July 31, 2013

Turks and Caicos


I've been away on vacation for the past week in the "beautiful by nature" Turks and Caicos Islands. I've never seen water so blue and clear, I've had an absolutely amazing time here with my family. My brother loves it too because the drinking age here is 18. I bought a necklace today made from larimar, which is a blue stone found only in the Dominican Republic. It's not something I would normally wear, but it was too beautiful to pass up. I will post pictures when I have my laptop with me again and can upload photos. The sun seems to be coming out again. There was a big storm this morning, so we decided to do some shopping and go to a small French bakery. I got a yummy apple tart and espresso. Yesterday we went on a boat tour to Iguana Island and snorkeled above a reef. My brother and I were able to dive beneath the surface but my ears started to hurt because I didn't realize how far and how quickly down I was swimming with my flippers on! I thought I would be completely terrified but my Pisces nature must have soothed my initial fears. That or the rum punch. 



July 19, 2013

July 18, 2013

Brunette to Blonde Pt. 3: Throwback Thursday

When I was in 6th grade my best friend Sarah and I went to Lake Erie for a fun day at the beach. We bought some sun-in at the store and spritz it on our hair and waited for the sun to work its magic as we listened to mix CDs that probably had a combination of Linkin' Park, JLo, and John Mayer on our Walkman's and gossiped on a beach blanket. Sarah has naturally light, beautiful dirty blonde hair with amazing highlights, so when she used the sun-in, her hair lightened and looked wonderful. Mine, however, "wasn't working AT ALL" on my dark brown hair, so I basically spritz the shit out of my head and ended up with hair the color of a trumpet. For some reason though, it wasn't a big deal to me and I just went about my every day with hair that looked like a brass instrument and I eventually had three and then seven inch roots until my hair just grew out naturally, so yeah I'd say my mom hated me. Kidding, there wasn't really anything we could do about it. I guess 6th grade was a different time where my hair ignorance really was bliss.

I haven't bleached my hair yet. I know, I promise I'll do it but I'm waiting to abhor my locks before making another change. In the meantime, here is me on my first day of 6th grade when I had my brassy, sun-in locks (and my sister on her first day of kindergarden).



Morals of this story: sun-in doesn't work well with brown hair and mix CDs are the greatest.


July 17, 2013

Loose Spaghetti Straps

All from asos.com, top center from ShopAkira.com

I love going braless in the summer and these tanks are perfect for doing so. Be free, breasts!



July 16, 2013

Green Smoothie Recipe


I'm new to the kale scene and wanted to try something new with the enormous amount I just got from the grocery store! So I made some smoothie variations and this one was the tastiest! Enjoy!



July 15, 2013

Brunette to Blonde Pt. 2: How Going Blonde is Teaching Me Patience

Short story: I'm naturally a dark brunette and want to go platinum blonde. I went to the salon for highlights and ended up hating them then freaked out and bought my own bleach, but ended up sort of kind of liking my hair after a week, but it's not something I would have done again. Bleach to come, but not yet.

This is what my hair looks like 5 days after getting my highlights. I didn't use a flash, just light from my window. I'm trying to be as honest with these posts as possible. When watching how-to videos, it was always nice to be aware when something didn't work out.



Read on for the whole story.



If there is anyone less patient, please let me know. I have the most in-demand, I need it/want it now attitude out of anyone I know. So when I decided that I wanted to be blonde, and platinum blonde, I wanted it at the snap of my fingers. Alas, I was born with dark brown hair, so going from my natural color to a Monroe blonde in one day wasn't going to happen. It takes time. I learned that...eventually.

So, I went to the salon. I told my stylist I wanted all-over blonde highlights and showed her photos of some bloggers from Sweden.

"I'm going for something drastic! I just broke up with my boyfriend and I'm going blonde." But like I should have expected, she looked at me with a sympathetic look and told me the bad news: a color like that, from the color I was, takes time. Likes WEEKS time. MONTHS time.

Hoping for the best, I just told her to go for it. I just wanted a change, I was ready, just give me super blonde highlights and we'll see how it turns out. I'd never gotten highlights before so when she was done, I thought I looked alright. I got in my car and sent a few snap chats to friends with the caption, "someone's blonde!" before I drove out of the parking lot.

When I got home, I started messing with my hair and pulled it back and realized that the  roots were still totally brown. She had pulled the hair taught over the foil so I assumed that wasn't happening. There was actually A LOT of brown. I felt like I had just jumped out of 2001 because my hair was a lot brown and a lot blonde. There was so much contrast that I was definitely having a major identity crisis with all the streaks. I called my hairdresser and asked what was up and if there was any way she could add more blonde. Unfortunately she told me that it would turn orange if she'd done an all-over color (just like she'd explained to me earlier, but I was too busy being in denial).

My mother assured me my hair looked fine and my dad's face said, "I'm trying so hard to be neutral right now but I don't know how you want me to feel so I don't know what to do!!" Eventually I called my cousin, who used to have bleached, blonde hair, and she told me to chill out and this was a normal part of the process.

It's been about a week now since my appointment, and I must say I think my hair looks a lot better. I'm not sure if I've just gotten used to it or my hair is coming out of its "freshly done" stage, but I imagine it's probably both. Even though I went to the salon, I think it's kind of reminiscent of a hairstyle that I could have done myself. So I go with the mindset that I "did it on purpose" and that's seemed to help.

During my time of initial despair, I watched like 50 youtube videos about bleaching my own hair and then went to Sally Beauty Supply and purchased what I hope are the proper products. I will do a post on bleaching my hair myself when I decide I'm not comfortable with the color I am anymore. I did spend a lot of money on these highlights after all, so I might as well keep them if I don't hate them. I'm glad I at least took my time in making the to-bleach or not-to-bleach decision, or else I might not have realized that my hair isn't all THAT bad, it's just not what I wanted.











July 14, 2013

Boots, dog, and a thrifted midi dress

Dancing with my dog Roxy and listening to Billie Holiday Pandora while drinking wine. Perfect for any fine evening. I always forget about these H&M boots, but I love them. My dress has been my go-to for this summer. I just wear it with a belt and whatever shoes. I got it at a thrift store called New to You in Athens, Ohio for $4! I would go there almost every weekend and buy 30 cent books for collages or jeans for cutoffs. It's an Athens gem!




July 13, 2013

Dark lipstick in summer


Lipstick is L'Oreal Infallible in Java Jolt


I smile and laugh a lot but I do love a mysterious, brooding pout. Even in the summer. Gotta fit your Daria attitude in somewhere.




July 12, 2013

Packing for a short-term NYC move

I made the big move from suburbia to the big NYC. I've been there as a visitor maybe seven times, most with my family, but this time, it was a one-way ticket that I purchased. And without a discount because I waited too long. No surprise, packing for this move was (exaggeration alert) the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. I was moving from post-college graduation at-home with the parents to the city, so at least I could leave a large amount of my belongings in the garage. My sister was more than happy to look after the clothes and shoes I didn't bring with me. But my stay is from June until the beginning of November and a lot of events are up in the air. Will I actually get a job when I'm there? I tell myself, "I should pack dresses for my non-existent interviews and the job I don't have yet." I'm optimistic about finding one.

So there I am in my bedroom with my allotted one bag of luggage that is supposed to last me five months (or more!) of unpredictable weather, jobs, concerts, adventures, and rough patches. You know, life. I was prepared to take the Amtrak from Pittsburgh and arrive at Penn Station. I'd been-there-done-that less than a month ago when I went to visit Sam in Greenpoint, but this time I had more than just my backpack. It's a simple trip, but migrating from train to subway stairs is something to consider when you have luggage. A taxi cab from the station to my apartment was nearing $50 according to my estimates and I'd much rather spend that money on food. In this case, I kept it to one bag (28 x 22 x 14in) and my beloved backpack. I figured if there was anything I ended up really needing once I got there, I could have my parents ship it to me. Luckily, my boyfriend was already at the place and could tell me if anything important was missing and if I could bring it or if it was something we could just go purchase or find on Craigslist.

I made a list (duh) of important things to take with me. Clothes/bras/toothbrush are the obvious list items, but don't forget random items like extra copies of your resume and important interview items like a portfolio, your journal, books you haven't read yet, sunglasses, and headphones.

Here are some tricks that I used when I made my move from Pittsburgh to NYC. These worked really well for me personally, but if you have other tips leave a comment! Discuss!



1. If you've never worn it, don't pack it.
With the exception of a dress I bought for possible interviews, I said no to anything that I thought might look cute with that one outfit that I might wear but probably won't.

2. Use plastic bags for shampoo/conditioner/goopy hair gunk.
It happened once and I never let it happen again. Don't let that bottle of expensive hair product explode all over your favorite clothing and shoes. Put them in plastic ziploc bags and seal em. Better yet, just buy it when you get there if you can afford to.

3. Pack shoes for purposes.
Think you'll be going to the park? Bring some sandals. You'll be walking a ton. Bring comfortable shoes. I'm not talking tube socks and New Balances from your dad. You know what shoes work for you and what don't. If you can't ever wear them for a trip to Target without blisters, then I wouldn't bring them with such limited space. Leave that space for your favorite boots and professional shoes. Sandals are fine in my opinion, but your feet do get a nasty city grime on them within about five minutes. Leave your shoes far from the bedroom and kitchen if you can. Gross.

4. Think about what you can buy once you're there.
Yes everything is more expensive in the city, but some things are worth just leaving behind and purchasing when you get there. For instance I have a lot of picture frames and small decorations I would have loved to bring with me, but they just weren't necessary. I'm hoping to find some great pieces at flea markets and start fresh from my old decor that's worn out and very college.

5. Work with an air mattress.
For about a week, I was constantly on the hunt for a super cheap mattress and figuring out how I'd get it to the apartment once I actually found one. For the most part, queens didn't run cheap. Or as cheap as I had hoped. Sam mentioned getting an air mattress and I'd never felt like I missed the obvious more in my life. I think we'll be getting a mattress topper. *Edit* After sleeping on the air mattress for just two days, my neck hurt so back I couldn't even look down at my feet. I suggest getting a mattress topper ASAP or maybe going with a futon.

6. Check out events in the area before you make your move.
Local events got me really hyped about moving to New York (as if I wasn't already). I do love spending time with my family, so leaving them is always a bit of a bummer. But I saw what cool things were happening in the city and I didn't want to miss out! Even though it's always touristy, The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a great place to start because it's free! I walked from East Harlem through Central Park to the Met (on a 90 degree day, I looked negative 100% fabulous) but it was beautiful.

7. Don't try too hard to act like a native.
This is something I always have to tell myself. I never want to be "that person" reading a map or walking back the same direction I just came five times, but sometimes (a ton of times) it happens. And whatever! There are thousands of people in the city and not all of them are staring at you when you make a mistake. Most of them probably remember a time when it happened to them and are willing to help you out if you ask. Or even if you just look a little lost in the subway, I've always found that most people will try to help you.

8. Take advantage of cool apps.
There are a lot of great apps that will help you big time when you're trying to make it in the city. I'm a huge fan of Embark, which is like Google maps, but for the subway. I also love Yelp and Foursquare. There are so many reviews and tips and most of them are trustworthy enough to give places a try. If it's terrible, write a review to help others avoid the same mistake.


Who knows... maybe I'll find out that this entire list is terrible once I'm here longer, but for now it has suited me well. I'm still waiting to realize what I forgot and then face palm myself when I find out. There are, too, always items that you wish you would have brought along after all. I'll let you know when I find out what those are. For now, I'm hoping my minimal experience so far in the city can help someone who is even more clueless than I am still.


Make a list to shop when you get there but buy Blue Moon instead!



**Edit: I made this post shortly after moving to New York, but have since moved back after I split with the boyfriend and yadda yadda yadda. But! That doesn't mean the information isn't still useful to anyone else lucky enough to make the move, so good luck! I'll be back there in a few months once I have my shit together.


July 10, 2013

Brunette to Blonde Pt. 1: Internal and External Journey

I recently graduated from college. I recently moved to NYC. I recently moved back from NYC. I recently decided it was time for a change. (You know, quarter life crisis stuff.)

So I decided to dye my naturally dark brown hair platinum blonde.

I know it's just hair. Seriously. But this is a huge change for me. I'm a 22 year-old stuck in a self-preserved post-graduation limbo and everything has a bigger meaning for me. Everything seems to have a message lately. So my hair will be a symbol of change of thought and physical appearance.

I find that I'm most comfortable at an easy-going pace. I don't have to shower every day and I like to wear my boots with the same pair of jeans every day. But I also really love getting dressed up. Slicking that lipstick on my lips and making sure it's just right and blotting like 100 times because the color was unevenly distributed. I love when my eyeliner is never thick enough and my cat-eye is dramatic. What I have set in my mind so often for some reason, however, is that I have to choose one. I can't not care and not shower one day and take three hours to get ready the next. It's like I'm trying to find an impossible mission statement for my entire being. Brown hair is easy-going. I never style it, as I prefer to wear it natural, and it's been the same most of my life minus some bangs a few times and a shoulder length cut I got sophomore year of college– and those were huge changes. I like easy-going. I like high maintenance. A lot of people don't like high maintenance and I think that maybe I'm afraid if I appear as such, people will judge me for it. Because I care what people think. There I said it. It's an anxiety thing. For me, I think blonde hair will (initially at least) require more styling. It will make me look like I got ready. It will push me beyond the constant need to have that "Oh, I just threw this on!" look, because usually that's what happened. It will make me feel uncomfortable and that, I hope, will make me more comfortable with myself in the end.

So, let's begin this journey. I semi-pinky promise not to chicken out because this is a process and I really hope my hair doesn't fall out.

***SOOO...CUE THE EMOTIONAL, MY-LIFE-IS-CHANGING-BUT-NOT REALLY-MUSIC***

and I gotta get the hell out of here before I change my mind.



Here is a Bukowski poem called "Roll the dice" to make this more dramatic:

if you’re going to try, go all the
way.
otherwise, don’t even start.
if you’re going to try, go all the
way.
this could mean losing girlfriends,
wives, relatives, jobs and
maybe your mind.
go all the way.
it could mean not eating for 3 or 4 days.
it could mean freezing on a
park bench.
it could mean jail,
it could mean derision,
mockery,
isolation.
isolation is the gift,
all the others are a test of your
endurance, of
how much you really want to
do it.
and you’ll do it
despite rejection and the worst odds
and it will be better than
anything else
you can imagine.
if you’re going to try,
go all the way.
there is no other feeling like
that.
you will be alone with the gods
and the nights will flame with
fire.
do it, do it, do it.
do it.
all the way
all the way.
you will ride life straight to
perfect laughter, its
the only good fight
there is.


July 5, 2013

Liebster Award

I normally don't take part in these things because they seem fun and then they take FOREVER. But I figured what the hell. It took forever.

THE RULES
·                You must share 11 things about yourself.
·                Answer the 11 questions that your tagger has given you.
·                Choose 11 other blogs for the nomination.
·                Leave 11 questions for your nominees.

·                Lastly, thank the person that nominated you and link back to their blog.

11 Things About Me



1. My favorite pair of shoes is a pair I meant to return.
2. I just graduated from college. (holy shit.)
3. I used to have a nose ring and sometimes I miss it
4. I tried to be a vegetarian to lose weight but just ended up eating a ton of cheese to fill the burger void
5. I like to write poetry but hate what I write three days later
6. I don’t really care for whiskey, but I wish I did
7. My passport photo is the most embarrassing picture of me ever
8. I love when characters in movies wear wigs
9. I’m terrible at baking, but I’m not giving up. Because I really like cookies.
10. I’m currently reading The Awakening (again), Siddhartha, and Jane Eyre
11. I wish I had $$ to fund my wanderlust.

11 Questions from Sophie:
1. What is your favorite band?
I’m going to give a shout out to some local love on this one and say Wheels. It’s a little-known band from Yellowsprings, OH. They’re all young and have some amazing songs. I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of Fleet Foxes or Wolf Parade either.

2. If you had a time machine, where is the first place that you would go?
It’s hard not to toy with regrets with questions like this. But I won’t. I think I'd pop on into the future a few years and see what my life is like. Hopefully I'd get some peace of mind from seeing that everything will be ok.

3. Do you have any posters on your bedroom walls? What are they of?
Back home I have your standard Holly Golightly and Marilyn Monroe posters. When I was at school I had a printed cat on my wall because we couldn’t have real pets. His name changed daily. I also had some posters I purchased in Paris and a Die Antword photo I’d ripped out of an old Nylon.

4. Who are your heroes?
 Meatball heroes. Yeah.

5. Who's your favourite writer/author?
It changes almost daily. But I do love Bukowski and Didion.

6. What's your favourite magazine?
I majored in magazine journalism, so choosing just one is a little hard to say. I suppose Vogue. Keep it classic.

7. Do you like Rookiemag? Do you read it regularly? Do you have a favourite Rookie post?
I do love Rookie, I think it’s a wonderful, real outlet for girls. They talk about real shit that’s not just relationships and makeup, but they don’t leave that out because we like that shit, too. I first found out about Tavi when she modeled for her sister’s blog (Fashbot or something). I was super into the Teen Vogue fashion forum. Tavi must have been like 12 and I was 16 but I remember thinking how damn cool she was, so I followed Style Rookie. That was that.

8. Which film makes you laugh the most?
This is tough because I find myself laughing at things that aren’t supposed to be funny. I guess Step Brothers or Airplane? I feel like I'm forgetting a different movie.

9. What's the best concert you have ever been to?
I went to a Matt and Kim concert in Columbus one time. I ended up meeting my now-best friend Helen who I lived with for two years. She’s so wonderful and made my college experience fantastic. I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in crime. The concert was fun, but everything that happened that weekend is what made it so great. Close seconds: Girl Talk when my friends dressed up in a shark costume and beard or N*SYNC (twice!).

10. If you could be in any TV series what series would it be and why?
I would love to be in Mad Men because of the clothes. But I’d have to be some badass superwoman, go-getter like Peggy.

11. (Copied from Mabel)Put the first picture you come across here when you refresh your tumblr or blog timeline.


My sister and I at a wedding.



11 Questions for YOU!
1. Tea or coffee?
2. What is the last news article/book/essay you read?
3. What is the last song you listened to?
4. If you could speak another language fluently what would it be?
5. Necklaces or rings?
6. Tumblr or Twitter or Facebook?
7. What’s the best outfit you’ve ever worn?
8. What is your horoscope sign?
9. How did you meet your best friend?
10. What’s your favorite summer food/treat/drink?
11. If you could claim authorship for any poem, what would it be and why?

I tag these 11 blogs:

Thanks, Sophie!