Must Haves for Back to School

Some may already be back to school BUT for those in NJ, they still have some time to soak up the sun.  I honestly don’t know many who think back-to-school shopping is an exciting time of the year except those who graduated from crayons and glue sticks to a college campus!   I am sure many wish colleges and universities sent out a handy school supply shopping list like they did during the first 12 years of school.  This way we could put together the must-haves for those first time college students….

School in style

Good grades are important, but who said studying can’t be stylish, too? Whether you’re hitting the library, meeting a project group at a local coffee shop or running to class, there’s a Thirty-One bag for every student.

Are you a nothing-but-the-essentials kind of person? The Call Me Crossbody is the perfect size for your smartphone and a few cards when you’re on-the-go. If you need to pack a little more but still love the convenience of a hands-free bag, a Boutique Backpack can hold a few books, a water bottle, keys and more while also adding a chic pop to a casual outfit. And if you need to pack for a day’s worth of classes or need a work bag for your internship, the Around Town® Tote is perfect for books, folders and your laptop.

Dorm organization hacks

Space is limited in a college dorm room, so maximize every inch by investing in utility products which are durable, functional and come in the cutest prints.

Stow a Large Utility Tote  (LUT) under your bed to hold shoes or seasonal clothes that could take up space in your closet. With tons of prints available, from staple neutrals to whimsical cacti, you can match your LUT to your bedding or wall art. A Stand Tall Bin is the perfect size for a hamper or laundry basket, plus it comes in handy during move-in and collapses for easy storage. Guess what?  The Stand Tall Bin is on SALE this month.  Get TWO with a $35 purchase!  Finally, organize your desk or study space with a  Fold N’ FileTM, Double Duty® Caddy or Littles Carry-AllTM Caddy to hold documents, pens and office supplies.

Lunch break

You may not be packing PB&Js for the cafeteria anymore, but every busy college student needs to eat – and chances are you’ll be doing it on the go. Make snacking between classes a breeze with a lunch thermal that matches your personality. Choose a Thermal Tote in a bold, bright print or go for the Lunch Break Thermal Ltd. in elevated fabrics and finishes. With so many options, there’s a great lunch bag for every student.

Not your average backpack

You don’t have to leave your trusty backpack behind in grade school. In fact, when your classes and meetings are on opposite sides of campus, there’s no better way to stay organized and prepared than with a backpack for every occasion.

Heading over to the rec center for a quick workout? Grab a Cinch Sac or Sling-Back Bag to carry your water, headphones, deodorant and a change of clothes. Looking for something a little roomier for class? Go with the Adventures Backpack, complete with a thermal pocket for drinks and snacks, or the Crossbody Organizing Tote for organization on the go.

Weekend reset

After you’ve worked hard all week, it’s nice to have the weekend to relax, have fun and take some time for yourself. Whether it means staying on campus to hang out with your roommates or heading home to see your family for a few days, these stylish, versatile solutions will have you covered. Opt for an All About the Benjamins® wallet for a lunch date with friends, or choose a Retro Metro® Bag to bring along to the store or while running errands. If you like to spend your weekends at home, pack up an Away for the Weekender with all your overnight essentials.

What’s on your back to school shopping list? Can’t decide what bag will fit your needs, I’m happy to help you find the perfect solution for your organizing or back to school struggles.

Have a blessed day!

Travel Tips + Free Printable

I know Spring Break doesn’t come until mid-April BUT travel items are on sale in March at Thirty One.  I tend to be the proverbial last minute packer,  I always change my mind a zillion times before we finally leave for a trip. Between changes in the weather, my moods and what our plans will be while we are away – I pile all of the “maybes” together and then sort through them the day before.

I love to travel. When Belinda was younger, I used to spend weeks getting things together – snacks, clothes, accessories, etc.  I checked and double checked to make sure we didn’t forget anything.  Of course, we usually did.  Now traveling with hubby, I seem to do the same thing – planning out for some things since both of us have health issues but when it comes to clothes I wait till the last few days to get things together.  When I travel on my own, you will find me packing on the last day..

Here are some travel tips courtesy of “iheartnaptime.net“.  I use her free printable packing list so I don’t forget anything.

Tip 1: Fill a pill case with any medicines you might need and label them.  This is for all of those “just in case” medicines so you aren’t hunting for things while you are traveling.

Tip 2: Use a contact case to store smaller items like earrings. It also works great to fill with makeup, like foundation so you don’t need to bring the whole container.

 

Tip 3: Place a garbage sack in your suitcase to fill with dirty clothes. We have been know to use the plastic laundry bags from the hotel but I prefer to use a Thirty One large utility tote especially on a road trip!  Plop the bag in the car and just carry it right to the laundry room when you get home.

Tip 4: Place your necklaces between two pieces of sticky (plastic) wrap, so they don’t get tangled.  Then you can place them in Thirty One’s Fold Up Family Organizer.  Easy to pack AND it hangs up when you get to your destination.

Tip 5: Fill travel containers with shampoo and lotions. Then keep them in a bag in your suit case so it’s already packed.  This is so much cheaper than buying the travel size bottles, too.  I leave mine all ready to go in Thirty One’s Hanging Traveler Case.  It is even big enough to handle some full size bottles if you are traveling with the family.

Tip 6: Place a fabric softener sheet in your suitcase to keep everything smelling fresh and clean.

Tip 7: Place your shoes in a zip top bag to prevent dirt from getting on your clothes. OR use those throw plastic shower caps you can get at the dollar store.  Thirty One’s All Packed Duffle is a perfect solution for this since it has a separate compartment just for shoes!  So, it works for travel or for the gym.

Tip 8: Place your favorite snack bars (mine are Aloha bars or Graze snacks) in a snack bag on a  so you always have a tasty and healthy snack.  Check out Thirty One’s NEW Coastal Carry All which is a great alternative.  It has a wipeable interior and can hold up to 8 beach towels.  So when you unpack all of the goodies, you can use it to head to the beach or pool

 

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Thirty One’s March Customer Special offers you 50% off select travel items when you spend $35.  You can get one item on sale for every $35 you spend!  Gather some friends together either in your home, at a local happy hour, on Facebook or just have a texting party……. to get some FREE products along with a great HOSTESS SPECIAL which includes the Around the Town Tote and an All About the Benjamin wallet! 

The NEW Spring Summer catalog is out too so be sure to click the link, fill out the simple survey and get your copy along with a coupon on your order.

 

Bonus: Print out a packing list from “iheartnaptime” to keep track of everything. It is a HUGE help for me.

Source: 10 Essential Travel Tips + Free Printable Packing List – I Heart Nap Time

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

How To Add Some Happy to Your Day

The last few weeks have been an emotional roller coaster.  Over the last several months, I have been facing “reality” in many areas of my life.

MS struggles seem to have increased with wobbly days, brain fog and a wide range of mood swings.  I have faced addiction relapse issues and am again fighting some inner gremlins. The lack of sun in Jersey hasn’t helped much either.  I know it is January and winter is here BUT a few days of bright sunshine would definitely help!

Okay, so I am rambling but it brings me to a list of things YOU can do to give yourself a boost.  Let’s get those HAPPY endorphins  moving.

1.  Go for a walk.  If you feel like chatting, ask a coworker, friend, or family member to join you!  I know it is a little chilly outside for this so why not head to the mall.  My favorite is walking up and down the aisles of Walmart just to get out!

2.  Be kind.  Pick a day and do one to five random acts of kindness.  They can range from feeding someone’s parking meter or complimenting a coworker. How about leaving a piece of chocolate for someone? Or even a simple thank you when they hold the door for you.  It can be just what another person needs to see to turn their day around—and how you can start a karmic shift!

3. Listen to your favorite song. Music can decrease anxiety experienced by patients before surgery, according to a study in the journal, Anesthesia & Analgesia. If tunes can calm pre-op jitters, surely they can help you find your zen place.

4. Count your blessings. People with a more grateful outlook on life tend to exhibit a heightened state of wellbeing, according to a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Researchers concluded “gratitude is linked with positive emotions including contentment, happiness, and hope.” At some point during the day, make a simple list of five or ten things you are grateful for in your life.

5. Take a breath. Take one minute today and focus on your breath with your eyes closed. A full minute.  I have to set a timer to make sure I am not rushing through this.  You will be amazed at how this can change your outlook.

6. Stroke an animal, like a cat or dog. If you don’t have a pet, go on YouTube and watch a funny animal video.  I know I am not the only one who scrolls through those YouTube videos, right?

Life is what you make it – if you focus on the negative, you will get negativity.  If you focus on the positive (no matter how small), it will come your way.  There are days I struggle to find the good and something to be grateful for.  It in on the days I beat myself up the worst, I work hard to find my happy place.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

How to Dress Up Your Jeans

I am a total jeans girl.  I’m not sure when it started…. It could be because of the “jiggle thighs” so dresses and weight weight fabrics and I don’t agree.  Maybe it is because I no longer enjoy shopping and trying on clothes (GASP!)
After a summer of dressing in capris and yoga pants with LONG tops, I am ready for the arrival of fall and the crisp air. Okay, so the colder weather I am not a fan of BUT I do love my jeans and boots.   With the comfort of jeans comes the age old question: How can you dress up your jeans and feel fashionable when you head out for work, a day with your girlfriends or a night on the town?  Yup, I struggle with this all of the time.  The answer is in the accessories which is what changes your basic denim to a fashion statement!
I love some of these ideas from the staff and designers at Thirty One.

Get your jeans party-ready with smart evening accessories

When choosing jeans for evening, it’s important to start with the right silhouette. Luckily, two denim cuts leading the way for fall are flattering on all body types – especially in a dark, saturated wash.

Your tried-and-true skinny jeans are as hot as ever and look great balanced with flowy, feminine tops. Layer on a long necklace, drop earrings and stacked bracelets for some nighttime sparkle.

In addition to skinny jeans, you’ll also see more trouser-like silhouettes this season. This cut gives you some creative leeway with opportunities to rock key details like contrast stitching, polished hardware and chic pleats. As a general rule, trouser-style jeans look best paired with a more fitted top tucked in.

Finish off your party look by dressing up your jeans with the perfect pair of shoes: Pumps add evening elegance and take both skinny and trouser jeans up a notch.

Dress your jeans for a professional setting

If you are wearing jeans to the office,, you want a pulled together professional look.  Work-appropriate jeans are usually the  darker wash the better – or try one of the dressy, deep-hued colored washes big this fall.  No, frayed or distressed jeans, or jeans with embellishments like studs.  A closed-toe pump is a solid choice for work, as is a pointy-toe flat if you’re on your feet a lot. Then add a tucked-in button-up shirt in a crisp white or a soft pastel or stripe. Roll up the sleeves a bit to show off a bracelet or add a blazer for a quick easy way to complete the look.

Be strategic with pops of color and NEVER more than one eye-grabbing pattern per outfit. A foolproof accessory is a lightweight, rectangular Avenue Scarf or one of the many accessories offered in Thirty One’s  Bright & Bold collection.

Since we often carry a laptop between the office and home, the new Colorblock Tote is a great option. Its structure and smaller scale make it office-worthy while still providing the roominess you need.

 

Ladies who lunch (or brunch!)

For a day of brunching and shopping with your gal pals, start with a pair of high-waisted skinnies and patterned flats. Add a dressy tunic or feminine peasant top in one of the deliciously rich hues that the Pantone Fashion Color Trend Report for Fall/Winter 2018 says will be big this year, like Red Pear, Martini Olive, Ultra Violet or Quetzal Green.

For holding all your finds while browsing those markets and boutiques, we love a statement bag like our slouchy but structured Around Town Tote. These bags come in an equally scrumptious palette of solids and patterns to pull your whole look together, and you can add your personal stamp with a monogram or Icon-It.

Dress up for date night

Date night with your special someone? Try a sophisticated pair of trouser jeans in a dark wash. Fall fashion shows in the spring were also showing tuxedo stripes on jeans, which is another fun way to dress up your denim look for evening.

Dressing up your jeans with a peep-toe bootie/sandal hybrid with a chunky heel is perfect for transitioning between seasons, and you can switch to a full bootie later. You’ll want a fitted top so you can layer on a leather-look moto jacket, and then bling out the whole ensemble with a statement necklace, earrings and a bracelet or two. Think small for your bag; choose something like a wristlet or clutch for your phone and lipstick and such. Remember: For evening, it’s all about the fun details.

Need some ideas? Try our best-selling All About the Benjamins wallet with a matching Wristlet Strap, then dress up your whole outfit with an on-trend Fringed and Fabulous Necklace and a pair of shiny Luxe Loop Dangles earrings.

Whether you’re heading to work, a day out with friends or a night on the town, have fun dressing up your jeans for a casual yet ultra-chic look. And be sure to check out all the amazing handbags and accessoriesThirty-One Gifts has designed to help you bring out your own personal style!

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Tote-Ally Awesome Fall

 

I know there is a mixed batch of feelings this morning.  Some are jumping up and down celebrating the fact TODAY is the day kids go back to school.  Some mommas are crying to see their babies go off to school for the first time.  I used to always struggle with the first day “back to school” when Belinda was younger.  I was grateful for the routine her being in school brought but I missed the togetherness we had during the summer.

So, this is the perfect time for some “ME” time. I know, you are thinking… “I have NO time”. Money is tight –  school supplies and clothes cost a fortune!

What if I told you, you could earn some money to pay those school shopping credit card bills AND save some money to pay CASH for those holiday gifts?  What if you could earn money while chauffeuring the kids to activities (NO, I don’t mean an Uber driver) or sitting at the field while they practice?  What would you do with an extra $300? Or are you looking for some time away from the kids?  Maybe you just want to shop at a 40% discount and earn FREE products?  Yup, I have an answer to all of those questions….

First, there is the two options on the enrollment kit.  You can use it to kick off your business or you can do your holiday shopping in one easy step.  If you decide to kick off your business (of course I will help you); you can not only earn 25% commission BUT you can also earn FREE products or Disney Bucks or Visa Gift Cards.  I know, crazy, right???

If earning some money, gift cards or free product doesn’t sound good……….. you could be a  hostess and get some FREE and discounted products.  I know, still no time, right?

What if I said YOU could get some ME time AND some FREE products at the same time?  Say what???  How about you and 3 friends join me for coffee (my treat)? Or lunch at your favorite restaurant?  Working and can’t get away?  What if I parked my car in the parking lot and everyone came to check out my “trunk” to see all of the goodies on their lunch break?  Are you a social media junkie?  What if you just carried a catalog with you and sent all of your friends to an online Facebook party?

With Thirty One’s September Customer Special you (or your friends) can pick YOUR favorite product to get a discount on!  I have all THREE of these products and absolutely LOVE them.  No, I don’t have to say it because I am a consultant, I say it because I use all 3 of them!  The Colorblock Tote in Olive has become my everyday bag.  The Around Town Tote, I use when going to meetings along with my Super Swap it Pocket.  The All About the Benjamin Wallet is one of our top sellers over and over again.  Here is what you can earn in the month of September just by sharing your favorite products with friends and family: 

So whether you live near me or you just follow my blog or are Facebook friends, we can party together so YOU can get some FREE products.  Trust me, I have heard it all…. no one buys when I have a party, no one comes when I have a party…..Why?  Because they figure it is the same “sales pitch” all of the time.  What if you had a theme or I could show you some simple solutions to make your crazy life a little easier?  Think about it…. what could it hurt especially with a Facebook party.  You invite your friends and I do all of the work.    What do you say…

Okay, I know some of you just like to shop!  You have already gotten your fall catalog, circled what you want and are ready to place your order.   So, click the link and head to my website and place your order.  WHAT?  You don’t have a catalog to circle your favorite items in? Click the catalog on the right hand side to request your copy!  I’m going to squirrel for a moment… Do you remember getting the Sears (or Toys R Us) Christmas catalog and going through circling everything you wanted Santa to bring?  I know I am dating myself BUT you can do the same thing with your catalog.  Then give it your hubby, your significant other, your kids or whoever buys you gifts.  I will help to make sure YOU get the gift you want for your birthday, anniversary or the holidays.

So, whether you are interested in starting a business, getting free products or just do a little shopping…..I want to be your “bag lady”.  No job is too big or too small…..

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!