Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Grooveshark picks for June

Artist: Act As If
Album: The Iron is Hot - EP
Why I love it: I love stealing music ideas from other bloggers like Jennifer. She mentioned them on a recent post, so I had to check em out. It's good old fashioned easy listening mixed with a few "get excited" type of songs. (I'm sure this description makes zero sense to anyone but me.)
For fans of: Of Monsters and Men, One Republic

Artist: John Mayer
Album: Born and Raised
Why I love it: Just when I've completely given up on Johnny (yeah, I call him Johnny. That's normal, right?) he goes and creates a phenomenal record like this one about trying to (finally) grow up. I love that, like his first album, several of his clever lyrics seem to closely mirror my own thoughts lately.
For fans of: John Mayer, Ray Lamontagne and the Pariah Dogs

Artist: Enoch Light
Why I love it: Major kudos to Natasha for turning me on to Enoch Light. Because of her blog post, I checked him out and this is some seriously rad stuff. So retro and hip. I feel like I am pool side in LA in the 1950s. 
For fans of: Swanky music. (I am new to this genre so I have no idea what similar artists would be)

Artist: Givers
Album: In Light
Why I love it: It's fun and upbeat and so far it's always been able to put me in a good mood.
For fans of: Florence and the Machine, Ra Ra Riot, Local Natives

Artist: Twin Sister 
Album: In Heaven
Why I love it: It's got an underlying tone of the 80s. Not too much, but just enough.
For fans of: Tennis, Blouse

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Back of the closet: 1970s choir dress

I bought this fantastic 1970s choir dress (that's what these are called right?) a little over a year ago at a Goodwill in a small town. I've worn it maybe a handful of times, but I felt like since I've had it for so long it still qualified as a "back of the closet" post. So I grabbed a couple of fun different accessories and decided that was enough to piece together something that felt "new" for just another Thursday at the office. I like that adding a couple of different accessories qualifies as a new outfit for me!

Here's the cheapskate outfit breakdown:

1. Vintage choir dress, thrifted ($2.99)
2. Platform sandals, Charlotte Russe ($16.25)
3. Bag, gifted (thanks Joy!)
4. Gold hair accessory, Urban Outfitters (??)
5. Statement earrings, gifted (thanks mom!)
6. Bangles, gifted (thanks Ashley!)
7. Vintage flower cocktail ring, gifted
8. Gold disco cocktail ring, ATL market ($4.00)
9. Thumb ring, Charlotte Russe ($2.99 - part of stackable set)
10. Sunglasses, Forever21 ($5.80)

Total: Under $50

Photos: Laura Menconi

ps. I broke my arm at the climbing gym last night. yeah awesome. So this means there prob won't be an outfit post for a while and my regular blogging might be intermittent as well. Oh injuries.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Free fun: Lunch and learn at the Gardens

I do not have a green thumb. Instead it's pretty much the opposite, I think it's black. I have been known to kill hosta and yes, even a cactus. Trust me, I know how sad pathetic impossible this is.

But if I were to actually have a "way" with plants, I would totally crash this FREE lunch and learn session at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens on Wednesday July 27th from 11:30 - 12:30. Actually I might still crash it for the free drinks and dessert! Ok, I'm kidding, I'm not that cheap (or am I?).

So if you're interested in learning how to use native plants in your garden and landscape design, then this is the class for you. Truth be told, I am interested. My yard could use a little bit of help. But it's probably in the plants' best interest that I don't even bother. I don't need more dried up brown plant deaths on my conscience.

What: FREE seminar on how to use native plants in your garden and landscape design
Where: Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Hodges Room
When: Wednesday June 27th from 11:30 - 12:30
Other: Bring your own lunch. Drinks and dessert are provided.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The dish on Framily

I've been giving a lot of thought to my blog lately. Maybe too much. Mostly I waver on the idea of whether I should keep it up or not. Not because I don't love doing it, I totally do. It's just a lot of work and a lot of time and so I start to wonder if maybe I couldn't be doing something more "constructive" with the time it takes to plan outfits and photoshoots and scour the internets for deals and steals. You know, something like volunteering. Or studying my Bible. But in reality I think I know I'd just use that extra time to either hang out with friends or spend it crushing struggling improving at the climbing gym.

So ultimately, the blog continues to win (for now).

This means I spend the other part of this 'blog thinking time' of considering that if I do keep up the blog, how can I make it better. So I started thinking that it seems that I don't share much personal info with you guys. And how can I connect with readers if I don't share something a little bit about me other than what type of clothes and accessories I like and how little I like to spend on them?

That's why I've decided to do a new column called "The dish" once a month where I will dish out just a little something on who I am and what's really going on in my life. Excited? Yeah, you should be! (sarcasm. it doesn't read well online does it?)

So this month's dish that I am sharing is about my framily. I have a super close knit group of friends and we refer to ourselves as framily. Because we are just friends, but we're so close that we consider ourselves to be family, too. So put it together and boom, you've got framily.

I love these guys. I think back to my mid-20s to present day and I think about how different I am because they have been such a positive influence on my life. They keep me grounded. They hold me accountable. But most importantly, they make me laugh along the way! I truly can't imagine where I would be now without them in my life.

Sadly we all have to grow up eventually and the past couple of years or so we have been a little bit split up with some of us here in Birmingham, others in NYC and others in North Carolina. But no matter how far apart we are, we manage to make time for each other.

We email. We call. We text. We skype (ok, so not as much lately, we need to work on that!). We visit each other. And we use abuse the heck out of an app called GroupMe that allows us to all be on one huge long text thread that we can all see and chime in on.

Sometimes you feel closer to each other than other days, but I never feel too far away. And honestly, there have probably been times when we have been too close and all up in each other's business! But you know, that's what framily does. We care, so we intervene. And it's always done in love. And I am thankful to have friends who love each other so much that they will tell each other when they think you're making a mistake, but are there for you in spite of those decisions.

And that's my love letter to my framily.

I miss you guys and I am excited that most all of us will be together soon for the upcoming holiday. Em, quit your fabulous new job and join us! Kidding of course, but you know you'll be missed. We'll just have to skype you in!

ps. I also have other amazing friends that aren't technically part of the "framily" but that doesn't mean I don't love or appreciate them any less. You know who you are!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Takeout containers

Ok, I realize that after I make this post, I am going to seem like the most ridiculous cheapskate (and, ahem, perhaps a bit of a hoarder?!) ever. But honestly it's less about saving money and more about doing the little things to help save our planet.

I've mentioned before about how I have a hard time throwing away containers like glass jars so I like to wash out anything I purchase from the grocery store and find new ways to use them. Well, I have pretty much the same sentiment with any plastic takeout container that is sturdy enough for reuse.

Basically one day I got Chinese food and was surprised to find the container for the chicken was a pretty fab plastic tupperware type of piece. I decided I couldn't throw it away or put it in the recycle bin, but that I should instead wash it because it was the perfect size for using to take leftovers to work. Then one day at work I got sushi and I started to trash the container but immediately retracted and took it home to wash and reuse instead. There's nothing like taking home a dirty takeout container to make you feel like a crazy tight wad! Oh well, I am who I am I guess!

But I've found that these containers are my absolute favorite way to bring salads to work. They are just the perfect shapes and sizes. So before you trash your next takeout dish, stop and think if there's another way you could reuse it. You could pack your lunch in it, use it for tools or arts and craft storage or anything really. The possibilities are endless.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Splurge on: Beach bound essentials

It seems like everyone I talk to these days is heading to the beach for the 4th of July holiday (everyone except me that is...wah wah). Or they have been at the lake every weekend. So even though I am lucky if I can squeeze in some pool time (at a place where I "hop the fence!"), I figured I would still do a splurge post  for those of you who actually have some beach or lake assets. That's just the kind of girl I am!

1. Old Navy Splash Print Bandeau Bikini, $12.99 each ($25.98 total)
2. Pendleton Turquoise Trail Spa Towel, $48.00
3. Xhilaration Voile Swim Coverup Dress in white, $26.99
4. Urban Outfitters Jupiter Round Sunglasses in green, $14.00
5. Women’s Beston Tommy in beige, $33.45
6. Vintage Beach Canvas Beach Bag (on Etsy), $33.00