Stripe Swing Dress

Photos by Deeana Kourtney Photography

J. Crew stripe swing dress | Similar scarf | Earrings c/o | Similar bag | Similar booties

Fall weather is finally starting to happen in Charlotte. Of course by that I mean it has dropped below 80 degrees...although I have had some strange weather transitions with my recent travels. I left Charlotte for cooler weather in NYC last week, but came back to warm weather again. Which followed me to Charleston this past weekend, and now Charlotte is cooler! Which is not my favorite, I was hoping for some more of the 70-ish degree days, but it seems like we are jumping down the the 60s. Anyway, my point is that I am starting to bring out things like scarves and booties for outfits like this one. I'll probably start bringing out my lighter sweaters and jackets as well. This outfit would also be easily worn for some cooler temperatures by adding a classic trench.

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4 Days in NYC

Outfit details here

If you have seen any recent Instagram stories of mine, you may know I just took a trip to NYC! TJ is finishing out a two-week work trip and I went up to visit and see the city with him. We packed a lot in to 4 days! We saw a lot of the city, walked so many miles, managed to find a Panthers bar, and were even able to meet up with some friends! So I thought I would break down all of the activities in a recap post.

The trip started off with a working breakfast at a Pret-A-Manger near the hotel (The Renwick), which was a grab-and-go spot that had some pretty good coffee! TJ went off to work, and I walked to Physique 57 for a barre class. I really enjoyed their method, I thought it was very similar to Xtend Barre that I have taken in Charlotte. I then walked down Fifth Ave to check out the Frick Collection museum. The collection was so beautiful, and there was a video with the history of the family and how the house became a museum. It was also conveniently located about a block away from Ladurée, so I had to stop in for some macarons! I have only been to that location once before, but it feels like reliving my trip to Paris from high school when I walk in. I then walked down Madison Ave for some window shopping on my way to meet back up with TJ. We stumbled upon Melt Shop for a late lunch that had a truffle grilled cheese sandwich, which may have been the best grilled cheese I have ever had. Then we headed back to the hotel for another bit of work, and got ready for dinner. We went to Rosa Mexicano at Union Square. I had been to the Lincoln Center location before and we both really enjoyed it, great margaritas and salsa! Then, we did the tourist thing and headed back to midtown to walk around Rockefeller Plaza and stopped into Magnolia Bakery for a late night cupcake. I had a cheesecake cupcake and I thought it lived up to the hype!

We started Saturday off by heading towards downtown for bagel sandwiches from Black Seed. We had to wait in line a bit, but it was worth it! Then we went to the World Trade Center to see the 9/11 Memorial Museum. It was a beautiful tribute, and definitely worth seeing. We also walked through the Oculus, and headed to Chelsea Market. By then it was mid-afternoon so we had a late lunch of burgers at the Cream Line. I also needed more coffee, and I found some great cold brew from Ninth Street Espresso! The market was right by the Highline that I have always wanted to see, but it was unfortunately closed early all week. After heading back from midtown, it was time for one of the highlights of the trip. We went to see Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, it was amazing! There were a lot of shows to choose from, and I'm glad we picked a classic. Also, we found a pretty great deal on tickets online via Broadway Box. Earlier in the day we noticed Blk Sq in Chelsea, and that it was going to be open very late. So instead of trying to figure out what else was open after the show, we went back to that part of town for delicious pizza and cocktails!

We started my last full day in town with mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral. We happened to walk into the Pulaski Day celebration, before the parade started down 5th Ave. Parts of the mass were said in Polish, so that was very interesting to see. Then we headed to the Upper West Side for the Hungarian Pastry Shop. It was recommended to me by a friend in Charlotte that lived in NYC for a few years, they had the best croissants and apple turnovers! As an added bonus, their menu also had the lowest prices I saw in the city.  Lincoln Center was on the way back to the hotel, so we stopped to walk around and grabbed some coffee at Épicerie Boulud. We then met up with a friend from Charlotte that had recently moved to the city at Eataly and had a Calzone pizza! Think of a pizza that was folded into a calzone, so it had the best of both in one meal. For our next stop, being a Sunday during football season, we put on our Panthers gear and caught the end of the game at Amity Hall in the West Village. It was so much fun to walk up to a bar in New York flying a Carolina Panthers flag out front, and full of Panthers fans! As the game was ending we met up with one of my former college roommates, and we walked around Washington Square Park and to Milk Bar. We tried the "crack pie" that was basically just a yummy butter cake. Next, we decided to head back to World Trade Center to see if we could do the One World Trade Observatory, but it was getting close to sunset and the tickets needed to be bought for a specific time. So we would not have been able to see it in daylight, and did not think it was worth it. So it is something to look forward to next time I make it up to NYC! After all of the walking/subwaying done earlier in the day, we decided to just stay at the hotel for drinks and dinner at Bedford and Co. which was great! For our last night, we did the most touristy things, which was walking the Brooklyn Bridge and Times Square at night. Times Square is not my favorite, but I really enjoyed the views from the Brooklyn Bridge at night!

My last morning was very chill, TJ went off to work and I walked down to Zara on 5th Ave. I really wish they would open in Charlotte, so I always have to stop in whenever I see a Zara in another city. I found a really cute navy leather jacket! Then I walked down to Maison Kayser to get a little blog work done, and enjoyed a ham and cheese croissant. TJ only had to work for a few hours, so I met up with him at Grand Central. We grabbed quick snack from Elizabar on our way to the Guggenheim Museum. I have always wanted to see this museum, so I was a little disappointed to see several of the galleries were closed for installations. However, that worked out fine because we did not have much time before I had to leave for the airport. So we did get to see everything that was still open and I did not feel like we were skipping anything. On our way back to the hotel we got some more snacks from Murray's Cheese Shop in Grand Central Market. I had some truffle potato chips, that I need to see if I can find in Charlotte! Sadly, the trip was then over, as I got an Uber to Laguardia for my flight back to Charlotte.

It was a very quick 4 days, but we really got to see a lot of the city! We also had perfect weather on both Friday and Sunday. Saturday and Monday were not bad, just cloudy a little on the chillier side. Let me know if you like more travel re-caps like this one. I have also been thinking about doing some Charlotte guides!

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Rugby Shirt

Photos by Deeana Kourtney Photography

J. Crew 1984 rugby shirt (also available in a dress) | James Jeans white denim | Similar flats | Similar bag | Monogram necklace

I figured it was appropriate to post this outfit today, because I wore most of it to fly back from NYC yesterday! I had the best long weekend there, and I plan to do a re-cap post on the blog soon! Anyway, I used to  have a few rugby shirts in college and they were a go-to in my closet because they are so comfortable but look a little bit nicer than a t-shirt. So when I saw the  navy and pink marked way down a few weeks ago, I needed another one. These shirts are also perfect for this in-between seasons weather we have been having. It was a summer item in the store, but I don't think it looks too summery to wear into October.
Also, you may have seen from my recent Instagram stories, there is a HUGE Last Chance Sale going on at Lauren James! It lasts through Friday, and don't forget to use code "CaraLC" at checkout!

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NYC Packing List

Skinny jeans | Leather jeans | Statement necklace | Tiered sleeve top | Velvet top | OTK boots | Nikes | Trench | Stripe dress | Blazer

I am heading to New York City after work today and I am so excited about it! TJ is there for work for awhile, so I'm going up to explore the city with him for a few days. I have only been once before and it was in the spring, so I'm excited to see it in the fall. As much as I love Charlotte weather, it will be nice to feel some cooler temperatures, that will be great for walking around. Although if it ends up being a little warm for boots I have some backup flats as well! I plan on going to a workout or two and seeing a few museums while TJ is working. And together we have quite a few things planned, but I think I am most excited about our tickets to the Phantom of the Opera! So here are a few of the things I'll be bringing with me to wear in the city, follow along on Instagram!

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My Favorite Apps and Videos for Working Out At Home

Photos by Deeana Kourtney Photography

K-Deer set: Top and Leggings c/o

We all know I love making it to the studio for a workout class, but sometimes that isn't always possible. Life happens, class costs add up, some days your schedule just doesn't allow fitting in a full class. Or you can score a little extra sleep by simply rolling out of bed to get in a morning workout. Or, you are away from your home (and all of your favorite studios), but still want to get a workout in. A few of those circumstances have had me exploring possible solutions with workout videos and fitness apps. So I thought I would share my favorite ways to work out at home, they have been mentioned in my Fitness Friday workout lists in the past. And the best part is 2 of the 3 are free!

ClassPass: CPGo App and Partner Videos
I have a subscription to ClassPass where I buy credits each month to use on classes at studios in Charlotte, and I can also use them in other cities that also use CP. Included with that subscription are pre-recorded partner videos including Barre3, Xtend Barre, Laughing Lotus Yoga, and more. I think the barre videos in particular have great modifications to get a barre class (without a barre) at home. There are not too many options of classes if you want to use this regularly, but a great change of pace when you don't quite have the time (or funds) to get into a class.
ClassPass's newest release is the ClassPass Go app, which has audio based workouts, that are all FREE! I have not been using it for a very long time, but I have been very happy with the variety available on the app so far. They have yoga, treadmill, core, cycling, rowing, outdoor running, basically everything except for barre. It looks like they are frequently adding new workouts, and depending on what your schedule looks like, there are options from under 10 minutes to over an hour. One thing I really like about the app is that you can choose any music genre as the background music. Which may not be the best if you want to blast the music from your headphones, because it is lowered under the voice of the instructor. But I personally like the option to do slow flow yoga to a Drake playlist.

Obé Live Streaming and On-Demand Videos
I learned about Obé (Our Body Electric) because local Charlotte fitness boutique Fit Atelier brought one of their trainers to Charlotte to teach a class. I unfortunately was not in town to take the class, but I was really interested in taking Megan Roup's method, The Sculpt Society. So when I saw that her classes live streamed on Obé (and she had a promo code for the first month), I had to try it. There is a subscription cost, but you get access to SO many workouts. Their lineup of trainers is so great and you can reserve a spot to join in a live stream for sculpt, HIIT, cardio dance, yoga, and more. And if you can't catch a live stream, a few classes are recorded every day so you can watch a playback at any time.

PopSugar Fitness Videos
PopSugar Fitness has a Youtube channel full of FREE workouts. There is a lot of variety from cardio dance to yoga, with some workouts under 20 minutes and others close to an hour. A lot of these workouts showcase trainers and their methods, so you could sample something like CorePower yoga or Barre Belle, and so many more. One thing I really like about some of the newer videos is that there is a countdown clock with the amount of time left in the workout. They also always show a lot of modifications whether you want lower impact movements or do not have have the required equipment.

Although as convenient and home workouts can be, I definitely prefer the full class experience. For the social aspect, personal instruction to know I am doing the workout correctly, and everyone else in the class holding me accountable to complete the workout. I have found myself wanting to give up quicker, or not do the workout 100% if I am alone in my apartment, or even with few people around in my apartment gym. But I think those are also just some reasons as to why group fitness is so important to my workout routine!

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Unpopular Opinion: I Don't Like Fall

Photos by Deeana Kourtney Photography

Lilly Pulitzer Nessa skirt | Similar stripe tee | Super similar heels | Similar bag | Baublebar for Target earrings c/o

I consider myself basic in many senses of the word. I feel the need to document when I am drinking coffee, or rosé, I eat a lot of avocados, I own a lot of leggings, etc. However, you will not be seeing a list of things I love about fall. I have just never been much of a fan of this time of year.  My favorite times of year are summer and Christmas, so for me, fall is a weird time between the two. I wish it was either still summer, or time for Christmas already. I do not really get excited at the thought of pumpkin spice everything, big sweaters, and cooler weather. Daylight Savings Time makes me sad, because I am always happiest when the sun is out. But, I have to say I do like the fall activities like apple picking, carving pumpkins, and corn maizes. And of course I do love watching the leaves change!
However, as a fashion blogger living in the south, the main reason I don't like fall comes down to the awkward "I should be wearing fall clothes but it is still 80 degrees out" or "it is still 80 degrees out, but no longer fashionably acceptable to still wear summer clothes" situation. Which leaves a few weeks of in-between clothes to avoid heat stroke. I love my summer wardrobe and bright colors so much, it makes me kinda sad to put it all away about time every year. This skirt in today's post is just so much fun to wear, I am hoping to maybe get one more wear out of it before I put it away for the season. Sure, I like that fall brings all of velvet, leather, and plaid. But I can't actually wear all of that comfortably until about November here! Maybe it is more that people (mostly on social media) have started to rush fall so much that I don't like? But then again, I'll probably be rushing Christmas in a matter of weeks, so maybe I'll just keep these thoughts to myself now...

Thanks for reading!