Friday, May 30, 2014

The ABC's of a Stereotypical 20-something

A is for... Anthropologie
And Free People, and Urban Outfitters, and other other store where you can spend upwards of forty dollars on a cotton t-shirt.

B is for.... Brunch
Especially if said brunch takes up your entire Sunday and involves a lot of bottomless alcohlolic beverages.

C is for... CC Cream 
And all the other mysterious beauty products no one understands, like BB creams, and hair meringue, and various vague serums.

D is for... DIY
Because we all absolutely need to make our own coffee tables out of wine corks and artwork out of melted crayons. Because Pinterest said so.

E is for... E!
You're lying if you don't love a little red carpet action, and the speed at which we all know when Kylie Jenner dyes her hair a new color.

F is for... Fun Runs
Because we are apparently living in a world where it's acceptable to ask your friends to run with you in a social setting.

G is for... Girls
If you've never identified with Hannah Horvath while simultaneously hating her with a white hot passion, you haven't really lived.

H is for... Hashtag
Hashtags are things that are making the news these days, folks. It's no longer just about #foodporn or how #blessed you are.

I is for... Instagram
The perfect vehicle for making sure everyone in your social circle sees the cute outfit you wore without actually having to see any of them.

J is for... Juice Cleanse
Because for some reason, no one seems to see the health risks of liquefying all your meals. Solid foods are for Baby Boomers and kids under 16, obviously.

K is for... Kale
Favorite topics of conversation at brunch include your favorite innovative ways to up your kale intake, including an all-kale juice cleanse.

L is for... Loan Debt
Nothing instantly unites a crowd of 20-something acquaintances at a party like bitching about who has the most student loan debt.

M is for... Marilyn Monroe
You haven't lived until you've falsely attributed a wise quote to Marilyn Monroe, or hung a picture of her in your bedroom.

N is for... Netflix
And the Friday nights you spend alone with your laptop, a bottle of Barefoot moscato, and all five seasons of Breaking Bad.

O is for... OkCupid
And Tinder, and all the other online dating systems you will misguidedly try. You'll make an account looking for Prince Charming and delete it after your fifteenth "dtf?" message.

P is for... Pumpkin Spice
Pumpkin spice latte. Pumpkin spice scented candles. Pumpkin Spice body wash. Pumpkin spice cookies. There's no stopping the madness, which is only eclipsed by Starbucks red holiday cups.

Q is for... Queen Bey
Beyonce is literally untouchable at this point. I know "The Beygency" was just a funny SNL skit, but seriously, try saying you don't love Beyonce at a party full of 20-somethings. It will not be pretty.

R is for... Riding Boots
Similar to boat shoes, riding boots are shoes that have been taken out of their original context and used as a fashion statement, regardless of your close relationship to the horse community.

S is for... Selfie
There's literally a song about them.

T is for... Tapas
Nothing says trendy like paying 12 dollars a piece for tiny portions of food that you then get to share with six other people.

U is for... Urbanite
Because the suburbs are really lacking in their brunch options, and your mom's next-door neighbor has probably never heard "Drunk in Love."

V is for... Vodka Sodas
For when you just want to get drunk on a diet and don't give a shit about taste. Kale chips by day, vodka sodas by night.

W is for... Wine
We are the generation they make wine to-go cups for.

X is for... Xanax
Is it surprising that the age group with thousands of dollars in soul-crushing debt might be a tad bit emotionally damaged?

Y is for... Yoga Pants
For the gym, for the grocery store, for nights in with Netflix–– there's no trustier friend than your best pair of yogas.

Z is for... Zumba
Because even our workouts have to be trendy, and squats to "Dark Horse" are so much easier than regular squats.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Sweet Home Chicago

I grew up about an hour outside Chicago, but it wasn't until I came downtown for college that I really became a city girl through and through. After four years of embracing everything the city has to offer, I can't imagine going back to the quiet suburban life.

Under the Red Line

That's why when my friend (and awesome photographer) Jon set out take take some photos of me for my portfolio website, I knew I wanted to reflect my city life in the background. Obviously Chicago has some major tourist attractions that would work for that kind of thing, but I think one of the best things about my city is how quaint some of the neighborhoods are. 

Outside Carol's Pub
That's why we did the photo shoot in Uptown–– downtown is great, but Uptown is full of character and color. It was a lot of fun to walk around and explore, and we were able to get some key parts of city life (like the el tracks) in my photos.

So if you're ever visiting Chicago, when you're through covering all the basics like Navy Pier and the Bean, make sure you head up North for some local Chicago flavor. After all, it's in the different neighborhoods that you'll find the best drink specials, karaoke nights, sidewalk cafes, and boutiques.

And be sure to check out Jon's website and blog! He takes some amazing pictures of life in the city, so even if you can't come visit yourself, you'll feel like you're there. 

Monday, May 26, 2014

What I'm Loving this Week

Joe Biden
Let's be real–– I don't just love VP Joe Biden this week, I love him all the time, as any girl should. But I'm loving Joe especially this week after hearing about his latest super classy move. While most teens are asking Zac Efron or Channing Tatum to prom, Talia Maselli asked Joe Biden. And while his busy, vice-presidential schedule didn't allow him to actually come to prom, he did send her a corsage and invite her to visit him at the White House. Cue the political swoons.

SNL Digital Shorts
I could spend (and have spent) hours on the Lonely Island Youtube page, which is about 50% because they're hilarious and 50% due to my massive crush on Jorma Taccone. Needless to say I was excited to have Andy Samberg hosting SNL last weekend. They never disappoint with the digital shorts, and "Hugs" with Pharrell is one of my new favorite things (although I could never ever pick a favorite). 

Rita Ora for Adidas
I love Rita Ora's style because she always manages to stand out from the pack, and now she's brought her sense of fashion to a major athletic brand. The first leg of her Adidas line launches August 21, and pieces start as low as $30. In an ideal world, the fashion-y athletic wear will motivate me to work out more. We'll see.
Who says checking the weather has to be boring? Thanks to David Krumholtz, who created Weather From, you can now hear the day's weather report courtesy of a Jewish grandmother named Gigi (Krumholtz in hilarious drag). Aside from Weather Puppy, this would definitely take the cake for my favorite way to get my daily forecast.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Steal the Look: Festival Style

Whether you're a fan of Lollapalooza or more of a Coachella girl, there's no denying that after the music, the best part of festivals is the fashion. It's almost like Halloween–– festival-goers go all out in things you could never pull off in everyday life. Except maybe you can.

The biggest trick to pulling off any look is confidence. We can't all afford to go to the concerts, but that doesn't mean we can't get in on the fashion part of it. Here are some styles you can integrate into your normal summer wardrobe that'll look fashion forward and fun without going over the top.

Bleached Cut-offs
When shopping for summer shorts, channel your inner Vanessa Hudgens and pick a high waisted bleached pair like these. They can be paired with almost anything–– a tucked in tank, a crop top, an over-sized t-shirt. They're vintage looking and fun, but still everyday enough to wear hanging out with friends. 

Fringe Maxi Dress
This maxi dress captures a key festival trend––fringe–– in a way that's still wearable for other occasions. And in black, it's incredibly versatile and universally flattering. 

Crochet Crop Top
Crop tops are literally everywhere these days, so they've officially transcended their post as concert-only wear. Try a bustier style, or this loose-fitting crochet detail version.

Tribal Print Peg Pants
This loose-fitting, tribal style is perfect for channeling festival style on cooler summer days. Paired with heels and a blazer they can even contribute to a fun yet professional workplace look. 

Flower Crown
No festival look is complete without a flower crown, but it can be tough to find one to wear for everyday that won't make you look ridiculous. Go for one with smaller flowers like this, and pair it with a flowy black sundress for an ethereal look that isn't too intense.

Chain Hand Jewelry
This ring/bracelet hybrid has been showing up at festivals this season, but they can work with a casual or formal outfit as well. This one is delicate enough that it'll serve as a conversation starter but you won't feel self-conscious about wearing something too out of the ordinary. 

Graphic Tees
Graphic tees are a perfect way to integrate casual festival style into your everyday look. This jersey tee is perfect for a laid back day of shopping, and would look great paired with leather leggings. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Happy Single Girl (She Exists, I Swear)

"Being single used to mean that nobody wanted you. Now it means you're pretty, sexy, and you're taking your time deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend it with."

You could say I'm pretty deeply single. At the grocery store, my roommate made fun of me about how excited I got over the frozen pasta bakes that are made for just one person. But before you get ahead of yourself, this post isn't about my search for a guy. In fact, it's kind of the opposite.

When I was younger, I never felt the need for a serious boyfriend. I loved having crushes, but once they were requited I tended to pump the brakes faster than you can say "monogamous." I preferred to spend my time hanging out with friends or just recharging by myself. The glaring exception to that rule would be my three year relationship in college, which was great in that it taught me to be a more selfless person. But since that ended, I've reverted to my natural state of singledom.

There seems to be this pervasive attitude out there that if you're single, you're forever on the hunt for your next man. It sucks for the girls out there like me, who genuinely just want to date casually with no strings attached. I can't tell you how many guys I've told that I want to "keep things casual," just to have them assume I want to be wooed regardless. Public service announcement: some people actually, really do prefer to be unattached at times.

I'm not saying I want to be alone forever or anything, but where I'm at in life right now isn't very conducive to a serious relationship kind of scenario. I'm insanely busy all the time, so when I do have free time, I don't really want to spend it on a relationship. I'd rather spending it writing, or honestly, just hanging out with friends or my couch. That's not to say that busy people can't be in relationships. They can, and do, and I admire them for it, but I'm not in a position where I want to sacrifice any of my own stuff for someone else. I'm sure eventually I will, but now I just don't.

Unfortunately, when you say you like being single, you're met with a lot of speculation. People assume you aren't in a relationship because no one's interested, or because you don't put yourself out there enough, or any other number of reasons. It's hard for some people to swallow the idea that someone could be single by choice.

So here's my happy single girl manifesto: I don't go to bars in search of my next boyfriend, I go to have fun with my friends. If I say I'm not interested in a boyfriend, that is not a guy's invitation to try harder to convince me. Just as we should respect people's choices within relationships, we should respect their choices out of them. We're not all looking for Mr. Right around every corner. I like to flirt, and I might even go on a couple of dates, but it's okay to not have "boyfriend" in your early 20's vocabulary.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Saturday Round-up: What I'm Loving This Week

ICYMI, I was on #CosmoLive this past Tuesday and it was super wonderfully awesome. I got to video chat in with the editorial staff, as well as Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere and talk social media, blogging, and internet fame. As a Cosmo super-fangirl, it was so cool to "meet" the staff, and they were all so beyond nice. 

Max Greenfield
You probably know him as Schmidt on "New Girl"–– and if you don't, you're seriously missing out. But I just recently saw the rom-com spoof "They Came Together," and while it stars Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd, I felt like Greenfield really stole the show. At this point I've pretty much loved him in everything he's been in, including his guest role as a douchey kindergarten teacher on "The Mindy Project." 

Billed as "H&M's more minimal, elevated, and expensive sister-brand," I was instantly in love–– I'm pretty obsessed with H&M as it is. The pricing is a bit more on the Topshop end of things, but it's still not designer level out of reach. What I love most about the clothes is how simple they are. There's no gimmicks, just really nice pieces.  

"Happy Dogs"
I can't elaborate more, just watch the video:

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The 5 Phases of Moving Back in with your Parents

As almost any college student knows, summer can be a cruel time. As excited as you were for the stress of the semester to end and warm weather to finally appear, the prospect of leaving your independent college life to move back in with the parents sucks. Here's a scientific guide to the roller-coaster of emotions you'll experience.

Phase One: mind-numbing boredom
As college wears on, more and more friends will be spending their summers at internships and on volunteer trips. That leaves you stuck at home with fewer social prospects than ever. Side effects of this phase include, but are not limited to: excessive binge watching of TLC marathons and/or crime shows, the start and ultimate abandonment of new hobbies like knitting or cake decorating, shame sing-alongs to High School Musical, inadvertent obsession with beauty YouTube tutorials.

Phase Two: appreciation
At some (very brief but albeit important) point, you'll secretly love having your mom do your laundry and not having to pay for gas or rent. Your bank account is almost as full as the fridge is full of snacks, both of which are miraculous.

Phase Three: bitterness
It's only a matter of time before cohabitation with your parents begins to irk you–– there's a reason people usually leave the nest after 18. Why does your dad have to monopolize the living room TV with golf shows? Why does your mom care if you make your bed?

Phase Four: denial
This is the part where you convince yourself that your social life doesn't have to suffer just because you're living with mom and dad. This phase results in a lot of unfortunate hangovers where your mom wakes you up at 7 AM to see if you want to go grocery shopping with her. And the ever-awkward "I can't really bring a romantic interest back to my parent's house" dilemma.

Phase Five: acceptance
At some point, you'll give up, drink a lot of wine, and start counting the days until you move back out. Everything is temporary, right?