Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Put a smile on your face!

I am attempting to keep on trucking along on this blog even though my house is kind of in disarray at the moment. Our guest room, which is where I usually take pictures, is currently housing the salvaged contents of my basement and the memory card from my camera is literally full of pictures we took for the insurance company. So it's the i-phone and bathroom mirror for now.
Cardigan: LOFT
Tank: Gap Outlet
Shorts: LOFT
I love that striped cardigan, seriously one of my favorites.. I think I have a
major obsession with stripes.. do I need an intervention? 
The past couple of days have been hurricane aftermath related.. cleaning up the basement, talking to insurance to see what kind of coverage we have, meeting with the contractor, etc. It's all a little stressful and overwhelming and I don't want to turn this post into a rant about it so I won't.

Today consisted of replenishing my fridge at Shoprite. While I was there I saw something that reminded that this is really not a huge deal at all in the grand scheme of life. Inconvenient? Yes. But I can handle inconvenient.

I was supposed to head into work today to set up my classroom but when I called the secretary told me that the custodians were too lazy busy and hadn't gotten to clean our section of the building yet.  Now don't get me wrong, I have nothing but respect for custodians.. or at least the custodial staff that has worked in my building in the past. This current staff? Not so much! They like to play the "we are so busy and understaffed" card waaay too much. I basically cleaned my classroom myself every day last school year and I would go in and clean it again now if they let me. I just want to set up and be prepared for next week. OK so instead of ranting about my basement this turned into a giant complaint about my classroom and custodial staff. Oops, sorry! Oh well, I guess it's extra time with little R and a much needed nap on the agenda instead. I think I'll take it :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

We survived...

Hurricane Irene.. Our basement, sadly, did not :( it flooded and we are faced with gutting it and starting all over. We use our basement as a playroom and family room so this stinks. We are still without power as well.. But the important thing is that we're all safe and everything else will get taken care of in time. Hope to be back up and running soon!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Don't Drink the Water!

Wow, let's hope it doesn't come to THAT this weekend in the northeast. My area of the country is NOT equipped to deal with a storm as large as this Irene is predicted to become. I am hoping that all the hype is for nothing and she goes way off course, but we are ready with water, non-perishables, flashlights, candles and etc. My parents live along the NJ shore and I keep encouraging them to come stay with us this weekend, but they are being typical stubborn little Italian people!  I was going to make a last minute Home Depot run but I called ahead and all items we were looking for were sold out! So this is what wore to run the rest of my last minute hurricane errands. Be safe fellow east coasters!!

Dress: Gap Outlet (a couple of summers ago)
Cardigan: Gap (a while ago)
Belt: Gap Outlet (spring 2011)
Shoes: Gap Outlet (spring 2011)
Necklace: Lia Sophia
Bracelets: Sunshine Daydreams 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

What if a great wave should wash us all away?

From the song PIG by DMB. I know, I know, it's kind of inappropriate, yet so appropriate at the same time! I decided to use the DMB lyrics as my titles this week and I'm sticking to it! Although at this point, I'm not that sorry about not going to the concert. Who wants to be stuck on Governor's Island in the middle of a hurricane? Not I!!  This definitely fit with the theme of my day.. shopping for flashlights and such in case this Irene chick decides to wreak havoc on the the northeast over the weekend. Target was MOBBED. The non-perishable food aisle was insanely packed. But hey, who am I to criticize? I was there too! Running straight to the flashlights when I heard a kid say to his mom "wow there are only 3 left!"

This outfit was actually worn a couple of days ago. About the pony tail.. it's a fact of my life since I had Robert. I don't wash my hair every day. That might seem gross lazy to some people, but, well, OK maybe it is (slightly). My hair is very thick, naturally wavy but not curly which = frizziness if I don't style on a regular basis.  I either straighten it, which means I can get another day out of it being straight without washing or I go wavy, which means the next day it will be in a pony tail. I think I have worn my hair wavy almost every day this summer. Last winter I cut it into a short bob and I loved it.. but it was a lot of work.. I had to straighten it every day and no pony tails. BUT it was really cute/flattering so I might do it again this fall/winter. We'll see!

Shirt: Gap Outlet (summer 2011)
Cutoffs: Gap Outlet (summer 2010)
Belt: NY&Company (spring 2011)
Flippies: OLD Navy (long time ago)
Necklace: Lia Sophia 

This necklace reminds me of a Dave Matthews Band concert,
I am totally wearing it to the next one I go to! 

Yikes! I am shiny. Anyone have a foundation compact?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"For a moment this good time would never end..."

From the Dave Matthews band song "stay". Not really one of my favorites but very fitting for my life right now.. I only have a few more days home with my little Mr. R.. He goes back to school on Monday. I am feeling emotional about this, as I have every year since he started daycare 2 years ago. I know it's good for him, he gets to socialize with kids his age, he is learning a lot, etc. etc. But part of me has always wanted to be a stay at home mom and it bugs me a little every September when I have to send him back. So I'm making the most of our few days home together before I head back to the grind.

We kept things laid back today and had a play date with the neighbor kids. I decided to layer this Gap Outlet peach ruffle tank with a green striped tank underneath, just to try something different, and because I am slightly obsessed with stripes! I've worn some version of stripes every day this week so far!

green striped tank: Gap Outlet (summer 2010)
peach ruffle tank: Gap Outlet (summer 2011)
shorts: Gap Outlet (summer 2011)
shoes: Kenneth Cole reaction (2 years ago)
necklace: charminngcharlie

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


We just felt an earthquake here in NJ and I feel I have to blog about this! I was standing in my kitchen making some espresso and I felt the house move or "shift". My first thought was I was having a dizzy spell.. my mom, who was in the house with me, didn't feel a thing so I really thought it was all in my head! UNTIL I saw my light fixtures swinging back and forth!! Then I went outside and all the neighbors were out there talking about it. Crazy scary! Thank goodness everyone is all right (I have very close family who work in NYC) and the house seems fine. Hope everyone in the east coast area who felt this is doing OK!!

"Goes to visit his mommy...

she feeds him well, his concerns, he forgets them, and remembers being small... playing under the table and dreaming..."

Ahh, from the classic DMB song Ants Marching. That line of the song reminds me of home, and being with my mom. My parents sold our childhood home a couple of years ago which was very sad. So many great memories were created in that house and it was hard to let it go. But I find that, for me anyway, home is where my mom is. The familiar smell of espresso brewing, or sauce simmering, and I'm home again, under the table and dreaming.

On an outfit note, this LOFT dress has been one of my go to pieces for the entire summer. I love the colors, the stripes, the drawstring at the waste. I think it might even work for fall with a cardigan and flats. What do you think?

Dress: LOFT (summer 2011)
Shrug Sweater: NY&Co (a couple of years ago)
Flip Flops: Old Navy (old)
Necklace: Sunshine Daydreams

Monday, August 22, 2011

Grey Street

This week I've decided to title each of my posts with a song title or lyric from my favorite band, The Dave Matthews Band, since I won't be able to see them perform live this weekend at Governor's Island :(

Yesterday we were invited to an impromptu pot luck BBQ at my in-laws house but the torrential rain storms ruined the BBQ part.   We made the best of it inside anyway. My shorts were probably a little too short for such bad weather, but my chambray shirt was perfect. I bought it at LOFT pretty recently with the cool late summer/early fall weather in mind! Nothing fancy about this outfit, but I love the simplicity of it.

Shirt: LOFT (still available on-line here
Shorts: Really, really, really OLD navy :)
Shoes: Kenneth Cole Reaction very similar here
Necklace: Lia Sophia

Friday, August 19, 2011

FBFF: Keep Dreaming!

This is the first time I've participated in a Fashion Beauty Friend Friday at modlychic. I'm excited because I really like this topic: Dream Jobs

I don't have any interesting "I would love to be a writer" pics, but the beach
has always been great inspiration! 

1. Fess up, if you could do anything professionally what would it be? 
I would love to be a writer or an author. I was an English major in college and although my concentration was literature, many of my elective courses were in writing. I absolutely loved it. I really enjoyed creative writing, even journalism, and my favorite course was on memoir writing. I wrote a piece for my final which was eventually published in a book. I'll never forget when that book came and I saw my story and my name printed on it. It was one of the proudest moments of my life!

2. What draws you to this?
I just love to write. It's been like therapy for me. I wrote a lot in college and kind of got away from it as a young adult. This past year has kind of been a topsy turvy one for me. That prompted me to start this blog. I thought it would be fun to do the fashion stuff and a great way to get myself writing again.

3. When did you first start dreaming about this ideal?
When I was a young girl I was obsessed with all of the "babysitter club" books. I read them, and re-read them, and re-re-read them! I used to think, "I would LOVE to write books like this!" Then in college when I saw my first article published on the front page of our school newspaper, I thought, "wow, I can do this!"

4. What's hold you back from going all in?
Having a family and a home and a mortgage means I have to have an income. It would be great to just write full time and see where it goes, but not realistic at this point in my life. I do feel passionate about my current profession (teaching) and I love to teach writing to my little students. It always amazes me how they come into school barely writing their name and they leave writing 4 sentence paragraphs. I feel proud knowing I taught them that. It's pretty neat :)

5. Sometimes the first step is the hardest. What's one step you can take now on the way to realizing your dreams? 
Well I think I did take a step by starting this blog about a month ago, even if it was just a baby one. If anything it has me writing about something every day!

Head over to modlychic to read more responses to these questions!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Party in the USA

 I couldn't think of a creative name for this post and I've had that song stuck in my head since yesterday. Don't ask me why. I don't even like that song! But it's been playing over and over again! I guess it's fitting because this LOFT top reminds me of a party. The layers and polka dots are so fun and festive! I definitely hope to get a couple more wears out of this before summer is over. This is an outfit I would wear out to lunch  and shopping (which is what I'm doing today) or even to work on a dress down day, but I would definitely keep the sweater on all day or wear a more closed cardigan for work.

Top: LOFT (summer 2011, no longer available)
Sweater: NY&Company (spring 2011)
Trouser Jeans: LOFT (winter 2011)
Wedges: Bandolino
Necklace: Lia Sophia

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Fall Wish List

Back to work is right around the corner for me and it has me internet window shopping for cute new styles. Here are some items I would love to add to my wardrobe this fall..
Stipes! Need I say more? This is a fun sweater from Old Navy.

I love the rusty orange color of this NY&Company corduroy skirt. I can see wearing this with tall boots or flats.
Colorful cardigans like this one from Old Navy to add to the basic colors I already own. 
This sweater from Old Navy looks really cozy and I love the toggle details. 

I love the colors and style of this dress from NY&Company.
I like to have flow when I wear dresses to work since I''m constantly moving around
my classroom when working with the kids.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Crank Monster

Eh today is just one of those days. Rainy this morning, kind of sunny this afternoon. I've had little motivation to do much of anything. I am the type of person who must leave the house at least once a day or I tend to go a little batty and get really cranky. I couldn't think of anything great to do so it's been an indoor day complete with nap for both R and me. The nap made me a little crankier somehow! Thank goodness we have outings scheduled for the next couple of days! 

Anyway, I feel I'm in a clothing/outfit rut.  Or maybe I am feeling slightly intimidated by this fashion blogging, like everyone is really creative and interesting and I'm just kind of boring. But then I tell myself this is me, this is how I dress.  My hair isn't always going to be perfect, I don't have all the latest and greatest clothing. Maybe someone will see something cute and get an idea, maybe they won't, but I want to keep this blog up for myself and see how it evolves. OK that's over.. phew I feel better now :)  

Tunic: LOFT outlet (last year)
Jeans: Banana Republic outlet (2 years ago)
Sandals: Alfani (Macy's) a really long time ago
Jewels: Lia Sophia 

Sunshine Daydreams

This is not a post about me dreaming of sunshine on a cloudy day :) It's actually the name of a cute little shop in Point Pleasant Beach NJ. Let me start off by saying I am no way affiliated with this store, I just think they sell super cute stuff and wanted to share.

Sunshine Daydreams is mainly an accessory shop. They sell great costume jewelry, hair accessories, tote bags, scarves, and fun whimsical items (think key chains, travel mugs, jewelry cases and catch alls). This shop is located very close to where my parents live and I literally have to stop myself from pulling over and going in whenever I visit or I will spend major $$. It's a great go to place for gifts (and I almost always end up getting a gift for myself as well :) They are affordable as well. So if you are ever in the NJ shore area or know anyone who lives in NJ, let them know about this great little place! Here are some of my favorites:

My most recent purchase! I love the colors, perfect for fall!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Rainy Days and Mondays...

...always get me down! Well not always, and not this Monday because I bought a shawl sweater at LOFT recently that is perfect for a rainy summer day. It has a hood. I love hoods! I was also excited to put on my J.Crew rain boots that I haven't worn since spring. I never thought I would be excited to pull these out again because they got so. much. use. last winter/spring between the crazy snow and torrential storms we had. But after a few months they feel new again. It's always fun to pull out items that haven't been worn in a while. Makes me look forward to fall, crisp mornings, boots, sweaters, tights, etc. What items are you looking forward to wearing again as the season changes?
I tried it tied 
And left open 
Tank: H&M (pretty old)
Shawl: LOFT recent purchase, no longer available on-line, check stores
Jeans: Old Navy (2 years ago)
Rain Boots: J.Crew (Christmas gift from a couple of years ago)
I was tempted to pose outside with my navy umbrella that matches my navy
rain boots but I chickened out! 

Ring & Earrings Lia Sophia 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tomato Bruschetta Garlic Bread

There is nothing earth shattering about this recipe. It's just light and tasty summer fair. Bruschetta is one of my favorite appetizer or side dishes. It's easy to make, pretty healthy and yummy!

All you will need is a large tomato, garlic, parmesan cheese, bread, butter, olive oil, and seasonings.


First chop up some garlic. I used 1 clove and this recipe served just my husband and myself. You can use more or less depending on how many people are eating and your overall love and tolerance for garlic (garlic + me = love)  Next get out your tomato and chop that up into medium sized chunks. I used about half of a large tomato. 

Combine the tomato and garlic and put in a bowl. Add a couple of table spoons of olive oil, some parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and basil (I like to use fresh basil, but did not have any on hand so I used the seasoning). Mix it all together.
Now it's time to get your garlic bread ready. I used less than half of a loaf of Italian bread. Slice it in half. Add butter, pepper, garlic powder, more fresh garlic (or you can omit that if you don't want it to be too garlic heavy) and whatever other seasonings your prefer.
I put mine in the broiler for about 3 minutes, until the butter is melted and the bread is golden and toasty. 

Now just add the tomato bruschetta to your bread and get ready to eat! This is perfect with pasta, or a meat dish, or on it's own for a light summer meal. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Playing Closet Dress Up

Every once in a while I like to play "dress up" in my own closet. Of course I don't have much time to do this anymore, but last night, the babe was sleeping and I had lots of caffein running through my system and felt wired, so I decided to shop my closet.  I grabbed one of my favorite shirt dresses and started thinking of different ways I can style it.  When I saw this really cute shirt dress and tie combo on Kish I thought it was a great idea, but don't know if I can pull off an actual tie yet, just don't feel brave enough! So I looked through my closet and tried some different things, different belts, scarves, and finally settled on a pink sash thing (I have NO idea where this even came from!). I removed the cheap fabric belt from the shirt dress and pulled the pink sash through.
Sorry for the awful photo quality, I was too lazy to go
downstairs and grab my camera so the iphone had to do.
Closer look at the sash
I think I like this and would definitely be able to wear it to work. Believe it or not, using the sash as a belt is out of my comfort zone. Baby steps!

I also dug these oldies out of my jewelry box.  They are murano glass beads that I purchased on a trip to Venice Italy many years ago. The colors tied in very well with the sash.  The shoes are Kenneth Cole unlisted via Marshalls.

Dress: H&M (3 years ago)
Shoes: Kenneth Cole Unlisted via Marshalls
Necklace & Bracelet: Italy
sash: ??