THANK. GOODNESS. There are only a few hours left in 2015 and I couldn't possibly be more stoked about that. I recall saying I had "a good feeling" about this past year before it even began. Boy, was I wrong. It wasn't horrible (actually, yeah it kinda was.) but in 2016, I can do better. I'm stepping up my goal game. It's time to get real.
I like to reserve the term "magical" for only truly spectacular people, places, or things. Outside of my beloved Walt Disney World, I've probably only used the term a handful of times. Having said that, my wedding was pretty magical and our first look was no exception. Originally we were planning on getting married Thursday so I could carry my dress around and take photos in front of all the places we planned to visit. Mother Nature can be cruel sometimes though and we ended up having to push the wedding back, which meant I'd be heading to Jökulsárlón without a dress. After talking it over a bit with B, we decided to pack it along anyway-- you know-- just in case. I think we made the right decision. Photos by Violet Short.
This unseasonably warm weather gave me a reason to toss my insecurities aside and show off my legs for Christmas Eve. My dad's side of the family still has the traditional Feast of the Seven Fishes. It's the perfect excuse to dress up before eventually ditching the fancypants getup and changing into my Christmas PJ's. It's the best of both worlds, no?
What good are goals if we don't revisit them to see how we measure up once in a while? I make a list every year, take my objectives to heart, then intentionally don't look at the list again until the end of the year. After taking a look at my list from last year, I thought long and hard about how I did. I did overwhelmingly "okay."
This year is almost over and all I have to say is "good riddance." I can't wait to ring in the new year like I've never rang in the new year before. (Except I'll be working overnight... so I'll be doing it from my desk.) I was kind of bummed about not being able to dress up for NYE so it was kismet when Chloe Johnston asked me to put together some looks, I was all in.
Ah, Ghent. My favorite place. As soon as B and I stepped off the train from Brussels, I felt like I was home. You know how there are some people or places you feel instantly bonded to? That's how I was with this city. I'm full of sighs just thinking about it. I wish I could jump through my computer screen and into these photos.
I have a confession to make: I've been listening to Christmas music since October. Yes, before Halloween. I was having a particularly crappy day and I did it just to cheer up but it didn't stop there. I just kept listening and listening and guess what? Despite what you may think about listening to Christmas music pre-Thanksgiving, I haven't gotten tired of it yet. Now that there are only two more weekends before Christmas, I figured I'd share my playlist with you.
Last year, my family swore off of buying gifts for each other. It was a great decision and helps to de-stress around the holidays because family gifts are the hardest ones to find. (I mean, for the woman who carried you in her womb for 9 months, does a candle really suffice?) Now that I'm getting a little older and friendships are more meaningful, I've had a hard time coming up with gift ideas for them. And of course with office politics and all, you have to buy a little something for your work BFF, your boss, your work husband... the list goes on and on and viola, Christmas gets kinda stressy again. When the folks over at UncommonGoods asked me to make a gift list, I had so much fun browsing around their site. There were some gifts I saw and immediately thought specific people to give them to.
Yesterday was the first actual cold December day here in Philadelphia. After finishing my work, Danielle and I headed to Queen Village to grab some lattes at Ox Coffee, my new favorite little java jawn. (JAWN.) I figured it was the perfect time to put on a cozy sweater and show off my Victoria Emerson wrap bracelet.
If I could find a job in Ghent, I would move there in a heartbeat. It is, without a doubt, my favorite place I've ever been. I loved it so much that I spent the smallest amount of time getting ready in the morning, just so I could get out and explore it more. What you're seeing here is the fruit of that struggle.
I don't get to South Philly a lot but when I do, it almost always includes a trip to Grindcore House for a gluten free bagel and a Yerba Mate Latte. It's this great little vegan coffee shop on a quiet corner. If you're local, you should definitely check it out.
Brenden and I loved Belgium. We started out by spending a couple of days in Brussels, which is an incredibly lively city full of beautiful old architecture and GREAT food. We felt so welcome there, it didn't feel like a foreign country at all. If you want to experience European hospitality at its finest, take a jet over to Belgium. For real.
We kept our honeymoon pretty casual-- not a whole lot of "blog-worthiness" going on there. I did, however, feel cute and cozy in this blanket scarf-turned-wrap so we took some photos on the way back from breakfast in Brussels.
Today was my first day back to work. It was-- well-- let's just say I've had a few strong alcoholic beverages since I got home. No worries though, having a bummer of a shift gave me the best reason so dive back into my Iceland pictures. I realized that I didn't take nearly as many photos as I thought but that goes to show how much fun I was having. Here are the few snapshots I have from the rest of our time in Iceland.
I'm getting a little weepy-eyed going through these photos from the trip. We just got back and we only left two weeks ago but I still miss it so much! Iceland is so stunning. We kinda want to move there. (Not kidding.) I didn't take a ton of photos on the trip because I was busy doing other things but I did manage to snap a few to share with you guys. We spent our first and some of our last day wandering around Reykjavík.
Heya! Long time, no talk, eh? Haven't had much time to do blog things, I've been off exploring Iceland and getting married-- you know-- casually. (Check out some photos here. Don't worry. There will be plenty more very soon.) I'm in Brussels at the moment, cuddling with my new hubby and soaking in the sounds of nondescript street chatter from our 2nd floor flat. Goodness I love Europe! Since we're finally chilling for a moment, I figured I'd share some some photos I meant to post before we left for our trip.
If I had to describe what my go-to "uniform" is, it would undoubtedly be some variant of (blazer + stacked heel shoe) x black + statement necklace. Ever since I started being a lot more intentional about buying clothes, I've found that a black blazer is a must-have, along with a comfortable but classy shoe. If you have those things, the possibilities are endless.
I was never a fan of margaritas (too sweet) until I moved to Philly and tried the Watermelon Margarita from Dos Segundos. It was love at first sip. I then dabbled in the margarita arts, never quite finding a fruit and tequila combination that brought me the same amount of joy until I had my first sip of Mezcal in Nashville. Smoky, strong, and splendid. This cocktail is sort of an all-star lineup of my favorite flavors: watermelon, mint, ginger, and smoke.
"I'm gonna ask you a question, but you aren't going to like it. Are you a pagan? You got the outfit." A woman said that to me while we were taking these photos. I'm laughing about it now but it was an incredibly odd moment. Between her deadpan expression and seemingly genuine concern, it was one of the few rare moments I've been taken back to the point of absolute confusion-- speechless and confounded. I had no response and even now, no snide remarks. I'm still wondering what she meant though.
It's almost here! After Iceland and Belgium, we'll be heading over to Paris for a day and a half. It's not a lot of time but it's enough to explore a bit. It's been a while since I've been there and I feel like I have to start planning my Paris outfits. (As well as brushing up on my French, alors...) Parisian fashion truly next level. It's effortlessly chic... or at least appears to be. I'll try my best to not stick out like the American sore thumb I am. Here's my inspiration!
Temple University's Fashion and Business school asked me to come to one of their meetings as a guest speaker. As soon as I sent that "YES!" email, I started digging in my closet to find an adequate ensemble. I mean, these are fashionable students. The bar is high. I tried to go edgy... and realized I just looked like Steve Buscemi in 30 Rock. (Those few years between me and the college crowd are starting to get a little noticeable.) I tried "fancy, but not too fancy" and ended up just looking like a sad bridesmaid. I decided to go with a classic E.M. outfit-- because you really can't beat the classics. I got dressed and headed out only a few minutes late. The outfit was the least of my worries though... it was time to get over my biggest fear: Public. Speaking.
I turned 24 this weekend. (Remember?) B took me to dinner at one of my favorite joints, I spent Saturday with my family in Bucks County, and I had lots and lots of puppy cuddles. It was a dream come true. I didn't realize this until I was putting on this dress before we left for dinner Friday night but I haven't had a good reason to dress up in so long! It's a lot of fun... and I think I need to do it more often. (Even if I don't have a good reason.)
A few years ago, when I turned 21, I decided to write a letter to my 16-year-old self. The fact that it exists on the internet makes me cringe... so I don't know why I'm bringing up up again. (But who doesn't love some self-deprecating humor... if that's what this could even be called?) When I wrote it, I felt like 16-year-old me could learn a lot from almost-21-year-old me. Now, it feels like the other way around. The past three years have gone by so quickly and have been so tumultuous.. I figured it was only best to write a little follow-up.
Albert Camus once said, “Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower." He was so right-- it's just as beautiful but kinda different. Fall makes me feel a certain way. In a rare moment, I had the house to myself last night. I sat in the living room with the window open, reading a a book about economics, sipping on some tea with whiskey and for that brief time, I felt okay. I was happy, I hadn't a care in the world. (Which is saying a lot... but we can talk about that later.) Since I haven't shared a playlist with you guys in a while, I figured I'd share the music I was listening to last night in my moment of Autumn bliss-- plus some more. I don't really know what these songs have to actually do with fall except for my strange connection with the season. Basically, these songs put to music all of the feels I get from Autumn.
The weather here in Philly has been wonderful. It's that perfect time of year when it's cold enough to wear boots... but Spruce Street Harbor Park is still open. It's a perfect instance of summer and fall harmoniously blending into one another-- and I'm not planning on wasting a single moment of it.
I always talk about how much I love First Fridays. To be fair though, what's not to love about them? There's free booze, a reason to browse through art galleries, and prime people-watching. I always feel like I need to step up my outfit game for First Friday because the Philly's most fashionable all emerge and descend upon Old City for the occasion.
I love me some Etsy. Whenever I need to find something extremely specific, (and often highly improbable) it never lets me down. I mean... where else could you find a ring with Nicolas Cage's face on it? I've been browsing a lot because it's time for me to buy some wedding bands but I apparently lack the self-control to not fall down the Etsy rabbit hole. Here are some of my favorite things I've discovered during this free fall.
Ah, Saturday mornings. Ah, late summer. I cherish these times. I don't get to Rittenhouse Square much in the height (and heat) of summer but once September hits and those brisk late-summer breezes start flowing, it's my favorite place. If you're one for local produce, fancy baked goodies, and fresh blooms there's a really great farmer's market every weekend that's absolutely worth checking out. This weekend, I made my own bouquet, which I triumphantly toted around the square. (And on a little coffee date with my bestie.)
Fall makes for such typical blog fodder. Everybody loves it and it's just so Instagrammable. The moody hues, the oversized scarves, the hand-warming hot beverages... it's disgustingly picturesque. I know it gets played out very quickly so I'm going to try to get my "OMG AUTUMN!" posts out of the way early on. With (allegedly) millions flocking to Philly in a few short weeks to say "hello" to Pope Francis when he stops by, I figured I'd make a mini list of some of my favorite fall(ish) activities. This is by no means an all-inclusive list so be sure to keep checking back!
Can I let you guys in on a little secret? I really, really hate having my picture taken. More often than not, I'll be really feeling myself and decide to take blog pictures... only to be horribly disappointed when I see what I actually look like. It wasn't until recently that I started getting the hang of posing for pictures. (It being a necessary evil for fashion blogging and all.) Since I know I can't be the only one struggling here, I've got some tips.
We had a wedding in Newport, Rhode Island this weekend so of course we went out exploring when all the festivities were done. If you've never been, it's an incredibly adorable town and I suggest stopping by if you're within a reasonable distance. We wandered around a bit and settled on a super crunchy hippie breakfast place. One of the best parts about staying in a beach town is that you can dress like you're on the beach... even when you're not! That means you can do some serious multitasking: yes. I'm talking about getting a tan while you're eating brunch. What a time to be alive.
I really love cucumbers. A perfect Friday evening for me would involve Curb Your Enthusiasm, cucumbers and tahini, and red wine. I was never a fan of Sangria until some of my friends over at Kit and Ace made a dreamy white wine and peach sangria for First Friday a few weeks ago. I felt the earth move under my feet. (Okay, maybe not but it was still amazing.) I started looking for recipes with cucumbers and red wine and couldn't find any-- at all! So, of course, I decided to just make my own.
I'm usually the one schlepping around the wedding reception in black denim, a black shirt, and comfy shoes. Not this particular day. I was dressed in all my wedding dress glory. LBD, fancy-schmancy up-do, sparkly clutch, and some very uncomfortable shoes. Very uncomfortable. But I felt good and I think I looked pretty classy.
Happy Wednesday! Can you guys believe August is almost over? I can't... this year is going by so quickly. Is this just all part of getting old? Hopefully not. Because I kinda hate it. Anyway, I thought I would share some links with you guys since I haven't in a while.
One of my favorite spots in Philadelphia is the Piazza at Schmidt's. (Or if you wanna sound like a local, just "The Piazza.") It can get a little out of hand after dark on the weekends but it's perfect for people-watching and has some great food and drink options. I needed a reason to get dressed up so we took the doggies on a little date... and of course snapped some photos.
Watermelon is one of the simplest joys in life. It is perfect in every way yet somehow made even better by mint. I love grilled watermelon but seeing as I live in a tiny apartment with no grill... I decided to compromise. I was not disappointed.
A simple derailment in a breakfast conversation changed the course of my Monday. My Tuesday. My Wednesday. My week. My month, maybe (probably) more? Growing up is hard. We've discussed this. I've parted ways with just about everybody I've ever known. It's rarely been amicable, but for those cherished souls who sort of flickered faded away without some violent fanfare, they're tucked away into an everlasting corner of my heart. We're living in different cities, time zones, coasts, counties. We rarely speak. Not for any specific reason other than the fact that we just don't. We go on with our lives. We chase our dreams, we try to make our way in the world without ending up loathing ourselves entirely, and someday, we will die. Some pass on sooner than others. When it happens, it's tragic. It's inevitable. But that doesn't make it any better.
- ► 2016 (96)
- ▼ December 2015 (12)
- ► November 2015 (10)
- ► October 2015 (10)
- ► September 2015 (10)
- ► August 2015 (8)
- ► 2014 (161)
- ► 2013 (183)