31 December 2013


As the new year approaches (just hours left!) and everyone is publishing their top this or that of 2013 lists, I've been thinking of the top moments that will define 2013 for me when I look back. Here are a few of them:

Travel. I was fortunate enough to travel a bit this year. A girls trip to Chicago with my best girls from high school at the beginning of summer. Then out east twice this year. And the second trip out east at Thanksgiving included a side trip to Turks and Caicos, which was basically a dream come true!

Seeing tons of great live music. At the beginning of the year, I saw Quicksand in Detroit. Laneway Music Festival had its debut this fall and I had the good sense to get myself there to see the National, Sigur Ros, Frightened Rabbit, Matthew Dear and Run the Jewels. If the stage times had been a little more spread out, I would have managed to see Chvrches. Also saw Lord Huron and Alt-J in Chicago this fall. And We Were Promised Jetpacks here in Grand Rapids. Oh, and there was Lamp Light Music Festival mere blocks from my house. That was a whole weekend of house shows. Good stuff! My favorite show of the year would be a toss up between Lord Huron/Alt-J and Laneway. Both blew me away, they we so much fun!

Personal Best Time in the Grand Rapids Half Marathon. After achieving what had been my personal best time in a half marathon in my very first half in 2008, I was happy to have finally surpassed that time after hovering mere minutes behind that time for the last five years! How did that happen? I ran outside nearly all winter training for Riverbank Run 25K then basically switched to biking all summer until I picked up running again at the end of August. Maybe the cross training had something to do with the uptick in time?

SiTE:LAB. I volunteered again (quite a bit) with this great group of folks. An event in the spring. Then I was part of the team that launched an international design ideas competition to gather ideas for what should become of the historic, former natural history museum in my city. Then, hello Blandford Nature Center for a summer event and right into ArtPrize. Loved every minute of volunteering and can't wait to see what's in store for 2014. 

Biking this summer. Yeah, I already mentioned that I biked a bunch this summer up there with my bit about running, but there's more worth mentioning. There's something so satisfying about getting on your bike and being out on two wheels for a few hours. I did a handful of 60 mile round trip rides, and many more 30 milers. Yay for two wheels!

Overall. Looking at my highlight moments, this year boils down to doing the things that feed my spirit. While the activities themselves were part of what made my year a great one, the people I was fortunate enough to have shared time with this year - family and friends-who-feel-like-family made a huge impact on me this year. I'm grateful for everyone and everything that made my year an amazing one!

I hope you've had an awesome year! Here's to even more goodness in 2014. Happy New Year to you and yours!

23 December 2013

Post Solstice

Greetings from what seems like the longest winter ever already. How can it be that winter solstice was just on Saturday? I've had feelings of weather-related claustrophobia over the last few days. I'm trying my best to just be in each snowy/icy moment and embrace them for what they are, a chance to slow down and change up my routine. The worst part of the winter weather we've been having, the kind that makes traveling dangerous, is that I feel so isolated from other people. I need to be around people!

What do you do when you're feeling trapped by bad weather?

We were lucky enough in Grand Rapids to get not one, but two icy storms this weekend! I chipped through the ice to freedom Saturday morning. Then again Sunday evening so I'd be able escape to work this morning. While out in the elements yesterday, I enjoyed the smell of fresh doughnuts wafting over from the local bakery. Not that made the tedious chore of snow/ice removal a bit more enjoyable!

I managed to get out on Saturday for a long stretch of errand running that included a nice respite at Rowster for a latte and some Christmas card writing. Sitting in coffee shops has always been one of my favorite things to do. How great is it to be sipping something that warms from the inside out, listening as the constant coffee prep sounds and smells waft through the air? My favorite coffee shop activities include writing and people watching, if I'm not visiting with a friend.

Movies also figure prominently in my life when there's terrible weather. I finally saw "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" this weekend and loved it! Totally cried. It was great!

I've also been getting ready for my brother and my niece to visit the day after Christmas. They'll be staying at my house and I'm pretty excited to host them. Tonight I've been doing laundry, getting their beds ready - I completely rearranged my guest room to make it more cozy for them. In the last year or so the guest room had become something of a catch all room - lots of laundry that never quite seems to make its way either upstairs to the bedroom or downstairs to the laundry and the ironing board and iron always out and ready. I'm thinking the only thing the room needs now is a rug - my entire house is hardwood floors (save for the bathroom and kitchen, which both have tile). Do I dare brave Christmas eve shopping in search of a rug? Heck, I just might if the roads aren't terrible.

So, whatever you've been doing to make it through the season, Happy (late) Solstice and Merry Christmas, a little early. Truth be told, thoughts of that turquoise water and white sand beaches are also helping me get me through.

28 October 2013

Pumpkin Lentil Soup

So I mentioned in my last post that I need to up my food game. So in an attempt to do just that, I tried a new recipe that I'd like to share with you! Since the seasonal debut of Starbuck's Pumpkin Spice Latte, it seems like there's pumpkin or pumpkin spice flavored everything, right? Since seeing this recipe in the September issue of Better Homes and Gardens, I've wanted to try it. I doubled the original recipe and made it vegetarian, but if you want to see the original, you can go here. (You have to log into their site to view, FYI.)

Pumpkin Lentil Soup

1 medium or half a medium sweet onion, cut into wedges
2 yellow sweet peppers, seeded and sliced into strips
1 cup lentils, rinsed and well drained
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger (this is a rough estimate, as I used a heap)
2 tsp. curry powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
salt (the original recipe only called for salt and pepper as seasoning at the end, and I found it in desperate need of salt, so adding as it cooks is something I'd do next time)
48 oz. vegetable stock (I used a 32 oz box and a regular size can)
1 30 oz. can pumpkin puree

In a stock pot, cook onion, sweet pepper and lentils in oil over medium to high heat for 5 minutes, until onions just start to soften. Stir in ginger, curry powder, cumin, stock and pumpkin puree. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer, covered, for at least 20-30 minutes or until lentils are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving. Garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg. Serves 8.

I ended up using a smaller can of vegetable stock in place of the second container of stock pictured. If you are serving a crowd, it would probably be fine to use two boxes. Your soup will just have a bit thinner consistency. 

Getting everything ready. 

Sauteing the onion, pepper and lentils. Make sure you rinse and drain the lentils before adding them to the pan with the onions and peppers. 

17 October 2013

Right Now

...Looking forward to one last event with my art crew in the old public museum in my town this weekend .

...Trying to decide between these two dresses from Free People. I'm kind of obsessed with some of their stuff right now. Dress one. (Very bohemian. I tried it on and it's lovely and made me feel all earth mother, but with an edge.) Dress two. (I love the cut and the colors and pretty much everything else about it!) Don't need either of them, but haven't been shopping in a bit, so feel like I can get one as a special treat! Plus, I can get 25% off on ShopBop until the end of the day - they for sure have Dress One.

...I am freezing. Despite being dressed in seasonally appropriate work attire (sweater, wool crop pants and tall boots) it feels like I'm running around in very little. Why it's so difficult to regulate the temperature in our office is beyond me. I wish they'd get it figured out though.

...Am on my lunch, at the desk because despite the fact that it's freezing inside, it's worse outside! Cold and rainy. I need to up my food game and start cooking regularly again.

...Only three more sleeps until my half marathon! I dropped out of training for this race last year and am really happy that my training has come together so I can run it. I've run this particular half three other times and this is the course where I did my marathon, so it's probably my favorite race ever! There's a really good chance for rain, which has me bumming, but I've been doing my runs all week in the rain, so what doesn't kill me will make me stronger and a bit soggier! Ha!

...Thought this was amazing when I read it this morning. How to be Naked.

...I need a true vacation. Isla Mujeres?

...Listening to this remix by Flume and need a dance party STAT!

What are you doing right now?!

16 September 2013


"There's a science to walking through windows..."


Last one, because I just saw the National this weekend...and they were even more amazing than the last time I saw them.

"The Fall"

  And this.

I had to find this by way of digging through my youtube archive. Did you know they archive like every video you've watched? Helpful, yes, but also scary.


"Everything's Embarrassing"

Pretty much.

29 August 2013

Now: Random

Is there a rom com that tells the story of a girl who likes a guy but he doesn't know it and a different guy who likes her and she doesn't know it?

It's time to do something with my hair. Last time around, I had my gal S do some ombre color and hair cut. The ombre is still hanging out, literally. Maybe needs a refresh, which seems odd because the whole point of ombre is that it looks grown out. Ha! Maybe I try bangs again? Rashida Jones makes them look so cute!

I'm in a huge "get that outta the house" mode. I edited my closet and pulled a whole bunch of stuff that I didn't pull when I changed out my winter clothes for spring. I'm going through every room, every drawer and pulling stuff. I'm building a huge pile of stuff to take to my Goodwill. Feels so good to be clearing things out that I'm not using, that hopefully someone else can. Anyone need a stack of old InStyle mags?

Girls wearing high-waisted short jean shorts. Just stop. They are not cute and nobody needs to see your butt cheeks.

It's hotter than heck on Grand Rapids right now and the humidity is off the chart. And I really want to go for my run, but I don't want to die of heat exhaustion. Getting my miles in before dawn has become a real thing. Much to my surprise, it's actually fun and I've enjoyed getting my miles in and having the rest of my day/evening to do whatever else I want.

This song.

And this one.

Favorite snack for work lately: Smartfood white cheddar popcorn. Apparently it's on a worst snack list of some sort. Whatever.

Have you ever tried brushing your teeth with baking soda? I did recently and it's amazing. While it doesn't exactly taste the best, it does neutralize any taste in your mouth. It's supposed to help whiten your teeth. And the best part is: it makes your teeth feel fresh-from-the-dentist clean. I don't do it all the time, but when I do I brush afterward with my regular Tom's of Maine toothpaste for the fresh minty taste. That pretty much makes me a nerd or something, right?

I finished season two of Homeland last night. Do you watch the show? It's crazy! If you haven't watched it and you need a show, get on it. Seasons one and two are available out there in Internet land and season three starts on TV soon.

That's all I've got. How about you? Tell me something good.

21 August 2013

Roshambo: Paper Scissors

This Roshambo video series from Free People is killing me with its beautiful, lovely moments. This is the third video. I posted the first video back in February and have watched it countless times since that post. Here's the second, in case you're curious!

There's so much said about possibilities. About the future. About the past. About love. About adventure. This series captures so much of that visually. The connection. The looks. The touch. The music. The lighting. The cities.

Might go watch again.

07 July 2013

Loving Life

I was thinking about life tonight at dinner and how I'm probably the happiest I've ever been. I'm generally just enjoying my life. Just being me. Comfortable in my own skin. All that. Digging on all the goodness in life and soaking it all up. Coming off a holiday weekend doesn't hurt either! Here are few things earning gold stars from me these days:

Tracking through a new album. Just got into Flume. Check it out!

Laughter with friends. The kind when your stomach and smile muscles hurt afterward.

Messy hair, don't care. If my hair isn't air drying, then it's full of sea salt spray and dry shampoo for texture. Totally my hair jam this summer.

A new recipe on repeat. I'm all about pasta, fresh garlic sauteed in olive oil, tons of fresh ground pepper and a touch of fresh grated parmesan these days. So simple and SO good!

Fresh fruit = strawberries. Fresh herb = dill. 

Water. Copious amounts. All day. Well, when I'm not drinking an iced Americano...

Biking. Distance. I did a 60 mile ride on July 4. Another 30 mile ride today. Cannot get enough of the bike lately, which is good because I'm barely running. Change is good, right?!

Black and white. Stripes. I can't stop adding black and white stripes to my wardrobe. I saw an older lady today that was the kind of fashionable older woman I want to be. She had a perfect silver, gray bob and was wearing a chic, black and white stripe dress. Stripes forever. Even her husband was on point, no stripes on him, but he was a dapper dude. 

People who make eye contact and smile when you cross paths with them. Even better are the random strangers who chat with you. I had an older gentleman telling me back-in-the-day stories about East Grand Rapids the other evening when I was at Reeds Lake. We're all sharing time on Earth, why not be friendly? Friendly, yes! Creeper, no!

Cool Whip. Why is it so good? 

Mark Duplass. I first saw him as Dr. Brendan Deslaurier on The Mindy Project, but he's quite the indie film guy. I just saw Safety Not Guaranteed and saw Your Sister's Sister. I need to see more of his work, because I'm pretty much loving everything I've seen so far. 

Making jean shorts. I made a trek to my favorite Goodwill store and scored a couple pairs of jeans for super cheap that I  just knew would make the best jean shorts. Low risk, high reward! They will never top my favorite vintage Levi's jean shorts, but I need to start somewhere if I'm ever going to hand down a pair of favorites to my kids. Ha!  My Levi's used to be my mom's or my dad's. I'm not even sure anymore, but I've had them forever and they were well worn and loved when I got them! Best! 

That's all I've got! What's making you love life these days?

23 June 2013

New Summer Slaw

So I've written before about my tendency to become obsessed with a good cole slaw recipe. I think I've found a new one! I peruse Pinterest on the regular for tasty tidbits to try out in my kitchen. I recently pinned this particular recipe (Asian cucumber/Napa cabbage slaw with peanut cilantro dressing). It caught my eye because it looked super simple to make and like it would be refreshing on a warm summer evening. I was right!

I ended up changing it up a bit so feel free to try my recipe or the original linked above.

1 1/2 bags of ready to use shredded slaw mix (cabbage & carrots)
4 small cucumbers (mine were about the size of fat cigars), julienne cut (if you are lucky enough to have a mandolin slicer with a julienne blade, use it!) I just used my sharpest knife to cut match stick size pieces. Leave the skin on.
1/2 cup chopped, roasted, salted peanuts
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup vegetable or olive oil
Juice of one lime
2 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 garlic clove, pressed or chopped
splash of rice vinegar
generous amount of cracked black pepper

Assemble slaw mix, cucumbers, cilantro in a large bowl. In a small bowl whisk together oil, lime juice, sugar, salt, garlic powder, garlic, rice vinegar and cracked pepper. Pour dressing over veggies and mix well. When ready to serve, sprinkle peanuts over slaw to garnish. Enjoy!

12 May 2013

2013 RBR 25K

It happened again! I ran the River Bank Run 25K race for the fifth time on Saturday. I was a little unsure about how this race would come together. I've been running/training pretty consistently since January. I maybe didn't rack up as many miles during the week as I have in past years, but managed to make all my long runs happen. Going into the race, I just wanted to finish and finish strong with a time that I could be happy with.

The forecast was for cool temps and it included rain. The weather for River Bank Run is infamously rainy or threatening to rain. So I've grown to expect that. They said it probably wouldn't rain until later in the day. I left my house wearing long sleeves, capri running pants and my fingers crossed. While it was a bit windy on certain stretches of the course, it DID NOT rain! The temperature was perfect - probably around 45, maybe 50 degrees toward the end of the race.

I started off the race with one my running group buddies, who I happened to spot in the chute. We couldn't find any of our other friends, so we ran and just kept looking. My buddy is faster than me, so once he got warmed up, around the three mile mark heading onto Indian Mounds Road, I lost sight of his neon yellow shorts. So I was on my own in the midst of 6,600 or so other runners!

Indian Mounds is notoriously non-descript. You're on a paved path through the woods next to the Grand River for about four miles, with nothing but tree after tree to your left and right. Thankfully, I think there are two aid stations to break it up, but otherwise, it's you and the trees. My strategy for getting through the woods and most of the race without over-thinking anything was to keep my head down and limit my sight line to the few steps ahead of me. All about staying in the moment so I could stay on pace.

I was pretty happy to find as I passed each official time clock at the mile markers that I was keeping the exact pace I wanted - 10 minute miles. Just after the half-way mark coming out of Johnson Park, I was surprised to run into another running buddy. We chatted into the hills on Butterworth before turning onto Maynard and then drifted apart.

Turning off Maynard back onto Butterworth, there was an aid station with handing out tissues. There was a lady standing there with a box of tissues and she was like an angel! It may seem like such a small thing, but with the cooler air, my nose had been sniffling a bit, so a tissue was super appreciated. So she deserves a huge shout out!

I could tell I was slowing down just a bit, and made a point that if walked at all through the aid stations, that I would try my best to hustle for a bit before leveling my pace off so I could make up the time. It seemed to have worked. When I hit the "one mile left" marker, it was looking really good for me to make my goal time, if I kept hustling.

Another great energy push is seeing people you know along the course! My friend K, her husband and boys were out cheering at the turn from Garfield to Lake Michigan Drive. Seeing them right there as the last few miles were coming together was perfect! A few of the guys from the Running Club were out there along the course giving high fives and cheering. Their presence is always appreciated.

Turning the corner onto Ottawa, I kept my head down to make it up the hill. It's funny to call it a hill, because when you drive that street in your car, you'd never even notice that you're going down hill. It's a one way when driving, but running up the incline after you've run 14 or so miles, you're definitely conscious of the fact that you're going up hill! I just kept running. As I neared the finish line, I heard my mom call my name. She was cheering me on and it worked! I found an extra bit of energy to sprint it out to the finish line, crossing just under my goal time.

My official time was 2:39:24. That's a personal record for me!! I'm so excited!! And get this, it's 14 minutes and 32 seconds faster than last year (I have no idea what happened last year - it was and hopefully always will be my worst RBR 25K time!) I felt great afterward, even jogged on an off back to the car since I had started to cool off and knew I'd be warmer if I wasn't walking.

I'm not sure what's next. Do I go for another marathon? Do I do a few half marathons? If we have another sweltering summer like last year, I can tell you one thing, I won't be racing. The heat it just too much. I'm going to take a few days off, and then get back to my runs during the week and something a bit longer on the weekends.

Grateful for such a good race!

28 April 2013

When one door closes, you get a new window

Last October, after thinking about if for a few years, I finally had my bathroom remodeled. K asked me about it tonight and I realized that I shared pics over on FB, but never posted anything about the process here. So...here we are. Better late than never!

First of all, it was a giant process to just to find a contractor who wasn't trying to finance a new boat or their kid's college education with my bathroom remodel alone. Ugh. Seriously, I had one contractor who gave me a quote that was five times higher than what I actually paid the contractor I ended up choosing. It was ridiculous.

So anyway, the process went so smoothly once I found my contractor and it turned out exactly how I wanted it to. My contractor was great to work with. I think it really helped that I had been thinking about this remodel for years. I already knew exactly what I wanted the finished bathroom to be, so going into it, there weren't a bunch of things I had to make decisions about.

Not going to lie, it was a little dicey to be without a bathroom - this is the only bathroom at Casa Starr Fish. Let's just say I got by with a little help from friends and family. Traveling a few days to New Orleans for work also helped. In all, the demolition of the old and the construction of the new took less than two weeks.

Are you ready to see how it all came together? Who doesn't love before and after images? First, let's look at how yucky the original space was:

Old gross tile in the shower. And yes, behind that mini shower curtain, that's a window in the shower. A regular, wood frame, double-hung window In.The.Shower.

Not for long!!! Along with the wall tile, that window was the first thing to go! 

This is the exact kind of window I had envisioned in all  my bathroom remodel dreams. The contractor just made a larger, wider space for the new window and filled in the leftover space from the old window. I don't have images, but they even did a fantastic job matching the siding outside. It doesn't even look like the old window was ever there.

TaDa! This is how cute the new bathroom looks! I had the lighting updated. Also replaced the old tile floor with new tile. And replaced the old crusty sink with a new sink and sink cabinet.

 Here's a peek behind the curtain at the new window and shower tile. The window and tile make me so happy! It's perfect!

Here's a close up of the sink and sink cabinet and you can also see the floor tile. The sink and cabinet are from IKEA. Originally, I wanted to put a pedestal sink in, but when I was sourcing materials, I realized even the smallest pedestal sink would not fit properly. It would have overwhelmed the space. So this is what I came up with and it's quite perfect. 

So there you go! That's the story of my bathroom remodel. If you have any questions, drop me a line or leave it in the comments.

26 April 2013


Sigur Rós: Valtari on Nowness.com

When I first came across this video months ago, I watched/listened repeatedly. The song is really working for me today. Can't. Stop. Listening.

And the dancers? They make me want to go back in time and take dance classes. Or take them now. Unbelievable!

Oh, and a warning if you're at work...shirts come off at the end of the video, so it's slightly NSFW, but in a really artful way.

16 April 2013

Don't you worry...

Struggling tonight with lots of heavy feelings about Boston, about the state of our world. What it all means. What I'm supposed to do. I was sitting in a quiet house feeling all those heavy feelings and I realized these lyrics were going through my head:

"Don't you worry, don't you worry, child.
See heaven's got a plan for you.
Don't you worry, don't you worry, now"

As kooky or hokey as it might sound...I believe it. I'm having a really hard time waiting...but I have to believe it's all for a reason.

I hope you are well tonight, knowing there's a plan for each and every one of us.

18 March 2013

Now: Music

28 Days by erikino.

Listen/watch. Repeat. Leave a comment if you liked it!

17 March 2013

Currently: The Retail Edition

Happy St. Patrick's Day! What's left of it anyway. Did you wear green? I'm wearing a kelly green top to keep any pinchers at bay. Ha!

So on to what's current: the retail edition.

Since St. Patrick's Day is nearly over and all the stores have been in Easter mode since Valentine's Day, I have a new Easter candy to tell you about. Vanilla Creme Marshmallow Peeps! I was at Tarjay yesterday and did a quick walk through of the snack area and peeped these new Peeps! I'm a pretty big fan of regular Peeps, so much so that I did not want to buy the package of 12 or whatever, because I'd likely eat all of them. So when I saw a package of three Vanilla Creme Peeps, I was intrigued and they jumped in my cart. My review in one word: delicious! I highly recommend if you're a Peeps fan!

Do you have a favorite mascara? I got a sample of Benefit's They're Real! Mascara from Sephora. My favorite, tried and true mascara is Voluminous False Fiber Lash Mascara from L'Oreal, but I do love to try a new product. So I've tried They're Real! a few times now since I got the sample. The brush has strange, plastic-y fibers that I haven't quite gotten used to. Once it's on, it actually looks good. It doesn't clump, but I've also noticed that it flakes a bit during the day, so you end up with tiny black specks on your cheeks. That's not cool. Maybe I'm doing it wrong? I'm going to keep trying it out here and there to see if it can completely win me over. What's your go to mascara?

Grand Rapids is now home to a Home Goods and a newly relocated TJ Maxx. From all the traffic you'd think the stores were giving away $100 bills to everyone who walked through the door. I managed to grab a parking spot in the heavily crowded parking lot and took a gander at what the fuss was about. The stores have separate entrances, but are connected, since they really are the same store. The Home Goods just has more of what the normal housewares section of our old TJ Maxx had.  It will be nice to have Home Goods as an option for house things. The TJ is a lot nicer and more spacious than the old location just across the parking lot, unfortunately though no $100 giveaway! No purchases were made. Will wait until the hype dies down, so I can browse in peace!

I opened with a sneaky sugar snack, which was a total treat since I'm trying real hard to keep to healthy eating these days. I've long been a fan of almonds as healthy snack. I recently came across these 100 calorie snack packs of cinnamon roast almonds by Emerald Nuts. For some reason I can't find a link to them, but trust, they are yummy and the perfect snack size. Do you have a go to healthy snack? Do share!

11 March 2013

Now: Music

Music is totally one of my things. I listen to music pretty much all the time and although I don't play an instrument or arrange music of my own, I'm captivated by other people's musical creativity. I've been that way as long as I can remember. One of my earliest musical memories is from before I was in kindergarten, so I was probably three or four. My parents were playing some classical music on the stereo and I started crying and told them to "turn off the sad music." Clearly, I connected with music on an emotional level at an early age.

My musical taste now is all over the place, as evidenced by what's high up in my current musical rotation:

  • Torches by Foster the People. I've been running to this album for a few weeks.
  • Unapologetic by Rihanna. I had heard a couple singles and thought, "meh," but hearing the whole album, it has grown on me.
  • Saturdays=Youth by M83. This is mostly super chill, hipster music that would make good rom/com movie soundtrack music.
  • Lula Divinia by Shiner. This one's a throwback. I used to listen to it a ton, but somehow lost the CD. I recently procured it again, so I'm catching up! 

I'm usually an iTunes on shuffle kind of gal, but for some reason I'm into the start to finish thing with these particular releases. 

Also here's a couple random songs I've also been digging:

San Tropez by Fyfe: 

Sail by Awolnation:

Like? Don't like? What's got your ear these days? 

10 March 2013

Weekend Uniform

Does your hoodie match the rug like mine does? Ha! #favoritecolor

Do you ever get so enamored with an outfit you feel like you could wear it forever? That's where I'm at with this outfit. Call it my weekend uniform. I wore a variation of it last weekend and this was Saturday's outfit. I realized that it's pretty much screams teen skater boy. Right?! I posted a pic of the hoodie/hat combo last weekend on instagram and got some random likes from the 20 and under crowd. Kind of hilarious considering how old I actually am. But I love that I can still pull this off. It's comfortable, yet I still feel pulled together and stylish.

Shoes: Wedge high tops from Target with a a little stud detail on the velcro strap.
Pants: Skinny gray cords that I've had for a few years.
Hoodie: From the boy's section at Target. No joke. I love it though.
Jean jacket: BCBG Maxazria Jeans.
Hat: Calvin Klein from Nordstrom Rack. Picked it up after Christmas and pretty much have been wearing it non-stop since.

What outfit are you rockin' on repeat?

04 March 2013


One of my favorite hashtags on Twitter is #notclearon. Since I'm not limited to 140 characters here, I thought I'd share some of my favorite (or not, as the case may be) items and situations I'm not so clear on. Then, if you're feeling it: leave one or two of yours in the comments. Or if you have an explanation to one of mine, feel free to leave that in the comments as well. Maybe we can clear some things up!

People who don't shovel the snow off their sidewalks. #notclearon You might not walk on them, but believe me, other people do or try to and then have to move it on over to the street, which is sometimes more dangerous than the prospect of slipping on an icy sidewalk.

People who put an invitation out on FB or Twitter for people to join them for some activity then back out when people step up. #notclearon Why even put it out there for the world then?

Bloggers who post outfit pics of themselves in the snow, but they don't have a coat on. #notclearon The  coat makes or breaks an outfit and posing without one in at least one picture is just lazy fashion blogging.

Supposedly nobody likes to talk on the phone, but everyone driving is talking on the phone. Who are they talking to? #notclearon

Shows or movies without likable characters. #notclearon

Why hasn't someone figured out how to teletransport yet? #notclearon I want my particles to be able to zip here and there whenever I want to see my fam and friends or the world!

Not setting an out of office notice on work email and voicemail. #notclearon

Week four Harlem Shake videos. #notclearon

Let's get clear! What are you wondering?

02 March 2013

Toaster Dreams

I've been watching BMW motorcycle videos on youtube. Admit it, you totally do this too! This 1972 BMW R75/5 (Toaster tank) is beautiful! I want one someday, or something a little smaller since I *am* a lady. This particular bike is bad ass and so much cooler than anything built since.

The sound of these bikes is so distinct! Add it to the list of reasons I want one someday. You could blindfold me and start up a few different bikes and I'd be able to tell you which one was the BMW.  It's such a sexy sound.

Overall, the design and engineering are top notch. German engineering, yo! This model is considered a vintage bike, but they're known for their reliability.

I want!

01 March 2013

Favorite iPhone Apps

Before I switched from a Droid phone to my iPhone 5, I had app envy. My friend with iPhones would be talking about apps they're using and loving and I had no frame of reference since many apps did not have a version for Droids. But then..it was finally time for me to upgrade. I've had my iPhone since the end of October and feel like I've gotten settled in well enough to talk about some of my favorite apps.

Instagram. So if you've got an iPhone, you've gotta have Instagram. I can't stress how much I love this app - I love the idea of documenting the things you see throughout the day, and seeing what everyone else feels is worthy of instagramming/sharing. All the different filters are fun to play around with too. I usually rock #nofilter, but usually flip through all of them looking for the best lighting/effect.

My Fitness Pal. Someone at work told me about this app about a month ago. Admittedly, today is only my second day using it, but so far I'm hooked. Basically it's an app to help you track your daily calorie intake and exercise. When you get started, you have several different options for what you want to accomplish, whether you want to maintain your current weight or lose weight. Then, essentially it's a diary that you can keep track of everything you've eaten, your exercise and even your water intake. To say that the database of foods is vast would be an understatement. And it's easy enough to add a food if you don't find a suitable match in the database. I entered my homemade hummus yesterday.

Voxer. This can be used in a walkie talkie type fashion with friends - talking back and forth, but you can't talk at the same time. Or if you're not on voxer at the same time as your friend, you just leave your voice message and they can listen to it whenever and reply at their leisure. I have a friend who's in Australia right now and it's fun and free way to keep in touch.

Starbucks. If you have a Starbucks card, essentially the app takes the card's place. You load money on it just like you would a card. It keeps track of all your Star Rewards as you make purchases. They send you messages about the week's free music download and promotions.  And the best part of all, instead of paying by swiping your card, you bring up the payment screen and they scan the money off your phone. Sweet!

What are your favorite apps? I feel like there are so many more that I should have, but don't! Do share!

16 February 2013


This is what it's all about.





14 February 2013

Greatest Love

Valentine's Day story from my Tar-jay run at lunch.

In the parking lot, I  could hear music coming from a white Lexus SUV that was searching for a parking spot. As it got closer, I could hear Whitney's "Greatest Love of All" emanating from the vehicle. The lady driver must have been at full volume. Not your everyday car jam, right? Then I thought, "oh, I guess that's fitting. It is Valentine's Day after all."

I wouldn't call myself a Whitney fan, but will say from my childhood, I'm pretty sure I know all the lyrics to that song. The children are our future, right? Back in the day when I was a kid listening to that song I don't know that I was really paying much attention to the lyrics. It was just a fun song to sing along to. Here's the thing, as a kid these lyrics must have set in:

 "Learning to love yourself. It is the greatest love of all."

Seeds planted all those years ago, that learning to love yourself business has been a big lesson in my life. I agree 100%. They say, you can't love another if you don't love yourself. And someone who doesn't love themself cannot fully love. Can't argue with that.

Happy Valentine's Day from my heart to yours.

29 January 2013


This is me right now:

Feeling a bit of wanderlust. Plans to hit Coachella did not come together this year. Tickets went on sale today and I am somewhat sad that I'm not going. The line up is RIDICULOUS, but am now seeing not going as an opportunity to spend the time and money elsewhere. Just have to figure that part out.

Obsessed with ankle boots. I've been looking for a pair for a while and have found TWO! Of course! Friend at work told me that I should just get them both, because "you don't splurge on anything, really." Um, talk me into it - as if I needed the help! And I just had the thought - "think of all the money you're not spending on Coachella this year."

 Sam Edelman Myron Ankle Boot

Ella Moss Print Ankle Boot

Online dating? It's been a few years since I briefly (very briefly) tried it. I've dated a couple gentlemen in the meantime that I met in real life. Considering the online thing again since I am not sure where or how I'm ever going to meet the "one" in real life, so it's back to the thought that increasing my odds might not be such a bad idea. Except...except, people seem to be in two distinct camps when it comes to online dating - they either love it/have met their match or they have creepy tales of how horrible it is. Toss of the dice. As with anything in life. So whatever, right?

Wondering "why are dudes like this?" "Like how they are." So I actually do meet dudes in real life. To date, many have ended up being super random. I've pretty much given up trying to figure anyone out. Dudes, y'all are random and I don't even know.

Where are the band aids? I burned my finger pretty badly putting something in the oven over the weekend. Have been putting neo sporin on the burn and keeping it covered with a band aid. I used the last one this morning. You know what? There are a lot of band aids in one package. I certainly am not accident prone, but somehow I managed to use them all up doing who knows what to myself. If I had to guess, there would be lots of band aids used for running/shoe related injuries. Ha!

Back on the mat. Tonight I'm going to an actual yoga class. It's been ages since I've been to a class. I'm excited and sort of anxious about it. What if I don't remember the poses? Then I'm like, dude, it's yoga, go with the flow. So that's what I'm going to do. Oh, and I painted my toes, so at least I'll have cute toes! ...so I just got back from class and it was AH-MAZING! Hot yoga, yo! It felt so good. I think it's going to be a great way for me to cross train during running season. Already have a plan to go back! My arms feel heavy already too - can't wait to feel that good-after-work-out hurt tomorrow!

Digging grapefruit. So why do I love grapefruit so much this winter? I bought a bag of them this weekend and have been eating one a day since. I thought I'd end up giving my mom and her hubby some, but they already had some and now I'm happy they didn't want them. I want all of them. So tart and sweet. Why don't I like to drink grapefruit juice then? If it's not straight outta the fruit, I don't want it.

That's all I've got for now. Gonna drink some more water so I don't wake up with muscle cramps after sweating like a beast in yoga tonight.

02 January 2013

Happy New Year, Ninjas!

Another year and here we are. Happiness and new year's blessings to you!

I'm not much into resolutions. This is more my speed: every day is a good day to be the best person I can be, learn new things, meet new people, be healthy and generally find ways to keep life interesting.

Heading into 2013, I'm looking forward to more running, more travel, finding more ways to be creative and keeping my heart and mind open to new experiences.

What are you looking forward to this year?