Thursday, March 31, 2011

Awkwardly Awesome

Meeting Zac Hanson again on Tuesday was both awkward and awesome (mostly awesome).

  • Not being able to start my husband's car (it's keyless), thus being stuck in the daycare parking lot until he came from work across the street to trade cars with me.
  • Having a too full purse that can't close.  As much as I love the purse I'm using right now, I gotta switch.  It's just too small for all my crap.
  • My down jacket that leaks feathers all over me.
  • Wearing a maternity dress while not pregnant.  They're slightly longer in the front...

  • Having the opportunity to flex my matchmaking muscles again last night.  I think we'll at least get a first date out of this one.
  • Playing Dance Central last night with sis-in-law and friend.  So fun! 
  • A cocoa cappuccino from Starbucks.  It's like a mocha but not as fatty!
  • Having a stock pile of cheesy reality shows to watch on my DVR.  I can't wait to watch me some Millionaire Matchmaker, America's Next Top Model, and What Not to Wear.  I watched Idol last night--Pia still for the win!
  • My weekend plans: shopping with a couple friends tomorrow and a friend's baby shower on Saturday.
  • Jeans day at work tomorrow (not every Friday is casual Friday here).

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Almost Dissed by My Favorite Band

Well, first of all, my work-to-play outfit worked out pretty well. 


After Work:

Unfortunately, right after I took these pictures until I got home at 8:45 (luckily, it was an early night), I was wearing my winter coat on top of it all.

from Katie's camera

I usually take half days when Hanson is in town because for the majority of their shows, fans start lining up early in the morning or even the night before.  Since this was such a small, exclusive show, nobody was there.  Well, there were two other fans sitting in a car when I got there.  I met two of my friends who did have tickets, and we hung out and tried to stay warm for a couple hours until it was time for them to line up.  About an hour before the doors opened, Hanson showed up in a white van, parked, and quickly made their way inside.  We didn't bother them and remained in my car, out of the wind.

Our fourth posse member, who also didn't have a ticket, showed up shortly before the show started.  There were six fans total, including us, trying to convince the venue to let us in.  The security guard outside was SUPER NICE and cool, and he even asked his boss and then the radio station to let us watch the show.  We were told repeatedly that it was just for ticket winners, and even if there were extra spots, no one else was to be let in.  It wasn't up to the venue, and it sounded like it wasn't really up to the radio station either.

Now, I don't have enough good things to say about Hanson, and I completely understand that they wanted this to remain an intimate event  The crowd could've easily doubled in size if the opened it up to everyone since they have a large following in Milwaukee.  However,  I do think it was unfortunate that they couldn't let six big fans sneak in the back, not eat any of the catered food or take up a seat, and just watch.  Especially since one of the fans was a 2-year-old girl with her mom, obviously.

Anyway, my friend and I knew two of the other fans, so we hung out in my card and made our own fun, recounting old tour stories.  Our friends inside concert-called us, so we were there in spirit.  The set was only five songs and there was a short meet & greet afterward, so luckily, we didn't have to wait very long.

Our group after the show let out, from Erin's camera

After getting the scoop from our friends who were inside, we stood outside for another half hour, trying to think warm thoughts, while we waited for the guys to come out so that we could get an opportunity to say hi and get pictures with them.

Zac came out first, and we all crowded him, waiting our turn for pictures.  There were probably about ten of us at this point.  Zac was very kind and obliging, feeling sorry for us that we were out in the cold, apologizing that he was keeping his hands in his pockets (because again, it was freezing), and patiently taking pictures with all of us.

In the midst of it all, someone spotted Taylor and Isaac coming from another exit, making a beeline to their van.  Zac must've been the decoy!  I am crazy, yes, but normally I wouldn't chase after them, I'd like to think.  Being in the cold for six hours made me determined, though, so I scurried after them, shouting, "I wasn't one of the ones inside, I promise!"  I didn't want them to think I was chasing them down after having met them just a half hour ago.

The girl with the 2-year-old daughter and a pregnant girl that was there followed me, so I encouraged the guys to take pictures with the little girl first.  Isaac was pretty cute and started talking to the little girl, saying "You must be cold!  How old are you?  Oh, I have a little boy that's 2-years-old."

Taylor took pictures with the four of us that were standing there...

...but Isaac quickly darted to the van after taking a picture with the little girl and her mom.  Still in my pushy, cold state, I said something to the effect of, "Isaac, where are you going?"  He reluctantly came back, saying that they really needed to get going.

Then, he called for Zac, and I continued to frantically wave my friends over to get pictures before they departed.  I headed back over to the group as Zac was wrapping it up.  He started heading to the van, but I hadn't fulfilled my mission of the day yet, so I called to him and chased him down (again, not one of my prouder moments), and while stuttering said, "I just wanted to tell you that I had my daughter a week before you had yours.  Can I show you a picture?"  Whipped out my phone.  "There's Bridget."  He graciously said, "Aw, she's beautiful.  Congratulations."  So although I felt like a completely dork for doing it, I'm kinda glad I did.

Even though the guys were in a hurry, we did get a little time with them, and I'm glad I stuck around.  Plus, it was such a nice change of pace to be home from a Hanson concert before 9:00.  These old bones could get used to that.

...And Zac's my new favorite.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rediscovering My Blazer

I used to wear blazers pretty often when going out to bars near the end of college and post college. At the time, I owned a purple velvet blazer from Gap and a cheapo black one from Walmart that I bought for an interview. I didn't wear the purple blazer as often because it was a little too big back then. I kinda wish I still had it because it would probably fit now. In my partying days, I felt the need to show a lot of skin, so throwing on a blazer gave me some coverage. At work, I never wear blazers because I've always worked in pretty casual biz-casz environments.

I'm thinking I want to work blazers back into my wardrobe. After watching What Not to Wear week after week and having Stacy and Clinton beat people into waist-nipping jacket submission (in the kindest but most sarcastic and hilarious way possible), you'd think I'd have a closet full of blazers at this point. Nope. I have a black Lauren Conrad for Kohl's one from when I interviewed for my current job last year, and I've worn an old one of my husband's once as a boyfriend blazer, but that's it. OK, I also have two short-sleeved ones, but it's not warm enough for those yet.

Recently, I've been trying to only buy clothes I "need," not anything I find that's cheap. Being in the midst of weight loss is helping with that, too, because I really don't want to buy clothes in my current size if I don't need them. Anyway, so I'm adding a fun, cute blazer to the to-buy list in my head.

In the meantime, I've been thinking of a couple ways to wear the blazer I have in the next few weeks:

The black blazer and skinny pants option makes me think Kim Kardashian, but I thought the below outfit might be a decent work-to-play outfit for tomorrow. I did not get tickets to the Hanson show, but here's hoping one of my BFF's and I still get in! The cardigan would be worn at work, then the blazer added on top of the cardigan after work for warmth. As for the black cords, they seem a little casual for work and a little dressy for standing outside of a concert, so we'll see. Black dress pants switched to skinny jeans may be substituted. And I may scrap the whole outfit by tomorrow and start over anyway. Because comfort over style might be the goal here, considering the circumstances.

Next, I tried to ponder a way to make a maxi dress work-appropriate for the Everybody, Everywear Maxi Day on April 12. After doing a Google search, I don't think a full length dress is going to cut it at work. Hence, I'm going to attempt to belt it in such a way to make it a little longer than knee-length, then throw on some top and the blazer. For after work activities (probably just walking the dog and grocery shopping), I'll let the dress drop to full length. Not sure if that navy striped shirt will work, so maybe it'll be a plain white t-shirt. Hmm, I wonder what wearing a shirt under the dress would look like.

I also have a gray Old Navy maxi dress with black flowers on the bottom that may work better for what I'm trying to accomplish. I'll have to try both and see what looks better.

While I'm thinking of blazers and Everybody, Everywear challenges, I should check out the results of their blazer day for some more inspiration.

Any other thoughts on either my outfit for tomorrow or for Maxi Day?

Friday, March 25, 2011

My First Guest Post!

I hope you guys will go check out my guest post at Chasing Davies!

Here's a preview:

Cardigan, Tank Top, and Leggings: Old Navy; Skirt: Target; Shoes: ModCloth

I really enjoy Meggy's blog because not only does she have great fashion sense, but she also seems like a super fun/goofy girl, so I was quick to volunteer when she said she needed guest bloggers. Meggy requested all her guest bloggers write about what they're looking forward to wearing/buying for spring. Find out what I'm looking forward to. (I know, the suspense is killing you.)

Thursday, March 24, 2011


These two members of the family slept through the night last night:
From Valentine's Day (first day she laughed!)
 These two did not...:

This one didn't either, but I'm not mad at her about it:
Here's how my night went:

9:00 PM - Went to bed.  Stayed up until 9:30 reading blogs on my phone.
12:30 AM - Dela woke me up whining next to my side of the bed.  I figured it was a Lassie-type-thing, and I heard Bridget grunting a little, so I got up, let the dog out, and made a couple bottles.  Bridget was quiet by the time I was done, so I let Dela back in and went back to sleep.
2:00 AM - Dela woke me up once again, whining.  This time, I figured I should check on Bridget.  I did so, and she was tossing around a little bit but was still asleep.  I filled up Dela's water dish, and went back to bed.
3:00 AM - Dela whining again??  I told her to go away and fell back asleep.
5:00 AM - WTF.  The dog again.  I let her out, grabbed a bottle, and headed to Bridget's room.  She was still asleep, so I sat in there until 5:30 when she woke up. 

Since she went to bed at 7:30, Bridget got 10 straight hours of sleep!  Woohoo!  I have no idea what my dog's deal was.  At first, I thought maybe there were bunnies outside that she wanted to chase, but that didn't seem to be the case.  This was Bridget's second time sleeping through the night, so it's probably going to go back to normal tomorrow.  Which is fine, as long as Dela's schedule goes back to normal, too.  I blame the weather.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

America's Next Top Model Cycle 16 Episode 5 Recap

I didn't have my partner in crime with me tonight, and I was trying to be a little quiet since the baby was sleeping. So hopefully the vlog this week doesn't put you to sleep.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bridget Lately

Bridget's wearing pretty much all homemade stuff here (except her undershirt)--neat!

We've settled into a pretty good routine in the Mixed-up household.  I'm still working on finding the balance in my life, but that's nothing new.  Hubs and I have implemented a good system of taking turns so that neither of us lose sleep or patience.  I still do the laundry, and he still does the dishes for the most part, but we alternate nights putting Bridget to bed.  She still wakes up once or twice during the night, so we take turns with that, too.  If one person took the 1 AM shift one night, the other one does it the next night.

Last night, I got up at 1 AM, so when Bridget started grunting and fussing at 4:30, Nate suggested waiting a minute to see if she started crying instead of him jumping up right away.  I mumbled "K," rolled over, and fell back asleep.  At 5:30, my alarm went off, and I heard Bridget grunting a little again.  Nate didn't end up getting up to feed her at 4:30, but he also said he didn't get any sleep that last hour since she had been up the whole time.  So on one hand, score!  We may only have to get up once a night now.  On the other hand, bummer, she's still going to make noise from probably 4-6 every morning.  Baby steps.

Some of you may have seen my tweet yesterday about Bridget's cradle cap.  A couple of my friends reassured me about it already, but it still does kind of weird me out.  The girls at the daycare asked if they could work on remedying her cradle cap.  I said, "Sure, go for it!"  I certainly wasn't having any luck getting rid of it.  By the way, if you don't have any idea what I'm talking about, cradle cap is basically dry scaly skin on the baby's scalp.  It's kind of gross, but not the grossest thing ever, by any means.  Anyway, when I picked her up yesterday, I noticed that her head was noticeably free of scales.  Neat!  It wasn't until later that I also noticed it was almost entirely free of hair.  She now has very short wispy hairs on the top of her head, but her normal hair on the back of her head.  And of course the small bald spot on the back of her head that's always been there.  My poor baldilocks.  Like I said, though, a couple friends reassured me that her hair will grow back soon, and all will be fine.  It's not like the kids in class are going to make fun of her.

Bridge certainly doesn't care.  When I picked her up yesterday, she was all smiles with her feet up in the air.  Her new thing is playing with her feet, which seems to be pretty standard for babies her age.  She still likes her hands and anything made of fabric that she can bring to her mouth, like her shirts, blankets, or the tutu pictured.  I was really hoping she'd like her Sophie giraffe because it's cute and French, but no.  Not so much yet.  Unless it's her feet, hands, or fabric, she's not really interested.

One toy that does hold her attention briefly is her new LeapFrog My Puppy Pal that she received from a family friend.  I think our dog, Delaware, and I are more amused with it right now than she is, but I think Bridget will really like it when she gets a little older.  It's pretty cool because you can program it to say her name.  I also got her one of those seahorse toys that everybody raves about, but she wants absolutely nothing to do with that right now.  I guess we'll stick to her Queen or Journey lullaby CDs when we need her to go to sleep since those seem to be most effective.

Speaking of her sleeping and going back to the fact that Bridget now lifts her feet, that skill has also given her the ability to roll onto her side.  One day I found her practically face down in bed, which freaked me out a little, especially since she was still in her swaddle blanket.  Ah motherhood.  Now I get to worry about my kid for the rest of my life.  I'm starting to understand that aspect of my mom more although I think she can stop worrying about me now.  I'm 28, for crying out loud.

I think that's all that's new in Bridget's life.  Her 4-month checkup and shots appointment is coming up in a few weeks, so that'll be fun to see how much she's grown and such.  I'm glad Nate's taking her again, though, because I wouldn't want to watch her get the shots.  Although he hates needles and I don't mind them, he's much calmer in situations like that.

Me as a Paper Doll

I was pretty excited when I heard about Suze's Paper Doll Project, and I signed up right away.  Giving outfit suggestions and shopping with specific missions in mind are two things I enjoy doing, so this sounded like it would be right up my alley.  Not to mention how much I loved dolls growing up, including paper dolls.

The item of clothing I wanted my outfit to be based around was my yellow floral cardigan from Old Navy.  Hope was in charge of styling me, and I really like what she came up with!  Although I love yellow and blue together (they were my wedding colors), I wouldn't have thought to put this cardigan with blue items since there's not actually any blue in the pattern.  I'll take any excuse to put on my fun new blue heels, so I was all for it.  The first time I wore this cardigan, I was concerned it was too boxy, which made the belt a good add, too.

Cardigan: Old Navy; Cami: NY & Co; Skirt: NY & Co; Tights: We Love Colors; Shoes: (shoo) Necklace: Old Navy; Belt: Luci Boutique
Don't mind my hair.  I was going for the air-dried wavy look, which doesn't work with my hair.  It's either straight or straighter unless I take a curling iron to it.  Don't worry, I brushed it right after I took this picture.  Also, the lighting is a little weird, but I'll pretend I meant it as an effect...

Be sure to head on over to Hope and the Dress Code to see how I styled Hope and her fabulous polka dot pencil skirt!  I'm a little nervous to see how I did, but luckily, she's one of those people who looks great in everything.

Here's the list of all the participants:

Paper Doll Project partners!
Windy City Fashion and Doc Starr Chic
A Fashion Fixation and Snappy and Savvy
A Monkey Fatshionista and Matters of Merry Making
After My Fancyy and Style Within Reach
Closet Confections and Diary of a Chic Mommy
Made by Maison and Queen of Oz
Unusual Form and Curvy with Confidence
Fashion Momma and Employed Panache
Better in Sepia and Silver Pool of Light Girl
The Brunette One and The Stylish Housewife
From the Mixed-up Files and Hope and the Dress Code
Second Star Style and Effervescent Evelina
Pieces of My Earth and The Average Girls Guide
Consumerism Killed My Soul and Fashion Frugality
Kate Olmstead and Lemon Drop Love
Oranges and Apples and Watch Me Dress
Skrush and Tart Lemon Drop
Lindsay Living and Elle Enchanted
Snappy Casual and Chasing Davies
Leaving the House in This and Sweet Laundry
Coffee and a Cardigan and Inner Cupcake
Stumble into Style and Image Envy
Miss Vinyl Ahoy and Ordinarily Urbane and Lori's Wardrobe

Saturday, March 19, 2011

SXSW Japan Tsunami & Earthquake Relief

There's still 4 hours left (it ends at midnight Central) to tune in to the telethon happening at, which was organized by Hanson at the SXSW festival.  Over 30 artists have already stopped in to sing on the telethon and encourage people to donate money. 

Hanson has been actively involved in raising money for Africa for years, so it's no surprise that they felt compelled to pull together this elaborate 12-hour event in just 36 hours. 

Not only am I very proud to be a Hanson fan right now, I was also moved when I heard that the company I work for donated $1 million to the relief efforts.

The ridiculously easiest way to donate is to text REDCROSS to 90999, which just adds $10 to your next phone bill.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Paddy's Day Edition of Awkward and Awesome

Happy St. Paddy's Day! I am not Irish, but I am told that everyone is Irish on St. Paddy's Day. So that's as good of a reason as any to wear green and drink beer today! Both of which I will be doing in the comfort of my own home tonight.

We kind of matched today with our gray shirts and green tights/pants.

  • Being concerned about jaywalking and walking all the way to the corner to cross the street.  There was a cop nearby, but come on.  It's St. Paddy's Day.  He's looking for drunks, not people in business attire getting their morning coffee.
  • What my evening has in store for me: it's my turn to pick up dog poop, and the snow just recently melted, so it's going to be a mess.  
  • Randomly saying hi to someone as I'm walking by his desk, then he abruptly turns back around, so I mumble something and scurry off.  Really any unplanned encounter generally sends me into awkward mode.
  • Almost awkward: nearly angering the Irish by spelling it "St. Patty's" until I saw Paddy, Not Patty.  After reading that, I went through this post again and corrected my mistakes.  It looks wrong to me, but I don't make the rules--I just follow them.  Probably should've just stuck with St. Patrick's and called it a day.
  • Tugging at my skirt throughout the day because I keep thinking it's a little too short. 
  • Tripping in the infant room at daycare.  Luckily, I wasn't holding my daughter at the time, and I didn't actually fall.
  • My husband dropping two different forks on the floor when he was trying to get dinner ready. 

    • Green tights.  At least today.  Any other day, I feel too out of place wearing colored tights to work.
    • The Tripel Karmeliet beer I bought tonight.  It's probably my favorite beer although it's Belgian, not Irish.
    • Irish accents.  The morning show I listen to was broadcasting from the Jameson Distillery in Dublin today, so they were talking to someone who works there.
    • Obviously, the warm weather we've been having.  I think it's going to be back in the 40s tomorrow, though.  Lame. 
    • Doing a model walk down the hall when there's nobody around.  Also, posing in the bathroom mirror.  Either of which could quickly turn awkward.
    • Enjoying samples at a grocery store.  And then buying something as a result of trying a sample (which is how my Irish Stout cheese purchase came to be).
    • Noticing someone else having an awkward moment, like a lady at the grocery store accidentally ramming her cart into the checkout lane.
    Check out everybody else's awkward and awesome moments.

    Wednesday, March 16, 2011

    America's Next Top Model Cycle 16 Episode 4 Recap

    Recording the vlog went SO MUCH smoother this week thanks to the friendly folks at VODBurner.  They saw my post on Twitter and gave me suggestions to be more successful with recording the second time around.  Although I look like a complete dork with my headphones on, it did make all the difference.  No more echos and much less lag than last time. 

    I also want to give a shoutout to Gracey at Fashion for Giants because I totally used her scarf tying technique for my vlog accessorizing today.

    Over the Shoulder

    Skirt and Shirt: New York & Company; Vest: Don't remember; Shoes: Target; Belt: Kohl's (from another shirt)

    You only get to see the back side of my outfit today because I liked it better than the front. Plus, over the shoulder shots are fun-ish. So as you can see, my legs are bare today! Sorry for blinding you, people of Milwaukee and blog readers. I'm not sure if 50° really justifies bare legs. Eh, what am I saying? In Wisconsin, people start wearing shorts when it hits 40°.

    Anyway, I wanted to wear this skirt today, so the whole outfit came together from it. After much thought and trying on two or three other shirts, I picked this button-up (or button-down, depending on who you ask) to wear on top. I thought it looked too plain, though, so I put on this gray drapey vest. That was too casual, though, so I tried belting it and finally found a look I could live with. I like the fitted vest look, and the crocheted part in the back makes it more fun. To think, when vests first came on the trendy scene years ago, they were one of those things I said I would never wear. Like leggings. And probably half a dozen other things I now wear all the time.

    I'm off to change out of the biz-casz wear and take a walk with kiddo and pooch now. Stay tuned for the ANTM vlog later tonight! I got some technical help from Vodburner (who has great customer service, by the way), so hopefully everything will come together nicely.

    Tuesday, March 15, 2011

    What to Wear to a Hanson Concert

    Update 10/10/13: Looking for what to wear to a Hanson concert? Find more ideas in my new post, Four Stylish Concert Outfit Ideas.

    You may never plan on actually going to a Hanson concert, but you should.  They're very good, and I'm not just saying that.  When I heard that they were coming to Milwaukee for a promo show, one of my first reactions (after grinning idiotically for the rest of the day) was, what am I going to wear?  You have to win tickets to this show, so I may not even be going, but still.  It's worth pondering.

    I don't think it would be an incredibly bold statement for me to say that 90% of people at these shows wear jeans.  My friends and I have worn skirts in the past, and you'll see leggings occasionally, but it's mostly jeans.    Here are some looks:

    For the fan who wants to strike up an intellectual conversation with them about some cool band/instrument/charity.

    For the fan who still thinks she's going to get with them even though they're all happily married.

    For the fan who still makes her own shirt.

    Fan 3

    Fan 3 by ritzgrrl featuring denim jeans

    For the fan who wants to dress like Hanson.

    For the veteran fan who knows it all. (This fan is hard to categorize, but I would say she wants to look cute because everyone knows who she is, even Hanson.  Plus, she's there to hang out and reconnect with friends more than to see the show.)

    Did I forget any?

    I admit it, I've been all of these types of fans at one time or another.  So if you're offended, I'm only mocking myself in my younger years.

    So what am I going to wear?  I have absolutely no idea.  Something already in my closet, for sure, as I currently don't have money for a new outfit.  Sad face.

    Monday, March 14, 2011

    Wandering through the Weekend

    As I said in my last post (salmon vodka, anyone?), Friday night, Nate had a couple friends over to play Axis and Allies.

    I spent my night doing laundry, catching up on shows, and killing time online.  One of the more fun things I found was from a post on Keep Warm about Jeff Silverman, a company that lets you design your own shoe.  I'm not a big shoe person, but that's because I can never find something I really like or can justify buying.   I probably spent a couple hours Friday night and Saturday morning (while watching the Kardashians) designing the perfect yellow wedge.  Next time I have money, I'm totally buying it.  I'll have to do a post about it later if I actually have it made.

    I also found out that my grandmother booked their timeshare for a friend and me to use while we're in Orlando Memorial Day weekend.  We'll be staying at the Wyndam Bonnet Creek Resort and hitting up the new Harry Potter attraction at Universal Islands of Adventure, among other things.  I'm soooo excited!

    Saturday afternoon, I headed to Lindsey of PsychoBabble's son's 1st birthday party, which was Dr. Seuss themed.  Although Stephen didn't care much for opening presents, it was so cute watching him eat his cake.  By the end of it, he looked like Santa Claus with a frosting beard.  He's adorable!

    By the time I got home, a few friends were over for Nate's birthday weekend celebration part two.  We all enjoyed some amazing wine and pizza while playing cribbage and Sequence.  And since we were playing games, there were more than a few times when we quoted Charlie Sheen..."duh, winning."

    I started off Sunday trekking to a wooded park area near home for an outfit shoot.  My husband mocked me for taking my own pictures, but I had fun, so whatevs.  I'm doing a guest post sometime in the next week or so, so I wanted my pictures to be better than usual for that.  Although it was kind of awkward stomping through the snow in heeled boots, it was sunny and warm (OK, only 35°), so it was pleasant.

    After that, Bridget and I headed to my parents' to hang out for awhile since my mom was missing her grandbaby.  The sunny hour drive over and back was very relaxing.  While I was there, my mom and I spent the whole time playing with Bridget while watching a Sister Wives marathon.

    And now it's Monday.

    I ordered the necklace I'm wearing from Peace Republic Clothing, received it on Saturday, and was excited to wear it today.  Cute, yes?  I paired it with my Rodarte for Target cardigan and a plain white tee (not to be confused with the Plain White T's.  Bah dum CHING.).

    Friday, March 11, 2011

    Mmm, Fishy

    This weekend is my husband's 31st birthday.  Tonight, he invited two of his friends over to nerd it up and play some Axis and Allies.  One of his friends brought over smoked salmon vodka to make bloody marys.  Besides it being actually salmon colored, I didn't find it terribly fishy.  It reminded me more of beef sticks, making the bloody mary taste slightly smoky and more than slightly meaty.  I much prefer bloody marys with pepper vodka with the beef on the side in stick form.

    Speaking of flavored vodkas, sweet tea vodka is sooooo gooooood.  I don't know if you can get it up here, but I'm sure it's very common in the south.  I could drink that stuff straight.  In moderation, of course.  Wink.

    Time Is on My Side, Yes It Is (except it's not)

    Spending some quality time with the pooch and baby
     Get in on the Fashion Beauty Friend Friday (FBFF) action.

    1. When it comes to prioritizing your life, in what place does blogging fall?  Blogging falls shortly after working, at the same level as watching TV, and sometimes before sleeping if I'm trying to finish something up.  I think it goes without saying that spending time with family and friends comes first. My husband may say otherwise, but really the only time I blog when he's around is when he's busy watching one of his shows. So there. Heh.
    2. We all wish we had more free time to dedicate to blogging and all it entails. What are your tricks for taking advantage of the time you do have to be as productive as possible?  I do most of my blogging at work.  That may sound bad, but as an editor, I'm staring at a computer screen all day, reading some pretty heavy material, so sometimes I need a break.
    3. Have you discovered any short-cuts that makes blogging easier or more time efficient?  I've tried scheduling posts, but for some reason, it's never really worked for me. 
    4. Do you have an editorial calendar or something similar that helps you plan ahead?  The only things I do on a regular basis are these FBFF posts and my weekly America's Next Top Model vlogs.  We get the FBFF topics ahead of time, so those are easy to plan for and work on throughout the week.  The vlog is by far the most time-consuming post, but it's also something I can't work on ahead of time.  I don't write about anything else consistently.  I'll post an outfit if the mood strikes, or I'll write about some show I watched, or I'll brag about my cute daughter (or lament about her not sleeping enough).
    5. If time wasn’t an issue what you would be doing on your blog/for your blog that you aren’t doing now? I would network more with both mom bloggers and style bloggers and try to get more artsy with my photography.  Although I used to be in the web design field, I don't really have any desire to create my own blog design, but I would probably somehow acquire a more personalized look to my blog as well.  I would also take the time to find more of a voice and an identity.  Uniqueness is what makes a blog special, and it's something I need to discover and settle into as I keep writing.

    Thursday, March 10, 2011

    America's Next Top Model Cycle 16 Episode 3 Recap - Makeovers!

    Today's vlog was definitely a labor of love.  Mostly a love of makeovers.  Since Sabreen and I weren't able to get together, I found a program (VodBurner) that would allow us to record ourselves Skyping.  I downloaded a 14 day trial, and we were off.

    After 15 minutes of yapping about the show, I got an error message and had to hang up the call and try again.  The video saved, processed, and loaded itself into the post-production editing tool.  Neat!  When I played back the video, Sabreen's side was echoing.  Had I been smart, I would've gone straight to the website for help.  But I like troubleshooting things myself, so I adjusted my microphone and speaker volume down, and we started over.  This only succeeded in making my voice a lot quieter while Sabreen's stayed the same...and still echo-y. 

    Finally, I turned to the site and found advice on how to try to fix it in post-production.  But no promises that it would actually work.  It seemed to work while I was editing in the console; but once I generated the video, the echo came back although not as bad as it originally was.

    Sigh.  The advice on the website says to move the speakers so that they're not near the microphone or use headphones.  Now I know.  Anyway, onto the recap if you can make it through the whole thing!

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    We Had a Good Time

    Well, we were a little tired, but we had fun getting free samples of sweet treats and yummy adult beverages all night!

    Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    Time to Distract You with My Polka Dots

    Cardigan: Target; T-shirt: Target, Pants: New York & Company; Scarf: Last year's Ladies Night Out event; Belt: Luci Boutique
    I'm trying to distract you from my sleepy, non-made-up face with my polka dot cardigan and bright pink scarf.  I've been sick the last two days, but Everybody Everywear's Polka Dot day at least made me a little excited to get dressed this morning. I would've waited until I got home to take these pictures, but I wasn't sure if I'd have time, so I give you my bathroom at work.  I am one classy individual, I know.

    When I decided I wanted to participate in the Polka Dot theme, I quickly realized that I don't actually own any polka dotted items of clothing.  I have one headband, which I haven't worn in years, and one pair of socks, which I actually am wearing under my boots today.  Target to save the day!  I found this cardigan on clearance for $5.  Woohoo! 

    I get that the scarf doesn't exactly go with the cardigan, but I have a good reason for that.  I got this scarf last year at a ladies night shopping event in the cute Wisconsin town I call home.  Tonight is the third annual ladies night event, so I wanted to wear the scarf since I'm going again this year.  Plus, I kinda liked how it created a faux tie blouse look.  By the time I got to work, I did take the scarf off right before I walked into the building.  I get self-conscious if I wear more than one color at work because I feel as if I stick out way too much then.  Here's how I actually wore the outfit today.

    Come to think of it, I'm not sure I like the belt with this either, so I'm gonna take that off, too.  I'll put the scarf on again after work and change into jeans for my night out.

    Friday, March 4, 2011

    Happy Grammar Day!

    As an editor and a long-time lover of language, I was pretty excited to learn that today is National Grammar Day.  I had aspirations of doing a fun video with prepositions, but with a kid and life in general, that just didn't happen.  Check out some Grammar Day fun posted by Grammar Girl.

    Favorite Beauty Products

    My awesomest (if that were a word) beauty look from when I was a giraffe in my friend's cosmetology school fashion show

    Get in on the Fashion Beauty Friend Friday (FBFF) action.

    1. What's your favorite drug store makeup product and your favorite higher-end product? I don't spend a lot of money on makeup, so I can't name a higher-end product I like.  As far as drug store makeup, probably Neutrogena MoistureShine Gloss.  I don't know if that link is the exact type of Neutrogena lip gloss I have, but I've bought a lot of lip products in my life and hated them all.  That lip gloss and my Bare Escentuals Buxom lip gloss are the only ones I've consistently used.

    2. Is there one type of product that is your go-to, can't live without? Carmex.  It's the only thing I wear every day of my life, no matter what I'm doing.  I'll sometimes go days without makeup, but I won't go days without lip balm.

    3. What's the best hair product you've ever used? As low maintenance as I am with my makeup, I'm even lower maintenance with my hair.  I have tried a variety of volumizing products on my hair, though.  I don't know that any of them really work, but I s'pose I did kind of like using the Big Sexy Hair products.

    4. Fess up, what's the worst beauty look you've tried to rock and look back at now with a little shame or apprehension that you actually did that? Tiger stripes in my hair in 2003.  I don't blame my friend who put the blond streaks in my hair because it actually didn't look bad, and a lot of people were doing it at the time.  Except for maybe the one big chunk of blond by my ear that we called my skunk, haha.  Up until then, though, I had never colored my hair, so I do kinda regret starting.  Especially since I did it for a guy who I thought liked blondes (who later married a brunette, haha).  It got worse when I dyed my hair all blond a few weeks later.  Does color from a box ever turn out the way you want it to?  Every time I color my hair now (professionally only!), I kinda wish it was back to its natural color.

    5. When it comes to beauty products, we all use the same basic products. What do you use that helps show off your personal flare and personality? Purple eye shadow?  For probably a year straight, I always wore purple eye shadow with either black or brown liner, depending on my outfit.  Recently, I switched to like an apricot color on my lids, and I just don't feel like me when I wear it.

    Thursday, March 3, 2011


    What's with this hair??

    • These weird wispy bang things I have.  What are they??  All I know is I didn't put them there, but they've been there forever, and they never cooperate.   
    • My parking situation.  Let's review, shall we?  Monday, I forgot my keys at my desk and didn't realize it until I walked the 8 minutes to my car.  Tuesday, I parked in a different structure for the first time, and it took me 10 minutes to find my car.  Wednesday, I turned too soon and ran into construction.  Today, I missed my turn to get on the freeway and turned back around after a half mile.  Tomorrow, I'm going to get it down, dangit!
    • Minimizing windows on my computer when someone walks by at work.  No one who works on a computer actually spends all day working, so no one would care if I'm taking a break.  But still I minimize. 
    • Walking in heels.  At least, it often gets awkward for me, like when my ankle suddenly turns as I'm walking, and I just hope no one saw.
    • Feeling like I was stealing ice cream sandwiches at the grocery store today.  I accidentally grabbed an open box, so I told the dude at the self checkout lane that I needed a new box.  Since I had the baby with me, he suggested I finish scanning everything, then go back for the ice cream sandwiches.  Well, when I went back, the kind I wanted was gone, so I sat there conflicted for a minute.  Then, I grabbed a different variety and wandered out of the store, hoping no alarms would go off although I did pay for the merchandise.
    • Hearing my cube neighbor talk to another coworker about knee socks in the 90s and wondering if they realized that I was wearing knee socks today.

    Yellow knee socks--both awkward and awesome.

    • Hearing "Peace of Mind" by Boston on the radio and belting out the chorus as I drive home from work. 
    • Wearing glasses to hide the fact that I didn't put any eye makeup on.
    • My daughter smiling at me when I picked her up from daycare.
    • The Ask section on Polyvore.  Potentially hours of fun.
    • New Milano cookies.  Soooooo goooooood!  I can't find a link or picture of them, but the chocolate in the middle is creamy.  I ate a whole bag of them last night *hangs head in shame*.
    • Dance Central!  I miss playing it.  I'll have to do that more often.
    Check out everybody else's awkward and awesome moments.

    Wednesday, March 2, 2011

    America's Next Top Model Cycle 16 Episode 2 Recap

    If this vlog seems rushed, that's because it was.  Haha.  The episode itself wasn't terribly exciting, and Sabreen needed to get home at a decent hour tonight, but we still had some fun with it.  And next week promises to be exciting because it's MAKEOVER WEEK!  Those are always fun.  Anyway, onto our recap.

    Daycare Days 1 and 2

    Another pic taken by sis-in-law

    First of all, thank you, friends with baby experience, for your insight on my last post about Bridget and her lack of sleep.  I'm definitely starting to realize that every day is something new; and just because she's really happy one day, doesn't mean she will be happy the next day.  Or even the next minute.

    I promise I won't write about daycare every day, but this was significant because Bridget's first two days of daycare were polar opposites of each other.

    Day 1: Happy Day.  Her daily report card showed that she was happy all day but that the only thing wrong was that any loud noise startled her.  Even when we got her home, she was completely content and smiled at Nate and played in her jumperoo while I made dinner.  (It all sounds very domestic and idyllic, but the meal was Tuna Helper, so don't give me too much credit, haha.)

    Day 2: Fussy Day.  The day seemed to start off OK, so I was expecting more glowing reviews when I picked Bridge up from daycare.  Not so much.  Maybe it was in part because of her sleeplessness the night before, but Bridget apparently had been fussy all day.  Every time any baby started crying, she would start, too.  She didn't like the noise in the room at all, and she had only eaten 4 oz. of formula since she got there.  That alone was concerning to me, but the lady assured me that often there's an adjustment period, and I shouldn't be too concerned.

    I had to stop at Target, and Bridget was an angel the whole time and mostly just slept.  Throughout the night, she alternated gurgling happily to herself and bawling her eyes out, but she still didn't eat much at all.  Nate had some trouble getting her to go to sleep, so I took over, threw some music on, and she was out.

    Even though she seemed to be coughing and sneezing more than usual, she slept so much better than Monday night.  At that point, she was probably just so exhausted that she finally had a chance to catch up on some sleep.

    Day 3: Yet to be seen.  This morning, she was smiley as usual and chugged down 3.5 oz of formula.  Actually maybe it was 2.5...I didn't check the bottle beforehand.  The car ride must've left her pretty sleepy because she didn't fuss at all when I moved her from her car seat to a little rocker chair thing at daycare.  So we'll see how today goes!

    The reason I mentioned the coughing and sneezing is because Nate just came down with a cold and is home today with a bad sore throat and headache.  So hopefully Bridget doesn't catch whatever he has.  I had to get Bridget ready by myself this morning since Nate was resting, and it was even harder getting out the door on time.  Another shout out to single parents--I don't know how you do it, and you amaze and bewilder me.

    Charlie Sheen Way Back When

    Listening to Charlie Sheen and all of his crazy one-liners is hilarious and makes me shake my head, but ya wanna know the real tragedy for me? Now I'll never be able to watch one of my favorite movies from childhood again - Courage Mountain: Heidi's New Adventure - without thinking of his current antics.

    (Embedding was disabled for this video on youtube, so you can click the movie poster to watch the trailer.)

    Tuesday, March 1, 2011

    Outfit Inspiration Fun

    Wow this was fun.  I could see how someone could waste hours on this site.  I've seen stuff like this done on some blogs, but I wasn't inspired to start my own until this morning.

    On my way to work, I called into a local radio station to try to win tickets to the third Chicago NKOTBSB show that was announced.  I can't even go to the show, by the way (Plus, I'm already going to the June 18 show.); I just wanted to see if I could win.  Then I started thinking about what one would wear to one of these shows and how I could blog about it, and I thought of Polyvore.  Another cool thing I noticed you can do on Polyvore besides build outfits is interior design, for those of you who are into that (ahem, Mrs. T).

    Although the majority of the guys in the NKOTB and Backstreet Boys are either married or gay (OK, so there's only one gay guy), I still think going a little scandalous in the outfit would be completely apropos.  They're in order from least dressy to dressiest.