Saturday, November 29, 2014

Rain Boots

Yesterday in my Dear Santa post, I mentioned I was looking to buy some rain boots.  After Tuesday's expedition, I came to the conclusion that when it rains it Florida, it pours.  Literally though, not figuratively.  And I don't really want to worry every time about ruining my good boots slogging through puddles.  After putting way too much thought into the outfits I wear for rainy days, it just seemed like it might be a good idea to have a pair of rain boots to fall back on.  And just for fun, I looked back through my blog posts at all the times I've written about dressing for rainy weather.  Here's the list.

1. Outing in the Rain: November 25, 2014
2. Weatherproof Look: November 17, 2014
3. Highway Driving: March 24, 2014
4. Staying Dry Outfit: May 5, 2013
5. Rainy Day Style: February 26, 2013

Since I live in the Sunshine State and not Seattle, I think an inexpensive pair will do the trick so when hubby and I went to Walmart yesterday evening (still Black Friday, but way after the crowds have gone home to nap) I checked out their shoe section, hoping they would have at least this pair of rain boots, since they aren't exactly in season right now.  They did have that pair, but I was rather disappointed in how they looked.  I wasn't looking for anything fancy but these looked more like something you would wear to muck out a horse stall than something you would wear to be dry and still kinda cute.  Luckily, I was surprised to find that my Walmart actually had quite a few options for rain boots in my size.  First, they had tons of these really cute leopard print ones but I wanted something that was plain, just so I didn't look any more like a child than I already do when I wear them.  These cute polka dot bow boots were fun but were a little shorter than what I wanted, as they came only up to about mid calf.  And then in a glorious red box, I found the perfect rain boots!  *Cue angels singing*

How cute are these?!?  Plain black with bright pink soles!!  And even more unbelievable, they had them in my size, they fit with plenty of room for my calves and even for a bulky pair of socks to keep my feet warm, and they were less than what I had originally budgeted.  It's clearly shoe destiny.  But then it gets even better because they were marked with a price tag of $16.97 but they rang up as only $13.88!!  I don't know if they were on sale or what but I love me a pair of rain boots for under fifteen bucks.  After going back and scouring Walmart's website, it appears they are listed here as Color Pop Rainboot but the online photo shows them in all black so I guess maybe it's the wrong photo?  And they are listed on the website as originally priced at $19.97 (currently on sale online for $18) so I really feel like I got a bargain.  I'm happy as a clam and I can't wait until it rains again!

And to show you how excited I am about these little wellies, here's some pictures of me being awesome in my boots, inside my house on a day with no rain, wearing an old hoodie, dirty hair in a bun, no makeup, and kind of greasy skin.  Keepin' it real.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Dear Santa

If I were going to write a letter to Santa this year, here are some of the fun, functional, and frivolous things I might ask him to bring me.

Dear Santa,
     I've been quite good this year.  I've worked hard at my job and tried my best to help my students and the other teachers as well.  Here is a list of things I've had my eye on, in case you were wondering.

1. This warm and cozy electric blanket from Target.  Even though I live in Florida, I'm a total wimp for the cold and this would keep me warm and cozy on those chilly nights.
2. A pair of black rain boots would make trying to stay dry on rainy days a lot easier and fall into the "functional" category.  These are really affordable and available at my local Walmart, so they might just be coming home with me tonight after we pick up some groceries and our Christmas tree, especially since the forecast is calling for quite a few days of rain coming up soon.
3. This plaid blanket scarf from Target that everyone else and their mother has.  A blanket that is socially acceptable to wear in public?  Yes, please.  If I lived some where that was actually cold, I would definitely own this by now.  Sort of silly for Florida though.
4. An adorable petite chambray shirt dress, from Loft.  I've been on the lookout for one of these for about a year now and probably tried on at least ten and hated the way every one of them looked on me, because not one was petite size so everything fell on me in weird places.  But I think it would be the easiest piece to remix ever.  Dress it up, dress it down, layer it.
5. This incredibly cute, nerd-worthy Hobbit Door Necklace from Amazon makes me squee!  How cute and unique!
6. I ♥ Cats Slippers from Amazon.  Just saying... I need some new slippers and these are warm, affordable, and oh-so-me.  My pets approve.  If you're more of a canine companion person, they have these cute pawprint and bone ones too!  Or choose from coffee themed or cocktail themed slipppers.
7. If you're not a Hobbit nerd, maybe a Harry Potter Hermione Time Turner Necklace would be more your thing.  Personally, I love both and would be more than happy to geek out with either of these fun necklaces from Amazon.
8. A hooded poncho from Shoptiques would make for another cozy, socially acceptable blanket to wear... which is totally frivolous when I can't wear it to work without attracting sidelong glances.  I'm pretty sure I could easily make one for myself with the yards and yards of fleece fabric hanging out upstairs, but I would probably wear it once like the poncho I made a few years ago that is currently serving as a cat bed.

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!  What fun things are on your Dear Santa list this year?

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Outing in the Rain

I've been on Thanksgiving break since Friday afternoon and honestly, I've been loving it.  I took several hours on Sunday and Monday to clean the house really well, which was well past due.  Today I spent a good bit of time altering some clothes that weren't a perfect fit.  When hubby got home from work, we had plans to go over to Kohl's and use our Kohl's cash before it expired and then grab a bite to eat before hitting the grocery store to pick up a couple of last minute things we needed in order to make Thanksgiving dinner.  And then this happened:

Rain.  But there was no way I was going to let my Kohl's cash expire without using it (I'm not wasteful, you know) and there was no way I wanted to go any where near a grocery store tomorrow so we had our little outing in the rain.  And the cold... well, cold for Florida at least.  Have no fear!  I had all day free to plan a rainy day outfit to keep me warm and dry.  And I had time to make a cool diagram to accompany the outfit!

If you are wondering where I got any of these pieces, here's the info:

hooded cargo jacket: J.C. Penney, last year [similar]
skinny jeans: Walmart [exact]
scarf: Walmart
T-shirt: Target
boots: Belk [exact, cognac shade]
cardigan: Papaya
baseball hat: Rue21

And here's what the outfit looked like in the dressing room of Kohl's!  I stayed warm and dry the whole time we were out and about, through lots of running from the car to the curb.  :)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Quick Break

I knew today was going to be a busy one at work so I took a couple of quick photos during a break and now after tutoring I'm whipping up this quick post. Must be quick so I have time to shower before The Big Bang Theory!  So I'll just say that I'm loving this plaid scarf. It's the perfect weight for Florida and goes well with grey or black and works well to jazz up a boring cardigan outfit.

black T-shirt (under cardigan): Kohl's
charcoal cardigan: Papaya
straight leg jeans: Loft Outlet
black ballet flats: GH Bass Outlet

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Hot Coffee

I know lots of areas are experiencing unusually cold weather this week so I thought it was a perfect time to share a tip I like to use to keep my coffee hot.  Today was sort of a weird day for me.  I didn't go to work because I had to get blood work drawn this morning and I have a dentist appointment this afternoon.  I always have to fast before my blood work, which meant I had to start the day without coffee.... bad bad news for a caffeine addict like me.  I'm not a fan of buying breakfast and coffee while I'm out because it's just so many more calories and money than breakfasting at home.  Also, I had to run errands after so I couldn't just come home and eat.  I packed a quick PB&J to eat and brought some coffee.  A few quick tricks meant that even after driving to the lab and getting my blood drawn, my coffee was still hot, even though it was seriously cold outside.

1. Be sure the coffee is hot when you put it in your to go cup.  I microwaved mine first, since it was warm but not hot by the time I left my house.
2. (If possible) Use a to go cup that is metal on the inside.  For me, I find these keep my coffee hot longer.  I love this one that one of my students gave me as a gift a few years ago.
3. The biggest tip is that I let the faucet run until the water is hot and then run the cup under the hot water until it is hot.  That way, when you pour your coffee in it, the heat doesn't transfer to the cup and leave you with cold coffee.

I did this at 8:30 this morning before leaving my house and drank about half my coffee around 9:00, after my blood work.  It was still hot then.  I drank the other half around 9:45 after running errands and while it wasn't hot any more, it was still more than luke warm.  Not bad, considering it was in the 30s here this morning!  What tips do you have for keeping warm in the cold weather?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Weatherproof Look

Today I was all proud of myself for going to such extent to weatherproof my look.  I mean, check out the visual!  I had things under control!  Or so I thought.  Then today happened and I realized that you can weatherproof your look but you can't weatherproof your life.

I took the photo above early this morning in my classroom.  Today was forecasted to be one of those weird days in Florida.  Not so chilly in the morning when I left for work but we were supposed to reach a high of about 80 around noon and then the rain was supposed to come, causing our temperatures to plummet for the rest of the day and landing more than forty degrees below that.  Turns out I had no idea what a hand the weather would play in my day.  My look worked out great but my nerves were shot!

Around lunchtime, this is what the sky started looking like.  An hour before this it was sunny but my iPad and iPhone were popping up all kinds of crazy watches and warnings (for the record: tornado watch, severe thunderstorm warning and a hard freeze watch, which I didn't even know there was such a thing).  And about an hour after that, the school where I teach was put on severe weather lock down and then the fun began.  We had to close our shutter blinds for safety so I couldn't see what was going on outside but my students were freaking out, thinking a tornado was coming.  Once I finally got them all settled down and back to work, the power went out and we were with only emergency lights, although the lights and power in other classrooms and the hallway outside my door were working.  After school tutoring was not cancelled (even though when it started, I had been without power for an hour and a half) and as tutoring began, the entire school lost all power, phones, and even emergency lights.  Soooooo I was trying to teach in the pitch black.  Thank goodness for iPads and cell phones that still work when the power is out!  It was a draining day but I was just happy that my students and I were all safe and sound.  I hope the same is true of you, as I know much of the country is experiencing some crazy weird weather right now.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Shopping My Stash Again

Shopping my stash last week turned out to be a good way to start my week, as it was fun to spend a few extra moments on myself and to enjoy putting on my makeup again.  To avoid getting back into a makeup rut again, I decided to shop my stash for another week.  After seeing this pin, I was inspired to use some of the products they listed that I already have.  Also, I want to try to decide on just a few products to take with me on my holiday travels so I'm experimenting with some different blushes and shadows.

First, some blushes:
Milani Baked Powder Blush in Rose D'Oro
Milani Baked Powder Blush in Corallina
NYX Cream Blush in Glow
Wet N Wild Blush in Mellow Wine

And then some eye shadows:
Wet N Wild Trio in Walking on Eggshells
Wet N Wild Single in Nutty
Maybelline Color Tattoo in Tough as Taupe
Avon Eight In One Eyeshadow Palette in Neutral Tones

Thursday, November 13, 2014

I'm Choosing to be Happy Again

I'm not really sure if it's been apparent to anyone out there just reading my blog (unless you are adept enough to have gotten the hint here), but I've been very unhappy lately.  After an emotional meltdown last week, I really started to reflect on my life at the moment and the lack of happiness in it.  Let me explain.  I am a very calm, collected, logical, rational person and not that emotional.  (Think borderline Vulcan, but with a sense of humor.)  In my house, hubby is the emotional one and that works for us.  So when I came home after a particularly long and rough day and realized that I had allowed my car's registration to expire, I just lost it in one of those moments of "I just can't handle anything else in my life right now and I'm so unhappy all the time and I'm thinking every decision I've ever made in my life besides marrying you was the wrong decision, wah wah wah."  Phew, deep breath.  Luckily, my husband is wonderful and he most definitely was a good decision so his response went something like this, "Ummmm... I'm not really sure what's happening here because I'm supposed to be the emotional one and you're supposed to be the level-headed, logical one so I'm just going to say what Pam would say.  'It's going to be okay.  We'll get through this like we get through everything else - together.  You just had a rough day and tomorrow will be better.  Now pull yourself together, take a deep breath and let's figure out what we need to do to fix this problem.' "  And because I have a sense of humor, that just cracked me up and made everything better in that moment.  I love that man.

But I still couldn't shake that feeling that something in my life was just wrong.  So I really started thinking to myself about what was different and I quickly came to the conclusion that I have just chosen this school year to not be happy.  There have been a lot of changes in my school and my district this year and it's been more work for me and also some changes that I don't really like but I've chosen to be unhappy.  I've made the decision to complain, whine, mope, and be depressed.  This is so unlike me.  As far back as I can remember (my mother says my whole life) I have been a very happy person, even in hard times.  But this year I've really allowed myself to just wallow in self-pity and misery.  I'm deciding right now to end that.
November seems like a good month to be grateful so I'm taking some time to remember things that I'm grateful for and stopping the "no fair" party now.  Here are ten ways I plan to change my attitude and be grateful and happy about the life I'm living:

1. Instead of being depressed that I live so far away from my family, I'm going to choose to be happy that I have the ability to FaceTime with them every Saturday morning, now that I have an iPhone.  I've spent more time in the last three weeks talking to my parents and being able to see them than I usually get to spend with them when I am in town.

2. Instead of being upset that I don't get to live in Pennsylvania anymore, I'm going to be happy that I get to live with the man I love and that I get to spend every evening with him.  I might not get to see the fall leaves changing, but I have fond memories of falling in love with him in the backdrop of our home town and now I get to make even more memories that are basked in sunshine, clear skies, and palm trees.

3. Rather than dwell on how much money I could have been making with all my talents, I'm going to be happy that I'm putting them to good use.  I make a difference every day in the lives of my students and they want to come to school to learn with me and have fun.  Last week, the Superintendent of the district I work in even came to my classroom for a photo op with my students and me because he had heard so much about the amazing things I'm doing with iPads in my classroom.  After less than a year of being a 1:1 iPad classroom, that's something to be really proud of and happy about.  I don't think I would be making that much impact if I was just fixing computers all day.  (If you remember my earlier post about the Lucky Dress, I was actually offered a job that day working for the IT department in my district.  I ended up passing on it, after my parents convinced me that I wouldn't feel as fulfilled fixing computers as I do teaching.)

4. Rather than sitting on the couch all weekend, being lazy and miserable, I'm going to get out and do things that make me happy.  Shop with a friend, go out with hubby, whatever it takes.  We started last weekend by attending the football game of the high school he works at.  He has been blessed to be teaching at a beautiful new high school this year and it was great to finally get to see the school.  Even though it was freezing (for Florida), we had a blast cheering on his school (they won!), snuggling together to keep warm, and I even got to awkwardly meet some of his students.  It was so fun and didn't cost us a dime. 

5. When I have to work long hours, I'm going to be happy that I have the opportunity to tutor and earn more money so I can go home to see my family for the holidays.  When I have to work long hours on Wednesdays at our Professional Learning Community, I'm going to be happy that I work with such fun people that when we get together, we still have fun while we do our work.

6. When I'm at work at 6:30 in the morning, instead of sitting at my desk grading papers and hating life, I'm going to turn up the music and sing along to some of my favorite songs while I work.  Music makes life better.

7. I need to spend less time on the Internet and more time living my own life.  Seriously, if you spend too much time on the Internet, you will start to hate your life.  Or your body.  Or both.  Everyone else's life (and butt) seem more glamorous than yours on the Internet.  And spending too much time on Pinterest makes picking out clothes stressful.  It makes me feel like I have to be so "put together".  Sometimes I just want to wear clothes I like and call it a day instead of feeling like you have to have this, that or the other to have a complete closet.  Coveting material goods never makes me happy and just leaves me broke and with too much stuff.  It's easy to get jealous of others and forget all the amazing things that I've done in my life and that I am doing right now or will be doing in a few weeks.

8. Disconnect from technology more.  Especially now that I teach in a 1:1 iPad classroom, it's sort of easy to get addicted to technology.  When was the last time I read a book?  Probably August... so I plan on bringing at least one book with me to read on our getaway weekend.  Sometimes it's nice to just unplug and enjoy each other's company.

9. Find ways to share some happiness.  I know my coworkers are just as frustrated and unhappy about work this year as I am.  Our unhappiness has been contagious.  So maybe my happy will be contagious too?  I'd like to find some ways to spread a little joy to my teammates so maybe could bring a little sweet treat every now and then or even just bust out some happy music in the hallway in the morning.  The little things like that can make a big difference.

10. Stop obsessing over my braces.  I'm quickly approaching year four of braces and I've just really beaten myself up about it lately.  I'm just so tired of having them and explaining why I have them to both adults and kids.  Hopefully I'm in the last stages of them but I've been thinking that for three years.  I've just stopped asking how much longer but I am seeing progress at last, after more than two years of nothing changing.  I know in the end I'll be happy I did this, but it's just so easy to get disheartened.  I was looking back at pictures of myself before braces and I should be really happy about how much better my smile looks now than before I started this all, even if we're not done just yet.

So there you have it.  The thing is that I simply need to decide to be happy again.  I'll let you know how it goes.  Wish me luck.  :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Monday-Wednesday OOTD

Quick post today to show you some cell phone selfies of what I wore to work on this Monday-Wednesday (Wednesday that feels like Monday).  I knew it was going to be a long day so I went with dark wash jeans but paired them with a ponte blazer to at least make it look like I still cared about how I looked.  I loved this outfit!  But maybe next time I'll try the back facing camera on my cell phone, as the front one did not impress me with its photo quality.

petite mint crew neck T-shirt: Kohl's
petite ponte grey striped blazer: Bealls Outlet
petite dark wash straight leg jeans: Loft Outlet
mint flats: Vanity Fair Outlet

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Shopping My Stash

Happy Veteran's Day!  I'm so glad to have today off from work to honor our veterans.  It's been a busy couple of weeks with no sign of slowing down until the week of Thanksgiving so today is a welcome gift of relaxation and reflection.  On Monday of this week, I realized I've used the exact same makeup products like every day since August so in an attempt to make myself happier and neglect my loved items less, I decided to pull out some of my old favorites and shop my stash this week.  This is also a way for me to be able to get ready faster in the morning, without spending so much time trying to decide what products to use.  Below is what I have selected.

Eye Products:
Hard Candy Baked Eyeshadow Duo in High Maintenance
Cover Girl Eyeshadow Single in Tapestry Taupe
Essence Stay All Day Long Lasting Eyeshadow in Glammy Goes To...
NYX Slide On Eyeliner in Brown Perfection

Face Products:
Mary Kay Mineral Cheek Color in Citrus Bloom
NYC Blushable Creme Stick in Plaza Pink
Cover Girl Cheekers Blush in Pretty Peach

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

October Purchases Round Up

This round up of purchases is what made me really stop and rethink my current shopping habits.  These same bad habits are what led me to have a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear last year and while I'm doing a lot better than I was then, I don't want to have a style relapse.  Also, after I realized how much money I was spending on stuff I didn't really need, that was a wake up call too.  So I'm going to try to really be smarter about my purchases in November.

Cognac boots from Belk - This is actually one purchase I'm quite happy about.  This was my "birthday present" that I told hubby I wanted, since I wore out my favorite cognac boots and have been looking for a replacement for over a year now.  I really love these and see myself wearing them a ton.

charcoal ponte striped blazer from Bealls Outlet- The knit fabric on this blazer makes it feel like a sweatshirt but it fits really well and looks really cute on.  I see myself wearing this a lot in the future and I'd be totally happy if it wasn't weird to wear it every day.

beige scarf from Walmart - I definitely went crazy this month with scarves.  I think I have an obsession.

These infinity scarves came in a 2 pack from Walmart.  I was loving the plaid one and the black was a fun bonus.

These pink infinity scarves also came in a 2 pack from Walmart.

I've worn both of these dresses from Rue 21 several times, although they both currently need some alterations finished.  If I can get my lazy booty to get the alterations done, I definitely think I would wear these even more.

I also picked up this pair of charcoal fleece lined leggings from Rue21.  I don't know why I thought I needed both a black and a grey pair, since it hasn't been cold enough here to wear either one but I'm hoping I'll get a lot of use out of them in the colder months of winter, when my size would normally have sold out by then.  We'll see.

And finally, from Target I got a pair of fuchsia (royal berry, top) and purple (purple bergamont, bottom) tights.  I've worn the purple ones but these are a purchase I think I definitely didn't need.

So there you have it, my October regrets purchases.  Wish me better choices for November!  I'm working on it.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Bad Blogger

I've been a bad blogger this week.  It was just one of those weeks.  Last Saturday was my birthday, when I refused to do any work or anything work like.  Which meant I had to work all day Sunday to catch up because I started tutoring now on Mondays and Thursdays to earn a little extra cash for the holidays and we started this week.  Then on Tuesday I ran another professional development to train some of the other teachers at our school on how to teach in a 1:1 iPad classroom.  As I've said before, running teacher trainings is not my thing so I spent a lot of time preparing my Keynote presentation to be sure that the time I had with them that day was not a waste of time.  It turned out to be a big hit and I got a lot of thanks afterwards.  So I've again been working far too much and everything in my personal and home life has fallen behind.  My half finished dress form is still sitting on my kitchen table.  I have three half-finished alteration projects upstairs.  *Sigh*  I'm basically just going to be working my butt off from now until Thanksgiving break so who knows how much I'll be able to blog.  In the meantime, here are some pics of what I did this weekend.

1. Made a colossal mess cleaning out my closet (read: rethinking all my life choices)

2. Snuggled my much neglected kitties

3. And besides that, I spent a lot of time in my PJs on the couch, watching The Big Bang Theory on DVD while surfing Pinterest... cause sometimes that's just what a gal needs to do after a long week at work.