It’s Finished…

The sales person at Le Bon Marche sighs as I try them on again.  It’s 7:45 pm and the store closes at 8:00 pm.  My birthday is tomorrow.  They are extravagant, but I do love them.  I am not 100% sure about the comfort and after the pair I bought in Amsterdam last week gave me blisters,  I am a little hesitant

“Shall I wrap them up?” she says with thinly veiled annoyance.

“What time do you open tomorrow?  It’s my birthday.”  I say with a smile.

“10 am.” she says as she sets the box down and gestures to put them in the box.

“Ok.  I am going to think about them and I will come back tomorrow.”  I say as I take them off and hand them to her.

She just stares at me like I am a crazy person, boxes them up and walks away.

The next morning I wake up with the sun and my first thought is of the shoes. They are perfect and will go with everything.  Prada mules with rainbow bands.  It is my 36th birthday.  I head out for coffee and a croissant at Cafe de l’Esplanade.  I enjoy the view of Les Invalides while keeping an eye on my watch.  At 9:15 am I pay my bill and head over to Le Bon Marche.  I arrive at 9:45 and wait for the doors to open.  I can’t stop thinking about the shoes.

The doors open and I head straight for the third floor.  I find the display shoe and pick it up.  I look for a sales person.

Finally one greets me “Bonjour, Mademoiselle.”

“Bonjour, I would like these in a 39.”  I say with a smile.

She smiles and goes to get them.  The wait goes on and on and seems to take an hour.  She returns with a scowl on her face and she is empty handed.

“I am sorry.  We don’t have it.  It is finished.” she says.

“But, I just saw it last night at closing.  Are you sure?” I plead.

“It is finished.  I am sorry.” she says again.

Defeated, I leave the store.  I walk aimlessly on Boulevard Saint-Germain.  How could I be so cautious and let them slip through my fingers.  I must have them.  I jump on the metro and head to Prada on Rue Saint-Honore.

I head into the store and look around and don’t see them anywhere.

“Bonjour, Mademoiselle. ”

“Bonjour.  I am looking for the sandal with the colored straps.”

“Ah yes, we only have a 35 left.  Very popular.”

After I returned to the states I continued to try to find them.  InStyle magazine featured them a few months later, but they were no where to be found.  I still think about them from time to time.

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Fourteen years later, I was lucky enough to celebrate my birthday in Paris, again.  This time with my husband and son.  I was very determined not to hear “It’s finished” while still being cautious about my purchases.  I did not buy that many little things, but I did go for a couple of bigger things like the shoes below and a handbag (coming soon).

I had my eye on this Veronica Beard blouse (below) before I left.  I was saving all my shopping for Paris, so I held off.  Imagine my delight when I learned it was on sale and still available in my size upon my return home.  I styled it with denim, a striped clutch, my new sandals and my sunglasses (which were perfect in Paris as I could leave them on going in and on the metro and still read signs and be chief navigator for my family).

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Blouse (also here )

Striped Clutch

Sunglasses

Denim

Hermes Sandals (similar here, here and here)

Happy Styling!

XO,

JAE

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Mani Monday – In the Pink Edition

I’m starting off my birthday week in the pink. It’s a throwback to my nail game before I discovered nail art. Back then, I used to alternate between pale pinks and wear my mani for at least two weeks. My, how times change. I love this subtle stripe with the negative space of my nail-art-adjacent manicure.

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The manicure and nail art are by Olive & June.  The color is “Blush Worthy” by Essie Gel Couture.

Items in the photos include:

Insect Shirt

Zig Zag Flats

Star Cashmere Sweater

Simple Tote

Strawberry Clutch

Pink and White Striped Sweatshirt

Tiger Blouse

Perforated Tote

Floral Dress

Floral Smocked Skirt

Happy Monday!

XO,

JAE

Mani Monday – BB-8th Birthday Edition

This weekend we celebrated my son’s 8th birthday with a Star Wars themed bowling party.  He loves the droids especially BB-8.  It was fun to watch him bowl with all his buddies and he even got a strike!  After the party he wrote all of his thank you notes after opening his gifts before playing with anything.  He and his friends are a joy to be around (even with a few disagreements over the favored ball).  The server at the bowling alley commented that they were the most polite and well behaved group of boys she had ever served.  Of course that made me so happy to hear and I must share with each of their parents.

The manicure and nail art are by Olive & June.  The colors are “Looks to Thrill” by Essie Gel Couture and “Cream Puff” by CND Vinylux.

Items in the photos include:

BB-8 Clock

Star Wars Favor Bags

Inside:

Star Wars Pencils

Star Wars Pencil Sharpeners

Star Wars Jelly Bellys

Star Wars Bouncy Balls

Happy Monday!

XO,

JAE

 

Love and Stripes

Love, stripes and a birthday weekend lunch with my mom at Flower Child.   I was happy to have my favorite kale salad with salmon before all the celebrating and cake eating commenced.  It was perfect June weather and just right for a cotton sweater and skirt.  I love this striped sweater with patches.

 

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J. Crew Striped Sweater

J. Crew Postcard Pouch

J. Crew Skirt (similar here)

J. Crew Sunglasses

J. Crew Shoes (older style these and these would look great)

Lipstick Queen Chinatown Glossy Pencil in Pink Bluff

Happy Shopping!

XO,

JAE

Gemini in a Blue Dress

Last year I wrote about the The Privilege of Getting Older.  I still feel like it is a privilege even as this year flew by (I know that is such a cliche, but seriously, time is moving at warp speed).

This weekend is my birthday which also signals the official start of summer and the longest day of the year a few days later.  My son finished First Grade this week and we spent the first day of summer at Legoland followed by swimming.  Life is good.  I am lucky and I have a lot to be grateful for.

And who doesn’t love great birthday presents like this Cult Gaia Ark Bag  (also here) and Samantha Sung dress?  I also found the most comfortable Stuart Weitzman sandals in navy with a frayed edge.  The dress is versatile, so comfortable, well made with important details like a snap instead of a button in just the right place.  I have already worn it with flat sandals for a more causal look.

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Samantha Sung Dress (similar here)

Cult Gaia Ark Bag in Large

Stuart Weitzman Sandals

Lipstick Queen Chinatown Glossy Pencil in CRIME

Happy Friday!

XO,

JAE

Mani Monday – Cupcake’s Birthday Edition

We celebrated our dog, Cupcake’s, eighth birthday over the weekend complete with cupcakes from a dog bakery.   She was not that cooperative with the mani photo shoots this year. Maybe she is not thrilled about being in her mid-fifties. It’s a tough jump from forty-nine.

The manicure and nail art are by Olive & June. The color is “Sun Bleached” by CND Vinylux.

 

Happy Monday!

XO,

JAE

 

Mani Monday – 7th Birthday Edition

This weekend we celebrated my son’s seventh birthday with a cake decorating party at Duff’s Cakemix.  I was amazed at the focus and attention to detail that each of the ten boys brought to their masterpieces.  They had so much fun and were so helpful to one another.  They managed to share the coveted lego candy that, of course, most of them needed for their designs.  It is inspiring to watch them and their unbridled enthusiasm.  It fills me with hope for the future.

The manicure and nail art are by Olive & June.  The color is “Creekside” by CND Vinylux.

Happy Monday!

XO,

JAE

The Privilege of Getting Older

I celebrated my birthday last weekend.  Birthdays used to give me a tremendous amount of anxiety.  I started my own personal life performance review about a month before.  There was some, a lot of crying,  soul searching and angst.  A lot of that had to do with where I was in life in terms of marriage and children (and the lack thereof) through most of my thirties.  I met my husband ten years ago about a month before my birthday.  He definitely witnessed a few crazy tears leading up to my birthday and he did not run for the hills.  He planned a nice dinner and showed up with flowers and a great gift.  It was a great birthday then.

This year was also a great birthday.  I started the celebration with my son and my parents in San Diego with breakfast (and a fun dinner with a view the night before).  My son and I went to visit them as soon as school got out.  We drove back to Los Angeles and arrived home to a decorated house with flowers, balloons, a lovely lunch of my favorite gourmet sandwich,  Harry’s Berries, mini cupcakes and cards laid out.

After this celebration that my husband planned so that our son would not feel left out when the babysitter (yes, babysitter!) arrived.  We headed out for one of my favorite activities,  you guessed it, shopping. We went to Calypso and he took a comfortable seat while I tried on a bunch of new arrivals. I bought a couple of dresses and even wore one out of the store.

A friend had recently celebrated her birthday at Capo in Santa Monica. I mentioned it to my husband and, to my surprise, he was able to get a reservation. But first, margaritas at Casa Del Mar (where we had our first date). The margaritas were house made and delicious.

Capo exceeded our expectations from the great service to the amazing dinner and decadent chocolate soufflé. I had calamari al forno and an amazing pasta sampler.

Best of all, no tears – well almost.  There were a couple of tears of joy and gratitude.  I am lucky to have a husband who makes me feel so special on my birthday. I also appreciate having each birthday. Life is short and precious. It is a privilege to get older and one that I do not take for granted.

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Outfit details:

Calypso Dress

Calypso Clutch (similar here)

J. Crew Shoes

Here is to the privilege of getting older.

XO,

JAE