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Friday, October 31, 2014

Swooning Over Dawlens


When I started this blog I took a leap of faith. I made a promise to myself that if I was going to do it I was really going to do it. No holding back, no pretending to be someone I'm not... just me, Ms. CourtneyLeighB!

So here I am, being myself and admitting that I have an addiction. I have an addiction to monogramming and I don't plan to do anything about it.

There is a level of personality and flair that comes with a monogrammed piece. It makes something ordinary, unique and puts your official "stamp" on it. When I was little, my sister-in-law gave me a tote bag with my monogram on it and I remember thinking it was so cool that it was specially made just for me. From there the obsession just took off! 

Dawlens creates hand-crafted and beautifully personalized gifts that are all stamped with love. This Etsy shop is quickly growing and becoming a "go to" for many. The products range from wine glasses, tumblers and coffee mugs, to hairbrushes, ornaments and key chains. With endless monogramming possibilities, this shop will not let you down.

The customer service and turn-around time for Dawlens is nothing short of sensational. Each item comes wrapped in cellophane and tied with a bow. Everything is put together perfectly and done just for you! Save yourself the anxiety this holiday season, shop from home, and give everyone on your list a gift that they will surely LOVE!

To see more of my Dawlens favorites you can look here. 


Special thanks to Lindsey from Dawlens for sponsoring this post. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Brain On 23

Yup! This just about sums it up!

I came across this article and while I was reading it I found myself continuously nodding my head at my desk and saying things like "yup", "that's me", "that's exactly how I feel", and "I can't wait to get to the episode in which Luke FINALLY asks Lorelai out!"

Apparently we are all feeling similarly at 23. I'm not quite sure how I feel about it, but I do know that Netflix and Gilmore Girls partnering together has been one of the years biggest highlights (woof)

 You can check out the article HERE 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Own it

One thing that I pride myself on is my confidence when it comes to what I'm wearing. I sometimes  throw on a bedazzled sweater, a crazy leopard dress, wild shoes, or a costume-looking top in the middle of April, but whenever I do, I wear it with confidence

Growing up with three older brothers I was constantly nagged for what I was wearing. My brothers would (they still do) make quick remarks and sometimes make fun of the outfits I had put together. They would ask me questions like "when is the rodeo in town?" or "do you feel bad that you're burning people's eyes with that dress?" These comments were all in good fun, and usually followed up with "we're just joking, you look beautiful."

As a young girl, I found my brothers to be annoying in these situations and a serious pain in the neck! As I got older I realized that although it was very subtle, they were teaching me one of the most important life lessons one can learn. Be confident. And never dress for anyone besides yourself

Now that I'm older, I can honestly say that I ALWAYS dress for me. If I like it, I'm wearin' it! One of my go-to things to say is "if you can own it, you can have it." 

I own who I am, and I'm never going to be someone I'm not just to please someone else.

With Halloween coming up I figured I'd give some quick mom advice. That costume that is so small it could fit your niece or the little girl you babysit for that you plan to flaunt because you think it will make people like you... it won't. I'm not saying don't wear a scantily clad costume. If that's what makes you happy, and you have fun doing it, I say go for it... but do it for you. Don't do it because you think you're supposed to do it.

Own who you are. Own whatever size you are. Don't spend you life trying to be someone else because believe it or not, I bet there's someone looking your way wishing they were you.


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Makeup Free

It's only Tuesday... GULP.

I've already had two Starbucks today.

And my brain made a "ping" sound earlier this morning.

So there's a good chance I'm going insane.


I just came across this article and LOVED it.

So I thought I'd pass it along.

Don't wear makeup. 

Unless you want to wear makeup.

Wear it for yourself.

No one else.

If you are wearing it for other people....

Try to go MAKEUP FREE... 

Yes. I said it.

It will make you reevaluate some stuff.

And it will definitely give you more time to sleep in the morning.

So try it.

And read this

Bean Boot How To

If you live in New England (or somewhere cold) like I do you see the L.L Bean Boot EVERYWHERE in the wintertime. These boots have been around for decades and are truly a staple in any winter wardrobe. While you may think I'm crazy for talking about Bean Boots in October (it hasn't snowed here yet... I wish I could keep it that way) I'm really just looking out for my awesome followers. I made the mistake last year of waiting too long to buy my Bean Boots. I was going to ask for them for Christmas and by the end of November they were GONE. Every color, every style, practically every size... GONE. I got them on back order and ended up getting them delivered in March! I got to wear them maybe once or twice. Soooo this year I am looking forward to getting lots of good use out of my favorite winter boots. 

Below are some outfit ideas I compiled for how to wear your Bean Boots, but honestly they can be worn with just about anything. Remember that they're snow boots, not Louboutins. You don't need to make a huge fashion statement with them, you just need to keep your feet dry and warm (which they do really well!)
Outfit #1: Top // Vest // Pants // Black Bean Boot
Outfit #2: Top // Pullover // Jeans // Brown Bean Boot
Outfit #3: Top // Vest // Jeans // Navy Bean Boot 

Bean Boot Round up :
1. Order NOW. They run true to size, but sell out fast, so get yours now. They are made in Maine, one pair at a time, so you best believe that your Bean Boots will be coming to you made with love!

2. Buy the L.L Bean Boot liners. These sherpa liners add extra comfort and warmth to your boots, and also help with the wear and tear of the sole. The bottom is constructed with EVA foam for comfort and the soft shearling helps to regulate foot temperature.

3. Want to know how to tie your boots? Read here, thanks Prep Avenue! 

4. And don't forget to get some cozy socks:) While I wish I could say I'm completely kidding with this entire post, that summer is just around the corner and that we should all go out and shop for Jack Rogers, we can't because WINTER IS COMING. So we might as well prepare! 
Below are some of my fav socks! 

Top Row: J.Crew
Bottom Row: Old Navy 

As always, thanks for reading! Enjoy your Bean Boots

Courtney Leigh

Monday, October 27, 2014

Links of Wisdom

Dreaming of summer, gathering up all my "links" of wisdom and drinking a Starbucks passion tea. Man can I multitask! 
How badly do I wish I was here right now

1. Did you know Tory Burch came out with a book? Everyone's raving about it. I think this one's getting added to my Christmas list!

2. Speaking of Christmas... is it too soon to be speaking of Christmas...? If that's wrong, then I don't want to be right! Have you heard of elfster? My siblings and I use this for our secret santa exchange every year and it makes things so much easier. Elfster is an automated way to draw names for a gift exchange and it even notifies everyone in the group via email who they "picked." What's also great about it is that you can set restrictions. For example we have it set so that my brothers and their wives can't get each other (because it is a sibling secret santa), and we also can't get the same person we had last year! It's awesome! 

3. I've been thinking about doing a post about my closet and showing ya'll how I organize it. Any interests in seeing that?

4. While we're talking about staying organized has anyone heard of the Emily Ley simplified planner? I am swooning over it and can't WAIT to get one for 2015!

5.  Looking for a pick me up? Check out my Sayings board on Pintrest and you'll find all kinds of motivational inspiration!

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1. Marley Lilly Acrylic Monogram Necklace // 2. Bauble Bar Clover Bracelet // 3. Bauble Bar Pearl Bracelet // 4.Kate Spade Rio Wave Metro Watch // 5. Marley Lilly Monogrammed Enamel Bangle // 6. ILY Couture Tassel Necklace // 7. Emily Maynard Skyler Earring // 8. Emily Maynard Baylor Earring // 9. C Wonder Tied Bow Ring // 10. Marley Lilly Nala Ring 11. C Wonder Bling Stud Earring // 12. Emily Maynard Anna Banks Ring 

Happy Monday (sigh)
 Over the weekend I did some cleaning out of my jewelry box to make space for some new pieces that I have been lusting over. Here are some of my top picks for adorable baubles that won't break the bank! Happy shopping! 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Saturday Sayings

Have a great weekend and never give up on those dreams!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Fall OOTD Favorites

As promised here is a roundup of some of my favorite fall looks! Fall means ditching the Jack Rogers for boots and flats, saying bye to the Lilly Dresses and hello to the scarfs, vests, and comfy sweaters! 

To learn more about why I decided to share my OOTD's you can look here 



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Thursday, October 23, 2014

October Loves: Marley Lilly

I love me some Marley Lilly, and after their announcement on Instagram this morning, I have a feeling you will too! 

The ladies over at Marley Lilly have always produced such high quality, amazing products. I have never once been disappointed by anything I have purchased. That being said, when you do order something monogrammed you run the risk of not loving it and also not being able to return it because it is customized. This is no longer a problem! 

Marley Lilly has made their site completely effortless. You can now create an account, save your monogram, and visually see the product with your specific monogram, color and font on it before you buy it! Genius!  

It gets even better! Spend over $50 and get free shipping! 

1. Baseball Hat // 2. Hair Bow // 3. Sweatshirt // 4. Rain Bootie // 5. Spirit Jersey // 6. Duffel Bag // 7. Lunchbox // 8. Pashmina // 9. Leather Bracelet // 10. Coffee Mug 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Why are you “clutching” onto things?

The Simple Clutch: Tory Burch // J.Crew Factory // Nordstrom
The Textured Clutch: GiGi New York // DSW // Prima Donna
The Monogrammed Clutch: Marley Lilly // Three Hip Chicks // Accessory Concierge


Many times we hold onto things because we feel that we don’t have permission to let it go. We don’t have the proper understanding of why we do the things that we do and we can’t imagine how we can go on without “it.”

Holding onto our burdens can be extremely overwhelming. We fear that we will make a mistake if we let something go and most of the time, more than anything- we don’t know where to start the process of letting go.

While I love a good clutch (the handbag kind), I wanted to incorporate my typical “lust list” fashion post with something with a little more meaning on this dreary, rainy Boston day.

We need to be able to let things go. This is one of the greatest life lessons I have ever been taught. Being able to accept the truth and be thankful, knowing how to distance yourself from negativity, focusing on what can be changed instead of what can’t, and claiming ownership of your life are all steps that will set you free. This will allow you to focus on today, on the now, on the present, and on bettering yourself as a human being.

While in class last night, my professor told us that one of her favorite quotes comes from a private school not too far away from BC. The Dexter Southfield School is located in Brookline Massachusetts and their school motto is “Our Best Today, Better Tomorrow.”

This struck a chord with me. It related all the thoughts and beliefs that I have today, with all the hopes that I have for tomorrow. I absolutely love this quote.

So shop for a new clutch, because you know you want to, and because they’re all adorable, but also remember that you may be unnecessarily clutching onto bad energy that you don’t need. We only get today once, so make it a good one! 


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Nine West Lusts

I've gotta say that I am picking up what Nine West is putting down. I've never really shopped at Nine West, but it has recently caught my attention and I they have some seriously AMAZING shoes right now. I'm definitely lusting over a bunch of these fab finds!

The Bootie (left to right): The Jareth, The Jarrad, The Illusion 
The Boot (left to right): The Timeflyes, The Contigua, The Noriko
The Pump (left to right): The Tessa, The Ispy, The Grounded
The Flat (left to right): The Bonkers, The Shindig, The Classica

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday Motivation

We're almost done with Monday. Keep on grinding!

(You'll have to wait until after 5pm for this one)

The Crazy Bag Lady: Work Edition

Handbags have always been something that I have treasured. Ever since I was a little girl I have always loved getting a new purse, clutch, or tote. I think handbags are timeless and if you buy them right, can last for many, many years. I normally try to get my bags during friends and family sales, or for big occasions like Christmas or my birthday. I definitely have spent my fair share of weekend nights babysitting so that I could save up for whatever bag I was currently craving!

I thought it would be fun to share with you all what's currently in my work bag and give some tips for the working gal who may be traveling or commuting to and from, and in need of a good multipurpose tote! 

1. This Michael Kors bag is one of my favorites. It stands up on its own, it is made of very durable leather and has two strong straps. This bag also has multiple inside pockets, some that zip, and some that don't which are perfect for your phone, makeup, pens etc. What I REALLY love about this bag is the pouch in the middle that holds your laptop, as well as the pouch on the side that holds your iPad or Kindle. This keeps your electronics safe, while also keeping your purse organized. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this bag. 

2. Sunglasses. I can't be without my sunglasses! There is always a pair floating around my bag. These ones I'm currently loving. 

3. I just got this Lilly Pulitzer umbrella and I think it's so cute! What I love about it is the auto open and the little bag you can store it in when you're not using it! This is perfect for when you get inside and need to put your umbrella away, but don't want to get everything in your tote bag all wet!

4. I never thought I'd be a Kindle person, but I have to say that I really love my paperwhite. It makes reading so much easier for me because I'm BLIND, so it is nice to be able to make the font bigger. I also love how I can read in the dark, or out in the bright sun with ease!

5. Three Hip Chicks makes the most adorable preppy items for the "modern girl." I love their stuff, and especially love this Kindle case. The shipping and turnaround time was also super fast!

6. At the beginning of the year I got a bunch of inexpensive iPhone USB cables off Amazon. I'm always losing them, so this way I'm never without a charger. I leave one in my car, in my tote bag, at work, and even in my living room next to the couch (because we all know once I sit down to watch Gilmore Girls at the end of the day I'm not getting up to get a phone charger!)

7. This Kate Spade wallet is great for many reasons, but one of the things I love about it is how many slots it has for credit cards, gift cards, ID's etc! It makes finding the right piece of plastic easy as can be!

8. There is something about the Camel Bak that magically makes me drink more water. I find that when I'm carrying it around and constantly filling it up, that I am more prone to drinking water (something I REALLY need to do more of. I used to drink only one glass of water a day).

9. My iPhone. My sweet, sweet iPhone. This is ALWAYS in my bag, and one thing I just couldn't live without. I wish I could say that I'm not addicted, but then I'd just be lying. I LOVE my iPhone. 

10. This little bag of goodies is a life saver. The one I use is Longchamp, but you can really use anything. I always have a mini "go to" bag like this one in all my purses or totes that holds all the essentials such as hair ties, tampons, nail files, purell, aquaphor, a mini hairbrush, lip balm, band-aids, deodorant and perfume.

11. Because I use my iPhone so much, it tends to die really quickly. When I'm not near an outlet, I love having this as a backup battery. 

12. Commuting to and from work is a lot more enjoyable with some good music (another reason why my iPhone dies quickly and I need a backup battery.) These headphones are small and compact, yet they still have great quality sound. 

I hope you enjoyed hearing what's in my work tote bag and that you also learned a few tips and tricks for commuting to and from work! I'm sure my love of the handbag will be back for round two in the near future. I'm always lusting a good new bag! 

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Nailed it!

Those who know me know that I ALWAYS have my nails done. Every two weeks, like clockwork, I have a fresh coat painted on. After reading the fabulous Kelsey Murray's Blog I was introduced to Julep polishes. Although I tend to always go to get my nails done, I still LOVE bringing my own colors and experimenting with tones that the salon may not have, so Julep was right up my alley! 

Julep is a Powered By Girlfriends program that takes a percentage of their proceeds and gives back to organizations such as the Malala Fund, Girl Up, and the Washington Anti-Trafficking Response. 

Julep has TONS of amazing colors as well as a unique Plie Wand that allows for control and precision when painting your nails. 

I put together a list of my favorite Julep colors. I couldn't pick just one!

Friday, October 17, 2014


No Cuts. No Color. Just Blowouts. 

Drybar is the premier blow dry bar which specializes in fabulously done blowouts! Their salons give the unique concept of being able to have someone else blow out your hair and make it look beautiful (who doesn't love that) for a low and affordable price- something the traditional salon can't offer. The experience itself in going to Dry Bar is half of the fun. The complimentary champagne, and the fun and energetic atmosphere make it an event to remember!

Drybar also sells all of the tools and products that they use! SO, when you fall in love with your new "do" you can recreate it at home again and again! 

 The owner, Alli Webb and her brother Michael talk below about how it all began!

There is a "Heart & Soul" to Drybar that few other companies have. They even have their own set of Values & Beliefs!

I gathered up some Drybar products that I am currently lusting over, (hint, hint SANTA!) all of which can be found on their website here. 

I also attached some of my favorite "how to" video tutorials that Alli Webb has done! Enjoy!

And lastly, if you haven't already been convinced, watch this video and you'll definitely be booking a  Drybar appointment!

Happy FRIDAY!!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Rainy Day Blues

The perfect essentials for making any rainy day a little less blue!

Shop this look here: 
1. Hunter Boots // 2. "Mezmerised" Polish // 3. Raincoat // 4. Camelbak // 5. Scarf // 6. Socks // 7. Hat // 8. Bralette // 9. Earbuds 

Pumpkin Crafts

Last week I did a fall roundup of all my favorite things I love to do during this season along with some fun recipes I want to try, and a few things I'm lusting over. 

As promised, I said that this week I would do a tutorial on something different then your normal carving of the Jack- O'Lantern. While I LOVED monogramming my pumpkin last year, I figured that since I don't have as much time this year to dedicate to actually carving, that I would find a fun, easy, quick and inexpensive way to decorate my pumpkin. 

To do this craft you will need
1. A pumpkin. I bought really small ones from my local grocery store so I wouldn't have to carry a big one home. They were about 60 cents each and I was able to decorate more then one!
2. Thumb tacks. I decided to get gold thumb tacks because I had seen a bunch of different pumpkin designs from Pintrest that used gold tacks and I liked the way it coordinated with the orange/gold in the pumpkin! You can get these same thumb tacks HERE. 

Another fun decorating idea is one that I did last year with my niece. Because she is too young to carve, and also to use tacks, I bought some glitter glue and let her draw all over the pumpkin with it!
To do this craft you will need 
1. A pumpkin. You may want to get a slightly bigger pumpkin then the ones shown in the thumb tack pictures. This size was great for my niece because she could carry it once it was dry and move it around.
2. Glitter glue. This crayola glue was great because it dried really fast and was also washable (our little pumpkin project turned into a finger painting project, which then turned into paint all over our clothes... get washable glitter glue!)

Another fun idea for decorating pumpkins with kids is to use pumpkin face stickers like these ones. I ordered these this year for my nieces and nephew and yesterday my mom helped them to decorate their pumpkins. They LOVED it. 

Thanks for reading about my no carve pumpkin craft ideas! Although I miss having a sweet monogrammed pumpkin like this one, I have to say that this was MUCH easier! 

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Feel Good Post

This mornings "feel good" post is dedicated to my sweet little (they're 60 and 80 pounds) doggies Hank and Holly! Today is their eight birthday! We got Hank and Holly back when I was in High School and our family has been absolutely in love with them every since! They are brother and sister and are totally inseparable! Happy Birthday my sweet pups!
I also found this article to be highly fitting for my family! We love our dogs! 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Tips For Surviving College (and life)

A large part of my life at Boston College was dedicated to Residential Life, where I spent my time working with students and guiding them through the many challenges of college. As an undergraduate, I was a Resident Assistant and as a Graduate Student, I was a Graduate Staff Assistant. Both of these roles allowed me to have leadership responsibilities and at times an extremely busy schedule, with many sleepless nights. Although my role in ResLife was highly tiring, it was also highly rewarding. I was able to take my past experiences as an undergrad, as a freshman and as a young woman and really reflect on my life. Through this I was able to give advice, explain that indeed, life goes on, and truly mentor the amazing women whom were on my floor.
At the end of this past year I sent my girls on my floor a letter and along with my letter came a set of "Courtney's words of wisdom." While these words were geared towards that year's current freshman class, they should really be geared towards anyone who will listen. Take these "words of wisdom" with you and you'll go far in life.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Shopbop 25% Off Sale

The SHOPBOP Friends & Family Sale is HERE! One of my favorites! Use the code FAMILY25 and get 25% off your order! There are a LOT of brands included in this sale (like Tory Burch) that are normally excluded so shop shop shop! 

Here are some of my handpicked favorites! 

1. Shift Dress // 2. Belt // 3. Sunglasses // 4. Suede Pump // 5. Flats // 6. Clutch // 7. Tote // 8. Crossbody // 9. Bracelet // 10. Denim // 11. Green Studs // 12. Wrap Bracelet // 13. Rose Gold Studs // 14. Boots 

Morning Words Of Wisdom

Monday, October 13, 2014

Office Essentials For The Working Girl

These are my top fifteen favorite, most reasonably priced and unique accessories for the working girl! I absolutely love all these adorable desktop essentials! 
Eat your heart out! 
1: Thank You Notes // 2. Gem Erasers // 3. Sticky Note Set // 4. USB Cable // 5. Acrylic Letter Sorter // 6. Desk Organizer // 7. Notepad // 8. Clock // 9. Paperweight  // 10. Pencils // 11. Memory Box // 12. Push Pins // 13. Ball Point Pen // 14. Daily Planner // 15. Monthly Planner 

The Chambray Way (OOTD Style)

I loooove a good chambray shirt! I think they are the perfect go to piece when putting together an outfit. Below you'll see three ways that I have paired my chambray. The first look is a casual one with leggings and fun graphic tee. The second look was a little more dressy, paired with a skirt and heels for work. And the third look is one of my favorites. I live in vests during the winter and fall, so matching my chambray with a cozy vest makes perfect sense!

Top: Old Navy- Old (loving this and this)
Chambray: Old Navy- last season (this seasons version)
LeggingsLauren Conrad
ShoesSteve Madden
Map NecklaceThree Jane NY

Chambray: Old Navy- last season (this seasons version)
ShoesJ.Crew (on sale!)

Chambray: Old Navy- last season (this seasons version)
Vest: Vineyard Vines- last season (this seasons version
Pants: J.Crew
Boots: Chinese Laundry 

Thanks for reading! Happy Columbus Day!

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