Sunday, August 25, 2013

Happy Women's Equality Day - August 26, 2013!

I still cannot believe that women have only been voting for 93 years - that's not even a century! But I'm so thankful for the women who fought hard to make it happen. Women's Equality Day is a bit of a tribute to them, but also a reminder of the strides yet to come. Even if women are lawfully equal, there's still great sexual oppression and women are constantly dehumanized by our media. Women make 77 cent to the dollar of their male colleague (source) and 1 in 6 women will be the victim of rape or attempted rape in her lifetime (source). Women represent only 5% of CEOs among Fortune 500 companies and make up only 18% of the U.S. congress (source) and only 20% of the U.S. senate (which is the highest in history). The U.S. ranks 77th as far as female political leaders go, behind countries such as Afghanistan, Rwanda, Mexico, and Iraq (source). Regardless of legal strides made, none of these facts would demonstrate that feminism is over and the movement has met its needs. On the contrary, sexual oppression is running rampant and bigotry is just as widespread as its ever been. Let's take a look at some proud woman-moments and pro-feminist chatter. Here's to years of many more!



Tuesday, August 13, 2013


This outfit is just a quickie. (Isn't that what every girl yearns to hear?) I was ready to spend the day painting the porch but wanted to update the blog first and I figured a good ole casual "painting the porch" outfit would be a good fit for the blog since that's all my life is right now. I'm desperate to finish up the porch this weekend so that the last two weeks of my summer can be spent doing other things. Who knew that painting a small, enclosed room could take so long? I had decided to accent the trim with blue (the walls are yellow) and so now I'm stuck doing touch ups around the edges of the trim. Damn my constant appeal to unneeded accents. Oh well, I'm looking forward to autumn evenings spent doing homework and reading on the porch, surrounded by some damn fine trim.
Since the porch is so dirty and hot, I've been wearing old baggy clothes to do the painting. So, not much can be said about the quality of what I'm wearing, except my go-to Doc Martens (which I found beat in and rugged for $6 at some hole-in-the-wall store in Stillwater).
Remember these shorts???? I wore them way back when. I can't believe I dug up that post. Look at my fat face and funny poses and OH! Moses, my babe, how I miss him....
Anyways, now that that nostalgia kick is over, I found these shorts as pants in my sister's closet many years ago. Delia's, size 5. I decided to cut them into shorts and rock 'em all baggy and stuff, aka ideal for painting. Speaking of stuff I found in my sister's closet, this flannel shirt was also hers. Miley Cyrus for Max Azria by Walmart so, you know, HIGH QUALITY.
Please note, I don't shop at Walmart. But my sister does. And free clothes are free clothes, especially when you're a penniless unpaid intern.
These photos are pretty boring, so I'm trying to fill this post with semi-amusing words. There were loads of bizarre noises happening in the alley today and I was so sure that some maniac was going to run me over or the weird Rear Window kid down the alley would stalk by and stare at me like a leper. Because of this, you get a ton of photos of me standing around with big hair, my mouth gaping, and my eyes all squinty, aka boring face. Sorry about this!
Do you guys want an amusing story that doesn't have to do with painting or cheap clothes? Well, this one had me squealing with both laughter and semi-disgust. I have this weird boyfriend who I don't bring out in public much (for good reasons) and last night we were laying on the couch when he decided to pretend to eat my hand. When I decided I'd had enough, I pulled my hand out and just so happened to be holding his old, chewed up nicotine gum. He turned bright red and I burst out in laughter for about 20 minutes before he tried to change the subject and gain back his dignity. But there you have it - an anecdote without painting or clothes involved!
I'm not sure if that was actually a good anecdote, or if you're now just scratching your heads over my weird hand-eating boyfriend.
Anyways, I'm going to finish this up since I'm hungry and haven't had my daily Gilmore Girls fix (you know, I've only seen that show all the way through about 15 times). I've been feeling all super emotional and boring lately, so I just wanted to say thank you all who left comments on my last post letting me know what was going on in your life. Please continue to leave me random stories. The point of blogging is to share stories and not only have other people hear about your life, but to hear about the lives of others. Am I right or am I right?
Anyway, I have a meeting and an internship interview tomorrow, so I better get going. I also have a follow up interview for a different internship on Thursday. Wish me luck! I want both so badly (is that being internship selfish?).

Friday, August 9, 2013

Big Star

Summer can start! I finished up my web design class yesterday and am all amped up to have three weeks of fun. I kicked Friday off with spending several hours at my internship, getting pissed off, buying school supplies at Walgreens, discovering that my laptop Godfrey is broken, researching new laptops, and then cleaning the fish tank. Cool. This better not be what my summer is like. Okay, it isn't all bad. My friend Tyler stopped over and I adore him so that was nice. I had corn on the cob and ate on the back deck with my parents. I got a call back for an internship I really want. I signed up to attend a political summit in a few weeks. I get to see my best friend of 16 years tomorrow (after not seeing her for months!) and my boyfriend is taking me to dinner at the restaurant that we had our first date. Life is great.
I'm glad that I tend to have a good outlook on things. I was contemplating this today. Are people born naturally optimistic or pessimistic? Or is it entirely a choice? I go through phases where I get myself worked up, thinking that my life is horrid and completely hopeless and nothing is good. But then I give it a day or two to cool off and am able to think clearer. Today as I left my internship in a huff after pretty much being called incompetent about typefaces (!!!!!!) I wandered the aisles of Walgreen's and just thought things over. Then I took a long walk home in the sun and worked to convince myself that things aren't really that bad and people who put you down really don't matter. Why are people rude & petty anyways? I don't understand it. This outfit is to counter all of that unhappiness - bright and colourful and optimistic!
I've been sick with an infection from bad allergies (dang it, I love my cats too much). My doctor prescribed me a nasal spray so my boyfriend brought me to pick it up. While we were waiting I was looking at the hair stuff. There's been a box of Goody hairclips there for years and every time I go to pharmacy, I look at it and want it so bad. I mentioned this to my boyfriend and he bought them for me. And an ice cream cone. The small things that make my life so wonderful - Goody hairclips like I wore in pre-K and mint chip ice cream.
I found this shirt in some little store in Montmartre when I was in Paris in June. I liked the bright colours and the '70s vibes. I think it's deadstock from the '70s actually, given how (badly) the fabric breathes. I wasn't sure what to wear with these acid wash Cheap Mondays so I thought, "I might as well go all out with colour!" and threw on this top, immediately knowing that these orange sneakers from yeswalker were necessary. And of course the heart shaped shades. I couldn't resist. And do you know what? Wearing this outfit actually made me happy.
My boyfriend shot these photos for me and I was so happy about everything that I got a bit silly (keep your eyes peeled for a ridiculous outtake in the next few days). Being light of heart at the right times is such a good feeling. Who knew that silliness could heal the heart so well?

Keeping this blog is also something that frees my heart and brings me great joy. I don't care how many people read it or how many people like my outfits. I only care that some people hear my words and some people think about them and have something to say. Although some people have nasty things to say to me on my blog, for the most part it's a supportive community of young people all wanting to make the world more beautiful. I was pretty elated when I found out that over 900 people visited my blog yesterday. This is more than double the average. Maybe these people weren't reading my words, but I'd like to think that they were. And I'd like to think that, even if you don't take them to heart, they're at least considered as viable and true. It's hard being someone who, ever since she was a toddler and had to go to speech therapy with a mouth full of lisps, has been told that she talks wrong. That she doesn't articulate well. That her feelings don't matter, her opinion doesn't matter, what she has to say doesn't matter. All I care is that one person thinks that my words matter. So what I'm really getting to is this: I'm super emotional today and just want to give a huge THANKS and a huge hug to all the sweet words that have been coming my way lately. I wish that I could individually get to know every reader. I wish that I could hear about your life and your troubles and your joys, the way that you hear about mine. So here's what I'm asking of you: leave a comment telling me something about yourself, something that's been troubling you, and something that you feel positive or joyful about.
For me, well you know about me, but I'll share my one trouble and my one optimism for today. My trouble is that a former co-worker's son was badly beaten by a gang in Saint Paul. He was just walking down the street and they attacked him. This man, the father, was the nicest guy, always with a giant smile on his face and with a love for silent films. Please keep the son & his family in your prayers & thoughts.
My optimism is this: mean people don't matter. I have so much love and friendship in my life, and thus I have so much to be thankful for. Even if today had its downs, I was also able to realise its ups. And I'm thankful for that.
Stay optimistic, my friends xx

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Ain't No One

I think it was only just in the last post that I was writing about how much I missed taking my own blog photos - just me, my tripod, and the big wide alley. So, I left class early today and went home to take photos by myself before anyone else got home. The classroom at my university is freezing cold and I had spent a good 15 minutes walking around the building and standing outside reading the paper and trying to get I decided that it was just easier to leave and go back tomorrow with a sweatshirt, lots of snacks, and better focus. I have two days of class left and then SUMMER for three weeks before back to school.
My boyfriend and I made a list of things we want to do in August when I'm out of school and he only has one class going instead of two. A lot of them are different movies to watch, but we also have road trips to hike in Redwing and Taylor's Falls, a day to eat falafel and vintage shop, and a double date to do paddle boats and mini golf. Friday freedom come sooner!
We reached the lower 80s for a temperature today - the warmest it's been in two weeks. Crazy! Minnesota is nuts because one week it will be 95 degrees and humid, and the next week it'll be 60 degrees and breezy. I like the moderate temps because they're easy to dress for. I was playing with my hair today and managed to achieve the closest thing to victory rolls that I've ever managed. My hair is too curly and unruly, I can never get them to work. But, I managed to get something close enough and decided to play off the Fifties theme with some high waist capris from Topshop, my go-to Payless saddle shoes, and a Coca Cola tee from Target (p.s. totally bummed that Target refuses to sign the sweatshop factory upgrades & I'm now forcing myself to boycott).
I definitely want to try the victory rolls again! Does anyone have tips? I'm thinking I might have to analyze Elizabeth's because she has similar hair. (Also, she's a GODDESS!)
This outfit made me feel rugged and like I should be wearing a baseball cap and playing ball with the neighbourhood kids. Even though I haven't played baseball in years - probably close to 10 now! - it's still one of my fondest summer memories. Summer when you're a kid is the greatest thing ever. No responsibilities, just get dirty and stay up all night. Jump in the pool to cool off, eat a popsicle, then head back out and get roughed up all over again. That being said, Minnesota winters were always a blast when I was a kid, too. For some reason, the sub zero temps just don't bother you when you're a kid (and trust me, it's not the snowball fights or the snowman building - I've tried that as an adult and I still freeze my butt off and go back in an unhappy popsicle with a pitiful snowman hiding in the backyard). But WHY am I talking about winter? What are your favourite childhood memories from summer?
Don't forget that THE GIVEAWAY ends tomorrow! I'm so jealous that one of you guys gets a sweet pair of ultra comfortable, stylish shoes - so why haven't that many people entered?? ENTER NOW. What better things do you have to do with your life???? Seriously. Tell me.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Golden Hour

Today I became the crazy neighbour lady. I ran outside in my pajamas, yelling my lungs out, and batting the hostas with a pink yard stick. I've been trying to get a cat out of my yard. For weeks now. It's this sneaky little black one that hides in the bushes underneath the bird feeders, waiting for an unsuspecting critter to come by. Now, I adore my critters. My birds, my chipmunks, my squirrels, my mice. They're all friendly to me and I spend evenings and mornings sitting and watching them, feeling absolutely at peace. They are my friends. I feel very protective of them and yes, I will do anything to keep the neighbourhood cats away. I don't care what type of reputation I get among my neighbours.
My boyfriend went out with me the other night to take these photos. I realised that I haven't once taken my own photos this summer (save for Paris). In my neighbourhood, I have received the reputation as that-one-girl-who-dresses-weird-and-takes-photos-of-herself-with-a-tripod-in-the-alley-regardless-of-sub-zero-temps (phew, that's lengthy, perhaps crazy-critter-protector wouldn't be so bad!). While I've been taking blog photos, so many people have come down my alley, driving, biking, walking their dogs. One time someone was making cement steps and watched the whole process for about 15 minutes before I even saw him! These people always just stare. No one has ever asked me what I was up to, which maybe concerns me a bit, or maybe it's a good thing. I read Elizabeth's new article on taking blog photos (excellent, by the way!) and am feeling a bit more empowered to get out and take some photos by myself. I always feel a bit more at peace, and less rushed, when doing it by myself. Besides, who cares what type of reputation I get amongst the neighbour-folk.
That said, my boyfriend took these beautiful photos and I'm very happy! I've been teaching him well. (Yeah, I will take credit for this....)  It was golden hour - the sunlight was coming through the trees just right, there was a soft, cool breeze coming through the trees, and everything was perfect and calm.
I was wearing one of my new favourite tee shirts - another one from my Auntie! I was wearing it a few weeks ago and my boyfriend comes into the room and says, "Hey, it's Susan BANTHONY!" Ugh. No, it's Susan B. Anthony! I've developed great respect for the Suffragettes, now that I'm older. When you're little and your mum is trying to encourage female role models (Marie Curie, Eleanor Roosevelt, etc.) they all just seem so stuffy and whatever. You take all that stuff for granted when you're young. Now that I'm 20 and practically a boring old lady, I'm understanding and grateful enough to wear her on my shirt. LOUD AND PROUD!
Speaking of clothes from my Auntie, I also snagged this hoodie from her. I was wearing it to class the other day and put my iPod in the right pocket...and it fell right out due to a massive moth-eaten hole. So I put it in the left pocket (after awkwardly maneuvering it out since I had the earbuds in, oops) only to have the same thing happen! I gave up at that point and just carried it. Still a quality, comfy hoodie. Something about it says crisp autumn days hiking Lake Superior to me.
This whole outfit is reminiscent of my time spent along the North Shore as a kid, wearing old hand-me-downs, beat up shoes, and just getting cool and comfy along the shores. I dream of that feeling almost everyday.
My boyfriend was also wearing his own pro-feminism shirt! We decided to take a photo of us together wearing our shirts and being happy feminists together. His says "Get Some...Consent Under Your Belt" and then gives the definition of consent on the back. Yeah, I gave it to him. YAY CONSENT. YAY FEMINISM.
This was just a short post for today. I have so much to do and so little to say - it's summer, after all! I am trying to feel more and talk less. Feel more and just be in the feeling, basking in it, enjoying it thoroughly.
Don't forget to enter the giveaway with Sole Provisions and that I'm looking for sponsors! I'm in the process of getting a few set up but am always looking for more.