE!  I'm sharing all the fun, craziness, and more on Snapchat.  So join me :) @simplylulustyle

Happy Monday friends!
xo Lulu

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Spring Uniform

-------  OUTFIT DETAILS -------

cross body bag  //  crop flare jeans  //  sweater  //  wedges  //  utility jacket  //  sunnies  //  ring  //  lipgloss

Happy hump day!  In the northeast we haven't had much of a spring yet.  I'm told by those weather people that next week we should actually see the sun more than once in the week!  Yippee!  To combat this cray cray weather it's layering and jackets for me :)  I'm loving this color combo too, subtle, yet with a touch of spring.  This sweater is up to 30% off.  I love military jackets and this one is 40% off (not too many sizes left), but this is also a gorgeous jacket too.  I just bought this bag and I'm sure I'll be using it a lot (it's also on sale).  It's perfect for summer errands.  I've been on the lookout for some great wedges and these caught my eye.  I like the height and they look super comfortable.  This is another pair that are so cute.

What is your spring uniform?   Check out more of my favorites below.



Thanks for stopping by, have a great day!
xo Lulu

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hello Again

The beautiful city we are moving to!  Photo courtesy of Chris Litherland Photography (he's amazing!)

Hi. :)  It's been some time huh?  I had not anticipated that it would be this long before writing a post on Simply Lulu, but honestly it was a much needed break.  A lot of people think that blogging is just taking a few snaps and posting it.  But many hours go into each post.  It's a lot of time, effort, thinking, considering, researching, editing, and well a lot of love.  If you read my last post, (here), you also know that the blog had become very different from how I started.  I'm hoping to get back to regular posts.  Although not every day, you'll see me here, each week.

So with all that said, I'm going to follow up on my last post on where I've been and what I've been up to.  WARNING!  This is a long post, feel free to skim if you like!  Haha.  In my last post I had listed 10 things that I was going to focus on during my break.  Today I'm really going to share just one of those today.

Family first.  Wow has it been a stressful 4 months.  When I wrote that last blog post I had no idea how difficult it would become.  Things with my husband's job got so stressful for him that he lost 25 pounds!  He wasn't sleeping, he wasn't eating.  I had never seen this man I love so dearly so beaten down.  It broke my heart.  Through it all though, God was with us.  Simultaneously to this happening to my husband was a deep down, all out desire, to move back to my hometown of Pittsburgh.  It was a crazy thought because I love Philadelphia.  I love the area, the great restaurants, and shopping (of course).  Not to mention that I had just started plans on building a new business here!  So to move now was well, the only thing I could figure is that this desire had come from the Lord.  I always miss my family, but I literally could not stop crying wishing to be near them.  My husband and I talked and decided together that he would start looking for a job in Pittsburgh.

My husband's work is not a job where there are a lot of opportunities around, let alone in the smaller city of Pittsburgh.  He's very specialized and so I wasn't too optimistic that he would find anything in the next year or even the next two years (NEVER doubt the will of God).   He applied to one job in the Pittsburgh area that had been open for quite some time, but we were not hopeful.  As his job here was going completely south, every day it was more and more stressful on him.  He decided to call a company in Pittsburgh that he had interviewed with last year when he was just looking around.  It hadn't worked out at the time, but had hit it off with one of the interviewers.  He called in and spoke with the Admin who told him she didn't know of any positions, but would forward his resume to her boss.  Ten minutes later she called back saying that her boss would like to talk to him.  As it turns out they were looking for 2 people to add to their team.  The position hadn't been posted yet, the job description hadn't even been created yet!  Nonetheless they wanted to talk to him.  Fast forward 3 months.  My husband had spoke to them on the phone, interviewed with them in person, they offered the job to him, and he's starting a week from today!  Friends when I tell you that God was with us through it all - GOD was with us through it all.  The perfect timing of everything was amazing.  I have seen God's hands at work through us trying and eventually getting pregnant.  But during that time I was the one going through the tremendous stress.  I was taking the drugs, going through tests/procedures, feeling the pressure, so I couldn't really 'be' and see God's handiwork.  I felt God through it all, but I was sort of in a fog, going through all the motions.  Being on the outside of this time I could actually see God working.  I could feel Him talking to me, giving me peace.  I can't get into all the details here it's just too long, but friends, God is awesome!

During the months where my husband was in his stress, I decided to get our house ready to sell.  I didn't know of course that he would find a job so quickly, but I needed something to distract me and well my house needed a good decluttering!  As it became more clear that they were very interested in my husband my list to get the house on the market became longer and more focused.  This drives my husband crazy.  Once I get started on a project I'm like a woman on a mission - nothing will stop me!  I seriously can't do anything else until the job is finished.  Because he was so stressed I didn't want to ask his help with anything.  When I tell  you I lived in yoga pants for over a month, I literally did.  Decluttering, moving furniture, painting, cleaning, staining the deck, more painting, cleaning the carpets, the list was on and on.  And I was exhausted, but I knew it would be worth it.

My plan was to be ready!  Ready so when the offer came in, we could put the house on the market.  I had sold our first house myself, no realtor, so I was pretty confident I knew what I was doing.  The tricky part was pricing it right because there was so many variables for our house, neighborhood, and location.  My hope was that our house would sell by the time my kiddos were finished with school (about the middle of June).  We had made plans months ago to go to Pittsburgh for 2 weeks after school, then away for another week in July for our annual trip to Martha's Vineyard.  So if the house could sell before that would be wonderful.  I wasn't sure how I would "show" the house if I wasn't here!

My husband got his official offer letter on a Friday, we celebrated Saturday, he gave his notice the next Wednesday, I put the house on the market that Friday, and we got an offer the following Monday!  That might be a little confusing, but everything closed in 10 days!!  Talk about a whirlwind :)  I knew we had a great house, but the location is pretty far from the city (think horse country), so I didn't know if it would sell that quickly.  I never imagined it would sell in 3 days.  God was and is in it all friends.

God is good that's all I can say.  A note to some of you who might be going through some difficult things.  If you're in the struggle, of course it's hard.  Through this experience, it's made me stronger and it will make you stronger too IF you let it.  I love my Jesus, but through this, I'm IN love with my Jesus.  Take time to be with Him.  Every day I make it my priority to read through the Bible.  The YouVersion app is great for this.  They have devotions you can read and I've highlighted countless verses that have spoken to me.  These verses given me a peace and hope, so that I can go back to them when my mind wanders.  As soon as my mind would go to those dark places of doubt, worry and fear, I would pull them up on my phone and read through them.  Focus your eyes on the Lord and let everything else fade away.  Prayer walk, take time to breath, rejoice and be thankful for His goodness.  Believe in the power of prayer and know that Jesus is your advocate.  Who could be a better advocate?!  He died on the cross for you, He loves you that much!  These are the things that kept me going and gave me strength.

Ok, I think I've gone off a little and I'm going to get back and finish up!  So we're moving!  The end of June is when we're closing, but we're going to be packed up by the middle of June so as not to disrupt our summer plans.  I'm excited, nervous, not sure where exactly we're going to live??  Not to mention I'm starting my new business in Pittsburgh...  Yikes!....  Breath...  Take one day, one moment, at a time.

I'll be doing my best to post some fun outfit inspiration and sharing what's going on here.  But you can find more on Instagram: @simplylulustyle and Snapchat: simplylulustyle

Thank you so much for reading!  My husband and I truly have an adventurous marriage.  From getting married in a snowstorm, to waiting and praying for our little nuggets and now moving to a new city, we're in it together.   Together, with God.  What could be better?  :)

xo Lulu

Friday, January 22, 2016

2016


Well hello there!  I know, I know... I've been a bit MIA.  I took a much needed break and honestly I'm not quite sure I'm coming back yet to blogging, social media, craziness! Haha.  The time away from all my screens has been so good for me and my family.  We are also embarking on some new changes and challenges and I just don't think blogging fits into that schedule.

Blogging has just changed from when I started.  It was first about sharing outfit inspirations and slowly it was about just the stuff.  What have I bought, what am I doing, where am I going.  That's not what I want people to think of me.  That's not who I am.

You may have seen my posts in December about the refugees in Syria and the video my church shared.  I think this significantly changed me, my heart, my soul.  God really spoke to me and basically just said, "Stop."  This is not why I created you.  I began to get so antsy with all the stuff and clutter.  Not just the physical clutter but the needless mind clutter - Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat.  I needed to breathe.

So after the new year I started to think about what I want not just for my life but my family's life.  Cause ya know they are a BIG part of me.  I came up with 10 things that I am making a priority in my life.  These are not crazy things.  These are small but big things that will make a difference in me and people around me.

1.) Love God, love people.  This came from the book "For the Love" by Jen Hatmaker.  It's an amazing book full of belly laughs and warm thoughts.  This is just a basic saying right?   Love God, love people.  That's what it comes down to, but not always so easy.  It's a work in progress.

2.) Family first.  Again, should be a no brainier, but man it's hard sometimes.  When emails need to be answered, that blog post needs to get done, laundry is piling up.  It's also about those little moments we never get back.  The snuggling with my kiddos when you're waking them up for school, that high five after a great practice.  BE in the moment.   It's a work in progress.

3.) Wisdom.  Man I need this.  The Mr and I are making some pretty tough decisions lately and my biggest prayer lately has been wisdom.  Making decisions that affect your family and kiddos is so tough.  It's a work in progress.

4.) Slow down & have Peace.  For much of my life it's been all about hustle.  How fast can I get there, I have so much to do, how much can I get done in a short amount of time.  It's a never ending fast paced marathon.  It seems like everyone wants to have a fast paced life. All the house shows (that I love to watch) talk about their crazy fast paced life.  It's as if to say that if your busy, you're happy, productive and popular.  But is that true?  Is that a good thing?  I'm not so sure.  I'm making it my mission to ssslllooowww down.  It's a work in progress.

5.) Be Positive.  It's so easy to see the negative, complain (just caught myself in a major complaining tantrum tonight!), go in a downward spiral.  I'm trying hard to stop this thinking.  Breathe.  Turn it around.  Think of something positive about that situation, person, or thing.  It's a work in progress.

6.) Simplify.  Less IS more!  After Christmas I went on a cleaning and decluttering rage.  And ladies and gentlemen when I say rage I mean 16 trash bags to Goodwill, 2 huge garbage cans of trash, 3 ginormous Tupperware containers to second hand stores, and the cleaning is still going on.  Granted I did not part with my Louboutins or Valentinos but I parted with 50% of my closet.  I have come to realize that We. Have. So. Much. STUFF!  It's crazy and ridiculous right?  It's a work in progress.

7.) Need vs Want.  This goes along with #6.  I can completely recognize that I rarely NEED anything.  So I'm trying my best when I want something?  Think it through, why do I want it, will I use or wear it?  How often?  Over the last few years of blogging there were pieces that I literally wore 1 time!  It's a work in progress.

8.)  More Real.  Less Fake.  Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat... Do we really share our real life?  We often share the things, good or great things we want people to see. I just heard they people are more depressed after reading through their Facebook feed.  What a terrible testament to social media.  For sure it has done some incredible things, made people aware of great causes and given us some belly laughs but depression?  Wow, it's a work in progress.

9.) Who not What.  I am prepared to think about and become who I should, want to be, and be joy-filled in that.  Comfortable in my "who" ness. Not what I am now, mother, wife, co-worker, daughter, blogger.  Who am I?  Some days I'm still figuring it out.  I am heart felt, an introvert, artistic.  But I am also impatient and a know it all sometimes (Eek, that's hard to admit!).  Definitely a work in progress!

10.) More Pages, less Screens.  Seems like everything is going towards computers, iPads, Nooks, anything with a screen.  Gone are the days of reading a book that has pages!  Well some of this is fantastic (no more crazy heavy back packs), I think we need to not forget about the beautiful feeling of turning the page of a real book!  I told you about a great book in #1. Now I'm onto another wonderful book that I'll share soon.  I'm learning so much it's awesome!  It's a work in progress!

So there you have it.  My top 10.  You may not see me as much but I'll check in.  Know that I'm growing in Christ, learning to love more, and simplifying so that I can slow down and be in the moments that mean the most.  Because life is a work in progress.


Much love to all of you dear friends.

xo Lulu

 
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