Just a Little Sparkle



It is full on December and with that come Holiday Parties. It's the time of year that I like to add a piece (or two) of sparkle to my wardrobe. Many of these items will go with what is already in your wardrobe. 
Kara Krittenbrink
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Black Friday Sale Guide




Many retailers have already started their Black Friday & Cyber Monday Sales! This year I will only be doing a couple gift guides. As I share  Black Friday sales below, I'll also link a few items from each retailer that I believe would make great gifts. If you need ideas for anyone specific feel free to comment below or DM me on instagram. 

Athleta - 20% off everything with code LAYERUP
Gift Ideas: Fuzzy Jacket, Shimmer Leggings

BareMinerals - 25% off everything and free shipping with code ITSON.

BaubleBar - 25% Off full price items with code FESTIVE25.

Gift Ideas: Gold Huggie Hoop Set, Pendant Necklace, Ear Crawler

BeautyCounter - 15% off sitewide. 
Gift Ideas: Sparkle paletteMini Oil set, and Body Butter Trio.

Express - 50% off everything plus free shipping.
Gift Ideas: Faux Fur Jacket, Diamond Tights

Gap - in stores and online. 50% off everything with code BLKFRIDAY and extra 10% off with code BESTEVER
Gift Ideas: Men's Puffer Vest, Flannel Pajama Set 

JCrewin stores and online. For Rewards Members: 50% off regular priced items and extra 60% off sale with code SHOPFIRST. For everyone else: 40% off with code WHYWAIT

Gift Ideas: Chateua Parka, Men's Pullover, Velvet blazer

Loren Hope - 20% off sitewide with code BLACKFRIDAY
Gift Ideas: Multi Color Studs, XO Studs, Drop Earrings

Madewell - in stores and online. 30% off with code GIFTWELL
Gift Ideas: this sweater, this coat, this leather tote, and this buffalo check shirt.

Nordstrom - Items on sale all week up to 50% off.
Gift Ideas: Hunter Rain Boots, Men's North Face Jacket, Tory Burch Bag

OGEE - 20% off sitewide.
Gift Ideas: Lip Set

Pottery Barn - Up to 40% off everything. 
Gift Ideas: Ombre Fur Throw Blanket, Glitter Flameless Candle

Spanx - 20% off sitewide.

Gift Ideas: Faux Leather Leggings, Reversible Tights

Stoney Clover - 25% off sitewide
Gift Ideas: Packing Cubes

Tiem - 10% off site-wide with promo code THANKFUL

Gift Ideas: Cycle Shoes


Kara Krittenbrink
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8 Pieces I Wear Over and Over


Over the past few years, I have really tried to make smarter fashion purchases. I have been making fewer purchases and considering how something fits into my current wardrobe. This allows me to splurge on a few items because I know I will wear them forever! I am sharing 8 Fall & Winter pieces that I already have and wear throughout the season. I have each of these items at least a year and know I will wear them for years to come.  


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I'm not really even sure what to call these pants. They are somewhere between a jogger and a workout pant. I bought them as a great pant option for traveling days. What i soon found out is that they can be dressed up too. With a nice blouse and heel they are ready for the office! I especially love the paper bag waist.

Sweater dresses really may be one of my favorite clothing items. They are the first item I get out when the weather cools down. I own solid, printed and oversized ones. The one I wear the most is my solid midi length one like this

If I could have a Fall and Winter uniform, it would be these Spanx leather leggings and a classic sweater like this one! I can not say enough about these leggings. They are the item I wear the most when it is cold out! They elevate any look but are so comfortable. I even like them with a casual top and tennis shoes. 

Coats can be an investment so I really like to research any I purchase. I have had this dress coat for years! It is so warm and the cut is incredibly flattering.  It goes well with any dressy outfits. I typically wear mine to weddings, church and other nice events. The length is good for both full length and shorter dresses and skirts! For a more casual coat, this one can't be beat. It was the only coat I took to NYC last December and it kept me so warm! You can put several layers on underneath it without looking too bulky. 

Boots are a staple for almost everyone during the cooler months. I thought about buying over the knee boots for a few years and finally decided to splurge on this pair. It is quite an investment and I did wait for them to go on sale before I hit purchase. I have now had them for three years and wear them more often than I even expected too. There are several similar styles to these but I like the mid height block heel on this pair. I think this height and toe shape are the most versatile.
Kara Krittenbrink
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Fall Trends under $150


Every season there are always a few items I seem to be excited to wear. Leather is always a popular item in the fall and winter, this fall I want to add a leather dress to my wardrobe. I want a mid length one in a neutral color to wear to work and dinner with friends. This brown option is my favorite! 


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When I need to change things up from my typical skinny jeans I grab my boyfriend jeans.. I love how they pair with with a slim fit sweater or with a tshirt tucked in them. My favorite pair are this pair from Madewell. 
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Something I'm looking to add to my wardrobe this season is a plaid blazer. This classic style is having a moment this season. Personally, I love the mixture of the menswear print in a feminine cut. For the office, I love a plaid blazer paired with black wide leg pants and a thin cashmere sweater. I also plan to style it with my favorite spanx leggings for dinner with friends. 


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What trends are you excited for this Fall?
Kara Krittenbrink
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JCrew Fall Sale


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JCrew just started a huge sale! Almost everything is 40% off with the code GOBIG. Even if the weather hasn't quite cooled down where you live, this sale is a great time to get some basic fall and winter pieces at a sale price. 

Cashmere sweaters are a fall and winter staple. These are thin enough to layer but will still keep you warm. I love both the vneck and turtleneck options. For something with a print, I'm getting this leopard sweater to wear with black leather pants!

When anyone asks for coat recommendations, I always suggest JCrew coats first. They can be an investment but will last you years! At 40% off this is the time to get one. They always sell out by the end of the season. This lady coat is my absolute favorite dress coat! The nipped in waist creates a flattering figure even when you have several layers on. I've had this style for several years and I still love it! For a more casual coat silhouette, I am a big fan of the cocoon coat. I have wanted one for years, and last year finally purchased this grey one!

Will you be stocking up on any Fall or Winter items?
Kara Krittenbrink
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Is it time for Fall?


It is late September, you are tired of Summer, football has started and pumpkin spice is everywhere.. which means all you want to do is wear Fall clothes. Is this just me? While the temperatures are not cooperating for me to actually pull out my sweaters, tights and boots, I have started to wear a bit darker of colors and patterns to start transitioning to Fall. 

Outfits can be a little tougher during this time and below I'm showing how I would style an item now and in when the temps are cooler. Being able to style items now and thru the Fall and Winter will extend your wardrobe, and who doesn't love that? I recently picked up these leopard shorts at Zara. While they are shorts, something about leopard typically makes me think of cooler seasons. I wore a version of this first outfit on a bachelorette party last weekend. I loved how flattering the cut was and how they make a statement while still being really comfortable. 






Kara Krittenbrink
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Munich and Oktoberfest


During our almost two weeks in France, Austria & Germany last Fall, we spend the most time in Munich. Our first and last days were spent in Paris (see here) and then went to Austria for 3 days (see here).  We had a few day trips we wanted to take from Munch so we gave ourselves the most time in this city. The whole reason for this trip and the timing of it was Oktoberfest! It has been on my bucket list for quite some time and I can't believe I finally got to experience it. This post is a little long but I really wanted to share all the information I had and everything I can learned while we where there. I'll be doing another post on 2 day trips we took in Munich: Dachau Concentration Camp and Neuschwanstein Castle.

Eat



Augustiner Brau - One of the oldest breweries and taverns in Munich. Their beer is one of the major beers served at Oktoberfest! Augustiner has a long and interesting history. Take it all in as you sit in the basement and have traditional bavarian food! The atmosphere is fun and a mixture of locals and tourists.

Eataly Munich - During our first night in Munich, we needed a good meal and it was pretty late. I've been to several Eataly's and they never disappoint. Our big bowls of pasta and bottle wine were the mid trip break we needed from sausages and beer.

Victuals Market - This daily market has a little bit of everything. You can wander thru over a 100 vendors and shops. For an alternative to eating at a restaurant you have  plenty to pick from at the many stalls. You can really spend a half day wandering the market. It's a great place to find some interesting souvenirs.

See/To Do



Marienplatz - As the main square of Munich since 1158, I recommend it as a first stop in the city. Use it as a central point to start a walk around the area. There are plenty of places to shop and eat as you explore. Dating back over 100 years,  the main attraction in the square is the Glockenspiel. 2 (or 3 times in the summer) the Glockenspiel chimes and the life-size figures re enact a the 16th century marriage of a local duke. The second level re enacts another story from that time period.

The blocks surrounding Marienplatz are worth wandering thru. Its a historic and well preserved area. So whether you have a few minutes or a few hours, it is well worth getting lost and discovering.



Oktoberfest - I honestly could do a whole post over just Oktoberfest! Oktoberfest is a giant yearly beer festival in Munich that has been a tradition for over 200 years. Thousands of people travel from all over the world to partake in the festival. It is a little over 2 weeks long and it typically starts at the end of September and goes into October. The festival is really unlike anything else in the world. There are food booths, games and small rides all over the fairgrounds!

The big attraction are the numerous beer tents. There are big and small tents and each one has their own vibe and decor! We researched and read all about all the tents. No matter what tent you use, you can't reserve a table unless you have a group of 8 or more. You will also need to make those reservations months if not a year in advance. For those, like us, that don't have a big group or those that don't want to make a reservation you will have to work a little harder to get a seat. The best strategy is to look for open seats at a table and then ask those sitting there if you can join! Waitresses will walk around and take your order for beer and food. Cash is preferred and sometimes the only thing the beer tents take. I recommend giving a big tip on your first round and then the waitress will make sure to come back to you!


Buying a Dirndl - If you are going to Oktoberfest or just want a great keepsake, buying a dirndl should be on your to do list. Its an experience itself. During Oktoberfest, they are basically sold everywhere but your first stop should be Original Steindl which is just a few blocks from the Marienplatz. The dirdnl has three parts: the dress, skirt and top. Some are sold all together and others you can pick each part individually.

English Garden - One thing we didn't have time to see but I wish we had was the English Garden. Named for the style of park, it is one of the largest urban public parks in the world. There are several different areas including a Japanese teahouse, Chinese Tower and artificial stream where you can surf.

Getting Around

Munich is a major air and plane hub so it is not difficult to get to. We came from Salzburg, which is about a two hour train ride.

I found Munich to be one of the easiest cities to get around! The subway system is really easy to navigate and stretches to almost anywhere you would want to travel to. We bought a 3 day ticket that you can use to ride the subway as much as you need each day.

Also check out the bus system, from our air bnb in Munich it was the easiest & fastest way to get to the airport on our last day.


Stay

Like the rest of our trip we booked an air bnb for our time in Munich. Like I mentioned earlier, Munich is really easy to get around so we didn't mind staying a little farther outside the main area. Our air bnb was a few blocks away from the English Garden. We had a short walk to the subway to get wherever we needed to.
Kara Krittenbrink
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White Hot



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When you are in the middle of wedding planning you have to make so many decisions. One decision that shouldn't be stressful is what to wear to all of the fun parties and showers that are thrown for you. Last week I was helping a friend of mine find an outfit for her upcoming couple's shower and after searching I realized there are so many cute options out right now. It was fun to find her some different dresses and rompers to try.  

While I don't think you have to wear white for any of your wedding events, it is what color my friend wanted to wear.  One of my favorite looks is this jumpsuit! It really can be worn for almost any wedding event but I love it most for an engagement party or couple's shower.

For a shower or other day time events, this cut out dress and off the shoulder option are so dreamy and feminine. They would also be great to pack for a beach honeymoon!

For options that are a little different, I would suggest this assymetrical dress. With just subtle assymetry and a classic neckline it is a mix of modern but classic. 
Kara Krittenbrink
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Everyday Suncare & Faux Tan


Suncare is important year round but really something we should all focus on during the Spring and Summer.  It's no secret that I took suncare seriously. Sunscreen has changed a lot in the last few years. There are so many options when it comes to how to protect your skin.  It is not just about lotions anymore. Below are some new types of products to integrate into your routine. 

I'm also sharing how I get a faux tan. Just because we are protecting our skin doesn't mean we can't have a summer glow. 

  1. Sunscreen Oil - If you have ready any of my skincare posts, you'll know I love face oil. Over the past few years it has become my favorite skincare products. I've now switched to using a this sunscreen oil in the morning all over my face and body on any days I'm going to be outside. This formula soaks in and doesn't feel greasy. Once it has soaked in you can apply make up over it with out any issues. It is moisturizing and nourishing and gives a soft glow that I love.




2. Setting Mist -  I know many people are skeptical about whether a setting spray works of not, but I've always been a believer. When you combine one with spf, I'm really in. This product not only keeps your makeup on longer but it applies an even coat of spf 50. It is an especially great travel item.






3. Setting Powder - Another dual purpose item, this product sets make up, applies sunscreen and mattifies your face. It is the perfect product to use as a sunscreen touch up over makeup. It will soak up any oil as well.

Color Science Setting Powder - Supergoop Setting Powder


I've tried my fair share of self tanners and had plenty of bad experiences. Finding a combination of natural color, even application and a great smell is not easy. I've never had as natural of color as St. Tropez and Tan Towels. St. Tropez's foams (here and here) go on smooth and evenly. The foam is colorless and has just a slight but pleasant smell. It gives subtle color that you can build but you will tell a difference after one application. I have recently starting using this tanning mitt and the application has been even easier. 

Tan Towels are single use towels infused with self tanner. Application is easy because you just swipe the towels across your body. Since there aren't any liquids with this product, it's so easy to take on vacations. 

Kara Krittenbrink
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OOTD Vol. 2



Summer always has in the mood for denim! After sharing my outfits over the last couple weeks, I realized I've been incorporating it into almost all of my casual and weekend outfits. As you'll see in the links below Madewell and JCrew are my favorite places to find denim pieces. 




JCrew Denim Dress (similar here and here) - Gucci Purse 


 Gucci Purse - Frye Sandals, Old (similar here)


Gucci Purse -Frye Sandals, Old (similar here)



Kara Krittenbrink
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Target Purchases Vol. 1


Like I mentioned in this post, I want to start sharing some purchases I've made lately. They may seem a little random but it is what has been purchased lately. This round up include a few items my roommates bought. I mean who can you trust more to give great recs than your best friends?

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1. Who What Wear Maxi Skirt - The ultimate dress up or down piece. Throw on with a tee and sneakers for brunch or day time and then add a silky cami and heels for date night. 

2. Revlon Cushion Lip Tint - This has become my go to summer color. My summer makeup is always easier and more relaxed.  The cushion applicator gives the look of a stain and you can easily control the intensity of the color as well. The look is like you just had a popsicle and stained your lips, and I mean that in the best way. In a pinch I've even used it as blush!

3. Stars Above Pajama Set - In this Oklahoma heat, the last thing I want is to be warm at night. This set is soft, cool and a little sexy while not trying too hard.

4. & 6.  Joy Lab Tie Dye Bra & Leggings - One of my roommates just became a cycle bar instructor! She's always someone I go to for athleisure and work out recs. She bought this set and I've been wanting it ever since! You can wear the bra as a top or throw a tank on over it.

5. Dove Dry Shampoo As someone that uses dry shampoo on an almost daily basis I am always trying new ones. This is by far my favorite drug store dry shampoo. It really soaks up the oil in my hair and the smell is my favorite. 

7. A New Day Shift Dress - One of my roommates is amazing at finding great deals. If you need some easy summer items that are easy to pack, get this dress ASAP. I love a dress that is fitted enough to give shape but doesn't cling to you. 

8. Champion Tie Back Tank - Lately, I have been trying to create a better work out wardrobe. I hadn't bought any pieces in awhile. I stumbled upon this tank and bought it in 2 colors. It fits well and you can tie the back or leave it loose, depending on how you want it that day!

9. A New Day Nylon Tote - I've been in need of a new tote that could work as both a gym bag and pool bag. I wanted something stylish with a couple zippered pockets that is easy to clean. The side pockets on this bag hold so much and keep you organized while the middle holds everything you need. I've packed for the office and gym in this bag and still had room. A few days after I bought this bag one of  my roommates loved it so much she bought one for herself!

What have you been purchasing from Target?
Kara Krittenbrink
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Nordstrom Anniversary Sale


If you follow any other bloggers, I'm sure you have seen everyone posting about the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. It really is always a great sale with lots of quality items I end up loving. I love that it is pre-season items that are on sale but sometimes it is hard to shop for things I can't wear/use yet. 

A goal I have had this year is to cut down on the number of items I purchase. I have focused on buying quality over quantity, which means I may not be spending less money overall but I am trying to really love everything I purchase! I have done a few months of spending blackouts which has helped me create new habits. I'm working on a full post on this but with this mentality I wanted to post only a few quality items that I really love from this sale. 

Sometimes so much is on sale it can feel overwhelming and like you need to buy everything. My strategy is to either find a few basics I need or a fun splurge item. When I'm focused, I'm always happier with my purchases!


Jacquard Leopard Skirt - Pleated Leopard Skirt - Tory Burch Purse
Charlotte Tilburry Lip Set - Nars Lip Crayons  - Leopard Dress 
Grey Tennis Shoes - Nike Tennis Shoes - V Neck Sports Bra 
Spanx Leather Leggings - Madewell Jeans

My number one recommendation would be to purchase the Spanx Leather Leggings! In the Fall and Winter I wear them atleast weekly! They can be dressed up or I've paired them with tennis shoes on travel days. 

The items I purchased are the leopard dress, grey tennis shoes and Charlotte Tillbury Lip set! I may also buy another pair of my favorite 
Madewell Jeans and this fun sports bra.

The sale is also a great time to stock up on skincare items you already buy or something you have wanted to try.


Kiehl's Overnight Serum - Supergood Sunscreen with Vitamin C
St. Tropez Original Bronzing Mousse - Supergoop Setting Spray
Neulash Eye Lash Growth Serum - Super Goop Setting Powder Sunscreen

Are you shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Kara Krittenbrink
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Amazon Purchases Vol 1


I think most of us have places we typically shop. Whether it is groceries, cosmetics, clothing etc... most of us are creatures of habit. Like many, I find myself shopping at Amazon and Target on  an almost weekly basis. I'm always interested to see what people buy and what cool, interesting products they've found. So I'm starting a series where I'll occasionally share items I've bought or have been recommended to me from Amazon & Target. 

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1. CRZ Yoga Legging - At less than $30 these legging seem to good to be true. My roommate bought a pair and when she had them on, I didn't they weren't a more expensive brand. They fit great and the material is super soft!

2. Heart Shaped Sunglasses - I'm fully aware these glasses are a little extra but at $10 they make such a fun summer accessory. I first bought the black pair but now own the white and red too. 

3. 6 Pack Thongs - For a simple cotton thong, you can't beat the price of these! They fit well and lay pretty smooth. 

4. Apple Watch Band - I don't actually own an Apple watch but both of my roommates do and love them. These bands come highly recommended. I love how affordable they are so you can buy a few to match different outfits!

5. & 9.  Hydro Flask Handle & Hydro Flask Water Bottle - Hydro Flask water bottles are really some of the best. They are sturdy, keep your drink cold and are so durable. These handles make them so much easier to handle and carry around. 

6. Tanning Mitt - I'm not sure how it took me so long to discover a tanning mitt. Whether you use foam, lotion or oil this tanning mitt makes your self tanner go on so much smoother. I have so many fewer streaks and missed spots. It also saves your hands from the dreaded orange look!

7. Ice Roller - Everyone needs an ice roller! I bought one because I had read that it helps your face serums and products work better. Now I use it for so many reasons. In the morning if I'm puffy or swollen I'll roll my whole face for a few minutes. The key to rolling is to always roll in an upword motion. The ice roller is great for headaches too!

8. Ultra Supportive Sports Bra - I'm always looking for supportive sports bras. They can be so expensive that it is hard to buy more than one. For under $35 this bra provides a lot of support with no wires.

10. Cole Haan Sandal - I love these sandals so much I bought them in two colors and have talked about them so much several of my friends have bought them! They are Cole Haan so you know they are comfortable and they are also so cute. My basic black pair goes with everything and the gold pair are just dressy enough. I always pack a pair for any vacation and I believe both pairs will be going to Italy with me later this Summer. 

Kara Krittenbrink
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Book Round Up Vol. 4




Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton - I'm never one to shy away from a book based in History but when it is paired with a love story, I'm absolutely hooked. I know very little about Cuba's history but this book really brought it to life. The story goes back and forth between 1950's Cuba and present day. Elisa Perez lives a pretty sheltered and upper class life until she meets a revolutionary. In present time Elisa's granddaughter travels to Cuba for the first time to after hearing stories about it from her grandmother her whole life. The contrast of Cuba's beauty and unstable political climate create a push and pull for Elisa. This book was captivating for me since the first chapter. 



Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid - This book has made it's way into one of my favorite books of all time. Daisy Jones & the Six were the IT band of the 70's. They epitomized Sex, Drugs and Rock N' Roll but their music is legendary. This is the story behind how Daisy Jones, the beautiful club hopper with a voice that everyone falls in love joins the band The Six. The band's members are highly talented but all have their demons. The story is told by an oral history of interviews of all the band members. Each person is in present day reflecting on their memories of the rise of the band. The sometimes contradicting stories paint the picture of that era and what it is like to rise to the highest level of stardom. I actually recommend listening to this one because each character is narrated by a different voice. 



We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter - It wouldn't be a book list without something from the WWII era. In 1939 three generations of the Kurc family are trying to keep up their normal life in Poland as war creeps closer. As Jews, their rights are slowly taken away and the must do what they can to survive. This story takes you thru each family members journey, one is forced into exile, another tries to leave the continent while some are constantly trying to escape certain death. The whole time they are torn from each other and can only pray that the rest of their family is surviving. During the darkest, most horrific time in the 20th century, this family tries to perservere in ways most of us can't imagine. I'm a firm believer that every person needs to read and learn as much as they can about this era so something like it will never happen again. 



Killing Jesus by Bill O'Reilly & Martin Dugard - This book, like others in the series, focuses on the facts and history of the time period. I loved learning about the political and social landscape of the time of Jesus and how that played a big factor in his death. For me, it strengthened my faith even more. 



Life Will Be the Death of Me by Chelsea Handler - I posted a mini review of this book on my instagram. The first thing I'll say is that it is not what I expected from Chelsea. Yes, it has her sharp dark humor but it is much more than that. It follows Chelsea's year of self discovery. With the help of a therapist, she works thru some of the major traumas in her life and learns how they have influenced who she is and her life path. She knows she needs to make changes to herself and to the world at large. I honestly laughed, cried and shook my head many times through out this book. As much as it is entertaining, I also found new ways to challenge myself to grow from this book. 

Kara Krittenbrink
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4th of July Inspiration


Today I'm sharing a quick post with some pieces that have me excited for the 4th of July. My plans are usually a casual event that involves family, friends fireworks and food. It's always especially hot in Oklahoma in July so breezy, comfortable outfits are what I'm drawn to.  



Kara Krittenbrink
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