September 30, 2014

what we found on the walk

bixby didn't think this was nearly as cool as i did, but all of those little round things are mushrooms!  it rained just a little bit and all of a sudden a million of these along this section of the sidewalk popped out of nowhere.  guess they were just waiting for a rainy day.  this morning when i walked past most of them had shriveled up and turned black or were just gone completely... mushrooms are funny things.

September 29, 2014

things that are exciting

work is very very boring today and i've already had my afternoon popcorn plus i banned myself from the candy bowl (except for one tiny tootsie roll to test my self-restraint) and i just don't think i can schedule one. more. meeting. right now so i might do a little day dreaming over the four (four!) packages i am waiting to come to my house because i got a little overzealous with online shopping.  and by overzealous i mean practical because the things i am waiting on are 1) halloween costume parts, 2) a stripey shirt ordered specifically for my fall wardrobe capsule, 3) another stripey shirt ordered for my capsule because the theme of forever is stripes and also a dress because that is the other theme of forever and it was buy one get one 50% off and i am not one to pass up a deal (see: the immense amount of captain morgan i bought in a fit of whimsy), and 4) FLASH TATS!!!  this is the most recent purchase so it's currently the most exciting.  shakori hills is coming up soon, and as soon as i saw these temporary tattoos i knew exactly when and where i was going to use them.  shakori is a music festival and the rules are: camp! dance! decorate your face!  except this year i can take it to the next level and decorate my face AND my wrists AND my legs AND whatever other skin is showing with these shiny happy tattoos.  previously i've done face paint and previously before that i've done rhinestones but this year i'm going above and beyond and everyone will think i'm about the coolest festival-goer they've ever seen.
i ordered the pack with these things in it as a throwback to the days when i was obsessed with ancient egypt and also cause it's still way cool.  that skinny bracelet up there?  totally going across my forehead.  watch out shakori.

beach day

so i went to miami earlier this year, but i hadn't made it to a north carolina beach, which is Bad and Wrong, so when sarah said, "wanna go to the beach next weekend?" i said, "yes!"

so on saturday, she and i and sarah also and bixberoni piled into sarah's car rose and headed east.

(are his nails too long?  they look too long.  but i will not be the one to cut them.)

we pit stopped at an arby's-cum-dunkin donuts for all the necessities and hit the road round two and then BEACH BEACH BEACH.

we found a spot away from all the fish hooks and jumped around in the water and plopped down on the sand and maybe did a little dozey stuff.  bixby did like the the seagulls, did not like the waves, did like barking at everything and pulling on his leash a lot, did sit on my head with his sandy butt when i was trying to nap.  and then it started sprinkling but fortunately this beach included a covered gazebo so we moved our party there and i made some progress on a storm of swords (yes, i jumped on the GoT bandwagon, sorry not sorry) and we ate gummy bears and generally had a really splendid beachy time. 

side note: the dog friendly part of the beach was also a historic site but my suggestion to hit up the museum was entirely shut down.  plus they probably don't take kindly to dogs.  buuut we got to hear their cannon go off every so often, which was exciting!  and startling!  

so then it was 4:30ish and we wanted to Do Something but it was too early for dinner so we drove downtown and found the best parking spot and used the smelliest bathroom (even bix was like "what the hell guys," and he didn't even go in) and marched ourselves up to a place with outdoor seating and they said they didn't allow dogs on the patio and the only place they knew of that did was in carolina beach and was called the lazy pirate.  so we decided that was probably not true and walked across the street to jack mackerel's and actually it was true but we could tie bixby up to the railing as long as he was on the other side of the patio as the restaurant.  so he chilled in the parking lot while we were there and alternated between dejectedly laying on the stones and whining at me.  the rest of us, however, ordered margs and had a lovely time (is there any other time to be had when you're drinking margs?).

we sat on the pier and watched a kid flirt with the ocean and talked about what we wanted our actual careers to be (i'm like 75% joking when i say i want to be a stay-at-home mommy blogger but the 25% that isn't joking is very much real).  i've said it before and i'll say it again, but mid-twenties is a very unsure limbo-y time.  no, i don't want to be the front desk girl forever, but also no, i don't know what i want to do instead.  and then we snuggled a little bit and bixby said "HEY" and we said "you can snuggle too."

by then it was coming up on dinner time so we decided to venture over to the lazy pirate.  we got there and it was quite a thing - volleyball, live music, cornhole, picnic tables, fake grass, the works.  i heard someone complaining about "a DOG in a RESTAURANT" which seemed unfair since we weren't even inside the restaurant, we were just walking on the fake grass.  we asked if dogs were allowed and they said yeah but we had to go to the back porch area and we wouldn't have a server, we'd have to just order from the bar which also seemed unfair but we went back there and the menus were disappointing and overpriced so we decided eff this and i found a couple locals who recommended michael's seafood, which was just three blocks away, but turns out we don't actually know what a block is and we're not even certain they're applicable outside gridded cities.  so we walked FO-EVAH and got to this place and they did allow dogs and even though they didn't serve anything fried (where are my damn hushpuppies, this is a seafood restaurant, you are letting the south down) our opinion was that it was delish (pasta alfredo ftw!  creamsicle drinks ftw!  martinis ftw!).

and then we walked all the way baaaack to the car and sarah drove us safely home and we all agreed it had been a Great Beach Day, even/especially bixby.

the end.

September 26, 2014


you know those days that are just kind of delightful?  yesterday was one of them.  i got about 90% of what i wanted to get done at work done, checked up on every thing i have ordered online recently, and killed some logic puzzles (why am i so obsessed with these?).  i also ate two/four granola bars, depending on how you read the packaging, applesauce, leftover chinese food, sour cream and onion chips, a coke, popcorn, one million tootsie rolls, and four giant tervises (teehee all over that word) of water flavored with pink lemonade drops.  i think my bear-like instincts are kicking in and i am fattening myself up for winter.  soon i will hibernate.  i mean, i don't even like tootsie rolls that much.  yesterday, i did.  today, i am banning myself from the entire candy dish.

then bixby and i ran errands.  the walgreens by my house doesn't have any signs that say "no dogs allowed" so for a thrill, i bring him in with me.  what a rebel, right??  nobody has ever said anything, even the white-haired guys wearing walgreens vests instead of blue polos, which i assume makes them managers or something.  he even put his paws up on the pharmacy counter and all the pharmacist said was "hey doggie!"  although i'm pretty sure the guy in line before me was giving bix the stink eye.  we went to the pet store and got a new bag of food, two bully sticks, a vanilla mint flavored bone that's supposed to be good for his teeth, and a giant, nasty, oily, flaky, meaty bone that probably came from a cow or something, and this kid tried to pet him while he was eating it and he actually growled at the kid, which never happens, yikes.

ryan is back after three months from new zealand/thailand/japan and korea and singapore and various other parts of asia because he is a globe trotter now and we went to noodles & co and he got mac and cheese and i got something off the mediterranean menu because we are both pretty predictable and then we walked uuuup franklin street into carrboro and back dowwwwn franklin street and talked about what had happened since the beginning of july (kind of a lot!).  bixby was pretty much an angel, which wore off as soon as we got home and he went batshit and decided it was a good idea to run from the living down the hall to my bedroom, slam into the wall, and dash back into the living room, all while making the weird barky-growly-howly noise he does when he just DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO HANDLE HIS EMOTIONS, which is honestly how i feel a lot.

and then kaitlin and i had fall night, which meant that we wore sweaters and watched sweet home alabama and drank cider with fireball in it (holy yum) and ate gingersnaps and pumpkin spice cookies (holy double yum), aka had a fantastic time.  she had somehow never seen sweet home alabama, which happens to be one of my absolutely favorite chick flicks with some of the best/most quotable lines ("lookit the SIZE a that thang!" is one of my all time faves), and somehow it feels like a fall movie, even though technically i think it's set in august.  i get so caught up in summer and Doing Summer Things that i forget you can also Do Fall Things, like, lots of Fall Things, and although i've never had a fall to-do list, it may be time to start.  it'll include Corn Maze and Making A Shit Ton Of Pumpkin Seeds.

final note: bix is way into squirrels and when i walked him this morning, he saw one crossing a power line and stood like this for a solid minute or two, watching and waiting.  he's so awkward, but like dog like owner i guess.  we're going to the beach tomorrow (!!!) and i kind of can't wait to see him completely spaz out over a seagull.

September 25, 2014

trips to the farm are always too short.  seven of us made the trek out to western virginia a couple weekends back, smushed all of our air mattresses together in one big old room, talked about boys and music and college and life and things, and things, and things until we fell asleep.  we woke up and followed the drive all the way down to the river, right between the field and the mountains.  erika dove in first, because she's erika, and the rest of us slowly edged our way into the water, right up to our waists, most of us.  it was cold and probably one of the last times we could have stood the temperature.  back to the barn, to the house, to the little town nearby, little clifton forge, a one-street mecca.  we ate lunch and walked slowly slowly up the street and back the street, going into a clothing store and an antique shop and the art gallery, touching things with our hands, chatting and laughing and chatting and laughing.  then dinner at becky's house, and every time sally is there too, plus the dogs, and a tiny kitten that we all chased around.  it started to get windy and then it started to thunder and we could see the rain coming down the mountain so we packed up and moved inside and they fed all of us bbq and coleslaw and pickles and ice cream and emily told her stories.  there's just something soothing and rejuvenating about a weekend with girls, you know?  danielle creamed everybody in cards against humanity, and we drank cheap wine (thanks lauren!), and then one by one we drifted into bed until it was just me and sarah, even though we see each other more than anybody sees anybody else in that group, talking late late.  in the morning we gorged ourselves on penny's (waffles and hot chocolate, yes please!) and cleaned and everyone had to be home really soon so we hugged and said how wonderful it had been and let's do it again soon and drive safe and i love you i love you i love you all.

September 24, 2014

wardrobe capsule

a couple weeks ago, i found this style challenge through this blog.  the idea is a minimalist closet - thirty-seven articles of clothing - that hones in on your particular style so that every outfit you wear feels extremely, extremely you.  not to mention decluttering and de-stressing your life.  i was intrigued.  and then i went home and counted my dresses and was like holy moly i have thirty of these how the HECK would i pare my entire wardrobe down to 37.  so i decided to forget it but the idea stuck in my head and yesterday i found myself enthusiastically tossing shirts into a "probably give this away" pile.  i might be cheating - i'm not counting clothes i wear exclusively to work, running clothes, dog walking clothes, pajamas, dance clothes, accessories, extra extra fancy stuff... - but i've got a list of 37 items (14 tops, 3 skirts, 5 jeans, 7 dresses, and 8 pairs of shoes) that i will be wearing and wearing and wearing again this fall.  and that didn't seem like a lot, but when you consider that i can pair almost every top with almost every bottom, PLUS dresses, not to mention the different tights and scarves i can wear with everything, i come out with a whole lot of outfit possibilities, and all of them are made up of clothes i actually 100% love.  and maybe now i'll do something with my hair besides an elsa braid?!  (nah)

who knows - maybe i'll hate it - but i figure i'll just stick with it for a couple months, and then see if i want to update to a winter capsule.  it's not like i'll need my tshirts anymore...and then i can break out the sweaters...oh man, the planning might be the best part of all this... whatever the outcome, if i cheat, if i cave and buy everything like a credit card-wielding shopping monster (let's avoid that one actually), it's a new thing, a new way to approach fashion (if you can call what i wear fashion) with a lot less clutter and a lot fewer dollars.  my shopping growing up was fairly limited to the thrift store, which is all well and good if you do it right, but it took me years to figure out that quality is greater quantity and if you buy 20 things you only sort of like you'll wind up happy with none of them.  so this is sort of a reverse reaction to that - low low low quantity (relatively speaking) with a focus on quality and likeability, for the lack of a better word, for instance, my $10 target vee neck tshirt may not be the highest quality, but it is soft as heck and matches ALL my bottoms and looks great with a scarf, so i anticipate wearing it at least once a week this fall.

hey natalie (who is possibly my absolute favorite blogger right now) suggested a pinterest board, and you can believe i followed that advice.  my capsule board is here, and about 90% of it is stripes and scarves and fit & flare dresses:
so when i have my capsule 100% hammered out, i'll post pictures of the clothes (fascinating?) and then later maybe pictures of some of the outfits i put together (even better?!).  i am by no means stylish, but what the heck, i'll give it a shot. 

September 9, 2014

in college they tell you a lot of stuff about life after graduation.  they talk about the workplace and about grad school and expectations and if you're lucky they'll talk about how to find and apartment and do your taxes.  they talk about things that can be attained through hard work and checkboxes.  they don't tell you how incredibly weird and lonely it is and how few friends you'll have.

i wouldn't say this so openly if i hadn't had the same conversation via text or phone or skype or whatever with pretty much all my close friends in college.  you graduate, and your friends dissipate.  nobody's having hall parties anymore.  there isn't anyone to whisper-giggle with in class.  there isn't class (unless you're in grad school, i'm not i don't know what it's like).  you can't run downstairs and say YO BOYS IT'S B4D LET'S GO because nobody lives downstairs from you except a lot of spiders in your crawlspace, and they don't get as excited about breakfast for dinner.

point is, making friends after school is not easy.  places i've tried to find friends: bus, dog park, ballet class, coffee shops.  places i've actually found friends: reconnecting with people i knew in high school, people that happened to move to the same place i did after college, friends of guys i dated (warning: these friends may be temporary).  that about covers it?  so when sarah was like "i'm going to frisbee now!" i was like "PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF PETE TAKE ME TOO."

and it worked.  there are like a billion and a half people to be friends with there.  athletic, sociable, easy-to-talk-to recent grads, and i love it and i love them (too soon?  oh well).  i'm not the best frisbee player but i can go out there and have a blast if the environment is right and if the environment is cute friendly guys and cute friendly girls then the environment is right, which is lucky cause that's what everybody seems to be.

point is, if you graduated from college within the past couple of years and you're still floundering around for things to do and people to do them with, 10 out of 10 join an ultimate group.  they're full of good people.