Over the last month or two, I’ve been spending a lot of my time not in NYC. #JetSetJess has had her pedal to the metal… And it’s been so much fun! I’m finally back in New York for a bit… 11 days… before I head home to Illinois for Mother’s Day. (I’m going to be home for about a week and I could not be more excited! I don’t really know why, but I’ve been pretty homesick lately and I’m more than ready to go home and do absolutely NOTHING. Except blog, of course.)
Since I’ve been gone so much lately, and have a lot of upcoming travel, too, I’ve been making it a point to get the most out of New York while I’m in town! (I’m currently working on another spring/summer bucket list for the year — stay tuned!)
With spring seemingly waiting right around the corner, I’ve had dresses on the mind. I’m ready to ditch my heavier separates and start my seasonal sporting of dresses all day, everyday. And with the Kentucky Derby next weekend, it’s the perfect excuse to break out a new dress!
Having always been drawn to the south in ways of the weather, style, people, and way of life, South Carolina felt like a dream. Hilton Head Island was the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city! I kept wanting to describe it as a “sleepy little town,” but I feel like that has a bad connotation to it, and I definitely don’t mean it in a bad way — I mean it in the best way possible. Everything just felt so relaxed!
We stayed in a gorgeous six-bedroom home right on the beach. To grab a bite for lunch or to do some afternoon shopping, we were able to ride our bikes everywhere we wanted to go. Instead of your over-crowded NYC bike lanes in the concrete jungle, Hilton Head had mellow paths surrounded by lush greenery, covered overhead with Spanish moss. Exploring the island by bike was easily one of my favorite parts of the trip! It was so unbelievably therapeutic… Hallie and I ended up biking 14 miles on Saturday without even realizing it.
I spent this past weekend on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina with some of my girlfriends and we had the best time! When Hallie and I boarded the plane from NYC on Thursday, I had no idea that we would be touching down in paradise a quick two hours later. Of course, I knew where we were headed, but it was my first time ever going to Hilton Head. After this past weekend, I know it definitely won’t be my last trip!
If you’re bummed that you missed out on Lilly for Target, I’ve got a little something to cheer you up — Kate Spade Friends & Family sale is still going strong! If you missed the news this morning, most stores sold out of their Lilly for Target inventory within 15 minutes after doors opened at 8am. The Target.com selection was sold out by the time I woke up at 7am. (It launched sometime around 2am.) Madness!
So take the money you were planning to spend on discounted Lilly goods and put it towards a discounted Kate Spade purchase… At least, that’s what I’m going to do. Hurry, though, just a few more hours to shop — the 25% off promotion ends tonight at 11:59pm (Pacific Time). Use code DEAREST!
Mother’s Day, Graduations, and Wedding Season are all right around the corner!
Click through the slideshow to see some of my wish-listed items, and click the picture to go directly to that product page!
Getting back into your routine after a vacation can be hard… Like, really hard. Especially when you were gone for 10 days in Europe eating every single croissant and crepe in sight on the streets of Paris. Yikes!
I’m not one to practice that much self-control when I’m on vacation. One of the reasons I’ve learned to love working out is because I love eating. And especially when I’m on vacation, I’m not going to deprive myself of trying new things because of the calorie count. Sure, I probably didn’t need to have a crepe-a-day while in Paris, but whatever — everything in moderation, including moderation. Right?! Right.
Sharing a few lot of photos from my afternoon exploring the Notting Hill neighborhood in London! Flowers just starting to bloom and the prettiest pastel town houses made for some Pinterest-worthy photos. Enjoy!
I’m going to be totally honest with you guys… I feel like I need a re-do with my London trip. Before I went to London, I felt like ev-er-y-one told me OMG YOU’RE GOING TO LOVE IT. And I believed them! I truly thought I was going to love London. But each day, I kept feeling guilty for not loving it. So, so guilty. I kept thinking.. “What am I doing wrong?! Everyone loves it here! Why don’t I?!” There were a variety of not-so-pleasant, behind-the-scenes factors that went into it, but I really didn’t like my time there. I’ll save those travel lessons for another day, but rest assured, they are coming.
Hands down, my favorite way to explore a city is by walking around and immersing myself in the culture. London has landed on just about every “Walkable Cities” list, but I only walked around about 1.5 of the 4 days we were there. It was raining most of the trip so there were a lot of taxis and Ubers taken instead. Of course, there were so many things that I loved seeing and enjoyed experiencing, but I genuinely feel like I need another trip there to take on the city in a different way. When I’m traveling, I really enjoy immersing myself into the culture, food, people, and language. To me, that’s the whole point of traveling — to see how other people do things and gain a new perspective. I don’t feel like I did that this trip… I feel like we were just trucking along, checking boxes off of a list without actually experiencing it. Does that make sense?
For those of you that may be planning a trip in the future, I’m going to share what I loved, what I didn’t really love, and what I would have done differently. Hopefully I made the mistakes so you won’t have to… Taking one for the team, here. 😉
Things I Loved in London
Elizabeth Tower / Big Ben — Big Ben is iconic and so photogenic! (Big Ben is actually just the name of the bell, the tower is called Elizabeth Tower, but it seems like everyone refers to the entire thing as Big Ben.) We went to see/hear Big Ben during the day and also at night for a totally different view. Both were great! You can see the London Eye right across the river, and Westminster Abbey is just across the road, too.
Interrupting my travel posts for a little bit of sale news: The Shopbop Friends & Family Sale is happening now! 25% off today, Wednesday, and Thursday with code SPRING25! This only happens a few times a year so it’s a great time to scoop up some new spring staples or timeless classics you’ve had your eye on!
Some of my favorite things are below… Just click the picture to shop directly!