Thank You, Europe

Hello all,

I apologize I haven’t been posting lately, but the Hubby and I have been mad busy getting ready for our move to Guam (yes, you read that right)! Talk about a big transition!

Since we are visiting family in the Midwest en route, my luggage is quite eccentric. I’ve got boots and flip flops; maxi sundresses and fluffy pullovers. With the temps barely hovering over the zero mark back home, I will be the Layering Queen!

Living in Germany has been an amazing, a wonderful adventure. Never did I think I’d get to experience Paris THREE times, show the wonders of Greek life to my hubby, walk inside the Roman Coliseum, and ride a gondola in Venice.  Along the way I got to rock some fierce fashions, and so I thought I’d share my favorite looks in favorite places.:)

Venice.

Venice.

Kindsbach, Germany

Kindsbach, Germany

Ready to take Rome at night!

Ready to take Rome at night!

Milan.

Milan.

At Notre Dame, Paris.

At Notre Dame, Paris.

Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris.

Trier, Germany

Luxenbourg

Luxenbourg

Though I’ll be trading in my moto jackets and leggings for more sundresses and shorts, I pledge to keep taking fashion risks and working my curves, no matter where I go.

Here’s to a new adventure!

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie.

 

 

 

I’ve Got 100 Posts and a Giveaway is One!

Hello all!

I can’t believe it, but this is my 100th post! I just got back from a wonderful time in London (more on that later) and I thought we should celebrate this milestone! So, this is my last giveaway before we leave Europe. Check out this adorable wallet I picked up – it’s the original beauty icon, Marilyn!

Marilyn wallet 1

The back view -so cute!

The back view -so cute!

I’m excited for one of you to win it! So just click on the giveaway banner to the right and GOOD LUCK!

And yes, LONDON was fantastic. Too many places to see and do within a few days, but we managed to pack in quite a few sights. Here’s a few highlights:

At Westminster Abbey – where the royal weddings take place!

Us at Westminster 1

Enjoying a cocktail before seeing The Book of Mormon (which is HILARIOUS!)

A tasty Vodka Collins!

A tasty Vodka Collins!

We originally wanted to walk across the Tower Bridge, but it was WINDY! Check out my “lovely” hair! However, the bridge is gorgeously lit at night.

Brrrr!

Brrrr!

Despite my limited luggage allowance, I did bring back some hot bargains from Primark! I’ll be modeling those very soon. I could’ve been very dangerous in that store…but I was good and set my budget!

Hope you are enjoying your 2015, and thanks so much for following! Good luck on the giveaway!

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xx Melanie.

 

Bucket List: Shopping in London!

Hello lovelies!

I am so psyched up because this week we finally get to see London! I have waited all my life to see The Globe, London Bridge, the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace!

Of course, I am drooling about the SHOPPING possibilities!

Now, two things: I am a blogger  on a budget, and we limited on our luggage size (boo, Ryanair!), so after doing a little research, I have Primark and Topshop on my radar! Here’s hoping I can choose just a few things from a buffet of styles!

What I’m coveting so far:

GORGEOUS evening bag!

GORGEOUS evening bag!

I could rock this duster!

I could rock this duster!

Such a chic bodycon dress!

Such a chic bodycon dress!

I have been wanting a lightweight kimono for months!

I have been wanting a lightweight kimono for months!

Super cute culottes for when we move to Guam!

Super cute culottes for when we move to Guam!

ALL of these looks are from Primark and all under 20 pounds!

UK Bloggers: Where else should I look for affordable fashion in London? Please comment!

I’ll share my travels when we return!

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xx Melanie.

Thankful for Travel, Thrift Finds, and Beer!

Hello lovelies!

Back home, it’s Thanksgiving and a time for being thankful for all the blessings we have. I am very thankful to have the opportunity to travel while here in Europe, and since it’s our last Thanksgiving in Germany, we decided to head to one of our favorite places to stay, the Edelweiss Resort in Bavaria.

It's like a storybook location!

It’s like a storybook location!

You know the “Sound of Music?” This area is where Julie Andrews was spinning around and singing about the hills being alive! Though there wasn’t any snow (which is a bit unusual this time of year), the view is still gorgeous.

The town of Garmisch is adorable with many unique shops and cozy cafes. Though it’s mainly a U.S. tradition, Germany has jumped on the Black Friday train (though they are more sane about it – no 4 a.m. openings here!). However, I discovered a thrift store on an army base and got this comfy and stylish sweatshirt dress for just $5!

My $5 find!

My $5 find!

Shirtdress pocket

Check out the cool little details on the pocket! The shoulders have faux leather patches. Looks great with my H&M skirt and Just Fab boots!

shirtdress selfie

Shirtdress boots

What else do I love? German beer! Especially when I can go on a brewery tour and taste many different kinds! The hubby and I got to sample all kinds of beer, even one with a chocolate base (Don’t worry; we had someone drive us)! Wolfgang, the brew master, presented us with honorary Brew Master diplomas!

shirtdress wolfgang

Why sure, I'll try another kind...

Why sure, I’ll try another kind…

On a more serious note, I am incredibly thankful for all the love and blessings in my life. Life can be very tough at times (and I have had my share of those moments), so when life is peaceful, I enjoy every bit of those moments.

I am also very thankful to all of YOU for reading my blog! I really appreciate the “likes,” comments, and sharing. Here’s to all of the blessings we enjoy!

Cheers!

Cheers!

 

Reflection of a Journey

Summer is winding down, and as I look ahead, I realize that our time in Germany is coming to a close. In a few short months it will be time to get ready for a new adventure! Such is the life of a military family.

I have really enjoyed living in Europe these past three years.  This girl who grew up in a small town in Michigan used to fantasize about seeing the Eiffel Tower, and I still shake my head in disbelief that I did!

Mel Paris shrt

Ahh Paris! Tourist shirt over an H&M dress.

From Amsterdam, to Paris, Switzerland, Crete, Berlin, Venice, Milan, Verona, Rome, Florence, Innsbruck, Munich – and all of the little towns we visited in Germany, it’s been an amazing ride. I appreciate and treasure the wonderful opportunity for all the travel we’ve been able to do.

Calling Romeo on Juliet's Balcony in Verona!

Calling Romeo on Juliet’s Balcony in Verona!

It’s been a trade off, though. For all the wonderful memories made, we’ve missed out on weddings, a funeral, Christmas parties, birthdays, and everyday hangout time with family and friends. Our time away definitely makes me more appreciative of the time we do get with them, and with every passing year, I know there is less time for all those things. It’s hard being away sometimes.

Wearing an icon from Deb Shops in front of the iconic Gucci store in Rome.

Wearing an icon from Deb Shops in front of the iconic Gucci store in Rome.

Someday we will be back living in the States, and though I will be glad to be closer to loved ones, I know I will be in for culture shock. I will miss the charm of a small village, the castle on a hill, a designer store just minutes away, the ancient architecture.

Will I be able to adapt back to a city with strip malls, Wal Marts, and fast food on every exit? I don’t know.

But until then, I will make as many memories here as possible!

With Cleopatra and Marc Antony in Verona.

With Cleopatra and Marc Antony in Verona.

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie.

 

 

I Have a Leopard Problem!

Ahhh leopard print! For the past couple of seasons, it’s been hot for purses, shoes, dresses, pants…well, EVERYTHING.

This is awesome and bad for me at the same time.

Let me explain. I have a leopard print throw blanket, pillows, and sheets.

Three leopard print purses.

Four pairs of leopard print shoes.

And, several shades and colors of leopard print shirts and dresses!

My current favorite piece? This Michael Michael Kors print dress! I got to rock this while shopping in Milan.

leopard mk 1

Michael Michael Kors dress, Just Fab bag.

leopard mk 2

I also have a problem with earrings – love these Betsey Johnsons (a gift from my stepmom!)

leopard mk 3

Even my nails are leopard inspired!

Midi rings by A Wild Violet. (That's a Michigan mitten ring!)

Midi rings by A Wild Violet. (That’s a Michigan mitten ring!)

So, yes- I’m addicted!

You can count on seeing more leopard, but I also promised the Hubby I’d change things up décor wise, too!

What’s your fashion addiction?

I love comments:)

Love, light, and shoes –

xx Melanie.

When you have a bad hair day…

Ah, summer. It’s a time of lightweight tees, floaty maxi dresses, sandals, and shorts! With all these wonderful things we love to wear, it’s also a time for humidity, which means…BAD HAIR DAYS!

As you can see, I keep my hair short in a hybrid of Halle Berry and mid 1980s Sheena Easton. Most times, it looks like this:

Floral skt CU

But since my hair is thick and naturally curly, on those especially sticky days, there’s no amount of product that can tame my curly top!

So during our trip to Italy, I took a cue from Jennifer Lopez and worked a mini turban with a scarf!

Ready to take on Florence!

Ready to take on Florence!

Have I mentioned how gorgeous Florence, Italy is? On “Turban Day,” we checked out this beautiful Basilica.

Turban 2

Cardigan, Charlotte Russe. Skater dress, Forever 21 Plus Gladiator sandals, Graceland. Accessories, thrift shop finds!

Turban 3

When I have “manageable” frizz, these are my favorite go to products:

john-frieda-collection-frizz-ease-straight-fixation-smoothing-cr

John Frieda Frizz Ease Straight Fixation works wonders on bushy curls and unruly bangs!

41XPZmJ-njL__SY300_

My new favorite hairspray is L’Oreal’s Elnett Satin. Yes, it is a bit pricey (usually around $16), but TOTALLY worth it.

I’ve never had a hairspray that allowed a good hold AND I could still run my fingers through!

What’s YOUR favorite hair tricks and products for summer?

BY THE WAY…CONGRATULATIONS to my Parisian Giveaway winner, Cheryl from fatandfabulousme!

Be sure to check out her blog, it’s pretty awesome!

Thanks to everyone who entered! Don’t worry, I will be starting a ONCE A MONTH GIVEAWAY, so stay tuned for August!

Love, laugher and shoes…

xx Melanie.