Thursday, September 29, 2011

Maybe this can be used to describe me, too?

The weather forecast for this upcoming weekend in Atlanta reads 'sunny and pleasant' for two straight days.

Sunny and pleasant, my friends. Sunny and pleasant.

I am beyond excited by this, since we're having Brigid's birthday party on Saturday, and we're heading to a fundraising festival at Oakland Cemetery in downtown Atlanta on Sunday.* It's going to be an awesome weekend to be outside, and since that's probably just what I need after feeling cooped up in the office this week, the timing couldn't be better.

Now, if only I could fast forward through Thursday and Friday... :)

*If you ever make it to Atlanta, call me up and I'll take you to the Oakland Cemetery. It may sound like a creepy place to spend the day, but it is gorgeous. There's a field dedicated to Civil War Soldiers, a corner reserved strictly for important Atlanta mayors, and countless amazing mausoleums. Margaret Mitchell and Bobby Jones are both buried there, and it's maybe one of the most peaceful places in the city. I highly recommend stopping by if you ever get the chance.

Blouse: Banana Republic
Skirt: H&M
Belt: J Crew
Shoes: Nine West
Bracelets: Mango Tree

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Can we make Wednesday the new Friday?

My Google Reader is veering dangerously close to a ridiculously high number of unread posts again, since I'm about a week behind on all of the blogs that I follow, but I haven't had any free time at work to catch-up (I usually try to read some on my lunch break, but that break has been about 15 minutes between meetings here lately.) and my evenings have been full of paper spiders (Don't even ask...I'm in the process of going beyond overboard on a TWO-YEAR OLD'S birthday party.Yes, I know she won't remember, but I can't help myself.) and foam pumpkins.

All of that to say that I miss reading all of your posts, but I haven't resigned myself to the 'mark all as read' button, yet, so when you get 18 comments from me in one day, you'll know why...

Happy Wednesday!

Sweater: Banana Republic (outlet)
Skirt: Target
Shoes: Nine West
Belt: Land's End

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

What might have been...

Usually, when I'm packing for a trip, no matter how short that trip might be, I pack by outfit. And to ensure that every outfit works in reality the way that I think it will work in my head, I have to try on each option as I go. And then, if I think I most likely won't be taking pictures wherever I'm heading, I do that ahead of time, too, because an outfit doesn't count if it's not blogged, you know?

(And my husband wonders why it takes me so darn long to pack for anything...)

This is one of those packed outfits, put together and photographed, that I never actually wore (yeah, I also tend to overpack, which has caused a problem or two over the years...). And now that summer is officially over, I most likely won't be wearing it this year, and, well...sad.

But there's always next year, right?

Blouse: Target
Shorts: Gap (outlet)
Shoes: Target
Bracelet: Charlotte Russe

Monday, September 26, 2011

Busy Days

October hasn't even started, yet, and I'm already exhausted by it. Part of it is work-related and out of my control. But the other part of it is completely my fault because October means fall, and fall means a nonstop schedule of weekend activities and the start of the holiday season.

(Why yes, I do consider Brigid's birthday the official start of the holiday season...I like to decorate and throw parties and any excuse is a good excuse in my book...).

So, anyway, I guess what I'm trying to say is that when you start to notice the bags under my eyes, or the fact that I haven't had time for a haircut since the beginning of August, or if I seem to forget I've been wearing the same shirt for a week, a gentle reminder would be much appreciated, ok?


And's Inspiration Monday over at Two Birds!

The inspiration (which made me think nothing but thoughts of I have GOT to get my hands on a sparkly jacket!):

And the outfit (which is seriously lacking in sparkle, obviously...):

Tank: WHBM
Jacket: Kenneth Cole (outlet)
Jeans: MICHAEL Michael Kors
Shoes: Nine West

Thursday, September 22, 2011


I have a policy around here: Any time Brigid and I match, she has to be included in my daily picture.

Side Note #1 - Actually, that policy is: Any time Brigid will stand to have her picture taken with me, she has to be included in my daily picture, but whatever.

Also, I may or may not be planning to steal that flower for my own use at some point in the future...

Side Note #2 - I was told by Steve that Brigid didn't actually wear the Elmo t-shirt all day, he just put it on her when he got home as her 'potty shirt'. 

So...there's that.

Side Note #3 - The scarves were Brigid's own addition to her outfit...

I'm so proud!

Dress: Gap
Cardigan: Gap (outlet)
Shoes: Nine West

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Nothing like a little monochromatic neutrality to offset a gray week...

Wait, that's not how it works, is it?

At least I added the flower...that counts as trying, right?

(I think it keeps throwing me off when I look out the window, see gray skies and rain, and expect it to be nice and cool, temperature-wise. Then I walk out, and it's actually kind of a drizzly sauna instead. It's throwing me off of my game, people!!)

Sweater: Gap
Skirt: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Kenneth Cole (outlet)
Necklace: Old Navy

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


So, last week, the Missoni for Target craziness happened. And while there was definitely some cute stuff in the collection that I wanted to pick up, I did not want to brave the stores at the crack of dawn to get any of it. So I waited until my lunch break to make my visit, and basically EVERYTHING was gone, except for the shoes, and most of the sleepwear.

Luckily, it was a pair of shoes that I was after, so it all worked out in my favor

(Oh, also, there was a dress that I wanted, and I didn't think that was going to happen, but I managed to be standing at the rack (possibly on purpose) as a woman (that I had maybe been slightly cart stalking around the store) returned one in my size. So, well done me, I guess?)

Sweater: J Crew
Skirt: Calvin Klein (from Macy's)
Shoes: Target
Bracelet: Kohl's

Monday, September 19, 2011


In honor of my beloved alma mater's first college football win of the season (don't even get me started on the state of things so far...we should be 3-0 right now, instead of 1-2...that's all I'm saying...), I thought we'd go with a little game day attire today.

(Steve and I took Brigid to a small festival in our area on Saturday morning. I wore this, Steve wore a Notre Dame jersey, and Brigid wore a cheerleading outfit. All morning, we had people directing pro-ND sentiments our way, which I thought was fun. Steve, on the other hand, mentioned that he was tired of acknowledging the cheers every 10 minutes. 

Then maybe we shouldn't dress like such homers the next time we are in public, dear...) 

Win or lose, I love my Blue and Gold...

(And here is where I admit that we did, in fact, name our cat Rudy. After the movie. It's only fitting that he make an appearance in the pictures, huh?)

T-Shirt: ND Bookstore
Cardigan: Target
Shorts: Ann Taylor (outlet)
Shoes: Cole Haan

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I've got nothing...

Today is one of those days where I am at a complete loss for words. I've racked my brain, trying to come up with something to say about my day, my outfit, or my life in general, and there's just nothing there.

I mean, I'm trying to get back into running, now that the weather in Georgia doesn't make me want to cry every time I leave the house, and I'm into week two of the Couch to 5K program (for my second time around, because I've lost the ability to run for longer than two minutes at a time since this past spring), and my tailbone has been a little sore since the last run. But really, how is that at all interesting, right?

Although, it apparently doesn't stop me from talking about it, so at least there's that...

(Today's blogging tip, from me to you: When in doubt, ramble aimlessly, and hope nobody notices. Also, try to time your rambling with an outfit that consists of more than a black skirt and gray sweater, if you want maximum distraction power. Oops...)

(Oh, and I am taking recommendations for new running shoes (I'm pretty sure that's where the tailbone issue is coming from), so if you have any ideas/preferences, let me hear them!)
Enjoy your Thursday!

Tank Top: Target
Sweater: New York & Co
Skirt: Calvin Klein
Shoes: Kenneth Cole

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Someone needs a haircut...

The problem with my neighborhood is that everybody is too friendly. And everybody has kids, so everybody is always outside, and you never know when you're going to be expected to carry on a conversation with some random person that you can only identify by what flag they have hanging from their front porch or what their landscaping looks like.

And while this isn't really a terrible problem to have, it does mean that I feel guilty taking Brigid out to play without doing my hair first.

Luckily, I am immune to guilt these days...

Tank Top: Target
Sweater: New York & Co
Shorts: Ann Taylor
Shoes: Cole Haan

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The blues...

It's time to play along with Everybody, Everywear again...

Everybody, Everywear | Colored Pants

I have to admit, when I heard that this month's challenge was colored pants, I was a little nervous. I can wear a brightly colored skirt with the best of them. But pants, for some reason, always cause me problems. So, I started off slow...

(I promise, these aren't just regular blue jeans. The color is much brighter than it appears in some of these pictures...but it's starting to get to the point where it's dark when I leave the house and it's dark when I'm done for the day, so this was the best I could do with the lighting that I had...

Also, I am not ready for perpetual darkness, again!)

Next up? I think I'll try pink. Or red. Or maybe purple? Decisions, decisions...

Jeans: TJ Maxx
Sweater: Gap
Shoes: Kenneth Cole (outlet)
Necklace: Calvin Klein (outlet)

Also, it's Tuesday, which means that I am up over at Style Lush today, window shoping for home accessories. Stop by and say hi!

Monday, September 12, 2011


It's Inspiration Monday again, over at Two Birds, and this week's inspiration is the always stylish Rachel Bilson:

I have to say, I absolutely adore this look. And I really enjoyed putting together something similar, myself...I just felt a little more classy and put-together than I normally do in a pair of jeans. Until I realized that one of the dogs had peed on the floor and Brigid had just rubbed syrup all over her hair, that is.

What can I say? I lead a glamorous life...

Blouse: H&M
Jeans: Michael Kors
Shoes: Steve Madden

Thursday, September 8, 2011

excuses, excuses...

So, don't share this with anyone, because I don't want my secret to get out, but I am an inherently lazy person. I would like nothing better than to spend the day lying on the couch, watching tv, reading a book, and eating ice cream or cereal. The only reason I don't do this (other than the fact that Brigid would never stand for it) (and the fact that I need money to keep myself equipped with said couch, tv, and cereal, hence the dragging myself into the office most days of the week) is because I am also an inherently guilty person.

You would be amazed at how well guilt works on me most of the time.

But back to that lazy thing? Yeah, I still don't have any outfit pictures to post here. Because our camera? That I normally keep upstairs in my closet for a quick photo shoot before I head off to work?

It's been downstairs in the office ever since I unpacked from our trip. And every evening, I forget to take it upstairs with me. And every morning, I am too lazy to go down and get it for the picture taking that is necessary for posting outfits here.

And rinse, and repeat.

In place of this, I will show you the shoes that I almost bought at TJ Maxx yesterday, but didn't, because I have self control. And no money. But mostly...self control.
(photo credit: Also, these aren't the exact shoes that I almost bought, because these aren't being sold at TJ Maxx, but they're close. The ones I wanted had the same pattern/shape, but the stacked sole was covered in the print and the heel was black. So pretty...but so not under the catagory of 'necessary purchase', sadly)

(Also, thank you guys for the encouragement yesterday. You really are the nicest bunch of people, I swear!)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


I don't know if it's the cool and rainy weather we've had the last few days, or the returning from a great family vacation to the reality that I don't really get to spend as much time with my kid as I want, or the surprise house repairs that currently have us trying to reconfigure our budget, or even other small, but unexpected changes that I don't really want to get into here, but something has just, I me this week. Maybe I'm being too sensitive. Maybe I'm being too hormonal or too whiny or too self-absorbed. I don't know.

But I do know that I don't like feeling this way.

And I also know there has to be something I can do to change this feeling.

I just don't know what that is, yet.

But I'm working on it...

And in the meantime? Look at the pretty picture!

(And I'll try to be back to my normal, cheerful self tomorrow...)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Easing back into things...

Today is Trendy Tots Tuesday over at a little bit of this, and since I still haven't managed to get back into the habit of photographing my own outfits, yet, I am instead going to treat you all to a couple of really terrible iPhone shots of a really adorably pig-tailed toddler...

Dress: Gymboree
Shoes: Target
Fabulous Photo Skills: All me

You know that you're adorable when even terrible lighting can't completely disguise the cuteness, I've decided...

Also, you'd think that coming back from vacation just in time for a long weekend, I'd have done something productive with my free time, like working through the good pictures from vacation on my real camera, so I'd have something quality to share today. But you'd be wrong. It happens, I guess...

What did I do instead of being productive this weekend? Well, if you must know, I spent my time pulling out and putting up Halloween decorations. It started as a transition to FALL decorations only, but then Brigid really enjoyed all of the Halloween pumpkins I have, and then I got caught up looking at decorations on Pinterest, and then I went shopping because I just couldn't contain myself anymore and I needed to decorate RIGHT AT THAT EXACT MOMENT!!!
And now I have to keep people out of my house for at least two more weeks, so I don't get judged for having my Halloween decorations up AT LEAST a month too early.

The first step to recovery is acknowledging you have a problem, right?

Oh, and if you're interested, Pinterest struck again, and I'm discussing my desire to redecorate my bathtub over at Style Lush today...

Monday, September 5, 2011

And I'm back...

Vacation is over, laundry has been done, and I am slowly getting my head around the fact that I have to go back to work tomorrow for the first time in over a week.

I am not looking forward to that part of things, at all.

While I was gone, I took a week off from all things blog related (with the small exception of Twitter, that is, because I'd be lost without my Twitter news...), and although I missed keeping up with all of the day-to-day excitement of my blog friends (my reader feed is full, but I will be doing my best to catch up this week, as I can...), it was kind of nice to take a break. I'd like to thank Cee, Claire, Kimmie, and Melissa again for being awesome enough to agree to do guest posts last week, because it was nice to know I was leaving my little corner of the Internet in good hands.

Thanks for doing such a fantastic job, ladies!

On a slightly related note, outfit posts might be kind of sparse this week, because apparently, spending time on the beach has made me forget, not only how to put an outfit together, but also how to do my hair and make-up. So I'll try to spare you the photographic evidence of my re-entrance into normal society, and instead, I'll share a picture of this:

Why, yes, that is a picture of an empty gourd painted to look like Elvis playing the guitar that I spent $4 on in a thrift store in Port St. Joe, Florida. And it may be my greatest find, ever.

Happy Labor Day to all!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Guest Post: Blue Paper Lanterns

While I am off on vacation this week, I asked a couple of my favorite bloggers from around the country to share how where they live might affect what they wear. Mostly because I want to know, and this was the easiest way to get them to tell me...

Today, it's Kimmie from the Seattle area, who is often accompanied by one of the cutest little guys I've ever seen in her daily photos. Seriously, the kid definitely inherited his mom's fantastic style! Make sure you check her out over at Blue Paper Lanterns!


Hi This Life Redefined readers! I'm Kimmie from Blue Paper Lanterns.

Tara asked me to share some "Northwest style" with you.. and you may look at these picture and scratch your head. It's probably not the most stylish outfit you've seen, but it's casual and comfortable and very fitting for the Pacific Northwest's laid back culture.

Most people will stereotype us PNW folk to be very green and eco-conscious, which translates into our clothes. Lots of REI, Birkenstocks and zip-off cargo pants. We're not the most fashion-forward bunch, but there's still lots of know, like organic cotton vs. non-organic cotton. Haha, just kidding. We dress just like you...except maybe warmer. We had the hottest day of the summer over the weekend when we finally hit 80 degrees, but not before going back down to the 60s and rain on Monday. Shorts are really a waste of money here.

Top: Target
Jeans: J. Brand
Belt: Banana Republic
Necklace: Kenneth Cole via Macy's
Shoes: Target

Thank you so much for sharing, Kimmie! And this is where I admit to you all that I used to live in the land of flannel, too, but my flannel was less Pacific Northwest, and more farmer chic. Minus the chic part of things.
I'm pretty sure I've burned any photographic evidence of that time in my life, but if I come across any pictures that survived, I may consider sharing them with you somewhere down the road.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Guest Post: To Brighten My Day

While I am off on vacation this week, I asked a couple of my favorite bloggers from around the country to share how where they live might affect what they wear. Mostly because I want to know, and this was the easiest way to get them to tell me...

Today, it's Cee from Northern Virginia, who may just be the most creative layerer (I know that's not a word, but there really is not better way to describe her!) I've ever seen. I would pay her to come to Atlanta to teach me how to do what she does. Check her out over at To Brighten My Day.


Hello readers of This life, redefined...! I'm Cee and I blog at to brighten my day. While Tara is on vacation, I'll be stepping in today to talk about my personal style.

I'm an East Coast girl through and through. I've lived in the DC metro area practically my entire life, with a few years spent away at a southern VA school. My surrounding environment definitely played the biggest role in how my style has evolved. I'm a trend lemming and can pinpoint my style influences down to three memories:

1) I grew up in your average middle-class suburbia where mainstream trends ruled. I first began to notice "fashion" during my middle school years. Do you remember those popular old-school adidas jackets from the 90s with the big logo on the back? I threw jackets like that on top of everything, from jeans to skirts. These were definitely the years that I started dressing sporty-casual. Or, looking back at pictures, sporty-messy, lol.

2) In high school, Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle, and the likes became the "it" places to shop at. These stores were my first introduction to preppy clothing, but by today's standards, they're probably just considered run-of-the-mill. I didn't leave behind my sporty-messy style, but instead of sticking to one style a day, I'd try various combinations. Sometimes it worked, but most often times it didn't.

3) I was in for a shocker when I went away to college. What I thought was preppy back home was tame compared to what I saw while living in the South: girls in sundresses and pearls toting Vera Bradleys; guys in blazers, ties, shorts, and flip flops. The kicker is, this was somewhat normal everyday, but a must at football games. I can't say I immediately embraced this full-on preppy style (though I did blend in fairly well at sporting events my first year), but over time, the familiarity certainly grew on me.

Nowadays, I find myself gravitating towards a mixture of preppy, casual, and even the occasional feminine item. I typically start off with one piece to center my outfit around. This could be pink shoes, statement necklace, bright top, etc. I'm not very good at mixing patterns or colors, so most times you'll find me wearing something white or black, which goes with everything. Then I would start adding layers, either keeping the outfit top-heavy while showing some leg, or keeping the top simple and covering up the bottom. I try to play with proportions whenever possible. Through blogging, I've come to appreciate the difference accessories can make an outfit. Most days you'll find me finishing an outfit with a trusty scarf, necklaces, rings, or a combination of them all (sometimes I just don't know when enough is enough).

A few of my favorite outfits and my thought process while getting dressed:

(1) The navy blue equestrian scarf was the statement piece of this outfit. I kept the rest simple and casual with a white tee, bright skirt, and flip flops, a more grown-up version of my favorite uniform of tee and sweats. Of the three outfits featured, this is the one that I'm most comfortable in and probably best defines "me."

(2) I started with the neon pink tee, then paired it with the obligatory white item, a pencil skirt. Ballet flats or flip flips didn't feel right with this type of skirt, so I added a pair of nude heels. Even with the bright pink top, the top half remained a bit boring. I briefly considered my navy blue equestrian scarf (from outfit 1), but decided feminine pieces looked better with a girly skirt, so I loaded up on necklaces instead.

(3) I love getting more wears out of items by mixing casual with business (my closet and wallet both thank me!) This chambray top can easily be dressed down, but by pairing it with a work-appropriate skirt and dressy heels, it's now suitable for my business-casual work environment as well. My natural shoe choice for this outfit would've been simple black pumps. But I felt with the already darker (and somewhat masculine) palette, hot pink shoes are a bright and unexpected contrast.

A big thanks to Tara for letting me share and thank you for reading!


Thanks for sharing, Cee! I'd never even thought about dressing up for a football game until I moved down south, but you'd fit right in at the Georgia football games I've been to since I moved...