Northwest Native: April 2015

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Help me I'm poor.

That's one of my favorite lines in Bridesmaids. I relate to it too much. We live in the heart of Seattle. We're about a 20-minute walk from downtown (including the flagship Nordstrom store--swoon), a few blocks from Pike Place Market, and just two blocks up from the waterfront. It's a great location, but it comes with a hefty price tag. We're in our second year here, and we're going to have to move somewhere cheaper after our lease is up in the fall, so I'm trying to soak up this time while I can!

Anyway, hefty rent plus two dogs and normal living expenses means I can't just buy whatever I want. I know it looks like I can based on my post yesterday, but those purchases were made over the course of a month or so, and I also had employed my new budget strategy. (Full disclosure: the Kate Spade bag and the two pairs of shoes were purchased before my budget was in place.)

I recently started selling clothes that I don't wear anymore or that don't fit me on Poshmark. I also put myself on a shopping ban after buying the Kate Spade. Listen...the shopping ban did not make me want to shop less. It just made me stress out about all the things I wanted that were going to pass me by! Then I decided, shouldn't my earnings from depleting my closet go to building it back up again?

So far, I've made enough selling my old clothes to buy six items of clothing, and I still have some money left to spend and some items left to sell. Has anyone else sold anything on Poshmark? It's so easy, I love it! Do you have a budgeting strategy? I didn't have one before, but there's no way I can sustain this Poshmark budget forever--or a shopping ban, as my last attempt proved--so I think after that's gone I'll try and calculate a monthly dollar amount I'm okay with spending and stick to it.

Aside from budgeting, I'm also always looking for a good deal. At Target or Old Navy, for example, I know they always have rotating deals, so I try to wait until one that I can use to my advantage comes up.

I'm linking up with Franish's Budgeting Bloggers!

And lastly, in honor of tomorrow being the first day of May...


...I had to!

-Mattie

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Christmas in April

If you read my previous post, you know that I was in Oregon visiting my parents over the weekend.

In case you didn't know, Oregon doesn't have sales tax. I grew up with the mentality that the price on the tag is the price you pay. Getting my Washington driver's license was a tough day for me...no more taking sales tax off at the store.

So anyway, when I order clothes online (much more frequently than buying in store) and I know I'm going to my parents' soon...I just go ahead and ship them there. (Please don't tell the IRS or the FBI or whoever would come get me for that.)

This weekend was an amazing haul. I had six packages waiting for me. SIX! With seven fabulous items for me, and one for Michael.

This is probably the purchase I was most excited about. It's the first Kate Spade purse I've owned and only my second designer bag (the first being from the Coach outlet). I bought it on the Kate Spade site here. It was over $100 off the original price and I couldn't resist. They only have it in black now, but I think Nordstrom might have it in a tan color too. (For some reason at the time I bought it Nordstrom wasn't price-matching the reduced price, or I would've bought it there and earned points!)

Oh these shoes. I bought the leopard print ones last year, and as soon as I saw these a few months ago I knew I had to have them. I wear my leopard ones year round and I've only seen normal wear and tear (the rubber soles on any brand of these type of shoes will wear down with time). Apparently this pattern is now sold out, but all other colors and patterns are here. They're super comfy and versatile--I've worn my leopard ones with dresses, jeans, and shorts--and so cheap! You can't buy Keds at that price.

I was nervous about these shoes. I wasn't sure if I could pull them off and I didn't know if they'd fit right--I thought the 'footbed' might not fit my foot shape or something. But let me tell you, they are comfy. These are now the comfiest sandals I own. My mom and Michael were skeptical about them when I tried them on (in the dress I wore to work that I would NEVER wear with these) but when I said I was most excited to wear them with my white jeans and white shorts they changed their tune. (Fun fact: I first saw these on Fancy Ashley's Instagram, so I have her to thank!)

I was in love with this dress when I first laid eyes on it! Then, it started getting ridiculous. I saw a girl wearing it in Nordstrom, I saw it on a blogger's Instagram (don't remember who), and then I saw Penny Pincher Fashion (whose blog I had never read before) wearing it on Pinterest! I finally tried it on and loved the fit, then I saw it was on sale for $17 in this color plus a 30% off code and I jumped on it!

The colors of this dress on the Nordstrom site is not true to color at all! Online it looks pastel, but the colors are definitely bright, like the above picture shows. I tried this on in store, so I knew before ordering. I'm a little sad that it's on sale now and wasn't when I bought it (I think it's been too long to call for a price adjustment) but I did use a gift card and only ended up paying $13 after that, so I can't complain too much.

I love this maxi skirt! I love that the maxi part is sheer and the lining is shorter, and I also love the rounded hem and slits on the sides!

This dress is so fun! I'm excited to dress it up and down!

So those are my exciting purchases! Maybe some day I'll be like a real fashion blogger and have some outfit posts instead of taking pictures of the clothes just sitting on a table. Maybe.

After all these dresses and skirts I think it's time to focus on shorts (and I'd love to add a good romper/jumpsuit to my closet)!

Linking up with ShaefferShay, and Mel for What's Up Wednesday! I already had this post planned out, so I'm only answering the one question: what I'm wearing (at least I will be once the weather cooperates!).


-Mattie

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Hometown Weekend

I spent the weekend at my parents' house in Oregon. It was much needed, I hadn't spent real time with them since January, maybe before!

My employer is kind enough to offer flex schedules to their employees, so I worked four ten-hour days (6:30-5:30...I know, crazy right? I'd much rather get to work earlier than leave later--I normally work 8-5) and we drove the 138 miles home on Thursday night. We drank prosecco and ate homemade nachos upon our arrival--it was perfect.

On Friday, we headed to Portland for lunch. My parents, Michael, and I met up with my best friend for lunch at Por qué no? It was good! But I have to say, the best carnitas I've ever had were made in my own kitchen by Michael (but maybe I'm biased). We also went to Beaverton Bakery and oh my word at the deliciousness! I got a peanut butter brownie that unfortunately took me forever to eat because I had to pick out all of the unwelcome walnuts. But even with that extra work, it was well worth it! They also had a bunch of samples out, which was amazing. My mom bought a loaf of cinnamon bread that I can't wait to devour for breakfast with coffee. And look at how adorable their sugar cookies are!
The umbrellas were appropriate for the day's weather.
This cookie was huge. Like the size of my face! It was hanging over the counter.
Lastly, I'm kind of a crazy bird lady--I even think pigeons are cute, which my entire family judges me for--as well as a die-hard Portlandia fan ("Put a bird on it!") so these were a favorite.

That night we went to dinner with my step-sister and her boyfriend. We watched The Judge when we got home which I had been wanting to see, and I really liked it!

Saturday was a looong day of errands. We started at Ulta, headed to Michael's for wedding crafting purposes, went to Ross and got Starbucks...then we went to Joann's and the dollar store (more wedding stuff!), Target so I could make a return--and of course, shop--then headed to a local home furnishing and decor store and stopped at the pharmacy on the way back.

I was looking for my favorite dry shampoo at Ulta by Not Your Mother's, but they were out. The lady pointed me to Batiste, which is their best seller (and I've heard good things) so I'm hoping that works out!

The most interesting part of the day was at Target. We walk in and are immediately greeted by this:
Say what?! I thought all the Lilly for Target sold out in all locations, not just women's clothes (yes, sadly, all those clothes are for little girls). I loved the pineapple serving bowl, but unfortunately couldn't justify purchasing it because we have no room in our tiny apartment kitchen. The side of the display had cute Lilly scarves and my mom picked one up.

After we got home we did some wedding crafting! We purchased some wooden letters at Target a few weeks ago, so we bought spray paint to paint them gold. We ended up finding something at Michael's that would make a good chalkboard for the drink menu, so we bought that along with some chalkboard paint to make that too.

We went to dinner Saturday night with my brother and father and got home just in time to watch the Blazers continue their playoff losing streak.  :(

Sunday was just relaxing before making the drive home. It was a really great weekend! I hope everyone else's weekend was great too. :)

Linking up with Jessica and Katie at Sweet Little Ones for Tuesday Talk!

-Mattie

Monday, April 27, 2015

So you started a blog...now what?

The title of this post accurately sums up my thoughts right about now. I've wanted to start a blog for a few months, ever since I started really getting into reading blogs. I have five that I read daily (every day that they post, I should say) and then sometimes I'll randomly read some other blogs (and if I like it, it becomes a full-time read). I thought it would be so much fun to blog, but I didn't think I'd have much to write about.

I did have a blog once before...for about six months. That blog had a strict purpose and vision. I studied abroad in Australia for a semester, so it was a way to update friends and family back home. I actually recently read back through some of the posts, and I think the more important purpose it serves is to help me remember everything! There were so many details I would have forgotten if I hadn't kept that blog.

This blog might be tougher for me. I plan on sharing a little bit of everything: experiences and thoughts I've had, snippets of my life, what I'm doing/reading/watching/buying, and anything else I can come up with.

I don't expect a lot of readers, but even if zero people read this, it'll be nice to have a creative outlet! I'll try not to bore you. :)

-Mattie