Saucy Summer Reads

You may have seen my recommendation for The Bad Behavior of Belle Cantrell in my What I’m Lovin’ in August post, but I’ve got two saucier (and much lighter) recommendations to share with you below!

Earlier this summer I did what I’d been saying I was going to do for a while now: I went to my local library with the sole purpose of finding a book to rent and read! I wasn’t going to be intimidated by the 2 week window (I’m a slow reader) because there is a such thing as renewing online (yay for the internet!).

As it turns out, my library card was so old that I’d been erased from the system.

card

But isn’t my old card so cute?!

No worries, I had a new “Where the Wild Things Are” themed card in no time!

new card

Equally as cute new card.

You see, my local library has many branches which make it super convenient where ever you happen to find yourself around town. They even let you return your book to any branch – regardless of where you rented it. They’re thoughtful like that.

Well, I’m happy to report I’ve been putting some miles on my card and I have some great summer reading recommendations for you!

To start, I’m on a saucy-summer-stories kick. That being said, when I read the back of Stephanie Evanovich’s debut novel I knew it’d be enjoyable!

big girl

Big Girl Panties was a light love story with some juicy scenes for summer.

I hinted how lovely this book was in a previous post about pillows – which by the way, you should totally sew up a pillow to go with these great reading recommendations 😉

As soon as I finished it, I started scouting out her next book which just so happened to release the Tuesday after I finished Big Girl Panties. I ran to my local library that Thursday in search of the book so I’d have it in time for my trip to Baltimore (hello airport sitting…and plane sitting..).

Well dear Stephanie didn’t let me down!

sweet spot

The Sweet Spot was just as delightful!

Although The Sweet Spot is a prequel to Big Girl Panties, you could read these books in any order and still enjoy them. There are connections made between the two stories, but they’re independent so you can easily follow without obligation of reading the other (though I do recommend it!).

These stories were so good, I didn’t even have to renew online! I finished each within the allotted two weeks and happily returned them on time.

These are just two of the saucier books I read this summer. I’m happy to report, I’m still on my “reading kick” so I’ll be sharing more book recommendations soon.

{Read my tiny collection of Book Club recommendations here.}

What did you read this summer? I’m looking for recommendations to get me through the winter 🙂

What I’m Lovin’ in July

Guess what happened again?!

Yep, I’m late on July’s What I’m Lovin’ post, but I figured it’d be a good way to kick off August 😉

resliced by Jordan

Here’s my list of what I was lovin’ in July (and maybe still lovin’ in August! 😉 )

1. Inspiration from the ReFashionista! Did you see that awesome post from BuzzFeed about her?!

I had already heard about the ReFashionista from my dear friend Shanika and have been hoping to run into her around town (she’s from Columbia too!). We haven’t met in person yet, but I’m following her blog like we’re besties.

Promptly after reading the BuzzFeed post, I skipped on over to Facebook and signed up to receive notifications from the ReFashionista’s page.

Best. Decision. Ever.

Now every time she posts, I see the link and become immediately infatuated with the magic she performs on sad, deserted thrift wear. The other day she posted about a seersucker house dress refashion which has since sent me into a tizzy looking for an abandoned house dress.

refashionista

Mind blown. She’s a genius.

And this one! It’s a no sew refashion that involves her tying the sleeves around her waist — I mean, who thinks of this brilliance?! Oh yeah, the ReFashionista.

I think my favorite part about the ReFashionista’s blog is that she includes step-by-step instructions (usually with pictures) of how she performed the refashion. A girl who shares her tricks – now that’s what I love! 🙂

2. Supporting my local thrift store! This is a double whammy.

First, I love a good purge (remember that time I told you about my mission to live small?). I’ve been on a kick this summer of simplifying which apparently means reorganizing my fabric collection a billion times and going through my closet filling donation bags…over and over.

Second, I love dropping donations off at Revente’s Second Chances because the staff is always friendly and they always have the best stock! (AND their sales benefit the local Women’s Shelter! Win. Win. Win.)

Example: I have been riding around with 3 bags in my car that I’d been meaning to donate (aren’t we all guilty of this?!). On my lunch break this week I decided to swing by while I was out and alleviate my back seat. Well – some purple polka dots caught my eye and next thing I know I had found this Boden dress in perfect condition for only $15!

boden

Seriously. How precious is the collar?!

Keep an eye on my Instagram because you know I’ll post a picture when I wear it! 😉

{Confession: I didn’t even try it on because…$15 for a Boden, y’all! I figured I could pull some of my ReFashionista inspiration on it if I have to!}

3. The fact that running for even 5 minutes a day can reduce your risk of heart attack. 

You’re doubting me aren’t you? Check out the very-dreamy Brian William’s clip from NBC Nightly News.

As a Public Health grad, I know that any physical exercise is healthy. BUT our standard was always 30 minutes, 5 days per week. Alas – we can all feel fine with the sub-half-hour gym visit after a long day at work (or is that just me?).

Looking for a quick run? Try this one from my friend Alex at Work Hard Eat Harder:

run

[Click the photo for more details on Work Hard Eat Harder]

 4. Matching handmade bags!

Keep an eye out for a post about my version of Melly Sews’ Favorite Purse (which may also be my favorite purse now!) that I sewed up just in time for Baltimore (also – more to come on that trip!). The cherry on top of this bag: it matches my Noodle Head Super Tote!

favpurse

Doesn’t every gal need a full set of matching bags? Up next: a wallet! 🙂

5. Rediscovering how much I love to read!

The Hubs started a new job a few weeks ago and has to be to work at 6:00am. In addition, I’m working our “summer schedule” at the school district meaning: a 10 hour days that start at 7:00 with Fridays off. I don’t have quite enough time to get by the gym before work like usual so that’s been rescheduled to after work (which makes for a very long day, but I’m not complaining because I rest up on Fridays and sew!). All that said, I’ve been trading morning news for some quiet reading time which has been so delightful.

Even the time the cat came and sat directly on top of the dog's head peace remained.

Even the time the cat came and sat directly on top of the dog’s head peace remained.

I’ve got a few summer books to recommend so keep an eye out for those posts soon!

6. Supporting my favorite non-profit with photos!

My very favorite local non-profit who tirelessly fights for women’s reproductive rights in South Carolina (oh heyyy TellThem!) invited me to participate in their photo-a-day challenge for August via Twitter. I’m always looking for an excuse to post more photos (I’m obsessed with Instagram) so obviously I’m in!

tellthem

I’d love it if you participated with me! You can read more about the challenge on TellThem’s blog, but here are the basics: post a photo that relates to the corresponding day’s theme (ie: August 1st we’ll all post something related to “celebration”), include the hashtag #SCrahrah and tag @TellThemSC in your post (find TellThem on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest).

*AND*

for the grand finale..

7. It’s my sister’s birthday month!!

kt

Words can’t describe my infatuation with my sister. She is EVERYTHING to me and I love love love her so much!

She’s not one for big birthday celebrations, but I’ve got some great crafting planned to make up for the fact that I was out of town for her birthday…again. Keep an eye out for that too – you bet I’ll share some pictures with you!

{Catch up on all What I’m Lovin’ monthly posts here}