~ I forgot my sunglasses ~

Wearing //
Loft softened chambray shirt, similar here and here on sale
Zara kitten heels, similar
Stella & Dot necklace and bracelet
(Don't forget to use Noelle Engel as your hostess ;)
Beauty //

This time of year is always bittersweet for me. I used to love Christmas because it was really the only chance I had to see my extended family. My mother would go all out, working like a mad woman to ensure the perfect decorations, lights, and presents. But after my parents got divorced when I was eighteen, family stopped coming around. We isolated ourselves from people, and I spent most holidays going to friends' houses who were gracious enough to let me join and be a part of their families. Now that I have my in-laws, it's wonderful to be included in their traditions. I'm extremely grateful, but there's still this little ache in my heart because I haven't spent a single Christmas with my own family since I was a teenager. With the work that I do with foster children, I see how this otherwise happy time affects them as well. They long to feel normal. They don't care about gifts like a lot of well-adjusted kids do. All they want is to be reunited with their parents, and unfortunately, that's not a possibility for obvious, heartbreaking reasons.

I don't mean to write such a sad post, especially when it's attached to an outfit I wore but I know I'm not alone in this. Plenty of people experience the holiday blues, more than we probably imagine. In the hustle and bustle of putting together fun looks to wear to parties, gift guides filled with pretty things to buy, and traditions to carry out, I just hope we can be aware that not everyone thinks this is the most wonderful time of the year. For some, it really isn't. I hope for most of you reading this though, you are having a great end to 2015. I am trying my best :)


  1. I appreciate you sharing this personal post, Noelle, and I am one of those (like you) who thinks this is not really the most wonderful time of year. I try to just be pleasant and do my usual thing on the blog and in real life without dramatically protesting and being a grinch, but it gets tiring hearing people insist that it's THE BEST when I feel otherwise, more so this year than ever due to the tragedy my family has suffered this year. It is really nice to know I'm not alone. You do look beautiful in these pictures and I love your classic outfit, but mostly I love your honesty and openness in this post. (And in real life.)
    Gina | On the Daily Express

  2. Im glad to be part of tour family Nelly, and well always have eachother this time of year, xoxo

  3. I agree Holidays are not always great if anything you can feel quite lonely during that time. Actually this is my least favorite time of the year, so that's why I make sure I'm super busy through all of it. Thank you for being open and honest. Of course I love this classy look and I really love that you don't have sunnies today, I can see your pretty face better.



Thank you for commenting! I read each and every one, and do my best to answer questions or return the favor on your blog.