Friday, March 30, 2012

Friday Round-Up

Twenty-four hours from now, I will be back on the beach. It's only for a few short days, but I take what I can get around here. And I am very, very lucky that I live close enough to the ocean that Brigid and I can tag along on my parents' spring break trip, without having to commit to the full week that they're taking. And I'm also very lucky that my parents agreed to head to Florida via Georgia this time, instead of the Alabama line they usually take, so that my sister can entertain Brigid spend some quality time with me in the car between Atlanta and and the coast.

Where I am a little less lucky is the five hour trip home on Tuesday, when it will be just me, a two-year old, and a whole lot of nothing to do, but I'm choosing not to think about that right now...

(But, if you have a free second on Tuesday, please, please, PLEASE send a couple of unicorn and sunshine thoughts my way, mkay?)


And now, a few things I found while trying to catch up on my Google Reader list, again:

I love this idea on overcoming the post-vacation blues, because hoooooo buddy does the week after vacation get me down.

This is just all kinds of beautiful writing, right here.

I find these bags kind of cool and kind of freaky, all at the same time. And I kind of think I want one because of it.

This makes me want to go out, buy ten Oxford shirts, and wear nothing but for the next three months.


Have a great weekend, friends!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Months That Were: January through March

Well look at that...March has (almost) come and gone and we are now (almost) officially a quarter of the way through the year. You know that saying, 'the days are long, but the years are short...'?

Yeah, that pretty much sums it all up.

Anyway, because I'm a finance person, I live my life primarily around quarter close, so the end of March seemed as good a time as any to revisit my 2012 list, just to see how things are going...


1) Clean/reorganize my closet. - If anything, it's actually gotten worse.

2) Institute a monthly date night with Steve. - So far, so good. We've done a movie night in, after Brigid went to bed (no cell phones allowed, which is tough for us...), a mid-afternoon brewery date for his birthday, and a basketball night out, which was probably my favorite of the three.
Although, the brewery date did include dinner (at 4PM...we know how to roll with the early birds, over here...) at Flip Burger, home of the s'more (with nutella) and Krispy Kreme doughnut milkshakes...and that's tough to top, right there.

3) Make sure one of those monthly dates is a really, really nice dinner somewhere. - I'm still waiting.

4) Put together a Christmas/Advent activity calendar for Brigid. - Like I would ever actually take the time to plan this far ahead...

5) Do one Pinterest-found craft or implement one Pinterest-inspired design idea each month. - Eh, not so good. I haven't been spending as much time as I like on Pinterest lately. I really need to work on that. My time won't waste itself, after all...

6) Call my college friends at least once a month. - Do text messages count?

No. No, they do not. Must. Get. Better.

7) Facetime with my sister(s) once a week. - This one...well, this one, we totally own! Brigid LOVES facetiming with her Auntie Jess, and I like actually seeing my sister every week.
Except for the week she was on her honeymoon, anyway. I mean, really? She couldn't have found time to talk with me from Antigua?

8) Make a meal entirely on my own (I don't cook, so this might be the biggest one of the year!) - I tried to make my own butternut squash soup, to work up to this whole meal thing, but once I got past cutting up the squash, Steve took over because he just thought it would be easier.
This. Will. Happen.

9) Create an art wall in my staircase. - No.

10) Organize a playroom for Brigid. - No.

11) Organize a workspace for me. - No.

12) Give up meat for a month. - No.
Well, this was a rough stretch of the list, wasn't it?

13) Take Brigid on a picnic in the park, just the two of us. - Oh, yeah. We've done it once already, but I have big plans to do it at least a dozen more times this year.

14) Read at least one book a month. - I am actually ahead of the game on this one. I made it through all three Hunger Games books, and two of the Dragon Tattoo books by early March, before realizing my reading selections had been especially depressing this year. So, I took a break to read both the Tina Fey and Mindy Kaling books.
It was a nice break. It was a FUNNY break.
Now it's on to the final Dragon Tattoo book, then...I don't know. Suggestions?

15) Take Brigid to South Bend for a weekend. - I'm starting to think this probably won't happen this year. Vacation is getting scarce, and it's only March.

16) Get a mirror or painting for the dining room wall. - Not yet.

17) Do the 30 Day Shred for the full 30 days. - Oh, I did it, all right. But I do NOT look like Jillian Michaels, and I would like my 30 days back now, please.

18) Research/practice meditation. - No.

19) Find a 'mommy and me' class of some sort for Brigid and I to attend. - No.

20) Write something, anything, not blog related. - No.

21) Take a bubble bath once a month, just because. - Yes. Just because.

22) Take one lunch break a week, even if it's only 15 minutes, to sit somewhere quiet and recalibrate/reflect/replan the next few days. - No. In fact, I am failing miserable at this one.

23) LAPS everyday. - Ditto.

24) Implement a $50/month budget (for all gratuitous expenses: make-up, lunches, coffee, clothing, accessories), and stick to it. - January and February? Excellent, excellent work by yours truly. March?
Eh, not so much. A $100+ trip to the Gap outlet kind of did me in.
But. But! I followed that up with a trip to Target where I didn't buy anything for myself, not even the brightly colored sunglasses I tried to talk myself into buying, AND I managed to get out for $30. So, back on the shopping wagon, I am...

25) Give up carbs for January and February. Except maybe birthday cake, because I am not a machine. - HAAAAAA! No. Maybe April and May?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Game Time

My grandfather raised me to love Indiana basketball. Watching games together, or watching games separately, then coming together to discuss them at a later date...that was OUR thing. My mom didn't like basketball. My sisters didn't like basketball. My aunt was a Duke fan.

My grandpa and I always had our Hoosiers.

When my family was gathered around him in the hospital several years ago, while we were waiting for the doctors to take him off of life support, while I was trying to figure out what my final words should be to the man I loved so much, my mom said, 'tell him about IU winning last night'.

So I did.

I still have a box of tapes in my basement, video evidence of every win (wins only, of course, because he taped over the losses) IU had over a good twenty year period, that my grandmother gave me after Papa's funeral. I still love Bobby Knight with all of my heart, because that's who Papa loved. I went to Notre Dame, but I've never stopped cheering for IU in basketball, even though they play each other every year.

In fact, I actively tried to root against them when I went to those games when I was in college, since I didn't want to get boo'd out of the student section, but I just couldn't do it.

It drives Steve nuts.

I can't help it...

So, if you need me tonight, I will be sitting in the nosebleed section of the Georgia Dome, waaaaaay past my bedtime at 9:45PM, wearing red in the sea of blue-clad Kentucky fans that I can GUARANTEE you will be descending upon my city tonight, trying to cheer my Hoosiers past those #1 seeded (and very much hated) UK Wildcats.

My Papa would be so proud.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring is in the air...

I know I'm a day late to the party, but happy spring, everyone! Without a doubt, and completely disregarding the absolute dust storm levels of pollen we have floating through the air right now, spring in Georgia is by far my favorite time of the year. The weather is warm, but the sweltering heat of summer hasn't hit us yet. The flowering trees are all blooming. The bugs aren't terrible. You can be outside for longer than five minutes without calling BS on this whole nature thing, and heading for the nearest indoor location available to you.

I love spring.

And I love the good mood that spring brings with it....

And in other happy news...did I mention that I interviewed for a promotion a few weeks ago?

(I honestly don't remember if I did or not, and let's be honest, I am much, much, MUCH too lazy to go check my own archives to see whether I did or not...)

Well, if I didn't mention it, I'm mentioning it now...I interviewed for a promotion a few weeks ago. And I met with my boss's boss today, as sort of a second interview, and...I found out this afternoon that I got the job!

It will be more responsibility, and I'll be managing people that were my peers just over a year ago, which will be a challenge in and of itself, I think, but I'm always up for a challenge, so I couldn't be more excited!

Also, terrified. But mostly excited. Ok, maybe about 70/30 excited to terrified. Or 60/40? Definitely more excited, though.

But yeah, still a little terrified. Maybe just do me a favor and keep your fingers crossed for positive reactions from the rest of the team when the announcement goes out next week? Thanks...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Luck of the Irish

I am half Italian, without a single drop of Irish blood in my body, but I also went to Notre Dame, which means that St. Patrick's Day is something like a religious holiday to me, purely by association. And as such, I wore green every day last week.
It's just something I do, I guess...

(Also, I think I'm more likely to actually post outfit shots if I take them with my phone, because I'm probably going to remember that I want to take pictures when my phone is all I have, but I'm still trying to figure out the quality aspect of things. I'll get there. Maybe...)

Dress: I don't remember, but I know it's from Dillards
Sweater: J Crew (outlet)
Boots: Another brand I don't remember, but these are from DSW

Friday, March 16, 2012

Friday Round-Up

One last comments on yesterday's post, and then I'm done:

The bizarre high school insecurity flashback that's been going on for the last week isn't something that's always there. And that's one of the reasons I needed to get the words out on paper, because it was so annoying to me how I could go from being moderately well-adjusted to being a neurotic mess, solely because I was in my own head. Generally, if I have any sort of issue with anything, I can move past it by just saying the words out loud, and I'm assuming that will be the case here, as well.

In fact, I am already well on my way to being excessively full of self love, so expect post after post about just how awesome I really am...

You're welcome.

(But seriously, thank you all for weighing in with your own thoughts. Wouldn't life be so much more pleasant if we could all just quit beating ourselves up over things that really aren't worth the trouble?)


So...onwards and upwards! Looking for a way to kill some time this weekend? Well, I just might be able to help with that, because I haven't shared my favorite links in a couple of weeks...

I generally love everything Amy has to say. This post about getting in your own way is no exception...

I think I could spend hours and hours trying to redecorate my house based on my favorite movie sets.

Even toddlers need a Birchbox substitute.

I love creative storage and organization ideas, whether it's for laundry or cling wrap.

I definitely have a thing for pleats, especially when they take the form of a swirly skirt. I'm probably a little too excited that they're making a comeback...

All of those thoughts I have about parenthood? Yeah...Jennie has them too, but she's much more articulate in getting them down on paper.

And, of course, a few of my favorite outfits in the last couple of weeks, from oomph to Cee to Kendi. I'm ready to try them all...


Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

I wish I had the answers...

(This is all a very depressing read, I think, so feel free to just come back tomorrow. I haven't exactly been a ball of sunshine lately, and I just wanted to get it out. Maybe we can just chalk it up to a third-life-crisis and call it a day...)


Last week, as I've only mentioned around here a million and a half times, my sister got married. And since she still lives in Indiana, and her husband is also from our hometown, most of their friends that came to the very small wedding went to my high school. And since I wasn't the biggest fan of high school, it was just a generally weird experience for me.

My sister is five years younger than I am, which means that Jess and I never overlapped at all in school, and really, that was probably the best thing that could have happened to our relationship. Because where my sister has always been the taller/skinnier/prettier of the two of us, I think there could have been room for crazy jealousy on my part if we were at all closer in age. She was the cheerleader, I was in the band. She dated athletes, I did not. She ran around in cute bikinis on spring break, I stuck to my one-piece. She's always had a great sense of style, I wore over-sized flannel shirts and tennis shoes all of the time.

When I was a sophomore in college, she came to visit me, and I took her with me to a party at a friend's apartment, where I had to clarify that she was a freshman in HIGH SCHOOL to the random guys trying to hit on her while we were there.

I kind of think she was always hoping I wouldn't add that high school part to the end of her quiet little 'freshman' response when the guys asked her what year she was, but hey, I may have taken my 14-year old sister to a college party, but I wasn't a COMPLETE idiot...

Anyway, I love my sister more than anything.

But her wedding...and her was just weird. Not bad weird, because we had a ton of fun, and I really did enjoy spending time with everyone that was on the trip. But...weird, nonetheless. Because as a 32-year old mother with a good career and a very happy life, you'd have thought that I'd be over all of my old high school insecurities by now. Heck, I thought I was over all of my old high school insecurities by now. And yet, it's all I've been thinking about since we got home.

In high school, I was shy to the point that people thought I was stuck up (OMG...I'm pretty sure this makes me the main character in a John Hughes movie, doesn't it?!?!? WHERE WAS JOHN CUSACK WHEN I NEEDED HIM???), and outside of my group of friends or the core group of people I had classes with for all four years (it was a small school, I took mostly advanced classes, there wasn't much variation in who I spent my days with, really...), I'm sure I made very little impression on anybody. I don't think I really came into my own until college, and I've really kind of tried to block everything before that out of my memory.

But, I seem to have fallen into this trap of comparing myself against people that I always considered 'better' than me (for lack of a better way to explain it) when we were teenagers, and I still see myself as not measuring up. And that is so ridiculously stupid, it makes me mad.

Now, I don't know if I'm being clear, or not, but this is all in my own head. I don't want to make it seem like someone else was the catalyst for these feelings, when it's been more about a rush of memories than anything else. And really, even in my memories, it's not the fault of other people. Mostly. It's all me.

I don't know why I have this inferiority complex, if that's what it is. I never lacked for support or encouragement when I was growing up, and I generally like the person I've become since then. But still...

In my mind, I fall short.

Why do I do this to myself? And how do I get over that?

And more importantly, if I, at this point in my life, haven't gotten over it already, how do I keep Brigid from ever getting there in the first place?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Still Here

Between my self-imposed shopping ban (still going strong!!) and my general lack of time for most things these days, I kind of feel like my ability to dress myself has faded away a bit. The one thing that always kept me on top of things, the one thing that really made getting dressed in the morning fun, was taking pictures of my daily outfits and sharing them here with all of you lovely people.

Then some people found out about what I was doing and I felt silly. And then work became incredibly busy/exhausting. And then I remembered that I loved to read and watch tv and spend time with my husband, away from my computer from time to time. And then I stopped going to bed early, which meant I stopped getting up early, which meant I didn't have time to take pictures in the morning before I left for the day.

And by the end of the day? Nobody wants to see what that looks like, believe me.

So, style blogging stopped being fun. And I stopped doing it.

I've tried reshaping this space into something a little less rigid, a place where I can maybe put into words those things that are bothering me that I can't put down on my family blog, because my mom reads that one, for crying out loud, and she doesn't need to know everything, after all. But, I'm not sure that's working, either, to be completely honest.

So, now what?

I'm not giving up this space, entirely, because this is still my space, where I can be my usual charming self (shut totally find me charming, and you know it...), but still, maybe, also be a little...less charming...if I need to be. Because life isn't all rainbows and unicorns, right?

Oddly enough, this started out as a post about how I was going to try to start taking pictures again, even if they were just crappy iPhone pictures, because that's all I had it in me to do these days. seems it kind of became something else. I just don't know what I want to do, I guess.

Stick with me while I try to figure it all out, please?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Big Thanks!!

Do you know how there are some people out there that just GET you? They say something, and you think, 'hmmmm, what is that person doing in my head?' or they wear something, and you wonder, 'when did that person go shopping in my ideal closet and how can I get my hands on that?' or they laugh at something you say and you want to know, 'why does this person live hours and hours away from me, when we could have SO MUCH FUN if she just lived right down the street?'.

Some people are just awesome like that. And they become even more awesome if they organize their closet, come up with a few items they've just not been wearing recently (or at all, ever, judging from some of the tags...), and immediately think of you.

And when they box those items up, and send them to you while you're on vacation, so that you're greeted with a whole new box of clothes when you get home?

Best friends for life, obviously.

Thanks, Tiff!!! Can't wait to start working these into my wardrobe rotation ;)

Monday, March 12, 2012

It's good to be back....

....well, sort of, anyway. I guess. I mean, I'm not super excited about going back to work, or anything, but it was good to be back with Brigid. Except for the whole part of the weekend where she didn't nap yesterday and then refused to go to bed last night.

Other than that...yay!

But still...I miss the beach...

And also, I miss my baby sister (who was really the only sister that I took a ton of pictures with, since the middle sister was all busy with that whole wedding thing and whatnot...)

But, you know...I had laundry waiting for me when I got home, a layer of dust to deal with, and bathrooms to clean. So...I'd say it's a fair trade off, no?