September 27, 2013

Another Year Older and...Wiser?

So, last Friday was my birthday, and I have now officially been 36 years old for a whole week.  I'm just gonna let that sink in for a bit.....
Actually, I've been stewing over it almost the whole week.  Okay, maybe not "stewing" as in worrying about it, but definitely "stewing" as in really thinking about where I am in life and more importantly, where I want to be.  I know it's been quiet around here, but there's been some big thinking going on at home.

I do like being 36.  I like really knowing who I am.  I like my style more now.  I've got the relationship I want because I'm no longer afraid to ask for what I need.  I've got life experience; I've grown quite a bit from even my 30th birthday.  I'm thankful for all of that.

But of course, as with anything, there are not so great aspects of getting older.
Things I don't like about being my version of 36:
I can't hang anymore, party wise.  It just takes too long to recover!
It takes a loooooong time and a lot of work to lose 5 pounds.
It also only takes one weekend of indulging in food and drink to put on said 5 pounds!
I've become a homebody.  While I don't necessarily not like being a homebody, I do miss out on some fun things because it's Tuesday and it's 8pm and I just don't want to get dressed and go back out! 

All that said, I do want to make some changes and improvements to the current status quo.  I thought it would be prudent of me to write down some things I want to accomplish over this next year of life.  It always helps to have goals, right?

 1.  Be a regular morning workout person.  I always love how I feel ALL day after a morning workout.  It is an easy way for me to really start the day in a positive head space.  I am often times very lazy about getting up in time to workout before 6am, but I'm also lazy about getting back out of the house to go workout after I get home from work!  Plus, the gym is MUCH less crowded in the early a.m. I want to make this a priority.  Those 5 pounds aren't going to lose themselves!

 2.  Save my money.  And this is a BIG one for me.  Since I have a bit of a financial hole to fill, this is how I may have to save...penny by penny!  But I've crunched some numbers and, if I try really hard, I can get it done in a reasonable amount of time.  I am SO looking forward to the day I can say I'm completely debt free! 

 3.  Take advantage of the awesome free things!  There are probably a hundred and one free things to do in Dallas in a given month.  From park parties with music to free fall concerts to the now free for everyone Dallas Museum of Art, I really need to get out and explore.  Being able to do fun things and not spend money will definitely help with that whole saving thing. And may actually get me out of the house on a Tuesday. (Photo by Faith DeSmet)

4.  Elevate my style.  And not so much with new stuff (saving my money!), but with things I already have, mixed up in different ways.  I am terrible at doing this.  But I resolve to try harder from now on.  For instance, I have a chambray shirt...the one all the style bloggers say is such a great basic and can be worn so many different ways.  They've even shown me how.  But I NEVER wear mine.  Like, ever.  I must find a way to wear this shirt at least three ways.  Then I should find a way to wear everything in my closet at least three ways.  Is that even possible?  I hope so!

Like, how cute is this?!

And this...

And I'm totally into this.  Challenge accepted.  Now, come on fall temps!!

 Happy Friday! 

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 17, 2013

The Power of Love

Ever been in love?  I have.  It's beautiful, exciting, passionate, intoxicating.  It's also painful, stressful, and very emotionally risky.  Love is, after all, what makes this life liveable; and also what makes this life feel completely unbearable at times.

When I first heard of Marina Abramovic, an NYC based Serbian performance artist, I saw this video:

The story (from Wikipedia): " In 1988, after several years of tense relations, Abramović and Ulay decided to make a spiritual journey which would end their relationship. Each of them walked the Great Wall of China, starting from the two opposite ends and meeting in the middle. As Abramović described it: “That walk became a complete personal drama. Ulay started from the Gobi Desert and I from the Yellow Sea. After each of us walked 2500 km, we met in the middle and said good-bye." Abramović conceived this walk in a dream, and it provided what she thought was an appropriate, romantic ending to a relationship full of mysticism, energy, and attraction.”

I was transfixed.  I cried a little.  Then I smiled a little.  So emotional and beautiful...I felt like I could understand exactly what these two were feeling.  Anyone who's been in love probably can.  Even though the two apparently met and spoke before this show, the emotional reactions here seem very real to me.  Every now and then, this video pops into my mind and I have to go watch.  I feel like it reminds us that, whatever happens in life, real love is forever.  Even if you no longer have the actual in-person relationship, even if you knew it wasn't right or that the relationship had run it's course and you parted ways, the love you felt never really goes away.  I think that's a good thing.  It's good to have love in your heart.  We all know the world needs more love...sweet love.

There are a million writings about love and relationships.  I've read quite a few!  But one in particular sticks out for me.  I've often said that, to me, it pretty much sums up the meaning of life.

"Love anything that lives...a person, a pet, a plant...and it will die.  Trust in anyone, and you may be hurt.  Depend on anyone, and that one may let you down.  The price of [love] is pain.  If someone is determined not to risk pain, then such a person must do without many things--getting married, having children, the ecstasy of sex, the hope of ambition, friendship-- all that makes life alive, meaningful and significant.  Move out or grow in any dimension and pain as well as joy will be your reward.  A full life will be full of pain.  But the only alternative is not to live fully, or not to live at all."  --M. Scott Peck in The Road Less Traveled

May you all have a love-ly afternoon.

xo :)

 Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 16, 2013

Monday-itis Medicine

Oh, hello again, Monday.  Thank you for the humidity this morning.  It's great for my hair.

My iPhone went for a dip in the pool over the weekend and is now fried.

There is this negativity (really upsetting), and also this (even more upsetting).

In spite of these things, I must find some positivity.  Some cuteness.  Some people being nice to one another.  Some happy news.

The handsome JGL with baby kitteh.  Cuteness.  (OUT magazine)

Here are 101 Inspiring happiness quotes.  I think I shall read them all today.
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” Aesop (Positivity Blog)

 Ten better body affirmations for women.  "You don’t owe your body to anyone. Not sexually, not aesthetically. Your body is yours. Period."  Positivity.  (The Frisky)

A real-life "Field of Dreams?"  Here are some people being nice to each other. (ABC News)

Other good things about today:  
We were out of cereal this morning, so my sweet bf made me a strawberry banana smoothie.  Love him.
I found Funyuns in the office vending machine...woo hoo!
No cat puke, dead battery, or work wardrobe issues today.
Only two more work days until I'm off for five days.  Happy Monday!

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 13, 2013

Street Style Fridays

These are a few photos that stood out for me while browsing through street style photos from New York Fashion Week.  And by stood out, I mean something I might could actually see myself wearing.  There were quite a lot of crazy cool wacky bright looks that I saw and thought, wow!  But these are the ones I can most relate to.
 This high-waisted skirt with pockets looks comfy and super stylish.  You could do so many things with this, but I'm loving the simplicity of this look a lot.

Bright color with neutral print...yes!  One of the combos I totally dig and am looking forward to perfecting this year.

For some reason this reminds me of an outfit I had many years ago in like, 1999.  But it looks so, so chic here and I would absolutely do this today.

I so love this purple floral top and pink heels.  I actually wouldn't mind if I was wearing this outfit right now!

I really want to wear this out next Saturday night!  How great is this jacket?!

Linda Fargo of Bergdorf Goodman--I hope I am this stylish and cute when I am 50-something.  She is fab!

There are untold numbers of super stylish people that inspire me in New York City, and everywhere around the world.  Just 10 minutes clicking through photos on Chictopia will give you so many different perspectives!  I also know that there are tons of unique people in my own little corner of Earth, in and around Dallas.  I've decided I'm going to pay just a tiny bit more attention to the style around me, and maybe feature some looks I see around town here on the blog.  I think it will be fun to see just how great the inspiration can be right here at home.  Stay tuned!

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 11, 2013


On this day, a little ode to NYC, a city I can't wait to get back to. 

The boyfriend and me in Battery Park last year. X's and O's Manhattan.  I hope to see you again soon.

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

Cute Shoe Alert!

Today seemed like a good day to wear bright red shoes with a bright pink cap toe.  So I did!

Cap-toe pumps - ShoeMint (similar here and here)
Pencil skirt and top - The Limited

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 10, 2013

Zara Cravings

I'm quite sure that I need all of these pieces from Zara right this minute.  Ok, need may be a little too strong, since I already told myself I was done shopping for fall save for one pair of perfectly ripped and not-too-baggy boyfriend jeans.  But WANT is definitely the case.

Perfect. Basic. Blazer.
And how adorbs is this butterfly sweater? Totes.

Beautiful blue print.  I've been noticing skirts like this around the interwebs and this one really does it for me.
Why not?  I could class this up for work with my black blazer or wear it to dinner with booties and my moto jacket.  Yes please.
Because I don't have one.  And everyone should have one.
Well, I am about to be needing a new black bag.  And why not one with a little pop of the color of the season?

I can't explain why I'm drawn to this.  I own nothing even remotely like it.  But I love it.
Because next to blue, green is my fave.  And the texture on this looks divine.  And you can never have too many great jackets to go with all of your basic tees.
To dress up my jeans, white tee, and black blazer.  Gorgeous.

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 9, 2013

Monday-itis Medicine

If you know me, you may be aware of my aversion to Monday.  I dread Monday.  It always comes too fast.  It means my weekend is over.  It somehow makes my morning alarm sound SO loud, even though I have not adjusted the volume on said alarm in weeks.  It's just...ugh.

My Mondays are notorious for throwing problems at me first thing in the morning.  Cat puke on the carpet at 7am (that's fun to wake up to), a dead car battery, not enough milk for my cereal, I can't find my favorite bra and I proceed to tear apart my bedroom searching for it and then I discover it in my gym bag from Friday still unwashed and now I must decide on a different top because the dirty bra is the only bra that can go with the top I have picked out and this will make me late to work because I haven't packed my lunch or made my smoothie yet.  Dammit!

My name is Monica, and I have chronic Monday-itis.

Don't laugh!  It's a real, serious condition.  Ok, maybe not really, but it puts me in a MOOD!

In an effort to reduce my Monday-itis induced symptoms (bitch face, grumpy demeanor, general malaise) I have decided to notice the light inside and find some things to be happy about on Mondays.  I think I shall make this a regular thing.  Perhaps I should also better my morning time management skills??  That's a whoooooole other post...

So, no more bitch face, no more grumpy grump today, because there are several things making my Monday a good day...

A fresh red manicure for fall.  Now if only the temperatures would cooperate and get fall-like!

Some Monday morning body positivity via Go Kaleo.  We're all beautiful girls, it's time we accept ourselves and each other!

Discovering this blog was a definite plus this Monday.   It's written by the former editor of Lucky magazine, Kim France.  I was a long time subscriber to Lucky, and I always liked her editor's letter and seeing things from her perspective.  Since I am a girl of a certain age, this is a web space I shall be frequenting quite often from now on!

And this, last but most certainly not least, is the bestest awesomest thing about's my baby sister's 17th birthday!

This is her at prom this past April.  She is quite lovely, no?  Naturally gorgeous (she got the red hair, no fair!), athletic, and whip smart, she makes me hopeful for the next generation.  But, no pressure, ok Shelby??  Haha.  Happy happy birthday dear sissy and I miss and love you tons! ;)

And a happy Monday to one and all.

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+

September 6, 2013

Casual Friday

Aaaaaaahhh, Friday!  How I love thee.  Especially since I get to wear jeans and sandals to work today!

Top and Jeans (on sale!) - The Limited // Sandals - Mix No. 6 (similar) // Bracelets - Accessory Fanatic

I have been in L.O.V.E with this top since I spotted it on sale online a few weeks ago.  So many different colors and a wacky pattern but it all somehow works.  Perfect!
It's the the contrasting trim at the top and the little gold buttons down the back (that you totally can't see here! oops) that make me even happier.  And trust, this tank will absolutely be transitioning to fall.  I'm excited to style it with my sky high black booties and moto jacket.  

*Ahem...Mother Nature, I'm so over the heat and humidity...any chance you can hurry up with the fall temps please??  It's kind of sweaty taking pictures outside.  Thank you kindly.*
Just putting that out into the universe...  :)

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

xo :)

Follow me!   Facebook   Bloglovin'  Instagram  Google+