Shopping Fail at Nordstrom

Main Image - MARC JACOBS Mini Biker Nylon Backpack

As I’ve previously mentioned, Norsdstrom is having their Half-Yearly sale.  This backpack by Marc Jacobs in the mini size and in color Shadow was on sale for $104.98.  I was in checkout and as I was trying to input my credit card info, my cart updated itself to say the backpack was sold out.  Sold out!

I first saw this bag at the airport in Austin, Texas.  I fell in love with the zipper details because of the edgy vibe and its street style.  I’ve had my eye on it ever since, however when I saw retail price, I wasn’t willing to pay $200 for a nylon backpack.  With a 40% off sale, it’s definitely a bargain and one that I should’ve jumped on immediately.  Who knew this bag is popular.


A Travel Tote – What I Carry

I never caught onto the hype that the Louis Vuitton Neverfull makes for a good travel bag.  Some Youtubers rave that this is a good travel bag, but I’m not so sure.  I mean yeah if you’re going on a day trip and driving then I guess the Neverfull makes for a great stylish bag.  However, when flying this bag would drive me crazy since there’s no zipper to it.  I like my tote bag to be stowed under the seat in front of me so I can have access to my stuff without being subject to the seat belt sign.  That’s why I prefer traveling with my Longchamp Le Pliage tote in size large because it has a zipper which prevents things from falling out should random turbulence occur.  I also like that the bag is nylon so there’s no need to baby it especially if caught under a downpour or if accidental spills happen inside the bag.

Main Image - Longchamp 'Large Le Pliage' Tote

So what do I like to keep in my tote and why I want it to be zippered and secure for most of the time?  A bunch of things:

  1. A bottle of water or sweet tea in case I feel the need to drink more fluids on the plane.
  2. Since discovering skincare, I now pack travel skincare.  I like to keep these items close to me in case of spillage.  More importantly, I like having a face mist easily accessible.
  3. Passport (if traveling abroad)
  4. Wallet
  5. Keys
  6. Makeup bag
  7. Scarf  (after the flight I like to put my scarf away)
  8. Snacks

In my opinion and generally speaking, zippered totes provide a layer of defense against theft.  With the Neverfull, thieves can easily bump into you and who knows maybe reach into your unsecured bag and take something.

Recently, I found this bag from Henri Bendel called the Jetsetter Soft Tote that’s just as stylish as the Longchamp Le Pliage bag.  There’s also the possibility of putting a monogram on this bag, so this would make for a great grad gift for the wanderlust.  Right now there’s a sale happening on their website and the deal is a free monogram in addition to 20-25% off.

Zoomed image

If a more leather look suits your style, then Madewell has a vegan leather zippered tote option with a crossbody handle for arms free carrying. This can also be monogrammed.

Main Image - Madewell Zip Top Transport Leather Carryall

And if totes are not your style, there’s a backpack alternative from Dagne Dover pictured below.

There’s also this Longchamp backpack that’s really cute, but definitely not as big as the items shown above.  I’m thinking of getting this backpack in the near future because it looks perfect for day trips to the amusement park, for sightseeing, and also great for running errands around town don’t you think?

Main Image - Longchamp 'Le Pliage' BackpackMain Image - Longchamp 'Le Pliage' Backpack

For travelers out there, what stylish bags do you like to carry with you?




Companion Fare with Alaska Airlines

Free photo by Pexels

Anyone else a card holder with Alaska Airlines?  It’s about that time of year for when my companion fare renews.  It hasn’t yet, but I’m looking out for when it does because I’ve been thinking about where to travel next and have a few places lined up.  I’m not sure yet but if the cards align and within Alaska Airlines’ flight route, I’d like to use the companion fare ticket for me and my husband to go to one of the following places:

  1. Vancouver, Canada – I had a short visit once 10 years ago, but would like to explore a bit more in nice weather.  So if my husband and I were to go, we’d think about going in October.
  2. Costa Rica – I’d love to visit sometime in January or February just to get away from the cold for a bit.
  3. Toronto, Canada –  I’ve always wanted to see Niagara Falls and I feel like it’s drivable from Toronto as a day trip.
  4. Maui – Haven’t gone to this island yet and would love to explore it.
  5. New York, New York – I would like to explore Manhattan more especially in the fall.  It just seems more of a romantic time of year for a visit.

Where would you go?

Goodbye Austin

Welp Goodbye Austin! We really enjoyed the laid back atmosphere of this city. We enjoyed the barbecue (didn’t stand in line for Frank’s though), shopped a lot of Whole Foods, and just appreciated the kind and courteous locals.

Would I recommend staying for a week? Only if you’re staying in a nice air bnb with a bunch of friends or family, if you have timeshare, or if your hotel is in downtown. I say this because Austin is a small city and you can probably see most of it in a day or two. You’ll want some cool digs to hang out in or else you may get bored and homesick.

The city is very walkable. There’s also public transportation if you want to get around to the outer parts of town. However, the easier option would be to rent a car and drive. At least this way you’re not limited to just the downtown area. The cool thing about staying in Austin is its proximity to San Antonio and Waco. Both are about a 90 minute drive away, and we all know who’s in Waco. Chip and Jo of course! I really wanted to check out their new restaurant, but we never got a chance to go. So for those who are huge fans just know they are a short drive away!

Another Travel Hack

Travel tip: Prior to leaving your air bnb, hotel, or timeshare, wash all your clothes so you don’t have to do it when going back home. Lucky for us there’s a washer and dryer in our room. Doing this minor chore makes all the difference when coming back home because for us it’s one less thing to worry about.

A Perfume Review and Travel Hack

Getting free perfume samples is always great (got mine from Macy’s). Not only are they travel friendly, but you can actually test them for more than one use. I’d say I used this at least 3 times on this trip and I’m just at the halfway point of completion. I actually am really liking this scent by Paco Rabanne. It’s called Olympia and it smells great. It’s not too strong and a very manageable smell that doesn’t induce any headaches or anything (I’m pretty sensitive to smell).

I haven’t really given myself the opportunity to like perfumes, but this one is fantastic. I take that back. Actually my mother in law has already given me 2 perfumes, but they are just too strong and heavy to wear. One of them is by Chanel and the other by Oscar De La Renta. Sadly though they just aren’t my jam. This perfume however, Olympia by Paco Rabanne, has a light smell perfect for spring and summer time use. Don’t be surprised if I actually purchase this in the near future.

So again, not only is this a great way to use up free samples, it’s a great way to test them out. Basically, a frugal and travel hack all rolled into one.

Ended Up at the Alamo

Since we’re only a 90 minute drive away from San Antonio we decided to check out the Riverwalk and best of all the Alamo. It was quite packed today and I was surprised because Austin gives off such a chill vibe.

Then I realized it was packed for a reason. Apparently San Antonio is hosting the NCAA Final Four Men’s basketball championship. There was media coverage all around and tons of families out to support their team.

We got to the Riverwalk around 12pm, had lunch at the Hilton because it wasn’t busy, and then checked out the Alamo. By then crowds of people were pouring onto the streets, which signaled us to best start the journey back to Austin.

Don’t get me wrong, the Riverwalk looks like a great place to hang around, stroll, and have a nice little date but it was just too crowded for our liking. As for the Alamo it was probably the highlight of our short trip. It’s free to walk around and a great way to learn a part of American history. The only place we didn’t get to check out was the church interior. There was a line forming to go inside and I just wasn’t feeling up to the challenge.