Gift Guide #4: For Him

We allllllllll know guys wait until the last minute to let us know what they want for Christmas. So, no fear, I’ve linked some last minute items for your man, dad, brother, or grandpa that are sure to be a hit with any guy!


Native Union Charger Set

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Earlier this year, I was introduced to Native Union through my boyfriend after he forgot to pack our chargers as we were leaving our hotel room in Vegas (charger packing and tech things are his job — he took full responsibility!). Anyway, he immediately turned around to purchased these amazing chargers from Native Union and we’ve been hooked ever since! The best part is that Native Union sells a plethora of cables in all lengths and sizes!

MVMT Watches

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I absolutely love MVMT watches! They were founded on the ideals that style shouldn’t break the bank and that luxury can be affordable. These watches are some of the best quality for the money that I’ve ever seen. With so many styles, these are definitely going to be a hit with any guy on your list!

Jack Black Gift Set

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Jack Black has become one of the most requested items from the guys in my life! The gift sets are great for stocking stuffers or an all-in-one gift at an affordable price point.

Happy Socks

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Happy Socks are probably the funkiest, yet coolest dress sock on the market right now and, I mean, who doesn’t love getting fun socks these days?

Patagonia Quarter Zip

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Patagonias are not only practical, but on trend. If your guy isn’t into prints and designs, these quarter zips are the perfect alternative!

Chukka Boot

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Chukka boots have been a necessity with the guys I know. They’re stylist, go with so many outfits, and can be dressed up or dressed down. What more could you honestly want as a guy than a shoe that makes getting ready more effortless than it already is.

Sephora Cologne Sampler

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Possibly the best gift for picky guys on your list! With this gift set, they’re able to redeem a voucher for a cologne of their choice.

Slippers

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Men don’t always like to admit it but they love slippers just as much as women do. These Ugg slip on slippers are some of the comfiest you can buy and will make your man feel like he’s walking on a cloud!

Google Home or Google Wi-Fi

Google Home is a super convenient device to have in your home because you can do just about anything with a google home system. From playing a Spotify playlist to getting the answer to a perplexing question — google home has your man covered. Google Wi-Fi is an incredibly easy device to set up and syncs with an app to make managing it super simple.


Many of these items can be purchased on Amazon Prime, too! I hope this gift guide helps you navigate the tricky world of shopping for men.

Happy Holidays from me to you!

xx, Kaitlyn

Gift Guide #3: For The Person Who Has Everything

gift guide

Case App – With so many of the same, types of phone cases and laptop skins on the market, it’s often hard to find one that you haven’t seen 100 times before. If you’re shopping for someone who “has everything” chances are they probably have the latest and trendiest tech accessories. Well, Case App allows you to design and create your very own, customized phone cases and laptop skins! This means you complete and total creative freedom to really give that special person on your list exactly what they’re looking for. Use my code ” KAITLYN20 ” for 20% off until December 22nd!

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Amazon Prime subscription – With everything accessible at the touch of your finger tips, Amazon Prime has quickly become one of the most useful services to purchase. What better way to say, “Happy Holidays” than with a year of free Prime! The best thing about Amazon Prime is that having access to Prime doesn’t just mean fast shipping and awesome discounts. It also means having access to Amazon Movies and other fun Amazon features that are sure to bring delight for months to come!

Monthly Subscription Box – I am all about monthly subscriptions and I love giving them as gifts! I think it’s so fun to open a little present each month that gets delivered right to my door. Some of my favorite monthly subscription boxes include UnderClub Co, Hum Nutrition, and Sephora Play!. Let me dive a little deeper into each box and give you the low down on why I love them all.

1. UnderClub is a luxury underwear subscription service for women. They pride themselves on delivering the best products to women to help them start their day off feeling their absolute best. I love the high quality items I’ve received and I love how simple it is to try new products because they’re delivered to me each month. I highly recommend giving this subscription service a try! You can sign up for 3, 6, and 12 month services on their website! Grab your UnderClub gift here

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2. Hum Nutrition is a monthly vitamin subscription service that, in my opinion, trumps all the rest. I have been obsessed with Hum Nutrition for years and I absolutely love getting new products in the mail each month. The sign up process is super easy and literally as simple as 1, 2, 3 …! After signing up for a subscription, you’re paired with a nutritionist that helps guide you through your journey to better health. You can customize your monthly box each month which makes giving this subscription as a gift to someone who has everything, the best possible!

3. Play! by Sephora It’s no secret that I’m a long time Sephora lover. I’ve tried allll of the other makeup subscription boxes and, while I like them, none of them have ever compared to the value I find in my Play! by Sephora box. What I love most in comparison to other monthly makeup subscriptions in the same price range is that with Play! by Sephora you’re promised 6 of their best selling or hottest trending products. One of those products will be a perfume sample and the other five will be something that you’ll actually use instead of throwing in your sample drawer and forgetting about it. For only $10 per month, I think this is a steal!

The best thing about giving a subscription of monthly boxes to someone that has everything is that they’re getting something new each month.

S’well Bottles – I am obsessed with S’well bottles and I have amassed quite a collection … good for me but not good for my cupboards and to be quite honest, lack of storage space. Anyway, with so many different designs and sizes of S’well bottles, there’s sure to be something for everyone. The best thing about S’well bottles is that they encourages you to drink more water and who doesn’t want that? They’re perfect to take on an airplane, to a workout class, to the office, or even just to keep in your car to refill at your connivence.

Popsocket – THE MOST UNDERRATED PRODUCT OF 2017! I am in love with my popsocket and I truly cannot imagine going back to the days before I had a popsocket on my phone. You know; the days of laying in bed, looking at your phone, and dropping it on your forehead? Or, how about, trying to take the perfect group selfie but your phone slipping out of your hand and cracking your screen as it falls onto the cement? Sound familiar? With a popsocket, you’re able to stabilize your phone and give your poor pinky a rest while texting. Not to mention, for less than $15 you can completely customize your popsocket and give one of the most practical and meaningful gift this year!

Tile – Never lose your things ever again! This little device pairs with your phone via bluetooth to help you track down anything it is attached to. If your item is within a 100-foot bluetooth radius of your phone, Tile plays a loud tune until your find it. This is literally the best gift anyone could give in my option, because I can’t even count how many times I’ve lost my keys, purse, sunglass case, etc… and have wasted hours looking for items that were right in front of me all along.

An Experience – If you think about it, the reason why someone claims to “have everything” is because they’re just craving an experience or just itching to spend some quality time with you. Ticket to a concert, or a show like cirque du soleil, or a fun night out at a food and drink tasting festival are all really incredible gifts that can be shared together making memories.

 

xx, Kaitlyn

Gift Guide #1: Self-love

Happy December 1st! Can you believe that December 2017 is already here? Like, I’m still trying to get over the fact that 2005 was literally 12 years ago (who’s with me on that?). So, to welcome December with open arms, I’m kicking off the month with a series of themed gift guides for those special people in your life.

gift guide

Self-love is something that I take very seriously. I think it’s so important to take time out of each day to do something that fills you with joy, no matter what it is. Too often we forget to love ourselves first, we forget that we’re the only version of us that we’ll ever have. Mentally, physically, and emotionally, it’s critical to fill our souls with good energy. There are many ways to show yourself some good old self-love, I personally like to take time out of each day to decompress from the day and calm my mind. The best part is that, because there are so many ways to relax your body and mind, you’ll never have to fall into a stagnant routine.

One of the best ways to completely relax is to make a date with your favorite, local spa. I’ve had the pleasure of partnering with Mojo Spa in Wicker Park to bring some of the best deals of the holiday season to my readers. Mojo prides itself on their handmade soaps, skincare, and cosmetics that are made in small batches with good-for-you ingredients and formed into fun, creative designs! This Chicago-based beauty company has shared their ideals of merging beauty and comfort with celebrity fans and customers all over the globe. For over ten years they have been manufacturing, developing, and testing their own recipes! I’m all about handmade products that are made with fresh ingredients which makes this collaboration with Mojo a perfect fit!

I received my very own pumpkin pie bath soap, which is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. The time, dedication, and attention to detail is just phenomenal! The best part about this soap is that it has anti-inflammatory benefits and is packed full of antioxidants.

With the holiday season in full swing, Mojo has launched their special Golden Ticket offer with any $200 in-store or online product purchase! A Golden Ticket could be anything from a $25 signature mani/pedi to 30% off products. This offer is only valid until December 24th so jump on this opportunity while you can!

If you’re a Chicagoland local, you can book a nail appointment at Mojo or stop by the store to pick up a few of their products. Gift sets are available for any occasion but especially for the holidays and at such reasonable price points. If you’re not local, no worries! They ship worldwide!

I am so excited to continue this gift guide series and I hope you are too! Other guides you should be on the look-out for include a gift guide for her, a gift guide for him, and a gift guide for the person who has everything! Happy Holidays!

xx, Kaitlyn

 

Black Friday Steals and Deals

When you think of Black Friday, some words that come to your mind are probably “chaotic” or “crazy, but I’m here to help you navigate some of the best deals you can score this year! Personally, I’m a huge fan of Black Friday. I love the thrill of finding deals, saving money, and buying gifts for others (… and myself, of course)! When I’m Black Friday shopping there are a few places I always, always have to hit up because the deals are usually unreal. I’m going to walk you through three places I know I’ll be headed this Friday.

One of the first places I head to is always Target. Target is amazing all year long, but, Target always has the best Black Friday deals. I’ve compiled a list of some of the items I’m most excited to get my hands on for friends and family this year.

Fitbit Charge 2 – $99.95 which is a savings of $50

Beats Studio2 Wireless headphones – $159.99 which is a savings of $220

iRobot Roomba 614 robotic vacuum – $199.99 which is a savings of $100

Ninja Professional kitchen system – $99.99 which is a savings of $100

Threshold fuzzy blankets – $18 which is a savings of $21.99

Google Home – $79 which is a savings of $50


*** I have a $300 Target giftcard giveaway live on my Instagram right now (ending 11/22/17). Feel free to enter here! ***

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The next store I always head to is Express. I typically stray away from Express just based on the price for the quality but Express always runs a 50% off everything deal during Black Friday. This is a great time to stock up on sweaters and other layering pieces! Here are some of my favorite items included in the sale!

Extreme Circle Hem Cowl Neck Sweater – $34.95 normally $69.90

Editor Pick Cold Shoulder Sweater – $29.95 normally $59.90

Off The Shoulder Balloon Sleeve Sweater Dress – $34.95 normally $69.90

(Minus The) Leather Jacket – $64 normally $128


I’m all about being able to buy gifts for friends that I know they’ll love and Sephora is always on the top of my go-to list, especially during Black Friday. I can find so many small add-ons to gifts that are affordable and practical. A lot of the best deals at Sephora can be found online or on their app which is where I head to avoid crowds and be an efficient shopper. Here are some of the items in my shopping cart!

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream – $15 normally $42

Benefit Bestseller Blowout – $15 normally $43

Bite Beauty Mini Multistick Duo – $15 normally $20


Are you Black Friday shopping? What are some stores on your go-to list? Let me know in the comments.

xx, Kaitlyn

 

Cider Mill SZN

Hey hey! Wow, has it been a minute since I sat down to write a blog post. One of my goals for the end of this year is to be better at managing my work life, social life, personal life, and hobbies (like blogging) so that I’m able to consistently deliver content to all of my incredible followers.

Let’s talk about this for a second, how in the world is it November already? I feel like this fall has flown by quicker than I can blink. October may be over but cider mill season doesn’t have to be. Michigan has no shortage of cider mills, that’s for sure. In fact, there are over 50 well-known cider mills across the state. Naturally, I held my own cider mill show down, just for fun, between three of the top cider mills in Michigan and compared them across three categories; overall atmosphere, cider (or cider slushies), and cinnamon sugar donuts. These categories are all important to the experience of a cider mill, in my opinion. I went to each of these cider mills on the same day, it was a beautiful autumn Saturday here in Michigan. One of those days that makes you so thankful to live in the mitten state, aside from the fact that it was 70 degrees in the middle of October (holy hot!).

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Disclaimer: I do not like donuts but will make an exception for cinnamon sugar donuts in the fall. I brought along my boyfriend, we’ll refer to him as “J”, for a second opinion on the donuts.

Blake’s Cider Mill

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Atmosphere

Blake’s Cider Mill is perfect for a day date or night out with friends. What I love most about Blake’s is the versatility the spacious grounds offer for people of all ages. If you didn’t know, Blake’s has a tasting room for their hard ciders and wines on site which is the perfect way to end (or start) a trip to a cider mill.

Cider Slushies

Perfectly frozen, fresh, sweet. I wish I could have taken the cider slush machine home with me, to be honest.

Cinnamon Sugar Donut

Crisp on the outside yet soft and dense on the inside. The cinnamon flavor was on point and paired very well with the cider slush.

Uncle John’s Cider Mill

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Atmosphere

More kid-friendly than the others and not as spacious as Blake’s but Uncle John’s also has a hard cider tasting room for their phenomenal hard ciders, my favorite is the blueberry hard cider. So delicious! I wouldn’t recommend visiting on a busy day because of the influx of families and crowds which equates to long lines.

Cider Slushies

Tart with sweet after notes. I’m a cider slush lover and wait all year long for them. I wasn’t a huge fan of the apples used to create the cider.

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

Not a favorite, actually. These donuts were lacking cinnamon flavor and were slightly dry compared to the others. They reminded me of a powdered donut rather than a cinnamon sugar donuts.

Yate’s Cider Mill

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Atmosphere

Congested on a busy Saturday, but quaint and perfect for a close up touch with nature.

Cider

Great apple flavor with a mix of sweet and tart apples.

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

These donuts were almost like a cake pop. They were so dense and moist all the way through, which I thought was incredible. They had great cinnamon flavor and were super fresh when we received them.


 

Overall Scoring:

Atmosphere

#1 Blake’s Cider Mill

#2 Yate’s Cider Mill

#3 Uncle John’s Cider Mill

Cider

#1 Blake’s Cider Mill

#2 Yate’s Cider Mill

#Uncle John’s Cider Mill

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

#1 Yate’s Cider Mill

#2 Blake’s Cider Mill

#3 Uncle John’s Cider Mill

All in all, these hot spots are incredible for your cider mill needs. Be sure to check them out in person and on social media, of course! Be sure to tag me (@collectivelykaitlyn on Instagram) in your posts if you make your way to any of these fantastic cider mills.

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What’s your favorite fall activity?

xx, Kaitlyn

 

NASH-ing!

Hey hey! Before I get into the blog for today, I wanted to touch on something I think is so important. I took a little time away from my blog to focus on some self-love. I think unplugging and removing yourself from the internet is so incredibly important especially if being online all the time (social media included) is a huge part of your job and one of your favorite hobbies. It’s perfectly okay to take a step back whenever you feel the urge to because there’s only one of you and you need to take care of yourself! One of my favorite self-love books to read when I’m trying to detox from the chaos of the internet is Light is the New Black. I linked it for ya, so feel free to check it out!


Okay, on into the goods. One of the things I love most about traveling is experiencing the sense of community a new city has to offer. I adore the feeling of being surrounded by people who just absolutely enjoy the place in which they live. It’s empowering! Recently, you all know I visited Nashville and I saw these adorable NASH hats at a boutique in The Gulch. I absolutely needed one! In addition to hats, there were tees and tanks with the words NASH or VILLE on them, cute right?. These simple yet oh so chic items won me over immediately. I had to learn more about this brand and that’s when I knew I needed to know more about how this company blossomed.

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The Nash Collection was started based on the lack of non-cheesey, chic, souvenir-type apparel items in Nashville. Aside from pleasing the tourists, there was a serious need for locals to feel a sense of identity with their city. I was so lucky to have the opportunity to talk one on one with Laci, the founder of The Nash Collection. Before launching The Nash Collection, Laci was able to do some recon through a boutique called Revv in Nashville to determine just how strong the demand was and, because of that, was able to deliver the products so many customers were dying to have. Their first round of NASH hats hit the shelves at Revv in July 2016 and it’s been a booming market ever since! One of the coolest aspects about The Nash Collection is most of their items are unisex so it’s not geared towards one specific gender.

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While I’m not a local to the Nashville area, I do feel at “home” when I’m there. Is that weird? Do you ever have that feeling like you’re just supposed to be somewhere? Nashville is truly such an inviting city with so many quirks and a whole lot of spunk. Not to mention tons (literally because they’re building so many new buildings with tons of metal, haha) and tons of new developments popping up all over the city. Nashville is an emerging, growing city with thousands of individuals and families moving to the area each month. Talk about an awesome influx!

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So, maybe you’re not in Nashville and maybe you have no desire to move there. Well, have no fear because The Nash Collection has expanded beyond Nashville and has plans in the future to keep expanding their brand. The best thing about this collection is the fact that you can sport these pieces literally any time of the day. If it’s at the gym, pool side, or throwing a VILLE tank on with a cardigan to run errands – there’s something for everyone! Be sure to check them out online and see what cities they’ve already expanded to. The Nash Collection didn’t just create a brand, they created a lifestyle!

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xx, Kaitlyn

 

Nordy Under Forty

Nordstrom Early Access

I know, I know. You’ve seen this sale taking over Instagram and circling the internet, but, with good reason! The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is a great time to stock up on the latest pieces for fall at discounted prices. If you’re a Nordstrom card holder you’re able to shop the sale before it opens up to the public on July 21st which is great because so many items on your wish list will completely sell out!

Okay, let’s get into the title of the blog post, “Nordy Under Forty”, what in the world does that mean? Well, I wanted to share with you my favorite, “need to have” pieces from this sale all under $40! Is it just me or does every company have incredible sales this time of year? I know my wallet is feeling the burn from it and yours probably is too.

First, we’ll start with a few basics. Basics are staple pieces that have to be in everyone’s closet because of the versatility each piece offers. Here are a few of the basics I snagged:

BP Pocket Tee 1890 vs 29

BP. Pocket Tee $18.90 VS $29.00 after the sale

Lush Raw Edge Side Slit Tee 1590 vs 24

Lush Raw Edge Side Slit Tee $15.90 VS $24.00 after the sale

 

Madewell Modern Linen Tee 3890 vs 5950

Madewell Modern Linen Tee $38.90 VS $59.50 after the sale (Madewell tees are the absolute best!)

 

Lush Side Slit Tank 1890 vs 29

Lush Side Slit Tank $18.90 VS $29.90 after the sale

 

Socialite Cozy Thermal Top 2490 vs 38

Socialite Cozy Thermal Top $24.90 VS $38.00 after the sale (skeptical at first but this is literally the softest top I own)

 

Next, I’m bringing you what I like to call the “I didn’t try too hard but still look put together” tops. These type of tops are my go-to when it comes to a lunch date, a casual meeting, or even to wear to work on some occasions.

Calson Stripe Bell Sleeve Tee 2590 vs 39

Caslon Stripe Bell Sleeve Top $25.90 VS $39.00 after the sale (white and black stripes + a bell sleeve = automatic favorite)

 

Lush Cold Shoulder Top 2990 vs 45

Lush Cold Shoulder Top $29.90 VS $45.00 after the sale

 

BP Lightweight Rib Cardigan 3190 vs 49

BP. Lightweight Rib Cardigan $31.90 VS $49.00 after the sale

 

Leith Bell Sleve Sweater 3890 vs 59

Leith Bell Sleeve Sweater $38.90 VS $59.00 after the sale

 

Gibson Tie Front Cozy Pullover 3990 vs 59

Gibson Tie Front Sweater $39.90 VS $59.00 after the sale (love the tie front detail!)

Okay, I can’t let this post go live without including some of the best deals in the athletic wear category too! I’m all about buying workout clothing at a discount but still having the option to wear name brands and look cute while I’m at the gym or in the spin class sweating it out – who’s with me?! These are my top picks for workout wear during the anniversary sale:

Nike Breathe Training Tank 3390 vs 45

Nike Breathe Training Tank $33.90 VS $45.00 after the sale (love this tank for spin class!)

Zella Constellation Kinetic Legging 3890 vs 59

Zella Constellation Cropped Legging $38.90 VS $59.00 after the sale

Nike Sportswear Essentials Tank 2690 vs 35

Nike Sportswear Tank $26.90 VS $35.00 after the sale

 

Last but not least, I have to throw in these jeans. They’re not under $40 but that’s why I saved them for last. I absolutely love AG denim and these jeans are priced at such a huge discount it’s totally worth the splurge. These are the hands down the most flattering pair of denim I own. I typically don’t like to spend crazy (in my mind) amounts of money on jeans but these are totally worth it! I know you’ll love them just as much as I do.

AG The Legging Raw Hem Ankle Skinny Jean 14990 vs 225

AG Raw Hem Legging Jean $149.90 VS $225.00 after the sale

There you have it, my list of top picks under $40 from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Items are selling out quickly so my advice is to buy now or forever wish you had. What’s on your list of “must haves” from the sale? 

xx, Kaitlyn