It’s officially my birthday week! This Wednesday I am turning the big 3-0. Whoah. I guess I have to finally admit I’m a real grownup now right? (If the mortgage and two kids wasn’t convincing enough…)
If you follow along on The Joy Parade instagram, you may already know that my family is in the middle of a pretty major faith walk right now. This last summer God called our family to leave everything we have known and move to a whole new state, buy a home, and start a very different and much more intentional life. It’s been an amazing journey, one I plan to continue chronicling on the blog. Over the holidays there was a pretty significant twist in the story though, in which the company my husband works for let us know that due to financial constraints they were going to have to make some personnel and salary cutbacks – which is a fancy way of saying “We’re broke, so you’re fired.” So here we are in beautiful Oregon, having successfully left the chaos of the Silicon Valley behind, looking for the exact type of jobs that are most centrally located in… well, the Silicon Valley. God loves the humor in a good irony I think. In the mean time that leaves us with a monthly income of exactly $0 and a beautiful dance between fear and faith as we walk out our Joy Parade in the midst of a whole lotta crazy.
So all of this to say, it’s not the best time to be celebrating a milestone birthday. The original plan was to take our first ever vacation as a couple and return to Mexico, the scene of our honeymoon, and ring in the 30’s with a big old margarita in a swim-up bar. The new plan for turning 30 involves some well loved yoga pants, a cheap bottle of wine, and total control of the remote while I binge on some Netflix. It doesn’t mean a girl can’t indulge in a little fantasy window shopping though, and Pinterest makes this easier than ever in the digital age. (In fact I keep a running “Wishing and Swooning” board on Pinterest. It’s a great way for husbands to know what you have your eye on when a gift occasion comes around.) I have hope that someday our situation will be better, and a belated birthday gift will someday come my way. So I’ve assembled a fantasy wish list of some of the pretty little things that make my mama heart swoon and who knows, maybe someday down the line I’ll be able to pick something from my list and celebrate this new decade in style. A girl can dream right? <3
1 – Raskog Cart | Ikea | $29.99
Isn’t she a beauty? I have boxes of craft supplies and stationary items sitting in boxes and bags in my garage just waiting for some sort of official home in my office. And the color even matches my office perfectly! I’ve seen some amazing uses online for this cart – a bar cart, a craft caddy, a rolling art station for kids: it’s possibilities are endless.
2 – Stitch Fix Gift Certificates | Stitch Fix | $20 and up
I’m a regular Stitch Fix user and I have been beyond thrilled with most of the pieces my stylist has chosen for me. There have been times though that something gorgeous will come in my box and my referral points aren’t enough to pay for it and the budget just says no. It’s never fun sending goodies back when they are “keepers” in your eyes. Stitch Fix gift certificates make a great gift for any gal, whether she’s a regular subscriber or a first time user.
3 – Hunter Rain Boots | ShopBop | $148
Moving from California to Oregon brought one main difference – water falls from the SKY here you guys. Like free water just comes out of nowhere. It’s amazing. Needless to say I’m totally unprepared for this sort of thing. Would you believe I dont own a pair of real rain boots? I bought snow boots when we got here, and since they are waterproof I’ve been using those for now. But in terms of rainboots, Hunter is the gold standard. Aidan has a pair and they have held up to a couple years of all out little boy abuse, and are no worse for the wear. And these gorgeous glossy red ones would be the statement piece of any rainy day ensemble. TOO gorgeous.
4 – Gilded Portable Charger | Nasty Gal | $40.00
This gorgeous portable charge is the size of your average lipstick but contains enough kick to fully recharge an iPhone battery to 100% power. The best part of this particular charger though is that unlike a majority of its competitors, you don’t need to provide a cord. In fact, the cord it comes with is tiny and compact, and has three different plug types so you can charge just about any device you may own. It’s gorgeous AND practical – a total win.
5 -Tory Burch for FitBit Bracelet | ShopBop | $195.00
If this truly is a fantasy wish list, this item simply had to be included. Isn’t it stunning? Take any FitBit armband and convert it into a beautiful piece of statement jewelry, without effecting its functionality. I love the idea of making the athletic device less conspicuous and converting it into part of your ensemble. And it’s Tory Burch – need I say more?
6 – Leather Loop Key Fob | Henri Bendel | $38.00
I’ve been on the lookout for a chic and practical keychain with a sophisticated flair, and this one certainly fits the bill. I adore the classic chocolate and white signature strip of Henri Bendel, and it looks exceptionally beautiful on this leather key chain. Plus I would love the added practicality of being able to slip the loop around my wrist when running a quick errand that doesn’t require dragging my entire purse along.
7 – Madewell Transport Tote | ShopBop | $168
What better gift to celebrate coming into your 30’s than a quality handbag? I mean sure, I love a good deal from Target, but there is something to be said for owning a classic bag that will match almost everything and can last you well past your 30’s and beyond? I’ve been not so secretly swooning over this tote from Madewell for a long time. I’ve actually handled one of these beauties and the leather is simply heavenly. You can even get the bag monogrammed by Madewell for $10, for an extra chic touch.
8 – Cannon 6d with 24-105L | Amazon | $2,399
A full frame camera and an L series lens? Enough said. I love my little 7d and my starter lenses, but Im definitely dreaming of the day I can make the jump to a professional level DSLR. Can’t say it’ll be in the budget anytime soon, but having tested this set up out for myself I can say it’s absolutely worth the investment. If you’re thinking of getting a DSLR to capture your own authentic moments, this one is absolutely my top recommendation. It’s the most affordable of Canon’s full frame offerings, but certainly not lacking in function.
9 – Tortoise Royale Necklace | Charming Charlie | $15.00
I’m always a fan of a great statement necklace. It instantly takes a t-shirt and jeans to a whole new level of style and sophistication. And I have my eye on this affordable little beauty from Charming Charlie right now. Small price tag but BIG style points.
10- L’Eau de Chloe | Nordstrom | $70.00 for 1.7 oz, $90.00 for 3.4 oz
As much as I love my Body Shop coconut or grapefruit body sprays, they lack a certain sophistication that a beautiful bottle of high end fragrance brings. I used to own this fragrance year ago, and its absolutely enchanting: not too overpowering, fresh, bright, and perfect for Spring. A little spritz of a real fragrance completes any ensemble for a woman in her 30’s.
11 – Blogging Essentials Art Print | Jones Design Company | $24.00
I am a regular window shopper at the beautiful Jones Design Company website. So many beautiful pieces! This one would be absolutely on point for my office though, and is pretty perfect for me wouldn’t you say?
12 – Threshold Mirrored Accent Table with Drawer | Target | $79.99
My current bedside table? A cardboard moving box. Yeah… not exactly the chicest decor choice, but what can I say – the price was right! This glamorous little number from Target’s Threshold line would certainly be an upgrade though, and it matches the vision for our new master suite perfectly.
13 – Be Still Cotton Tote Bag | Kristin Schmucker | $28.00
I have been looking for a great cotton tote for some time now, and this one took my breath away. It would be perfect for throwing together a quick trip to the park, grabbing groceries, or taking the boys to the library. As an added bonus Kristin is a beautiful soul who runs her brand with character, so you can always feel great about the purchases made from her website.
(Disclaimer: some of the recommendations above contain affiliate links. This means if you click my links and purchase a recommended product, I may receive a commission from an affiliate. All opinions are entirely my own, and I have not been approached or compensated by any brands to be included in this article.)