Get Your Veggie On

Healthy McHealthersons are always telling you to “listen to your body”, it will tell you what it needs. Good advice! But what about those days (weeks?) when your body is like “no! Listen to me! A bag of Milanos and a whole pizza is a perfectly reasonable dinner! And then feel free to mindlessly chow a whole bag of Sriracha flavored potato chips, and then you should probably eat an ice cream sandwich just to balance that out. I am YOUR BODY! You will listen to me!!”

This happens to me easily once a month. And also all winter.

Sometimes, though, something wonderful happens- I get sick of feeling salty and sticky, and a broken, weak little voice inside whispers, feebily, “…..vegetables!!! eat a vegetable!!!” and slowly, if I listen closely, it gets louder and soon I am totally on team veggie. I have a few go-to recipes* for when I need a serious veggie intervention. An interveggton, if you will. Continue reading

Godzilla!! As Told By Monsters

(Spoilers ahead! Spoilers also if you live on planet Earth and have ever seen a Godzilla movie/army movie/summer blockbuster basically)

15 YEARS AGO

MUTO: What the…?! A whole bunch of miners just fell into my relatively shallow subterranean chamber of dormancy! Lady!! LADY!!! LAAAADDDYYYYYY WAKE UP!! Do you wanna kick it with me to Tokyo?

LADY MUTO: Uuuuuuuugh……….. I’m…. uummm… I need to wash my hair. I’ll meet you when we’re less, you know, pupal?

MUTO: Wurd. Imma go eat some radiation- laters!! *pchew!*

GODZILLA: (awakened, grumpy) YOU GUYS!! SHUT UP!!! SLEEPING ON THE BOTTOM OF THE OCEAN HERE!! (muttering to self) I’m not really clear on why I hate those guys so much but I really hate those guys!!!

PRESENT DAY

MUTO: *yaaawwwwwwn* OMG I can’t believe I slept for 15 years and meanwhile ate this whole nuclear power plant!! I better motor to find my lady.

Tries to leave, is trapped by steel cables

MUTO: What in the what is… aaahh!! Rude!!

Emits EMP blast, rendering humans useless

MUTO: LOL! Flies away

HUMANS: WTF WINGS?!!?!

HAWAII

MUTO: LADY!!! Laaaaaadddddyyyyyyy!!! Where you at? I totes stole a nuclear submarine!! Want half?

LADY MUTO: I’m in Nevada! OMG I ate a whole mountain of nuclear waste!!! Like literally. A MOUNTAIN.

MUTO: Well I was going to fly over to you but clearly you need to walk that shit off. Meet up in San Fran?

LADY MUTO: Sounds good!! I just have a few Cirque du Soleil shows to step on on my way!

GODZILLA: Shut up. Shut up shut up shut up!!! SERIOUSLY YOU GUYS. ARE. SO. ANNOYING!!! DON’T MAKE ME COME OVER THERE OR I WILL TOTALLY ATOMIC BREATHE ON YOU BECAUSE I HATE YOU FOR…. REASONS!!

Starts swimming to Hawaii…. derp derp derp….

MUTO: Loo loo loo I’ll just put my submarine down in this jungle… hey! Jerk!! Stop shooting at me! That stings!

Emits EMP blast, planes fall from sky

MUTO: Can I even eat a plane? I don’t know how I’d digest it since I only eat radiation but ok *chomp chomp* LOL.

GODZILLA: *swims*

MUTO: Hey what’s going on at this luao? Can I hula with you?? Are you all having a nice vacation??

GODZILLA: *emerges from ocean* What did I say? WHAT. DID. I. SAY??

MUTO: Whatever atom-breath!! More like OUT OF BREATH, amirite?? Let’s brawl!!

GODZILLA: What?? No!! I just swam halfway across the damn Pacific ocean!! *PUNCH!*

MUTO: Ahhh! *WHACK!*

Fight ensues, humans are not pleased

MUTO: Hahahahaha you are too old and fat and I have wings. Laters!! *zing!*

GODZILLA: Balls!

Begrudgingly gets back in ocean
SAN FRANCISCO
HUMANS: Ok so all of these beasties eat radiation, right? So let’s lure them out into the ocean with this tasty super missile and then totally blow them up! Since they keep knocking out our power let’s just put this missile that will lure them once it’s in the ocean and obviously not before it gets to the ocean on this old timey steam train and wait patiently for it to arrive at the ocean.
LADY MUTO: Hey a delicious missile! *yoink!*
HUMANS: …….oh.
LADY MUTO: Oh snap! My belly is aglow with adorable tiny MUTO eggs! Do you want this missile, babies?? This yummy yummy missile?? Let’s build a nest in Chinatown and then I will buy you a mogwai.
MUTO: Lady!!! I am here in San Fransisco!
GODZILLA: Holy hell, that was a long swim. Lemme just grab on to this nice red bridge to help me get out of the water…
MUTO: Hey Oldzilla!! Need to take a nap?
GODZILLA: You are such a dick!
brawl ensues
LADY MUTO: Hey MUTO! I built a nest and need you to… OH HELL NO THIS GUY?!?
punch! smash! throw! punch!
LADY MUTO: (noticing tiny humans have blown up her nest) NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
GODZILLA: Hey MUTO! *tail-slams MUTO dead into a skyscraper*
GODZILLA: That’s RIGHT. *chest thrust*
LADY MUTO: *blink blink!*
GODZILLA: I’m still unclear on my hate reasons so ATOMIC BREATH MURDER AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!
LADY MUTO turns to stone and dies
GODZILLA: I need a nap now LIKE WHOA. *collapses in the middle of the city*
THE NEXT DAY
HUMANS: So…. is he a good monster…….? Also is he dead? How… do…. we… uuummm… that’s a big corpse….
GODZILLA: (wakes up, flips off humans) WHO’S FAT NOW, BITCHES!! *moonwalks into ocean, does dougie, swims away*

Quick Change: From Work to Glam in 20 Minutes

How often does this happen to you: you’re scheduled to work in a booth at an expo across town all day, and then you have to immediately go to a wedding 4 blocks away? All the time, right?! Ok, maybe not, but this time of year, maybe you have to get to a holiday party right after work or something. Right? That’s a thing that happens? Magazines are always running “day to night!” fashion spreads, and I never thought it would apply to me… but it DID.

Have you ever been to a Women’s Expo? When I was in high school, I thought it was so cool that my mom wanted to excuse me from classes for the day so we could have a girl power bonding day in downtown Milwaukee. The expectation: an empowering day full of awesome women doing awesome things!! The reality: “are you an autumn, or a spring? Let’s do your colors!” *sad trombone* We were so disappointed that we ditched the expo and spent the rest of the day people watching at the mall, snarking over an appetizer sampler platter…. actually that was a pretty great afternoon. BUT! My point is, Women’s Expos are THE WORST. Luckily this time around, I had an amazing crew to keep me entertained and sane (and run for vodka samples) throughout the day.

On the Saturday of the expo, I needed to tap into my rarely seen ability to plan ahead (I’m much more of a last minute scrambler, which often leads to lunches that consist of a banana and a bag of nuts, or getting to hot yoga without anything dry to change into after, so you’d think I would learn, but no). MB and I were invited to a super fun wedding that was happening within a mile of the convention center, and cocktail hour started right as I would be finishing up. Obviously, it wouldn’t make sense for me to haul all the way back home to change, plus then we’d be very late. So MB agreed to take a cab to the ceremony and wait for me there. The night before, I prepped my outfit:

wardrobeSource: jess
The theme here was “easy”. The dress (super cute (and cheap!!) from H&M) was not very wrinkle-able, so it was easy to roll up and stuff inside one of my boots.  Black tights and black boots, again, easy for a fall wedding (it was like 5 degrees that day). I also packed some accessories to add a little sparkle.

The morning of the expo, I made sure to start preparing. I “set” my damp hair with some styling creme in a low side braid, hoping for some bold waves by 5:00. I also got my face ready. That sounds weird, right? Anyway, BB cream, concealer, and a light dusting of foundation powder, then I did a simple eye with a trick: I planned to do a heavy winged liner at night, so by day, I took a forgiving casual brown liner and prepped a winged template for later. Brilliant! But thanks to a hot pink uniform shirt, super dry expo air, and lovely fluorescent lighting, I looked pretty dead during the day:

beforeSource: jess
In the morning, I packed a bag of essentials:

makeup kitSource: jess
With 20 minutes on the clock once we shut down our booth for the day, I made a mad dash for the expo hall bathroom: a sad, grey, poorly lit, no counter space-having den of despair. Apologizing in my head to anyone truly needing it, I commandeered the handicapped stall to change my clothes (sorry!!). After my quick-change, I dried out a sink and dumped my supplies in it. I shook out my hair and tousled it into a jaunty side pony. I touched up my face with a quick sweep of Kat von D’s foundation powder (I’m obsessed with everything in her line, btw) and added some color to my cheeks to un-dead-ify my face. My eyes got a quick sweep of gold shadow (half baked) from the Naked palette, and my brows were filled in with…. naked? buck? I can’t remember. Every 4 minutes, a girl from the flavored vodka booth was dumping out samples in the sink next to me, leaving me in a cloud of boozy raspberries. I took a deep breath anyway, and focused on the hardest part of my quick change: the liquid liner. Even though I still had my template from earlier, liquid liner always goes like this: the first eye turns out perfect!! The second eye turns out like it’s derpy sister. I couldn’t afford to screw it up (read: I didn’t bring any q-tips), so I hunkered down and went for it. Then probably went back and forth a few times creating thicker lines than I intended, but it’s ok! Glamour! (KvD wins again- her liner is THE BEST.)

Once that ordeal was… good enough, I went back over my lids with gold glitter. Why not? It’s fun and how often do you get to be a disco ball? Lashes were re-curled and re-mascaraed, then my whole face was locked down for the night with a spritz of all-nighter. Finally: the lips. This evening called for nothing other than a perfect red, supplied by Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick (in Icon). This lip color is the PERFECT product. It’s the perfect blue-red, it dries to a gorgeous matte, doesn’t transfer, doesn’t dry out your lips. It just sits there, knowing it’s better than everything else in your arsenal, but doesn’t make a big deal about it. Also they have a mini version in the impulse bins at Sephora right now for only 10 bucks. GET IT!!

ta da!Source: jess

ta da!

Ok! Ready to hit the dance floor!! My husband went above and beyond by a) having on an amazing outfit and b) handing me 3 Advil and a glass of wine as soon as I walked into the reception hall.

you can't take us anywhere.Source: jess

you can’t take us anywhere.

Do you have any events coming up for the holidays that will require you to switch up your look right quick? What’s your go-to strategy??

Fashion Kills… Or At Least Tries To, Very Slowly…

A couple of weeks ago, I found myself walking through Dick’s Sporting Goods. See, I was popping into the mall quick to get a very cute dress from H&M for an upcoming wedding, and Dick’s is in the same wing, and always has easy parking. Usually I just keep my head down and plow through, since Dick’s is terrible. But on this occasion, a pair of fancy new winter running tights on a mannequin caught my eye. I had, in fact, just signed up for a New Year’s Day 5 miler, and had therefore resigned myself to awful, awful, cold-weather running. Obviously, a new pair of winter tights was exactly what I needed! Then I started poking around the Nike section looking for… ??? (Nike owns my soul- I never meant for it to happen, but it did)

I happened upon a rack of sloppily hung, reduced priced, black Nike cardigans. Nike cardigans!! But there was something off about them- a band of fabric that wasn’t quite a hood and wasn’t quite a cape-holder… ah ha! It was meant to be looped around your neck, creating a closure and kind of acting as a scarf. I felt smug in the fact that I had figured out this fashion conundrum, and then felt sorry for the rack of misunderstood sweaters. I tried it on, and it was… ok. I didn’t love it. I sent a picture to Pamela, and she couldn’t tell either if it was cute or not. I was on a bit of a time crunch, so I decided to leave it behind.

Two weeks later, I had a long work day, and for some reason caught myself dreaming of this piece. It had thumb holes! It was like a hoodie that I could get away with wearing to work! It would keep me warm AND cool (it’s made of space-age dri-fit material). It would be so chic with some cute tights- just look at it on the Nike model!

photoSource: http://store.nike.com/us/en_us/pd/twist-styled-wrap-training-top/pid-723728/pgid-1316482

So, after I wrapped up my last client, I dashed back over to Dick’s to find that they still had an entire rack of these babies. I didn’t even try it on again- I had my mind made up that this would make me SO HAPPY. I got home and threw it on over a t-shirt and jeans which received a solid “….huh.” from my husband. This should have been my first clue.

The next morning, I got ready for my longest day of the week- I see 5 clients Monday morning, then dash over to school to teach class for 5 hours with about an hour in between. I need to be versatile, functional, and obvs, cute. I twisted my wrap on over a tank top and some thick leggings, and sleepily bolted for the door. Right before putting my coat on, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, and had a tinge of doubt. In a move completely out of character for me, I decided to dig the tags out of the garbage and put them in my purse, but otherwise convinced myself that I was totally cute and this was going to be a great addition to my winter wardrobe.

Within 45 minutes of work, I wanted to burn this wrap. I wanted to throw it on the ground, punch it in the face, loan it to Bruce Banner right before he Hulked out, GET IT OFF OF ME.

See, when you first put it on, it’s cute, right? Open on the left, twisted on the right:

photo 1Source: jess

And then you move around for 10 minutes and it all falls apart. Stupid on the left, slowly strangling me to death on the right:

 

photo 2Source: jess

I even tried wearing it like this very misinformed Russian model:

photoSource: jess
photo 3Source: www.wildberries.ru
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT IS THIS?!?!?! How did this possibly pass Nike’s testing??? No wonder it was discounted and alone!! I went back and forth all day- could I make it work? I’d catch myself in the mirror and think “just try harder. Ok, yeah, this works”, and then 2 seconds later I would be pulling it down from my throat. I would think “ok, I’ve been working in this for several hours. I should probably keep it. I could wear it to yoga? Would I wear it to yoga?? NO YOU WILL NOT YOU KNOW YOURSELF TOO WELL”. Also, NO ONE complimented me on it.

The minute I was done with work, I tore it off, stuffed it into my purse, and high-tailed it across town to the mall. I imagined all kinds of fights the customer service rep would give me: the tags are off. It’s obviously been worn. Is this cat hair? But Pamela convinced me to at least try, so I got really really brave and…. they took it back, no questions asked, and barely looked at me.

And then I exchanged it for a very open-necked sweater.

What fashion mis-steps have you taken recently? What risks am I missing out on? Let me know in the comments!

Let’s Get Ready to RUMble!!!

kraken vs captainSource: jess

Some things are hard for me to resist: namely, B-movies about sea monsters, and theme parties to celebrate B-movies about sea monsters. A few years back, riding on the success of Megashark vs. Giant Octopus, the SyFy channel and the Asylum put out what they hoped to be the next big B-blockbuster: Sharktopus. Obviously, I was giddy with delight, and promptly planned a viewing party. I mean, this movie had an amazing theme song, so clearly it was going to be epic, right? It was actually so bad that I fell asleep, BUT! That didn’t stop us from throwing a mean party, complete with sharkomelon:

62361_476930516349_4411032_n

What kind of cocktail goes with sharktopuseseses? Rum cocktails, of course! The first choice in beverage for the finest of pirates and swashbucklers, but not just any rum would do. I picked one out based purely on it’s label, just like I pick out my wine. Enchanting us even further with it’s quirky marketing, the Kraken found it’s way into our home, and soon, into our livers hearts.

Years later, we still keep Kraken on hand, but wait! Seems there is a competitor afoot:

2012-12-07 18.53.52Source: jess
I see you, sneaky captain, with your similar lithograph label. The Captain has challenged us to a duel, and we couldn’t leave well enough alone, so we invited the sea creeper into our home for a comparison.

How Do They Compare?

Obviously, both are black spiced rum. The Captain claims to be “double charred”, which came through as a “tastes like burning decorative wood chips” flavor. Both are in the same price point- often only within about 50 cents of each other (750ml for both is usually around $20). The Captain edges out the Kraken in alcohol content at 47.3%. The Kraken is 47%, so this just makes us feel like the Captain is one-upping. So really, the choice comes down to taste. Here is what we thought:

So there you have it- the winner, hands down, is the Kraken. If you find yourself with a bottle of the Captain instead, don’t feel bad- it’s perfectly serviceable in a rum and coke. For a great Kraken cocktail, I recommend a classic “dark and stormy” application, mixed with a really spicy ginger beer, fresh lime, and if you’re really feeling fancy, a dash of bitters. Cheers!

ps- the Captain also has a secret:

IMG_3632Source: jess

What are you drinking? Did you love Sharknado? Tell us in the comments below!

Finally!! I Tried SUP Yoga.

image

so pretty, you would never guess my internal voice was yelling every profanity imaginable

Growing up in the Midwest, I can’t explain why I’ve always been fascinated with surfing. I’ve never been good at skateboarding, I’m too afraid of smashing my body apart snowboarding, and usually when I’m near an ocean, it’s on the sandy, rum-soaked shores of the calm blue Caribbean Sea. But something about slicing through salty sea spray, gliding across a glassy wave, paddling out into the surf, being allowed required to wear Vans every day… seems like a pretty great time to me. I’ve only been able to actually try it once, and it was INCREDIBLE!! But I was out of shape, had a broken foot, and holy crap, the ocean totally kicked. my. ass.

Closer to home, we have a reasonable surf-alternative in stand-up paddle boarding (SUP). Why do we need to stand on water? I don’t know, but it’s awesome. A few years ago, a local yoga instructor decided the ground was just too, I don’t know, GROUNDED, so she took her yoga practice to the water, and SUP yoga was born!

I fall over regularly in normal yoga, but I just couldn’t shake the need to try this- it was just crazy enough to work.

SUP isn’t terribly difficult on it’s own- the boards are long and fairly wide, so they’re pretty stable when you’re kneeling, standing, and basically tooling around. But yoga, you know, is all up and down and twisty and balance-y. So doing it on a floating wobble-board makes total sense. ??? When a friend I hadn’t seen in a while emailed me, asking if I’d be interested in checking it out, I immediately signed up.

I fully expected to be the spaz of the group. I was really worried I would either a) drift away from the group, b) fall into the lake, or c) drift into someone else causing them to fall into the lake. Thankfully, we had anchors (ok, it was a hand weight on a string) clipped on to the backs of our boards, so my drifting fears were calmed. But! While we were gathering into our class-pod, I was the victim of a float-by-crashing! Neither of us fell in, but my anchor did, so I kind of just stayed there.

We started off with some basic seated stretching- totally doable. Then we started going through a flow. This is where I was hella thankful that I’ve been working on strength all summer. Every single muscle was engaged, pushing into the board, hanging on for dear life as I moved from standing to plank (eep!), through chaturanga and up-dog, finally into the worst version of downward dog I have ever done. The instructor suggested moving into 3-legged dog, then letting our hip open. HA! Funny one- I will stay here reluctantly raising one leg off the board, thank you. We went through a few more terrifying flows, then stood to practice tree.

Now, I’m totally a rock star at tree. I can tree all day. Once during tree, there was a squirrel in a tree outside staring right at me, and I out-stared that squirrel in tree. On a board, it’s a different story. Maybe if I went more often, I would feel more brave, but having only one leg on the ground was totally not happening. I know the intention of tree, though, so I wriggled my foot into a kickstand, drew my knee back, and rocked that tree. It was amazing. I owned this moment.

UNTIL A GIANT FISH JUMPED RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY BOARD.

I was in no way prepared for this!! My tree fell, I almost fell, and I was so startled I could only giggle and crouch down on my board, trying to recover. Jerk move, fish.

Something I haven’t mentioned yet is, this whole time, I was completely distracted with keeping my paddle on the board. Somehow, everyone else had no problems, but mine kept sliding around. An SUP paddle clip needs to be invented if this yoga on the water is going to become a thing. Go invent it and make millions. You’re welcome.

image We moved into a prone back-bending series. This was lovely- close to the ground, full contact with the board, and my face fit perfectly in the spoon of my paddle. During the second phase, my paddle shifted up away from my face, but it was ok- being eye level with the water was incredible. At this point, all the internal swearing stopped, and I was totally in the moment. The water gently flowing past my face, the sounds of the evening creeping in, the moon rising… absolutely breathtaking.

And that’s when I realized my paddle had floated away.

As we worked through a warrior series, a precarious triangle series, and some bridges, I watched my paddle drifting slowly further away from the group. A canoe went by my paddle. I sent them a psychic message: grab it!! Bring it to me! You’re hair looks really pretty today! But to no avail. A father and daughter paddled by in a giant swan, also oblivious to my paddle abandonment. As we relaxed into Savasana, I resigned myself to a life on the lake, living on this board, becoming reluctant neighbor-friends with that jerk fish….

Obviously, my friend totally saved me after we were done with class- she was happy to actually paddle on the board, and retrieved it like some kind of magical surfing rocket. After an hour of mental-swearing my way through an otherwise standard set of poses, paddling back into shore was a piece of cake. Or apple cobbler. Which is totally what I ate when we got back to shore.

Oh! One girl did fall in, but she got back up, and rocked that shit.

image

Totally nailed this water-warrior. Ok, 2 seconds later I almost bit it.

Would I do it again? Maybe. At $25, it was a little steep for a regular workout, but it did really make me remember all the little tweaks that we learn on the ground to make your poses more stable. I think I’m more likely to just go regular SUP-ing (?), and maybe it’s time I finally head to the Malibu of the Midwest to ride some actual waves, Blue Crush-style.

What’s the craziest workout you’ve tried lately? What should I try next? Let me know in the comments!

photos by Maureen Hebl, SUP yoga instructor, who is part water spider maybe? She was yoga-ing on her board like nbd. AMAZING.

FOUND: the Secret-Yoga Career Pant

YOU GUYS. I have long held a dislike for career-wear. I like how I look in it, sure, but it makes me feel so very sad. I can’t move how I want to, I’m thinking too hard about my clothes, they have to be, you know, IRONED. Uuugh! I hate it. I really just want to wear yoga pants all the time, and sometimes I sneak them into the office, but I know I’m not fooling anyone.

The other day I fell into Old Navy out of boredom- I had no real shopping goals but I do like their V-necks. And then, because an evil genius marketing person put them in the exact right spot, I saw these:

rockstar demi

The Old Navy Rockstar Demi-Boot Jeans (in Black)

I’ve owned Rockstar jeans in the past, with mixed feelings- all the way from “Yay!” to “these are 4 sizes up from what I should be wearing and they still don’t fit!”. I own two pair of the Rockstar regular flare jeans- the “regular” length is fine with Vans but too short to wear with my Danskos; I found a pair of talls on clearance once, and they are ridiculously long and flared and make me look like a weird hippie. Good enough for “jeans days” at the office, but I’m definitely not winning any fashion prizes. For the new Demi-boot, Old Navy’s description reads “Half boot, half skinny, all cute. With added length to wear with heels.”

!!!!!! Ok, first off, they are in no way jeans. They have a few jean-esque details like rivets (black) and pockets, but that’s it. The fabric is absolutely not denim- more of a cotton twill? And it’s SUPER MEGA STRETCHY. Seriously, I was just lunging around in them and they just go with the flow. They are, indeed, long enough to make me look like a normal person in my Danskos, with just enough flare to say “why yes, these are smart pants, for smart ladies”. Also, the rise is not too tall but also not too short- I am totally sitting down and didn’t have to make any preparatory adjustments. BOOM.

The online reviews say they fade like a mothertrucker when you wash them, but maybe they’re just bad at laundry…? If they don’t fade too much I might have to stock up. Old Navy, please also release these in a normal, classic, slightly faded denim wash. DO IT.

These are totally career pants with all of the comfort of yoga pants. They look good and do not make me feel sad. I may or may not have worn them every day this week.

xo,

jess.

ps- this is not a sponsored post, but if Old Navy wants to send me a few pairs, that’d be a’ight.

ok, FINE. I kind of love “The Carrie Diaries”.

I know. I KNOW. Uuuugh!!

I set up the season pass on a lark. I loved Sex and the City in the late 90’s, and then I moved and didn’t have cable so I didn’t really stick with it, but now I will fall into the occasional Lifetime marathon and, you know, hang out with the girls. I never saw the movies though, so I’m totally not an expert.

When I first heard of The Carrie Diaries (a prequel, of sorts, also based on a book series by Candace Bushnell) I rolled my eyes SO HARD, but then, one night, half asleep in bed, I saw a commercial… and set up my TiVo. I completely forgot all about it until Pamela sent me a text last week saying she was drinking wine and watching it. So, I was super bored last Friday night, and realized I had three episodes piled up….

On the first episode, I was totally annoyed by the styling. I lived in the 80’s. Remember when we re-lived our 90’s? 80’s nostalgia is great. I will fully admit that I love that I can walk into Forever 21 and buy t-shirts with tigers and neon accessories, and believe me, I DO. But let’s look at how The Carrie Diaries depicts 80’s fashion:

carrie1Source: http://www.celebritystyleguide.com/i-1-1-13325/tv-shows/the-carrie-diaries/urban-outfitters-cooperative-conversational-pullover
Source: http://www.fashionbysai.com/2013/01/the-carrie-diaries-airs-tonight-on-etc.html
carrie 3Source: http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/2013/02/annasophia-robb-in-nyc-shooting-the-carrie-diaries.html

 

 

 

 

 

OMG adorbs!! I will buy one of each. And look!! You can actually go through all of the outfits of each episode and buy these items from Forever 21, Urban Outfitters, TopShop, H&M… (I really really need this unicorn sweater. NEEEEEEED.)

Ok, so yay! We love the 80’s!! But hold up: here’s how it actually looked:

16candlesSource: http://de.paperblog.com/the-look-of-sixteen-candles-1984-90459/
16candles2Source: http://images.fanpop.com/images/image_uploads/Sixteen-Candles-sixteen-candles-55739_445_304.jpg

 

 

 

 

Eeeeeeeee. Molly, I agree with your sentiment. Wait! Here’s an adorable matching side-by-side of current “80’s” Carrie Bradshaw and actual 1980’s SJP:

RobbSource: http://www.teenvogue.com/entertainment/tv/2013-01/carrie-diaries-style-eric-daman/?intro
SJP80Source: http://images2.fanpop.com/images/photos/8000000/Girls-Just-Want-to-Have-Fun-the-80s-8003422-385-420.jpg

 

 

 

 

See? We had no concept of appropriate amounts of makeup, hairbrushes, or styling product technology.

Ok but let’s get beyond that. The show totally sucked me in because MARTHA JONES. And then because it’s actually cute? It follows the same format-ish of SATC, where Carrie is writing (literally, with a pen) in her diary and asks a question that supplies the theme of the show, which she then narrates. The supporting cast is also totally cute, and it’s sweet without being totally sugary. Ok, in true SATC style it is actually a little dirty, but in a real teen coming-of-age way, not in a gross, incestual Gossip Girl way.

I’ve seen some interweb rumbling about how the show doesn’t follow canon, but I’m not really bothered by that. If this was a Buffy prequel, I’d be all up in it’s accuracy, but I don’t really mind that I’ve never heard of Carrie’s sister before or that on SATC she was poor as a teen and would go without eating in order to buy a copy of Vogue instead of being the daughter of a lawyer in the suburbs.

(While writing this post, I totally fell down a 321-Contact SJP rabbit hole. You’ve been warned!!)

I think I realized what’s really sucking me in to this show, aside from Martha Jones: THE MUSIC. I know I’ll sound totally old by saying this but the 80’s were a time of musical perfection. Head Over Heels. Drive. Obligatory but perfect Blue Monday. White Horse. Why does “Overkill” make me stop everything I’m doing?? None of these songs make any sense together, and yet, they do.

Also I kind of loved this cover of Rockwell’s “Somebody’s Watching Me” that was in the Halloween episode. Sorry, ghost of MJ.

So tell me: what are you watching? With or without wine? What kind of wine? Can we share your wine?

xo,

jess.

images:

http://www.celebritystyleguide.com/i-1-1-13325/tv-shows/the-carrie-diaries/urban-outfitters-cooperative-conversational-pullover

http://www.fashionbysai.com/2013/01/the-carrie-diaries-airs-tonight-on-etc.html

http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/2013/02/annasophia-robb-in-nyc-shooting-the-carrie-diaries.html

http://de.paperblog.com/the-look-of-sixteen-candles-1984-90459/

http://images.fanpop.com/images/image_uploads/Sixteen-Candles-sixteen-candles-55739_445_304.jpg

http://www.teenvogue.com/entertainment/tv/2013-01/carrie-diaries-style-eric-daman/?intro

http://images2.fanpop.com/images/photos/8000000/Girls-Just-Want-to-Have-Fun-the-80s-8003422-385-420.jpg

Hotels Pamela and I Have Stayed In, From Weirdest to Awesomest.

Pamela is one of my oldest friends. I mean, she’s not, like, my old lady friend- just, we’ve been friends for a really long time. Anyway, way back in the day, we agreed that we should totally travel together. But at this point in history, travel wasn’t really that easy; the internet was still new and sites like Orbitz and Travelocity seemed scary, and even scarier was the idea of walking into a travel agency. I mean, that was for fancy people! So years went by and we never traveled, because also we were poor 20 somethings.

Fast-forward to 2009: I was squirming at my desk (this was the year I was awkwardly employed, trying to find another teaching gig while keeping my business afloat), and sent an email to Pamela that went something like “OMG I NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE LET’S GO TO NEW ORLEANS”. She agreed, and I think by later that week (day?) we were booked for a June adventure to the Crescent City. Do you know what’s oddly relaxing? Having a trip on the calendar to look forward to.

Pamela and I are good travel partners because we tend to agree that we don’t need a fancy hotel so long as it is reasonably priced, in a good location, is reasonably not sketchy, and has a bed and a shower. I mean really- don’t you always feel like it’s a waste when your hotel room is sooo nice and then you just leave it all day to go on adventures in your destination city?? No? That’s just me? Well whatever. Here are all the places we have stayed, in order from super weird to super awesome:

The Garfield Suites, Downtown Cincinnati, Ohio

In 2010, Shepard Fairey opened a limited run exhibit at the CAC in Cincinnati. Obviously, we HAD to go, so Pamela and I (and our men) hopped in the PT Cruiser and fled south. The show was worth it, but Cincinnati is not somewhere we’d choose to go again, I don’t think? Anyway, this was our room:

Source: jess

Jess: This place was straight up weird. But awesome! It was totally an apartment? Remember how it had 1980’s pots and pans in the kitchen? We should have cooked something.
Pamela: Totally weird. Also it might have been a parking garage turned into apartments, turned hotel. That’s the only way to explain the giant cement pillars at random spots through the, um, room?  Apartment?  I think we left leftover food in the full size refrigerator for the cleaning staff. I hope they enjoyed it.
Jess: I just thought about that too- that we totally left leftovers! Was it ribs?
Pamela: BBQ something. For sure.
Jess: Wasn’t Elton John always playing in the (impossibly long) hallways, too? For sure we heard “tiny dancer” more than once. and maybe “Benny and the Jets”.

PS- the tagline for the Garfield Suites is “Accommodations As Big As A House”. Accurate.

The Prince Conti, New Orleans, LA (French Quater)

prince conti elevatorSource: jess
4550_89763728958_203215_nThe Prince Conti was a gem! Located a block off Bourbon and across the street from a strip club (featuring 1000’s of beautiful girls and 3 ugly ones), Prince Conti was our shining knight. At night. Er, prince. Whatever- it was awesome and had weird cryptic wallpaper (above). NOLA 2009 was our first trip together, and will always hold a place in history as BEST TRIP EVER, NOW WITH MORE CANADIANS. But that’s a story for another day.

Jess: Oh, prince conti!! 1800’s switchboard. keys that were actual keys. Mysterious wallpaper…
Pamela: With a tv that seemed to endlessly play Legally Blonde and Land of the lost. And a very tiny bathroom.
Jess: Yes!! Legally Blonde was on for our entire trip except for the great afternoon of muffalutta illin’. Worth it.

The Flamingo, Las Vegas, NV (In the “newly remodeled” GO room)

73497_491575447287_2857555_nSource: jess
76776_491803622287_8382784_nSource: jess
Jess:
This was actually a pretty nice place- we had a bitchin’ view of the bellagio fountains. But the bathroom door didn’t close all the way, and the entire side of the building was Donnie and Marie. I think they’ve had some work done.
Pamela: They def have had some work done. This room was a pink and white explosion!  One of the coolest, yet not useful at all, things of that room – the tv built into the bathroom mirror. I think I watched something staring David Hasselhoff while putting on my makeup.
Jess: We were totally impressed by that bathroom mirror tv. Where did it come from?? There was no tv poking out the back side. I think we only turned it on that first day.

36282_480940988958_356567_nSource: jess

 

 

 

 

 

An Apartment in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, NY

Summer of 2012, we FINALLY made it to New York City together. Lyn was there, too!! Hotels in NYC are super expensive, so we tried something new and used Airbnb.com and rented the most adorable apartment from the most adorable couple at a ridiculously reasonable rate:

nyc aptSource: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/284682

Jess: I wanted to live here.
Pamela: I loved this apartment!  I feel like it should have been weird to rent out someone else’s home, but it really wasn’t.  And I got to water the plants!
Jess: It made me want to throw out all of my things and start over with better, more purposeful things. I need a photographer to redecorate my house.
Pamela: They had their books arranged by color. I have my books arranged by color! The owners of this apartment also left a very useful guide to the area – restaurants they really liked and things to see and do.

 

Verdict: We would totally use Airbnb again, but apparently people are getting weird about it? So maybe not.

The Grand Palladium-Riviera, Riviera Maya, Mexico

DSC_7123Source: jess
DSC_7262Source: jess
Pamela:
This room was bigger than my house.
Jess: There was beer in the fridge! every day!! We would feed agouti peanut butter puffins off the balcony every morning. I sometimes worry that they grew accustomed to it and are waiting. Or angry.
Pamela: …and yoga….  I did yoga on the balcony.  There was a lot of extra furniture in the room too (but not like golden girls apartment syle), which worked quite nicely when used as wet beach clothes drying racks.
Jess: I could get free wifi from the fancier (!!) rooms if I scrunched myself way up against the wall. But come on Jess- why do you need wifi in Mexico?! Go to the pool bar!!

That’s all the places we’ve been together so far. Where should we go next??

xo,

Jess & Pamela

Thanks, Ne-Yo.

Sometimes the right song comes along at the right time.

Me: I do not want to get up! And I do not want to work out and I hate all my clothes and do not want to leave the house. *pulls covers over head*

Ne-Yo: Let’s go! Make no excuses now I’m talking here and now I’m talking here and now

Me: Just 15 more minutes while I read all of Facebook, Twitter, check Instagram, and see what’s happening in my Google Reader…

Ne-Yo: Let’s go! Your time is running out I’m talking here and now I’m talking here and now

Me: OK! Fine!! Jeez!! But yesterday I didn’t work out and accidentally drank a half bottle of wine and…

Ne-Yo: It’s not about what you’ve done It’s about what you’re doing It’s all about where you going No matter where you’ve been Let’s go!
Let’s go! Let’s go! Let’s go! Let’s go!…

Me: AAAAHHHHH!!! *works out*

Me: *staring at coffee* Now I don’t have time to make a decent lunch. :\

Ne-Yo: There’s vegetables in the freezer! Oh oh oh! Mmmmm Let’s go!*

xo,

jess.

* that’s what he says there, right?