Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2021 :: My Favorites & What I’m Ordering

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is the biggest sale of the year! I always mark my calendar, look at the preview as early as it comes out, go to the store and shop on the first day. I’m sharing everything I have seen online that I currently have and love – highly recommend! Also, some items I know I will order.

I’ll be sharing my try on haul tomorrow :)

Clothing

Clothing : Loungewear & Pj’s

Shoes

Accessories

Beauty

Home

My Experience with Dating After Divorce

I have been divorced and back on the dating market for 3 years now.  All I can say is, so much has changed since the last time I was single back in 2002.  Not only has our society changed so much when it comes to dating, I am now dating as a 38 year old divorced mom.  It’s a whole new world I have had to learn how to navigate.

Getting back on the dating scene after being married for 15 years has been exciting, fun and scary.  I love to have new experiences and adventures and enjoy meeting new people.  I also get scared I’m going to meet some creep with bad intentions and end up a skin suit.

I think dating can be fun if you go into it with the right approach.  Every date is an opportunity to get to know someone new from a different walk of life.  Everyone has a story.  I ask questions and hear their story, every man loves to talk about himself ;).  My personality is a huge talker, but I do my best to ask questions because I am there to get to know him.  Getting to know him is the only way I will know if I want a second date.  Even if it doesn’t go any further than a first date, it’s always an opportunity to learn something.  Something new he said about life, something new about myself, or learn more about what I want and what I don’t want.  Even a bad date is not a waste of time if I can find the lesson to be learned.

Always be safe!  I always meet my date at the restaurant.  I never let him know where I live until I feel completely comfortable and safe that he has that information.  For me, it’s at least several dates before I would let him pick me up and know where I live.  Also, to be alone in a car with a man is a vulnerable position.  This is another reason why I won’t let him pick me up until I’m comfortable.  Before a date I always let at least one person know where I’m going, what time, what I’m doing, etc.  And I check in regularly with that person throughout the date to ensure I am safe.  Always take the necessary steps to stay safe.

In the past 3 years I have been on many first dates and have had 2 relationships (one short and one long).  I have had many experiences; some good, some bad and some in between.  I plan to share specific stories of some of my dates in later posts.  There are some hysterical stories!

What do I find to be the biggest challenge?  Being in my upper 30’s it’s a unique group of men that are single.  I have found it’s either men that are divorced- which brings up all of those questions… What happened?  Do you have kids, how many, how old?  What is the coparenting relationship like?  If he talks negative about his ex-wife on the first date, run!  Then there are the men that have never been married.  Which leads to a different set of questions… Do you have commitment issues?  Are you a workaholic? Are you emotionally unavailable or have extreme mental health issues?  No one is a clean slate, myself included. 

I love the scene in ‘The Other Woman’ when Leslie Mann says: “The last time I was single the dating pool was everyone.  Now it’s a shallow puddle of age appropriate men.” LOL!!  Then Cameron Diaz goes on to say that it’s even worse than that!  This is pretty much how I have felt!

One advantage is most people my age know what they want.  They have an established life and aren’t going out on a date to waste time.  More often than not, they are up front about their life and what they are looking for.  The first date typically feels more like a job interview.  You go over all the important things and ask the hard questions.  I like this because I can make a logical decision before getting my heart invested.  Everyone has deal breakers.  You may as well ask right away and don’t waste time.

I have found it difficult to navigate dating while having young children. I am very protective over my children and always want them to feel safe.  My kids are with me the majority of the time and I don’t want to get a babysitter so I can go on a date.  I will only go on a date on nights they are with their dad.  Which doesn’t provide me a lot of free time to date.  I also keep my dating life extremely private from my kids.  I don’t tell them if I am going on a date.  They did know when I was in my longer relationship, only because they kept seeing his name pop up on my phone and they asked me about him.  They knew his name and they saw a picture of him and that’s about it.  

Still to this day my kids have never met anyone I have dated.  I tell my kids “when I meet someone who is special enough that has earned the right to meet you, that’s when you will meet him.”  And I take that very seriously.  My kids will ask me about dating once in a while.  They used to only want it to be just the 3 of us forever.  But now they have let me know they want me to meet someone and be in love.   I think as time as passed from the divorce and they are growing up, they don’t want me to live life alone.  I also think they like the idea of having a male figure in the home, it adds something that I can’t provide.  They have put in some special requests…. Caleb told me he wants a brother who is 9 or 10 years old. lol!

I spend almost all of my time with my kids, my family or working.  This doesn’t provide me much opportunity to meet someone.  This is another area I have found challenging.  Where do I meet someone?  I have tried dating apps – OMG! I could write a book on my experience on dating apps lol!  I go out with my girlfriends for dinner, drinks, music; this seems like it would be a good opportunity to meet someone.  But hasn’t ever worked out well for me.  Some advice given to me from my brother: if I’m out at a restaurant, bar, wherever and a man approaches me he’s a douche bag.  The good quality men don’t approach in this way, they usually just sit with their friends.  Which puts the ball in my court to approach him.  It’s good advice!  But it’s a hard one for me to swallow.  I believe in a man making the first move and pursuing the woman.  I can be very old fashion when it comes to dating.  But I’ve also been told that as a woman all I have to do is smile at a man from across the room that I’m interested in meeting.  And if he is interested he will walk over and say hi.  Again good advice, but hasn’t worked for me :/

I’m sharing this advice in hopes it will be helpful for someone.  If it works for you let me know ;)

I’ve always been a positive person and believe in love.  I am a true hopeless romantic.  I love romantic movies and the big grand gesture that the man does for the woman he loves.  I know it’s a movie, but I do believe that can happen in real life.  After a failed marriage and 3 years of dating and I’m currently as single as it gets (literally zero prospects currently!), it would be easy for me to become cynical or bitter.  But I refuse!  I will always believe in love.  I still believe the right man is out there for me somewhere.  And we will find each other when the time is right.  

OUTFIT DETAILS

Dress: Good American (my most worn dress ever!!) | Necklace: Lana Jewelry, similar under $40

Having an ‘All or Nothing’ Personality: the Pros & the Cons

Having an all or nothing personality, or I like to call it- being passionate, has many strengths and it also has many challenges. I live life to the fullest!! I have always had a ‘go big or go home’ view towards everything in my life. And as one of my closest friends says to me: “I rarely go home” lol :)

The pros: When I set my mind to something there isn’t anything that will stand in my way of accomplishing it. It’s not within me to try half way or give up. I give 110% of myself and my efforts to everything I do. I live life with a lot of passion and I allow that passion to guide me. If I’m not passionate about something, I don’t do it. So when I set my mind on something and pour my heart into it, I will always succeed!

When I commit to something or someone I am committed! Whether it is a friendship, romantic relationship, work, or a goal I set for myself – I stay committed all the way thru. This helps me to never give up on my goals and dreams. This also makes me very loyal to whoever I commit to, it takes a lot for me to end a relationship. I love very hard and with a lot of passion. This deep love and commitment I have makes me very passionate about being a great Mom. I take the responsibility of being a Mother very seriously and put my kids #1.

I feel life to the most. I experience love, laughter, joy in the deepest way possible. I physically feel the emotions so much it consumes my entire being. Which makes life so much fun! I am a forever optimist about life and always see the good in everyone.

The cons: Because I am a passionate person and feel life to the most, I also feel the ‘bad’ emotions to the most as well. When something devastating, traumatic or hurtful happens I go into such a deep place of pain. I feel the hurt so much deeper and worse than most. And it typically takes me longer to move out of that place of pain. I’ve been called a “victim” or “having a pity party”. But it’s the process I need to go thru in order for me to truly work thru these emotions and release them. If I move on before I’m ready with a fake smile these emotions will come back to bite me later. It’s always best to face emotions head on in the moment.

Good habits can take a turn into obsessions, leading to unhealthy behaviors. Let me give an example: Several years ago I wanted to lose about 20 pounds. It started off as working out 2-3 days a week and eating more healthy. Then I got obsessed with the high of the work outs and seeing results. I started working out 6 days a week and some times twice in the same day. I was only eating once a day and it was dry chicken and some veggies. I became obsessed with how skinny I could get. And I got very skinny!! I was so small I was photoshopping my body bigger for my IG pictures. Then I went a step further and went to a doctor to get a consultation for liposuction. He suggested lipo and a tummy tuck, making my waist 7 inches smaller (I was a 26 inch waist at the time). And that’s when I realized I had taken it too far!

Finding Balance: My highs are high and my lows are low. Having balance in my life is something I have always struggled with. I mean, it looks nice when I see others having balance. Just not sure how to accomplish that for myself. It almost feels like I’m not giving my full effort.

In 2020 I began working on finding more balance in my life. I worked on doing activities that use a medium amount of energy. Nothing to over stimulating and nothing to blah. It was my big attempt to find that balance. If I’m being completely honest, I got really bored lol! I was created to live life vibrantly and with a lot of excitement.

Always be unapologetically authentically YOU!

Joggers | Similar Tank | Similar Sunglasses

Healthy & Delicious Recipes I’ve Been Loving

At the beginning of the year I decided I wanted to start cooking more. I’ve never really been much of a cook. And when I do cook it’s so basic and boring I don’t enjoy it. In 2020 I got into a bad habit of ordering take-out for dinner almost every night. Although I was ordering “healthy” most nights, how healthy is it really? That’s the question I asked myself when I was killing it in the gym and still couldn’t loose weight.

I wanted to take control over all the food I’m eating, be more healthy and loose weight. In the last year and a half I’ve gained about 25 pounds. I can’t stand gaining weight and looking in the mirror and feeling like my body isn’t mine. I didn’t want to do some crazy crash diet. I want to create a healthy lifestyle that is sustainable.

For the last 7 weeks I have cooked healthy and delicious meals. Dinners that are full of flavor that I enjoy eating and look forward to! With the change in cooking my own healthy meals and working out, I have lost 8 pounds. More important than that, I feel so much healthier and stronger!

I want to share a couple of my favorite recipes that I have made. These are recipes that I have sent to my friends and have made multiple times because they are that good! They have tons of flavor, are not boring, and are great left over the next day. I will also share my tweaks and tips that I find helpful for each recipe. If I can make these meals, you can too!

Roasted Broccoli Quinoa Salad

I got this recipe off Eating Bird Food, you can see the entire recipe here. This recipe was a huge surprise to me how amazing it is! When I read the recipe nothing about it seemed like it was be so delicious. But the flavors are all so incredible I enjoy every bite and want to keep eating.

My changes: I always need a protein with every meal. The first time I made this bowl I added steak. The second time I made it I added chicken. Both are equally as delicious. The rest of the recipe I made as is. This recipe is what got me obsessed with roasting my vegetables, especially kale. I now roast kale almost every day and put it with everything. It’s great in a salad to add a crunch.

Avocado Shrimp Quinoa Bowl

This recipe comes from What’s Gaby Cooking. I have been following her on Instagram for years and have baked many of her yummy desserts and they are always so delicious!! (check out her chocolate chip banana bread and snickerdoodle cookies!) This is the first dinner recipe of hers that I have tried and it did not fail me. You can find the recipe here.

My changes: This is the first time I have made shrimp. All I can say is do not be intimidated. It was so simple! The same as grilling chicken. The recipe calls for 1/2 pound of shrimp. I made a whole pound and I was glad I did. The flavor on the shrimp is delicious, but everyone who ate it (except me) said it was a little too spicy. Unless you like very spicy food, I would cut back on the cayenne and chipotle pepper.

The homemade Pico de Gallo is very delicious, but also time consuming. If you are able to make it the day before or earlier in the day it will save a ton of time when cooking dinner. Or if you don’t want to do all that chopping and dicing you can buy one already made at the grocery store.

This dish is incredible left over. I stored all the ingredients separate from each other to keep them fresh. The bowl tasted the same the next day.

Lemon Herb Salmon

I got this recipe from YouTube channel More Seasoning. You can find the recipe here. He shows 3 different versions of how to make salmon, they all look amazing. I have only made the lemon herb salmon and it is delicious!

My changes: I made the salmon just like the recipe and I would not change anything about it. It was so delicious! I absolutely love the tip on how to wrap up each salmon filet individually in foil. It keeps the salmon so tender and there is no mess to clean up.

I made roasted green beans and kale to go with me. As my friend and I ate the salmon and veggies we couldn’t get over the flavor and how good it is! We kept saying it tastes way too good to be completely healthy. And, I made an extra salmon filet and ate it for lunch the next day. So happy I did!

Extra Cooking Tips that Have Helped Me

Make extra of every dinner. My days are very busy and I never want to spend time making lunch. Having healthy leftovers I can grab quickly keeps me on track to being healthy.

Always have cooked chicken in the fridge. I cook chicken 2-3 times a week for dinner. I lightly season it and cook about a pound extra. I cut it up the extra and keep it in my fridge. Chicken is so diverse, I can throw together a salad, mix it with salsa for tacos, etc.

Get a George Forman grill. I purchased one the beginning of January and I use it almost every night!! I purchased this one. It makes grilling soooo quick and easy! Then the grill plates remove and I put them in my dishwasher. I don’t know how I’ve lived without one.

Try new foods, new recipes, don’t be intimidated and have fun! I have began to enjoy cooking and I now look forward to it! I turn on music or my favorite tv show and zone out. It’s also a great time for my kids to come talk to me about their day. And there is great satisfaction in serving my family eating a delicious meal that I cooked!

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Try-On Haul 2019

It’s that time of year again… I love the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!! I have shopped this sale for well over 10 years. This year I didn’t get as many pieces as I have in years past. But the pieces I did get I am completely obsessed with! I think I was a little more picky this year.

Here is my haul of everything I purchased! There are also some items I am adding at the bottom that are online only, which I plan on ordering for myself. Also at the bottom I am including items that I recommend getting. These are items I already have in my closet and I love so much I know you will too.

Icon & Ambassador card holders can shop online and in stores today. All Nordstrom card holders can shop tomorrow, Friday July 12th.

Happy Shopping :) XO, Rachel

OUTFIT DETAILS

Socialite Leopard Tee | Mother Denim | Steve Madden Booties

Mother Denim: This denim is one of my favorite things I purchased of the whole sale. I love the matte black button detail on the front. The fit is amazing! They are high waisted but not too high waisted. Fit true to size.

Leopard Tee: This tee is sooo soft and is a great quality for the price. It also comes in a traditional leopard color. I’m totally obsessed with the green! I sized up to a medium for a more slouchy fit.

Booties: I love the side slit and stud details. They have a great comfortable heel and I can tell I can wear these all day. They are much more of a true jet black then the photo makes them look.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Leith Wrap Dress | Similar Pumps

I have been looking for a red body con dress for a while. Dresses like this are to versatile. You can wear them dresses up with heels. Or dressed down with an oversized denim jacket and sneakers. This dress is very stretchy, I’m wearing a small. And it’s currently on sale for $31!!

OUTFIT DETAILS

Leather Jacket | B.P. Tee | Good American Denim | Leopard Scarf | Steve Madden Booties

Good American Denim: This denim is a great fit for a curvy body!! They are a true high waist. Comfortable fabric and very stretchy. Currently I am between a size 4 & 6 in denim. These run big and are so stretchy I am wearing the size 2. I also love the hem detail of them! It will look so cute with white sneakers. I have a feeling these will be my every day go to denim!

Leopard Scarf: I feel the need to purchase a new leopard scarf every year for fall. It’s one of my staples. I love the print of this one and the colors. And it is very warm!!! I started to sweat taking the pictures. It will be great for cooler weather.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Leopard Scarf | B.P. Tee | Mother Denim

Same leopard scarf as above. I wanted to show how cute it is with black denim. Like I said, the scarf is so warm so I left my short sleeve tee on. In cooler weather I would wear a long sleeve tee or sweater. Black, white and leopard is such a classic look!

Mother Denim: This denim is one of my favorite things I purchased of the whole sale. I love the matte black button detail on the front. The fit is amazing! They are high waisted but not too high waisted. Fit true to size.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Rails Jacket | B.P. Tee | Good American Denim | Booties

Rails Jacket: These jackets are always so easy to wear and so cute. They have fun details and great colors. Throw it on with jeans and a tee or with a pair of leggings. Wear booties or sneakers. They are very versatile. And always sell out almost immediately on the sale, so don’t wait.

B.P. Tee: Every year Nordstrom has a B.P. tee on the sale. This year is the best one so far. I can tell they have upped the quality from years past. For only $11, I’m getting more colors.

Good American Denim: This denim is a great fit for a curvy body!! They are a true high waist. Comfortable fabric and very stretchy. Currently I am between a size 4 & 6 in denim. These run big and are so stretchy I am wearing the size 2. I also love the hem detail of them! It will look so cute with white sneakers.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Adidas Tank | Zella Leggings | Addidas Sneakers

Adidas Tank: Love a good work out tank that can be work at the gym then out to run errands. This is a great staple tank that works for everyone. Runs true to size. There is really cute matching leggings to this tank. They weren’t in store and I plan to order them.

Zella Leggings: This is a great staple legging everyone should have in their closet. They are very thick and figure flattering. They are great for day to day running errands, living life, etc. I don’t wear them to work out in. Because they are so thick I don’t feel like the breathe enough for me.

Adidas Shoes: I really am obsessed with sneakers. My life has changed and has gotten so casual over the last year or 2. I pretty much live in sneakers now. These are sooooo super cute!!! I love black work out sneakers (because I typically wear all black to the gym) and these have the metallic gold which makes them even better! I am a true 8.5 in shoes. That’s what I bought without trying them on. They have plenty of room, even wondering if I should have gotten an 8. But with a sock the 8.5 will be perfect.

OUTFIT DETAILS

B.P. Top | B.P. Shorts | Ugg Slippers

Top & Shorts: So soft and so comfy!!! This set is so comfortable and not to heavy, so it will work in all climates (except maybe not really cold winter). I always size up to a medium in my loungewear and pj’s because I want them extra comfy.

Ugg Slippers: I love Ugg slippers and have always wanted a pair. I love how warm and cozy they are. And they have a nice sole to them to make them great to wear around the house all day on cold days. When I saw they were on the sale this year it was a no brainer I had to get them!

OUTFIT DETAILS

B.P. Crop Hoodie | B.P. Joggers | Ugg Slippers

Hoodie & Joggers: This is another thing I purchased that is one of my favorites! I love a cute matching loungewear set. Something I can wear around my house when my friends come over to watch a movie and I still feel cute. This set is so soft and a little warmer. Wearing a size medium.

Ugg Slippers: I love Ugg slippers and have always wanted a pair. I love how warm and cozy they are. And they have a nice sole to them to make them great to wear around the house all day on cold days.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Nordstrom PJ Set | Ugg Slippers

Nordstrom PJ Set: I have this set in a shorts set and also in an oversized sleep shirt. It’s one of the softest fabrics I have ever felt. I’m obsessed!! I was so excited to see the pants/long sleeve set on the sale. This is such a comfy set! This set does run a little large, I’m wearing a small.

Purity Set | Oribe Set

Purity Set: This is my favorite go to cleanser for years. I love it! It gets all my makeup off and keeps my skin clear. I bought this set last year on the sale and the big purity cleanser bottle just ran out last week. I use the big bottle to refill my smaller bottles. For $55, that is a great deal for facial cleanser for an entire year!

Oribe Set: Oribe is my favorite hair product brand by far! The dry texture spray is one of my favorite products they make, I can’t live without it! It gives my hair so much volume and texture. I’m also obsessed with their hairspray. This is a great value for 2 full size products!

MORE CLOTHING I LOVE & ORDERING

SHOES I NEED

BEAUTY MUST HAVES

MUST HAVE HOME DECOR

NORDSTROM SALE DETAILS