Last Minute Gift Guide For Her & Him

We’re getting close, friends! Only four more days until Christmas. I know there are a few procrastinators out there, including myself, who still need to finish shopping (or get started) with their Christmas gift list, but you might be feeling slightly overwhelmed because you don’t know where to start and time is running out.

First, take a deep breath because four days is still plenty of time to knock off that list and find the perfect gift(s). If you haven’t noticed, the internet and social media is oversaturated with fashion and lifestyle bloggers (Ahem!) who have been kind enough to share their personal gift guides and ideas with all of you so all you have to do is login to your Instagram account, scroll through your feed or type in ‘Gift Ideas’ on Google and you’ll be directed to articles and blogs dedicated to helping you knock off everyone on your list.

Now, I’m not going to dedicate this entire post to every possible gift idea out there because, well, it’s four days before Christmas and I would need more than one day to come up with the perfect gift idea for everyone on your list (whom I’ve never met), and quite frankly, I just don’t have that kind of time. What I will do though, is share my personal list that includes some of my favorite items for Her & Him in my top gift buying categories to use as a guide from some of my favorite local and online retailers that ensure delivery by December 24 or that you can easily run out to, including clothes, shoes, handbags, accessories, beauty, electronics and experiences in hopes of making your last few shopping days a little more bearable.



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Black Wednesday, Black Friday, Black Must-Haves

I don’t know about you, but I tend to wear black A LOT, particularly in the fall and winter months. Maybe it’s the gloomy and dreary weather or how it’s already pitch-dark when I’m leaving the office at 5pm that makes me want to reach for one of my black sweaters, tees, tunics and leggings. Or maybe wearing all black just so happens to do a better job of covering up those extra few pounds I usually put on around this time of year thanks to all those social events that fill up my calendar for two months straight primarily consisting of overindulging on victuals and libations.

Well, whatever the reason, I think we can all agree that there’s just something about an all black outfit or an article of black clothing that will always look classy, chic, sexy and mysterious. So in honor of Black Wednesday and Black Friday this week, I have linked some of my favorite fall and winter black must-haves for you to shop or use as a guide to complete your wardrobe with what I consider to be black essentials.


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A Day at Jonamac Apple Orchard

img_0425fullsizerender-editimg_0402A couple of weekends ago, I joined close family friends of ours and their three boys for a fun-filled day of apple picking, hard cider and wine tasting, freshly baked apple donuts and kids’ activities at Jonamac Orchard in Malta, IL, a new fall tradition in the making.

Jonamac Orchard is 90 minutes west of Chicago and fairly easy to get to.  The orchard has been in business for 32 years with over 105 acres of land and over 10,000 apple trees consisting of more than two dozen varieties to choose from.  There are a variety of kids’ activities including the Barn Yard Play Area with a jumping pillow, petting zoo and an Apple Train, as well as a corn maze, campfire and a 12 acre pumpkin patch. If walking through a 12 acre pumpkin patch doesn’t entice you, the Pumpkin Corrall by the Kettle Corn Building near the play area already has hand-picked pumpkins ready for purchase to take home.fullsizerender-1img_0357 fullsizerenderedit4 fullsizerender3pumpkinsWhile my friend Dave and the boys spent some time in the play area, my girlfriend Gwen and I decided to partake in the $5 a person tasting of different blends of apple wine in the Cider House, giving us a head start over Dave until he was able to join us. Our samples of choice included the Orchard Blend (the bottle Dave and Gwen purchased to take home), Orchard Reserve, Autumn Harvest (served warm), Pomme Nouveau and Pumpkin flavored (our least favorite).img_0424img_0409We then headed over to Jonamac’s 20 acre apple orchard where we were able to hand-pick our own apples for $13 a bag, filling each of our bags with a variety of Fuji and large, bright red, tasty Pazzaz apples, a first year harvest at the Orchard. This was our first time trying Pazzaz apples and they were absolutely delicious, a crispy and juicy alternative to Honeycrisp.

fullsizerender-3img_0408fullsizerender-edit2callenimg_0415img_0407fullsizerender4We concluded our day in the kids’ play area where the boys ran around in the haystack, bounced on the jumping pillow, petted goats and slid down the slide, which of course, this big kid right here had to partake in as well. On our way out, Dave and I stopped in the bakery to purchase a homemade apple pie and some fudge, barely making our way through the long line of people waiting to get their hands on those warm, freshly baked, cinnamon coated apple donuts that we got our fix of when we first arrived, a definite must when visiting Jonamac Orchard. Until next year…img_0406fullsizerender-7dgcarsonimg_0375fullsizerender-5img_0625big-chairShop my look:

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Instagram Roundup: Touring Belgrade

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA3/4 Sleeve Black Dress: Marshalls (similar, similar, similar) \ Converse Sneakers: Nordstrom (here) \ Sologne Monogram Crossbody (vintage): Louis Vuitton (similar, similar \ Bangle Cuff Bracelet: Charming Charlie (similar, similar)

00234961-0100234870-0400215532-04_11985578louis-vuitton-odeon-pm-monogram-canvas-the-legendary-monogram-m56390_pm2_front-view1470141_fpx-tif100390181_2_1_13096851img_9566Trapeze Dress in Olive: Forever 21 (similar, similar, similar) \ Halogen Wedge Sandal: Nordstrom (here) \ Burberry Peyton Haymarket Crossbody (2015): Nordstrom (similar, similar) \ Bangle Cuff Bracelet: Charming Charlie (similar, similar) \ Sunglasses: LOFT (here)

0870461580106new_01_0311864542_310812 1958372_338652 _9881946_11625258_12186779100390181_2_1 _13096851imageserviceimg_9565Ribbed Tank Dress in Cobalt: Forever 21 (similar, similar, similar) \ Sologne Monogram Cross Body (vintage): Louis Vuitton (similar, similar) \ Report Flat Sandals: TJ Maxx (similar) \ Silver Bangles: Kate Spade (here, here)

_1275865800169651-0900145317-09louis-vuitton-odeon-pm-monogram-canvas-the-legendary-monogram-m56390_pm2_front-view1470141_fpx-tifsalant_70_rg_7452771_11783285img_0068PAIGE Denim: TJ Maxx (similar, similar, similar) \ Coral Tank: H&M (similar, similar) \ Light Wash Denim Jacket: Akira (similar, similar) \ Platform Slingback Sandals: Michael Kors (here, here) \ Clutch: Louis Vuitton (here, similar) \ Silver Bangles: Kate Spade (here, here) \ Crystal Stud Earrings: Akira (similar)

images-bloomingdales-comimages-bloomingdales-com-2_12792194_12629858_120600211526750_fpx-tif302145069_467_12312129louis-vuitton-pochette-accessoires-monogram-canvas-icons--M40712_PM2_Front viewP18761522_7452771_11783285_11382800img_9591PAIGE Denim: TJ Maxx (similar, similar, similar) \ Black T-Shirt: Zara (here) \ Ankle Strap Heels: Zara (similar, similar) \ Tory Burch Britten Clutch: Nordstrom (here) \ Bar Pendant Necklace Set: Forever 21 (here)


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