Resale Stalker

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

These shoes are why you stalk your local resale places. I found these Michael by Michael Kors leather loafers in the spring for $12.50. Yup, I said it. Go twice weekly- on a Tuesday or Wednesday evening and on Saturay mid-day so you get the best of what's coming in as people sell their stuff. I have my best luck with designer or higher end shoes on Tuesdays (people who are into fashion and work retail will generally have Monday or Tuesday off). I also really love this heathered lightweight boxy sweater. It's a silhouette I've been very happy has become "fashionable"- I've had my fair share of looser sweaters, I'm just glad I can a) wear them and b) find more in resale shops since they're "trendy".

Pants: Zara...Button Down: Target...Sweater: Buffalo Exchange...Shoes: Michael by Michael Kors via Buffalo Exchange

30 Days Hath November: Day 25- The contents of my purse: I laughed so hard when I read this prompt. My bags are never just a purse- they function as a lunchbox, makeup counter,shopping bag, filing cabinet... I start weeks with a reasonable amount of stuff, but it explodes out of control. It's still particularly junky and filled with funny things after the Thanksgiving weekend away.

Day 28- A Skill I'd Like to Learn: I want to learn fine finish carpentry. I want to know what species of wood is good for different projects. I want to learn how to use major power tools and confident. It won't happen in our tiny tiny apartment, but someday.

Day 29- Someplace I'd like to visit: If we're talking about a reasonable/ attainable place to go- I am dying to check out the Pacific Northwest. I sense Portland, Eugene, Seattle, San Francisco... would all be places I could get into. A little hippy, super friendly, temperate weather, gorgeous landscape. My kinda town. If we're talking dream trip, I want to drag my super-adventurous sissies (Sissy S lives in China, Sissy A travelled through India alone for 3 weeks and both travelled through Turkey together.) along on a trip to Africa. One day. And I chose Africa mostly because I wouldn't be the only lame-o to have not been there. I've known people who go for various reasons, from missionary work to intensive immersion experiences for Ghanaian drum & dance ethnomusicology and EVERYONE has said the experience is so filled with community and meeting new lifelong friends.

Day 30 coming soon (and perhaps a day late). Can you believe the month is over?!

Snuggle Bugs

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It got CHILLY... I was so glad I took my shower last night rather than this morning so I didn't freeze my buns off walking the dog this morning with wet hair. TMI? Don't care. It's my game plan for the rest of the winter. The downside, however, is a horrible hairstyle (I was reaaaally hoping I could get away with sexy bed-head waves. Nope.) I also crawled back into my warm bed with dog and husband, while kitty napped on my head for a while. Because I had time to.

The upside of the deep freeze (37 overnight!!) is that I get to wear my coats. Sha-bam! I do look forward to more of this.

Pants: Gap really Skinnies, Button down: J Crew, thrifted...Sweater: Gap...Necklace: White House Black Market...Shoes: BCBGeneration via Ross 

I'm making up for mucho lost time on 30 Days Hath November...
Day 24- Something that means a lot to me: I've been talking about family often lately, so I'mma talk about my furry kiddos. And here's why. I know I'm meant to be a mother. My purpose on this planet is to encourage, nurture, snuggle, provide. I've pushed those aspirations aside for the sake of my Guy's academic dreams (a little begrudgingly) so my Critter Kids really are my sanity. Having little beings in my care, providing me with the joy and silliness of experiencing life with fervor. I love that my dog knows when I need to get active and when I need to just be still. I love that my cat likes to share my potato chips and knows just when I neeeeeed her snuggled up on my chest. They're so loving and silly and intuitive. Whoever tries to say pets are just pets are fullovit.

Skipping to 26- Something I'm looking forward to: GET. MY. HUSBAND. OUT. OF. SCHOOL. Ideally forever, but even just the semester. I want to see him regularly in the evenings. 9 pm rehearsals and all-night paper writing can kiss it.

Day 27- Myself one year ago: Last year I was feeling awfully dark about being stuck only half-way through being the only earner. I decided to sign up for Real Estate classes as a diversion of sorts and if it opened a new career, oh good. I thought it might also be a new or interesting way to use some of my Interior Design skills. I didn't continue for more than the Spring semester (4 classes online while working full time was a lot to take on and Summer and Fall schedules simply didn't line up) but it was something I'm glad I did to push myself. Oh, yeah, and I was still working weekends at Gap, too. That's a year I don't choose to repeat.

That was a lot to read through. Sorry you all got sucked in and yanked along for the ride. I've never been a journal-writer, so this is fun and cathartic to go along with the 30 Days!

In Preparation

Monday, November 28, 2011

I wore this last Wednesday before Thanksgiving. I knew Boss Lady would have me hauling and carting things around the house in preparation, so I went comfortable. GOOD CHOICE, KATE.

I also decided to steal this scarf that I bought for my guy last year. I wish it was a little less stiff, but I do like the pattern.

Pants: Zara...Shirt: Gap Body...Sweater: Gap...Scarf: Men's Gap...Shoes: Nine West Outlet

I'm still getting back into the swing of things and don't really have much to say. Vacation is hard.


Thankful to be MIA

Ladies, gents, kids, dogs, and cats... I got to drop off the face of the earth for 4 whole days. It was magical. And full of Bromance-made food that was soo good (He was a Chef before going back to Grad School for Music). I know I'm a few days late, but here's what I'm especially thankful for.
1. My family, especially reconnecting with my sisters this year. We've been scattered across the globe for years, but things fell a little more in place to spend time getting involved and invested in the day to day stuff over the phone. I'm thankful for my husband, who has been very sensitive to my frustrations of being the sole breadwinner through two cross-country moves and two advanced degrees. I'm grateful for my mom's encouragement, my dad's wisdom, and my brother's out-of-the-blue texts.
2. My home here in Houston has been wonderful. Our neighborhood is so special, our apartment is small, old and funky, but completely "us". Our neighbors are becoming friends and there's animals everywhere!
3. Our Houston friends through the University- the music scene can be a little like High School in the sense that some of the personalities can be catty and competitive, but our crew is nothing like that. Everyone is silly, social, encouraging of one another, generous. I love that there's so much support of one another, inclusiveness in plan-making, consideration of feelings and no one gets wound up if something goes awry. These people are flexible, loving, and good natured.
4. My job isn't perfect, but it's been an amazing stepping stone. The stories I've gathered, the people I've met, the experience I'm still gaining is invaluable.
5. My critter kids are daily encouragement and unconditional love. Being able to have both a dog and a cat who are both so intuitive and loving is such a gift.
6. A solid marriage. It will never be perfect or easy, but we always know that egos will be put aside and a solution will be found. We like each other too much to do it any differently. We're each the counterweight to the other personality.

Thanksgiving visit photos in abundance:

Oh, my gosh. Maple cheesecake with cranberry compote.

Our hosts: Jersey Girl and Bromance

Excited? Yes.

Jersey Girl and the world's largest onion.

I wish you could have tasted that turkey. It LITERALLY fell off the bone, it was so tender. Two days later, heated up in the microwave, it was still juicy.

The tragic game of Monopoly

Me and Jersey Girl, along with the corner surrounding "Go" which she turned into what we called  "@ss-r@pe row"

Look at her cackling. That whole stretch was owned by her.

We ran out of houses in the midst of Jersey Girl's climb to the top... This was Bromance's drunken solution.


Little Known Tidbits.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

This is a funny one, ladies. Get pumped.(Aaaand I'm linking up to the Color Brigade for the first time, good fun!)

Skirt: DVF, thrifted...Blouse: Mossimo via Buffalo Exchange...Cardigan: Target...Shoes: MaxAzria via Buffalo Exchange...Necklace: Target

30 Days Hath November- Day 23: 8 Things you didn't know about me...

1. I've never smoked a cigarette in my life. Don't plan to. No judgement against smokers, I just don't wanna.
2. You may have gathered this from my post a few days ago that introduced my family, but I am the oldest of 4 kids, the youngest of whom is adopted from China. The matching process of kid to family is loooong and draining, but we kind of knew we had to fight for this kid when we found out that they knew nothing about him at the orphanage, but he just happened to have been assigned the same birthday as me. I've never liked celebrating my birthday, but I really love celebrating with my brother. 
3. My cat was dumpster dived. Dove? We literally found her as a tiny kitten in my parents' trash bin after she fell in while foraging.
4. I have a major pink allergy. That deep berry/ fuchsia you see above? That's as close as it gets.
5. My guy won me over in High School when he saved my portion of a dance performance in a student written play. Our music didn't work and he played an improv guitar piece for us to dance to.
6. Yes, I married my high school sweetheart. He's a good one.
7. I am my mother's clone. We are the art appreciators, nature- girls, uncreative cooks, homebody socialites. We both snort when we laugh, prefer thick dark beer, have the same handwriting, despise laundry but love ironing. It's weird, but wonderful to have a sounding board who really does "get you" and I'm glad it goes both ways in the relationship.
8. I miss the AZ desert. I would move back in a heartbeat.

Oh the places I will go...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

In honor of today's 30 Days Hath November, I'm wearing this little number. You'll get it in a minute.

Skirt: thrifted...Blouse: gift from Thailand...Belt: thrifted... Jacket: Gap...Shoes: BCBGeneration via Ross

Day 22: Someplace I've travelled.
My sis has been living in Beijing for years after graduating college. She won a Fulbright to study at Tsinghua, took intensive language classes, fell a little in love with the adventurous lifestyle and stayed. All my other family members visited within her first two years there and, since my guy is NEVER leaving school (kidding) we didn't have any monies saved away for much more than the deposit for our next move across the country. My dad had been squirreling away airline miles and surprised me with a trip this past summer. I spent two weeks with her/ mostly by myself in the city since she was working such long hours. My Mandarin was rusty, but I knew enough to get places and pay for things. I also got good at asking what a vegetable or fruit was, but never understood the 12 sentence replies. Word to the wise: don't ever ask an open ended question with confidence in a foreign language and expect to maintain the conversation. Hoo-larious.

Hawks and Reptiles

Monday, November 21, 2011

New week, short week. THANK GOODNESS. I'm getting burned out at work- I suppose self-indulgence and self-involvement at the expense of those you hired is normal in wealthy culture, but it makes me tired. Boss lady hasn't been mean, just annoyingly self involved. Remember my big extra check I was supposed to receive for the work I did on the Gala? She lost it. After I spent three days asking for it. Because she couldn't spare the 5 minutes looking for it in her multiple purses whilst running out the door with her daughter (who is annoyingly condescending for no good reason) to go shopping for a couch for the back patio. Really? That's why two weeks since the Gala has gone by and I still haven't been paid? Aaaand she second-guessed why I was receiving that big chunk of moolah. Ummm, because I spent the four weeks prior to the event working 70 hour work weeks, including balancing your absurd "needs" against quality of Auction information. Aaanyway, the Director of the non-profit is gone for Thanksgiving, so I don't even know if I can get a replacement check written until a week from now. Poop. 

Enough complaining. Because I'm wearing reptile. 

Skirt: Thrifted...Blouse: Banana Republic, Thrifted...Cardigan: Target...Belt: thrifted...Shoes: via DSW

Today's 30 Days Hath November- Day 21: Something I could never tire of...

I could never tire of enjoying nature. We live in the MIDDLE of Houston. A park consists of a tiny green patch of grass, scattered picnic tables and a water feature to keep kids cool in the summer. New condos and houses are built riiight up to the setback lines. Landscaping consists of a shrub of two. But, every once in a while, I catch a glimpse of "real" nature and I am so appreciative of that moment. The last few days, we've been able to open the windows and enjoy the fresh air, but that means we're subjected to the most obnoxious bird constantly squawking. I kind of figure it must be something special if it was around and screaming for days on end, so this morning, I went on the hunt when Miles and I went for our morning walk. Thank goodness his nose was engaged, because I was able to let him stop to sniff at the perfect angle to see an enormous hawk screeching away at the top of an old oak tree. I never saw a nest, but its sentry position and vigilance makes me think something must be around. I love that my eye can so easily find creatures, so quickly identify plants, even in the city. I love learning about native species, but there's just so little of it here, I appreciate whatever I can find. I can't wait to have kids and expose them to the thrill of being in nature.

Sunday mornin' recap

Saturday, November 19, 2011

30 Days Hath NovemberDay 18: What I wore today.
This was supposed to be for Friday, but been there, done that. I rarely post weekend looks, so we'll do it today. A Saturday look:

Jeans: Gap Always Skinnies...Button down: J Crew Outlet...Sweater: J Crew... Shoes: LeSportSac via DSW

Day 19: A silly self-portrait.
Oh, I'm so sorry for this. I don't know what possessed me to pose this way the day I wore menswear for my Guy's recital

Day 20: A childhood anecdote.
All through Grade School, my mom ran a week-long summer day camp at a local MetroPark. I was a "camper" all the way through childhood and took over as a "counselor" when I got into High School. One summer toward the beginning of my time helping out, we planned a day that included lots of hiking activities around the park, including cutting through the park across the swinging bridge, which was a sturdy suspension bridge that spanned the creek about 15 feet over the water line. I'm pretty sure that the Rangers were put on high alert the week we rented out the Picnic areas, mostly because we reeeeally liked jumping around on the bridge. We would get all the kids to flex their knees downward at the same pace and one kid could jump the opposite timing and get rocketed into the air. No one ever launched higher that about 24-30 inches off the slats, but we definitely made the Rangers nervous. So, we stalked them. And went down to the bridge after we knew they'd already made their rounds down that way. We were nearly all the way through giving the kids each a turn to jump, when this totally excited little boy, probably a 4th Grader, was up. He jumped and his shoe nicked the side cable that spanned below the rail to keep people safe, and the shoe went rocketing into the creek. We spent the remainder of our "hike" fishing this dude's shoe out of the creek, which had the muddiest floodplain known to man, I'm pretty sure at a certain point we gave up trying to be careful about not getting wet and trudged in after it. That sense of joy in an unexpected adventure is why I love kids. 

A little Friday Fun, but stalled 'til Saturday

Friday, November 18, 2011

A few funsies after a quick outfit post... (BTW- I plan on slimming these sleeves a little. the details are great, but they're a little wide)

Pants: Zara...Shirt: Gap...Blazer: thrifted...Scarf: Target...Shoes: Kenneth Cole Reaction via Piperlime

And now for the good stuff.
1. I painted my nails another wacky color. I blame Katie, my nail guru buddy.
2. Even better, Katie is hosting a giveaway. I am already entered. Beat me to the win. I dare ya.

3. I joined Twitter and have only a little bit of an idea of what I'm doing. Follow me @KBMcClure and Instagram, KateBMcClure. I'm fumbling, but it's fun!
4. 30 Days Hath November- Check back later for a multiday combo.

Snuggling up

It got chilly around here! I walked the dog and was cold, but I figured it would be up to 75+ again today. Nope. 65. I was not prepared. At least I had the good sense a few weeks ago to leave a cozy sweater over my chair (No, it doesn't look good with my ensemble, and no, I will not show you). Also, check out my broken-blowdryer, missing hairbrush hair. Nice, huh?

Skirt: thrifted...Blouse: Tucker for Target via Buffalo Exchange...Cardigan: thrifted...Shoes: Steve Madden...Necklace: Thrifted

Day 17 of 30 Days Hath November: My family.
I have been pumped about this one all week. My family is the bomb. From left to right: Momma, Sissy S, Daddio, Brother P, me, my Guy, Sissy A, Grandma and Grandpa. This was our Christmas week Family Vaca two years ago. It's a tiny island on the southern tip of North Carolina and has been a frequent vacation spot for years (Including our wedding and week-long familymoon in two houses).

Here's the details:
Mommy is wonderfully warm, artistically inclined and the most thoughtful, inclusive person in my world. I admire her positivity. Daddio is the king of dad humor, handy as crap, dedicated to a fault and loyal loyal loyal. His opinions and guidance are always the best bet. Sissy S blossomed from quiet middle sister into an adventurous traveller with a thirst for knowledge and new experiences (she's the sis who's lived in Beijing for years). I feel like we're still getting to know one another as adults and it's fun. Sissy A lives in Phoenix and is my sister that I talked about yesterday. She was so obstinate and independent as a kid, imagine my surprise and joy when we spent two years living just two hours apart in Arizona and I discovered how quirky and chill she became as an adult. Brother P was adopted at age 5 from China (we thought for sure we would get an adopted sis, SURPRISE!). We are birthday buddies, 10 years apart. He and I text back and forth all the time, talking about girls, his aspirations and goals with college coming up. His interests are diverse and exciting. I can't wait to see him grow. Grandpa is the cutest old man I know, he's sharp and funny and used to draw pen and ink drawings of buxom ladies. I bet your grandpa isn't that cool. Grandma taught me to sew and is so generous with her time. She also makes some of the best German food I've ever tasted. Me and my guy, well, you know us already. Isn't my family cute? I'm lucky to have them!

Midweek Snoozefest

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Why can't I stay caught up with this blog?! Oh, yeah. It's because I have no computer for myself at home and work has remained relatively crazy. I think the moral of the story is that I need my Guy around more often so I can post in the evenings. Or maybe just because I like him. Whatever.

Highlights from the past few days:
1. I had to catch and release the cutest, most bright green lizard from a bathroom yesterday in boss lady's house. Watching him skitter up the wall was a treat.
2. I know a check was written for the time I put into the Gala from the past several weeks. Now I just need to get hold of it. I want the moolah in my bank account, I worked hard for it!
3. I broke my blow dryer. It lasted through 5 years of intermittent use due to my laziness. That isn't a terrible lifespan, right?
4. My Guy and I fell asleep like gluttons last night- with cups of tequila-spiked cider, Sour Cream & Onion Chips, and watching "Monsters Inc." in bed. Magic.
Pants: Zara...Blouse: Odille via Buffalo Exchange...Blazer: Gap...Shoes: Kenneth Cole Reaction via Piperlime...Necklace: Thrifted

30 Days Hath November (halfway mark and I'm still loving the daily directives So Fawned has put in place!)
Day 15: Some style inspiration for the season. 

And Day 16: Someone who inspires me.
Lately, that would be my younger sister, Sissy A. She's wildly intelligent, independent, hysterically sarcastic, practical in all the right ways, thoughtful and considerate. But that isn't why she's been my inspiration lately. It's no secret that my Guy and I are trudging through a rough Fall. I always love him but sometimes it's dang hard to like him. Sissy A, who has no reason to have to give a rat's patoot, insisted we talk about it AND COME UP WITH MEANINGFUL SOLUTIONS. She spent hours on the phone with her supposed-to-be-older-and-wiser big sis and insisted on positive thinking rather than a bitch fest. She was my reminder to choose to see my spouse in a loving way. And I needed it.
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