trend watch: mules

I shouldn’t categorize this as a trend watch because it’s really just my personal preference. I am grabbing a pair of mules basically everyday lately and I see no sign of stopping! Such a convenient choice that usually goes with just about anything. Dressed up or down, but my favorite with a pair of jeans. Here’s a bunch in all price ranges! 

1: A fresh take/shape in a bunch of colors! // I am a sucker for anything tomato red. // Pearl + velvet, hitting all the fall trends!

2: Perforated is so amazing for Spring and these are FRYE and on super sale. Grab for next year! // Maybe its all the Poldark I’ve been watching but these bow mules are so killer. // I always prefer a flat for this style but this mixed suede and patent is amazing.

3: Tassel loafers, so classic and these come in like 10 colors. // Lots of patent options in the same style as those Madewell faves that sold out.

4: Studded in nude (so cheap too!) // My friend has these and they’re SO pretty on. You can use that heel cap or step right on it!

5: Another perforated! Remember this post? So many of you dug the shoes (for good reason) these look pretty similar! // All leather options looking might close to Madewell.

6: Get you a pair of silver block heel booties. I don’t even care if their mules, but bonus for these!

And my latest score c/o Poppy and Dot! Sweater (similar) // Skirt // Lip is Tulle by Colour Pop 



wash out the work-out!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Febreze In-Wash Odor Eliminator. All opinions are 100% mine.

If you have to pick one smell you can’t seem to shake in your house what would it be? I have three. 1. Welding residue. When Russ welds he comes home with the grease from the metal and the smell of those tiny shards all over him. It might be my least favorite smell and it’s SO hard to get out of his clothes! 2. My hot yoga towel/mat. Russ and I both use it (time to buy him his own) and it’s got some stank on it! 3. This one isn’t a laundry thing but at what point to boys learn to clean up after themselves and their pee situation?? I have a husband so I don’t even really need to ask. What is never, Alex?Wash Out the Work OutFebreze ensured me they could rid at least my first two odor issues and I was ready for something to work, so I gave it a whirl for today’s post! Typically when I wash the hot yoga towel it smells fine until I work out and then I realize it’s not fine, so the true test was taking it to a class. Verdict – Totally works. You just measure the amount needed for the odor and add it right into the wash, it works on high efficiency washers as well! Wash Out the Work Out I am super pleased! Instead of trying to get a pic at class here we are doing yoga in the yard. Super casual, and yes Russ is better than me. We’re SO zen, right?Wash Out the Work OutThe Odor eliminator is said to work to eliminate sweat/perspiration, smoke, stinky pet smells, but is also great to remove odors such as cooking oil, grease, motor oil, pets, garden soil and mildew from virtually any washable fabric. I wish I had this when I was a waitress for two weeks at Wingers. Another story for another time.

But in summary it works great, and I suppose I should be grateful that I have all of these issues in my life! I am   especially grateful for the hot yoga towel. First because it is so good for my anxiety, it’s such a cleansing exercise. And I love that Russ loves it too, because the busier he gets the less he takes any time for himself and hot yoga is one of the rare things he will make time for. Hot Yoga is something I don’t do as much as I once did but it was vital in my post-partum weight loss.Wash Out the Work Out

The third time around the baby weight was so hard for me to get off! It was a mixture of Raleigh weaning early, trying to find the time with my three busy kids, and sheer unmotivation. But it did finally come off and I found a system that worked for me! I get questions about it every now and then so I’ll answer them all here.



I work out between 4 and 6 times a week. This is shocking to even me. 4 times a week would normally be my absolute best, and now it is the norm. Why? You might not like the answer, but it’s 6 am workouts. I personally don’t do day care, mostly because I can’t focus like I’d like. I am checking the door and anticipating that there will be a problem and I can’t concentrate. I worry about germs and bully kids and I’d just rather have that hour truly to myself. So, it was usually night time workouts, which were constantly being thrown off by Russ’ work schedule, the boys’ after school activities, dinners and fun things with friends. When push comes to shove the work-out was the first to go in these situations.

Morning it is! I have loved it. Being able to get ready and get into the flow of my day, and taking advantage of the endorphins during my waking hours. And then of course every successful person I’ve read about or studied works out in the morning, so why not join the ranks?


Classes! I am a class girl through and through. I ALWAYS get a killer work out, I don’t waste any time trying to figure out what I am going to do and I love the variety! Typically I try to do more cardio than weights with High Fitness (all-time favorite), an Insanity class, HIIT class, and then a “Pump” weights class on the off days. Every week or so I drop a day and pick up a yoga class to make sure I get good stretches in and re-center. I don’t love yoga but I know I need it. Russ LOVES it. He does it more than anything else, he also plays basketball with friends, and runs too.


I go to local cheap-o gym, Vasa. I know there is a stigma attached. The women are in full make-up, the men are walking around picking up a weight every 5 minutes, it’s a meat market, etc. etc. That is not my experience! 6 am is filled the brim with women and men who are there to sweat, and that is all. I don’t really socialize except with other women in the class (and my brother, woot woot @collinkartchner) and then I walk my red, sweaty self out of there.


I have learned to be proud of my red, sweaty self. I know I did my body right. I pushed myself, my mind, and my body always loves me for it. The surge of endorphins, that happy high. Even if I didn’t see results I would still do it, it’s everything for my mental health!

If you have any other questions I didn’t cover, let me know!




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rockstar family costume

Photos by Heather Mildenstein.

A bunch of you asked for shopping links to our family costume reveal from yesterday! Here you go m’ladies. Rockstar Family Costume

Bob Dylan – Suit c/o Appaman // Button down // Wayfarers // Harmonica Holder Set // Shoes // Hair was done in pincurls like this!

Bob Dylan Costume

Angus Young of ACDC. Suit c/o Appaman // Russ’ tie for fatness // Shoes c/o Florsheim //  Riding Cap // Guitar c/o LoogAngus Young Costume

Baby Freddie Mercury of Queen. Henley Jumper // Shoes // Mustache and Hair Spray

Freddie Mercury BabyStevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac! Top Hat // Kimono // Platform Boots // Tambourine (go for a bigger size if you order, this one is mini!) // Extensions // Lip

Stevie Nicks Costume

Water Activated Face Paint! Doesn’t much matter what you wear on bottom when you have this iconic of a face!

And a few more photos that kill me dead.Freddie Mercury Baby Costume Kid rockstar costumes Kid Rock Star CostumesHappy Halloween everyone