Saturday, March 31, 2012

Egg Head

We used to have this game for the OG Nintendo, Dizzy. It was another one of my Dad’s amazing Shopping Network purchases. Dizzy was an egg and the point of the game was to rescue his girlfriend, Daisy (also an egg), from an evil wizard. Dizzy had to collect objects as well as 100 stars. Since Dizzy was a walking hard boiled egg, he was naturally exposed to evils that would crack his shell like falling and running into spiders. He also needed some fancy swim gear in order to go under water. Dizzy was addicting. after all wiki knowledge calls it the “NES Adventure Game of the Year 1991' by Game Players Magazine”.

Sometimes when I am looking through a carton of eggs at the grocery store, I think of Dizzy’s adventure and the charming music that would play in the background. (it should be w/Mario Brothers on the NES greatest hits soundtrack). Just like with Dizzy, I have become convinced lately that eggs have other uses than eating. (The incredible, wearable egg). Lately, my hair has been an unattractive mix of greasy and dry. Greasy on the top, dry on the bottom my hair is much like a mullet of shame. I have always turned to home remedies when it comes to hair and skin. Why is it we pay so much for products at the store that have “all natural ingredients”? Why just not buy said ingredients and make up your own customized product at a fraction of the price? When I was in high school, I had the “Rachel” complete with blonde highlights made fresh from sun-in and hair bleach. (Hello frosted tips). While I made a pretty good looking blonde, after a while my hair began to have the consistency of a straw hat. It was broken and brittle at the end with very little shine. The best solution for this problem came straight from my original hipster Dad’s Pabst Blue Ribbon stash in the basement. I would open a can of PBR and let it sit until it was pretty flat. (Maybe a little sip test along the way..). Then I would pour the beer on my head in the shower and shampoo as usual. The result: shiny Rachel tresses..and eventually going back to my natural brown. Since my hair has had the greasy texture to it lately, I wanted a similar remedy. I found an article on Women’s Day that had some great ideas for items around the house as hair/skin treatments. I found the egg to be the best solution form my problem. The white part treats the grease while the yoke coats dry tresses with moisture. With the information from the article, I came up with my own little egg hair treatment. It really helped absorb the moisture around my scalp and my ends were much less brittle. Here is my little egg-cellent (couldn’t resist) home hair remedy. If you only have one of the problems..don’t use the whole egg. Whites for oily, yokes for dry.



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Egg
2 eggs..my hair is thick
Egg2
Separate egg whites and yoke
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rub mixture into hair as needed
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Wait 20 mins..
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careful not to break any glasses!


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Seeing Spots



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I have been looking for a way to do a tonal look. Lighter and darker shades of the same color always contrast so nicely. When I put on this T-shirt, the colors seemed to blend together seamlessly. There was one tiny problem…a grease spot. Right at the bottom of the V. Great. Whenever I go to a movie I have some sort of hole in my chin that transfers popcorn grease right onto whatever I am wearing. Last time I was at the movies wearing this teal shirt I had nice big grease spot, right over my stomach as if the popcorn was trying to get in through my belly button. When I pointed out my problem to my sister and my friend, they both suggested easy remedies, dish soap or cheap shampoo. I of course forgot to pretreat the shirt and tossed it right on the hamper. I was in the shower the next morning awkwardly leaning out trying to get the perfect shower jam on my iphone and I saw the popcorn tainted shirt. I looked over at the White Rain that I buy the girls and snatched the shirt into the shower. I rubbed the white rain over the stain, rinsed it under the shower head and tossed it right back into the hamper. It went through the wash as usual and the stain was gone. I am a sucker for home remedies. Too bad I didn’t have time to White Rain my V-neck. I tried on necklace after necklace. All of them fell slightly short of covering the stain. I needed a larger neck adornment. Then it hit me: scarf. The leopard was perfect against the shades of purple and it allowed me to throw on a sweater jacket. Is it ok to wear multiple leopard accessories? Especially when one is around your neck and the other is on your feet? I decided it was ok..and a little edgy.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Top 8

Since I can't shop for some of my favorite things like clothes and shoes..I decided to give my blog a little make over. I am completely obsessed with Etsy lately. What great way for creative and crafty people to get their products out there. Looking for some great antique jewelery? a hand crochet baby hat? how about some blog goodies...Etsy has it all!! I found this amazing new design from Whimsical Blogs . I was looking for something simple that involved a bird. I think my blog is growing up!! Guess that is what happens when you near your first birthday....

As am looking down the last ten days of my no shopping pledge..(minus some a weak moment involving shoes...) I can't help but to wonder what exactly I should get first. Do I get a practical item like a new bra? or something fun like a pair of tribal wedges? I have a running list of what is going to be my first purchase. Here are my top 8 items. I think the bird dress must make a nest in my closet. I can say one thing...I am ready for some color soon. I can't get enough bold hues like a pink blazer or a bright purse.


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3 She in side  7 H&M
4 Seychelles 8 Wacoal

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Temptation

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I think of temptation as that little devil that sits on your shoulder and tells you to do bad things. There is the red version of you that sits there with a malicious grin and says things like “go ahead..take another cookie..no one is looking…just one more cookie wont make you fat..” Then there is the harp playing, halo wearing goodie two shoes version of yourself saying things like..”You will hate yourself for eating more one cookie.” (Note: I am writing this out while eating Handel’s butter pecan icecream..for dinner). Temptation is what lures us into doing thing we know are bad..like a dangerous magnet taking away inhibitions. Every day we are tempted to do something we know is wrong whether it be eating or drinking the wrong things, spreading that damaging gossip, or ignoring a festering problem. Temptation is designed to make what we aren’t supposed to have oh so desirable. Sometimes we need to give into temptation so we have something look back on as wrong. Life lessons usually come from what we did wrong and not what we did right. We learn from our mistakes and ask for forgiveness….that is what being human is all about.

The one temptation I have been dealing with lately is the urge to splurge. I just want to buy myself something for spring..a swimsuit cover-up, some new strappy heels, a fun scarf. I haven’t bought anything since Lent began somewhere at the end of February. I have been avoiding the mall, shopping at Wal-Mart instead of Target, and deleting any sale code emails that I get. I have been craving a beautiful printed maxi dress or a punchy colored blazer..but alas, I have resisted the temptation to buy anything. Then there was this one Sunday. I am not sure what got to me..whether it was a sale at Urban Outfitters on the shoes I had been oogling at or the effects of a particularly terrible week…but I caved.

I went on UO to get a new paper lantern for our living room lamp. UO has the best selection of fun house decorative accents. Maybe it brings me back to my dorm decorating days, but I love whimsical home accents..and my lamp with rose-headed people was no exception. UO now offers free shipping for items when you spend fifty dollars. (temptation). The lamp was sixteen...but I hate having to pay for shipping. I remembered the shoes. Just a click..to see if they had them. They were suede pumps in an orangey-coral color. They were the center of an email a few months back that I kept in my inbox for longer than I would like to admit. (temptation). I clicked. They came up. They were marked down ten dollars. (temptation). The little devil appeared on my shoulder. “Just buy them. No one will ever know. You could wear them after Easter and say they were your first purchase.” Damn you devil. “No..you shouldn’t buy them. You said you weren’t going to buy anything for forty days. What credibility are you going to have if you can’t be honest?” Shut up Goody Two Shoes. (or should I say Goody no shoes?). I noticed there were only two sizes left. (temptation). 6 and 7. I clicked on the 7. Quantity..1. (no don’t do it!). Add to cart. (close the window..close the window!!!). Click on cart. Begin check out. (noooo..don’t go to the purse. Don’t get the credit card out). Would you like to use Paypal? Yes I would. (no…crap. Paypal you make it too easy.). Log into Paypal. Would you like to authorize purchase? My finger trembled as I slid it across the mouse pad. It felt so wrong. I saw the thumbnail image of the shoes in my cart. Click. Thank you for your purchase from Urban Outfitters. I am weak. I should be ashamed. I tried to resist temptation and caved. Bless me Father for I have sinned…but honestly look at those hot shoes…weren’t they worth it?

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Shirt: Gift
Pants: The Limited
Necklace: Charlotte Russe
Shoes: Urban Outfitters




Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Pet Sitter


Olivia is always one to sweat the hypothetical. She asks for something like a cell phone and cries when I tell her I was twenty-five when I got my first phone. “Do you know who old I was?” My dad piped in. She ignored him as the tears started to brew over her eyes. “Can I have an iPad?” She asked.

Me: Do you have any money?
Olivia: Can’t you just put it on your credit card?
Me: No. I don’t need an iPad. You can buy one with your money
Olivia: How much does one cost?
Me: like five hundred dollars.
Olivia: Where am I going to get five-hundred dollars?
Me: Get a job
Olivia: I can’t get a job. Can’t you just make five hundred dollars from paper?
Me: If I could do that don’t you think we would have a house with more than one bathroom?
Olivia: I mean one of those bills. Like you make for my lunch money. Can’t you make a bill for five hundred dollars?
Me: You mean a check?
Olivia: yes. Can you write a check for five hundred dollars so I can get an ipad?
Me: No. I would have to have five hundred extra dollars in my checking account. You don’t just write checks.
Olivia: How am I supposed to get an ipad?
Layla: you could have a lemonade stand.
Me: there you go. You would need to have a couple lemonade stands
Layla: like five?
Me: if you make twenty dollars per lemonade stand, then you would need two hundred and fifty lemonade stands to get an iPad
Olivia: But I want an iPad now.
Me: Why do you need an iPad?
Olivia: For the apps. I like apps
Me: What is wrong with just using a computer?
Olivia: It doesn’t use apps. It is useless.
Me: I see.
Layla: how about a pet sitting business? You could walk and feed dogs.
Olivia. Yeah!! I could do that. Can I start walking dogs for money?
Me: If you want. That is a lot of dogs to walk.
Olivia: I need posters. Can I make posters and put them in the yard so people know I walk dogs?
Me: sure.
Layla: you need to get it laminated. So they don’t get wet. Just like at school. The janitor laminates things for us.
Me: Really?
Layla: Yep. Olivia needs to have the janitor laminate her posters.
Olivia: Can’t I just laminate them at home?
Me: You need a laminator.
Olivia: Can you buy me one?
Me: No. that is silly.
Olivia: Can I buy one? I have ten dollars.
Me: they cost more than ten dollars.
Olivia: How am I going to get my signs laminated?
Me: take them to Kinkos or something.
Olivia: Can I send it to uncle Jeremy? He makes signs
Me: Sure
Olivia: I can’t wait to get home and make a sign.

I remember starting a "business" as a kid. I read tons of The Babysitters' Club or always imagined having the perfect Lemonade stand. There was so much I wanted to buy and I couldn't understand why my parents just wouldn't give me what I wanted. Huffy bike..Barbie dream house (with elevator), Hypercolor T-shirt, Umbros Shorts, a Walkman and New Kids on the Block Tapes, a Nintendo complete with Duck Hunt...there was so much temptation for a kid. And this was before the world of cell phones and laptop computers and iPads. It is funny to watch the kids gradually grasp the concept of why they don't have everything and how much stuff actually costs. I am sure Olivia won't walk a single dog...but at least I don't have to be the mean Mom who won't buy their kid an iPad (today).

Parenting tip: If you want to keep your children busy for hours...tell them they can't have an iPad so they spend hours making signs for their new "business."





Writing prompt: Do you remember starting a business as a child. Was it a lemonade stand or your version of the Babysitters' Club? What did you want to buy with the money? Were you successful or did you loose interest before you even started?


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The State of Outside

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Weather is always my go-to small talk conversation piece. If you don’t really know someone, you can always say…man its really (warm, cold, crappy, snowy, breezy, sunny, grey, etc, etc) outside. We all have to go outside..it is the thing that binds us. (Unless of course you work in outer space). When you live in an area that experiences all four seasons, weather tends to be the hot topic along with..man I am getting old, sports, and of course did you see so and so’s facebook status? As I have said before, human interaction has not always been my strong suit. There always seems to be so much more going on in my life that the state of outside. But yet, I always find myself commenting about the weather. Maybe it is as standard as saying excuse me when squeezing by a stranger. I guess I spend a great deal of time discussing the state of outside. I am one of those people who is affected by lack of sun or too much cold..etc. My mood can be entirely regulated by what is like outside. Too many days with out sun, and I can barely get out of bed. There is this winter funk that usually sets in around late February and early March.

Something else happened that made me believe that there would be six more weeks of winter (sorry groundhog); I put a hole in my navy tights. Most of my favorite skirt outfits involve navy and usually this is not the time of year to be going bare legged. Tights season in Ohio starts in November and goes until early April. I figured since I wasn’t about to go buy a new pair of navy tights…it was most likely going to get cold. Apparently the weather gods are on my side. With temps that feel like early summer, I got to wear my navy skirt and reveal my pale winter legs. At this rate..they will be summer ready before Easter!! I love mixing my structured work pieces like a navy pencil skirt with a tan outline with my relaxed weekend wear, like my three quarter sleeve fuchsia T-shirt. Add a big necklace, cagy wedges and a bright scarf.and I have a fun and colorful Spring Fever outfit.
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Shirt: Old Navy
Skirt: JC Penney
Scarf: Target
Ring: The Limited
Shoes: MIA (DSW)
Necklace: Dillards




Monday, March 19, 2012

The Swing

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What is it about a swing that makes kids so happy? I love the way they squeal with joy when their feet touch the sky. Nothing makes you feel more youthful and free than being on a swing..you become that kid again who thinks they are a bird. You start to sway really slow then gain a bit of momentum by pumping your legs. Legs out, legs tuck, lets out, legs tuck. Sometimes you hold on tight to the cold chain and lean back slowly to let the air puncture your cheeks. Then you arch your body forward so the back of your head gets a turn in the breeze. There is something completely magical about a swing. Who came up with this concept of a piece of rubber fastened to a chain so perfectly that it molds to every bottom? Our ten-day forecast in Ohio: amazing. With all stress and tension building up in my life, I couldn't think of anywhere better to go than to the playground. Josh and me played "best aunt and uncle ever" by taking the girls and my three year old niece on a walk to the playground yesterday. The sun was hot and the air had that perfect spring breeze as we pulled the little one in a wagon and the girls rode their bikes. Immediately the kids ran to the swings. "Push me! Push me!" they would yell. I remember when the girls were little; they didn't know how to make themselves go on the swing. I think that is one of those moments of motherhood that goes vaguely noticed but appreciated...the moment the kids can pump there legs and you don't have to push. I remember standing there pushing and pushing while they laughed.."Higher! Faster!” Push, push. "Are you good?" I would ask...my arms starting to get stiff from the constant motion. I start to think of things I could be doing while they were playing. I could be thumbing thought a magazine or getting their snack ready. I could be lying on a bench staring straight up at the clouds watching the day slowly float by. But there I was, pushing and pushing...making a funny face as they would soar closer to me. Then one day, they don't need me. They run over to a swing and start pumping their legs while I sit on a nearby bench and update my facebook status. As I stared at the clouds slowly floating by, I thought about how fast my kids have grown. They went from needing me to do everything to barely needing me at all. They can make their own food, ride their own bikes and push their own swings. I sometimes forget the little things. Some days, I get a memory or a glimpse of them when they were small…or even my own youth. I try to hold on to the good things….like tiny fingers clutching the chain on a swing crying out for more. If you are having trouble my recommendation is to head to your nearest playground..grab a swing and let your feet soar in the air.








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Shirt/Pants: The Gap
Shoes: Teva


Writing Prompt: Think of something you loved to do as a child. Was it a playground or a swing or your bike. Think of how you learned this activity and why it meant so much to you. Tell a story of you as a kid enjoying this activity and imagine yourself as an adult trying to do the same.






Friday, March 16, 2012

Going Green

Still looking for a great St.Patty's day outfit? Or, are you like me and can't get enough green this season? I love how a green blazer looks over a black and white striped T. A green shirt dress is a nice twist on an office staple. I am obsessed with these cute green and white wedges. Not feeling the luck o' the Irish? Try a fun accessory like sunglasses or a necklace. Unsure of what to pair green with? Try this skirt from Kohls with a navy T-shirt for a fun color block look. I love color in my wardrobe..and this spring it seems to be everywhere!! Have a great St.Patty's day. Cheers to a Guiness and a Ruben!!!


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Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Games People Play

“Look around tell me what you see.
What's happening to you and me. God grant me the serenity
To remember who I am
Cause you've given up your sanity
For your pride and your vanity
Turns you sad on humanity
And you don't give a da da da da da” Joe South- The Games People Play


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My posting has been scarce lately….but don’t worry, I will be back with a vengeance. I just read this amazing guide for bloggers  from A Beautiful Mess (one of the best names for a blog!) …I love how simply put the information while still being inspiring. It was like something clicked on in my mind. (maybe my heart got two sizes bigger...) I was sort of getting down on myself lately. Last week, I wondered where the heck my blog was going. It was one of those moments where you got a little glimpse of the path you need to take...like the Fidelity commercials are putting green arrows all around. I think there are signs and coincidences all around us..we just need to keep the faith and trust in ourselves. Do you ever get caught up in self-pity? There are days when we let other people think of us or say about us dictate how we feel about ourselves. I am one of those people who say likes to say..I am who I am and I don’t care what other people think. The truth is, we all care. Even if it is just a little. It takes a lot to be thick skinned. I guess my idea of what it means to be a decent person is not universally shared. I haven’t been posting because I have been going through some personal issues. Don’t worry, it is nothing tragic and no one is injured. My blog is a place of happiness and confidence and I don’t want to be one of those people who uses a blog to lash out on the things in life they can’t control. (That is for good old-fashioned pen and paper). When I start letting that negativity in the Pursuit, then they have taken the one thing I can claim as my own. And nothing makes me more happy and confident then a great color top and a fun spring skirt. I wore this outfit the other day for an unseasonably warm spring day. This black and white Limited skirt is my go to skirt. It is so easy to wear as almost anything in my closet matches….and it has pockets..bonus! I love taking pictures in the afternoon sun...the glow from the day's end setting behind the house may be my best light.

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Shirt: Target
Skirt: The Limited
Shoes: Seychelles (DSW)
Necklace: Charlotte Russe



Part of my new coming blog idea is to separate my family stories and my outfit posts. Putting them together takes away their individual presence. I also plan on doing a section for creative writing for my journaling followers. I love writing prompts and assignments. This is the pursuit of creativity, the pursuit of inspiration the pursuit of laughs and stories. Do you know what makes me truly happy? Sharing a laugh with a friend and putting my individual stamp on the world. Sometimes life hands us situations that we don’t agree with and are powerless to change. My weapon against this is simply my writing. (it is mightier than a sword..) What do you do to cope when things aren't going how you imagined?