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Spring Break in Arizona

Having graduated college two years ago, I REALLY miss having a spring break! I think I completely took spring break for granted and now I could really use a week to unwind, throw on some cute outfits, and just relax with a fruity cocktail in my hand. Wasn’t college the best?!

So while I can’t just ditch work for a week in March every year and fly to Cabo (I can dream though right…), I can say adios to California for a weekend. This year, I decided to hit the road for a quick 48 hour trip to Arizona. My god, it was the best 48 hours of my life. Pool, sun, tanning, and cold drinks. What more could a girl ask for? Cute outfits? Yup…those were present too.

My friends and I stayed at the beautiful Graduate Tempe in Arizona, right across the street from Arizona State University. This hotel completely brought me back to my glory college days. The hotel was a mix of boho-chic, eclectic, vintage, and retro vibes. It was the perfect desert retreat. I love staying at unique hotels that have a little quirk to them and the Graduate completely exceeded my expectations.

The hotel interiors sport classic 1970’s reproductions including nightstands inspired by retro stereo speakers and lush comfy easy chairs. We had our own personal balcony with views of the ASU campus, perfect for watching the AZ sunset with a cold beer in my hand. Every single detail in the room was so cute and quirky, I loved it!

The best part of the hotel was that we really didn’t even need to leave. The Graduate had the most relaxing pool with a poolside cantina and a life size jenga set. We ate breakfast at the onsite Normal Diner, sipping mimosas in this chic diner. For dinner, we headed to Tapacubo, the Mexican eatery, serving up the best margaritas and guacamole ever! I’m always in the mood for good Mexican food and this place hit the spot.

After dinner, we took a short walk to Mill Street which is filled with the cutest shops, restaurants, and bars. We stayed out all night sipping frozen cocktails and listening to country music. It was the best weekend ever and I’m already looking at my calendar wondering when I can get back to the Graduate in Tempe! I’ll definitely be back this summer!

Do you have any spring break plans? Even if you do a little staycation and stay local, getting out of the house and relaxing is the best feeling during spring!

Thanks so much for reading!! I want to give a huge THANK YOU to Graduate Tempe for helping me have the best mini spring break vacation ever!

Stay chic on spring break my friends!
XX-Samantha

P.S. Graduate hotels are a string of boutique hotels in all the most dynamic college towns in America. Each hotel celebrates the youthful optimism of school days and captures the spirit of each community in a bright way. I absolutely love that and now I kind of want to stay at every single one of them! Who’s with me?!

Outfit Details

Dress: here & here | Necklace | Earrings | Shoes | Bag

Galentine’s Day with Style Collective

Happy Valentine’s Day! VDay is honestly one of my favorite holidays. I know it’s cheesy & cliche & whatever you want to call it, but any day dedicated to celebrating the ones I love  is certainly okay with me! I try to express my love on a daily basis, but I love to go all out for the important people in my life on the 14th. Why not right?!

This past weekend, I got the opportunity to celebrate Galentine’s Day with 20 pretty ladies at the Style Collective meet up. It was such a FUN girls day filled with laughter, great food, pretty views, & connections I’ll have forever (I sound SO cheesy right now. DON’T JUDGE!). The event was held at The Sea Level Bar located at the beautiful Shade Hotel Redondo Beach. This hotel is beyond gorgeous & on my way home from the event, I called up TJ & was like we are going on a staycation at this hotel ASAP. He was so down! We nibbled at yummy appetizers, sipped on champagne, and chowed down the most delicious macaroons from ‘Lette Macarons for dessert. I had like five, once again…don’t judge!

After eating up every last bit, my Galentine’s and I enjoyed talking & getting to know each other in one of the restaurant’s outdoor lounge areas overlooking the marina. It was a super cold & windy day (& we all wore dresses!! Silly us), but the staff went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable from starting a fire to surrounding us with 10+ heating lamps. After some much needed girl talk, in true fashion blogger spirit, it was time for a photo shoot. You can’t get a group of 20 gorgeous bloggers together & NOT take some pictures! We posed & smiled with the most beautiful balloons from Balloon Celebrations. The 6 foot heart balloon? I about died. If I could have taken it without anyone noticing, you best believe I would have!

Throughout the day I met some amazing ladies that I had connected with through Instagram prior to the event. It was so fun to finally meet them in person & make some real connections. The Style Collective is an amazing group of women & a wonderful community of support. I know at any time I can reach out to this group & be flooded with so much love & inspiration. I couldn’t ask for a better group of girls to be my Galentine’s this year.

Special shout out to Jessica from Petite Style Script & Catherine from Catherine Grace O for making this event happen & to our amazing photographer, Mike (find him on insta @goirishphotog) who snapped all these beautiful photos. Thanks to Dermalogica‘Lette MacaronsCore HydrationBloomingdale’s & Guilty Soles for providing the best goodies in our giftbags. One last BIG thank you to Shade Hotel Redondo Beach for providing the most beautiful setting for this outing. Like I said, I’ll be back soon!

I want to give all my love to the ladies who attended this event. If you want to follow some pretty amazing ladies, check them out for sure!

The Gardens Casino

Last weekend I had the opportunity to visit the newly renovated Gardens Casino in Hawaiin Gardens and as soon as I stepped through the door, I was in HEAVEN. You all already know how much I love a good casino (hello Vegas!) and as sad as it is to admit, I actually find gambling fun! Don’t judge! So when The Gardens Casino invited me to experience their Sunday brunch and learn how to play something new, I was like ummm….YESSS!

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First of all, their brunch was amazing! If you’re going to bring me unlimited mimosas and tell me to eat all I want waffles and omelettes…I promise I will sit there all day. TJ wasn’t complaining much either since there were about a million TVs everywhere and it was football Sunday. Second of all, learning how to play a new game…that’s right up my gambling alley. I normally play slots or video blackjack/craps because there is zero pressure. I’m always super nervous to play at a real table so I often end up standing behind TJ watching…or being his luck charm so I say. But learning how to play Pai Gow one on one with the dealer was awesome! I learned so much and was able to ask all the dumb questions I could never ask when playing for real money. AND I was actually winning…too bad they weren’t real chips! But now I have the confidence to go play with real money and hopefully win enough money to buy that new pair of booties I’ve been eying!

It’s safe to say I’ll definitely be back to The Gardens Casino for more brunch and games! Especially since their service is top notch. Everyone was so nice and helpful. Any question or request I had, they were more than happy to accommodate with a huge smile on their face. I didn’t want to leave and it was only when TJ was like, “Samantha, we’ve been here hours…” that I was like I guess we should leave, but I WILL be back soon!

If you’re in the area, definitely check out this gorgeous casino! You will have such an amazing time, guaranteed.

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Outfit Details

Camo Jacket: Nordstrom Rack (such a steal!) | SQUAD jumpsuit: Forever 21, sold out. Love this one & this one | Jeans: American Eagle | Boots: Sam Edelman, sold out. Similar here | Bag: Zac Zac Posen | Choker: Forever 21 | Sunnies: Basik Lux

Happy Birthday To Me

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Today is my birthday and I’m turning 23! Even though my #taylorswiftyear is over and no one likes you when you’re 23…I’m ready to embrace this new age with open arms. Some people think as you get older, birthdays don’t really matter. I am not one of those people. I absolutely love birthdays and I think they are so special and should be treated as such. It is your day to celebrate you and I truly believe it is one of the most important days of the year. I love when my birthday comes around because it is a time to for me to reflect on the past year: where I’ve been, where I am, and where I want to be in the next year. It is also just a time to celebrate me and come on now…who doesn’t love that?!

This past weekend, TJ and I went on a one day mini vacation to one of my favorite places in the world: Palm Springs. It turned out to be the best day. We started with outlet shopping, lunch at the Parker, an afternoon by the pool, dinner at Flemings, and a movie night. I don’t know how we managed to pack so much into one day, but we did and believe me, we were exhausted! The next morning consisted of walking around the grounds of our beautiful hotel and snapping some pictures in this gorgeous Azazie dress. It was the perfect way to celebrate my birthday.

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To celebrate my birthday with you all, I want to share a little more personal side of me! I’m sharing 23 things that you may not know about me! Thanks so much for celebrating with me and following along my crazy life!

  1. I’m an only child. Yes, at some point I did want siblings, but I learned to embrace it and now I’m like what siblings?!
  2. I was in a sorority in college. So it didn’t really matter that I was an only child, I found so many sisters that I will forever call my best friends.
  3. I met my boyfriend at Starbucks. Yes, it is SO cliche, but it’s true and 4 years later, I fall more and more in love everyday.
  4. My favorite number is 19. I was born on the 19th and it has remained my favorite number for my entire life. Throughout sports growing up to choosing numbers on the lotto. It is lucky for me.
  5. I don’t drink coffee. I cannot stand the taste! I do love Starbucks though, I will forever get a passion tea sweetened in the summer and a hot chocolate in the winter.

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6. My favorite restaurant in the world is Mon Ami Gabi in Las Vegas. If you have the chance, go! Sit outside right on the strip and people watch while eating the best crepes I can find in America.

7. I’ve never left Southern California. I was born in Southern California, went to college in Southern California, and now live in Southern California. I think I am destined to be here my whole life.

8. I’m such a girly girl. Everything about me screams girly girl, but I am so adventurous. I love camping, I want to go sky diving, and I wouldn’t mind going cage diving with sharks.

9. I love the heat and hate the cold. My dream temperature everyday would be 100 degrees. I absolutely love the hot weather and would never make it in a city that has an actual winter (although I do love the winter outfits).

10. I am obsessed with Sex & The City. I know…who isn’t right?! But my obsession is real. I can probably quote every line from the first movie.

img_0043 img_001711. I love calendars. I have about 4 on my desk at work alone.

12. My dream man is Calvin Harris. Shhhh…don’t tell TJ!

13. I’m a perfectionist. In all aspects of my life. Something isn’t complete to me until it is nearly perfect. I know nothing and no one will ever be perfect, but I will always strive for close to perfection.

14. I studied Psychology in college. I planned on being a Marriage and Family Therapist, but had a senior year crisis and ended up in HR. I absolutely love it and plan to get my masters in Business one day.

15. I want to travel the world. I know everyone wants to travel the world. But I have this desire to see and experience everything I can in this short life we are given. Nothing is more important to me.

16.  My favorite food is Mexican food. I could literally eat nothing else for my whole entire life.

img_0041 img_003617. I love country music. A lot of people make fun of me for it, but I don’t care. The lyrics are so fun and full of life and the melodies are so catchy. What’s not to love?!

18. I am obsessed with baseball. While I do like other sports, baseball will always have my heart. Go Angels!

19. I love playing craps at a casino. And I’m pretty lucky. Ever since I’ve turned 21, I’ve been addicted to casinos (this could be a good or a bad thing). I’ve never lost and I can be playing craps for hours.

20. My favorite animal is a sea otter. I’m obsessed.

21. I am a huge concert lover. I go to so many concerts a year and I will never stop. There is something so magical about being with other people who know all the words and singing along to your favorite song. Gives me chills every time.

22. My favorite Disney movie is Tangled. The scene with lanterns never fails to make cry. My dream is to view something so magical like that in real life.

23.  I secretly want to move to a different city. While I love California, I think it would be so thrilling to experience living a new city. Not forever, but at least for a little bit of my life.

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Thanks so much for reading and learning more about me! Hope you all have fabulous weeks!

Stay chic!
XX-Samantha

Oregon Recap

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There is nothing better than a quick, spontaneous trip in my opinion! A few weeks ago I decided to book a plane ticket and fly to Oregon to visit my family. I’m literally never this spontaneous. I normally plan everything out so far in advance so this was super new and exciting for me (and it was the first time I have ever flown alone!) I’m so excited to be writing this Oregon recap because Oregon has a very special place in my heart.

My grandparents live in a beautiful little city called West Linn about 13 miles outside of Portland. Growing up, I visited almost every summer but as I got older and my summers got busier, I visited less and less. Last year, I talked about my trip in a post here, celebrating my grandparent’s 50th wedding anniversary. It was such a magical night in the middle of the woods on this gorgeous piece of land. I knew I had to visit again soon! And now I want to keep going back all the time!

This visit, I knew I wanted to do things in Oregon I’ve never done. I didn’t do much research since it was a last minute trip and I thought I’ll kind of go with the flow and see what my family wants to do. The first day of my trip we went wine tasting. I’ve never been wine tasting before (SO SAD…I know!) and I heard the Willamette Valley was the perfect place in Oregon to go. They are known for their Pinot Noir wines and although I don’t often drink reds, I bought 3 bottles because of how good all the wines were. The views were stunning and the day was perfect. I am now officially a wine tasting lover and I can’t wait to go again! I mean, sitting around in beautiful vineyards, sipping some vino all day. There is no better life than that!

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The next day we decided to drive to the Oregon coast. I’ve been there before when I was younger but I have the WORST memory like ever so I was excited to experience it again. There is nothing like the Oregon coast. Growing up with SoCal beaches, I think every beach is like that. But Oregon beaches are surrounded with beautiful trees and gorgeous rock formations and hills. I could’ve sat all day and listened to the waves crash (possibly with a glass of wine in my hand?! Of course!). The best part about the beach…the CUTEST little beach town ever. Cannon Beach. It was everything you can imagine in a beach town. Cute shops, cute restaurants, cute street. Just all around CUTE. We had the most amazing brunch at this little restaurant that looked and felt like we were eating in someone’s house, called Lazy Susan! I loved it! Afterwards, we strolled the shops where I found the most gorgeous vintage vase in an antique shop. I’m not one for souvenirs when I travel, but this piece will remind me of Oregon every time I look at it. That’s my kind of memory!

The final day of my trip my Grandma and I had a girls day in Portland, shopping down the cutest little street: NW 23rd Avenue. I’ve been shopping on many different streets including my favorite retro row: Hawthorne. But this is by far my favorite. It’s a little tree lined street with unique boutiques and consignment shops. All the little boutiques are in houses and I thought that was just adorable! I spent a little too much I must admit, but I couldn’t pass up the rare finds! I love shopping when I travel, especially at local boutiques, because I think there is something so special about finding unique pieces only available in that area. I cherish these pieces even more and will always remember where I bought them.

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It was a short and quick trip and although we didn’t do the typical Oregon things, I had an amazing time! It was one of my favorite trips to Oregon ever and I can’t wait to go back already.

Thanks so much for reading & following along my Oregon adventure! Anyone going on a trip anytime soon?! I’d love to hear details!

Stay chic!
XX-Samantha

Lip Beauty Routine

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I am so excited to share something new & exciting with you today on Chic Serendipity! So far, I’ve shared mostly fashion & style with a lot of life adventures & some travel. Today, I’m bringing you Chic Serendipity’s first beauty post. Disclaimer before I dive in…I am in no way a beauty expert. I feel way more comfortable in the realm of fashion and that’s what comes naturally to me. Makeup, hair, skin, all that jazz…well there is just so much to learn! There are so many products out there and a lot of what will work best for you depends on so many different individual, personal factors. I’m constantly talking to the women at Sephora, my hair stylist, other bloggers, even my coworkers and more beauty savvy friends about what I should try. And of course I’d love taking suggestions from you! I’m learning that a great outfit can only be enhanced and finished with great hair and pretty makeup.

When I was approached by Cheeky Physique to try out their new Sublime Lips, Manuka Honey Lip Plumper, I was so onboard! Lately, I’ve been experimenting much more with lip glosses and lip sticks. Throughout high school and college, I didn’t care to put anything on my lips unless it was chapstick. I probably owned one red lip stick and that was it. When I started working in the real world, I started playing around with lip colors. A year later, I’m hooked. I can’t stop trying new brands and new shades!

I’ve also learned a thing or too about lip care. I used to think you could throw on a lip shade in two seconds and be out the door. I was totally wrong! I actually have pretty dry lips ad wearing lip stick all day, almost everyday completely drys out my lips. There are many things that I’ve learned over the last couple of months that have really helped save my lips and make the color I put on everyday look so much prettier! Read on to read my complete lip routine!

  • Exfoliate! The first thing I do and what I think is the most important step is to exfoliate my lips. If I don’t, I’ll often put on a lip stick (especially a matte kind) and my lips will be gross with dead skin or just be super dry. Seriously gross. So I use Hanalei Sugar Lip Scrub. This stuff is like gold. I put some on using a q-tip, rub it around for a few seconds, and dab it off with a tissue. This instantly makes my lips so smooth and it will last all day.

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  • Keep that moisture! After the lip scrub, I need to keep my lips smooth and moisturized. Next I put on a light coat of chapstick. I normally use Eos. Just a light coat is all you need and I even use a tissue to dab off any excess.
  • Plump it up. Next I use Cheeky Physique’s Sublime Lips. This magic bottle is a great foundation for any lip stick I put on or I can even wear it alone for a pretty shine. This hydrating product will take your pout to the next level with its luscious blend of Manuka honey and advanced lip plumping ingredients. This feel-good formula will not only act as a hydrating primer on your lips, but will also give your lips a little natural plump. Best of all, there’s none of that annoying stinging and irritation you get from other lip plumpers.

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  • Lip liner. Now I don’t know if you are an expert at putting on lip stick, but I haven’t quite got there yet. Lip liner completely helps guide you and it even gives your lips a little extra pout. Who wouldn’t want that?!
  • Apply you fav color. Finish off with your favorite lip stick or lip gloss and I promise your lips will stay smooth, plump, and fresh all day long. My favorite right now are the Kylie Jenner lip kits. I know, I know…don’t laugh. But seriously these lip kits are everything! Whatever she does, she is doing it real good. My favorite are the matte lip kits because they literally last all day and are so pretty! My favorite colors are Koko & 22! Serious must haves if you can score these. I know they are super hard to get so I thank my good friend, Sabrina for constantly scoring them for me. She is an angel.

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Do you have a specific lip routine you use to make your lip color last all day & look amazing?! I’d love to hear the products you love. Thanks so much for reading and I hope I helped you perfect your lip color just a little bit. Keep those lips colorful & chic!

XX-Samantha

Summer Must Haves

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Happy Wednesday! The long weekend is in sight and it can’t come soon enough! For me, Memorial Day Weekend marks the official start of summer. If you haven’t already, pull out all your summer clothes. Pack away the spring neutrals and pastels and bring on the bright, vibrant colors. It’s time!

I’m excited to share with you my Must Have list for summer. There are so many fun toys and cute knick knacks that you must have to get in the spirit of summer. Whether you’re headed to the beach or hanging by the pool, I’ve got you covered. Planning a party? Yup, I’ve got what you need!

If you’re hanging by the pool, you need a fun pool float. There are a million cute floats around but my favorites are the watermelon slice, the ice cream cone, and the popsicle (perfect for Memorial Day & Fourth of July!). If you’re headed to the beach, grab this super cute fringe straw bag. I’m obssesed. Don’t forget your towel! Round towels are totally on trend and Cotton On has a ton of cute round towels in fun prints including this watermelon print one. Planning a party or BBQ at home? Grab these fun pineapple lights and serve festive drinks in this pineapple sipper (only $12!). I have this and I can’t tell you how many compliments I’ve got! Finish off the party with a round of Bocce Ball or Badminton.

Maybe you’re not headed anywhere until the end of the summer. It’s still fun to pretend we are on vacation right. Grab this super cute Kate Spade phone case to remind you it’s summer and to have a little fun. Who’s with me?!

How are you spending your Memorial Day Weekend?! Any fun plans?? I’d love to hear!

Thanks so much for checking out my summer favorites. Stay summer chic!

XX-Samantha

 

Friday Favorites

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My new favorite pattern: Gingham. My 15 fav pieces here.

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Fabulous new purses & the first peonies of the season

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Light blue embroidered summer tanks because I can’t stop buying blue

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Learning how to protect your skin with SUMMERSKIN. Read all about it here.

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Finding the perfect pair of sunnies with the help of DITTO (Use code CHICSERENDIPITY for your 1st month free)

The weeks are just flying by. I know I’ve been saying this a lot, but I can’t believe it is already the middle of May. Two weeks from tomorrow I will be flying out with my family to Cabo! I’m so excited but I feel like I have so much to prepare. That’s why me and my mama are headed out tomorrow morning for some last minute shopping to finalize all our outfits! I have so many cute outfits that I’ve been saving just for this trip, I can hardly wait! If you have any recommendations for Cabo I would love to hear! I haven’t been since I was in High School so I’m ready to explore a whole new side of Cabo I’ve never seen before.

I’m also headed out to a Flea Market in LA on Sunday with some of my coworkers. I’m trying to redo my house a little just to spice it up for summer. I’m hoping to find some cute little knick-knacks to compliment my fun Home Goods  finds. I’ve already found the cutest Pineapple pillows, the cutest pineapple artwork, and some pineapple candles. I’m obviously obssesed with pineapples and I’m not mad about it. Can’t wait to finish up so I can share with you all here! What are you up to this weekend?! Any fun plans before Memorial Day? Let’s chat!

Thanks so much for reading & don’t forget to check out the round of posts from this week-including a fun Memorial Day Wish List that you won’t want to miss!

Stay weekend chic my friends!

XX-Samantha

Antique Market

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A couple of weekends ago I decided I wanted to go to a Vintage/Antique Market. This is something completely different for me and out of my element because I am in no way a vintage or antique girl. I usually am attracted to current trends for clothing and modern pieces for homes. I have never been to a flea market and I am probably the worse negotiator in the world. So an antique market is probably the last place you would find me.

But I decided I wanted to go to the Trading Post 1908 Vintage/Antique Market. The items and vendors seemed to have that shabby chic vibe I like. I grabbed my mom, woke up early, and drove down to Angel Stadium in Anaheim to pick up some things! Moving into a new apartment recently, I was looking for some pieces to fill my living room.

Let me tell you…I am definitely an antique convert! I could’ve spent hours wandering the market, dreaming of all the ways I would style the beautiful pieces. I am no way a home decor expert, but I am an HGTV lover, especially the show Fixer Upper! Have you seen it?! Joanna and Chip Gaines are the cutest couple in history and she has the most beautiful shabby-chic style. She is the queen of flea markets and may have inspired me a bit…seriously considering moving to Waco, Texas one day! I ended up buying a blanket ladder, a Paris-inspired vintage luggage piece, and a pretty silver vase. All three items make a nook of my apartment look beautiful…it is my favorite part of my living space!

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If any of you are like me and are a bit nervous about going to your first flea or antique market…I would definitely say go for it! You don’t necessarily have to haggle with people about prices, most of them are super fair! They are experts in their field and love talking about the history behind the items they found or how they made their unique items! Don’t be shy! Living in Long Beach, I’m so excited to go to December’s Long Beach Flea Market! More antique shabby-chic items for my house please!!

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great weekend!

P.S. I may also use my blanket ladder for dresses from time to time (don’t tell my boyfriend…). This dress is a Thanksgiving must from Berkley’s Boutique and under $50! Stay tuned for my three different Thanksgiving outfit ideas coming to Chic Serendipity early next week…including one featuring this dress!

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