Mercury Retrograde and J.Mclaughlin swing dress

Hi Guys!

I heard someone say yesterday that Mercury was in retrograde and I completely believe it!  I made it safely to California to visit my grandparents, but getting here was quite the battle.  Mercury Retrograde may be a wives tale, but it sure would explain a lot.  Apparently we are at a peak retrograde season which rules travel delays, communication issues, contracts, which you can imagine is not ideal when you are 1) changing you name (more about this in another post!) 2) traveling.

I spent Monday going back and forth to the SS office... (yes Jonny and I have been married for 2 1/2 years and I am just changing my name).  Then the DMV and they were still unable to change my name because I only brought a copy of my marriage license and not the original (so then I had changed my name at the passport office, social security, but not DMV).  As you can imagine this made things a little tricky at the airport!  

Because my names didn't match (although I have been using my maiden and married name for two years) and I only had my temporary license and non matching passport, I was flagged for double screening.  I very much appreciate the lengths TSA is taking to keep us all safe so, no complaints there, but the name change is such. a. pain!!!!! I barely made my flight and had almost as much trouble renting my car.

As you can imagine I couldn't be happier to be relaxing and spending time with my grandparents.  I can't wait to share more with you from my trip with them.  I wore this dress to dinner with Nana and Papa my first night here.  I wanted to be a little more casual so wore sandals and a cardigan over my shoulders, but I am already planning to wear it with pumps (like these) to a wedding this summer!  Sizing wise, I am wearing a 0 and hemmed it about two inches (I am 5 '2ish) so am sure to tailor a lot of my dresses to get the exact fit that I want!

Hope you are having a wonderful week! I am off to Scottsdale tomorrow for Molly's bachelorette (crossing my fingers I have a little better luck traveling tomorrow!).  If you have any recommendations please send them my way!  

Wedding Season Brights

Happy Wednesday, Friends!

Apologies for the lack of posts lately, guys - the last few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions and some days all I can think to type is "%$&@!". I can imagine that would not be very interesting, so I have just been quiet when I need to.  Some days are easier than others and our home is a little quieter, which is hard, but I have started a new routine which has helped.  So thank you, friends, for your support while I get through this - you've been amazing!

I don't know about you guys, but this wedding season has been a busy one for us - wooh!  We just returned from Michigan via Chicago and are headed right back to Chicago (on the same exact flights, actually) this weekend to celebrate another wonderful couple.  Luckily we love weddings!

Although its a busy time, Jonny and I agreed early on in our relationship that we would attend as many of our friends weddings as we possibly could.  It is such an honor to be able to share in a couples special day.  It's also such a fun time to reconnect with old friends and meet new ones from all over.

I also love wedding season because it means that bright dresses will be out in full force.  I love this dress that I wore to our friends wedding last weekend.  The midi length is perfect for dancing and the peek-a-boo hem, low back, and cut out in the middle make it a little more flirty than your average midi dress.  Stock is low in these, but they still have some sizes available (I am wearing a small).  I also like this one, this one, and this one for an outdoor affair.

I have been wearing these shoes everywhere and they are a steel under $20! I also get a lot of questions about my clutch - I actually, often use it as a wallet and toss it in my tote and grab it easily when I need something less bulky.

Do you have any must sees/dos for us in Chicago? We are excited to have a few days to explore! Have a great rest of your week.

xo

Denver Darling turns 1 (and a few things I've learned along the way)

Happy Monday, Friends

I hope you had wonderful weekend!  Yesterday Denver Darling turned a year old - I started the day with a delicious brunch with some of my favorites at Postino (super excited they have brunch now!), then celebrated one of my favorite mommas to be, Jourdan (here) at one of the most beautiful showers I have ever seen.  It was such a wonderful day full of friends and love and I just felt so refreshed.

As a little kid, you know how you think about your birthday 9 months a year?  That is kind of how I thought about this day.  Starting something that was my very own was so important to me, and even more important that I saw it through, so this was a big milestone.  I never thought I would be a "blogger" I just wanted to create a place to share my favorite things with my girlfriends (and their friends) and fell into blogging along the way.

This whole year has been a wonderful time of self discovery and learning.  I really feel like I learn something new every day!  Before starting Denver Darling the only forms of social media I occasionally participated in were Facebook and Pinterest (a lot of Pinterest actually... my poor husband).  I accidentally stumbled on blogs through Pinterest, but didn't actively read any on a regular basis.  I joined Instagram about a month prior to our wedding (fall of 2014) just to ensure that I could see photos that people had hashtagged (also had no clue what that really meant).  

After our wedding, friends and family started coming to me for advice and suggestions for wedding dresses, boutiques, hair and nail salons, restaurants and photographers and I realized that I wanted to start "a girls guide to Denver".  I started using Instagram (not sure what I did each morning before this) on a regular basis and reading blogs to get ideas of how I wanted my blog to look and not look and sound and not sound.  This blog started as a place for my girlfriends to visit for ideas on where to go in Denver, but it has become so much more to me.  I come here to share my feelings, get inspired, hopefully share inspiration and have met some incredible people along the way.

I am so  thankful for this last year.  Denver Darling has taken me to some amazing places (here, here, here, and most recently here).  However, my favorite thing so far about blogging is the community and support system built within it.  I have met so many wonderful girls (and a couple of guys) and it is so refreshing to see the way everyone encourages each other.  I have met some of the sweetest people through blogging that I never in a million years would have connected with otherwise, and I am so glad that I have.

I receive a lot of questions about starting and maintaining a blog - below are 10 things that I have learned throughout the last year, and hopefully can be helpful to you too.

10 Things I've learned About Blogging

  1. If you have been thinking about starting a blog, take the leap and just do it! Chances are if you have something to say, advice you want to give, something you want to share there is someone who wants to hear it.
  2. Stay true to yourself.  This is my favorite piece of advice.  I don't share anything that I don't believe in or love, it would come across as inauthentic and I believe, if someone doesn't like it they don't have to read it.
  3. Write what you want to write.  There is some truth that you should write what your readers want, but readers won't want to read something that you yourself are not excited about.
  4. Use your voice. You know how Dr. Suess says, "There is no one alive who is Youer than You" - your voice sets you apart from everyone else.
  5. It is ok to take a break.  I always get a little separation anxiety when we go on vacation, but it is good to take little breaks to refresh and come back with new ideas even if it means not posting as often as you normally would.  I used to get really stressed about this, but realized my blog would still be here when I got back :)
  6. Work with other bloggers.  I have enjoyed meeting other Denver bloggers and making new friends through social media and it is amazing to see how supportive and encouraging other women can be.  
  7. You don't have to post.  I used to think I had to post a certain number of times a day or week, but if it is not something you are excited about posting... don't.
  8. Photos....  I work with a wonderful photographer Corey Anthony for most of the photos on my blog, about half of the photos on my instagram are taken with my iphone and I use VSCO for editing so all of pictures have a similar tone.
  9. Use hashtags.  I didn't love using hashtags for a long time.  I thought listing too many looked silly, but it really does help people find you when they are searching for something specific.
  10. It is your blog, no one can tell you what is right or wrong, make it what you want and have fun with it!

I loooove this dress BTW - it is another ChicWish style.  I love their affordable, yet high quality designs.  This little number is under $70!  As i mentioned last week, sometimes their clothes can take a little bit longer to arrive so if you order, plan accordingly with expedited shipping or a few weeks before your event.  Also, I wear (and wore) these shoes with pretty much every spring and summer dress and will be getting a new pair soon because I have worn them so much and I need a new pair for this wedding season... they are just so easy and go with everything from dresses to jeans and even shorts!

Have a wonderful week - would love to hear your feedback and happy to answer any questions below or through email abby@denverdarling.com.

xo