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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Dining Al Fresco

Look at us getting all fancy with our 'al fresco' talk today! In fact, I'm typing this post with my pinkies up, dahling! Do people even say 'al fresco' in real life?! Maybe not...but it was a better post title than 'Eating Outside.' #justsayin

However you prefer to say it, patio dining is a favorite pastime around here, and fortunately, Texas weather offers us plenty of opportunities. Our last outdoor dining set was looking pretty sad after 15 years, and thanks to an unfortunate event involving the glass top and a few clueless teenage boys, we recently got an upgrade. We didn't waste any time breaking it in, and celebrated our son's birthday last week with a cookout by the pool.

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

I looked at countless options before deciding on the Elaine 7-Piece Dining Set from AE Outdoor. Texas Summers can be intense, so durability was my first criteria...followed by design, aesthetics, and size. This table and chairs have a rustproof aluminum frame, and high pressure laminate top...both of which can withstand the harshest outdoor conditions.

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

From the design standpoint, I love the low-profile, curved-back chairs, and subtleness of the woven herringbone pattern. And once I saw a sample of the Sunbrella cushion fabric, I was sold! The mossy green perfectly compliments the backyard, and my new outdoor palm print pillows.

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Entertaining Tip: Let your cutting boards double as serving trays...the wood adds warmth and texture to your table. And, one less dish to wash!

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

You may remember the umbrella from our last patio...black and white stripes are always a good idea! The woven material of the new dining set coordinates perfectly with our existing patio set...I'm working on a little refresh of that, and will show you soon where they end up in the new backyard.

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Entertaining Tip: Recycle vintage-looking soda bottles for serving chilled water.

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

World Market is my go-to source of outdoor melamine dishes and serving ware, and I pair them with my everyday indoor pieces for a layered feel. I added the monogrammed cups to my collection this year, and completely adore them...even more since they are dishwasher-safe! (Don't worry, the 'J' is for Mr. SP, not the pool boy.) ;) #MrSPisalsothepoolboy

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

With Summer really heating up, I'm constantly reaching for this tee. It's crazy soft and lightweight, yet isn't sheer and maintains it's shape. It's currently on sale, so I'm adding new colors to my collection! And Turkish towels are my latest discovery...they are absorbant, but dry quickly and fold compactly. And unlike typical pool/beach towels, the patterns are subtle and chic.

Hi Sugarplum |
Watch | Turkish Towel (similar)


Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Between the new horizontal fence and snazzy dining set, the backyard already feels transformed...and we love spending time in it! (See how far it's come here.)

Hi Sugarplum | Patio Dining

Have you been dining al fresco this Summer?

P.S. Several of you emailed me about how to gain access to the Nordstrom Anniversary Pre-Sale this Thursday...well, that's easy...it's open to all credit or debit cardholders! I'm a slave to earning mileage points, so I opted for the Nordstrom debit card. But in fact, I only use it to gain access to the sale, then I pay with my usual credit card. #tricks

Many items sell-out before the sale even opens to the public July 17, so it's definitely worth looking in to! I've been studying the catalog like it's my job, so I'll be posting my picks later this week! Who shops the pre-sale with me?


{Source List}

Dining Set  |  AE Outdoor c/o
Green Sunbrella Chair Cushions  |  AE Outdoor
Striped Umbrella  |  Home Decorators
Palm Print Pillows  |  Tonic Living c/o
Striped Pillows  |  Ikea
Flamingo Pillow  |  Ikea
Striped Turkish Towel  |  HomeGoods
Cutting Board  |  World Market
Salad Bowl  |  World Market
Monogrammed Outdoor Cups  |  Mark and Graham c/o
Green Flatware  |  World Market
Floral Outdoor Tray  |  World Market
Striped Napkins  |  World Market
Galvanized Drink Tub & Stand  |  World Market
Striped Table Runner  |  Ikea
Outdoor Plates & Bowls  |  World Market


{Shop the Table Setting}




{Shop My Outfit}

Monday, July 6, 2015

{Top Ten} June

Welcome back to reality! I hope you had a great long weekend...or maybe your weekend hasn't ended yet! #luckyducks If you follow me on InstaGram, then you saw our shenanigans this weekend. Nothing like hurling your body through the air on a contraption built by your brother and his friend! Between that and reading the Nordstrom Anniversary Catalog, my heart rate had some serious spikes this weekend! (But seriously, how excited are you for this sale?! Who's shopping the pre-sale starting Thursday??? #duh)

How is it freaking July!? I can't believe we've already been on Summer break for a month!! Granted, it was a jam-packed, jet-setter month, full of amazing travels and unforgettable experiences...and we managed to squeeze a few projects in there, too.

In case you took an internet hiatus, here's the {Top Ten} posts of June.

Hi Sugarplum | {Top Ten} June

Summer months mean my house is a revolving door of hungry kids.
Is yours like that? In an attempt to contain the madness, I overhauled the Pantry.

The Little Black Dress...a wardrobe staple.
I showed you how to take it {Day to Night} on the streets of New York.



Hi Sugarplum | {Top Ten} June

This month, I started my {Trip Reports} recapping our Alaskan cruise.
The excursion in Juneau was Bucket List material.

No question I have favorites in my closet, but I rarely wear them the same way twice.
Case in point, this cute striped number...styled {3 Ways}.

We continued our new series, Dressing Room Diaries, showing you real clothes
on a real girl. And Mr. SP providing his own input.



Hi Sugarplum | {Top Ten} June

Ketchikan was our first Alaskan stop, and the mountains, waterfalls, eagles, 
and whales did not disappoint. Majestic is just about adequate a descriptor.

Of course I loved 'formal nights' on the ship, and jumped at the
chance to doll-up in this colorful maxi for {Cruise Style}.



Hi Sugarplum | {Top Ten} June

I love a leggy table, but don't love the inevitable lamp cord they leave exposed.

From Alaska to Montana...can you even? The weather was almost as spectacular as
the landscape, so the romper saw a lot of action.

Our backyard got a major facelift in the form of a new horizontal fence.
Seriously...you have to see it. Who knew changing the direction of the board
would make such an impact?!


And finally, we had another round of everyone's favorites, Look for Less and Sugarplum Style.

July is set to be a another doozy as I head out of town again, we start a new room makeover, Alaska and Montana re-caps continue...and for the love of Pete, I finally hopefully share our finished Kitchen! I hope you'll follow along! Happy Monday, lovebugs...I hope it goes easy on you! 

If you're new around here, or playing catch-up, here are some good places to start:

{Top Ten}

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