One More From Mexico, Wearing Madewell

via Thetique

Madewell Button-Up (similar) | Madewell Pants (on sale!) | Lack of Colour Hat | Photos by Sam Gidley

This post marks the last and final one from my Mexican vacation with the Gidleys. While both the trip itself and this series is coming to a close, I am so incredibly thankful for the memories that were made and the time spent with such incredible individuals. It’s not every day that one is fortunate enough to have a week of sunshine, beaches, and ultimate relaxation. However, it’s even less frequent that one gets to spend time with truly authentic and beautiful human beings. I was fortunate enough to have both.

As we reach the halfway point in 2016, I hope that you too are finding time to see more of life’s treasures and surround yourself with people that make you feel full. There is so much adventure to be had and so many experiences that are waiting for you.

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Meet Me at the Beach, Wearing Tularosa

via Thetique

Tularosa Dress | Lack of Colour Hat | Madewell Sandals (on sale!) | Ray-ban Sunglasses | Photos by Sam Gidley

One of the aspects that I love most about Mexico (and any tropical location for that matter) is the beach. Something about the saltwater, sand, and sunshine makes you feel so alive. It makes you feel a little more like yourself.

We only went into the ocean a few times, but when we did it was always a cleansing experience. The water was the most beautifully intoxicating shade of blue. You could stare at it all day; you could listen to it for even longer. I remember going down to the point where the water breaks and looking out as far as my eyes could see. I took a deep breath and thanked God that places like this existed on Earth. I thanked Him for the opportunity to see them in my lifetime.

In that moment, feet buried in a shallow layer of salt and sand, I knew that I was imprinting a delicate but lasting memory on my mind. One that I would never forget, even if I tried. I took that memory, I bottled it up, and I placed it on my personal shelf of beautiful moments.

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Budget-Friendly Vacation Packing Tips

via Thetique

H&M Swim Top | One Teaspoon Shorts | Old Navy Bag | Lack of Colour Hat | Madewell Sandals (on sale!)
H&M Beach Towel | Ray-ban Sunglasses | Photos by Sam Gidley

It’s no secret that packing for any vacation is tough work as there’s a constant push-and-pull effect when it comes to what you’ll bring along. Most people want their pieces to be fashion-forward yet comfortable, trendy yet practical, and “blogger-approved” but not too costly. Then there’s always those pesky questions that everyone has asked themselves at least once while filling their suitcase: “Am I packing too much?” and/or “Will I have enough to wear?”

I rest my case. Packing kind of sucks. However, there’s always one thing you can do that is sure to check off all of the ticks on your packing to-bring list, and that’s packing cute, but budget-friendly vacation pieces. Recently I’ve found that H&M offers a ton of great original and look-a-like items for vacation. For example, I found this super-cute swim top for only $20, and it looks just like one I had been eyeing from a more expensive brand. They also have a number of great summer essentials that will help make your vacation that much trendier. I scooped up this great beach towel for my recent vacation to Mexico, but I also love their sunglasses and cover-ups!

When packing, I didn’t just look online either! I’d also stop in-store to places like Old Navy and UAL to see what deals and sales they had going on at the time. That’s how I was able to score great pieces like this reversible tote for only $10! The deals are out there. You just have to be patient enough to look for them. And at the end of the day, no matter how many trendy and budget-friendly pieces you score, packing for vacation takes planning. Start the hunt early! That way, you’ll be that much more prepared when the date of your vacation actually rolls around.

What other tips do you guys have for vacation packing? I’d love to hear!

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I Left My Heart in Mexico, Wearing Free People

via Thetique

Free People Dress | Lack of Color Hat | Madewell Sandals | Ray-Ban Sunglasses | Photos by Sam Gidley

Ever since I returned from Mexico, I’ve been completely and inexplicably inspired. I don’t know if it’s the fact that I had plenty of time for reflection, or if I simply caught that bit of nostalgia and self-invention that so often comes with traveling. Either way, I’ve found myself longing for beautiful stories, uncharted territory, and self-development.

It’s crazy what a small amount of exploration can do to you. Seeing the world – immersing yourself in something so different than what you already know – grants you the gift of perspective. You discover new places. You watch other people’s lives unfold in a different part of the world. And I don’t know about you, but I can’t help but marvel at the fact that these lives have been moving all along, continuing to fill with memories and joy and heartbreak, all the while mine has been doing the exact same thing in a part of the world that they may know nothing about either. It shows you just how little your life and your routine and your individual bubble allows you to see.

So in my attempt to readjust to my schedule, I’ve been trying to incorporate more of that newfound perspective into everyday life. I’m beginning to realize that the things I once put so much stress and emphasis on maybe aren’t as important as they always seemed. I’m trying to live with less, but become inspired by more. I’m trying to be a better person overall. All the while, I can’t help but begin to plan my next adventure. I think this kind of clarity can be a good for a person. Don’t you?

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Back in Action | Wearing Free People

Free People Perfectly Victoria Dress via Thetique

Free People Dress | J.Crew Factory Jacket (different wash) | Madewell Sandals | Madewell Bag (similar)

I apologize for the delay and lack in posting, but I just got back from a week-long vacation in sunny Cancun. I had such an incredible time and was lucky enough to get to spend it with Sam’s family! They truly are the best. Now that I’m back, however, I’m looking forward to sharing all the wonderful shots that I got (well, that Sam got) while away.

Not only have I returned, but one of my favorite dresses from Free People is back as well! Whenever I wear this dress, I get asked multiple times where I got it from. So for all of you that asked me or are curious, look no further! Free People recently restocked it in the cream, and it’s also offered in blue and black. It’s the perfect summer dress to throw on for an effortless look!

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