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Small Town Charm: Boerne, TX

Fashion, Style, Travel, Lifestyle, PackingCrystal JacksonComment

My sister and I took a much needed to trip to Boerne, TX back in September. I posted a few things already from the trip, but wanted to do a Small Town Charm post for a guide to the city. Boerne is one of the most adorable and charming cities I’ve ever seen. I really fell in love with it when I was driving back to Houston from Bandera this Summer. All throughout my twenties, I thought I would forever live in a big city. However, over the past three years, I’ve been drawn to a simpler setting. Boerne is on my top five list of beautiful small towns to live in.

We started the weekend off by renting a cabin from AirBnB. This is my second experience with it and I have to say, it’s really one of the best ways to travel. The hosts have excellent recommendations and go the extra mile to give you a place that has a homier feel than a hotel. If you want to see more pictures about the property we stayed at - you can check out this post. 

Where to Hike and Walk

I wrote and entire post about this here, but Cascade Caverns was such a highlight for us over the weekend. We spent an hour walking around the outdoor trails and then completed a 45-minute tour of the cave that took us 80 feet below. It was a really interesting historical lesson and a perfect way to beat the heat since it was in the nineties during our stay. There is camping and an RV park if you are looking to stay on the property. Plus, the drive out there is really lovely with all of the farm land and ranches surrounding. It’s also really close to Boerne’s downtown area.

Cibolo Creek Nature Center was the perfect place to stroll Sunday morning. The creek has a paved walkway along one side of it and stretches pretty far for you to take a stroll. The morning was filled with a layer of fog rising when I first embarked upon the trail, but quickly dissipated as the sun rose. The creek was really beautiful with trees acting as a canopy alongside the bank of the creek and there were ducks swimming all around.

Boerne also has a really lovely downtown right off the Cibolo Creek Nature Center. It's a perfect spot to grab coffee and then pop in and out of really cute shops. From vintage to old time themed stores, there is so many fun things to look at whether you are there to shop or not. It is a great place for an afternoon to just relax and leisurely walk. 

Where to Eat

We ate a variety of places but started both mornings off by grabbing a delicious Lavender White Chocolate Latte at Bear Moon Bakery Cafe. Located in the downtown block right off Cibolo Creek, you can grab a cup and then head over to walk along the water. They also had a variety of pastries and breakfast items. The staff was so friendly and the quality of their coffee was remarkable. If you are looking for a good brunch place, they have a full breakfast b on Sundays!

For lunch we had a perfect time at 259 Brantley’s Bistro. After a long walk at Cascade Caverns, my sister and I changed clothes and headed to the Bistro. We ordered a huge Farmer’s Board complete with fruit and cheese, the best Bread and Butter Texas Jalapeno Dip (with salami chips), and Fish Tacos. We also ordered fresh pink lemonade and a fruit bowl with crème fraiche. We ate until the feast was completely gone and then headed to do some vintage shopping.

On Saturday night we decided to visit the Cypress Grille for dinner. They have a really beautiful setting with warm wooden floors and high ceilings. We began the meal with a Warm Spinach Salad cranberries, gruyere and bacon sherry vinaigrette. Then, we ordered the Eggplant and Potato Lasagna which was so delicious! It had seasonal squash and Portobello mushrooms. A hearty, but vegetarian option. Finally, we decided the meal was complete without dessert. My sister ordered the Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee and I ordered the Warm Bittersweet Chocolate Cake. From the attentive service to the high quality food, the Cypress Grille did not disappoint.

What to Wear

For this trip, I brought an assortment of casual clothes. For a few outdoor activities I wore my DIY Cut Off Shorts with two different linen tops. I really love the look of the long sleeved and it’s lace up detailing. The second look was where I pulled out my Peter Grim straw hat and Hunter Rain Boots for an afternoon of hiking around.

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When I travel, I try to bring what packs easily and what I will be comfortable in. This off the shoulder top I found was perfect with a pair of simple flats for dinner at the Cypress Grille. Being that we didn’t take a lot of time to get dressed, I wore my hair in loose waves, pigtail braids or a simple top knot for a quick change. A lot of the time when I’m doing outdoor stuff, I just don’t take the time to get all dolled up. I’m all about what’s convenient for the activities we will complete.

Boerne ended up being such a beautiful place to visit with some of the nicest people. The waitstaff at each restaurant, our host and local shop owners were all so kind and helpful during our stay. We had the best time and had a chance to see so much throughout the weekend we were there. Hopefully, I'll get a chance to go back in the future, but if you are looking for a little weekend getway, Boerne's a great option outside of Austin and San Antonio!

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Rose Colored Accessories

Fashion, StyleCrystal JacksonComment
Shirt: American Eagle (similar) // Dress: Everleigh // Shoes: Ann Taylor (old, similar here) // Sunnies: Kenneth Jay Lane // Purse: Ted Baker (love this shape)

I love taking old pieces and making them new. Lately, I've been into all things preppy! From sweaters to loafers, I love how a preppy feel brings a back-to-school look to my Fall wardrobe. Fall is all about layering for me, and being in Houston I have to get pretty creative to achieve that. Today I pulled out a classic gingham button up (last seen here) and a simple navy dress (last seen here) to create this look. You can easily achieve this with a sheath or a round neck fit and flare dress.

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Another thing I'm really loving for Fall is the color rose. I was recently eyeing a pair of velvet rose colored shoes when I spotted them on Gal Meets Glam, but they were sold out in my size. As I stood in my closet surveying the inventory of shoes, I realized I had the pair worn here. I picked them up (sad to say YEARS ago) and wear them from time to time. Below are a few updated options when you Shop the Look. The ones I'm wearing a made out of suede, but I'd really like to find velvet or simple leather ones as well.

I also recently added a rose colored tote (not shown, but similar here). Rose is blush's best friend and one of the softer shades of pink. It mixes nicely with navy, pale blue, cream and chocolate if you are looking to pair it with anothercolor. When I wear rose I try to keep my makeup soft as well.. This lipstick is a great option and this blush is perfect to pair with a blush purse. If you aren't ready to go full on pink, adding rose to your makeup or accessories is a great option.

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Classic Black Layers

StyleCrystal JacksonComment
Top: Who What Wear for Target (similar here) // Pants: Express // Flats: Sam Edelman // Bag: Kate Spade // Sunnies: Betsey Johnson

I've posted so many casual things over the past few months I thought it would be a good time to get into the swing of a work/office related outfit. Although black is not a go-to color for me, I do like to bring out some of my black pieces during the Fall and Winter seasons. Black is classic and you just can't go wrong with how slimming it looks. I have been all about my red Kate Spade purse so far and decided to add pops of red to an otherwise neutral outfit. 

Lately, I've really been into wearing this lipstick in Siren in Scarlet. It's a great bold red that's not too pink, orange or bright. Usually I opt for a shimmer instead of a matte, but this shade of red is perfect for day without shine. 

I've had this pair of Express pants for years and still find that the fit and material are of the best quality. Finding a classic pair of trousers is a key item for work. I layered a soft floaty black top over it and simple gold earrings. I oftentimes wear my hair in a bun or top knot to the office on days I just don't feel like doing as much in the mornings. I'm going to try to get a new post up soon about how to do this - because it literally takes 1 min and you are good to go for the entire day.

Hope you are off to a Happy Monday!

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Modern Girl

Lifestyle, Inspiration, StyleCrystal JacksonComment

Today was just one of those days - started off with a flat tire, my conference bridge wasn't working, a client moved a meeting at the last minute and I spilled coffee down my dress. As I get older, I realize even though there are days you just don't want to adult you don't really get a choice anymore. Bills must be met, life must move forward, and even when you don't feel like it - you have to push through. I've been really inspired lately by surrounding myself with positive things. Whether it be words of encouragement, reading new material, or just picking out fresh flowers to keep around - it's really important to put out into the universe, what you are looking to receive. 

I've found that bad mornings do not have to turn into bad days. You can't just write off an entire 24 hour period just because you spill your coffee or get a flat tire. You have to put your big girl pants on (or dress) and swipe some red lipstick on to take on the rest of your day. For me, even when I feel my worst, putting on a great dress or nice lip color does something psychological to me. Coffee works wonders, too. I think the most glamorous women are the ones who walk with confidence. A red lip does just that for me. I don't wear a ton of makeup, but a good color lip goes a really long way.

Today I wore a few old classics - a leather jacket and sleek color block dress. The jacket was a gift from my parents years ago and it's simple shape is completely timeless (here is another one I love under $100). I've talked a lot about my quest for more neutrals in my wardrobe over the past few weeks, but this dress is a perfect example of a neutral color scheme but does not bore. The strategically placed black color blocking make the dress extremely slimming. I've found some others by Kensie here, here and here with a similar look and feel.

A while back I was given the advice to take an adult time out when you get overwhelmed. Sometimes five, fifteen or even thirty minutes makes a big difference on the rest of your day. That's precisely how I handled today. After the hectic morning I took a few breather minutes at lunch and returned refreshed. I was able to get more done in less time - and actually had more energy. Perspective is everything in life. I've been told, "Perception is reality." I'm not gonna lie, I didn't believe it when I first heard it. But, as you mature, so does your perspective. If you follow me on Instagram, you probably read a fantastic quote that really put a bad day in perspective. Life will throw curve balls, but that doesn't mean you throw in the towel, roll over and go back to bed. 

To balance the toughness of the leather jacket, I wanted to make sure I wore a more feminine shoe. A little bow can still look modern especially in a neutral. A nude shoe is probably my favorite. The color along with the shape of a pointy pump, elongates the leg. I've worn these a few times over the past few weeks here and here. These have a shorter heel height and are surprisingly comfy. 

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Healthy, Style, LifestyleCrystal JacksonComment

The weekends are for spending time outdoors. I've been under the weather, but I never let it stop me from a few minutes outside! I absolutely love to take time to get a breath of fresh air. We spend so much time inside staring at computer screens, watching TV (although I really don't), and go from one air-conditioned room to another... it's so good for the mind, body and soul to be in the great outdoors. 

I've been crushing on the LC Lauren Conrad collection at Kohl's. It started off innocently enough when I hit up the Thanksgiving weekend sales for Christmas, baby shower gifts and a few other necessities. The next thing I know - I was in love. Although this was top was purchased on major clearance (I mean under $10) - I've found a few others similar from her current season here, here and here.  This blouse will be perfect with a pencil or even a full midi skirt and a pair of adorable heels (like these) or over a pair of sleek pants, tucked in with a belt. It's soft creamy color with a hint of peach allows my skin to glow and not look washed out.

For someone who spends so much time wearing color, my quest for adding neutral pieces has really proved to be balancing. I recently dropped a little weight (as a result of being vegan and getting a consistent 4-5 miles of walking in every single day). I was kind of forced to pick up a few things that were work appropriate and would fit. In the past 90 days I've dropped a full two sizes. It's funny, I wasn't trying to diet... I just wanted to be a healthier and happier person. It wasn't in one day, one week or even one month. I consistently made healthy choices. I consistently took a walk at lunch. I consistently avoided eating animal products. Days turned into weeks and weeks turn into months. The next thing I knew - I was wearing a size XS again. 

Although I was never really "fat," I did notice since I've lost a little weight I feel more energetic. Maybe it's the amount of vitamins that I've put into my body or maybe it's the way I've handled stress, but something changed since last summer and I'm going to keep it going. Now I really look forward to those walks, to the delicious healthy food I eat and for time to meditate on why I love living. For the first time in years I can truly say I am happy every single day. Not a faking it sort of happy, I'm excited to get out of bed and live my life every day happy. 

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