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8.29.2014

NOPE + Guest Post!!

Top: Kohls | Pants / Flats: Old Navy

Ughhh, I really didn't like this outfit much at all.  I think this top is so pretty, but it looks pretty awkward on me!  Ah!  I tried tucking it in, but that looked super weird and awkward.  Now that I look at the picture, though, leaving it untucked wasn't much of an improvement, haha.  I just kind of feel like this outfit makes me look like the mayor of Frump City.  Oh well.  I think next time I wear this blouse, I'll try wearing it with a skirt so that I can tuck it in, or maybe with another layer on top of it to keep it from looking too boxy.  What would you have done with this outfit to make it look a little less awful??

Also, I'm guest posting on Anne's blog about my experience doing a shopping freeze for the past three months.  Check the post out here!

8.28.2014

Gray + Maroon + White

Dress / Cardigan: Old Navy | Belt: Target | Shoes: Kohls

This outfit isn't the most exciting one I've worn, but I kind of liked it.  I have had this white cropped cardigan for awhile now, but I haven't shown it on the blog yet.  I wanted to wear my gray sleeveless dress to work, but I'm uncomfortable wearing sleeveless things to work, so a cardigan was necessary.  Because it was hot, I felt this lightweight cropped cardigan would be a great option, and it was!  I wanted to add a little color to the outfit, so this maroon belt completed the look.

I apologize for the poor lighting in this photo, by the way.  It was pouring in the morning, which is when I usually take my photos), so I decided to take my pictures after work, resulting in a big old shadow, haha.  Oops.

8.27.2014

I Bought Something.

Skirt / Top: Lucky Brand, both thrifted | Sandals: Target

So, I've been doing a shopping freeze since June 1.  My main motivations for not shopping were to save money and to really be happy with what I already own.  Up until a couple of weeks ago, I had been doing wonderfully on my shopping freeze and hadn't bought a thing in three months (I haven't bought anything since mid-May, actually!).  I did make a stop into Goodwill a couple of weeks ago because I was in need of some summer shirts that could also be worn to work.  I gave myself a $20 budget.  I wound up trying on a ton of different things - dresses, skirts, pants, shirts - but wound up with only this cream shirt and a white v-neck tee in perfect condition.  The tops together cost me $4 apiece, which brings me to a total of $8 spent in three months.  Not too shabby, eh?

I'm feeling really proud of myself for making it three whole months without buying anything, and then sticking to items that I really did need to give me some options to wear to work (aside from this shirt, I honestly only had about three short-sleeved shirts that I feel comfortable wearing to work).  I still have no desire to go shopping, despite the fact that I live 5 minutes from a great outlet mall.  I do have some rewards at Old Navy/Gap that I need to use up before too long, but I'm planning to wait for some good sales and really figure out what it is that I need in my closet (jeans, I think...).  I also want to find a pair of black boots before it gets too cold, but I am waiting until we're into fall a little bit to make that purchase (as a reminder, a new pair of black boots is one of the exceptions that I am allowing myself to purchase this year).

I am estimating that in the last three months, by not spending money on clothing, I have saved around $350-$500 (or maybe even more...), based on previous months of shopping.  To me, that gives me the greatest source of motivation.  Knowing that that's $500 I have in my pocket to put towards student loans or rent is a wonderful feeling, and it makes me want to continue with my shopping freeze.  I'm pleasantly surprised that the freeze has been this easy for me.  I'm also happy to report that the freeze has, indeed, made me feel much happier with what I already own (so happy, in fact, that I'm going to be linking up with Anne in the next week or so to try a work capsule wardrobe...but stay tuned for that).

I'm linking up with Fran and the other budgeting bloggers!

8.26.2014

Casual + Professional, Warm + Cool

Top: Old Navy | Skirt: Bettie Page | Shoes: TOMS

My school district has a mentoring program for all new employees, and I wore this outfit on the day all the new teachers spent the day with our mentors.  Luckily, my mentor is one of the other counselors on my team, so I've gotten to know her a little bit over the course of the summer.  We had a great day together, going through the process of enrolling new students and what I should expect for the first couple of weeks of school.  I click with her so well, and she was very affirming that I have been doing a great job so far.  Whew!

I have only worn this skirt one time since it was featured in my winter 30x30 remix in January, which I hadn't really realized until I began outfit planning for the school year.  Whoops!  I do really love the skirt and it couldn't be more comfortable with the stretchy waistband (elastic waistbands are a godsend, right?!).  I love the dark gray color, and decided to pair it with this white + navy polka dot blouse that also hasn't been worn nearly enough.  Some navy crocheted TOMS and a navy floral headband tied everything together.

These workshop days have been kind of tricky to dress for, because I want to look casual to fit the tone of the day, but also put together enough to show that I am a professional as well.  We also were in the midst of a wave of wickedly hot and humid days, but spending our days in the air conditioned basement of the high school, so I wanted to make sure I was comfortable for multiple temperature changes.  I think this outfit fits all the criteria: the skirt and button up are nice enough to fit our school's dress code and address the temperature issues, but it is casual enough for me to be ready to learn and work.

8.25.2014

It Begins

Top: Target | Pants: Old Navy | Wedges: Payless | Necklace: From my mom

I wore this outfit to my first day of New Teacher Workshop last week.  We spent most of the day in meetings and trainings, but I still felt comfortable and professional all day.  [Also, y'all need to try out  the Pixie ankle pants if you haven't yet.  Just saying.]  I haven't worn my ankle pants very much (or at all?!) this summer, so it was really exciting to have a reason to wear them!  I have several pairs of these pants, so I am eager to give them all a ton of attention this fall in my new job.

I also really loved the colors of this outfit as well.  Clearly, the teal pants steal the show (at least in my eyes!), and I wanted to keep the rest of the outfit in a neutral color scheme with a white top and black accessories.  I'm pretty sure that almost every time I've worn these pants, I've worn black and/or white with them, so I would like to try to branch out at some point.  We'll see, though...I am kind of married to my neutrals, haha!

8.24.2014

Weekend Wear

It seems to me that most style bloggers that I read and follow tend to post their work and weekday outfits.  Since I always am curious about what bloggers wear when they're "off-duty," I wanted to show you what I wear on the weekends!  Both of these outfits were worn last weekend.

Top: Gap, hand-me-down from my best friend | Shorts: Old Navy | Cardigan: TJ Maxx | Sandals: Payless

I've mentioned before that my cousin is pregnant and having her first baby, a boy, this November.  On Saturday, we went to her baby shower, and this is what I wore!  I knew it would be a somewhat casual affair, so I didn't want to wear anything too fancy.  I wound up wearing my favorite black shorts (seriously, these are SO COMFY) and a black studded sleeveless blouse.  To add a little color, I added my coral cardigan.  While I love how the black and coral look together, I feel like the high neckline of this blouse and the v-neck cut of the cardigan look a little goofy together (kind of like this outfit from my 20x30 challenge).  Now I know just to stick with scoop neck and v-neck tops when I wear this cardigan from now on!  The outfit was otherwise very comfortable, and I felt like it was quite appropriate for a casual baby shower.

Shirt / Shorts: Old Navy | Sandals: Target | Necklace: From my mom

The next day, Sunday, was dedicated to enjoying my last day of summer, since I began my new job the next day.  On my "to do" list for the day were reading through my high school's course registration guide and student handbook, organizing my work bag, catching up on blogs, and hanging out with Kevin and the pups.  Since I'm gross, I totally wore the same shorts from the day before again (we all do this, right?).  Again, I wanted to keep the outfit fairly monochromatic, so I wore this black 3/4-sleeve top that I have had for years but have been sorely neglecting and added gold accessories for a little shine.  I actually really liked this outfit and definitely plan on wearing it again.  And it reminded me of how much I love this top, so get used to seeing it a little more often!  It will transition into fall quite nicely!

So, these two outfits show a pretty good representation of what I tend to wear on the weekends.  A little casual, a little comfortable, a little sparkle for good measure.  What about you all?  Do you have any weekend outfit staples or requirements?

I'll begin posting my work outfits this upcoming week, which I'm excited about!  I have had fun putting them together, and it feels wonderful to be in work clothes again!

Have a great Sunday!

8.21.2014

Camel + Olive = Match Made in Heaven

Tank / Vest / Jeans: Old Navy | Sandals: Target | Necklace: From my mom

This tank is one of the most under-appreciated things in my closet.  The color is wonderful and it is so soft, but it usually only gets worn as a camisole rather than as a top, as I did here.  I wore it with my green military jacket back in April when I met Andi, but I thought I'd give the look a try with a more summery outfit.  What do you think?

8.20.2014

Summer Uniform, Part 2

Top: Calvin Klein, thrifted | Jeans: JCPenney | Sandals: Target

I mentioned on Monday that I've been wearing a lot of cuffed jeans with tanks recently.  This outfit was another that fit the formula of that summer uniform, minus the scarf.  I have gotten tons of wear out of this tank since I thrifted it nearly a year ago - other than my favorite Old Navy tanks, it's only one of two sleeveless tops that I have!  I feel like this is a section of my wardrobe that is certainly lacking, and once my shopping freeze is over (or if I use some rewards and gift cards), I'd really love to focus on getting some more sleeveless tops like this one.  They're perfect because they can be worn alone like this, or layered underneath cardigans, jackets, and blazers (but you all know that...haha...).

8.19.2014

Sparkly Mint

Dress: Cynthia Rowley | Shoes: Converse

I bought this dress ages ago and hung onto it to wear for my graduation in May.  I decided to pull it out again recently to wear to the Minneapolis Fringe Festival.  One of my dearest friends, Emily, wrote two shows for the Fringe, and I wore this dress to one of them.  The show was hilarious and I wish I could have seen it again!

I especially love this dress because not only is it very comfortable and flattering, but it can be worn in so many different ways and for different occasions.  I've kept it accessorized very minimally in this outfit, but I am eager to wear it with a belt, blazer, or cardigan as the temperatures fall over the next couple of months.

8.18.2014

Summer Uniform

Tank / Jeans: Old Navy | Sandals: Target | Scarf: Gift from my friend

So, I've basically been wearing outfits just like this on repeat over the past several weeks.  Up until this past weekend, we've had an uncharacteristically nice summer in Minnesota - I'm talking low humidity and temperatures in the 70s and 80s.  Perfect, right?!  I definitely have been taking advantage of the great weather by wearing the heck out of my skinny jeans and tanks with lightweight scarves.  This outfit actually has been worn three times already (and I almost never repeat outfits), including when I went to family camp with Kevin's parents.

[Also, I start my new job as a high school counselor today!  We're just doing new teacher workshop today and tomorrow, but I begin enrolling new students and doing schedule changes on Wednesday!  I'm hoping to post some of my work outfits starting next week, if I can get my act together!!]

8.13.2014

Black & Lime

Tank: Old Navy | Skirt / Sandals: Old Navy | Jacket: Levi's

This, like yesterday's outfit, was worn before my 20x30 remix challenge.  It's been sitting on my desktop for such a long time, just waiting to be blogged...so here it is.

I loooved this outfit.  I've talked a lot about how drawn I've been to neutrals over the past several months, and it still stands.  I do, however, often like to bring a little color into my outfits.  Lately, it's been mainly through accessories, but in this outfit, I added some color with my lime green and white printed skirt.  I really love how black and lime green look together (perhaps it's because I love Wicked so much??), and it's surprising to me that I haven't worn this skirt with black yet.  There's a first time for everything, eh??

8.12.2014

Currently...

Shirt / Shorts: Old Navy | Shoes: Target

Making: many trips to my new office to get it all set up for the school year.
Cooking: new vegetarian recipes (I went full vegetarian about two months ago!).
Drinking: water, water, water.
Reading: Jurassic Park...because I'm a huge nerd.  But seriously, it's SO good, and I think dinosaurs are cool.
Wanting: to try out roller derby.  Also, another tattoo.
Looking: at my darling puppies staring out the window.  They're in their happy places as long as there's a window.
Playing: lots of Monopoly and Clue with my nanny girls.
Wishing: for all individuals struggling with mental illness to receive the help and assistance they need...and that there was no stigma against mental health disorders.  (Robin Williams' death is making me so sad and heartsick.)
Enjoying: spending meaningful time with Kevin before we start back at work and school.
Waiting: patiently for my best friend's baby to be born in September...and my cousin's baby to be born in November (but keep cooking, little boys!!).
Liking: getting to wear all the things in my closet...remix challenges are fun, but I like being able to wear all my clothes!  Haha.
Wondering: if I'll be a good school counselor.
Loving: yogurt raisins.  I eat a handful (or two, let's just be real...) every day.
Hoping: that I'll be able to find a fun form of exercise that will take me through the winter.  Any suggestions?
Needing: regular paychecks and our new health insurance.  Woo!
Smelling: the brown sugar cinnamon coffee cake Kevin put in the oven for brunch.
Wearing: shorts, and not hating my body in them...PROGRESS!!
Noticing: how much I have changed over the past several years.
Knowing: I'll be supported in my new job.
Thinking: about all the great TV shows Kevin and I have cranked through this summer (Orange is the New Black, American Horror Story: Asylum, the first season of Breaking Bad, and the first six seasons of The Office - anyone else rewatch their favorite series over and over again??).
Bookmarking: all kinds of school counseling ideas.
Opening: and closing my shopping cart on various store websites.  It's been nearly 3 months since I've bought anything, and I'm starting to feel the itch to shop again...more on this later...
Feeling: stressed to the max, but happy despite it all.
Giggling: at pictures of baby seals.  I mean, seriously? SERIOUSLY?!

This list has been circulating the internet for a long time, but I first saw it on The Daybook.

8.08.2014

20x30 | Recap!

Whew, I made it through another remix challenge!  I'm super proud of myself for remixing the same 20 pieces over the past month.  I've learned so much about my style and closet over the past year and a half and after successfully completing three remix challenges.  For instance, I enjoy coming up with new outfit combinations that I haven't tried before, and I like learning how to make the most out of the items I have.  It's a great reminder to me that I really don't need to have a lot of things in my closet to create a wide variety of outfits for different settings and situations.

A few thoughts about the outfits and my specific pieces:
  • Favorite outfits: 13, 14, 21, 26, 30
  • Least favorite outfits: 7, 8, 10, 17, 20
  • MVPs of the challenge: My green vest and denim shorts, each of which were worn six times.
  • Favorite item of the challenge: My floral skirt (worn four times) and pink & white striped dress (worn three times) helped to create some of my favorite outfits.
  • Least worn items: The light pink lace top, white lace top, and navy & white striped top, which each got worn twice.
  • Biggest challenges: I had to create "nicer" outfits for going in to work at my new job a few days as well as plenty of casual outfits for nannying.
Also, I think I might be getting rid of some of these items after the challenge.  The white skirt, while so cute, gets very wrinkly, which I find to be quite annoying.  I may keep it around for a while longer since I don't have many work-appropriate skirts, but it may not make it.  The navy & white striped top has a hole in the sleeve (not on a seam...like in the middle of the sleeve), so I'll have to get rid of that one too.  The light pink lace top is so pretty, but it is way too boxy on me for comfort, and since it is sheer in the front and back, it probably isn't work appropriate.  I got a marker stain on my mint shirt while nannying one day that won't come out, which is such a bummer - I love that tee!

So, there you have it.  Another remix challenge complete!  Do you have any favorite outfits from this challenge??  Do you think you could wear the same 20 pieces of clothing for a month?  I'd love to hear your thoughts and reflections!!

8.04.2014

20x30 | Thirty Outfits?! Done.

Top / Shorts: Old Navy | Sandals: Target

Sorry about the poor photo quality here - I took this picture at about 6:00 am before driving up to nanny (I nanny about an hour away from where I live).  The sun wasn't up, and there was a bluish glow to the original picture that I tried to edit out as best as I could.  I really love the simplicity of this outfit.  The light blue top and black shorts look sharp together, and kept the accessories light.  To be quite honest, I have worn this outfit twice in the last two weeks, something that I never do, haha!

Top: Old Navy | Skirt: LOFT | Scarf: Gift from my parents | Flats: Payless

This is an outfit that I had come up with right at the beginning of my 20x30 remix, but didn't get around to wearing it until the very last day of the challenge.  After a somewhat failed attempt at mint + coral/pink early on, I am glad I chose to retry the combo.  I love how fresh and summery the outfit is.  The mint, coral, and white look like they were made for each other!!  What do you think?  Did I get it right this time?


Here are the last six outfits of my 20x30 remix - I can't believe the 30 days are already up, and that I was able to successfully complete the challenge with just 20 items!  I'm hoping to put together a recap post later this week.  I also may put together a little packing post.  I'll be away from home (nannying and going to family camp with Kev's family) for the next 8 days, so I'll be living out of a suitcase.  I'm bringing along a couple of pieces from my 20x30 items, because clearly I can't get enough of them ;)  Would you be interested in seeing what I've packed?

Thank you all for following along with my 20x30 challenge - it's been a fun one!

Linking up with Caitlin and the other remixers!

8.01.2014

20x30 | So Attractive...

Tee: Target | Vest / Jeans: Old Navy | Flats: Payless | Necklace: From my mom

1. Yes, I'm wearing my green vest again.  SHAMELESS.
2. I love love love how black and olive look together.  I feel like every other outfit that I pin has black and olive in it.
3. It was hella windy outside this day, so not only did I need Kevin to take my photos (my phone kept blowing over in the wind), but I needed to take them indoors...so here is our zebra painting (the zebra's name is Josh, by the way).  Also, don't mind the extension cord.  We're not classy.

[Photographic evidence of why we needed to go inside for photos...every single one turned out as ridiculous as this one...you're welcome.]