How to get designer styles at bargain prices


By Amy Moore (guest blogger)

I used to shop for clothes and accessories almost exclusively at retail stores, but that all changed when I embarked on a health journey and lost 70 pounds. In the process, I went from plus-size clothing (1X, size 18-20) to a size 6, which meant that I had to replace both my work and casual wardrobe multiple times.

To save money, I started shopping at Goodwill and Salvation Army and found a few good deals on brands that I normally wear. But it wasn’t until I found some amazing resale shops that I finally embraced second-hand shopping. I still get to look stylish, and I enjoy the fact that I never know what I’m going to find!

Here are three local stores that I haunt frequently:

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How not to procrastinate the way fall 2017 did


By Abby and Elle

Abby wearing fall outfitNow that the leaves have changed colors, we feel like fall has finally arrived. That got us thinking about procrastination and how easy it is to put things off. (This blog post has been on our to-do list for two weeks!) We decided the problem wasn’t with us; it was with our to-do list. (Phew, we’re still perfect!)

So we are now thinking about and managing our list in a different way to prevent us from procrastinating and experiencing the dread associated with a to-do list that goes from baby to monster in just a few days.

Here’s the simple solution that we know works because you’re reading this post!  Continue reading

School days, school days, dear old Golden Rule days


By Elle

When I was an adolescent and pre-teen, my limited wardrobe consisted mainly of patched jeans and rock concert t-shirts, and because I went to public schools, that’s what I wore. Although I didn’t mind (and probably preferred it at the time), I’ve always been smitten with the look of school uniforms: perfectly pleated plaid skirts, crisp white collared shirts, neat cardigans and loafers to tie it all together. So when I bought this black and white schoolgirl skirt at a thrift store recently, I began to reflect on education and how lucky we in this country are to have access to schools. Continue reading

Starfish and Coffee


By Abby

My daughter fawning over a pink purse.

My daughter entered pre-school this fall, so naturally I’m getting to know other moms from my area. One mother in particular, a kindred spirit, told me about a local coffee shop. I like to support local businesses so I dropped by one afternoon and fell in love, even before I opened the door. Continue reading

Rainy days and Mondays


By Elle
I felt guilty for wishing for a rainy day recently, in light of the deadly storms in the U.S., all because I was itching to try out my new rain boots. So on a recent Friday, I woke up to dark skies and rain, and jumped at the opportunity to slip into my boots. After the rainy morning turned into a warm, sunny day, I took the afternoon off and met my daughter and two of my granddaughters at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, where they both quickly earned animal-inspired nicknames. Continue reading

Rice balls and fall trends


By Elle

With the (oddly) cooler temps this week, I was excited to pull this silky Asian-inspired jacket out of my closet. I’ve long loved Asian design, and most rooms in my house feature some piece of Asian art or a Buddha, some of them gifts from our Japanese exchange students we hosted many, many years ago.

I still remember the day our first student, Kumiko, entered our home. She knew about as much English as I currently know Spanish. In other words, I know a lot of random words but am hard pressed to form a sentence any Spanish-speaking person would understand. Dios mio, it was a rough few weeks! We engaged in a lot of hand gestures and arm waving. And it wasn’t until she knew the English words for vacuum cleaner that she could fully explain how her family saved her grandmother from choking to death on a glutinous rice ball. True story.  (And if you don’t know how that could happen — the choking part, I mean — you’ve never eaten a glutinous rice ball.) Continue reading