Lifestyle

Back in Action

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It’s no news to y’all that SMC has been pretty bare all summer, and I’m so excited to announce that I’m officially back to blogging for good! But, I also feel the need to share with y’all a little bit of the story behind my break.

I started my blog a year and a half ago because I wasn’t feeling fulfilled in the “house wife life.” As much as I love my man, I felt that I was meant to do more and be more. In the time since I started blogging, I’ve gotten married to my husband, moved to a new house (and just found out we’re having to move again #rentallife), been given lots of opportunities in the fashion industry- including becoming the Charleston editor of Carolina STYLE Magazine, had my husband’s daughter and her 2 children move in with us, travelled to 6 different states & 8 countries, and went through a total hair makeover (enter the year of the ombré LOB). Sounds like a pretty great year and a half- am I right?! Or at least it should have been! But, instead of being able to fully enjoy all of the amazing things taking place in my life, I was constantly battling my own self and the strive for perfection.

Perfectionism is something that was instilled in me from a very young age. My mother didn’t mean any harm and always only wanted the best for me, but she also expected me to behave a certain way. Being the little people pleaser I was/am, I attempted to always exceed expectations. As I got older, these behavioral expectations from my mother evolved into me placing a high standard for myself in anything and everything I was doing. Then, in comes the teenage years and I was hit with the dreaded INSECURITIES that all of us women go through. Seriously though, are those not the worst?! I rebelled from my perfectionist ways and decided to give the opposite a try- doing everything I knew wasn’t right. This didn’t work either and just gave me more to beat myself up about later on in life. As if I needed anymore of that!! So finally, here I was in what seemed to be the perfect life, but something still wasn’t right. In fact, I could hear that inner battle even stronger than before. It goes a little something like this- “you aren’t good enough,” “you don’t deserve this,” “you aren’t pretty enough,” “you aren’t skinny enough,” “you just aren’t PERFECT enough”… sound familiar?!

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As women especially, we torture ourselves to try to meet these insane standards that society {and ourselves} has brainwashed us with. Whether it’s about your looks, career goals, being a great mom- we strive for this perfection that will never be attained. Because the reality is nobody is perfect- not me, not you, not Kendall Jenner & GiGi Hadid- nobody! We all have flaws and that is what makes us the special people that we are. I know we grow up hearing cliché phrases like this all of our lives, but it’s taken me a really long road to be able to say the words and truly mean them. In this war against myself, I’ve thrown away countless opportunities, strained relationships, wounded friendships and really just beat myself down. There were days this summer that I didn’t even want to get out of bed, and I didn’t. It was a really low time for me, but I feel like I had to get down to the darkest place to be able to make sense of all of this for my future.

This isn’t something that is easy for me to share (because ghasp! no perfectionist wants other people to know they’re not perfect!) and even writing this now I’m toying with the idea of just publishing an outfit post and pretending that my hiatus never happened. But, not only is this essential for me to move forward, but I felt the urge to share my experience with y’all. I have yet to perfect this whole “not being a perfectionist” thing, and I’m not here to give out advice on how to change your mindset, because I feel that’s going to be a different path for everyone. What I am here to do is let you know that you aren’t alone in these feelings. I know this is something that almost every single female goes through, whether it’s at 12 or 25 or 65, we all doubt ourselves and get down on ourselves at some point in life. And if me sharing my story helps to make even one person feel better and to know that they aren’t alone in their insecurities, then this post will be totally worth it. I know that as fashion bloggers we are constantly giving y’all the best version of ourselves, but the reality is we’re insanely flawed too! I don’t ever want anyone to look at my blog and get down on themselves or think that I am this perfect person. Southern Meets Chic is meant to inspire you to be YOU- whoever that may be!! This is a platform to empower women and for me to encourage you be the best version of yourself- flaws included!!

This summer has given me the necessary time to reflect and rejuvenate myself. I’m SO excited to be back to blogging and I’ve got so much fun stuff I’m excited to share with y’all! I know in the past SMC has been all about fashion, but I’m going to be bringing in more and more lifestyle posts as well. I would love to hear what kind of topics y’all are interested in!! Check back tomorrow morning for my first outfit post back- i’m kinda obsessed with the look! Also, be sure to follow me on social media [hit social above for links] as we head to SPAIN for my 25th birthday on Wednesday!! (insert 400 salsa betch emojis) Lastly, thank y’all for continuing to read, especially this rambling emotional post- although I wish these feelings on nobody, I do hope my words will help someone somewhere. XO

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Photos: Katie Capo of Catherine Ann Photography

 

Friday Five

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1. Girls– Okay, so I know I’m probably a little late to this party, but I felt the need to share in case any of you were still sans Lena Dunham in your life. I had bought her book, Not That Kind of Girl, a while ago on an Amazon spree, but {like many others} hadn’t gotten the chance to read it yet. Then, during a weekend long life crisis spent stressing over my life purpose, I discovered HBO’s Girls and life was okay again! Not only is Lena Dunham a literary genius full of charm and wit that has me girl crushing hard, but it’s the most relatable show I’ve ever watched. You can find a little of yourself in each of the female lead characters. I’m convinced it’s going to get me through the rest of my 20’s. Basically, if you haven’t seen it, you should probably spend your weekend binge watching!

2. Best Tote Ever– If you’re anything like me, you’ve got a million tote bags lying around your closet/entire house. But, they’re mostly Victoria’s Secret that you don’t actually want or the .99 cent grocery bag kind that you’re always forgetting to put in your car. Then, when you see a tote you actually want, it’s expensive and you feel guilty spending money on them because you’ve already got so many. Well, now’s the time to take those to Goodwill (and actually put them in your car, so you stop using plastic) because I’ve found the perfect tote bag and it’s on sale for under $30! Where does one find such an amazing deal? Target, of course!! These reversible bags are perfect for everything from the pool or beach to the farmer’s market and travel! Plus, at such a low cost, you can buy one for each of those activities!

3. H&M x CoachellaObviously, I {along with every girl in the U.S.} have been having intense Coachella F.O.M.O. I can’t be the only one who actually considered unfollowing people for the week, right?! But, I guess the next best thing is pretending you’re in the dessert by dressing the part, and H&M is here to help us out! They’ve put out a super affordable and every boho girl’s dream, Coachella themed collection to get us through all of our festival cravings. My favorite pieces are the imitation suede shorts (because I’m loving suede for spring), the adorable lace and fringe crop top (I love it in both the white and red), and of course, the “Desert Night” tank that’s perfectly suitable for lying around scrolling through everyone’s perf Coachella pics!

4. Perfect Spring Jacket– I have a serious love/hate relationship with spring weather and the only way to make it through is with a jacket that you can throw on when the chilly temps resurface! In comes Tobi to save the day and most importantly not break your budget, because the reality is you’ll really only wear something like this a few months out of the year. This vegan leather moto jacket in beautiful pastel colors is easy to wear over just about anything! I love it in the blue and lavender, but the blue is currently on sale for just $82!

5. Zinke Sale– Remember that bathing suit line that I told y’all about in a previous Friday Five post? The one with the adorable peplum one pieces and fab high waisted options?! Yeah, well, everything is now HALF OFF on their site with the code FRIENDS&FAMILY- yeah, you read that right, 50% off! I’m kind of dying inside right now and pretty sure that my summer suit wardrobe is about to be complete- and at half the cost!! Happy shopping!!

Friday Five

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1. Chloé Susanna Bootie Look-a-like– Have you been craving the celeb favorite, Chloé Susanna bootie, like I have, but don’t want to pay the crazy price?! Well, on a recent King St. shopping trip (read: pulling for photo shoots while making the occasional purchase for myself) I walked into Aldo and found her cousin- the Bugiano! For literally a teeny fraction of the price of the designer version, you can get the look for less. Plus, they’re on sale an additional half off right now! This means you can totally get the funky red pair too!

2. My Fitness Pal– Before this week I never would have written about this. A. Because I wasn’t into healthy anything (we’ll see how long this realistically lasts) and B. I assumed everyone already knew about this handy little app! But, throughout the week I’ve mentioned it to several people and they had no clue what I was talking about, so I decided I must share it with y’all too! It’s a super easy to use fitness ap (duh) that helps you log your food and counts your calories and nutritional value. Also, if you’ve got the iPhone 6 it will count how many steps you take a day and how many calories that has burned. It’s really nifty and a great way to help you stay accountable for what you’re putting in your body everyday! Oh, and it’s FREE!

3. Tavi Gevinson– This Refinery 29 article about this cool girl. I’m not sure how I’ve never seen her before, but I kind of want to be her. Okay, I do want to be her, or at least have her closet!! (insert wide eyed emoji)

4. My Favorite Football Recipe– Since the Super Bowl is coming up this Sunday, I figured it would only be appropriate to share with y’all my favorite game day recipe- bacon wrapped little smokies. Don’t listen to the comments on the recipe page saying they’re time consuming, just enlist a helper to assist in doing the bacon wrapping and your delicious snack will be ready in no time! I make these for tailgating during college football season and they’re often the first to go and my most requested! They’re by no means healthy though, so maybe wait to download My Fitness Pal til Monday!

5. Vacation Envy– Because, in the middle of winter, who doesn’t want to lust after warm weather and fruity cocktails? What better way to do so than checking out the resort Julia Engel of Gal Meets Glam, stayed in on her most recent trip to Antigua. This was her vacation from her vacation in St. Lucia. I mean seriously, the girl is everywhere! Instead of being jealous (like me), just grab a mai tai and flip through her Insta for a little Caribbean Friday pick me up!

Friday Five

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1. Illesteva– I discovered this sunglasses line via good ole Instagram, of course! I’m literally DYING to get a pair, specifically this pair. I just love the rounded shape (hopefully it looks good on my rounded face) and the combo of the tortoise with mirrored lenses. Usually you see mirrored lenses with metal frames and I love how this Italian made brand switched things up. I’m convinced my life will instantly approve upon wearing these sunnies. However, I’m not exactly sure how I would tell people who makes them because I don’t know if it’s pronounced in a fancy Italian accent or they’re just the Illest sunglasses Eva. I’m gonna go with Illest Eva!!

2. The Daily’s Juice– My life changed this week when I was introduced to the fresh made juice at The Daily! Between all of the gorgeous Insta pics and the fact that it’s owned by the same peeps as Butcher and Bee (my favorite), I knew I would love it here. But, I had no clue about their juice! I’m definitely not a typical “juice” girl either, aka I’m not a healthy eater. This combo of orange, pineapple, honey and lavender (pretty sure there was some cayenne and other goodness in there too) has won me over!! If you’re ever in Charleston, you MUST visit The Daily and Butcher and Bee!! The kale slaw is also a winner…dare I say these two are turning me healthy?! Okay okay, I won’t get too carried away!!

3. #Zeddlena– I might be a total loser for actually caring about this, but I’m not ashamed about it!! First off, anyone who knows me knows I’m a HUGE Selena fan. She’s basically perf (minus her whole Justin Bieber situation) and I want to be besties with her and TSwift, and Karlie and Cara and Kendall and Lena. I mean, come on, if you’re a female in your 20’s and don’t want to be in that circle of friends, you’re just lying! Anyways, I’m thrilled for her to finally have another guy in her life other than that mega loser, Justin. Also, my husband is a huge EDM fan so we’ve seen Zedd several times and he’s pretty awesome! I’m officially giving my stamp of approval on this relationship (because they were totally waiting for it) and duh, Selena you should definitely go to the Grammy’s with Zedd! End preteen rant!!

4. Sam Smith Radio on Pandora– Do I really need to elaborate on this?! He has the voice of an ANGEL!! I’m literally addicted to listening to his station on Pandora. It started with Sam Smith then Ed Sheeran and then John Legend…I mean, what more could a girl want?!

5. Shop My Closet– Did you know that I’ve now got an Instagram shop my closet page?! I’ve been doing some major cleaning out and purging all of the things that I simply just don’t wear that often. Most of the items sold that are listed now, but I’ll be adding more this evening so follow and keep an eye out!! Everything is in excellent condition, if not brand new with tags (totally guilty). It’s @shopmycloset_smc so don’t forget to follow for some fab finds at great prices!!

HAPPY FRIDAY EVERYONE!!! xoxo