You made me a woman, George Michael

In sixth grade, I wanted nothing more than to dance with a guy named Kevin to “Careless Whisper.”

I made it happen too.

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Eleven years old and small for my age, I didn’t show many signs of impending young womanhood yet.

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Five hundred things I bought in 2016

One of the unexpected upsides of my surgery and recovery? I became an expert-level online shopper!

OK, maybe that’s not something to celebrate. Does anyone really need to spend more money? Probably not.

But I got some great stuff and I thought you might like some of it.

For fun

Recently I bought a plane ticket back to Saint Martin. I loved it so much the first time. After the year I have had, these plane tickets are easily the No Regret-iest things on the whole list.

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I got Hamilton tickets. Yep, the play is as amazing as I had heard. And – lucky me – I am seeing it again in January. Tickets are my Christmas present to my mother.

For my face

I made it to Sephora’s VIB Rouge level this year. Oops. That means I bought a lot of skincare and makeup products.

I started using eye cream – and bought two of them. Because did you know that you should not use regular eye cream on your lids? APPARENTLY. I’d be mad about buying two, however the lid-specific cream is so good at reducing eye puffiness after yet another business trip that I can’t complain.

But I also bought this inexpensive lipstick (16). 100% my favorite.

Update: I’m in love with this.

For my apartment

I got these lampshades via Joss & Main. Not my most exciting purchase (made on Cyber Monday no less), however I love the way replacing my old yellowing lampshades with crisp white changed the light of my bedroom.

I am loving the Pottery Barn duvet cover I purchased to go with this new bed (similar options here) and dresser. Also this pretty framed print from Society6 which is hanging over my bed until this larger print arrives to take its place. And this elephant throw pillow which reminds me of my wonderful aunt, who loved elephants.

It took buying three sets of curtains to keep one. These from Overstock looked nothing like the picture – way darker. I can’t really say why I didn’t like these from Bed, Bath & Beyond – I just didn’t. They sat on my couch for about three weeks while I tried to warm up to them.

Finally I found these in Cool White at JC Penney of all places – not sure when I last shopped there. But I’m really happy so it’s a good reminder to be open-minded.

To wear

As you know, I adore this jacket. And I hate that it’s too cold to wear it right now.

This Marc Jacobs bag is awesome. I use it probably 75% of my work days so I don’t feel at all bad about splurging. I love this bag.

I just bought these Sam Edelman shoes on Bloomingdales.com but depending on your size, they’re cheaper on Amazon. Every year, my company holiday party rolls around and I don’t have any great shoes to wear. This year, I wore some ugly old pumps that wouldn’t even stay on my feet. Apparently I need straps of some sort at this point in life.

Along those lines, I got these pink Birkenstocks. I swore I would never have Birks, but here I am, loving them.

Update: this shirt as a show of support to Nordstrom.

I should have bought five of this Feminist t-shirt. These next four years are going to be challenging.

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To eat

I accidentally bought an entire case of this popcorn. Fortunately it’s delicious.

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For everything

I invested in an Amazon Echo. My friend Mark‘s tweets made me feel like I needed one. Alexa is a great companion for work from home days.


Did I actually buy five hundred things this year? Probably not. But there are times when it felt that way. My hope is that I will be so busy in 2017 doing fun, exciting things that online shopping will no longer be my chief entertainment.

To offset my consumerism, I also made philanthropic donations to several organizations including the Women’s Resource Center of Northeastern PA and Dr. Paul Forfia’s Pulmonary Hypertension research.

I’m considering supporting the Pulmonary Hypertension Association too.

Where am I?

Less than an hour after I checked in, I got the email.

We see where you are departing tomorrow and hope that you had a wonderful stay here at _______! We realize you have many options when traveling and appreciate you choosing to stay with us.  We wanted to reach out to you and ensure that everything with your stay exceeded expectations.  On behalf of the staff, we wish you a safe trip home, and we hope to see you again sometime soon!

Soon after, the airline sent me an email suggesting I check in for tomorrow’s flight now.

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Where am I?

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My favorite James Corden segment (not Carpool Karaoke!)

I really like James Corden and his show. Let’s face it – most things are genuinely better with a British accent.

Corden’s Carpool Karaoke segments get a lot of love, but it’s this Spill Your Guts or Fill Your Guts video that cracked me up more. As a picky eater, I cringed too

 

I thought it would be a basic Truth or Dare-type bit where the dare is to eat something gross. However it’s so much better than that. The questions are beyond awkward to answer – for example, Niall Horan is asked “who is your least favorite member of One Direction?”

This iteration of the bit is even better because it’s two versus two–if your teammate declines to answer, you both eat the gross item.

I thought we could all use a laugh right now. Enjoy!

My New Year’s plans involve a giant kiss off to 2016

I had just assumed that 2016 would end on one high note – the Bowery Collective‘s annual festivities. And I would have been perfectly content to do so. It’s a beautiful, fun gathering with amazing food and drink.

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But then, one of my friends from my July vacation asked “any interest in going back to Saint Martin for New Year’s?”

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The perfect sweater – via @Athleta

For someone who loves Sweater Weather as much as I do, I struggle to find the PERFECT sweater, seemingly over and over again each winter.

I am never Satisfied.

(Sorry, I am presently listening to this song from the Hamilton Mixtape on repeat.)

The perfect sweater to me is one that just works whether I’m going to a movie with friends or running errands. It’s comfortable and yet stylish, a step up (at least) from your nicest sweatshirt. The perfect sweater can’t be itchy or too tight or so loose it makes me look like a trash heap.

After a few wearings, I often decide something is wrong with the newest sweater. The sleeves or body are too short. It isn’t soft enough. The material has pilled. It shrinks with laundering. Etc.

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Image via totallystitchin.net

Recently I had a week-long business-and-personal trip and, as usual, I packed poorly for it.

I had business in Dallas (somewhat warm), and then flew to Scranton (via Charlotte) for a night before driving to Pittsburgh with my mother. Pennsylvania temps were noticeably cooler than Dallas – DUH. I had only brought my new motorcycle jacket as outerwear which was stupid given that we were going to be outside a lot, including at a nighttime outdoor football game.

So I went shopping in Pittsburgh and luckily I found a new favorite sweater (as well as another coat. More on that later).

Athleta’s Ravine Tunic is my Perfect Sweater. I love its relaxed fit and loose turtleneck. It keeps me warm, but not too warm. And because it’s a wool blend, no itching!

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Via Athleta

I got the sweater in black which has, unfortunately, sold out, but it comes in other colors. I’m buying the white for sure, and maybe the red too.

Athleta has some other great items. I want these pants for lounging around, and am waiting for this cashmere tunic to go on sale

Here are a few other sweaters with Perfect potential:

Via Splendid, DVF, Target, Madewell, Etsy and French Connection

Motorcycle jackets are over

I wanted a moto jacket for years. Black, leather, classic. So what if I’m not cool (anymore?) and don’t ride motorcycles.

I knew I was opposed to suede. And I didn’t want a color. Although I had a flirtation with a dark pink Haute Hippie one, because you know me and pink.

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The challenge? My long torso and a desire not to spend a gazillion dollars on another coat. I have a lot of coats.

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