Spring at Old Westbury Gardens

Old Westbury Gardens 9

This spring, I want to get out and explore all of the gems that are in my own backyard on Long Island. And that’s just what I did over the weekend on a beautiful Sunday when a friend suggested visiting Old Westbury Gardens.

I’m not sure how it is that I have lived on Long Island this long and never visited this site. These majestic grounds are a must-see should you find yourself in Old Westbury in Nassau County, New York (about 45 minutes east of New York City).

For my history aficionados who may be interested in the backstory, the mansion was completed in 1906 by George A. Crawley for John S. Phipps and his family. The impressive mansion sits on 200 lush acres that include a swimming pool, ponds, lakes, and various gardens that contain an array of floral specimen.

I was in awe of the various colors I encountered while strolling through one of the gardens. Everything was so vibrant and stood out against the deep blue sky…well, you get the picture. If not, just take a look at the photos below to get a better idea of this tranquil setting.

Old Westbury Gardens 8

Old Westbury Gardens 5

Old Westbury Gardens 10

Old Westbury Gardens 3

Old Westbury Gardens 11

Old Westbury Gardens 1

Old Westbury Gardens 4

Old Westbury Gardens 7

Old Westbury Gardens 15

If you find yourself heading to Old Westbury Gardens in the near future, be sure to check the website to see what’s in bloom during your visit. And if you have time, schedule a tour so you can learn more about this amazing place!

Thoughts on the Weekend

Ah, another weekend is upon us. Like the end of every week, I can’t wait until Friday at 5 pm. There is something about having two days where I don’t have to set an alarm, make my lunch, and rush out the door that excites me. If you are like me and are always running 15 minutes late in the morning, you need to check out this article about the seven habits of punctual women (I’ve only adopted two of them, so I have some work to do).

For me, this weekend is all about getting back into shape (we’ll see how my back feels about that!). I plan to return to kickboxing for the first time in almost a month. After that, I will probably be unable to do much of anything…except relax.

Here’s hoping you have a restful weekend!


{Rise and Shine!}


{More signs of spring}

Can't Adult Today

{Target, you know me so well}


{A perfect flower}

Sweets, Shopping, and Snoozing

I’m still in a food coma as I sit down to write this post, but I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones. Yesterday left me feeling incredibly thankful and grateful. I’m so honored to have this space on the Internet that you all come to and read what I have to say. I’ve shared a lot about my struggles on this site, and while they have been challenging, I am grateful for them because they have shown me a strength that I never knew I had. So, thanks to all of you for your continued support over the years. Your sweet comments make blogging a truly rewarding experience.

I’m looking forward to sleeping in (which I rarely get to do these days) on this long weekend and getting back to my weekly kickboxing routine. Something about indulging in a seven-layer cake on Thanksgiving (combined with all of the birthday sweets this month), makes working out seem like a good idea.

Of course, don’t forget to hit up your favorite retailers today for some steals and deals. But I have a feeling I didn’t need to remind you about that. Happy shopping!

Anthropologie Earrings

{Birthday earrings from Anthropologie}

Bright Blooms

{Bright Blooms}

Roast Coffee and Tea

{Trying out Roast Coffee and Tea}

Cute Signs

{Love these cute signs}

Allergic to Mornings

{Couldn’t resist buying this super soft sweatshirt at Target}

Throwback Thursday

I’m not sure where the time has gone this week. One day it was Monday and now here we are…so close to the weekend. Why is it that once the summer rolls around the days seem to blend together? I’m excited to share a special post with you tomorrow (be sure to check back then). But in the meantime, here are some photos from the week!

Flowers from Trader Joe's

{Lots of flowers at Trader Joe’s}



Connetquot River

{Relaxing at my favorite spot along the Connetquot River}

Lunch time blooms

{Lunch time blooms courtesy of Starbucks}

Sweet 'n' Savory Creperie

{Crêpes for dinner from Sweet ‘n’ Savory}

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Five Things I’m Loving Right Now

Happy Monday, friends! It seems like we were cheers’ing the weekend a mere five minutes ago, doesn’t it? And now, here we are — back to our Monday routines. In the interest of keeping the weekend going a few minutes longer, I’d thought I’d share some things I’m loving at the moment.

OPI Alpine Snow

1. White nail polish: I talked about some of my favorite summer nail polish colors last week, but I finally purchased a white shade from OPI’s line and have been rocking it ever since. While my grandmother may not understand my fondness for the color, Alpine Snow is giving my coral crush a run for its money this season.

Fresh flowers from Trader Joe's

2. Fresh flowers: I always love going to Trader Joe’s and admiring their blooms. They have such pretty flowers. And while I’m not too good about keeping them alive (hence I rarely buy fresh flowers), it’s nice to take in their color and scents while I do my shopping in the store.

Floral sundress from Old Navy

3. Floral sundresses: You may remember this dress from a post I did last year shortly after buying it at Old Navy. Well, this beauty made its official debut at lunch this past Friday. Don’t you just love how well it looks with one of my favorite Snapchat filters?


4. Sangria: Ever since I was in Portugal in 2011, Sangria has been my drink of choice. Nothing is as refreshing in the summer as a nice cold glass of white sangria with lots of fruit!


5. Summer days down at the farm: It has been many years since I’ve called myself an avid equestrian, but lately I’ve been enjoying stopping at the barn and spending an afternoon in the company of equines. This past weekend, after taking my beloved Tim for a walk, I made friends with this guy above who was hoping I had a treat for him!

What are some things you’re loving right now?

Finally Friday

TGIF! From getting a new stove delivered that couldn’t be hooked up properly to learning the fate of my beloved Dowling College, this has been one heck of a week. I know I often talk about catching up on rest and enjoying some relaxation on the weekends, but I could sure use a lot of both over the next 48 hours. Here’s hoping this weekend brings nice weather, pool time, and a calmer mental state.


{Hello, Friday!}

Beach Time

{Beach Day}

Pink Blooms

{Pink Blooms}

Pool Time

{Pool Time!}

Dowling College

{Farewell, Dowling College}

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Relaxing and Recapping

We got lucky with a few rather warm days in May recently. Of course, I’ve taken full advantage of the nice weather, debuted my white jeans (as if I needed an excuse), and sipped on cool iced coffees. If the weather keeps up like this, it will feel like summer before we know it!

Here’s a round-up of my favorite recent snaps:


{Hello, beauties!}

Starbucks Iced Coffee

{My summer go-to from Starbucks}


{Not a bad sunset to see on your drive home}

Jimmy Choo Glasses

{How fab are these Jimmy Choo glasses?}

Chocolate Chip Pancakes at IHOP

{Started off the week with chocolate chip pancakes from IHOP}

Follow me on Instagram and Snapchat (username: livinginsteil) to keep up with all of my musings!

Spring Savings from Shopbop


Happy Friday, friends! I don’t know about you, but I am ready for the weekend. And what better way to kick it off than with some shopping? By now, you’re probably well aware that Shopbop is having a huge sale. You can score great deals using the code BIGEVENT16. But hurry, the sale ends on Saturday, March 5th at 11:59 pm PT. So what are you waiting for? Let’s fill up those online carts! I’m swooning over these slip on sneakers from Marc Jacobs, this adorable romper from Clover Canyon, and this bucket bag from Elizabeth and James.

Hope you all have a great weekend!