7.31.2014

#TBT travel to santorini, greece.

I watched The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants the other day... haha I know, probably not the best use of my time, but I couldn't turn it off because I wanted to see Rory running around in Santorini! Greece is one of the prettiest places I have visited and I would love to return someday. Let's get lost in some wanderlust worthy photos...
all photos c/o my photographer husband h :)
What is your favorite travel destination?
xo, 
Jillian
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7.30.2014

11 in 11 - my Charleston to-do list.

Now that I have a part-time work schedule, I have more free time to do the things that I have always wanted to do. And to keep me from wasting all of my time watching The Real Housewives of Orange County and all things Bravo, I decided to make a list. Here are eleven things that I want to do in the next eleven months (yahh accountability!)

1. Bike over the Ravenel Bridge. if you have visited Charleston then chances are you know the huge white bridge I am talking about. It has a dedicated biking/walking path and I'd love to ride from our place downtown, across the bridge and back. (update: I didn't bike, because I'm pregnant but I walked over the bridge.)
2. Bake bread. I'd love to make my own sourdough, pretzel rolls, and ciabatta bread from scratch.
3. Learn how to drive again. Ugh. After over 7 years of not driving I am not thrilled to jump into the drivers seat again, but I know it's something I need to get over and learn again. (update: I drove home from the grocery store -- a whole 15 minutes without wrecking our car.)
4. Take a class on Skillshare and learn something new. (update: I took the class Interior Styling: Style Your Space like a Pro.)
5. Finish a Pinterest DIY. I am so terrible at DIY's that I deleted my DIY board a long time ago. It's time to try a project! 
6. Master a difficult yoga pose.
7. Get on a boat! One of my favorite parts about my trip to the Bahamas was spending the day on a boat, and since I live near the ocean I neeeeed to make my way onto a boat before the end of the summer. (update: I took a boat ride out to Fort Sumter and saw dolphins on the way back!)
8. Try a water aerobics class.
9. Read at least 6 books. (update: done! and then some.)
10. Learn how to use our paparazzi camera. (update: over the past few months I've been using our camera to take "fancier" photos for this blog.)
11. Make a photo book of our adventures in Charleston. (update: my photo book is in progress and about half way done!)

Do you have any new goals or to-do's?
xo,
jillian 
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7.29.2014

loving lately: tan crossbodys + clutches.

I recently noticed that I don't have a small tan bag... how did that happen? I have quite a few larger purses but I really want something that doesn't weigh me down, in a light color that works for Summer and Fall. And yes, I  know it's too early to talk about Fall but it helps me justify a purchase if I can use an item throughout multiple seasons! Here are my favorites: 

Which bag is your favorite?
xo, 
jillian

p.s. stop by A Squared blog today! I'm talking all about my favorite food and restaurants. 
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7.28.2014

life lately + living in the South.

Well we have been living in Charleston for over a month now! I thought it was about time I share an update on the things I love and things I am getting used to in my new city. 
I am loving:
The weather - Lately it has been HOT with temps in the high 90's and humidity. But it's been manageable since I tend to stay indoors during the really hot part of the day 12-3 pm-ish. It's also Summer - it is supposed to be hot! So, if we can make it through the summer then I will welcome Fall, Winter, and Spring with open arms :) 
The people - Pretty much everyone I have met has been really sweet and welcoming -- apparently "Southern hospitality" is alive and well in Charleston! 
Our neighborhood - I am so happy that we live downtown and we're able to take long walks after dinner and on the weekends. The historic homes and gardens are beautiful.
The food - H and I have a long list of restaurants we'd like to try - I'll keep you posted on which places we love. So far the chocolate croissant from Belgian Gelato are pretty tasty -- and flaky! And I am a little obsessed with sandwiches from Queen Street Grocery.
The shopping - There are tons of shops on nearby King street and even more sprinkled throughout the city... I have a feeling that I am not going to do very much online shopping in the future. 
Biking - It's sooo laid back in Charleston (compared to Chicago). I've only seen a handful of other bikers who wear helmets, and I suspect that is because the drivers are super cautious around bikers (a welcome change!) 

Of course no place is perfect and there have been a few issues with our rental... 
BUGS. omg. We had ants in our kitchen when we first moved in, but thankfully we have taken care of them. After that we had to deal with palmetto bugs (aka hugeeee cockroaches that fly!!!) They are pretty terrifying and I am praying we don't see anymore. We also have spotted a few wasps buzzing around our house (which apparently eat the palmetto bugs), but I am so scared of being stung, so we have killed those too.
Crazy powerful thunder showers. I am used to living in a 4-story condo building, so our carriage house has been an adjustment. The other night it stormed so hard that our windows rattled and the whole house shook! I sort of felt like I lived in a "play-house" that should be in some mansion's back yard. Yep... I need to remind myself that the location is perfect, and we're just living here for a year. 
Mold. ugh. this is the worst issue. We recently discovered that we have mold in our lower kitchen cabinets. We sealed them up to avoid additional exposure and our landlord is working on removing the mold and replacing the cabinets. In the meantime our tiny kitchen just got smaller because we can't use some of the cabinets. Hopefully the issue is resolved soon -- or we'll be apartment hunting again.


What Charleston posts do you want to see in the future?
Favorite restaurants, shops? Things to see or do? Photography of historic homes?
xo, 
jillian
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7.24.2014

etsy summer picks.

I have added quite a few new shops to my Etsy favorites list and I thought it was about time that I share all of my summer picks. 
the waves painting $46 (I love the calming colors and textures) - pom pom shorts $29 (perfect for a tropical vacation or lounging around on a hot summer day) - delicate gold ring $18 (stack them up!) - handmade roman grecian sandals $36 (these remind me of sandals I bought in Florence!) flamingo art print $18 - dewdrop necklace $24+ (in gold or silver perfect for layering)

Do you have any new favorite Etsy shops?
xo, 
jillian
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7.23.2014

the lighter side of Magritte.

When I visited Chicago last week I was determined to see the Magritte exhibit at the Art Institute (the museum is free on Thursdays to Chicago residents). My friends agreed to meet up after work and go to the exhibit together.
To be honest, I was shocked, the featured pieces were pretty gruesome -- there were lots of dead pigeons and random body parts. Okay Magritte, I get it you're a surrealist artist -- you get a pass. But I was bummed that I didn't get to see the lighter and whimsical pieces that I was more familiar with. So I guess that means that I am a "G-rated" Magritte fan... totally fine by me! :) Here are my favorites (not included in the exhibit): 
-see all of Magritte's work here-

Who are your favorite artists? Are you a Magritte fan?
xo, 
jillian
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7.22.2014

lettermade embroidered napkins.

Full Disclosure: I received a complimentary item from Lettermade to review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Cornflake Dreams.

I received the cutest linen cocktail napkins from Lettermade, they are embroidered with golden pineapples! I have spotted lots of pineapples in the entryways of historic mansions in downtown Charleston, so these napkins will always remind me of the Holy City. Embroidered napkins are a great gift idea -- and pineapples are the symbol of hospitality, so these would be the perfect gift for your favorite hostess!


Lettermade has lots of other cute embroidered designs -- I like the flamingo and safari club prints. They also offer cute bridal and monogram options, perfect for bridal shower or wedding gifts. Now that I have a set of cocktail napkins, I am tempted to jump on the bar cart bandwagon and throw a little party :) 

Follow Lettermade on Instagram - Pinterest - Twitter - and shop here
xo, 
Jillian
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7.21.2014

Charleston rice beads giveaway.

I have been living in Charleston for a few weeks now (minus my Bahamas vacation) and I am absolutely loving it! I have a very special Southern giveaway today from Candy Shop Vintage, a boutique featuring gorgeous vintage jewelry, accessories, and Charleston Rice Beads! The shape and texture of these beads pay homage to the port city's history -- an economy founded on rice that helped establish an important cultural center in the Southeast and the United States. Charleston Rice Beads come in a variety of pretty colors -- gold, turquoise, and rose gold (my favorite!) and they are meant to be worn at different lengths (double or triple wrapped) or layered with other necklaces. I love the story behind these vintage-inspired beads, and I am so excited to giveaway one Rose Gold Charleston Rice Bead Necklace (retail value $75) to one lucky reader.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

One winner will be announced on Monday, July 28, 2014. 
Good Luck! 
xo, 
Jillian
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7.17.2014

my kind of town.

I am in Chicago for the rest of the week for work! 
Follow along on instagram @cornflakedreams to see my mini adventure :) 
xo, 
jillian
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7.16.2014

what to pack for a tropical vacation.

Thanks for all of your sweet comments on my Bahamas vacation recap post. I want to plan a return trip, especially now I know what to pack and what to leave behind. I didn't wear over half of the stuff I lugged on vacation with me (uggh) and if I could do it over again I'd pack a lot less.
DRESSES: Bring a few light dresses that you can wear to dinner depending on how smancy you want to get. I wore one of my tube-top coverups as a dress one night and a simple stripe tank dress another night. I'd skip the maxi dresses because all that extra length just traps in the heat (but if you are determined to wear one,save it for night time when it's a little cooler). I typically wear shorts + tanks but dresses are so much easier and they take up less room in your suitcase. I also like the patterned strapless dress + coral dress above for a pop of color. 

SHORTS: Bring them but make sure they are versatile -- crochetembroidered and ruffled shorts can be worn with a bathing suit or a tank. 

FLIP FLOPS: I don't care what anyone says flip flops are the best shoes for the beach. I wore my black reef pair all week (so comfy!) and dressed things up in my sunkissed tkees flip flops. You can bring along a pair of nice sandals too - just keep them neutral, that way they will match everything.

SUNSCREEN: After multiple mole removals (6!) in the past few years I am serious about skin care, so I didn't want to skimp on suntan lotion. I talked to one of h's friends (who is a dermatologist) and he recommends Neutrogena Helioplex Ultra Sheer Sunscreen with UVA/ UVB sun protection. The dermatologist I usually see also recommends that line and warned me to avoid spray suntan lotion unless it's being used for your hair part (the spray typically doesn't cover as well as lotion). I also love Aquaphor Lip Repair Lip Balm with UVA/UVB SPF30 sunscreen (nothing worse than blistered lips!) Remember to bring a straw hat for extra protection for your face.

leave it at home...
DITCH THE DENIM: Leave the jean shorts at home. Seriously don't bring any! I brought two pairs and when I wore a pair on the last day (which consisted of walking to town to the ferry and waiting for my ride) they were sooo uncomfortable (can you say swass?!) Denim doesn't breathe so my jean shorts got hot fast and then promptly started to sag and loose all of their shape - not cute. 

Don't bring long jeans either! This should be pretty obvious because you are going to a tropical island... but I'll admit I was contemplating bringing a pair -- ya know, "in case it got cold at night." nope. likely you'll be sunburnt and maybe a little buzzed (hello, pina coladas) so you won't need anything else keeping you warm. On that note, I did bring a light stripe hoodie that i wore when it rained and at night to combat the high AC temps (it was also great to wear on the plane).

JEWELRY: After lugging around heavy jewelry all around Europe, I finally learned my lesson and packed just one long pendant starfish necklace. And guess what, it was perfect. It was simple enough to go with almost everything I packed and I didn't have to worry about getting necklace tan lines or losing my favorite jewelry. 

What's on your tropical packing list?
xo, 
jillian
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7.15.2014

loving lately.

How was your weekend? We spent most of ours reading (me) and studying (him). On Sunday we went out to brunch for our anniversary and I got my ice cream fix on Friday AND Saturday. Thankfully we also made it to the gym -- everything in moderation right?! I took a yoga class and it felt sooo good to be active again. Here's a few other things I have been loving lately... 

 I am loving just about everything on Graphic Image, especially their smancy refillable notebooks, travel journals and travel accessories (I have the gold passport cover!). Their sister company GiGi New York is having a summer sale - I have my eye on the embossed python leather grey teddie tote (now $90 off). 

I received a Vow VoxBox c/o Influenster full of wedding ready products and I really loved the EcoTools Pure Complexion Facial Sponge. It is made out natural ingredients (mainly vegetable fibers) and the sponge softens when it gets wet. It was gentle on my sensitive skin and did not dry out my face. I will defiantly purchase in the future - (especially since it's only $6!) I also loved the tide-to-go stick (always smart to have when you travel), and the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure nail polish in Barracuda (something blue!)

I am in love with Bauble Bar's collaboration with Stripes & Sequins -- especially the crystal mason ring. I am kicking myself for not ordering it sooner... hopefully they restock it soon! 
xo, 
jillian

ps congrats to Amy F. you won the DPM Fragrance candle giveaway!
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7.14.2014

two years!

Happy two-year anniversary to my husband! (where did the time go?!) I am so grateful to have you in my life -- thank you for making me smile every day. You are my favorite travel partner and my best friend -- thank you for taking me the way I am :) I can't wait to see what the future will bring, but for now let's enjoy our time in this beautiful city with bike rides along the Battery and trips to the beach. Love you.
xo, 
your cornflake  PINTEREST INSTAGRAM TWITTER FACEBOOK BLOGLOVIN EMAIL
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7.11.2014

five things.

Happy Friday - I'm ready for the weekend and praying it doesn't rain all weekend! Here are five things on my mind today:
photos by Dawn E Roscoe
ONE: It's our two-year wedding anniversary on Monday!! I can't believe how fast the time has gone by since our big day.
TWO: Our place is finally feeling like a home now that I am home and we put everything away. We also got our couch delivered the other day -- it makes a huge difference in the living room (and thankfully it isn't too big for the space). Now we just have to wait for our bed to be delivered in a few weeks. 
THREE: I'm craving ice cream like crazy and I'm set on getting my fix this weekend. There is a Jeni's ice cream downtown but I'd love other ice cream shop suggestions from Charleston locals...
FOUR: I am loving my new coral nail polish, I got it for my brother's wedding and it's the first time I tried Sephora's brand (formula x nail polish $10.50). Now I want to try the translucent and sparkly shades. 
FIVE: There are a few days left to enter my Capri Blue Candle Giveaway with DPM Fragrance. 

Have a great weekend! 
xo, 
jillian 
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7.10.2014

mid-day shopping steal.

I wandered over to King street (dangerously close to where I live) and I found the two cutest dresses at LOFT. The best part -- they are both on sale for $25! I bought the blue dress below and I would have bought the green but they didn't have my size (thankfully they are fully stocked online). I love love the details on the back of both dresses and they are incredibly comfortable (hooray for easy summer outfits)!
crossover cutout back dress $25 (I am tempted to buy this one in black too) - strappy cami dress (in the prettiest green!) $25 

Happy Shopping! 
xo, 
jillian
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7.08.2014

a week in the Bahamas.

I spent last week in Hope Town on Elbow Cay Island in the Bahamas and it was ahhhmazing! There were about 50 people in our group for my older brother Andy's wedding. H wasn't able to come along because it was his first week of work (boo!) but I had a great time with my family. I stayed with my aunts in the bright blue house below. The location was perfect -- you could walk right down to the beach, super convenient for morning yoga! My parents, grandparents, and younger brother and his wife were next door, so it was easy for everyone to get together to talk or play cards. The first two days of the trip were rainy, we were in a tropical depression -- the start of Hurricane Arthur. Thankfully the weather cleared up by Wednesday for the wedding (it was so gorgeous it deserves its own post!) The day after the wedding I went out on the boat with my aunt and uncle so we could go snorkeling! We saw lots of colorful fish, a stingray, coral, and sea fans. The ocean was the prettiest shades of turquoise and blues. Riding on a boat and snorkeling is the best way to spend a day in the Bahamas (even if you get stuck in a rain storm on the way back to the beach).
see more Bahamas photos on Instagram: @cornflakedreams
It was a great trip and I loved that the island wasn't full of high-rise hotels. I walked along the beach without running into tons of other tourists, and we drove around the island on rented golf carts! Hope Town had a few restaurants (I had some really tasty blackened chicken at dinner one night), gift shops, and the cutest bakery (our house ate our weight in fresh bread and pies -- I am still dreaming about the coconut cream meringue pie). I defiantly over packed tho -- stay tuned for a list of things not to bring to a tropical island. 
xo, 
jillian
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7.07.2014

capri blue volcano candle giveaway.

Hi friends - I am sooo excited to be back blogging! These past two weeks have been crazy busy but I am happy to report that our move went well and I had the best time in the Bahamas (stay tuned for a full recap later this week). I wanted to share a special giveaway from DPM Fragrance with you today. The DPM Fragrance brands include: Aspen Bay Candles, Capri Blue, Found Goods Market and Low Country Luxe. Each brand is known for outstanding fragrances and quality. DPM Fragrance honors the traditions of candle makers of generations past, and all candles are poured by hand into carefully sourced recycled containers. After seeing my birthday wish list, they were sweet enough to send me a Capri Blue Volcano candle AND we're giving away another candle to one lucky reader!

I am a little obsessed with Capri Blue Volcano candles. If you have been in an Anthropologie store then you'll recognize the scent: tropical fruits, sugared oranges, lemons, and limes, with exotic mountain greens (it's sweet but not overly sickly sweet!) DPM Fragrance sells Capri Blue Candles in tons of pretty jar designs -- I love the signature cobalt blue collection (above), the muse collection with pastelsand the bold colors of the kaleidoscope collection. Enter below to win a large signature cobalt Capri Blue Volcano Candle! One winner will be announced Tuesday, July 15, 2014. Good Luck! 
 xo, 
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