Monthly Favorites: September Edition

Monthly Favorites: September Edition! – It’s basically second new year over here! We’re welcoming in the change in seasons with a few new faves. Here’s everything I love this month…

Emily from One Lovely Life

September is winding down, and it’s time for monthly favorites! This was my birthday month, and we did our best to do some good celebrating (I had this cake–yum!).

September always feels like a second new year with the change in season, school under way, and turning a year older. I set a big goal for myself (see my last fave this month!), and I’ve been updating my fall/winter capsule with a few great finds. Here are a few things I’m loving this month…

Monthly Favorite Things from One Lovely Life

1.The Perfect Family Picture Dress. 

It’s already time for us to start thinking about family pictures–eek! We scored a photo session with the incredible Lizzyography next month, and I’m SO EXCITED. She’s incredibly talented, and I decided that after a few years of casual clothes at our home (which I LOVE), I wanted a few more dressed up pictures this year.

After striking out at several more expensive places, it was SUPER exciting to find this perfect (AFFORDABLE!) dress in blush and cream. I can’t decide which I like more, but for under $21 each, I’ll probably keep both. (Sizes are going fast!)

2. Ne(x)t Level Jeans. 

American Eagle jeans have been my go-to since before I had kids. I love that they’re stretchy (without losing their shape) and fitted (without being constricting) and last a loooong time. I own several darker wash pairs, and just ordered a few pairs of these over Labor Day. They’re AWESOME and I’ve been wearing them nonstop for weeks.

Fit notes: I’m 5’2″ and order my usual size in the short (hits right at my ankle) and x-short lengths (hits above my ankle). 

3. A Cute, Cozy Sweatshirt

I got several questions about this sweatshirt after posting an IG story with it on a couple weeks ago. It’s SUPER soft and cozy, plus the little “pick-me-up” message makes me happy when I wear it. My Old Navy sweatshirts last FOREVER, so I’m excited to have this one for a few years!

Fit notes: You can size up for a more relaxed fit, or wear your regular size for a comfortable but semi-fitted shape.

4. Affordable Leopard Flats. 

I love all the cute leopard shoes I’ve seen this season, but really didn’t want to spend $100 on a pair. Surprise, surprise when I found THESE for under $25! I love that they’re a bit more subtle, and they go with ALL kinds of outfits, from school pick-up casual to date night out and more.

Fit notes: I order my regular size and they don’t slip and slide off my feet or pinch at the toes. I’ve found with slides or slip-ons, I like mine to fit exactly to the length of my foot, rather than having any extra room at the back or front. 

I’ve been wearing them most days each week for the last two months and they’re still in great shape! (Kinda like the super cute $35 Flats That Never Quit that I bought last year–they’re still in like-new condition!)


5. Cacao Nibs.

Cacao nibs are giving me life lately. They’re unsweetened, minimally processed raw cacao pieces that are SUPER high in antioxidants, and have fiber and some protein to boot! They do run on the bitter side if you eat them alone, but I’ve found when I sprinkle a few over my Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal, use them as an ingredient in trail mix, or add them as a little garnish on a smoothie, they’re PERFECT and give a chocolatey taste (and crunch!) without a bunch of sugar.

Have you tried them!?

6. Mari Andrew.

Mari Andrew has one of my favorite accounts on all of Instagram. She’s an artist who somehow manages to have a direct line to my heartstrings. Her Magical Things I’ve Seen in New York posts always leave me with a happy lump in my throat. (See some of the others here, and here.) A scroll through her feed always leaves me feeling seen, understood, and a little more human.

Her book is on my wishlist!

7. Boy Brow Gel

After mentioning the little brow flick pen I tried a couple months ago, several of you mentioned how much you LOVE this boy brow gel.

I’d been underwhelmed when I tried it before, but after so many of you suggested it, I decided to give it another go. Turns out–I’d gotten the wrong color before (blonde) and having the RIGHT color (brown) made all the difference!

I love that it’s a subtly colored brow gel that holds your brows in place throughout the day without making them stiff or causing flakes throughout the day. (You can also opt for the clear version which won’t add any color, just give you that shape you’re looking for!)

I still use it in addition to another filler (brow flick or a brow pen), but if you have thicker or micro bladed brows, this might be all you need for the day!

8. A Pretty Dutch Oven

I use my Dutch oven ALL the time–for baked beans in the summer to pumpkin chili in the fall to soups and stews in the winter and more. I recently picked up this Cast Iron Dutch Oven from Magnolia and LOVE the quality. It’s more affordable than other brands, and I love that it’s as functional as it is beautiful. It’s already been put to LOTS of use!

It also comes in an adorable mini size for serving or for making individual portions of pot pies, pizookies, and more! (I couldn’t resist!)

Emily from One Lovely Life

9. Grocery Pick-Up!

I’ve been doing grocery delivery from Instacart for almost two years now and LOVE it how convenient it is. Sprouts also recently launched curbside pick-up via the Instacart app at all Phoenix-area Sprouts locations and it’s super easy to use. (And perfect when I’m already out running errands)

You go to or the Instacart app, load your cart, then schedule a pick-up window. You can choose the same day, or a few days down the road–whatever works best for you! Then, just swing by the store and have all those goodies loaded into your car while you wait.

It’s a game changer!

For AZ friends: Use code EMILYPHX to save $20(!!!) on your first Sprouts grocery pick-up order of at least $35. (Works at all Phoenix-area locations) The code is good through the end of September, so it’s the perfect time to try! 

10. Free Language Lessons.

If you get my weekly newsletter, you might have seen that one of my big birthday goals this year was to start learning French. I took 5 years of Spanish in school and love the mechanics of learning a new language. (I understand a LOT but I’m still shy/self-conscious about speaking it.)

I’ve always wanted to learn French, and I decided that I might as well start learning! Since I don’t know how to make attending regular classes feasible with our current family schedule, I wanted something with flexible timing that wasn’t a gigantic financial commitment.

Enter: Duo Lingo! It’s a free app you can use to learn a huge variety of languages (even endangered languages like Navajo). There are options for young kids and options for grown-ups. It’s used in schools across the country, and I can see why! It’s fun and easy to use, and works for a wide variety of ages. They do a lot to make it highly rewarding and engaging and have lots of additional resources you can use to expand your lessons–from podcasts to stories and more.

(I considered several options for learning and you can see a comparison between Duo Lingo and Rosetta Stone here. There are pros and cons for each, but I’ve been really happy with Duo Lingo so far!)

Now, I just need to plan a trip to Paris in a few years!


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