S or S? : Summer Staples

So, what do you want to splurge or save on?

It’s that time of year again where we find ourselves at a cross roads. To buy new, exciting clothes..or deal with what you have for yet another season of not so cute instagram posts.

Obviously, we have our summer staples: Bathing suits, a cute pair of shorts, sunglasses, flip flops, and a sundress…anything else? I’m probably sure I’m missing plenty of staples…but my dog keeps licking my leg, so that’s what we’re going with for now.

So, what do you want to splurge or save on?

Bathing Suit

Splurge. Yep, splurge on this one. I gotta say, buying bathing suits from Target are great in a pinch, but when you actually spend some quality money (like $100 and you have a mini heart attack while swiping your card) you get a pretty great bathing suit that will last a while. Lands End, Everything but Water, Boden..just to name some. Some things are reasonable, and some stuff is just outlandish– but I’ve seen the difference first hand in how a GREAT bathing suit fits vs a cheaper one. As a bigger laday, it’s hard to find something that flatters you.

Sundress

Save. I know we can all agree that a $98 sundress from Lilly tends to be a *must* for me, but there are so many different dress options these days, that you can get a practical dress for less than $20 that will last you for the summer. Guess what? That color trend or style of dress may be out of style next summer, so it’s best to spend less.

Shorts

Save. Same goes for this topic. Not gonna lie, a good pair of shorts can hug you a special kind of way, but I own expensive shorts…and the pockets stick out and make my hips look wider than they need to. Guess what pair of my shorts DON’T do that? My JCrew FACTORY shorts for literally $15. So, my good pair of shorts that hug me in all the right ways, was $15, while my $68 Lilly Pulitzer pair makes my hips look like they don’t lie. Sometimes, they do. So don’t be fooled.

Sunglasses

Save. Okay, is it just me, or can you find some bomb-ass sunnies for nothing? I know that I had a $3 pair from Marshall’s for the longest time, until I sat on them in my car and then squinted my eyes all the way to New York. I currently have a pair from Dollboxx which is a little more pricey, but still reasonable…and not $150. To add to that, they also make bathing suits that I wouldn’t be caught dead in..but if you can rock them, be my guest.

Flippys

Splurge. Yeppers–buy that pair of Jacks, Eliza B’s or Tory’s. It’s treat yo’self day. First off, Jacks hurt like a bitch, but last a while– unless you get those Jellies, because they hurt AND don’t last…but the reg leather ones are great– just try not to wear them for a whole day unless you like being a grumpy bitch. Eliza B’s are about $60, and WORTH IT. I have about 4 pairs from high school that I can still wear and not look like a bum. They LAST. I just bought a new pair, because they’re madras– but I love how comfy they are and how supportive they feel. Lastly, Tory Burch sells some cute sandals, man. I don’t own any, but for the girl who has everything and wants more– these are for you. She has a ton of choices, and I’m into each one. Everyone might be different, but in my opinion, a sloppy shoe is a sign of a not so put together person.

This summer, spend smart, spend less, and make sure to plan out your purchases so you have enough left over for an impromtu hooky day from work..or if your boss is reading this, an impromtu PTO day 🙂

Love you, mean it.

K

 

Wanna Save Money?

I wouldn’t call myself exactly…broke AF– but we’re scraping by…so I wanted to close that gap by trying out a couple of ideas that you always see on the internet– and see if they work: Guess what? They don’t.

I wouldn’t call myself exactly…broke AF– but we’re scraping by…so I wanted to close that gap by trying out a couple of ideas that you always see on the internet– and see if they work: Guess what? They don’t..and NO you can’t make $5,000 by doing surveys because you will literally kill yourself from frustration 10 minutes in.

So, I figured out that I should take out my daily spending money per paycheck in cash and leave the rest in my bank account– untouched. WHALE– that kind of worked– but if I didn’t want to spend my spending money because of something I just …needed…to buy, I would just swipe my debit card. SO, that didn’t work too well, but I did figure out that I am deathly afraid to be without a credit card for fear I’ll get kidnapped from work and need to pay for my way home after I escape. So glad I watch so much Person of Interest.

Anywho– here’s what I found works if you are looking for some extra cash, and you have no dignity– like me!

Stop Having Friends

Yea- I said it, but you were thinking it. Friends are super expensive. Weddings, Bar nights, dinners out– sure, you end up sitting home alone every night wondering what to do with the decor of your house– but at least you have your money. (Loljk)

For real though–

Poshmark

Yea, that’s right. Put your crap up for sale. No, not your crappy crap– but your clothes and accessories that you don’t need. And by that I mean– if you didn’t wear it this past season, and it doesn’t fit you…and you forgot about it– SELL it. It makes you feel good!Don’t just sell your clothes, sell your baby’s unworn clothes, or your husband’s clothes that he doesn’t like!

Granted, Poshmark takes out a portion of your profit– but you know what, the app is super user-friendly, and after a couple great reviews– you can shop their wholesale and really turn a profit! However, I haven’t tried that yet, because I’m not too big on the whole…risk your own money for a 50% chance of a reward. Knowing me, I’ll end up with 5 duplicate graphic tees that say “Barre so hard” and no one to sell them to.

Be A Guinea Pig

This too…you read that right. Look up research groups or research study groups. Guess what? If they’re willing to pay me $60 to taste their off brand peanut butter cup…I’m in, and you should be too. Check out local college unions or libraries to see if there are advertisments. They need people, and honey– we’re people!

Stop Buying

Guess what else worked? Not shopping at Nordstrom’s. Or Lilly, or francescas, or etsy…The easiest way to see money in your bank account is not to waste it away on something frivolous. You worked hard for your money– stop wasting it. (Says the girl who was on a mission to buy a new dress for a wedding today)

Well, we can’t all be perfect all at the same time.

Love you, mean it.

K

 

 

Home Decor Ripoffs!

Is anyone else sitting on their couch on a Friday night watching HGTV and wishing that they figured out a way to make a ton of money and have a fabulous, Instagram worthy living room? No? It’s just me?

Okay, well is anyone on my same page about this: You hear about a store that is supposed to have amazing deals and awesome stuff, and you muster up the courage to go in– and everything you see is mediocre…and costs more than it should? Yea, me too.

I’m here to tell you that you aren’t alone– home decor is cute, and commercials and social media posts from various stores make you want to jump in the car and drive there even if it’s 10 at night. When you find a new place, the first visit in is like a blind date. You don’t know what you’re gonna get, and you might get stuck with a huge bill if things don’t work out.

So here it is: The top 3 most overrated places for home decor.

If you’ve had luck at these places, I need to go shopping with you– because I walk in, do a loop, and walk out after looking at a couple of price tags.  I can never find anything splurge worthy or affordable enough for me to pull out my Henri Bendel and swipe my Amex. (Don’t tell my husband I still use that card.)

Let me know, am I just looking for the WRONG things at these places? And if you get deals, what are you shopping for?

Pier One

Alright, don’t freaking kill me…but I can’t get into it. I walk in, and I immediately fall in love with a kitchen table that is farmhouse style with beautiful chairs and I can’t have it because it’s so much money and the chairs are all sold seperately….gasp for air… not that this happened to me. Although it’s featured on ebates rn, it’s a total rip off in there. And no, I’m not still bitter about the table, okay? I go in there, and I see a bedazzled pillow that my dog (or baby) would probably choke on, and it costs more than my gas to and from work all week. FORGET IT. I know, there are coupons, but it doesn’t help much. You can get the same, cute stuff for much cheaper other places: IE: Kirklands, Wayfair, NOT Joss and Main, Home Goods, and Ikea.

*Yea, I know Joanna Gaines has a new line that Pier One is selling, and since I love her– I’ll try to go in there again, because I’m a sucker for Chip and I want them both to love me.

Pottery Barn

NO apologies for this one. Included here: West Elm and Crate and Barrel. What am I? A Rockefeller? Not a chance in hell. I went in there during Christmas time to pick up a candle for my mother– one of those battery ones– and I almost choked on my Nordstrom cookie when she told me the price. Bitch, what?! One of those was $60. No way, Josephina. On that note, they have endless amounts of picture frames that are apparently dipped in 24k gold before they are shipped over to this place. I get it, I sound like Phoebe from Friends, but it’s true! If you don’t have to eat everyday, I suggest taking a look here for all of your home needs.

ZGallerie

I’ve never stepped into a store, but holy cannoli! It is expensive online! I watch a ton of YouTubers, and they all worship the ground ZGallerie builds on. Want something to hold…something in? $50 please. What about a purple fuzzy pillow? $150! I will admit, some of their accessories are comparable to what Home Goods sometimes tries to pull on us, but looking at this website makes me feel the same way I feel when I walk into a Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Ripped off.

 

Either way you slice it, I need to be able to rationalize my finds, and also be able to feed my child at the same time. There’s no way I’m going to spend the price of formula for two weeks on a golden artichoke for my mantle.

 

(I mean, if it’s super cute, I’ll consider it)

 

Love you, mean it.

K

 

 

 

 

 

TBT: Money Edition

After a few close calls with not having enough money to get home from Manhattan, I quickly tried to change my ways.

I am not sure as to when I started shopping like I had money, but it must have been way back in high school after I started my first job. I looked for deals, and not so good deals: whatever way I could get the look and brand that I wanted. Although I have worked through the better part of my life, I always found a way to not save money, whether it was a new bag, or a movie that I had to see: it was always the same story…maybe next time.

After I met my boyfriend, we finally realized how materialistic our lives had become, and set off on a journey of trying to save up for a future (key word: trying). It started off slowly, as we were in different countries, and I was living with my parents. I couldn’t seem to shake the urge to buy a new outfit every Friday, or a new makeup palette each paycheck. In hindsight, I was making up the excuse that since I didn’t have to pay for anything other than my coffee in the morning—everything else that I earned was fair game to be spent. Let’s just call this my immature stage. I started hiding my online buys from my parents, and racing the clock to get home before them so I could quickly dispose of the evidence. As for my boyfriend, he was buying items from 100 packs of batteries to a signed Oliver Khan jersey that went for a cool 100 euro. Clearly, we needed some sort of therapy.

Although I spent most of my time in school or working, I still find time to blow through my $500 paycheck every two weeks. A Sephora, Forever 21, J Crew, and Target trip were necessities every two-week period. Not to mention the amount of online purchases from ShoeDazzle, Etsy, and Birchbox that found their ways into my mail slot each week, too. By the time the Thursday before my paycheck came, I was counting up quarters in my car to buy myself a cup of coffee. Did I mention I wasn’t paying for my own gas, school loans, phone bill, or necessities? If I could, I would go back in time to give myself a good shake. What the heck was wrong with me? How did I manage to waste away thousands of dollars on items that I can’t even remember?

After a few close calls with not having enough money to get home from Manhattan, I quickly tried to change my ways. I asked my mom if she needed help around her office, and she offered to have me do her filing. Oh, how the mighty had fallen. I stored away the extra cash in an unused wallet, and tried to forget about it. Every now and again, the urge would creep up, and all my progress would crash down around me.

Fast forward to a year ago: my boyfriend and I were planning on getting engaged, I was living in Philadelphia, and I was still on my dad’s bankroll. I was miles ahead of my past self, but I was nowhere close to where I needed to be. I was living in my future parent-in-law’s house, and I was still depending on my dad’s gas card and EZpass to get me to work. I chose a career in retail, and as many know…that doesn’t exactly shout, “money.” I was always looking for a quick fix, when all I needed were 3 things. Three things that changed the way I thought about money, and has now allowed me to continue my career in retail, while purchasing a house, handling my own student loans, and never being late on a house payment.

  • I never thought of money in the correct way. I always thought money was a gateway to a shopping spree, or expendable. I seemed to always be waiting for the next paycheck: I would mess up my “saving plan” by spending it all in Nordstrom, and I would say to myself, “I’ll just wait for the next time I get paid to start saving.” All successful savings starts with a little bit of self-control, and just a bit more of planning. Living paycheck to paycheck? Me too. With a little planning, your miniscule paycheck will seem doable. Sit down and calculate how much money you need each day. For me, I like a coffee in the morning, and that won’t change. Calculate about $2.95 for a Venti iced, and a little extra for a treat at work (if you can). Depending on how often you get paid, take the number of days in between paychecks and multiply your $5.00 per day by that number. That is how much you need for spending money. Afterwards, plug in your monthly costs: electric, water, or mortgage. As for grocery shopping, make sure to keep your receipts to see how much you are spending, and what your average is. Always add that into your monthly costs. Check to see if there are ways to cut the fat, and what is non-negotiable. I use the app Minted in order to get my finances in order. Although I tend to like writing down things on paper, I do like the ease of an app in order to take my finances with me! Minted allows you to see how much you spend, where money is being spent the most, and it even lets you set your own budgets!
  • Utilizing credit cards and bank accounts responsibly. We all are in the same situation; taking out money can be a hassle. In this day? Who needs it? Everyone takes a credit or debit card, so why bother with cash? By taking out your paycheck spending money the day you get paid, it lets you envision your money being taken away from you instead of swiping a card. On bigger and necessary purchases, it is okay to whip out a Mastercard every so often, but make sure that you are not living beyond your means. For my husband and I, we pay off each purchase in the same billing cycle that is was made in. If your bank or credit card does not have an easy app to maneuver, I highly suggest moving your business elsewhere. I judge service of a company on how easy their app is to move around in. If I have to jump through hoops to find my balance, pay it off, or check out my statements, I won’t be staying too long. For my own bank account, I chose PNC bank. I have the virtual wallet account, and I cannot say one bad thing about it. The app is super easy, and customer service is out of this world. My favorite part? No minimum. The bank likes to give you a threshold to let you know when you are low, but I have gone under, and I was not charged a ridiculous amount of money. (Looking at you, TDbank.)
  • No one hates free money, right? Every other website on the planet is banking that you will give them your email address and not hate the amount of spam that they send to you every day. Something that has worked for me is being a product tester. I got the hookup from a friend who was a science major at a local college. The testing center had gone to her school looking for product testers and she signed up. When she told me about it, she sent me the email. I filled out the survey, and I was called in to do the product testing! The studies vary from products to take home, while others take about a half an hour to do at the actual center. Many times the money is around $50, but other times, it can be around $100. That can be a quick fix for money if you are in dyer need!

Many times, people who look at money as a necessary evil, make money the enemy. Money, when handled correctly, is able to take a backseat to what is important in your life, and just be there when needed. After my husband and I got a handle on our finances, we were finally able to sit back, live within our means, and learn to make sacrifices. We can’t all have a Prada bag for each day of the week.

25 Things You Should Spend Your Tax Refund On

Tax season is upon us, and that can only mean one thing…refunds. A tax refund is a refund on taxes when the tax liability is less than the taxes paid. In other words, it’s treat yo’ self o’clock. Get it together girl…this means there’s another list here and you best be excited. I’ve come up with some fun things to do with your refund (if you are lucky enough to get one). 


25 Things You Should Spend Your Tax Refund On

  1. Save it.  For a house, or a dog…whatever you want.
  2. Go see a movie.
  3. Do this.
  4. A new handbag.
  5. A massage.
  6. A concert. A Taytay concert…or maybe Korn…who knows?! It’s up to ya’ll.
  7. Take a bartending class. Pick up some extra cash, YAS gurl.
  8. Here’s a tip: get the entire refund in $1.00 bills and roll around in it.
  9. Buy everyone shots at the bar. This one is dumb, don’t do it.
  10. Get one of these: Southland Cotton. Instagram it to me. I want one, and I’ll live vicariously through you.
  11. Go on a vacation.
  12. Buy your family’s birthday presents in advance.
  13. Pay off you credit card balance.
  14. Take up another language…or just pretend to.
  15. Go get that Target Lilly Pulitzer.
  16. Get all of your t-shirts monogrammed.
  17. Buy some SoPro.
  18. Pretend you’re in a rap video.
  19. Invest it.
  20. Take care of some of dat principle in your student loan.
  21. Sob because you didn’t get money back.
  22. Get mad because you had to pay the state.
  23. Go out on a date with your love.
  24. Go out on a date with your girls.
  25. Buy a new wardrobe….cause girl, you’re too fabulous to do laundry!

Well, that’s that! I’m using mine to get some fabu home decor for my pseudo house. You know, the usual. Anyway…

Love you, mean it. 


Xoxo Kate 

Kate Spade Surprise Sale

It breaks my heart to say that I found that I didn’t have the impulse to spend my money on the beautiful items on the website.

Hi Saving Beauties! Let’s just talk about a little thing called a vice. Mine? kate spade. Ugh, my favorite types of handbags, and my ultimate splurge items all come from kate. I’m not sure what they are trying to do to me…sending me e-mails about a “surprise” wedding sale with 65% off of everything wedding. Sigh. But, after looking through all of the sale items (yes I looked!) I am happy to report back to all of you, I didn’t break. Yes, that cake topper is a must…and yes those “Mrs” earrings are to die for…but I don’t need them. It breaks my heart to say that I found that I didn’t have the impulse to spend my money on the beautiful items on the website. Not that I’m not KICKING myself over it…but I am becoming more responsible with my money. I’ll give you an example: As you all know, I have to pay my own phone bill now, and I’ve discovered that by spending a mere $100 on a totes adorable handbag is very tempting, I could also use that money to save up for my guy’s birthday present AND pay my part of the phone bill. My logic that “what’s 100 dollars going to do anyway?” has been thrown out of my Mazda 3 window like no one’s business. I need that $100 for me to LIVE…and you do too. If you have the extra money, be my guest: kate spade. I do strongly advise you to enter (if you dare) and practice self control. Let’s call this approach-avoidance therapy. Go in, look at the items, and DON’T buy anything.   One tip: After you receive the e-mail…because they are tricky and make you enter it in order to see the sale, go to your inbox and UNSUBSCRIBE. We’ve talked about this before. I feel like a broken record 😉   Anyway, tune in for another post later this week. Love you…mean it Kate