A Tricky Skirt and Green Curry

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Skirt: Express, thrifted...Sweater: via Buffalo Exchange...Belt: Gap...Shoes: BCBGeneration via Ross...Earrings: Wish  Boutique

Ladies and Germs, I need a little assistance. I gave this little skirt another shot today and am having an exceeeeedingly difficult time styling it. I refuse to wear it only as a black turtleneck, tights and pumps type of look and I refuse to wear it in the capacity of black and *insert accent color here.* This little foray into adding a touch of tan fell very flat, in my opinion. Help, help, help. If we come up with no suitable solution, to the resale shops it goes. In fact, there's a whole lot in my closet that I'll try to sell or donate... I'm thinning the herd. Ahhh, a purge. It's always worth it!

We hosted a dinner of sorts last night for a bunch of friends. Mostly vegetarians. And for the second time this year, I made an enormous vat of green curry- potatoes, onions, bamboo, peppers, a little ginger, a lot of basil. Oh, Good Golly Miss Molly, I love green curry. And I especially love having people en masse traipse through our home for an evening and enjoy each other's company and stuffing our faces. There's something so wonderfully gratifying about feeding people a thoughtful meal.

What's your go-to large group dinner dish?

Artificial Sunshine

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Jeans: Gap...Tank: Target...Cardigan: Gap...Shoes: J Jill via Buffalo Exchange

I'm a fashion cheater. I'll own up to it. Like how I stole an outfit from myself (it's been barely 3 weeks since I wore this last) just to have a for-real sunny yellow look so I could participate in Marion's monthly challenge and boost my mood. Changing the color of your pants counts as a new outfit, right?

Thank goodness for my husband. If you actually made it through yesterday's whiny mess of a post, you know my Memorial Day Off was a major disappointment and Tuesday was a crabby continuation. My Guy convinced me that evenings were for fun and relaxing, so rather than continue to stew, I ought to cram my face with a spicy black bean burger loaded up with mushrooms, avocado and blue cheese dressing, cry my eyes out watching "Milk" for the first time to purge the sobby emotions from my system, blog to my heart's content and snuggle into bed an hour early. A much better attitude by the end of the night.

So, I'm cheerfully linking up with a few goodies this evening... Marionberry Style's Monthly Trend Challenge, Pleated Poppy's What I Wore Wednesday, All Lacqured Up's Work It Wednesday. I love the inspiration I find in these link ups!


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Pants: Zara...Blouse: via Buffalo Exchange...Shoes: J Jill via Buffalo Exchange...Bracelet: thrifted...Shades: Coach via TJ Maxx

Wow, I am in a foul mood today... Skip reading if you are in a good mood yourself and can't handle a Negative Nelly. I was told on Friday (unprompted!) by Boss Lady that I didn't need to come in Monday, that I should take the holiday day off. So, I took her at her word and had an extra glass on white wine on Sunday, ignored all of my chores and cleaning over the weekend, expecting to have Monday to play catch up. Fast Forward to Sunday at 7:50 pm- missed call from Boss Lady and a message saying she couldn't work her outdoor fans and she had people coming over on Monday, so it was a very big deal. Oh, you mean the fans that I explicitly told you on Friday afternoon how to work, you watched me set the remote down in the middle of a table and told you that you absolutely must click the button while standing underneath the center fan of three so all of them receive the radio signal so you don't booger them up? Yeah, those fans. So, upon receiving a panicked 9 am call (there went my relaxing morning...) I wound up popping by the house to fix the dang fans. And then pick up the ordered potato salad. Then pick up ketchup that was forgotten. And then move the furniture to directly under the fan. And then hold flowers while Boss Lady played florist. And then swapped out a 60" round table for the 72" because her cousin invited too many people. And then go out to pick up presecco because it was forgotten about. And then pick up the orchid arrangement because she thought their delivery service was cutting it too close. And by the time 3:00 rolled around, I was hungry, tired and crabby that I missed my day off with my husband. To make it a little worse, I just found out the other gals who work here served and cleaned until 9:30 pm. And so I'm mad I missed my day off and feel like a jerk because they had to work a 14 hour day and I'm the one complaining. I never get "party pay" though. So I left.

Gah, I need a new job. This is ridiculous.

I'll be back to a sunnier disposition tomorrow, but even today is a bust- I wore this crappy outfit because I know I'll be hauling junk and putting it away. I look stumpy and squat. No bueno.

Mosquito Prevention

Friday, May 25, 2012

Pants: Theory via Buffalo Exchange...Blouse: Target...Cardigan: Banana Republic, thrifted...Shoes: Nine West Outlet... Shades: via TJ Maxx

Darn Mosquito.

I have a totally un-girly relationship with bugs. If there's a cockroach in our apartment (they're frequent visitors in our 1930's old funky building) I kill it without a thought. I found a tiny spider in my car at the grocery last night and told My Guy I thought it was cute. I save and escort outside any buggy visitors we find. Worms in my bare hand? Frequent occurrence. I'm a lightning fast mosquito slapper, cat-reflexed fruit fly swatter. 

But mosquitoes (specifically near my ears) are on my list of hatred. Its not a long list but each item receives my seething, burning hatred and the list in total is another post for another time. Now, I can handle mosquitoes when we're outside. I'm relatively left alone and smack an occasional bug on my arm or leg. What I can't handle is when a mosquito gets all up in my ears' business and hangs around. Buzzing. Screeching. It makes my skin crawl like not much else. As a middle schooler, we did a lot of tent camping and backpacking, which meant lots of hot sweaty hiking through forests. You know, where mosquitoes lurk and wait for you. I also had a seriously amazing Boonie Hat for our excursions, but mosquitoes seemed to find their way under the brim near my ears and get stuck. 

If you ever feel the urge, try this out: Rub a Bounce dryer sheet all over yourself and stick a fresh one in your belt loop. AMAZING repellant. I spent the rest of my camping career swearing by shoving the used dryer sheet in the sides of my hideous hat like earflaps, but my summers became much more enjoyable.

Your future picnics will thank me.

Happy weekend, all!

Mound Ball

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Pants: Gap Slim Crop...Tank: Gap...Cardigan: Target...Shoes: Sperry via DSW...Pearls: my fave Beijing vendor

Another round of tales from Elementary School era...

It's no secret that my husband and I are Detroit Tigers fans. I've always enjoyed baseball and the Toledo Mudhens' games were an excellent summertime activity. We got hooked early on playing what my parents call "mound ball"- it a game where everyone in your group begins with the same number of quarters as there are people in your group. Starting with the person on the left, each group member gets a turn every half inning when the order gets to them. At the end of the inning, if the player who last touched the ball tosses it toward the pitcher's mound and it actually lands on the mound (not rolls off the mound into the grass or the umpire tosses a new ball toward the mound) the person whose turn it is receives one quarter from every other member of the group. I loved it for the thrill of possibility and the angst of a ball barely missed. And the maniacal scheming of a 10 year old who tries to pass a nickel off as winnings to their nearest sibling. I should note that major league games now trade out the ball everytime a play is made since they have the moolah to do so, but your local minor league may still use the same ball between innings.

I also played softball as a kid. I spent the majority of my time swinging and missing and playing outfield. Not true. Hanging out in the outfield with my back to home plate, perfecting my pirouettes and tying strings of clover into chains and necklaces. Our coach tried to move me into the catcher's position to keep me more interested in the game, but I stunk, hated it and put in a request for a transfer back to left field.

I had a riveting sports career.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Jeans: Gap Always Skinny...Tank: via Buffalo Exchange...Cardigan: Target...Shoes: Sperry via DSW...Necklaces: Banana & thrifted...Bracelet: Bloom

Since the darling Kendi opened a storefront, has it become like a trip to Mecca to visit Bloom? I feel like it might be a little bit. And I drank the Kool-Aid last Saturday. Three notes: 1. Her shop is beautifully curated and designed. 2. She and her husband are surprisingly softspoken and very sweet. 3.  I did not fangirl out and I'm glad. Woulda been aaaaawkward. Anyway, I brought home two little souvenirs: that adorable bracelet and an elephant printed Baggu grocery bag.

Back to regular programming.

Continuing with the theme of childhood stories, I'll fill you in about the shocking change and disparity of two major childhood landmarks. My parents live 2 blocks from the edge of the local university and we used to take family walks there frequently. Two houses down from the end of our block was a house with a pine tree, which was our designated stopping point for riding bikes since mom could see us from our front yard. I remember vividly the size and shape of that pine tree. It was relatively small and grew several feet from early childhood to late grade school, but the best part about it was that the lower branches drooped to the ground and we found several bright blue robins' eggs underneath after babies hatched every year. When my sisters and I were all home for a few days together over Christmas, we all took a walk down to the university together, making special mental notes about the pine tree... It was at least 50' high and the lowest branches had been trimmed to be 10' off the ground. We kept walking and ended up waiting for the crosswalk that is next to the hill we would roll down as littles. I recall rolling for innumerable rotations before coming to a stop at the bottom. The thrill of rolling, the joy of running down and bouncing your voice. Take a guess how big that hill really is... It is a 3 1/2' high raised lot on the corner. Not a hill. A negligible lump. Shocked the pants off of me. Talk about two major paradigm shifts.

What falsified childhood memories have you uncovered lately?

I am linking up again with Pleated Poppy's What I Wore Wednesday and Watch out for the Woestmans' Watch What I'm Wearing. So much fun!

Pranks and Skivvies

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Pants: Zara...Tank: thrifted...Cardigan: Target...Shoes: BCBGeneration via Ross...Necklace: thrifted

Oh, look... I'm covered in dog hair.

Another little chuckle for your workweek (Yesterday's post was the first in a week of childhood stories):

My sisters and I started going to summer camp when we were teeny tiny. It was the same camp in the Hocking Hills of southern Ohio that my mom had attended as a kid. Mom would work the week-long camp and exchange her pay to bring us as campers. There's endless stories to tell about my summers here, but I'll focus on one of the most ridiculous.

Around age 14, my mom and another counselor led a 3 1/2 day canoeing trip that spanned around 60 miles of river. We had some petite campers, like me and Sissy S, some average sized kids who weren't fully aware of how much physical work it was going to take, and a smattering of 16 year old dudes who, relatively speaking, looked like Hercules compared to my dainty ballerina physique (strong legs and modest arm muscles did not make me candidate for most beneficial canoeing team member, despite my mad maneuvering skillz). Moral of the story, no one knew anyone and mom was well aware we'd need to all bond quuuuickly so we could plan on forcing a team-up of strong with not strong in case we started to lag and need to get to our planned campsite for the night on time. Here's how the bonding went down...

Mom: "Hey, Katie, you could totally prank the guys tonight."
Me: "They been hanging out in their cabin since the week started. I couldn't sneak in to steal something if I tried."
Mom: "Nah, I've asked the other counselor to take them on a firewood hike for tonight. Rally the girls."
(I am not a rally-er. But I was very good at pranks.)
So, we stole a pair of underpants from each guy's bag and I shimmied up to the roof of their cabin, which was set into a steep hillside with no clear way up and laid out a boxer brief smiley face. Grinning and ready to greet the guys as they got back.

We made excellent time with the canoe pairings and several friendships were formed for the rest of our summers as campers.

And my mother is absurd.

Cars: A Tale of Misuse

Monday, May 21, 2012

Dress: Target...Blazer: Banana Republic, thrifted...Belt & Necklace: Target...Shoes: Nine West

I've decided that this week will be all about story-telling from my childhood. And here's why.

Amazing images from Shybiker's day at the racetrack made my mind wander back to kid-dom and the time COSI had a Speed Racers' exhibit about the physics of racing. The theme song got totally stuck in your head and over and over again the narration would remind you to "tuuuuurn toward the apex and accellerate out of the turn." Fine advice for a 10 year old. Many golf carts after that time were tested at full speed. And, no, we did not flip any.

This also led to the thrill of what I can only describe as the strangest afternoon of fun times with my dad and sister. My first car (when I finally started driving at 17) was a '91 Honda Civic with no upgrades at all. Manual, no power locks or power steering, no clock, no cupholders, we didn't spring for the passenger side mirror. But that car was magical. And one afternoon on the ride home from the grocery store that was barely 1/2 mile away, I discovered that if you scoot the passenger seat up and then hold the lever while dad accellerated, you rocket back like you're on a roller coaster. I made him stop the car and my sister and I piled onto the front seat and rode the roller coaster together over and over again in 20 foor increments of pavement. It was the best 1/2 mile car ride of my life.

And one of the strangest stories I've ever divulged to the internets. You're welcome.

5 Years

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Happiest 5-Year Anniversary to my husband! We've been together for over a decade, did a lot of growing up together, and have supported each other through a lot since then, from high school drama to late night college papers and projects to organizing cross country moves to setting up a home (wherever it may be) to misguided dreams and disappointments to budding interests to competitions won to roadtrips to culinery failures. And a whole lot more in between.

Darling, thank you always for encouraging me to be independent, interested and interesting. For allowing me to wear the pants, for being conscious of always fighting fair, for letting me be quiet when I need it and pull me out of my comfort zone when I'm being a weenie. We thrive on the little things and I appreciate that your values are so in line with my own, ever though our families are so different. But, that's just the thing. We value family. We value relationships. And for the first 5 of many many (barring the need to use the Dutch Oven Divorce Clause) more years, we've done a bang up job of making good use of those priorities to foster communities and relationships, regardless of where home is. I look forward to a lifetime of adventure and daily choosing to like and be loving to each other. Because the love part will always be there.

And let's just take a minute to reminisce about how awesomely low-key our wedding was (Photo-overload. Sorry)...

Officially married and documents signed a few weeks prior in my Guy's mom's amazing garden.

Barbeque and beers for the rehearsal dinner (with Grillmaster Dad) led into a frisbee game and beer pong with Mom, Grandpa and sisters. 

And our wedding. What a wonderfully relaxed day to celebrate!


Friday, May 18, 2012

I love my doggy. I love that he loves to be loved. I'm just going to leave you with an only okay-looking outfit and offset the blugh of rainy day bad photo quality with a smeared beagle whose little eyes sparkle when he knows he's going to get his hip scratched if he snuggles in close.

Also, stay tuned this weekend- my guy and I are hitting a marriage milestone... which means a little peek into wedding photos! Oh, and my photos of the courtyard were crap, so I'll try again.

Dress: Gap...Cardigan: Target...Belt: Banana Republic...Shoes: Naturalizer...Bracelet: jade from PanJiaYuan market


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Our neighbors are awesome. Good, fun people, inclusive, kind, funny, and interesting. Several days ago, one woman starting asking around about whether or not we'd chip in a little money and some man-power to sod the courtyard (there's a looooot of dogs in the building and when it gets muddy, they tear it up). We agreed and last night the community gathered to complete the project. Our upstairs neighbor had free flagstone and brought enough for two little paths to lead to our picnic table and will bring more today to finish lining under it. Our artist friend picked up the sod and sand. His wife with a very green thumb gave instructions of where to place potted plants for optimum growth. We all pitched in and tilled the old grass and removed the clumps, we leveled the soil, spread sand and started to lay the sod. And then sat around the picnic table in its muddy pit and sipped on beers and chatted our way into the night.

I'll have pictures tomorrow! It's looking amazing already.

Pants: Gap Slim Crop...Blouse: via Buffalo Exchange...Cardigan: via Buffalo Exchange...Shoes: Nine West Outlet...Shades: Gap via TJ Maxx

On Trend?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

If you were wondering what I wore to Art Car, allow me to finally share! I posted on Monday about the Parade itself, the crazed stormy weather... and, let's face it, the outfit paaaaaaled in comparison to the joy and silliness of the cars and their creators. But, I felt lady-like, springy, put-together enough to schmooze with Boss Lady and her friends, and still looked fresh and sunny. This blouse was such a fun find at Buffalo Exchange- it has odd buttons, a tie waist, a lowered back hem. And in the perfect of-the-moment shade of coral.

Let's also talk about this photo with the sun flare. Taking pictures of yourself is tough. I took 37- 37 crappy shots with only one fun, sort of close to decent shot with the sun flare. Those of you who take your own photos, what are your secrets? Or is my count of failed attempts tame?

Jeans: Gap...Blouse: Odille via Buffalo Exchange...Cardigan: thrifted...Bag: thrifted...Shades: Gap via TJ Maxx...Sandals: via DSW

Pleated Poppy's What I Wore Wednesday and A Little Bit of Lacquer's Work it Wednesday, again. I love these link-ups!

Drumroll Please...

Well, my socks have been rocked. I mean, I'm not wearing socks, but the darling Loren over at The Inclined Plane (who I know you all know and love) has overhauled this blog. Big Time. And not just overhauled, but designed almost everything based on my vague requests and pseudo instructions. I knew a general vibe I was hoping for, but this is so much more lovely than I can express. She's so wonderfully intuitive, extraordinarily talented, and walked that line of taking over and taking criticism like a pro. I am so thrilled to have her handiwork in place and so grateful to have this fantastic new layout in place to represent my blog.

Loren, you're an absolute peach! (Please pop over to her blog and scroll through her archives- I've called her Queen of Color more than once. Her blog is a perfect pick-me-up and dose of real-girl-adorable all at once!)

Pants: Zara...Blouse: Target...Cardigan: Target...Shoes: Naturalizer...Shades: via TJ Maxx

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