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Still going strong with hardly any clothing purchases this year. Although I did get to do some clothing shopping with Christian. He needed a new suit so we went through the process of trying a bunch on, picking one, getting it altered and getting new shoes. So I was able to scratch my shopping itch! 

 

THE (modified) RULES

  1. Be mindful of purchases 
  2. Quality over quantity
  3. Basics are best

 

MY PROGRESS

 

Clothes:

  1. None


Basics:
  1. None

 

Shoes:

  1. None

 

Handbags:

  1. None

 

Accessories:
  1. None

 
 

Activewear/Swimwear:

  1. Colorfulkoala High Waisted Yoga Pants with Pockets in Deep Teal ($20, retail $30, used CC rewards)

 

Gifted from Brands:

  • None


Spent in March: $0

Spent in 2024: $0

Spent in 2024 - counting ad money: $0

Happy Pi Day! No pies in today's roundup but I do have a circle citrus cake and some cookies, haha! I will be making a pizza for dinner though, so I think that counts as celebrating, don't you think? For those that do not know, Pi Day celebrates the math symbol π. It is on 3/14 because the first numbers of Pi are 3.14 (do not ask me to name the rest) Back in elementary and middle school days we celebrated with pies, pizzas and other round items. I think one year for extra credit I made a pi-day themed quilt. Ahh to be young and carefree again!



Ombré Citrus Cake

I've had this recipe from Turkuaz Kitchen saved for a year and finally made it! Betul's recipes are always beautiful and her Instagram videos are so soothing. This recipe was super easy to make but I was scared about it coming out as pretty as hers. I actually made two because I had a lot of orange slices. Techically didn't have enough of the blood orange syrup for both cakes, but that's okay! Half of it is supposed to be served on top as a drizzle when served so I just skipped that step. Next time I may try to make the slices thinner so I can use more for each cake.



Heart Shaped Layered Peanut Butter Crunch Brownies 

I made this as a very special Valentine's Day dessert! I slightly modified it by leaving off the cacao nibs and putting m&ms in the brownie. It took a LONG time to bake in the heart shaped pan so the outside came out really cripsy and the inside was undercooked with a large hole in the center. (I stopped cooking it after an hour, haha...the recipe says 25-27 minutes for a normal pan and that it would be "slightly longer" for the heart shaped pan...) So while I'm a little disappointed in the bake of the brownie the flavors were great! I don't mind undercooked brownie but the hard as a rock exterior was not my favorite. Next time I'll just use a normal pan.



Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

I always forget I have oats so I decided to whip up some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. I went with the recipe in Tessa's Ultimate Cookie Handbook. For me it was a little too oaty, next time I might do less oats and more chocolate chips. The flavor was great though, I love the spice level from the cinnamon. 


2 Hour Fastest No Knead Bread

If you've been around long enough you'll know I constantly make this bread recipe for our lunches. This time I did a slight variation and did a cup of whole wheat flour and the rest regular flour. It added a nice bit of nuttiness! Next time I might go for 2 cups and see how that is! 


 

Brown Butter Blueberry Muffins

Another bake I come back to time and again. It's so easy and tasty. I used frozen wild blueberries instead of normal sized because I prefer them small. I also chilled the batter overnight before baking to help them puff up and be extra tall (the recipe says to put frozen blueberries in after this step, but I do it before because I don't mind if they turn blue.)



 

Chocolate Truffles

I had some leftover heavy cream to use up and in addition to making some "cream" biscuits that I forgot to take a photo of, I also made some delicious truffles. I didn't really need a recipe but decided to try Tessa's. Hers was interesting because there is a little corn syrup in it to help thicken them.  After rolling them out I covered them in sprinkles and coconut. I should have done more with coconut but wasn't sure we would like the combo. Spoiler alert - we did!



The weather has been all over the place lately. One day its freezing and windy (here) another it's 60 degrees and I'm enjoying the park! This outfit was all about being cozy for an 8 year old's birthday party. Even though it was chilly outside I decided to wear these mules to add some fun to the look, the party was inside, after-all! I've been favoring my easier to wear jeans but decided to make a statement with these patchwork jeans from Free People.


Purple Coat: Greylin Longline Shirt Jacket in purple (Anthropologie)

Sweater: Abercrombie & Fitch

Jeans: Free People 'Jax' Patchwork Jeans

Shoes: Splendid Harvest Mules in Tiger/Cheetah Print (eBay)

FlatSocks /co

Sunglasses: Gucci Aviators (bought in Rome)

Hat: Kensington Palace gift shop









 

 


Another month with no clothing purchases. These posts are getting a little boring, no? But I'm going to keep up with them because I think it's good to show that you don't always need to buy new clothes and can shop your own closet. We need to break the fast fashion cycle where people are buying new wardrobes every few months. For most of my later blogging years I have tried to go with the less is more approach and only add items that I know will last. Occasionally I will still buy a crazy piece I'm not sure of just to try it out, but I try to avoid that.


THE (modified) RULES

  1. Be mindful of purchases 
  2. Quality over quantity
  3. Basics are best

 

MY PROGRESS

 

Clothes:

  1. None


Basics:
  1. None

 

Shoes:

  1. None

 

Handbags:

  1. None

 

Accessories:
  1. None

 
 

Activewear/Swimwear:

  1. Colorfulkoala High Waisted Yoga Pants with Pockets in Deep Teal ($20, retail $30, used CC rewards)

 

Gifted from Brands:

  • None


Spent in February: $0

Spent in 2024: $0

Spent in 2024 - counting ad money: $0

I really need to start wearing all my blazers again. I have so many and can't get rid of them because they all hold such special memories and are just plain pretty! I mostly stopped wearing them because I don't go out to many "events" these days and wearing a blazer to the grocery store on the weekend feels funny. But I'm just going to go for it now! They're outerwear, so they're practical for this chilly weather This is one of my more recent blazers, bought for $36 in early 2019. Probably one of my last blazer purchases because I made myself stop buying them.


Blazer: Sandro burgundy double breasted blazer (Roundabout Resale)

Striped Top: Splendid 'Duke' striped pullover c/o Shopbop

Jeans: Everlane high-rise skinny jean in mid-blue

Ankle Boots: Candie's "ChiChi" Faux Suede Platform Heeled Boots c/o Kohl's 

Bag: Dark Purple Chloé Faye (eBay)




 

Warmth is very important in the Winter and we're in the thick of it now. I've been wanting to get additional padding for my favorite winter boots for a few years now and kept putting it off. I finally found my solution in these fuzzy liner socks from Flat Socks! They are like insoles for your shoes but in sock material and they're washer/dryer safe, even these fur ones. This keeps the inside of your shoes clean. To learn more about how to use these liner socks check out my post on them from last year! Can you tell I'm wearing socks in this Instagram post? Well, I am!

 

While these are meant to replace socks I've been using them more as extra warmth for this particular pair of boots and I still wear socks with them.  The extra padding makes my feet super cozy and I love how soft they are. I even have a pair of arch support insoles under the liner socks to make them even more comfortable for long Winter walks or while shoveling snow.



Sweater: Everlane "The Wool-Cashmere Square Crew" in Crimson

Jeans: Current/Elliott (The Outnet)

Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs 'Perfect Purse ostrich-effect PVC' (Net-a-Porter sale)

Hat: Disney World

Sunglasses: Chanel

Necklace: Indulgems (Gilt)  

Boots: Vintage Snowland Moccasin Ankle Boots (from Grandma - another pair)

Chestnut Faux Fur FLAT SOCKS c/o













*This post was made in partnership with Responsival.*



 

Lots of Christmas weekend bakes in this one! Plus two more recipes I've had on my "to bake" list for a bit. Almost everything came out exactly as I'd hoped! Love when that happens.

 

Mille Feuille

I wanted to make something other than Christian's pie (below) for Christmas Eve and remembered we had frozen puff pastry I've been meaning to use. I googled and found this recipe for mille feuille (or napoleons, except this isn't almond flavored.) Objectively a simple recipe, but still messy and time consuming, ha ha! The diplomat cream was a little loose so they slid around a bit by the time I took the final photo, but they were a hit! Everyone that ate one said they were delicious. I don't like pastry cream so I didn't have one. We have some leftover cream and egg whites I need to use up too...

Not as pretty later in the evening, haha!

 

Lemon Raspberry Pie + King Arthur Flaky Pastry Dough

This was Christian's Christmas Eve bake, but I helped a bit so including it anyway ;) The pie dough didn't come out right but I'm not sure what he did wrong since his pie crusts are usually good. Perhaps the instructions for the recipe were weird or he didn't cut in the butter enough. But the filling of the pie was very tasty even though that recipe was a little all over the place too, ha ha! 



Cinnamon Babka

I made chocolate babka earlier this year (and again this weekend) and wanted to try my hand at cinnamon for our Christmas morning breakfast. The recipe was from America's Test Kitchen, the same place I got the chocolate one from but the method was very different. Mine didn't come out looking how I hoped - the filling melted into the bread more than it was supposed to and there was a lot of it at the bottom of the loaf. If I make this again I may double the filling or see if I can find a recipe that uses a different rolling/twisting method. It still tasted great!

 

Chocolate Babka

As mentioned above I already made this once, but it deserves another mention because its so tasty! And pretty easy to make, even if its a bit messy! It was a hit on Christmas morning and kept us all stuffed until early afternoon at Grandma's.


Chocolate Mousse Cake

I had some leftover heavy cream from all my Christmas baking so I decided to make a recipe I had saved back in October to use it up. This was my first time making a mousse and a layered dessert of this type. It was easier than I thought it would be but also a little nerve wracking. My ganache was a little bit oon the thin side but other than that it came out great! (I'm annoyed because I KNEW it was thin and I was doing a time lapse video and didn't want to stop it to add more chocolate...grr!)


 

Lemon Blueberry Loaf

I knew I was most likely going to have an extra lemon after baking Saucy Chicken Picatta meatballs for dinner one night so I decided to try and make this loaf! Before using the lemon for dinner I zested it for this recipe and had just enough juice left over as well. I like small, wild blueberries so I used some frozen ones to make this and I think next time I'll use a few less because it was a bit more blueberry dense than it would have been if I used normal size berries. It affected he cooking time a bit because of the extra bulk. But, even with the extra cooking time it was delicious! A perfect breakfast for cold winter mornings.



The first month of 2024 is already done, wow! This year I'm not planning on making too many clothing purchases, but I will continue to do my roundups because I can't stop now, ha ha! This will be my TENTH year tracking my clothing spending and it's funny looking back at my older posts where I would spend a couple hundred a month. My first recap post was March 2014 and it was the month I bought my beloved Carven map print dress! I've definitely gotten my $300 worth out of that dress, with lots more more life left in it.

 

Paragraph added before the end of the month since I prepared this early, haha! Amazon was having a sale on some leggings I like so I used credit card rewards to buy another pair. The first pair I bought was for my runDisney Cheshire Cat outfit.


THE (modified) RULES

  1. Be mindful of purchases 
  2. Quality over quantity
  3. Basics are best

 

MY PROGRESS

 

Clothes:

  1. None


Basics:
  1. None

 

Shoes:

  1. None

 

Handbags:

  1. None

 

Accessories:
  1. None

 
 

Activewear/Swimwear:

  1. *NEW!* Colorfulkoala High Waisted Yoga Pants with Pockets in Deep Teal ($20, retail $30, used CC rewards)

 

Gifted from Brands:

  • None


Spent in January: $0

Spent in 2024: $0

Spent in 2024 - counting ad money: $0


 

 

It's been a while since I did one of these roundup posts so I thought I would do it with some newer pieces!  A couple pieces from pre-2017 also made the cut. We've got a mix of sweaters, jeans and one blouse. I'm a firm believer in wearing what you have and loving it to death. While some of these pieces are newer and haven't had the number of wears some other items in my closet have, they are well on their way! Gotta get that cost per wear down as far as it will go. Almost like a competition!

 


I took a somewhat unplanned trip to Disney World at the beginning of January. After our December trip and being sad that Christian and I wouldn't be back until February, my friend jokingly said "you're welcome to join me Marathon weekend." Don't have to tempt me twice, haha! Sadly I had to leave Christian at home because he didn't want to take days off work.



We were originally staying at Pop Century Resort, old faithful, but a week before the trip we saw our dates pop up on a DVC Rental Facebook group for Disney's Old Key West Resort. We paid $865 for 4 nights by renting DVC points versus $2,043 booking directly through Disney. It ended up being cheaper than our Pop Century cost!

 


 

This resort was one of the lower on my list because it's a bit far from some of the parks and isn't in a theme I'm super excited about. But I'm glad I finally stayed here because I do want to stay at all the Disney World Resorts at some point. 

 

Since the resort is so big, we got to take a golf cart to our room with our luggage so we didn't have to lug it the whole way to the room. You can also request this service on your checkout day as well.  They carts are a little noisy but it was so fun! It's the little things, I guess, ha ha.

 


 

The rooms are in small buildings that house a few rooms each. We were on the second floor of our building. Be warned, there are no elevators at this resort so if you need accessibility accommodations make sure you let that be known. The ice stations are also not part of the buildings. We saw some at the various bus stops and I believe I read there are some by the pools as well.



Transportation

Buses

The main form of transportation besides driving yourself or using rideshare is buses. Because the resort is so big there is an internal bus loop as well as buses to the parks. The bus stops are as follows:

  • Peninsular Road
  • Old Turtle Pond Road (this was our stop!)
  • South Point
  • Miller’s Road
  • Hospitality House / North Cove

Heading to the parks the bus stops in the above order, the same with returning from the parks. If you're coming from Disney Springs it will stop at the hospitality house first on the way back. It takes around 10-15 minutes to do the internal loop through Disney's Old Key West Resort. Once the bus leaves the resort at the Hospitality House, it takes about 10-15 minutes to arrive at Epcot or Disney's Hollywood Studios and 15-20 minutes to arrive at Magic Kingdom Park or Disney's Animal Kingdom Park.


 


Boat

Heading to Disney Springs? There's a boat dock by the hospitality building that will take you over to the Marketplace entrance of Disney Springs. There are also buses, but if you want a more fun ride, and have some time to kill, take the boat. It takes about 15 minutes once you're on a boat.

 

Walking

It is also possible to walk to Disney Springs from the resort. It is a little over a mile and a quarter (1.3 to be exact) and you'll be walking along the water. This trail, called Conch Flats Trail, will take you to the entrance near near Cirque du Soleil.


Dining


Olivia's Cafe

Olivia's is well known for their tasty breakfast, more specifically their buttermilk fried chicken. I had only ever heard good things so I was very excited for our breakfast. Unfortunately, I should have looked at photos before ordering because the breakfast version came with a huge ladle full of southern gravy on it that wasn't listed on the menu. It was listed for the "lunch" version so I assumed that meant it wasn't on breakfast. I didn't want to make a big deal so I scraped it off the best I could but was left a little unsatisfied because I lost a lot of the crispy breading. The Olivia's Breakfast Potatoes also weren't what I was expecting, I assumed a dry seasoned potato but they had a sauce. So make sure you look at photos to make sure you'll enjoy the offerings. I'll get the pancakes next time, haha!

 

Good's Food to Go


This was Caleb's go to spot for breakfast and late dinners. I actually didn't end up eating here at all because I wanted to save for snacks and breakfast in the park (and when we had dinner at the hotel I ate somewhere else.) Next time I'll make sure to grab something from here too. The breakfast did look very good, I just wanted my Cheshire cat tail from Magic Kingdom instead, haha! They stay open until 10pm if you need a quick bite after a long park day!


Gurgling Suitcase Libations and Spirits

This is mainly a bar but on one of our evenings I got the Savory Hushpuppies which are also available at Olivia's. I opted for no key lime mustard on mine. They were very good, I even brought a few home for Christian to try and they traveled pretty well. It was a little pricey at $14 since I also had to tip the bartender even though I just grabbed them for takeout. They are usually open until 11pm, but hours may vary.


Turtle Shack Poolside Snacks

We did not eat here on our stay but they have basic food items as well as a bar. Grab a pizza, sandwich or even a cheese board while you relax by the pool.


Recreation

Pools

We did not take advantage of any pools on our trip, but there are three "leisure" pools in the Old Turtle Pond, South Point and Miller’s Road sections. There is also the feature pool, aptly called Sandcastle Pool because it has a huge sandcastle slide.


Sporting Activities

Old Key West also has Tennis and Pickleball courts, a basketball court AND a volleyball court for those wanting some fun competition during their stay.  The Lake Buena Vista golf course is also visible from the Resort grounds. More information including how to book a tee time can be found on the Disney website.


Fishing

If you want to do a little fishing you can pay for a 2-hour or 4-hour excursion. According to the Disney website you can choose from Guided Bass Fishing Excursions that can accommodate up to 5 Guests, and a tournament-style NITRO® bass fishing boat for up to 3 Guests. Excursions include a guide, rod and reel, tackle and bait.


Activities

As with other Disney hotels there are various activities to take part in. Campfires with s'mores, movies under the stars and much more! Be sure to check at the lobby to see what types of fun they are hosting while you're there.




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