Wednesday, October 31, 2012


I didn't feel like dressing up in costume for Halloween, so I dressed up my twin french braids instead, with orange elastics (the easy DIY version here). It's festive, but I don't have to see the orange! (Tip o' the braid to Gracey, Mia, and Tia! I know you three will enjoy this color.) And now for my worst Halloween costume story: When I was a little bitty girl, my mama made me an excellent Native American costume. She made it cheaply, out of paper bags and markers, but it was fantastic and I was having a fine time trick or treating in it. rained and I got soaked. I still remember stomping wetly back into our kitchen and tearing off the wet bags with a soggy rip. In tears, I declared that I was "never going to be a paper-bag Indian again!" And I never was.

Sweater - Simply Be, Leggings - Walmart, Tank - thrifted.
The real highlight is my cool skull necklace. It's from Send the Trend, several months ago, and I restrung it (and probably should again. It's just between creepy and cute. It's so tiny that not many people notice it unless I point it out, which makes me feel like I have an awesome secret. And sometimes I make him talk to freak my sister out. Because that's always fun!

Sunshine Award!

Gracey gave me the Sunshine Award!

The rules for the award are:
  1. Include the award logo in a post and/or on your blog sidebar.  Done! 
  2.  Link to the blogger who nominated you.  Done! 
  3.  Answer 10 questions about yourself.  See below. 
  4.  Nominate 10 other fabulous bloggers and ask them 10 questions.  Man, this is the hard part... 
  5.  Link to your nominees in your post and let them know about the reward.  

Thank you, Gracey!! You're truly the sunshine on my cloudy days!

  1. Tea or coffee? An itsy-bitsy bit of cappuchino in a big mug of dark chocolate cocoa.
  2.  What would the name of your autobiography be? "I don't like people, but you're quite nice!"
  3.  Reality TV; guilty pleasure or sheer idiocy? Sad and annoying. Only exceptions: cooking shows and geek shows like Mythbusters and Dirty Jobs. 
  4.  Favorite James Bond actor? Is this where I admit that I haven't ever seen a James Bond movie all the way through? As an actor, my favorite one is Timothy Dalton. Random choice, I know.
  5.  Ocean or mountains? Mountains for life, ocean for vacations.
  6. Favorite author? EVERYONE. But in a pinch, or on a desert island, give me Jane Austen and Warren Ellis.
  7.  Thanksgiving pie; pumpkin, pecan or something else? Chocolate pecan.
  8.  What are your thoughts on techno music? Interesting, but not my cup of cocoa for long.
  9.  What is the last movie you saw in a theater? Looper.
  10. And, finally, because Halloween is tomorrow Today!, what is your favorite scary movie? The Watcher in the Woods!!! It is the bestest Disney kid's horror flick, and what my sister and I watched for every sleepover we had as kids. Plus, it has Bette Davis in it in her late 70's.
And now it's time for my questions. 
  1. What's your biggest fear, realistic or not?
  2. Favorite superhero movie?
  3. If you had to pick one genre to read for the rest of your life, what would it be? (memoirs, steampunk, cookbooks, what?)
  4. Is there a show that you just can't stop watching, even when it's bad and the characters do stupid things?
  5. If you could go forward in the future, what question would you ask your future self?
  6. What basic annoyance gets on your nerves more than any other (lateness, rudeness, etc)?
  7. Pie or cake? Or no sweets like a really annoying person I want to slap?
  8. What's been your best (or alternately worst) Halloween costume?
  9. What's the best band/singer you've discovered this year?
  10. What's the best thing that happened to you in the past week?
And I'm nominating these 9 ('cause 9 is my lucky number)
(and yes, some of these are complete dreams that they'll repost):

  1. Cammila of Dressed Up Like a Lady
  2. Carrie of Petal by Petal
  3. Chelsea of Bright Side Dweller
  4. Georgina of Cupcake's Clothes
  5. Holly Elise of Starlit Home
  6. Jen of Epbot
  7. Jenny (The Bloggess) of The Bloggess
  8. Jessie of Vanderbilt Wife
  9. Lilli of Frocks & Frou Frou
EDIT to add: Oh my sweet LORD. Jenny Lawson (the Bloggess) emailed me back after I sent her an email to let her know that I gave her this award. And I quote: "You so rock! Thanks!" My life is now complete, or will be once I print that out and frame it, since I'm totally lame and fangirly.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Sweater - JMS, Jeans - Simply Be, Shoes - Earth Spirit (thrifted).
What part(s) of your body cause(s) people to make assumptions about you? For me, it's my hair most often.* When I wear it down, it's "sexy hair", according to most women (I've never had a man tell me that at work). I'm lazy with my hair. I wash/condition it, then pop some hair oil in it. I don't blow dry it or straighten it, not specifically because it damages your hair, but really just because I'm too lazy and uncoordinated to bother. I was blessed with wavy hair, and if I run some hair oil through it and let it dry, it looks like this for several hours (and then it gets really big). But people think I make an effort on my hair, even after I assure them that I don't.

I find it helps me to realize that everyone has at least one part of their body that I'll love. They might not think it's totally awesome, or work on it, or even really notice it. But it could be the first thing I notice about someone. People notice what I do with my hair, which always seems vaguely crazy to me, since I'm so bad at doing anything with it, but I do acknowledge that genetics blessed me with some fantastic natural hair. But when I look at pictures of Gracey and her amazing smile, Tia and her great butt, and Mia and her fantastic torso (seriously, something about your elegant little curves just kills me!), I know that everyone has that THING that strikes people in a first meeting and gives them an instant impression of what that person is like.

These shoes make me feel like Heidi!

*And like most busty girls, in high school, my large chest convinced people that I was slutty.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Welcome to the storm

Cardigan and Boots - Simply Be, Shirt - Avenue, Leggings - Walmart.
Sandy's effects have started hitting the mountains of Virginia. So far, we're just getting snow and rough winds. On Monday at least, it wasn't pretty snow, though. It was that gross snow/rain combo that melts on the road and only serves to sting your face as you run to your car, cursing your desire to wear boots that apparently have a hole in them somewhere since you now have a wet sock in one boot after shopping in a huge crowd for a munchkin costume and warm shirts for the kids to wear underneath their costumes on Halloween. (Side-note: Did you know that apparently little girls don't wear turtlenecks anymore? Or at least they don't sell them.)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Excited yet terrified

Cardigan and Tank from Simply Be, Pants from Lands End, Necklace from a street fair.
So. Big news! My sister and I have decided that we will start to look for property together! The idea is that we want either two built houses, or one house with room to build a little cottage for me. (Which should be easy enough, since we're looking for several acres of land as well.) Our own little commune! This is just a plan/looking around at the moment, but it's still enough to get me all excited and nervous. I really could end up living in my very own tiny house! If you follow me on Pinterest, you know that I have a whole board devoted to tiny little houses. I'm obsessed with the idea of living in my very own little space that I've filled with books and it not being an apartment. Not to trash people who like apartments, but I don't like being surrounded by people. At all. I make an exception for my family, but that's it.

I've taken several home decor quizzes since Jen and I talked about this idea yesterday evening, and I keep getting odd results. I've decided that my preferred aesthetic is Pretty Stuff That is Not Overly Precocious or Sweet. (I made that up myself, you know.) Just...comfy stuff that's nice and not overly "done". Also, I want built-ins out the wazoo. Bookshelves up to the ceiling and a little bitty book ladder to get up there, so I can pretend I'm Belle. A little kitchen with open (door-less) cabinets.

The idea of me living on my own is thrilling. I'm 31 and I've never actually lived alone. Part of it is being close to my family, part is not having much money while doing things like getting my MLS and working part-time, and the rest of it is my epilepsy, of course. I don't take baths unless someone is in the house, because I could seize and drown. I'm looking at non-loft tiny houses (even though lofts are beautiful), because I would break several bones if I seized and fell out of a loft. Ditto the fact that I'm thinking about 1-story houses to avoid any stair related injuries. Even after living with it for 12 years, it's weird to have my illness affect such a basic part of my life as what type of house I can live in. Luckily, I love one-story shotgun style houses. But I'm ready to finish what I think of as growing up and building a house really appeals to me.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Winter is coming

My niece is starting to show signs that she'll be all lean and lanky as she grows up. Look at her, all adorable in her little sundress! She'll be 7 in 3 weeks (boo). I ordered a ton of stretch elastic that came in yesterday, so we've started making some hair ties (like the Twist Bands, but DIY). I bought 20 yards of elastic, which would make 80 hair ties if we don't screw any up or decide to make some headbands. That's a ton! Enough to not worry about losing, plus, I bought a ton of colors, even orange for Halloween. You can see the blue one on my wrist to put my hair back once I got to work.

I painted my nails, too. This color came in a Birchbox, and I just kept not getting around to it. It's called "Put a Pin In It" and is a sort of rosy-gold metallic sparkly. I don't usually like the Color Club colors, but this one was cute and it dried very quickly. Which was fantastic, since I randomly decided to paint my nails this morning after getting dressed.

From some weird confluence of Hurricane Sandy and a winter storm, it's supposed to go from very warm today (77, which is warm for the VA mountains) to 38 with possible snow by next Tuesday. I really do need to shift my closet this weekend from warm-weather clothes to sweaters.

Sweater - Target, Pants - Denim 24/7, Shoes - Dexter, Necklace - Send the Trend.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Monday morning, not the middle of the night like it looks.
 I don't care what anyone (or any study) says; Monday is a wretched day. And as you can see, the stress of the last few weeks gave me a giant zit on my forehead that my sister attempted to pop too soon. So, it's taken much longer than usual to go away. BOO for stress and not getting enough sleep because I'm too undisciplined to stop reading!

Monday's outfit: Top - Avenue, Pants - Lands End, Shoes - TOMS, Necklace (hidden by hair) - street fair. 

Tuesday. Or maybe a mug shot.
I thought maybe some bright colors would help today. Yesterday's palette certainly didn't do anything to help. And I do love my little epaulets that are so spangly. I'm a little crow-like with the right shiny stuff (aka not diamonds - too glass-like). This is another one of the good t-shirts, in a nice soft jersey that drapes well and shows off all the right curves.

Tuesday's outfit: Shirt - JMS, Pants - Simply Be, Shoes - TOMS, Necklaces - self-made.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Spirit Day

Cardigan, tank, and shoes - Simply Be, Leggings - Walmart.
This tie front cardigan comes in mocha and stone. It seems to me that "stone" is often another word for "boring beige that washes out Erin's skin" so I bought the mocha and I'm pleased to report that it has a bit of a purplish undertone to it! Odd, but pretty. I love how it's long enough to wear over nothing but some leggings and a tank, keeping me warm in a little cocoon.

Today is Spirit Day to stand against bullying for LGBT teens. So I wore a purple tank AND a purplish long cardi! If there's a generation that we need to give some extra support to, it's definitely teens. Puberty can be enough of a wreck when you're CIS. For LGBT teens, we need to make sure that our love comes through even more, since society is still backwards.

I am... Are you?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Why do we wear makeup?

Barefaced, wearing lip gloss.
I know lots of women who wear makeup; more than I know who don't wear makeup. They wear it everyday, no matter where they're going or what the temperature will be. Some of them wear a "full face" of makeup, some wear "no makeup" makeup. Even though I would count myself as a woman who doesn't wear makeup, do I really fit into the makeup category since I wear lip gloss every day? This isn't really going to be an anti-makeup diatribe; I like makeup, I'm just not invested enough in it to wear it. I'm lazy on the subject on fixing my hair and makeup, so I will only wear makeup if there's a good reason for me to (a job interview, date, or acting on stage are all some good reasons). This is about self-esteem, and how makeup is often used to spackle over the holes we have in our self-esteem.

Are you a woman who wears makeup everyday? Do you just want to look fancy? Or do you have a skin issue that you want to cover? Any reason you want to wear makeup is a good one, I think. If wearing makeup makes you feel pretty, then I think you should. But the important corollary that goes along with makeup is that you need to realize that you're just as pretty without it. The problem arises when women feel that their faces are lacking, aren't pretty, without makeup. Magazines have taught us for years that unless we put on X, Y, and Z every day, we'll look like horrible sweaty beasts. But you'll just look like someone with no makeup on. 

All you have to do is pick which way you want to look. Either way is fine, the way to pick is the way that makes you feel good about yourself. And if you feel better with some foundation and eye shadow on, then slap it on! But if putting it on messes with your head and tears up your self esteem, leading you to believe that you can't be seen in public without any makeup...maybe you need to think about what you're trying to hide behind all of it. Figure out why you're uncomfortable with yourself, and if you do and are ready to pop on some eye shadow after your self esteem is back to normal, then by all means do it!

Feel free to discuss this in the comments, but any mean or hateful comments will be deleted.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pins and Smiles

Top and Cardi - Avenue, Pants - White Stag, Shoes - TOMS, Necklace - Send the Trend.
Today was definitely a work pajama day. I don't know why this cardigan insists on photographing as pinkish, when it's a stone red color in real life. Of course, this necklace finally broke today (luckily in a way that I can fix it tonight with a jump ring and pliers). I don't know why, it's not like I swing it around it all the time or anything...

So, today you get some of my favorite pins from lately! I can hear your excitement!
 Pop Art Book Excitement!
Soul Crushing Sherlock/Doctor Who Mashup!
The realization that Patrick Stewart will never really age and is still hot!
And finally, some props for science men!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Stressed spelled backwards is a horrible week

Sweater - Simply Be, Leggings - Walmart, Shoes - Dexter.
Last week was just a titch over my ultimate stress level. There was a work day that I actually felt like vomiting from stress for...oh, about six hours. And my period is a week late. Usually, when something stressful happens, my period comes early. But apparently, when I'm completely stressed, I just don't have it. Which would be great if I didn't want to vomit and/or have massive headaches. The work issues that caused all the stress are slowing down, so hopefully one day in the future I'll come home and feel like doing something other than hibernating. PRO TIP: Win the lottery so you don't have to work. (If any of you have won the lottery and would like to donate some of your winnings to me so I don't have to work, I'm also up for that idea.) However, I made it through all of this without a seizure or an panic attack (I have an anxiety disorder that is exacerbated by the medications I take for my epilepsy), so I'm counting last week as a horrible win. Plus, I never did actually vomit. But, I did discover a new (to me) singer. Ellie Goulding, another Brit like Adele, but more pop-ish. This is a cover of the Elton John song, and a little different than the majority of her stuff, but I like this home-made lyric You-tube vid.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Rain, Rain, I hate your guts

Top - Simply Be, Pants - Denim 24/7, Shoes - Target.
I'm a big fan of super-long tunics, aka "tunics". To me, unless the shortest point hits mid-thigh, it's just a long shirt. I don't care what the company calls it, a long shirt is not automatically a tunic! I don't hate long shirts, I like them since I don't have a short torso; but the fact remains that just because a shirt is long doesn't make it a tunic. Semantics are the issue here.

Also, while I'm being grumpy, I have a suggestion of a face cleanser to not use. I had a sample packet of Fiafini's Delicate Cleansing Emulsion from Beauty Army, and even though I'm happy with what I'm using at the moment, I thought I'd try it. As for cleansing, it was nothing special and left my sensitive skin on the dry side. But the smell...oh, Lord, the smell. Listen, I've used tons of fragrance-free stuff on my skin, and tons of "organic cleansers", as well as all the usual drugstore stuff. So I'm used to plant smells, chemical smells, and chemical "no-smell" smells. But this...this was without a doubt the foulest smelling thing that I was designed to put on my face. It just smelled bad, as if it was actually bad. Like the nasty stuff you find under piles of leaves. (If you were wondering what I do use to clean my skin, I alternate between boscia Purifying Cleansing Gel and One Love Organics Skin Savior Waterless Beauty Balm.)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

YAY Sweater Dress!

Sweater and Boots - previous season's Simply Be, Undershirt - Target, Leggings - Walmart.
It was 38 outside this morning, so I felt perfectly justified in this outfit. It's only supposed to get up to 60, so it's not like I'll boil if it does actually does get up to that. We've had our cold snap, and turned the heat on, so  it's official sweater time. I've ordered more Simply Be boots and everything! (I'll give a full report when they come in, for other full-calved girls.) And Mia, I know you'll want to know: Yes, those buttons are on two big pockets that just fit a paperback. I figure the bright color perks everything up, and the cable-knit will perk me up.

 Does anyone have a favorite scent? I'm terribly fond of Harvey Prince's Ageless, but I can't really justify the price to myself at the moment. I got a sample in a Birchbox, and used it all up. This month I get a sample of their Yogini, though, so we'll see how I like that. One-notes that I love include any real (not chemically) Lavender and Lemongrass. I used a lemongrass-sugar scrub (a sample of Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser)
this morning and was gloriously happy from the smell.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Officially Dark

Sweater - Nicole Miller, Jeans - Simply Be, Shoes - Dexter. 
It's officially dark now; sunrise is coming around 7:20 am or so, and we leave the house well before that. Autumn is my favorite time of year, and corduroys are so delightfully iconic that I can't resist pulling mine on as soon as the weather cooperates. These royal blue corduroy jeans are super cheap ($35), come in flare and straight leg, three different lengths, and six different colors. Best of all, in my opinion, they have concealed back elastic. I've talked numerous times (okay, complained) about how jeans fit on a hourglass body, but elastic in the waistband solves that huge gap in the back I get otherwise.

And for that much needed pop of color, I put on a necklace I made. Doesn't it look like gumballs? Also, you can't see them, but I have black socks with a blue argyle pattern on them! Walmart has No Nonsense Super-Soft socks now, and they really are.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Pattern Pre-mixed and (non)-Christmas Color-blocking

Country chic
 A co-worker complimented me on this dress, telling me I was totally in, with the whole pattern mixing thing my dress had going on. The truth is, I've had this dress for years, and seeing as how it was thrifted then, it's probably much older! Trends come and go, but they're the same trends every few years - military, neon, soft fluffy stuff (ultra girly), preppy, etc. It's getting darker in the mornings now, so I might have to move inside for pictures for the fall/winter.

My little teapot necklace.
This necklace was one of the first ones I pieced together, and I still love it. "The shape of the teapot is pleasing to my eye", she said in a snobby voice.

Cardi and Top - Avenue, Jeans - Simply Be, Shoes - Dexter.
 I work at a university, and when it's a Friday football game-day, we're encouraged to dress in the school colors. But. Those include orange, which (a) I dislike, especially on myself, and (b) I don't own a single orange garment. So I just wear whatever I want, because really, I don't care about football anyway. I went to every single high school football game, since I was in the band, but I have no idea how a game is scored.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Fancy Non-blazer

Obviously, this jacket from yesterday is not a blazer, due to my dislike of blazers. It's a tweedy sort of avant-garde twist on a lady's hunt jacket. I might get the back tailored a bit, since I have some room around the waist, but a size down would probably be too tight around the bust. This jacket also has the most beautiful buttons ever, two sorts alternating all over.

Joe Browns Parisian Jacket

Today was warmer and not rainy (yet!), so I'm only slightly bundled up. Have I mentioned how much I love Fall and my ability to layer and wear sweaters?

Cardi and Top - Avenue, Pants - Denim 24/7.
Last night I just fell into bed, so it was one of the few times that I picked out my outfit in the morning (barring outfit complications, of course). I have no theme, or inspiration for this outfit, just colors I like and a pair of clean pants that fit. Random outfits often seem to work better than planned ones for me!

Monday, October 1, 2012

I sometimes use curse words when I pray*

Dress - Joe Browns, Leggings - Avenue, Socks - Sock Dreams, Shoes - Crocs.
Proportions are all in the eye of the beholder. I love this dress, but it has less room in the bust than I expected, turning it into more of an empire waist than I had expected. I asked my father if it made me look a little chunky, because it's not fitted the way most of my other favorite dresses are, even the empire waists. And my father looked closely at me, and promptly told me yes, I did look a little chunkier than usual in it. Which, as you might expect, was not the answer I was looking for. Then at lunch at work, a random office co-worker told me how small I was getting! (Not really a comment I ever go looking for, actually, but one that was helpful today.) I explained to her that I'm just hourglassy, so it depends on what I wear as to how I look.

And that's precisely true; I have a comparatively small waist, so dresses with empire waistlines like this one (aka without ties or belts) can obscure my waist, leaving only my bust and hips as the outstanding viewpoints. The dress is made of cotton, but the pattern makes me think of all of Sal's Desigual dresses, which are too expensive for me (and don't even come in my size, anyway). Thus endeth the ramble, because I have nothing more to say so far today, other than I'm going to Looper tonight. 

*And also the post title is from the Avett Brothers song "Me and God".