100 Happy Days Challenge

Could you be happy for 100 days in a row?

That’s the question presented by 100happydays.com. I was inspired by a blogger I greatly admire over at dressesforjulie to commit to this challenge. In short, it’s a photo-a-day op to show what makes you happy. It also gives you a chance to see what things make your friends happy. It’s so easy to read about all the negativity in the world, it’s nice to find something that focuses on the positives!

“It is not a happiness competition or a showing off contest. If you try to please/make others jealous via your pictures – you lose without even starting.”

My outlet of choice is Instagram. Follow me and let me know what makes you happy!

IMG_6854^^Sunday night I went on a long-overdue date with my bf. We went and saw Liam Neeson’s new movie: Non-Stop, then got dinner at Chili’s (our fave Sunday night restaurant).

Ivory cardi: Forever 21
Navy floral top: Old Navy
Skinny skinnies: Forever 21
Navy flats: Target

IMG_6891Greige (Is it gray? Is it beige?) printed cardigan: Target
Pink cowl-neck top: Calvin Klein
Brown dress pants: Target
Beige flats: Old Navy

Is this week over yet? I want it to be Saturday so we can have my best friend’s BACHELORETTE PARTY!!!!

Part 3: 6 Months Down

Reflections, reflections…where do I begin rambling?

If you’ve seen a few of my posts, you’ve probably figured out that I am not buying new clothes for a year! I hit my halfway point earlier this month (!!!), and I have to admit…it’s not nearly as awful as I forebode it to be.

I’ve allowed myself certain exceptions in that I can sell clothes at the local discount store, and I can use the money I make to spend anyway I want. In other words, I pretty much have to sell 5-10 things to buy one new item.

Okayokay, I have ONE confession to make: I slipped up once when I was buying my suit for New Orleans 2 weeks ago. I came across the most PERFECT navy Tommy Hilfiger cardigan. It was $63…but I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I bought it with the rest of my suit to bury the cost. So…I guess I won’t be buying anything else for a while until I recoup the cost :/

bluecardiI would be lying if I said I haven’t worn it 5+ times already…it really is the perfect navy cardi I was looking for. Moving on.

I have been relatively good otherwise, purging several items in my closet that I have finally accepted don’t fit or look right. I’ve also learned to appreciate both new and old items, forcing a creativity out of myself that I didn’t know was there. I used to buy cheap and in bulk, but after having to get rid of so many items because they were simply uncomfortable or falling apart, I want to invest more in quality. Like the Tommy Hilfiger cardi! 🙂 Haha, just kidding. I still have a long ways to go in terms of a total wardrobe overhaul, but I’m well past where I thought I would be.

I thought it best to set some goals for myself for the next 6 months, to really get the most out of this experience:

  • The Rubber Band Method – tie a rubber band (or piece of string, whatever you have on hand) around each hanger in your closet. Cut the band off when you wear that item. After several months, evaluate what you have not worn and decide if it’s really worth keeping or not.
  • Log My Outfits – I invested in an app called “Stylebook” (~$4) where you can basically turn your wardrobe into a digital closet (anyone reminiscing about 1995’s Clueless?). I won’t go into all the amazing things you can do with this app, but logging your outfits by day is one of them. You can run different stats such as your 25 most worn items, least worn items, cost per wear, etc. This is similar to the rubber band method, but I thought since I’ve paid for the app, I should use all of it’s features!
  • Invest in a GOOD DSLR Camera – enough said. This need extends beyond the boundaries of this blog, but I am out of my league here. Recommendations anyone?!
  • Mini-Challenges – nothing got me out of my comfort zone quite like my challenge last fall of wearing ten items in ten days that I’ve never worn or knew how to style before. Challenges make me excited about what I’m doing–they inspire me to reach outside of my boundaries, and make for more interesting reads.

That’s all I have for tonight. Less-wordy posts from here on out! 🙂 I leave you to the clip that I drooled over in the 90’s…wishing I had a closet just like Cher’s. AS IF!

Part 2: NOLA and the Unexpected Expense

As I mentioned in my previous post, I spent the better half of last week in New Orleans! I was there for work, helping man our company booth at a big orthopedic trade show. This was my first official work trip, and it was awesome to say the least. I worked hard in the daytime and played hard in the evening:

IMG_6731THE Bourbon Street ^^ I’ve heard many stories about this legendary location, and they did not let me down. Yes, those are boys throwing beads off the balcony at passerbyers, and no, it was not Mardi Gras. I wish I could say this was the worst thing that I saw, but what happens in NOLA…

IMG_6717Let’s rewind for a sec. Above is a selfie I managed to take in what felt like one of two 5 minute breaks I took in two days. I’m sporting my new suit (details below).

IMG_6730Got to dine at House of Blues with some amazing visuals. My phone does an injustice to the lighting and murals of artists that have come through/from New Orleans.

IMG_6729IMG_6752Peeked into some old antique shops.

IMG_6751Got a hurricane at Pat O’Briens…apparently this is a tourist-must. Too sweet for my liking, but it succeeded in knocking me on my rear the rest of the night.

I swear the funniest thing that happened on this trip (aside from the staggering amount of drunks doing stupid things–myself not excluded) was when I saw some guy throw beads off the balcony at my head. I did this weird duck/cover-maneuver-thing and the beads landed around my neck. I was so proud of my unintentional awesomeness I decided to sport the beads the rest of the night!

IMG_6756Okay, somebody’s got to help me out here. I saw this corgi-looking piece of art (and variations) around the city, and I have no idea who the artist is or if it’s even supposed to be a corgi. I like to pretend it is, because they. are. my. obsession. And I’m getting a corgi come May 🙂

IMG_6757I’m so glad we got to see a live jazz show on our last evening there. I would feel my trip was incomplete if I had not.

IMG_6771My cat was happy to see me when I came home 🙂

Now onto the (not-so-awesome) suit details, haha. Obviously when I started this no-new-clothes-for-a-year journey, I was not planning on having to buy a new suit. Unfortunately, this suit, along w/ a few new pairs of shoes, set me back over $350…sighhh. I don’t really feel bad about buying it, well, because I HAD to for work. It’s not like it’s an indulgent piece I’m going to be sporting on the weekends. Here are some closer-up shots:

20140322-211430.jpg

It’s a Tahari-brand navy pinstripe suit. I tried on what felt like every brand and color Macy’s had to offer in my size, and this one looked the best with my light complexion and blonde hair. I bought the jacket with the pants and the skirt, to give me a little variation if I had to (and I did) wear it back-to-back days. The pink cowl-neck top is Calvin Klein and complimented the blue well.

The shoes are probably where I cheated a little bit. Because I had a brand new suit, and it was my first impression-making work trip, I felt like I needed new shoes to match. Also, I don’t have any super comfy dressy shoes (I was standing for 10+ hours each day in a convention center that was–not even joking–a mile long). Now, did I need 3 new pairs? Probably not.

20140322-211437.jpgI got all three pairs at DSW. Both pairs of heels are ridiculously comfy, but I ended up not even wearing the nude pumps w/ the bows. The blue loafers are (hangs head in shame) not really what I wanted to emphasize in that pic, but they wouldn’t fit in a square slot, haha. By the end of the first day, I did not even care how ugly the loafers were, because they felt miraculous on my feet.

I also had to get my hair trimmed…which I’m not happy about. I get so stressed out about getting my hair cut–some people can get really excited holding a pair of scissors…whatever. I guess it’s the healthy thing to do for your hair.

So that was my trip to N’awlins (grimace) in a nutshell. I am looking forward to doing a blog makeover tomorrow! 🙂

XO

Part 1: Catching Up

Being away from your blog for any extended amount of time makes it feel so impossible to catch up! Thus, I bring you part 1 of a 3-part weekend series.

These last two weeks have been hectic, to say the least. Last week I was in New Orleans for work (part 2 of my weekend update) and managed to catch the nasty flu virus, incapacitating me for the first half of this week. I’m still operating at about 50%. I’ve only managed to get two outfit of the days captured in the last two weeks:

IMG_6650Emerald-green cardigan w/ black trim: H&M
Cutout purple tank: Forever 21
Purple knotted-earrings: Old Navy
Black pencil skirt: ummm…Charlotte Russe maybe?
Black Pumps: Target

IMG_6698The main reason for this outfit was that I love the top, the rest out of the outfit was filler.

Blue/red floral chiffon top: Forever 21
Blue dress pants: Target
Blue loafers (new): DSW

Now, on a sad note: my baby boy of 13.5 years is not doing so well. We expected he wouldn’t make it through this week, but he’s rallied the last couple days after having a seizure on Monday. I got Jace when I was in 6th grade. He is my first and only pup, and he means the absolute world to me. He’s been with me through so much–first crushes, breakups, moves, waiting for me to come back from college, the list goes on:

photo 1 photo 2 photo 3 photo 4He has been a faithful companion and listener, and even though he’s had a good life, I will miss him terribly 😥

Burgundy and White Polka Dots

20140306-215429.jpgBurgundy w/ white polka dots top: Forever 21
Taupe skirt: H&M

Sorry for being so lame and not posting lately, I’ll get some new outfits together soon. I’m traveling for work next week, and I had to get a real suit for the occasion. Updates and pics soon!

XO loves

H&M Mini-Haul

20140302-191021.jpgIvory cardi: Forever 21
Floral top: H&M
Taupe skirt: H&M
Polka dot Mary Jane’s: Target

As I mentioned in my prior post, I picked up a few things from H&M courtesy of my Valentine…aka my awesome boyfriend 🙂 The skirt (27.96) and floral/dotted top (7.45) were among the purchased, as well as a red cardi (may return) and a pair of floral skinnies (on backorder).

My current clothing allowance stands at a measely 21.54…but I can handle that after my recent spree 🙂

XO