5 Must-Have Jackets for Spring

It’s March! That means spring is on the way – and there are SO many cute jackets out in stores that will be the perfect accessory and welcome to warmer weather while combating those spring showers.  Here are a few of the pieces I’m shopping for spring!Adorable Jackets for Spring - the bee lifeShop the Jackets: Perfect Rain Jacket from J.Crew $85-60 | Hooded Wind Breaker from Old Navy $49.99 | Drapey Open Trench Coat from Nordstrom Rack $29.97Polka Dot Denim Jacket form Loft $89.50 

The perfect rain jacket from J.Crew comes in an array of colors that just scream spring you’ll have a hard time deciding which color to pick! I love the blush pink, but also think bright yellow would be a welcome way to combat the grey skies.  Oh, and these are on sale at J.Crew – right now!

The hooded wind breaker from Old Navy makes me want to go for a run! This sporty jacket is perfect for running errands on the weekends, heading to the gym or taking your pup for a walk.  Again, the color options for these is hard to pick just one, although the navy is classic the Oceanside green color makes a fun statement.

Okay – bargain alert! The trench from Nordstrom Rack is a must order – it’s a sexy coat that will dress up any look and will be especially perfect for date night!  The soft colors it comes in are also the perfect compliment to spring pastels.

Last but not least, I love a good denim jacket and this adorable piece from Loft is the perfect twist on a classic look with the subtle polka dot accents that make you do a double take. This jacket will also transition perfect into summer and fall, since denim jackets never get old.
Adorable Jackets for Spring (2) - the bee life
As if you weren’t looking forward to spring already, don’t these jackets just make you want it now?! Make sure you use a few promo codes to get these adorable looks on sale (so you can get more than one!)

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Local Love: Brewnuts

One of our favorite local spots is a donut shop with a bar!  Brewnuts was a much anticipated donut shop that teased locals with gorgeous gourmet donuts on their amazing instagram, custom orders and limited releases until opening their shop late summer of 2017, which has been a favorite since – especially with their colorful and trendy decor.

Brewnuts has a weekly rotating menu of unique, classic and seasonal flavors paired with fun events throughout the year around movie releases (like Jurassic Park), latest trends (Harry Potter day), holidays (Friendsgiving) and Cleveland centric sporting events.  In addition to cool events and tasty donuts, you can get great local beers which are also often times included in the donut recipes themselves! Whether you just want one donut or are going for a half dozen (which I highly recommend doing) you can’t go wrong, with impressive flavor line-ups it’s hard choosing just one!

A few of my favorite donuts to date include; the Animal Cracker Fry Cake (heavenly), their signature Strawberry Sprinkle and Maple Bacon and Vegan Cookie dough.  Lately when we stop in, in addition to grabbing a dozen donuts I’ve been ordering a mimosas and B usually grabs a beer or Bloody Mary, yum!! The best part is if you can’t stick around, the donuts taste just as good at home as they do at the shop.  In addition to having an awesome menu at their brick and mortar location, Brewnuts also does custom letter orders or private events like weddings – and they have gold glittery donuts… *swoon*

If you’re ever in town, have friends visiting, or simply just because, this is an awesome spot to try something different and fun and support a local Cleveland business. The donuts are big enough to share, but also not too big to finish one yourself! Brewnuts is our new go-to post-race spot and is the perfect spot for a little celebration.  Be sure to check out Brewnuts on instagram so you can swoon over their donuts and get the latest scoop on upcoming events and menu updates!

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Bee’s Pre-Vacation Checklist

Not a great planner? Well I wanted to share my Pre-Vacation checklist with you in case you needed a little help when you’re getting ready for your next trip – there are so many things that need to get coordinated, from pet sitters, bills, work and all the last minute things you forget about!  Here are 6-easy things things to help you stay organized and get all the things done before you go!
Bee's Pre Vacation Checklist - the bee life
(1) Schedule your Mani & Pedi 2-3 Days Before Departure.  I love having a fresh mani and pedi for major life events and vacations! So for me it’s crucial, and something to schedule closer to your departure date so you can ensure your nails stay un-chipped and vacation ready,

(2) Get Your Spa Appointments in the Week Before.  Depending on what kind of vacay you’re having or where you’re going.  Whether it’s getting a nice base tab with a spray tan, getting a fresh haircut, or a bikini wax for the beach! Make sure to space these out or get them scheduled a week or so before vacay.  Remember – you don’t want to be too busy right before you leave, because that won’t help with the stress!

(3) Plan Your Outfits Ahead of Time.  It might feel like it’s too soon to pack but setting aside outfits two or three weeks ahead of time will help you fill in the blanks if needed! This also saves time of doing loads and loads of laundry just before you leave for that last minute piece you decided to wear – not to mention if you need to go shop for anything you’ll have time to make sure you have a vacation ready wardrobe.

(4) Organize Your Confirmation Codes & Reservation Details.  It’s important to get all your reservation details organized into a central place that will be easy to reference on the road – that means your flight numbers, rental car and hotel check-in.  I like doing a quick screen grab and favoriting on my phone so they’re easy to find and adding details in my notes section as my back-up.

(5) Set A Reminder On Your Phone for Flight Check-Ins.  24-hours before you’re flight you’re able to check-in, and this is something I always forget – I don’t have airline apps or get email notifications, so I need to set my own reminder.  With a quick and easy reminder 24-hours before I remember to get all checked in, don’t forget to do this for your trip home!

(6) Pre-Schedule Vacay Activities.  Whether it’s a special dinner reservation, tickets for a famous tourist attraction, check out ticket pricing and times ahead of the trip.  This is especially important if you’re heading to city destinations like NYC or DC.  We quickly found out that we wouldn’t have been able to eat, or at least not at a decent time if we didn’t have a dinner reservation in either city! Same with famous destinations, tickets and crucial times quickly get snatched up – planning ahead will relive stress and allow you to see and do all those picture perfect places.

As much as vacations are for relaxing, they’re a bit stressful leading up to them so with a little pre-planning and organization you can be a little less stressed and straight to vacation mode!  Also, make sure you have a vacation ready wardrobe with these tips, seen previously on the bee. Do you have any pre-vacation rituals when you travel?  Leave a comment below!

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6 Pieces To Expand Your Wardrobe for under $30

Who doesn’t love a good accessory? As the seasons shift and the days get cooler, layering and switching up options for versatility is always a goal for me.  I like having outfits that work daytime and can easily be updated for an evening look for those week after work happy hours or last minute date nights.  The best part is you don’t have to spend a fortune to expand your wardrobe options!  Here are a few key pieces I always like to add to my wardrobe to help switch up looks – plus I’ve found pieces that are under $30 to help you expand your wardrobe too!Expand Wardrobe - bee life(1) More Scarves, Please!  Expanding your scarf collection with patterned and neutral scarves can expand your wardrobe options dramatically.  If you’re working with a  patterned scarf, like this Leopard Print Scarf from Gap  – you can stick to a neutral color palette as your base canvas versus a neutral scarf with a patterned dress or sweater.  Scarfs can also help you transition summer pieces into fall!

(2) Classic Booties. And buy multiple colors! Once you find a good classic pair of booties, stock up! You will quickly find that you’ll be switching these in and out all season long.  A great pair of booties can go with a variety of looks from a dress to jeans, plus they keep your tootsies warm!  Check out these booties from TJMaxx that come in both camel and black… and yes they’re under $30.

(3) Statement Necklace.  A statement necklace can change a whole look taking it from basic to glam.  I love taking a more casual look and adding a necklace making it feel more complete and ready to take on the day.  This is also another easy way to transition an outfit from daytime (no necklace) to nighttime (necklace!)  Pro-tip: Stock up with sales, like this sale at New York & Company happening right now!

(4) A Nude Handbag (or four). You should probably have like four nude handbags in different styles from over the shoulder, to a structured tote, to a work bag.  A nude bag can help make a statement when paired with fun colors, and is also professional for the work week! Aldo has a handful of nude stunners on sale, for under $30.

(5) A Neutral Jean Jacket. For under $30?! Hell yeah! The key is finding one that is classic and neutral both in colors and embellishments like this Jean Jacket from Target.  With the right jacket your wardrobe can be styled from casual to evening and from summer to fall.  Pro-tip: if you plan to layer a lot with you jean jacket, consider going up a size, or you may be somewhat limited to your seasons!  I love styling my jean jacket with a fun dress or styling it down with a t-shirt.

(6) Layering Vests.  Adding a few vests to your wardrobe will not only be functional, but will also give you a variety of options for switching out looks for continued versatility.  Having a few key vest types can help whether you’re dressing up a look (like this Vest from Nordstrom Rack) or being more casual on the weekend for a quick trip to the store or a walk with the pup (shop this Puffer Vest from Old Navy)!
6 Pieces Wardrobe - the bee life
Shop the pieces: Leopard Print Scarf from Gap | Vest from Nordstrom RackJean Jacket from Target | Booties from TJMaxx | Structured Tote from Aldo | Statement Necklace from New York & Co.

I am always looking for easy and budget friendly ways to expand my wardrobe while making sure my looks and pieces are functional!  A lot of these may seem like basics, but the key is to expanding and adding to your wardrobe expanding outfit options for all occasions.  Happy Shopping!

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Weekend Recap – Labor Day Love

All weekend I kept seeing social posts saying, “good-bye summer” and all these sappy farewells to a season that most of us look forward too the other 7-months of the year.  I was a little shocked… a little confused, since when is summer over?  That is one of the good things about being an adult, summer only ends when the good weather runs out… and the good weather isn’t running out anytime soon!

This Labor Day weekend was a much needed extended weekend with perfect summer weather, endless sunshine and the right amount of fun and relaxation.  Almost every day consisted of coffee, sunshine, cooking out, patio drinks, a little bit of house work, a nap and some friends or family.

One of our highlights of the weekend included enjoying a part of our city that we don’t nearly take advantage of enough – a rooftop bar in the center of the city with great views, delicious drinks, and some tasty treats.  I planned a surprise date for B and I, he didn’t know where we were going until we were walking inside the building – it was a simple afternoon chatting, enjoying the scenery and then got a bonus of the airshow for the holiday weekend.

Like I mentioned, the three day weekend was just what the doctor ordered.  We were even able to celebrate my dad’s birthday with him, while my mom and dad passed through town on their travels!  It

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Weekend Recap – City Love

This past weekend has been NON-STOP! It was a blast and it was centered around family and all of the things we love about this city.  The weekend started on Thursday night for us at a fundraiser wine tasting for the nonprofit I’m on the board of, JDBCF.  It was a fun evening, and it was hosted at a fun cozy spot in the Gordon Square area called Toast.

My cousins were in town for the weekend, so I was giving them the cities best picks for yummy eats and places to see while the explored the city Thursday and Friday.  We finally got to connect with them for dinner at our go-to summer spot; Collision Bend, Friday night.  Collision Bend has a great menu and perfect views and it’s always a great spot to show-off our city.  Saturday morning we started the day with our fitness class, then headed to the parks to rent some kayaks! Another fun way to see parts of our city and do something a little off the beaten path when visitors are in town.  B and I try and kayak at least once a year, so it was fun to get out with the family.

Saturday afternoon we switched gears and families and celebrated our nieces 3rd birthday – it was Moana themed, which now makes me slightly curious about the movie to see what all the fuss is about (unfortunately I can only post photos of the delicious sweets due to political reasons)! We ended the evening back home with some patio drinks and laughs with family story time. Sunday morning we took my cousins down to another park and showed them the endless city and lake views and the Solstice Steps.  Just another part of our city that we often take for granted and might get overlooked by visitors as well.  We then #brunched at the aunts house they made a few casseroles, including a french toast one that we’d never had before – and it was Ah-ma-zing!  I’m definitely going to be sharing the recipe in a future post!

It was a jammed packed weekend and it was great spending some extra time with our cousins that we usually see in small doses! Plus we got to do a few of our favorite things in our city. ❤

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Travel: #EmnBtoCbus

We snuck away this weekend to visit some friends in their new city: Columbus, Ohio.  Although it was a quick 24-hour trip for us, we seemed to squeeze in some pretty major places for tasty eats and drinks in addition to being able to catch up with our long lost friends!

We kicked off our festivities with a trip to North Market, which is an indoor market that is open 7-days a week with a variety of food vendors, shops and delicious smells.  Whether your shopping for lunch, grabbing meat for a dinner or fresh produce for an upcoming meal.  We were able to try a decent amount of the vendors like Brezel, Destination Donuts, Firdous Express and Hot Chicken Takeover, everything was delicious.  Oh and did I mention, you could walk around sipping the drink of your choice?  I opted for prosseco, yum!
Travel - #EmnBtoCbus - bee life blog
From North Market, we ventured to Wolf Ridge Brewing – this space is impressive with an intimate dining space, event room and then a back tap room giving you that local brewpub feel.  We hung out in the taproom, ordered a few tasting flights and discussed the many flavors of the beers.  With a pit stop back to the house to check on Moz, we headed out for a late dinner reservation at Service Bar. From the moment we walked in, the front doors are jaw dropping, I was in awe of the decor and atmosphere.  With gold tables, black leather booths, gold modern chandeliers and a 1920’s art decor wooden backdrop as the bar, this place was a mix of old world and modern.  Their menu’s also accommodated for vegetarians, gluten free and everyone else, the choices were a plenty and it couldn’t seem like you could pick wrong.

For Sunday #brunch we headed to Hoof Hearted Brewery & Kitchen, again we were challenged with having to choose one item on the menu, so we started with the Brunch Ballz and then decided on the Hoofy Breakfast, which was a plate full of delicious carbs, gravy, eggs and bacon. I had to throw the towel in and get a doggy bag, although, almost everywhere we ate we ended up having leftovers!

We had a great trip visiting our friends, catching up and eating delicious things – we are already looking forward to heading back to visit them for another weekend, as it seems like there are plenty of more cool spots to checkout!

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Local Love – Nature’s Oasis

Today’s Local Love is highlighting one of our latest go-to spots for an easy breakfast or late lunch on the weekend – and lately a few impromptu dinners!  With a full menu of options, Nature’s Oasis is the one-stop shop for any meal, delicious (hot or iced) coffee or a fresh made to order smoothie.
Local Love - Nature's Oasis - the bee life
Our go-to food orders are any number of the toast options like the Avocado toast, Energy-Boosting Breakfast toast or the Hummus toast… YUM!! There are also wraps, salads, other breakfast favorites and even carrot hot dogs, with any given number of monthly specials! All options are or can be vegan friendly, dairy free and are locally sourced. My favorite smoothie is the Oasis smoothie, it’s fresh, delicious, light but filling! All of the food portions are generous and filling.

Not only is the food delicious but the environment is welcoming and relaxed you’ll usually see someone working, friends catching up, families grabbing an order to-go or couples hanging out! Occasionally there are live performers on the weekends, plus there is a market too with hundreds of local products, including gifts featuring local made goodies, from candles, to mugs, cards and soaps.  Whether you shop or dine at Nature’s Oasis you’re supporting local business.

In case you couldn’t tell B and I, love Nature’s Oasis! The staff is friendly and it’s just a place you just like to go, that happens to serve delicious healthy eats that are local and good for you!

Weekend Highlight – Paint Your Pet

This weekend was relatively low key, we saved all the fun for our Sunday! A few weeks ago we planned a double date with L + C to attend a local ‘Paint Your Pet’ class at a nearby studio. I jumped on the idea of painting our own keepsakes in a heart beat, since a lot of those types of classes are a little more cookie cutter.

We had sent the pictures of our Moz the week before (picking two pictures was tough!) and they were all set up and ready for us when we arrived with a rough outline of her face! The class walked us through about 6 different stages to paint our pups working to the finished product.
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The class was a lot of fun, mainly in part to some great laughs with L + C, some bubbles and of course painting our little girl. It was so cool to see how everyone’s pups came out, the different styles and techniques. B and I’s pictures although different pictures of Moz are entirely different in style but they both look like our sweet girl!

After the class we grabbed some tacos and then went impromptu bowling for a round before finally coming home and being pooped. It was a fun yet still accomplishing afternoon and great way to spend time with B and friends while getting out of the house!

What was your weekend highlight?