the boot market

I need new boots! NEW BOOTS, YOU GUYS. And now that I have a job, I can buy some.

I’m being unbelievably picky about finding the perfect pair. They must have the following qualities: slightly pointed toe (this is the only negotiable point), a shade of brown, a little bit of a heel, very comfortable for walking, can be dressy if I need to wear them under slacks or jeans at work, and can handle mild winter weather.

What a list.

I have never in my life had a pair of non-snow boots that I love and that don’t hurt my feet. That might be because I’ve always been the kind of person who can’t justify paying pay more than, say, $100 for any clothing or footwear item. Everything I own is from Kohl’s or Target.

But I’m beginning to realize that if I want really comfy boots that don’t hurt my feet, and if I don’t want to have to buy a new pair every year, I’m going to have to pony up a little bit more more than $59.99. You know?

Here are a pair I’m considering:

They’re Uggs! I’m not an Ugg fan but these aren’t traditional Uggs at all. They’re supposed to be very comfortable.

I also think these Uggs could do the trick:

Of course I’ve yet to try either pair on. That’s the next step. (Pun.)

As you can imagine, my life since beginning this job has become a whole different ballgame, for better or worse. I’m tired a lot, very busy and my brain is still readjusting to holding all this information at once.

But I’m getting by…and buying boots should help with the transition. 😉

On another note, I’d like to thank Nancy Jane Smith for featuring me on her blog this week. Nancy’s a career counselor and she says “for the past 10 years I have been working with people to help them figure out how to work happier and live happier.” Her site is lovely – go check it out. (Thanks again, Nancy.)

an entirely selfish post about my hair

My hair is getting so long and unruly – I haven’t been willing to shell out the $100+ to visit my favorite hair salon (Devachan) for a while now. At this point, I don’t care how it looks. I’m considering chewing it off because it’s driving me nuts.

For me, the problem with long hair is what the eff to do with it. I can hardly ever stand to have it down, especially in the summer. It’s too hot!

Sometimes it’s really curly. After a few days without washing it, it becomes really straight in certain places. It’s unpredictable and inconsistent.

I usually just throw it up in a pony tail. But that brings a whole other host of issues: two twists of the rubberband isn’t tight enough for my thick, heavy hair, and I end up looking like a colonial housewife. Three times around hurts my head because it’s too tight. Do you see the existential crisis I’m managing here?

I remember when I decided to chop my hair off to chin length a couple years ago. It was quite long at the time:

And despite how cheerful (and young!) I look in this picture, I was ready to throw a tantrum, I was so sick of that damn hair. I went to get it chopped right after this shot was taken (it was taken the green room at the UCB NY, by the way).

When I got stuck in traffic on the way to the salon and thought they were going to close before I could get there, I was so overcome by fury and sadness at the idea of having to live another day with that mop on my head that I started crying on the street. Yup.

I’m a grown woman.

But when I did cut it (I got to the salon just in the nic of time that night), I felt like 10 million smackers, like a huge weight had been lifted…

…as is evidenced by the dorky, happy photo I took to in the bathroom of my old desk job to document the transformation.

Here I am with Kevin’s brother-in-law Eric a few days after I got it cut. God, I loved that haircut.  Come to think of it, Eric’s haircut looks pretty sharp too.

The point is, my hair long again. And I’m fantasizing about shaving my head.

Have I ever told you that I once shaved my head when I was 19-years-old? It happened for reasons I cannot begin to explain, reasons I don’t think I understood myself at the time.

I don’t advise it.

focus on the good – my interview with Julie Cook

One thing I’ve learned on this journey to follow the ol’ bliss is that not everyone has to quit their job and renegotiate their whole life in order to be a happy, fulfilled person. (Duh.)

Yes, that’s what I did. Frankly, that’s what I needed to do. There was no good way to make that boring desk job fit in with my life’s ambitions. But my path is not for everyone.

I’ve been finding myself more and more inspired lately by people who are joyful, passionate and compassionate no matter what they do from 9-5 – whether or not their day job is a huge part of their bliss, takes away from it, or falls somewhere in between.

The Daily Julie is a lovely personal blog written by the equally lovely and charming Julie Cook. She’s one of my favorite tumblr follows. (Mom, tumblr is another kind of blogging website where people “follow” each other like they do on Facebook or Twitter. I’ll explain more later.)

A stylish Southern belle who works in marketing/PR and describes herself on her blog as “a happy wife with a mostly sunny and slightly sarcastic outlook on life,” Julie was gracious enough to let me ask her a few questions. And after my meltdown yesterday, I definitely needed to hear what she had to say.

Continue reading

mexico on a budget!

I was excited to happen upon “Mexican Mama: Affordable Embroidered Whites,” on TheFrisky.com today because they suggest some cute-as-heck pieces for summer that are all under $55! Can’t beat that.

This tunic is on sale for $39.99 at ArdenB.

And this adorable top is on sale for $20.00 at Old Navy.

I love these embroidered whites because they are dressy and casual all at once. Summer!

fabulous hair for a great cause

(image via ChicStories.com)

I don’t think I know a single woman who wouldn’t fork over some hard-earned cash for a good hair blowout. There’s even an entire salon in New York City dedicated JUST to blowing out your hair!

Sure, it’s an indulgence. But what if it were only $10 and going to a good cause?

Next Wednesday, May 26, Kérastase Consultant Salons on the East Coast will offer a hair treatment and blowout in exchange for a $10 suggested donation to Locks of Love!

And if you live on the West Coast, they’re doing the same thing on June 23.

You can book an appointment here.

Gentleman, tell your ladies.

(via FashionIndie.com)

what not to wear + j brand houlihan cargo pants

(Hillary Duff via Denimology.com)

I was just thinking, “I don’t know enough about fashion to be writing a post about fashion!” And then I realized, pffft, that’s ridiculous.

Fashion and style are not just what’s hot on the runway, or what Hollywood is wearing. Style is what looks good on YOU. It’s the timeless, classic, or even trendy stuff that you put on every time you want to look fabulous. It’s the outfit you know flatters your figure, the pieces you know you can mix and match to look your best.

What Not To Wear” is the addictive TBS makeover show where style experts Stacy London and Clinton Kelly kidnap someone who needs a fashion overhaul and give her just that. The show empowers women to choose clothes that are right for them, and London and Kelly are adamant that what’s “in” right now isn’t necessarily what works best for every body type or every personality. “I feel very strongly that style is about the individual, not the industry,” Stacy London says (via SirensMag.com).

I love this philosophy. And I embrace it. Since I used to have a serious weight problem (I lost 115 pounds in my early twenties), I came late to the fashionable clothes game. When I was a heavy teenager and young adult, the last thing on Earth I wanted to do was attempt to look stylish and sexy. I realize now that looking good can happen at any size, but at the time, I wanted to crawl into a hole in the wall and never think about clothes, fashion or changing out of my pajamas.

Since I’m still a curvy girl today – I have never in my life owned anything smaller than a size 6 – I approach getting dressed with a mindset like Stacy and Clinton’s in mind: I wear what looks good on me. What not to wear? Everything else.

That’s why I just wrote a post on Gather about these new J Brand Houlihan Cargo Pants. Have you heard about these? Apparently they’re the hot new fashion trend, made popular first in Hollywood, of course.

They’re $230 a pair (although I’m sure cheaper knockoffs will be hitting shelves soon) and they’ve been seen on everyone from Rihanna to Gwen Stefani to Hillary Duff to one of the Kardashian girls (who can ever remember which one).

(Rihanna via Denimology.com)

I feel badly saying so, but I think we might be kidding ourselves with this trend, ladies. I literally laughed out loud when I saw some of the photos of celebs wearing these awful pants. They look terrible! As I said on Gather, they don’t seem to flatter anyone’s figure, except for the torso-less model on the J Brand website (and even she has to stand funny to make them look good).

The moral of the story is – Don’t be afraid to stick to the stuff that looks good on your body. Just because a new style is trending, doesn’t mean it should be. So stay above the fray.

And if you find someone who looks good in these terrible cargo pants, send them my way, will you? Until then, I’m going to remain convinced that Houlihan Cargo Pants are the fashion Gods’ latest well-played joke.