Friday, November 30, 2018

Nashville Holiday Events Guide


Our friend @thenashvillemom has a wonderful holiday guide we thought you guys would enjoy.  She loves connecting with other moms and highlighting the best of Nashville.  Give her a follow for all things happening in Nashville with kids in tow.


One of my favorite holiday events!!

  • When: November 17th (Members) through December 30th (Closed on Christmas Day) Timed-ticketed event
  • Where: Cheekwood Botanical Gardens
  • What: Over one million lights, real reindeer, meet Santa , Have Breakfast with Santa (for members only), Carolers, S’mores Pits, and so much fun! They also have Gingerbread Workshops on Dec. 1 and 15
  • When: November 9th thru January 1, 2019
  • Where: Opryland Hotel
  • What: Three million twinkling lights, festive decor and beautiful sights! Other events on the property include ICE featuring How The Grinch Stole Christmas. Soundwaves, an indoor water park opens December 1st! (Admission to the water amenities is only guaranteed to overnight guests)
  • When: Friday, November 30th at 6 p.m.
  • Where: Downtown Franklin Square
  • What: Live music and performances, an appearance from Santa and lighting of the tree
  • When: Friday, November 30th at 6 p.m.
  • Where: Public Square Park, Nashville
  • What: Join Mayor David Briley for the 2018 Metro Christmas Tree Lighting on Public Square. This family friendly event includes a performance by the Fisk Jubilee Singers, the Lake Providence Missionary Baptist Church Choir, the Nashville Classical Pop Choir, and the Isaiah T. Creswell Middle School of the Arts Choir. Food trucks will be on site. Please bring a new, unwrapped toy (for children ages newborn to eighteen) to donate to the Last Minute Toy Store. The event will feature a live broadcast from Mix 92.9, along with appearances by Santa, Gnash, T-Rac and Booster. Nissan Parking Lots E and F will be available for FREE parking starting at 4 p.m.
  • When: Friday, November 30th from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Where: The Barn at Green Door Gourmet
  • What: Come craft a beautiful wreath for the holidays!
  • When: November 28th through December 23rd
  • Where: The Ryman Auditorium
  • What: Join Amy Grant and Vince Gill at the Mother Church for this annual Christmas concert tradition.
  • When: December 1st, December 8th and December 15th from 9:15 a.m. to 10 a.m.
  • Where: Franklin Visitor’s Center
  • What: The Visitor’s Center will welcome many special guests to read to children throughout the first few Saturdays in December. Santa will be there on December 1st, The Conductor from The Polar Express on the 8th, and Buddy the Elf on December 15th. These guests also coordinate with the holiday movie that will be playing at The Franklin Theater at 10 a.m. right after story time.
  • When: December 8-9
  • Where: Historic Downtown Franklin
  • What: The largest outdoor Christmas festival in Middle Tennessee! Step back in time with over 200 musicians, dancers and characters will fill the streets. Craft and food vendors will also be on site.
  • When: Tuesday, December 11th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Where: Green Door Gourmet
  • What: Learn how to make, bake and decorate your own festive Pfefferkuchen-the classic German recipe for gingerbread!
  • When: December 1st through December 23rd
  • Where: Tennessee Performing Arts Center
  • What: Celebrate this magical production of the Nutcracker, this show will put you in the ultimate holiday spirit
The Symphony has a calendar full of holiday events, here are a few that you may be interested in
  • The Grinch Christmas Sing-Along
  • Home Alone in Concert with the Nashville Symphony
  • A Very Merry Christmas with Dave Barnes and Special Guests
  • A Neighborly Christmas with Drew and Ellie Holcomb
  • When: Throughout November and December
  • Where: The Franklin Theater
  • What: The Franklin Theater will be showing classic movies like A White Christmas, The Christmas Story, Elf, Polar Express, The Grinch Stole Christmas and more! Tickets are only $5!
  • When: Through December 3rd
  • Where: Nashville Children’s Theater
  • A musical tale that will make you believe in the power of ingenuity and determination
  • When: November 22nd through December 29th
  • Where: Williamson County AG Expo Center
  • What: Beginning Thanksgiving night, FrankTown Open Hearts, a local nonprofit in Franklin, will host a drive-through holiday lights experience with synchronized music that stretches for a mile at the Williamson County AG Expo Center. $25 per car
  • When: November 17- Dec. 31st
  • Where: James Ward Agricultural Center (945 E. Baddour Parkway, Lebanon)
  • What: The Dancing Lights of Christmas returns for it’s 8th consecutive season. Light displays, Christmas tunes and Santa’s village.
 Thank you Nashville Mom!  We hope everyone has a wonderful and fun holiday season!
Crystal & Amanda

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Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Gift Guide for Him

Is it just me or are guys hard to shop for?? I struggle every year shopping for my hubby and my dad.  So I did some research this year and polled my guys to to help everyone out including myself!

This gift guide is hubby/dad approved!


Click on the links below the collage to shop

Some highlights:
Cole Haan Water Resistant Wingtip Shoes:  These shoes give a sporty vibe with a cool design.  They also come in black and Cole Haan prides itself on comfortability of their shoes!  Your man will love the fact that they are water resistant as well.

Shoe Deodorizer Balls:  These make for a great stocking stuffer or gag gift!  But let's be real all the men in our life could use these to freshen up their sneakers, gym bags, or lockers.  You simply twist to activate and the smell can last up to 6 months!

Bose Micro Bluetooth Speaker:  This speaker might look small but the sound is mighty!  We have one of these and love to travel with it.  This speaker is completely waterproof which makes it safe to have at the pool or beach.  It also comes in black but I love the orange color!

Car Vent Phone Mount:  This is high on my hubby's wish list (and mine too!)  We spend so much time in our car and this will secure your smartphone safely to your air vent.  This will help when using Navigation (my fave is Waze!) by being located at eye level.  


Happy Shopping!
XOXO,
Amanda

Click below for more gift ideas for him!





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Sunday, November 25, 2018

Cyber Monday is here!

Cyber Monday is in full swing! Paying full price for items is so fun said no one ever!  I rounded up some of my fave retailers and their sale info. 
This is what I was doing on Black Friday so I'm grateful to have today to shop! My entire look is marked down:  Fleece Pullover (35% off) / High Rise Shiny Leggings (25% off) / Crew Neck Sweatshirt (Buy 1 get 60% off plus an additional 15% off) / Quay sunglasses (30% off) / Nike Black Sneakers (40% off)  

This blanket scarf makes for great gifts ( and it's 50% off + comes in 9 other colors) / Fave black jeans (25% off) / Adidas sneakers ($10 off)



Scroll down to check out my fave sales!  Also don't forget to check out Crystal's blog post on activewear deals.

XOXO,
Amanda

TARGET
Get 15% off everything today (no code needed).  Also you get an additional buy one get 60% off clothing, shoes, accessories (co code needed as well).

This leopard print faux fur jacket is on trend + under $50





J. CREW
Get 50% off your entire purchase today with the code: CYBER
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How adorable are these Nordic wedge boots for winter?!



RACHEL PARCELL
She is one of my fave bloggers of all time and has an amazing curated clothing collection.  She is having a huge sale with up to 70% off- no code required.  You can also get free shipping on orders over $150 with the code: FREESHIP

This cozy + pink faux fur jacket is on sale for under $40!



NORDSTROM
They are having a huge sale with up to 60% off some hot ticket items. This is my fave sale to shop from hands down!  There is no promo code and as always you get free shipping and free returns.  They also just added this deal:  On Cyber Monday, spend $250 online and in stores, get a $50 promotional e-certificate to spend online and in stores January 11-February 2.

One of my fave jackets: so classic + versatile




MANGO
30% off everything with the promo code: CYBER18
This striped sweater has been on major repeat!



MADEWELL
Get 25% off everything with the code: SHOPALLDAY 
Tall 9" High-Rise Skinny Jeans in Black Sea in black sea image 1
The best black jeans I own!



OLD NAVY
Get 50% off your entire purchase (no code required) + free cozy socks with any order using the promo code: COZY
I love this shirt in red- perfect for holiday dressing!




H&M
Get 30% off everything + free shipping all day today (no promo code needed)

This fur-lined parka is one of my fave coats!




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Friday, November 23, 2018

Get your Workout on- Black Friday Activewear Deals

Some of our fave brands are having huge sales that include some tops and leggings that I wear on repeat.  I love having time off for Thanksgiving to spend time with family.  I always go to a class and am sure to get a good workout in before the feasting begins.  Lots of gyms around towns have classes, usually just with a modified schedule.

A few of my fave classes around town have options for Black Friday:

Core Power Yoga (Brentwood) 10:00 AM Yoga Sculpt (special class)
Barry's Bootcamp:  classes all day Friday 
Sculpt House:  8:30 & 9:45.
Shed Belle Meade: 6AM-9:30AM

If you are too busy shopping and don't have time for the gym try this quick Turkey Burner Workout:

30 Kettle Bell Swings (Or just use a normal weight)
30 Squat to Shoulder Presses
30 Mountain Climbers
30 Alternating lunges staying low
30 Shoulder taps in plank position

I will be teaching my Sunday 11:30 Yoga Sculpt class at Core Power Brentwood, so come burn off all those calories with me!


ALO YOGA
My favorite leggings are marked down to $88!  No code needed.  I wear them to Yoga, and all of my other cross training classes.  I tend to size up in Alo's pants, they run small for me.


CARBON38
Use code INDULGE30 for 30% off!!!  You can also use code CRYSTALJAR50 for an additional 20% off your purchase of $100 or more.  I love the Atomic Tank, I have it in a few colors.  I have it in a small and extra small.  I feel like the small gives me a little more length. This tank is so light + comfy.


I also have the Rally Tank in a few colors.  I love the tie in the back and how lightweight it is.  This runs TTS. It goes great with some of my favorite Carbon38 pants: Takara Leggings  & High Waist Motto Leggings.


NIKE
The Nike Free RN Flyknits I just posted about are on major sale!  Seriously the lightest shoe I have ever worn that is perfect for cross-training.


Happy Shopping everyone!

Crystal 


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Monday, November 19, 2018

Gift Guide for her

It's that time of year again (I swear every year the holidays approach more rapidly than ever)!  I always like to roll out the 1st gift guide specifically for the ladies.  There are so many amazing women that I want to celebrate this time of year ranging from my mother to my friends.  I also get the most requests for gift guides on ideas that are for you to pass along to your significant other!  Most guys (including my hubby) can use a little help now and then.  So feel free to pass along or better yet shop for yourself!

Click on the links below the collage to shop!

Some of my faves!
Camel City CoatThis is such a classic + beautiful design which is why it remains a best-seller.  I'm in love with the camel color but it comes 7 other colors as well!  This is currently on sale for $98 which is a steal over it's regular price at $178.  It runs a little large so I would advise to size down!

Tan Over The Knee Boots:  These suede boots are the perfect color and go with absolutely everything.  The over the knee trend is not going away anytime soon so I would scoop them up now!  

Double Hoop Drops:  Hoop earrings are having a major moment and every gal needs a good pair.  I love this dressed up version that adds just a little extra.  The under $35 price tag makes for a great gift idea on a budget.  

Gray Pajamas:  These light + cozy pajamas have a beautiful lace detail on the side.  These are the kind of pajamas that you can throw on sneakers with and run errands!

Click below for more gift ideas for her!


As always, please let me know if you need help with your gifting this season!  I love to get feedback regarding what kind of gift guides you need.

Happy shopping!
XOXO,
Amanda
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Thursday, November 15, 2018

NYC Recap + Instagram Round Up

Once a year I go on a trip with my girlfriends to The Big Apple.  It's one of my fave places to get away + shop til your drop + and soak up city life.  I'm sharing some of my looks I wore (can't get enough of black on black) and some of my fave spots in the city.


I wore this look during the day which is based solely on comfort.  You walk so much in NYC that during the day I always opt for a low heeled bootie or sneakers and these fit the bill.  I always have loved a classic wool funnel neck coat.  This particular coat is old but I found a similar one here and here.  I also love this twist on the coat in a tweed version with leather details.  

This pic was snapped in front of the fountain outside the famous Plaza Hotel.  If you've never been to NYC this is a def must-see (at least just to see where Macaulay Culkin stayed in Home Alone 2) :)

Rockefeller Center with proof of our shopping with allll the bags!
Leopard Shirt / Black Skinny Jeans / Black Knot Earrings / Chain Mini Bag / Open-Toe Bootie

I wore this look to a late dinner on our first night of the trip to The Polo Bar which was beyond fab!  We even sat next to the actress Diane Lane- celebs are known to frequent this restaurant.  Leopard clothing is all the rage and this blouse is a steal at under $25.  I also had to wear my fave open toe booties with a deep V - they always add interest to any outfit. 


I wore this black-on-black look to dinner on our second night.  We went to a beautiful restaurant called Park Avenue Autumn- where the menu and decor drastically changes each season.  These faux leather pants have been a staple in my closet because I love the additional coverage these give you over a legging.  And it doesn't hurt that these look like real leather and are under $100!  Repeated my fave open-toe booties again this night because I didn't want to over pack too many shoes.
We found a dive bar after dinner with a great DJ and had a blast!


I wore this look on our third + final night and again stuck with my black and camel theme. I find that when going on a weekend trip it's just easier to bring pieces you can mix and match. Plus let's be real: neutrals are what I wear anyways! We went to a cozy + French restaurant called Le Bilboquet ( the Cajun chicken is to die for!) It was perfect for our last night and then we headed to our fave midtown rooftop bar Salon de Ning which is at the Peninsula Hotel for after-dinner drinks. If you follow me on Instagram stories then you probably saw that I fell and broke my right wrist. Well, that happened when we got back to the hotel this last night after I fell off a bench at the foot of the bed. That's a whole post in of itself- ha!

Fave Places in NYC to go on a Girls Trip

The window displays are truly magical this time of year!  

Brunch + Bubbles:
Balthazar - a true NYC staple located in SoHo, has the best eggs Benedict, perf for fueling up before hitting allllll the stores in SoHo

BG Restaurant - located on the 7th floor of Bergdorf Goodman with gorgeous views of Central Park, try their lobster mac + chicken salad sandwich with truffle oil

Freemans - rustic + quaint restaurant hidden down an alley on the Lower East Side

Two Hands - They have 2 locations in the city, simple but delicious food with amazing coffee

Brunching at the always amazing Balthazar!

The decor at BG Restaurant is one of my faves!

Shop Til You Drop:
SoHo - this is a mecca for shopping with literally over 300 stores.  It is known to be one of the world's largest outdoor malls.  Some of my faves are: Aritzia, Mango, Splendid, Top Shop, and The Real Real

Midtown - You can't beat all the luxury stores along Fifth Avenue and Madison Avenue.  The window displays alone are worth the stroll.  Bergdorf Goodman is simply a must!


Shopping at my fave store- Mango / Striped Sweater / Ripped Skinny Jeans / Ankle Boots

Dinner at It's Finest:
Beauty and Essex - I've been here 4 times and it simply never gets old!  They serve champagne in the bathroom and the sharable plates make it a perfect atmosphere for a girls dinner.  Head upstairs to the club after dinner to get your dance on.

Carbone - This Italian restaurant inspired by The Godfather gives off a hipster chic 1950's vibe.

Buddakhan - The decor is truly amazing with even better pan-Asian fare.  They filmed an iconic episode of Sex and City here.

ABC Kitchen - This is a beautiful and elegant setting with amazing seafood

Vandal - This restaurant / nightclub has amazing + funky decor celebrating global culture

This is just a short + sweet list of some of my top faves.  There are many many more! Comment below and let me know some of your faves.  There is just never enough time to hit up all the places but you have to leave something to come back for!

XOXO,
Amanda 

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Monday, November 12, 2018

What’s for Breakfast??


Some say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I’m not sure about all that, but I do know I am not one who can skip breakfast. I need something on my stomach or I get a little light headed. I feel like breakfast can set the tone for your day. I may not be perfect with my eating all day, but I do try my best to get my day going as healthy as possible. If I eat something unhealthy for breakfast my motivation to stay on track during the day is not as strong. So try your best and get a good, hearty, healthy breakfast to start your day.


Some of my go-to’s for the morning:

Fiber one cereal:
F-Factor approved and super filling! I have been also mixing them with some paleo friendly/grain free granola to give it an extra taste and goodness. I am loving this Purely Elizabeth brand...it is sooooo good! I also always use non-dairy unsweetened milk. I love almond, cashew, and now this pea milk I have found. All low in sugar and high in protein! Some of my others favorite brands are below.


Egg whites:
I probably eat these 80% of the time. If they are too much to stomach, you can always do one regular egg and the rest egg whites. I also love to throw some spinach in there to cook. If you don't like the typical egg whites you can tried some flavored ones. There is an Egg Beater Southwest Style you can try! I also put my eggs on GG crackers to add a little crunch and fiber to my breakfast.
Protein Shakes:
I do try and do a high protein/fiber shake for breakfast if I have not worked out and I am not feeling super hungry. I literally have tried hundreds of shakes. I am pretty indifferent to them. I will say I am crushing on the new F-Factor Protein Powder. It tastes great and keeps me fuller due to the 20 grams of fiber per serving. Check out my F-Factor Blog Post all about the F-Factor way of life. #fiber
Starbucks Egg White Bites:
If you are out and about I always love the Starbucks egg white bites. You can also take any breakfast sandwich and not eat the bread. Try to get the options with Turkey Sausage, Egg whites, and no bacon unless Turkey Bacon. For example: if you are ordering from McDonald's you can chose the Egg White Delight McMuffin and just not eat the English Muffin.

Cottage Cheese:
I also will always have some low fat cottage cheese on hand. I sometimes put it on a GG cracker or mix it with a bit of salsa. I get 2% cottage cheese that come in a 6-pack, which have 2.5 grams of fat, 90 calories, 7 carbs and 10 grams of protein. Plus cottage cheese has additional benefits. It contains a dairy protein called casein, which is a slow digesting dairy protein, so you will feel fuller longer. Casein also raises amino acid levels in your blood to give you sustained energy.

XOXO,
Crystal
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Friday, November 2, 2018

Self tanning tips + Sephora product picks

Hoop Drop Earrings + Tortoise Sunnies + White Peplum Top + Yellow Pants

One of my biggest pet peeves is, shockingly, spray tans.  I love having a faux glow, but I hate the smell and having to schedule time, in my already booked-out day, to get one.  I actually haven't spray tanned in about 4 years.  Self tanning products have gotten much better than their old prototypes.  They are so good now that you hardly need to get a spray tan!  I'm going to give you my tips on what I use, and when I use them.  If you are at Rouge level then this is a great time to stock up on your tanning supplies during Sephora's Rouge 20% off beauty sale!


- My #1 fave self tanner is the tried and true St. Tropez Express Bronzing Mousse.  This product truly is the "Holy Grail" of tanning products.  Depending on how long you let it sit on your skin, you can get a light glow or a deep, dark tan.  I opt to sleep in this for a deep, dark tan look.  I always exfoliate in the shower first to prep my skin for an even tan.  Then, I apply the mousse with the St. Tropez applicator mitt.  The mitt ensures that the tan is applied evenly without streaks and it keeps your palms from getting dirty.   If you want just a little glow, you can rinse off after a couple of hours.  I have no problems sleeping in this though, because the smell isn't that intense and it doesn't seem to come off on your sheets like spray tans.  For accidental messes, like some mousse getting on your pal, I use makeup remover wipes to clean up the area.  Sometimes, if you use water and soap to clean it up, it can cause streaks.  FYI, I only use the mousse on my body. I will explain what I use on my face below.

- My #2 fave self tanner is the "get tan in a pinch" Dr. Gross Body Glow Pads.  If I haven't had time to do the St. Tropez mousse the night before, and am in rush to get a tan instantly, then these glow pads come in handy.  You will develop a tan in an hour and the smell isn't intense, so I don't rinse off to keep the tan intense.  These have saved me before a night out!  I also use the Dr. Gross Alpha Beta Face Glow Pads exclusively as my self-tanner for my face.  They give you a natural looking tan, packed with active Vitamin D and acids to make your skin feel more exfoliated.  I have acne prone skin and I've never had a breakout with these. They actually help ward off blackheads and give a smoother texture to my face.  This pads are even great stocking stuffers, or little gifts to give to a friend or relative, if you are already in the Holiday shopping mode!  

- My #3 fave self tanner is the St. Tropez Gradual Tan Classic Everyday Body Lotion.  I use this like a maintenance tanner. It works great in conjunction with the other 2 products I mentioned.  If you did the mousse or glow body pads once a week, then this everyday lotion will help you maintain your glow.  This product is very moisturizing and again does not have a strong smell!

Shop my Tanning Picks Below!



Like I mentioned, Sephora is having their amazing Rouge level sale with 20% off all products.  Be sure to use the promo code: ROUGEBONUS.   Not only is it a great time to stock up on tanning products, but also other beauty faves as well.  I'm a self-admitted beauty junkie, so have tried many products over the years. Below are my top picks that I use + love.  These are all great Holiday gift ideas too.

Happy tanning + happy shopping!
XOXO,
Amanda


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