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Archive for the ‘My Life’ Category

In today’s downtrodden economy, it’s more important than ever for stores to sell, sell, sell. I try to do my part to help out. I shop when I can. But I feel the need to do more. So, I want to offer some advice to all the clothing stores out there. Something for you all to keep in mind not only as we collectively face a recession, but for future reference too.

But no one likes just flat-out advice, right? So let’s begin with a recent anecdote. It starts last night. Actually, it starts Monday night. When My Guy told me I had plans for Saturday and that I should dress up a bit. We aren’t talking cocktail dress or anything, but something to match his own dressier outfit.  But he would say nothing more.

Clearly he has something up his sleeve. I figure the most a girl can do in this situation is buy a new dress for the mystery occasion. And really, I’ll take any excuse to hit up some of my favorite stores. And no, I won’t post a pic of my dress. It’s a surprise, really all I have to counter his.  I think he takes the cake on surprises in this scenario though.

Anyway, yesterday after work, I hit Michigan Avenue. There is something to be said for working a block east and just a touch south of a famous shopping district. I tried on dresses, and cute as they may be I noticed something I’ve always noticed while shopping. Garish, fluorescent lighting washing me out and giving me greenish undertones, highlighting the general pastiness of my nearly translucent skin and making my eyes look like I hadn’t slept in a good month or so.

And so we come to the advice section of this post. It applies to all stores as I have yet to encounter one that has picked up on it. Here it is: soft lighting is our friend. Seriously, put me in some flattering light while I try on your merchandise and I’ll stick around a while and end up saying “Damn, I look good, I must buy this…and this…and this,” instead of “Augh! I’m a hot mess, must flee the store immediately!”

Seriously, what I wouldn’t give for somebody to just get that!

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Oh, so much to say, so little time.  First of all, the contest winner.  After throwing participants’ names into a Starbucks mug–coffee keeps me balanced–I’m happy to announce the winner is…Marissa!  I’ll send along your prize just as soon as I get it from Nilsa.  Um, cause I left it in her car…long story.

In other news, maybe it’s because My Guy is in Puerto Rico this week, but I began contemplating summer, and my lack of sandals.  So I ordered some online from my new favorite site Endless.  Why favorite you may ask?  Because they offer free, overnight shipping on select items.  And that included both pairs of sandals I got.  They arrived Wednesday, promptly in time for the snow we received.  Sigh, a reminder that it is, in fact, still February and there are still a good two months or so moving forward before I can actually wear said sandals.

This past weekend was a reunion weekend of sorts for me. On Saturday night, I met up with an old friend from high school that I was happily able to reconnect with thanks to Facebook and our reunion. This is how I know she and I really are friends despite being out of touch for almost a decade: we sat in a bar talking and laughing about the past and present for four hours. Then, on Sunday I met up with a college friend in town for dinner.  We laughed and talked and enjoyed half-price sushi.  Yum!

This week is work, work, work, capped with a movie on Monday (thank you work for giving us President’s Day off) and martini night on Thursday.  Oh, it also entailed a cold.  I’m hoping it’s planning on leaving soon.

And how are all of you?  Anyone else ready to purchase some sandals?

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About 12 years ago, I stopped eating red meat.  If it bleeds when you cook it or resembles blood in anyway, I don’t want to eat it (which is also why I don’t like to eat beets–they look like blood and taste terrible, gag).  For a while I stopped eating poultry.  And so, when it came cookout time I first turned towards veggie burgers.  I like a good veggie burger, but they just don’t taste the same.  And I needed some protein.  And there it was…soy.

And so I tried Boca burgers.  (Disclaimer: Boca is a client of my company)  Mmmmm, Boca burgers.  As far as I’m concerned they taste like a real burger (I don’t really remember what a hamburger tastes like any more, or a steak).  I’ve heard their chicken patties are to die for as well.  Every summer I stock up on Boca burgers for the grilling season.  And, they are also good crumbled on a salad.  So, imagine my delight when I got to attend a Boca-sponsored event all about balanced living.

I attended with the ever-fabulous Nilsa of SoMi, and got to see other fabulous blogger pals. And in honor of healthy, balanced living we sampled Boca burgers, yummy side salads, and were treated to manis, pedis and massages, plus tips on healthy, balanced living. I think pampering is definitely part of a balanced life. It’s just about treating yourself well, treating others well.

And speaking of treats, Boca supplied a most excellent goodie bag that I am now gifting to a commenter. It contains, among other things, a yoga mat, a day planner and a relaxing CD. So leave me a comment about how you live a balanced life. All participants get their name in a hat and one lucky winner’s name is coming out of that hat. What are you waiting for? Comment away…

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Check In

I haven’t been the best blogger of late.  Because things?  Are going great.

Personally, professionally, things are awesome.

So awesome, that I’ve been busy.  And this one time, I don’t want to write about it.  I just want to experience it.

So excuse my silence.  But know all is well.  Really, really well.

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I’ve never been huge on New Year’s.  When you get down to it, the clock turning from 11:59 to midnight on December 31, is really no different than when that happens on, say April 5.  Years are real, but time is constant.  The numbering is something we made up arbitrarily (or not if you’re a Christian, please don’t send me mail).  I’ve also always been a firm believer that if you want to effect some sort of change in your life, do it whenever, don’t sit around and wait for the calendar year to flip.

This year though, things are different.   I definitely feel different somehow.

I’m good.  Things don’t bother me.  I’m less worried and I feel calmer about myself, my life, people around me.  I feel more free in a way.  I’m not trying to anticipate the future.  And I’m not naive.  I know it might not last.  But I’ll take it while I can.

I know that a lot of people, from bloggers to FB friends to those in my 3-D world have expressed a frustration with 2008 and a happiness to see it over.  It seems like for a lot of people anyway 2008 was sucktastic.  Even the Daily Show in its own mocking way referenced many people’s opinion that 2009 was a year of change and hope.  So, if you’re one of those people who couldn’t wait to kick 2008 to the curb, I hope that you too are finding some reassurance and calm in your 2009.  And that you too can say “Hey, nothing bad has happened to me this year.”

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Hello all.  I thought a few pictures might be good as we all shift into 2009, away from the holidays, and onto…what exactly?  I guess Martin Luther King Day…I get the day off work, and why not honor the man?  Oh, and of course there will be an historic inauguration in a few weeks.  One of my friends (she knows who she is) mentioned a party.  I’m counting on it, you-know-who.

And on to photos.  In June, I posted this pic of my bedroom.  100_6196

That is the Merlot-colored, velvet bedding I had for about a year.  I don’t know that I was ever crazy about it; it’s just hard to find a duvet set for a full sized bed.  So I think I kind of settled.  Anyway, velvet is hot.  And it doesn’t mix well with flannel sheets, and this just wasn’t me.  Enter, thanks to my fabulous mother, this as of Christmas.

dsc00052

Some people have some, ahem, issues with parents buying them clothes or decorating.  But my mom knows my taste.  And to be honest, I made this easy on her.  The duvet cover and matching shams were from CB2, and I sent her the direct link in an email.  Uber-easy to get me what I wanted.  Then of course, she added the bedskirt and throws and well, it all just came together.  She had help from her coworker and friend, Libby’s Mom, who is an experienced decorator and painter.  And, she made me three paintings for above the bed.  Which is funny, because a few weeks before Christmas I had the thought, maybe I should ask for some artwork for the bedroom.  Anyway, here’s a shot of that.

dsc00050She incorporated the colors and remembered that one of my favorite flowers is the calla lily (the other being daffodils).  This is just SO much more me.  I love it.

Let’s see.  Oh yes, I wanted to post a pic of me on NYE.  But there weren’t any of just me; and I don’t want to post pics of people in case they aren’t ok with that.  Anyway, I may or may not have had a few jello shots that night.  And a couple of martinis.  And then champagne.  Hehe, yeah.  I have a lot to write about the new year and how I’m feeling.  Let’s just say, invigorated.  And leave the rest for another post.

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It’s interview time! I’m taking part in a blog interview.  Nilsa sent me five questions, which I’ve answered below.  If you want to take part, let me know if the comments below.  I’ll send you five questions to answer on your own blog.  It’s nice filler for the end of the year.


Enjoy.

(1) Name only one blogger you really respect and tell me why.

I’m going to say Marissa, because for one reason, she got me into blogging and hence led me to meeting all the other bloggers out there!  Also because I’ve known her since we were 14 and I can say, there’s a reason this girl was homecoming queen and has like 700 FB friends.  She’s one of the most sincere, caring, genuine and fun people I know.  She’s supportive and friendly and always there to offer me advice, which is a lot.  I really think a lot of other people would be annoyed, but not Marissa.  She’s been one of my pillars in recent months and I selfishly want her and her boyfriend to move here this summer.  But I respect almost every blogger out there, I swear!

(2) If you had to pick a non-urban, U.S. destination in which to vacation for a week, where would you go?

Napa Valley.  My reasons are threefold.  One, because I love wine.  I’m a wino, I said it.  I want to drink it and visit the vineyards and enjoy it all.  Two, I’ve heard the scenery is gorgeous.  And who doesn’t like to look at pretty things?  Three, I’ve heard it has some really good hiking and biking, in addition to wineries and spas. So there’d be a lot to do in all that scenery in case I want to give my liver a break.

(3) If you had $500 to spend on housing, food and entertainment for the trip mentioned in (2), how would you spend it?

Oy…that doesn’t sound like much.  Can I bring along my mother or a sugardaddy to pay for the rest?  Kidding.  I’d see how much could get me a B&B room, and that way I’d get a healthy breakfast at least.  Can I try to pluck a few grapes from the vineyards?  Never underestimate the length a baguette can take you; I’d have to replicate my days in Europe wherein it, and some cheese, comprised my lunch.  That may necessitate more hiking than biking and well, I may have to nix the spa.  I want a bigger trip allowance!

(4) Tell me about one person with whom you’ve lost touch. If you hope for a reunion, how would you like that reunion to take place?

A few months ago, I would have answered with my friend from high school, Anna.  We were great friends in the day, and lost touch over the years as will happen.  She’s the person I always wondered about–what happened to her, what was she doing.  But we reconnected via Facebook and our reunion.  It was fun.  And I’m happy we reconnected.  Now, it’d probably be my friend L from grad school.  Again, we just lost touch somehow and I’ve always wondered what happened to our friendship and to her.  I’d like us to catch up over wine and good food and perhaps a shopping trip.  If there was one thing she and I did well it was indulging.

(5) In 2008, what was your biggest achievement and your biggest failure/disappointment?

Remember in my last post how I expressed my desire to say good riddance to 2008?  Yeah, it was a fairly craptastic year, especially in the second half.  Not-so-great things happened, and things that were supposed to be good imploded into piles of poo.  So in a year marked by death, relationships ending and changing, a trip to the ER, troubles at work, and a lot of the unexpected, I don’t know that any one thing was the biggest failure or disappointment.  But there is this.  I survived it all.  I came out of it stronger and with a sense of myself and some pride in tact, restored and added on.  I can hold my head up high with how I handled it, and how I acted this year–honest, myself, with integrity.  And that, I think, is my greatest accomplishment.

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