And we’re back to Monday! I had a busy but fun weekend. Hanging with my mom on Friday, attending a fundraising gala on Saturday, and visiting a craft show on Sunday.
Speaking of the craft show, it was being held at the Revolution Brewing tap room that is less than half a mile from my house. I thought this was a great opportunity to actually wear a sweater, a scarf, and a puffy vest so that I would be warm enough on the short walk there but not feel too warm or bulky when I was navigating the wares.
This vest is perfect for wearing to something like a craft show. The pockets are large enough that I can put my wallet, phone and keys in them and not have to worry about carrying a purse.
Speaking of the craft show, I was there with Annabelle and some other people scouting out vendors for the monthly vendor fairs they host at the storefront we’re calling Collage Collective! The next one is on November 12th and you get all at the details here.
On Monday I took the day off to attend a LuLaRoe training with Annabelle, since I’ve become her right-hand-woman as she starts her own business. We’re even becoming a “brand” in her VIP group on Facebook due to our shenanigans during FB Live sales (join the group so you can experience it for yourself).
Anyway, while some of the training was kind of cheesy and some was downright weird, I fully admit that when we were asked to write down our big hairy dream, I was a bit stumped. But then Annabelle asked me what mine was…and I started crying.
All I’ve ever wanted was to work a job where I felt like I was wanted and needed. Like I wasn’t fighting against the tide. Like I wasn’t trying to change everyone’s mind all the time. Like I wasn’t begging people to want to work with me.
Weird that I’d want to start helping out with what is basically a retail sales gig, right?
But I love customer service. I love helping people. I love connecting people with the information, people, or items that will enrich their lives or help them out in some way. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it’s one of the reasons I went to library school.
Unfortunately, because I didn’t know it at the time, I went a completely different way with my career and ended up in positions where I was managing change. Where I was moving people’s cheese and trying to get them to like it. And it wears you down, you know?
Do I want to be my own boss? I honestly don’t know if I have the hustle for that. One of my favorite jobs was actually processing criminal case files at the county courthouse because it was fun for me and didn’t require me to do any kind of change management. It just didn’t take as much time as they thought it would (or I’m just really, really efficient) so I was bored a lot. I hate being bored.
I don’t know exactly what my big dream is. I don’t know exactly what I want to be when I grow up. I just know that I want to do something that helps other people without me having to tell them how much it will help them if they just stop resisting change. And maybe it includes some data entry. Because I weirdly like that.
In the meantime, I’ll help out Annabelle, cry occasionally, and try and figure it out.
What’s your big hairy dream? What do you want to be when you grow up?
Oh, and if you want, I’m hosting a shindig at my house in June where you can shop for these exact Stella & Dot pieces in person. If you want an invite, just leave a comment and I’ll send it to you!
Dannie at Stile Foto Cibo recently wrote a post about what happens when you see “that” photo. You know, the one that makes you cringe? The one you can’t seem to laugh off. Yeah, I had one of those photos recently. And I’m going to share the outfit that caused it. Because, I don’t want to seem like I’m perfect or I have it all together. I’m a real person!
I’ve written in the past about my workouts, my weight lifting, and even how I tracked all my fat, carbs and protein “macros” to get a six pack, crazy arm muscles, and still lose 10 pounds. But, I kind of quit doing that about a year ago. Partially because I wasn’t eating enough for my activity level or I had lost too much body fat. Either way, my body was giving me signs that I needed to back off.
And then I started marathon training last October and definitely didn’t track what I ate. However, I also haven’t gotten on a scale in months. I’ve gained body fat, for sure. But I know I’ve gained some muscle and I’m definitely stronger! I finally broke my long-standing PR of a 100 pound bench press (managed 105 pounds!), can do six unassisted pull-ups, am able to do 5 reps of 65 pounds on my overhead press, and I ran a marathon time I never expected to be able to do.
So, even if I am not as lean as I was almost two years ago, it’s really okay. These quads and glutes are allowing me to do some awesome stuff. Having a six-pack is not necessarily sustainable long term for me. And sometimes you just gotta drink some wine, eat a burger and finish up with ice cream, you know?
Plus, as I was cleaning up in the locker room post-workout on Monday, another woman said to me, “So, I notice you every day at the gym and you look amazing. I’ve tried to figure out your routine. What’s your secret?” We are our own worst critics sometimes, aren’t we?
P.S. I created a “Shop My Closet” page that allows you to get some sneak peeks of upcoming outfit posts and see product details for them in advance!
So, I fully admit that I think I blew my entire plan to save money by not shopping when I went to the Moonfish Pop-Up shop earlier this year. You already saw my black top, jeans and necklace, but I also purchased this amazing sweater. Because, you see, when I told Sarah that I didn’t own anything to really wear with leggings she basically refused to let me leave without trying it on. And, of course, I loved it.
Sweater – LA Made via Moonfish | Leggings – c/o Moonfish | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same)
It’s so soft and cozy and….long. So, yes, it covers my butt. And, yes, I’m wearing leggings as pants. But, as I mentioned the last time I wore these leggings, they’re structured enough to feel like skinny jeans.
This sweater can also be worn off-the-shoulder, but that always feels kind of awkward to me. So, instead, I’m sticking with the cowl neck that is just slouchy enough to be comfy but not so crazy as to be overwhelming.
However, it turns out that my office at work cranks the heat near my desk when it’s cold outside! So, for once, I won’t necessarily be bundled up all winter. I’m sure, though, I’ll find enough opportunities to wear this sweater. I mean, wouldn’t you?
Who’s ready for Monday?? I’m still battling a cold that hit me hard last week and I ended up spending most of Saturday afternoon in bed napping. It was glorious!
However, that didn’t leave me much time to snap photos, even though I’ve worn some variation of this outfit approximately three times in the last week and a half. I attempted to get a snapshot for this week’s Style Imitating Art challenge but I used the wrong lens and the photos came out blurry and grainy. You can’t even see that my earrings are feather shaped!
Scarf – c/o Moonfish | Vest- Gap (similar) | Shirt – The Limited (similar) | Jeans – Paige c/o Shopbop (same) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Earrings – Le Tote (same)
I went with grays and blacks since those are the main colors in this week’s pick. And, of course, my brown riding boots for the tan/orange accent, See, people have been pairing black and brown together for decades!
I was able to get my brown boots shined at last week’s Shoe Drop event and it really made a huge difference! I’ll be writing a whole post on the experience and the event later this week. Let’s just say, though, I think everyone who attended was pretty impressed and is looking forward to seeing what Shoe Drop can do for them.
In a fit of absolute lack of imagination and total basic-ness, I wore a very simple outfit to work on Monday. And then I photographed it. Because, I guess, that’s the whole point of this blog, right? I’m not aspirational. I’m…realistic? Anyway, here’s what I wore:
Cardigan – The Limited (similar) | Jeans – Old Navy (similar) | Shirt – Le Tote (same) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Scarf – c/o Moonfish
This scarf is one of the ones Sarah from Moonfish gave me. It’s so soft and the colors are so rich. I’m actually glad it’s scarf weather again so I can wear it.
Speaking of Moonfish, their next pop-up shop is November 10th-13th at Beermiscuous. Shopping and beer? Yes, please. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to make their last pop-up but I’m really hoping to make this one. Why? Because the scarves Sarah gave me when we met hang on the back of my kitchen chairs so I can throw them on on the way out of the door. And the leggings are getting worn way more than I thought. So clearly Sarah knows how to pick good stuff!
So, if you’re in Chicago and want to join me for some beer and some shopping, let me know! Or, if you’re free this evening, the 26th, I’m hosting an event at the main Shoe Drop retail location and 353 N Clark Street from 6-8PM. Free drinks, apps and shoe shines! These riding boots are going to get some love, let me tell you. Yes, women need to get our shoes shined, too. And I’m totally going to take advantage.
With the return of Daylight Saving Time we also get the return of…..Chewie cameos!
Yes, now that I can take photos outside after work again you’ll be seeing quite a bit of my furry partner in crime.
Sweater – Le Tote (same) | Jeans – Old Navy (similar) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Earrings – Poshmark (similar)
Chewie is super smart and has learned that when we get the camera out it means that he gets to go outside. He doesn’t always cooperate during the photoshoots but overall he’s pretty good.
Plus, the roof of our apartment building is currently undergoing some major construction which means no rooftop photos for the time being. And when there are going to be courtyard photos instead it definitely means Chewie gets to come. He wouldn’t have it any other way.
By the way, my husband starts (yet another) new job this week and we’ve re-signed our lease to stay in our current apartment for at least another year. So hopefully we’ll be here when the roof is finished so that I can get some more photos with the Chicago skyline in the background!
Also, shoutout to my friend Bethany who is starting a new job this week, too! She needed an almost entirely new wardrobe due to a new dress code so I took her shopping a few weeks ago. She was less than thrilled to have to buy new clothes so I tried to make it as easy as possible for her. If you hate clothes shopping I’m more than happy to have you follow me around the store while I hand things to you to try on. Sort of like your own personal shopper but with less pressure to purchase anything!
When I was chatting with Katie from Personally Paleo on Saturday she was asking me about whether or not I had any series on my blog. Well, of course I do! Style Imitating Art, to mention just one. But it reminded me that I hadn’t done a Pinterest Parallel in awhile. So here’s one for you.
Cardigan – Old Navy (similar) | Dress – Neiman Marcus Outlet (similar) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Scarf – NYC street vendor (similar)
I based it on this outfit that I saved on Pinterest. I mean, it’s pretty simple. A black dress with brown riding boots, a tan cardigan, and a leopard print scarf. I’ve had items like this in my closet for years. I even have two “little black dresses” that would have worked for this outfit.
Jason and I took these photos outside my parents’ house. They live on a golf course and this tunnel goes underneath the road. I was hoping that it would be less windy down there but, alas, not so much. Also, we forgot our camera so we borrowed one from my parents. Resourceful, that’s us.
looplooks.net occasionally receives vendor/ brand sponsorships for mentioning their products and services…..like these boots.
First, I have to say thank you for all the wonderful comments on yesterday’s post. It’s interesting; on Tuesday night I attended my first Idea Potluck and was blown away and inspired by everyone who spoke. It was just what I needed to remind myself that sometimes you just need to put yourself out there and ask and you will be happily surprised at what the universe gives you in return. So, thank you, everyone, for reminding me that being who I am is perfectly fine.
Vest – Old Navy from Jen (similar) | Shirt – Le Tote (same) | Jeans – Old Navy (same) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Necklace – c/o T&J Designs (similar)
Even if who I am is a gal trying to take pictures outside her parents’ house, which happens to be situated in the windiest part of all of Central Illinois.
Anyway, today is apparently St. Patrick’s Day although Chicago celebrated last weekend. I avoided the crowds downtown and still got to see the green river on my walk to work on Monday morning. I also figured that since you’re supposed to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day I’d share this outfit with a greenish vest. It’s close enough, right?
I mean, even though my name is Erin (which basically means Ireland), the closest I’ve ever come to Ireland is an Irish pub. Even if my dad tells me it’s as authentic as you’re going to get in the States. I also plan to drink a Guinness (Nitro IPA) tonight. So, you know, close.
We’re having really warm weather in Chicago this week but back when it wasn’t so warm I needed some layers! Bring on the vests, I say. And the turtlenecks. And the boots. And the stairwell that hopefully you won’t need to see for much longer since Daylight Saving Time starts on Sunday!
Vest – Groopdealz (similar) | Turtleneck – Express (similar) | Pants – Old Navy (same) | Boots – Sam Edelman c/o Shopbop (same) | Earrings – The Limited (similar) | Beer – Sam Adams
I go back and forth between beer and wine. I like to have something when I get home from work and while I’m making dinner. I’m also easily suggestible when it comes to what to drink. Take this “prop” for instance. I saw a guy on the elevator one day with an assorted pack of seasonal Sam Adams beer so I bought it the next time I was the store.
Right now I’m on a red wine kick. But, as warmer weather gets closer I might move back to beer. We’ll see.
Oh, and because it’s not a stairwell photo shoot without a Chewie cameo, here you go.