Thursday, March 28, 2013

hair did, nails did, erythang did

My sweet momma and I went for mani/pedis yesterday. Never mind the fact that it's still 50 degrees outside, with Easter being this weekend, it seemed like a necessity. I knew I wanted something springy, not too milky-pastel but not overly bright. More like if a jelly bean and a marshmallow had a baby. Make sense? Good. I picked..
essie "Turquoise and Caicos" for my hands
and OPI "If You Moust You Moust" on my toes.

I was so happy with my choices, but I had to laugh when I realized how perfectly these hues match the CAbi spring collection... I must have really been channeling Thin Mint and Power Pink...

What can I say? It's official, y'all. I'm a CAbi girl through and through (and wouldn't have it any other way...)

p.s. Kendi did a post on hot pink blazers! I love our design team... so on trend! Our version has pretty princess seaming and the sliiightest peplum, so it's insanely flattering and feminine. j'adore. 

p.p.s. remember my first attempt at seafoam green nails?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

my office

I've always been a firm believer in having a designated work space (as seen here.) Now, granted, my definition of "work space" is very loose, and I've found a comfy couch or crowded kitchen counter makes a perfectly acceptable "desk," but I will say having an office certainly has its perks. Personal and professional touches that speak directly to what you do are key to making your work area your own. 
1. I'm not working for the social media company anymore, but I've taken on a new role at the restaurant that requires me to spend a lot of time focusing on these things, so the @ figure and the "Tweets and Status Updates" book (hilar, btw) are a nod to that. 

2. Fashion. The CAbi Spring 13 collection was inspired my Paris, so little French things here and there keep me feeling inspired and creative. 

3. Africa. Part of my heart will always be in Tanzania. Photos and other reminders of Africa keep me feeling motivated, blessed, and thankful. 

4. So how do you reconcile Paris and Tanzania? Keep a similar color palette. I stuck with black and white pictures on my pale pink walls. It balances out the girly hue and keeps the room feeling grounded.  
5. Light. I love natural light, and the big window over my desk was one of the things that attracted me to the townhouse in the first place. I also use lamps and candles (rather than overhead lighting) to keep the space warm and inviting. 
6. Books. 
-To honor and remember my educational background, I have my Communication Theory textbook sitting on my desk. It was my absolute favorite class with my absolute favorite professor and I couldn't bring myself to sell it when the semester ended (and I'm so happy I didn't.)
-Planner. Obvs. 
-I have a copy of the childrens book my grandmother wrote, because it reminds me to follow my heart and chase my dreams. 
-My sister made an "inspiration book" for me, full of quotes and notes of encouragement. I find myself turning to it when I'm feeling overwhelmed or bluesy. 
-Blank notebook(s) for brilliant ideas. And doodling during boring phone calls.
7. Personal touches. Two giant trifle dishes of nail polish because a. it's pretty b. I like nail polish. When I look at it I just feel happy. Family photos and sweet cards and notes serve this same purpose. 

Where do you work? How do you make your space your own?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Guilt-free Friday

[pretty aunt dancing to "The Girl from Ipanema" after a delicious dinner at Peak City Grill]

... on a Monday. Because last week was crazy and this week will be even crazier, to be sure. But first, how was your weekend? I spent mine in Raleigh with my sweet "second family." It wasn't all play, I actually had 2 CAbi shows (eek!) and did a private showing too! I'm love, love, loving what I'm doing and I feel so blessed. Getting back today feeling both tired & energized... now how does that work? Anyways, here's to a great week. xoxo

Hey! It's ok... be adamant about your artificial sweetener preferences. Iced tea? Sweet-n-Low, please. Coffee? I'm gonna need some Truvia...

...if you're still burning your Christmas candles (and not pressing skip when "Winter Wonderland" comes into play as your iPod shuffles.) not trust women who say they "can't cook" and to judge people with any form of "lil" or "baby" in their Twitter handle...

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

i can teach you, but i have to charge

Ok, imma leave the milkshakes to Kelis. Today I'm talking protein shakes. 

I've never been much of a shake girl, in any sense of the word, but after amping up my workouts still not quite seeing the results I want to see (muscles where are youuu?) I'm calling for reinforcements. After my trainer's harsh scolding for not eating enough after working out, I'm trying my hand at recovery beverages. The one I made today truly, honestly rivals the best frap Starbucks can serve up, and it's chocked full of protein. Here's my recipe, and of course I have no exact measurements. 
I start with whey protein. I like it better than soy and there are mixed reviews on how soy can affect women, so whey's the way to go.

Add the typical stuff, ice, skim milk, water... whatever it takes to get it to the consistency you like. Shake it, blend, it's whatever...

Aaaand secret ingredient...
**imagine this in my best Iron Chef Chairman voice**
Chobani Bites coffee with dark chocolate chips. A little extra protein, great flavor, and perfect consistency.

and a shot of espresso. Caffeine is good for muscle recovery and it gives me an energy boost. And let's be real, I'm addicted. I couldn't live without my Nespresso Pixie.

How do you recharge after a workout? 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

her feet killin her, i call it shoe-icide

While on my self-inflicted shopping diet/spending freeze/clothes-hoarding hiatus, I quickly found an alternative to my apparent apparel addiction... shoes. Lots and lots of fabulous shoes. Here's the rationale (from someone who clearly doesn't think rationally...) It's my job to wear (and sell) gorgeous clothes. And great shoes only serve to complete the package. If you were displaying an exquisite painting, you wouldn't put it in a cheap frame. So, the shoes are the frame.

So, call me crazy, but I absolutely adore my Fergie "Indie"espadrilles, (yeah, Stacy Ann Ferguson, peed in her pants on stage, spells tasty with an e, Fergie.) I can tromp around in the 5 inch heel for hours, they're stupid comfortable. I have them in black, but I would give my firstborn to get my hands on this nude pair in a 6.5. The rope sole is so on trend for spring, and wedges will always be my first love. 
When wearing heels isn't an option, I'm liking a bold, patterned flat, like these babies from J. Crew...

Aaaand if we want to get really comfortable with it, Bensimon sneakers à la French girls (or a cheap alternative, as first mentioned here)
What shoes are you rocking this spring? 

And, as a courtesy, the song inspiration for the post title...
and just in case I got "Fergalicious" Stuck in your head...
you know you love me.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

just throw it in the bag...

Ok, so I told you I'm a hot shot fashion consultant now, right? Well, while I was in San Diego for training, I asked some of the veterans for their advice. One resounding theme: don't over do it on the clothes. A common "rookie mistake" is to fall in l-o-v-e with the collection (which I did) and overspend on personal purchases, rationalizing that it's a "business investment." So, I made a rule for myself: No personal purchases until after I had completed my first month. And dang if it wasn't tough! It challenged me to wear my samples in creative ways (I don't get to pick my sample sizes!) and it gave me time to figure out my absolute favorite pieces. Here's what I'm loving from CAbi... (and promptly purchasing this afternoon...)
Texture Camisole and Texture Slouch Pant with Chic Jacket
This was my abs fave look as soon as it came out on the runway. And now, a month later, I'm still nuts over it. I love the idea of wearing the two pieces together like a jumpsuit. It's got that "model off duty" vibe, especially when paired with pretty espadrilles (more on that later) and loads of gold jewelry. This drapey, lightweight material will be perfect for when things get steamy this summer (gotta love that southern humidity.) It's a great alternative to the overdone sundress. Way edgier & totally sophisticated. The Chic Jacket is perfection because it has the polished look & the masculine cut of a traditional blazer, but the sheer sleeves add a subtle, sexy appeal. 
Feather Tunic 
This piece didn't really stand out to me in the beginning, but as the season has progressed I'm really digging it. It's 100% silk (so dreamy) and the gold buttons are bonkers. Love it paired with these...
Thin Mint Jegging
I kind of cheated here... I convinced my mom to buy them and I've been wearing them. I just couldn't wait a whole month! Love the color (mint is so hot for spring) and the fit makes your legs look miles long. 
Scarf Top (image above)
And one sample that I have been wearing the heck out of... The adorable scarf top. Love that it has 3 different patterns. And it seriously works for all ages & body types. Proof: my sweet grandmother ordered this top. Love the thought that she & I miiight show up wearing the same shirt and both look fabulous. 

Have you checked out the CAbi Spring 2013 collection? I'd love to know what you think! xo

Sunday, March 10, 2013

on my mind...


Monday night I staggered into work anxious and emotional. I was feeling overwhelmed and I needed to escape. I'm not going to say that running away is always the best option, but for me, in this case, it was. I needed to get out of town and Wintergreen, VA was expecting snow. My sweet brother was up there for spring break, and I successfully convinced him to stay a couple extra days.

I got my shifts covered, loaded up my car, and set off Tuesday afternoon. As I pulled into the resort the first of the flurries began to fall. We thought we might get 8-10 inches. We ended up with 24-30. The power went out for a few hours Wednesday afternoon, and as I lie sprawled out by the fire listening to the wind howl and my brother snoozing quietly on the couch, I penned this...

fire crackling, snow falling
wind howls, raging on.
bursts and gusts much stronger than
I came to escape it all.
The fears and insecurities,
the lingering questions and doubts.
I thought if I found myself
on the side of the biggest mountain
my fears would get small
the worry would melt away like icicles
and I would [find peace]
I underestimated her fury though
& now she's forcing me to face my own
No power, no phone, no television chatter
to drown out the sound of the
dumb devils and demons of doubt
or to distract me from myself.
I'm stuck inside with nothing to do but face them &
[make peace]
outside the storm rages on
a nor'easter, they say
but making peace is much greater than finding it.


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