Last week I managed exactly one blog post: announcing this week’s Style Imitating Art challenge. Why so little blogging? Well, I was on a work trip to Oakville, Ontario (just outside Toronto) and we worked hard and played hard. Thankfully, I was still able to get my life back on track somewhat this past weekend and managed to get some time in with friends.
That’s where we took this week’s outfit photo: at the entrance to a friend’s neighborhood. The things you see in the suburbs!
For my interpretation outfit, I went with tan and a navy blue accent scarf. I recently purchased this scarf at a local craft show. Not local to Chicago? No worries. You can find them on Etsy from Jaclyn Faye.
Actually, when I first saw this week’s art, I was tempted to wear my cobalt blue top that has a gold zipper. But, believe it or not, I wore that this time last year for an SIA challenge!
So, instead, I went for my tan sweater and my new scarf.
This past weekend everyone in Chicago was talking about the weather. We had some 90+ degree days which makes it hard for those of us who are tired of our summer clothes to bust out our fall layers. Thankfully, I was able to do so a few weeks ago and snap a photo of what will probably be my go-to fall outfit.
A few things to note. One, our neighbors got new siding on their house so it no longer looks like it’s falling apart. And two, basically my whole outfit is currently on sale at Shopbop.
This jacket is probably one of the best items I’ve ever purchased. I wear it ALL the time (well, when the weather allows) and the cost-per-wear now is so low. If you’ve been looking for an olive jacket, I highly recommend this one.
In other news, this past weekend Jason and I got to be extras in a film one of my coworkers is making. Then on Sunday I went and watched Jason and Annabelle at an autocross event. Yes, we did all of that in those ridiculously high temperatures!
Which means I’ll be more than happy when the weather changes and I can wear this outfit again without sweating all the way through it.
There are a few things in my life that I regret not doing. One is buying an amazing blue and black pony print cowboy hat. Another is not taking a job in an archive in southern Illinois. And one is not keeping this kimono from Le Tote.
I mean, I COULD have them re-send this to me in my next Tote, but I put Le Tote on hold every few months to try and save some money. Right now I’m “on hold” and it seems silly to pay the $49 to have them send me a tote just to pay more money to buy this. Right?
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!
For this week’s SIA I had grand plans to come up with something baseball or menswear inspired, take pictures at a local baseball field or even take a trip up to Wrigley Field (which is six miles away from me). However, this past week left me feeling…not so good. And then with the time change and going out of town for the weekend I ended up having to sneak in a few photos last evening just as the sun was setting.
Blazer – The Limited (same) | Top – Langford Market (similar) | Jeans – American Eagle Outfitters (same) | Shoes – Nine West (same)
I actually got this outfit idea from my mom. When I was visiting this past weekend she said that this week’s art choice reminded her of this top. So, I went with it. The colors echo those in the scorecard cover and I went with a blazer instead of a cardigan to echo the men’s wear.
I’ll have a round-up of other outfits inspired by this week’s art on the blog tomorrow. Want to participate? Just send a photo to firstname.lastname@example.org today!
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.
After basically a week straight of dresses I finally got a chance to re-wear (and take photos of) this top and necklace I’ve been loving from Le Tote. Also, these jeans that I showed in my June Shopping Summary.
I really enjoy when I get two items from Le Tote that go together perfectly. It makes getting dressed really easy when I’m not feeling creative.
I’m also debating whether or not to keep this top. It’s super comfortable and it reminds me of a top I bought years ago and wore to death. I used to have a lot of items in my closet this color but now I barely have any. Weird, right?
Anyway, I think I’ve worn this outfit three different times and each time I wore it with different shoes. Once I wore it with my Bucketfeet sneakers. One day I wore it with a different pair of sandals. And yesterday, when I got home, I paired it with my new flat sandals to go to a meeting. I’ve also been wearing those over and over again. I’m even thinking I might get another pair. I don’t know why I held out for so long!
Okay, okay, it might not be so cool today but, hey, I wore this outfit a while back when it was one of our cooler days. However, you will never hear me complain about how hot it is! I’ve grown to love the heat. Maybe it has something to do with not running as long of distances in the summer? I don’t know.
Or maybe it’s just that I’m not cool enough for my neighborhood anymore! Seriously, you guys. When I moved to Chicago’s West Loop the street about half a mile north of me was known as “Restaurant Row” but now it seems that the entire neighborhood is getting trendier by the minute! A new restaurant opens up every week it seems. We have two new boutique hotels going up. So many new condos and apartments that are already out of my price range. It’s crazy.
Oh, and McDonald’s is moving their headquarters to a few blocks from me. Not to mention Google has their building across the street from where we board Chewie.
Sometimes I feel bad for not taking advantage of all these new places but, hey, I’m not making “new” money so I guess I’ll just have to continue to be warm and not cool.
Speaking of my furry partner in crime, this past weekend we had perfect dog park weather. Well, perfect for spring, anyway. Perfect for Chewie would mean it was warm enough for the kiddie pool and the hose to be out. That boy loves him some water.
Anyway, we took the opportunity to take some weekend casual dog park trip photos.
A jacket with pockets so you can carry extra bags, keys, phone, and maybe a tennis ball.
A shirt that’s easily washable. You will get fur on you.
Jeans. You will get slobbered.
Shoes that you don’t mind if they get a paw print or two on them. You will get stepped on.
You also get to see me in fill-on weekend mode. Meaning, you get to see me with my hair up. I rarely wear my hair up except on weekends. I’m still working on perfecting the messy topknot. My Type A personality has some issues with it.
Strangely, dog slobber and fur don’t bother me nearly as much. Which is why I think I need this t-shirt in my life. Seriously. I don’t think it could be any more accurate.
Chewie, however, was dying to go play, as you can probably see from the photos. And by “play” I mean try to get some dogs to chase him and then give up and stand next to us until we ask him if he wants to go home. He gets along great with other dogs but is also more than happy to be at home. Just don’t ask to come into our apartment without a LOT of warning. He won’t be too thrilled with that.