Thursday, November 29, 2012

Thursday Thrills, Throwbacks & Threads

Happy Thursday, loves! One more work day before the weekend...and t minus 15 work days until I am on vacation! I've never been more excited about sitting on my rear, watching The View, eating crap I shouldn't eat, and taking LOTS of naps...I. can. not. wait. Anyway, on to Thursday TTT.

THRILLS

{1} I pinned this bookshelf the other day. I just love it. So pretty.


{2} I FINALLY finished 1 Samuel. Yay! And learned a ton. David truly was a man after God's own heart. His wives (yes, plural) were kidnapped in chapter 30 and he STILL managed to "...strengthen himself in the Lord his God" (1 Samuel 30:6). Looking forward to jumping into 2 Samuel.
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{3} Happy birthday to me...from my friends at the GAP. Thanks, GAP. Very thoughtful of you. :)


{4} I'm out in California again for work this week. This time in Fresno. Not sure how or why, but I got upgraded to first class...again. Holler. Leg room, open-face turkey sandwich and warm mixed nuts...seriously, I could totally get used to this. I did stick out like a sore thumb though...had to ask my chatty neighbor (who has 2 kids, ages 3 and 4, and a ranch house in the middle of nowhere...a.k.a. Arkansas) for help pulling my tray table out. At first I tried to act like I knew what I was doing, but 3 minutes into the struggle, I decided to save face and just ask for help.


{5} Justin Timberlake in the Give it on up to Homelessville SNL Christmas sketch.
Seriously so funny. I love JT.

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THROWBACKS

This little baby with this fab navy polka dot dress...


Grew up to be a crazy, sometimes over-the-top, wife, daughter, sister, and friend.
With a life long love affair with polka dots.
Chosen by a gracious Father.
Grateful for 31 years of life.


THREADS

Remember my confession about not putting much effort into my style during the week? Well, when I travel and/or have to stand in front of people and act like I know what I'm talking about  present something, I do try just a tad harder to look like...something. So here you go. This is my stab at trying to look like something. :)

:: Details ::
top: Old Navy (here)
cardigan: Express (super old)
tweed skirt: thrifted ($6!)
necklace: Piperlime (old)
booties: Marshall's (similar here)

 
:: Details ::
sweater: Express (old)
pleated skirt: Banana Republic Factory
necklace: thrifted 
tights: Target
booties: Nine West Outlet


New to my blog? Read about the inspiration behind Thursday TTT here.

Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Tale of a Thrifting Rookie


I pinned this outfit not too long ago and loved the look so much that I immediately began a search for a midi skirt. I found this one but didn't want to spend 50 bucks for it so I put the search on a temporary hold.

A couple days ago I happened to wander into a nearby thrift store and scored a bunch of cute things...2 skirts, a jacket, 2 pairs of shoes, and a necklace...for $67! Woot woot! I've never been into thrifting much before...always thought it was a tad gross to put my bum in someone else's used clothes...but I think I'm a believer now. 

I got this gray pleated midi skirt for $6! And didn't even realize until I got home later that evening that this skirt was the missing piece to this outfit puzzle. I knew the recreation wouldn't be exact but when you're on a budget you have to work with what you've got. 



I think the polka dots and bun give it more of a June Cleaver or Stepford wife kind of feel, but it worked for me. And the skirt fits SO well. 

Side note confession time: I have a big butt, hips AND thighs. Sometimes it works for me, sometimes it doesn't. Case in point...skirts. It's so hard to find a well-fitted skirt when your waist is 26" and your hips are a whopping 40". Yikes. So just imagine yourself in the thrift store with me as I try on this SIX DOLLAR skirt and discover that it not only fits...but fits well...no alterations required. I considered doing a happy dance in the fitting room but got a hold of myself. Did I mention how much I'm digging thrift stores these days?

:: Details ::
chambray top & sunglasses: Target
sweater: Old Navy ( similar here | last worn here)
pleated midi skirt: thrifted (similar here)
necklace: thrifted
bracelets: Lauren Conrad via Kohl's
watch: MK (gift)
wedge booties: Nine West Outlet
nail polish: OPI Monsooner or Later 

Another side note confession: Taking outfit pics and posting them on this blog is kind of hard for me. It feels very...vain. A friend of mine asked me if I felt that way about other style blogs and, of course, I said no. I am totally inspired by real women of all ages, shapes and sizes showcasing their personal style via pretty pictures, tips, and sponsored deals. And my hope is that I'm able to do the same for my readers. Revelation aside, posing for pics and posting them for the world to see is still a little weird for me. But thanks to the stud below (a.k.a. my hubby), I received a little impromptu how to be natural and confident in front of the camera session. He told me to let him "show me how it's done".


And he worked it, didn't he y'all? haha! Such a stud muffin. And believe it or not, I actually did loosen up a bit after he "showed me" how to work it. :)

Have an awesome Wednesday!

Linking up with The Pleated Poppy for What I Wore Wednesday, Rolled Up Pretty for Whatever Whenever Wednesday, Because Shanna Said So for Random Wednesday, and Trusty Chucks & Texas Lovebirds for the Copycat Link-Up!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday Super Deal

Hey there! I've had my eye on these over-the-knee riding boots for awhile but $400 for one item is not and will not be in my budget in the foreseeable future. Never hurts to admire from afar though, right?

I wasn't planning on doing any online shopping for Cyber Monday because, frankly, I really don't need anything. But I just couldn't resist StyleMint's 70% off your first item deal. StyleMint is one of those online personal stylist all-in-one sites, so they normally don't have an extensive online catalogue. And today is no different. But I decided to check them out anyway because of the fab deal. And shut-the-front-door...looky here what I found!

Over-the-knee riding boots...regularly $119 but I got them for $35.99 + free shipping! Can I get a woot, woot...a woot woot! 

And a happy Cyber Monday to you!

Weekend Round-Up

Hey there! How was your weekend?

Mine was pretty low key. Thanksgiving with the fam was great. LOTS of eating. And talking and laughing. And more eating. Watched Khloe Kardashian in her starring role as the ultimate awkward co-host on the X Factor (side note: I happen to think Khloe is hilarious in real life...not sure why her personality doesn't translate on the small screen...on that note, I'm sure she could care less about my opinion of her hosting skills...so let me stay in my lane). On the drive home from my parents' house, we stopped by Target and waited in the electronics line for 30 minutes for a camera I've had my eye on.


Then I got to the register and let the sales guy talk me into buying a different camera. Only to turn around the very next day and return it for the camera I originally wanted. So basically my Black Friday experience was in vain. :)

On Saturday, I got up, threw some clothes on and headed over to Starbucks for some much needed quiet time with the Lord. Afterward, with my new camera in tow, I stopped by a nearby shopping center and snapped a few pics. Here are a few of them....pretty, right? I'm not much of a gadget girl, but I'm super excited about my new camera.



Late afternoon on Saturday, Kendall and I met up with my good friend, Kim, at a nearby nail salon for manis and pedis. After manis & pedis, we met the guys (my hubby & Willie, Kim's hubby) at Cheescake Factory for dinner.

via Instagram
Sunday was also pretty uneventful. We went to church, then dinner and grocery shopping.

How/where did you spend your long weekend? Did you score any good Black Friday deals?

xo,

Linking up with Sami for my weekend update!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Beautiful, But Ohhh So Overpriced!

One word: Anthropologie. I love Anthropologie & its modest, yet unique and vintage-y flair. Everything in that store is simply gorge. Everything. BUT with the exception of a monogrammed coffee cup or a frilly notepad, the stuff in there is SO overpriced! If I had $400 to spend on a dress I would go to Neiman's...not Anthropologie. But to each her own.

Other than an end of season sale, I don't frequent Anthro very often. But I will occasionally browse the store (or online) for style & design inspiration. Matter of fact, I stopped by there today and fell in love with quite a few things.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 

Isn't this stuff beautiful, y'all? A girl can dream, right? For now, I'll stick with Target, Old Navy, GAP Outlet, Marshall's, Forever 21, TJ Maxx Home Goods, etc, etc.

Which overpriced or high-end store(s) make you want to break the bank?

xo,

P.S. One more thing. I've noticed a trend/store favorite among style bloggers...J.Crew. And frankly, I don't get it. Why spend $150 on a sweater when you can get a MUCH more affordable version at Old Navy, GAP, or even Target? I hope you don't disown me for this confession. I just had to get it off my chest. :)

Sometimes Life Just Gets Busy

...and when life gets busy, I tend to prioritize everything else but the one thing that matters the most...unhurried time with the Lord. And as a result, I'm left feeling depleted. With nothing to give. Nothing to give God. Nothing to give those around me...including the closest person to me...my husband. And then I start feeling a distance from God. But I always remember this pin when I start feeling that way.


According to Luke 6:45, the good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. The true nature of the heart can often be seen when they speak off-the-cuff and without reflection. And let me just tell you that some pretty ugly stuff has been coming out of my mouth lately. Ugly and hurtful. Because my heart is not filled with the Word of the Lord. It's filled with...busyness.

I woke up this morning...starving. For spiritual food. Literally starving. So I got out of the bed, brushed my teeth, threw on some clothes, packed up my Bible & a notebook and headed straight to Starbucks...for some much needed and long overdue, unhurried time with God. Once I got settled, I asked God to show me something...anything...about myself.

via Instagram
I've been in 1 Samuel for awhile now. Mostly because I've been SO inconsistent with my quiet time. Anyway, I read chapter 23. And then chapter 24. And whadya know...God heard my cry. And He gave me a Word just for me. He's pretty darn awesome like that.

After Saul tries to kill David SEVERAL times, David is faced with a difficult decision...killing Saul or sparing his life. And he chooses to spare Saul's life out of respect for God's appointment of Saul as king and patience to wait for God's timing. Rather than return evil for evil, David chooses obedience. David was able to spare Saul's life because He was in tune with God.

Here's the bottom line...I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent me (John 5:30). I can do NOTHING apart from the Spirit of the Living God . I know that God desires the same obedient and loving response He got from David, from me. But when I'm empty...and depleted...starving of spiritual food...I have nothing good to give God or those around me. Nothing good. And worse, when I'm wandering aimlessly, I slowly but surely find myself outside of His will for my life. And I don't like who I become. Mean...impatient...vengeful...sarcastic...just plain ugly.

So I ask that you pray with me and for me...this prayer...

Lord, I recognize that I'm broken and still have a lot of work to do to address the ugly parts of my heart. Thank you for speaking to me through your Word. For clearly showing me the error of my sinful ways. Thank you for your grace and new mercies. For another opportunity to be in right standing with You and to reconcile with those I've hurt as a result of my ugly heart. I'm sorry for being too busy to spend time with you each day. And if/when I prioritize the busyness of life over You again, I pray You humble me just like You did today. In Jesus name, Amen.

If you're still reading, thank you for allowing me to ramble. I covet your prayers...today and everyday. How can I be praying for you?

xo,

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful Thursday + My OOTD

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Happy Thanksgiving, lovelies!
I hope your day has gotten off to a great start!

I'd love to tell you that I don't take the people and things in my life for granted. But sadly, I do sometimes. Not intentionally...but it happens. Not proud of it and I'm definitely working double time to not live as if even the next 5 minutes is promised to me. 
So today I thought it was fitting to share my top 5 thanks.



{5} My Career. For a career...not just a job. For the daily challenges...some good...others I can live without. :) For the many opportunities I've had to grow as a professional. For the financial resources that enable us to give, save AND spend.

{4} My Church & Community. For growth and accountability. For loving us enough to call us out on our crap.  For caring more about our holiness than our happiness. For the life long friendships we've developed.

{3} My Beautiful Friends. For every awesome conversation...the sleepless nights spent talking about absolutely everything and absolutely nothing all at the same time. For being a shoulder to cry on. For sharing and trusting me with your intimate moments. For being authentic and real with me...even when I don't necessarily want to hear the hard truth.

{2} My Hubby & Family. For loving me. For the good times & the bad. For letting me be me....crazy ol' me. For not walking away even when things get hard. For the thousands of laughs and unforgettable memories. For happily sharing in the present moments with me. For being just as excited as I am for the future possibilities.

{1} My Savior. For His sacrifice on the cross. For His unending, unconditional love. For His grace & new mercies. For providing a life roadmap through His Word. For the eternal life He's given me.

I bought these peachy-melon-colored-cropped-skinny jeans (wow, that was a mouthful) this summer.


Unfortunately, they totally lacked remixability (is that a word?). At least that's the excuse I made up in my head considering that I wore them ONCE all summer. To be honest, too many colors and patterns thrown together kind of scare me. In my mind, I feel like a look like a skittle. Not saying it can't be done because I've seen it done on others...and done well. But when I wear colored denim, I usually chicken out and go with a neutral colored top.  I know, I know...I told y'all my style isn't daring. :) Anyway, I found the cutest knit infinity scarf at Forever 21 recently...and whadya know...peachy-melon is one of the colors in the scarf. Woot woot! I was beyond excited to pull these jeans out of summer retirement.

A little summer + a little winter = a comfy brightly colored fall ensemble!

:: Details ::
chambray top & knit scarf: Forever 21
cropped skinnies: GAP Outlet
ankle strap flats: Old Navy

And the best part of all...I can stuff myself like nobody's business today and won't need to loosen my belt! ha!

Thursday Thrills, Throwbacks & Threads will be back in regular rotation next week. See you then!

xo,

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Styled By....Me?

Last Wednesday, I received this panicked text from my friend AshLeigh:

Angela! We have our Christmas photos scheduled for Sunday. The theme is vintage...Uhhh I can't find anything for me, Kennedy, & Karsyn??? Help

Ashleigh is a SAHM of 3 of the cutest little nuggets! She mentioned that she tried to do some shopping with her youngest (8-month old, Karsyn) but it was proving to be impossible. So I happily took on the challenge!

She sent me a few pics that inspired this idea! 


And the next evening, I headed over to H&M, Forever 21, Marshall's, and finally Old Navy. About an hour in to the search, I started getting nervous because time was closing in on me and I knew that was the ONLY night I would have time to pull this off before the photo session (now rescheduled from Sunday afternoon to Saturday afternoon). But just 2 hours later, I found ALL 3 outfits AND accessories! Whew!

Here are the looks I created:
And here's the final result...AshLeigh's vision and my speed shopping efforts brought to life!

Photography by D. Howard Photography
Aren't they the cutest family you've ever seen?! So flippin adorable. ;) 
And they pulled the vintage-y look off perfectly!

Although I'm no stylist, I am honored to have gotten the opportunity to serve my friend and her family. I work best under the gun and this little style challenge was kind of fun. Plus, the entire ambiance and even the SMELL of a mall excite me! Ha! I know...weird, huh? Surely I'm not the only one that loves the smell of a mall...don't leave me hanging, ladies!

Here's my OOTD...from Sunday ;)

 :: Details ::
sweater: JCPenney (here)
chambray top: Target
pants: Marshall's (last worn here)
wedge booties: Nine West Outlet
jewels: Target (necklace) & Charming Charlie (ring)

On a completely separate note, can you believe tomorrow is Thanksgiving?! Seriously, where did this year go?? Cra-zi-ness. BUT I'm excited to stuff myself like nobody's business. And not feel bad about it. ;)

xo,

Linking up with The Pleated Poppy for What I Wore Wednesday, My Girlish Whims for Your Whims Wednesday, Real Girl Glam for the Real Girl Style Link-Up, Rolled Up Pretty for Whatever Whenever Wednesday & Because Shanna Said So for Random Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Lasting Legacy + A Birthday Tribute


Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua and had known all the work that the Lord did for Israel. - Joshua 24:31

One word comes to mind when I read this passage of scripture: LEGACY. And a question: What do I want my legacy to be?

Hubby and I planned a weekend staycation/vision retreat earlier this year. Our #1 goal for the weekend was to create a family vision, goals, and milestones for the year. We used a 40-page guidebook with discussion questions that covered literally every aspect of life...faith, family, kids, finances, work, etc, etc. The question that struck me the most was what kinds of things would we want people to say in our eulogies when we're gone? And this was my answer: Angela loved and served God with all her heart; put others before her; was burdened by the lost; just an all around beautiful person inside and out; amazing wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend.

Sounds good, right? Yep, the retreat was awesome. I was really proud of the vision and goals we came up with. And I was determined to make some changes in my life to make these goals a priority. Except after a few weeks, the vision died. And we haven't looked at it or thought about it much since. Until recently.

I have a new sense of urgency after Sunday's sermon about the keys to ensure we (this generation) pass our faith to the next generation. In an age where we prioritize the 'here and now' and overly concern ourselves with money, clothes, cars, and things, we've lost our eternal mindset and forgotten God in the process. Much like the generation that came after Joshua's generation:

"...And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel." - Judges 2:10

This makes me so sad. Because this is a crisis. We're in a crisis, people. There are people dying everyday who don't know Christ as Lord & Savior...who will spend an eternity apart from Him. But rather than get completely overwhelmed and paralyzed by this, I recognize that when this life is over, I will be accountable for me...the decisions I made (or didn't make)...those far from God that I reached (or didn't reach)...the impact I made on this generation and generations to come. And although that is still a VERY heavy responsibility, I have to be willing to take it on. I have to. Because life is so much bigger than the 'here and now' and the next generation is depending on us. So sounds like I need to dust that vision off and start fresh.

At the end of the sermon on Sunday, we were challenged to answer 2 questions this week:

1} What is holding me back from loving and trusting God fully? What needs to change in my life to remove those barriers?

2} What needs to change in my household and/or schedule to ensure God is the #1 priority?

I'm still thinking about the answers to these questions. I'll let you know what I come up with. :)

Speaking of my legacy...my stepdaughter, Kendall, will be 6 years old tomorrow. :)


My hubby and I have been married for 3 years. When we started dating, Kendall was only a year old. And by the time we got married, she was only 3. And frankly, adjusting to married life AND becoming an instant family was tough for me...for all of us...much harder than expected. Someone told me once that parenting is a thankless job...and I would contend that being a stepparent is in a league of its own. You are expected to act as a parent but many times don't have the authority to make the same decisions you wouldn't think twice about making if you were the parent. Over the years, I have not been the best parent to Kendall. I've been very selfish. And often felt justified for feeling the way I did. But as she gets older, I've realized something...Kendall is a blessing to me. To my life. I believe God has shown me a lot about myself...the good, the bad, and the ugly...through this little person. And even though I don't always have decision-making power, I do recognize how much influence I have in her life. Positive influence. The ability to lift her up. Teach her about Jesus. Tell her how beautiful and smart she is. Because after all, she is a smart little girl. With a spunky personality. And she is loved. By all of us...and unconditionally by a great God.

And although we still have crazy days and frustrating moments as we learn to be a family unit, I am grateful for Kendall. Because I recognize that many people desperately want to be parents, but never get the opportunity for one reason or another. But I get that opportunity. So I'm committed like never before to show this child a Christ-like love with the hope that she will carry a legacy of love and reverence for God. She is the next generation.

Happy birthday, sweet girl!

 xo,

Monday, November 19, 2012

Weekend Round-Up

Hey girl, hey? How was your weekend?? Here's a recap of mine!

Friday

Went to work, of course. And had more work to do than I had hours in the day. What's new? I considered taking some days off this holiday week, but I decided against it so I can catch up while it's quiet in the office. Hopefully I'll actually get some work done and not be sucked in by the infamous blog monster...man...there are just so many great blogs out there...I could literally spend my days just reading blogs. But reading blogs doesn't pay the bills...not my bills anyway.

This was my OOTD:

sweater: Target (old)
t-shirt: Forever 21 (old)
cords: GAP Outlet
belt: Old Navy
flats: Forever 21 (here)
jewels: Francesca's Collections

After work, Q and I headed over to Naan Sushi to celebrate the birthday of our friend, Ernesto! It was a fun time.


Saturday

Saturday was mostly a lazy day. Later on in the afternoon, I stopped by Old Navy to check out their half off sale. I bought Kendall a few things...and bought myself a couple things, as well. I just couldn't help myself. ;) What can I say? I love a good sale.

We capped the evening with our life group.

Sunday

Went to the early service for the first time...ever. If I was a morning person, I would totally go to the morning service more often. There's something so great about getting to church early and having the rest of your day to do whatever you need to do to prepare for your week.

After church, I stopped by CVS to stock up on my Neutrogena cleansing & make-up removal wipes. My skincare regimen is VERY simple, so you'll probably never see a blog post about beauty products from me. I live for those make-up wipes, though. I just can't seem to get my make-up off good enough with soap and water. :|

Like Walmart and Target, I rarely come out of CVS with only the stuff I went in for...today's impulse buy was nail polish. I'm terrible with my nails...I love a good mani, but would rather spend my money on a cute pair of shoes. And I rarely paint my own nails because I dread removing the polish once it starts chipping. I know...first world problems, right? Anyway, as soon as I got home, I found some motivation to polish my nails with my new polish. Yay for pretty nails!


On Sunday afternoon, with the help of amazing volunteers from our church, we served our community a pre-Thanksgiving dinner. Pretty sure I've never shared with you that my hubby and I are a CARES team at an apartment community in Allen...wanna know more about this amazing program? Check it out here.

Have an awesome holiday week!

xo,

Linking up with Sami, Molly, Jenny, and Patti for my weekend update!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Thursday Thrills, Throwbacks & Threads

THRILLS

Thrill #1
My favorite twin, Tamera Mowry-Housley, had her baby on Monday! She's gonna be the best mama. Can't wait to see pics of the baby!


Source
Thrill #2
Are you kidding me, Starbucks? As if delicious coffee and pastries wasn't good enough. Then you decide to make yourselves 10x cooler by introducing wine AND vittles (I love that word!) after 4 p.m. each day! Happy hour at Starbucks...Genius. Seriously...who is the master mind behind this idea? I feel a girls' night coming on soon! 


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THROWBACKS

My gorgeous mom will be celebrating a birthday this Saturday! Boy oh boy, have we had an interesting ride the past 30 or so years. I was a tad sneaky as a kid, then turned into a complete and unruly nightmare of a teenager, then had a few rough years in my early 20's as I tried to find myself and my independence. Then something very unexpected happened when I turned 25...I started to actually like my mom. And appreciate her and all of the many sacrifices she made as a wife and mother. Since then, she has become one of my very best friends. We still have our differences...quite often actually. But it never takes long for either of us to get over ourselves. And before long, we're back to being besties. 


So this week's throwback is dedicated to my hot mama! 



Thanks for being a great mom & friend to me! You are sooo loved and appreciated! 
Happy birthday!


THREADS

I was reminded of something this week: beauty is fleeting. What's on the inside is what really counts, right? You can have all of the pretty clothes, shoes, and jewels in the world...but if the inside is ugly, what do you really have? Proverbs 31:30 says, Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. Don't get me wrong...I love pretty clothes and shoes as much as the next girl...but I don't want to prioritize or desire those things over filling my spirit with God's truth, which in turn allows me to be a loving influence and light to those around me. And that, my friends, is true beauty.


Source

New to my blog? Read about the inspiration behind Thursday TTT here.

xoxo,

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

OOTD Inspiration

Marion from Marionberry Style has become one of my favorite fashion bloggers! Even at nearly 8 months pregnant, she hasn't missed a single beat! I think I like her style so much because it's practical...and she manages to create the cutest ensembles with just the right combination of trends and classic pieces.

When I came across this outfit, I thought to myself..."Duh...I already have a gray blazer and plaid shirt in my closet". But I would've never thought to put the two together.

Which style bloggers have influenced your style lately?


Here's my re-creation!





plaid boyfriend top: GAP Outlet
blazer: Dillards (old)
skinnies: Target
booties: Steve Madden via Marshalls (old)
jewels: Francesca's Collections, Charming Charlie & MK
bag: LV

Linking up with:
pleated poppy

Real Girl Style Link Up
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