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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Heavens To Etsy [No.1]

I remember when I first heard about Etsy from a Ph.D student I was working with in the research lab during my undergraduate work.  Since then, I can often be found hunting for hidden treasures on the website and some of my most favorite purchases have been found there. I must say, chickadees, there is something snazzy about finding a good quality product made by a small business.  Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside to know that my purchases for either myself or my dearest friends and fam-bam were made with love. In starting this new series, I thought that I would kick off a few shops that I have ordered from multiple times and could not be more pleased with their products and customer service! 

[saracarr]: Not gonna lie, this shop gives me instant baby fever! Oh hey, you love Bob the bear and his happy hued yellow glasses? It's gonna cost you a baby! Maybe some day but for now I will just happily purchase them for my mommy friends. In case you were curious, pals, this shop is probably my most favorite on Etsy!

[littlelow]: This shop has some of my favorite cards! Whenever I am in need of a fix for the perfect card, I know that I can always count on this shop to pull through.  I love the cheeky yet vintage feel to this shop! I may or may not be tempted to keep some of these cards and to display on my desk at work! Can you blame a gal?

[ScoutandLilly]:  Scout & Lilly is a small shop that carries modern accessories. I am smitten with their small leather goods and whimsy banners.  I think they would be adorable in my speech room! So much better than those inspirational Garfield posters my teachers hung up in my classrooms when I was growing up! Wouldn't you agree? Yikes!

[notTuesday]: They have the most darling necklaces and fab color combos. They especially pair well with a striped t-shirt for all of you gal pals who are smitten with stripes, like me! 

So what are some of your favorite Etsy shops? Are there any that you just cannot live without? I cannot wait to share more of my favorites soon! Stay tuned, chickadees!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Snap Happy

Instagram is my jam so I thought that I would share a few photos of what's been 'grammin, chickadees! Of course there have been plenty o' things that have tickled my fancy as of late that I don't always snap with my camera lens [like a trip to a vineyard for a dinner date with my little sister], but that is for another day! In the meantime, take a peek! 

My honeybee surprised me by ordering me a new hooded trench in my favorite hue! 

My best gal pal is expecting her first little one and we recently celebrated at her baby shower! Did I mention that I'm the Godmother? Eek! I'm so honored + excited!

The amount of friends [old + new] that have reached out to me since my dad passed away has been overwhelming, comforting, and heartbreaking all at the same time. Some days are easier than others but I cherish each word of encouragement that I receive. A little love goes a long way, y'all. Time to start the Happiness Project! 

Isn't it lovely to find an old pair of shoes that you forgot you had after a long winter? #yesyesyall! I thought they were swell with my snazzy new tote!

My Saturdays usually call for an early workout + a strong cup of coffee to kick off the weekend! 

Spring cleaning was in full swing this past week as we said "Ciao!" to our heavy winter clothes and "Hello!" to our tank tops and shorts for our upcoming trip to Aruba! 

Friday, March 20, 2015

In The News

Happy Friday, chickadees! Who else cannot clack their heels fast enough to express their excitement for the weekend? Yippy skippy! I must admit, I have felt like I've been living under a rock these past couple of weeks. Just the other day, I thought that I would finally peruse around on the lovely world wide web and found two of my favorite glam jams under the tip of my nose! I decided my discoveries were too lovely to keep a secret from you gal pals!

First up is funny man Bill Murray: Let's be honest, this guy makes my side hurt. I just love his witty sense of humor in so many movies from my childhood and just glancing at his picture makes my heart skip a beat. He's the type of guy that I would want to spend an afternoon with binging on bad food and acting like eight year old kids. This week my badass yoga teacher [hey girl, hey!] posted a link about Bill Murray who held a press conference in 2014 after the screening of his film St. Vincent. During the press conference someone asked him the question, "What does it feel like to be you?" and his response was absolutely brilliant. Some may be quick to think that he responded with some quick or senseless response but to be honest, gal pals, it was deep. After all of the experiences I have had within the past year, I am really learning on being present. This three minute response hit the nail on the head. Learning and being content is all about being mindful of the present moment. 

Oh you lovely people, you know I just adore my gal Mrs. Iris Apfel.  If you read my blog on the daily, you already know that this adorable lady has completely stolen my heart and that she reminds me so much of my late grandmother. So, you can imagine how thrilled I was when I found out that her new documentary, What Would Iris Say, comes out in little over a month-April 29th to be exact! I have watched the new trailer at least ten times in the past couple of days and each time I squeal with excitement! I hope that I'm that sassy and glam when I am 93. I can just picture my honeybee and me now! Little love birds! Iris has had such a fascinating lifestyle and career that I am infatuated with. If you have a hot minute, you must watch trailer here! It's sure to make you smile!

"I don't have any rules 'cuz I would only be breaking them so it's a waste of time. " [Iris Apfel]

Happy weekend, dear chickadees! Hope your weekend is filled with sunshine and snuggles! Do you have any weekend plans for the sunny days ahead? Do share! I'm intrigued! 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Holy Swoon!

Hey there, chickadees! Happy Monday! I just wanted to thank y'all for for all of the love I received over the past week regarding my last post.  The comments and emails were enough to make me feel loved from all over and it is more appreciated than you even know.  Every day is a challenge but just know that I appreciate the encouragement.  It's been a hot minute since I have shared what has made me squeal "Holy Swoon!" so I thought that I would brighten your Monday blues up with this little batch of sunshine:

[Dulci Kitten Heels]: I don't always love a kitten heel but I am completely smitten with these! That bow? Perfect! Now since they are completely sold out in every size, where can I snag a pair for myself? Holy swoon!

[Art Print]: If you have been following along, you may or may not remember that I recently purchased a print from Emily Rickard. It is one of my most happy hued and loved prints in my office these days.  What can I say- I always pop a grin when I look up and see it above my desk. This one is another personal favorite of mine! I can't wait to see what else Emily has up her sleeve when her Etsy shop opens back up. If you just cannot wait chickadee, you can always pop on over to Society6 and swoon over her work like I do on the daily! No shame!

[Tippi Sweater]: If there is one thing this gal has as a staple piece in her closet [other than a gazillion button ups-yikes!], are tippi sweaters! Listen up, ladies! They are the bees knees! Perfect to layer, wear by itself, any time, any season! I love 'em! I keep coming back to this fancy marled citrus color. I can't help but to think that it might look a little snazzy when the sun shines and I am all sun-kissed! Add that one to my online cart? Done and done! 

[WWJLD?]: Yes, I am going to say it you love people- you NEED this tote! Am I right? Jenna Lyons makes my heart skip a beat! Her style is impeccable and she is quite the boss bitch, if you ask me! Blogger Robin Anderson has just launched a new tote bag company featuring a series entitled #bossbitch that celebrates women. Each tote that she launches is limited edition and will feature strong female icons like my gal pal Jenna Lyons [obvi!], Martha Stewart,  etc. I love everything about this and cannot wait to snatch one up for myself! 

[Tassel Key Ring]: A year or so ago, I purchased a leather tassel keychain from Kate Spade that was very similar to this beauty and I get stopped so often to ask where I purchased it. I just love the happy hues on this one and the gold patterned detail adds just the perfect touch! If you are on the hunt for a new keychain, look no further! I think this one has your name all over it, gal pal!

[Cotton Fille Bow Headband]: When I found out that Gap Kids and Kate Spade were launching a collaboration last year I couldn't contain my excitement. There is something special about Kate Spade and all of her bright whimsey-ness that leaves me weak in the knees. I loved every single piece from that collection, gal pals. Well, you can imagine my excitement when I stumbled across this adorable headband while perusing Kate Spade's website this weekend. Heavens to Betsy! Where in the world have I been and how did I not know that Kate Spade started carrying kids? This headband would be first on my must-have list. Don't even worry that I am childless. I'm pretty petite- this precious piece will fit me! At least that's what I keep tellin' myself, sister! Seriously too cute! Kate Spade gets it right every time! Speakin' of Kate Spade- Word on the street is that they are closing their Kate Spade Saturday stores. The Kate Spade line has always pulled the strings of my heart more so than the Saturday line but I still feel a little sad about this. Have any of you gal pals heard this news, too? Help a sister out! I'm quite curious!

[Fuchsia Nina Chair]: Not even kidding, I pin hot pink chairs like it's my job! Aren't they just the piece of sass and pizazz that you want to have to spruce up your little love nest? I may or may not have squealed out loud when I stumbled upon this pretty thing over the weekend. It has gotten fabulous reviews, ladies. I may need to hop on in to my local store to kick up my feet and give it a little whirl of my own! 

[Navy Striped Pillow]: When we purchased our new couch we ordered these striped pillows in navy and I am in heaven every time I lay my head down on them. Cute + functional? Too perfect for words! Navy stripes are my jam and I have them incorporated into almost every room of our little love nest. Sometimes I think I may be going overboard in the stripe world but then I stop myself. Too much stripe? Thats just silly, chickadees! 

Enjoy, you lovely people!  Now get out there and show Monday whatcha got! 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Day My Whole Life Changed

Two weeks ago, I was sitting at my computer working on my next blog post. It was 5:00 and I had just got home from work. My phone was dead and I thought it would be a perfect time for me to write down my bucket list for my upcoming birthday. You see, my birthday was three days later. I had all of these great ideas on what I wanted to accomplish and things that I wanted to do during the next year of my life- take up tennis, get my teaching certification in yoga, travel more. I'm sure that there were more of which I no longer remember, but at this moment of my life, it doesn't even matter. That's because on February 23rd, my whole world stopped.  

I am not going to spare you all with the details because to be frank, they are all too real and too raw and too personal to share. My life today is no where near what it was last week nor will it be what it is today, tomorrow, a week, or even a month from now. My life is forever changed. Two weeks ago, my dad died unexpectedly. It has been the most heartbreaking, surreal, and absolute worst experience of my life. 

To be honest with you, you won't even begin to understand how I am feeling unless you have ever been in my shoes, and I would never wish that upon anyone. You won't know what it's like to rush to the hospital two and half hours away and see your dad suffer due to something so unexpected or to sign a death certificate, or make decisions like what funeral home he needs to be sent to. You won't know what it's like to be in your twenties and have to make decisions on your father's funeral like what readings to be read or what hymns to sing. You won't know what it's like to be sitting in the funeral home with your twenty five year old sister and have to make choices like which casket to pick for your dad or whether or not you want his organs to be donated. You won't know what it's like to be having calling hours for your dad on your birthday and wishing that he was there to celebrate with you instead.  

I'm not telling you all of this out of self pity or attention, but because I want you to know that this is real life. Life is hard and it isn't always fair. One day you can be here and the next day, you can be gone. I still am having a hard time even wrapping my head around how I am feeling or coming to terms with the fact that he is gone. One minute I am doing fine and the next minute I can't stop crying. I'm telling you this because maybe you are like me and are trying to find comfort in your own loneliness. 

I have said it before and I will say it again: There is never a right time to lose a parent.  You can be twenty eight or sixty eight and it's still going to be the hardest moment of your life because it means that an entire chapter of your life is over and you have to start facing life on your own. That is the trouble with time, there is never enough. I truly believe that there is no amount of time that will prepare you for the grief that you will find. You will always want one more day, always ask yourself "what-if", and you will always ask yourself "why." I won't be able to pick up the phone to ask him how to make a special recipe or joke with him about something that happened when I was five. I have so many questions yet no answers and I sure as hell don't have it figured out. If anything, it's getting harder before it's getting better. So please excuse me if I am not always my witty or cheeky self in the coming months but this blog is a way for me to be authentic and true to who I am, sadness and all. In this moment, I am lost, I am heartbroken, and I am hurting.  It can be hard for me to blog when I am having trouble finding joy on a day to day basis.

So I am sorry if being true to who I am and how I am feeling does not live up to blogger world standards. It may not always be happy hues and snazzy outfits from here on out and if that is not your thing, then feel free to stop following along. This is my life right now and I am trying my best to keep floating. I am learning to live without my dad, trying to fill a void in my heart where he has left, and create a new normal.  

Monday, March 9, 2015

Let's Take Five

[One]: You know that phrase, Home Is Where The Heart Is? It's been on my heart heavily these days. My home is truly where my heart is. Forgive me, chickadees, for not being ready to talk about what has been going on in this world o' mine but it has been a little too much for me to even want to face. I was happy to head home this weekend for a much needed gal pal sesh with my dear little sister. It was lovely to get out for the day and pop into a few stores, grab some grub, and talk about all of the mischief we found ourselves into growing up. We even ventured off to get mani's and pedi's on Saturday afternoon. Of course I opted for my signature hue, poppy red!  Let me tell you gal pals, it was just what the doctor called for. There is something special about having a sister as a best friend. She is always there no matter what and can always make you feel better when you are at your worst. My sister has made me a better person and I wouldn't be where I am without her. 

[Two]: My honeybee and I will be hoppin' on a plane here within the next couple of weeks to jet off to Aruba! Hello sunshine! The thought of basking in the sun with my toesies in the sand makes my heart skip a beat! We have yet to travel to Aruba, but have heard nothing but wonderful things about that lovely place! If you have ventured to that hot spot before, do share what is on your must-do list! We are anxiously counting down the days! Stay tuned, I can't wait to share what we will be up to!

[Three]: February was a cold one here in good 'ol Columbus and I often found myself hibernating under the covers.  I turned complete couch potato on the weekends and in between my Dateline binge watching [it's a guilty pleasure of mine!], I found myself on Nexflix perusing the documentaries.  I realize I am totally late in the game in terms of Bill Cunningham's documentary, Bill Cunningham New York, but I couldn't move my tiny fingers fast enough to press play! If you have yet to watch this documentary, hop to it! I found myself smiling, giggling, and at times, crying at how beautifully done this documentary was.  For someone who does such wonderful work and is loved by so many in the fashion industry, he lives such a mysterious and simple lifestyle. So many times we get caught up in the materialism of today's society, but Bill continues to stay grounded.  His giggle is contagious! Oh what I wouldn't do to spend a day with the man, his adorable blue jacket, and that bike of his! 

[Four]: How adorable is this striped necklace? It would be the perfect piece of  sass to put on as I am racing out the door in the morning! I have had the DIY itch lately so I may or may not venture out to my local craft store to make my own version of this little number. However, I am tempted to just purchase this one and call it a day since I just found out it is 40% off. Total steal if you ask me, darlin'! 

[Five]: If you read my blog on the daily, you know that this little gal is fitness obsessed! Pure Barre, yoga, I love it all! Up until recently, I really steered clear from cardio because it be honest, it made me shake in my boots! I am happy to say, that is no longer the case, dear chickadees!  If you are in the Columbus area, you must make your way to System of Strength. I cannot squeal how much it has won my heart over! My tuchus and arms hate me on the daily but I still find myself hobbling back for more! I feel like I need to reward myself for all of my hard work with brand new spankin' kicks!  Have any of you local gal pals fell in love with SOS just as I have? Do tell! If you aren't local but curious as to how I torture myself with this love-hate relationship, you can take a peek here! If your brave enough, you can use the videos and get your own workout on in the comfort of your own home! Get it, lady!

Happy Monday, you lovely people! I hope your day is filled with happiness, sunshine, and positivity!