Wednesday, December 19, 2012

SLW pick me up

Happy Almost Christmas but more importantly Happy Single Lady Wednesday!

First things first. I've been cracking up over this video for DAYS now and need to share it with you. It's an oldie but so... SO good. Also this may describe a lot of single lady lives. Leeeeet's be real.

It's definitely been a busy holiday season over here at my house and I'm trying to keep busy to avoid the terrible syndrome that befalls single women. It's called winter. Winter induces such exaggeration and ridiculousness in my life. I'm the only one alone. I'm going to DIE alone. of hypothermia. in a snow bank. Did I mention I was alone? It just piles on. Like the snow I'm going to die in.

In the meantime I have thrown myself into giving gifts, baking and even knitting a little bit *gasp!* to keep my mind off of traveling over to the deep end of things. I've also started to look forward to the new year and what it will bring. Either way, I'm ready for it and excited to share lots and lots of single lady anecdotes with you here.

Happy Wednesday again!

p.s. check out my sweet Christmas cookies on Katherine's blog! They're STUPID easy and perfectly tasty.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Once a Night Owl Always...

I seem to be the most awake at night. My body has never been programmed to be asleep early even when I was little. All the best adventures happened at night. Bowls of ice cream were ALWAYS snuck at night. All of my senior show was ONLY created between the hours of 11pm and 3am. Night Owl Bakery (the bakery in my brainz) came into idea being when I realized I bake ONLY AT NIGHT.

It's how I operate.

Tonight I...

- practiced a little brush tip calligraphy while being impatient for my new supplies to get to me (my new endeavor is calligraphy. we'll see how long that lasts... Hopefully I don't grow bored of it cuz it's the most beautiful art. My love of letters hasn't gone away so we will see...)

- killed a fly using the most stealthy of tactics. Standing on my bed. Turned into jumping on my bed. Turned into some kind of Bollywood shakedown dancing ON MY BED. But that fly is DEAD.

- ate Cocoa Puffs. 

- found out I really like Sierra Mist Cranberry

- started organizing my iTunes library for REAL

Honestly I make no sense. But all of these activities seem okay to do... right now. 

I know there are other night owls like me out there right??

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

SLW Catches Up

Hey guys! It's been so long! This is the first Wednesday in a month that I haven't been working and it's WONDEROUS.

Let's see... what are the HAPPS:

- I had a cat! Had being the functioning verb here. I don't have a cat anymore. I returned Winston to his foster home because it wasn't a good fit. I don't think I would have known that had I not tried. I'm glad that there were no hard feelings from the foster parents either. They're kind of the coolest people ever and I'm secretly hoping we'll be friends.

- I got commissioned to make another cheesecake! Whoa now! Whoa. Things are happening... Somebody get me some ham! (Liz Lemon.) Is using the word 'commissioned' okay in a food sense?

- I have not exactly felt like myself lately - a few things happened that really shook me and took my confidence way way down but I'm starting to make a comeback. Someone asked if I had a boyfriend because I was so chipper yesterday. I laughed for approximately 14 minutes and then responded, "No." Who needs a person to make them happy? Pfft. That's sooo not the SLW way.

- Pretty addicted to doing laundry. No lie. What is going on. Send help.

- My bike has become a very expensive, yet effective, bra drying receptacle. I'm starting to think I should sell it. : (

That is my life so far... laundry and cheesecake. I was a cat lady for 2 days until I realized I'm not a cat lady. I'm just a lady who enjoys the company of cats and then maybe I leave them at the house in which they live. I am going to start on this cheesecake with Vivaldi's "Four Seasons" which seems so appropriate seeing that winter is creeping it's icy fingers into town.

Also, on a random note, I'd like to get coffee and scones with all of you. Let's make that happen sometime in the next few months. As it turns out, I quite love you all.

Happy Wednesday

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Everyone? Meet my newest little friend, Winston. I've never had a cat before and so far he's really cute... and really spoiled. He wants to cuddle no joke ALL THE TIME and he sleeps on your collar bone. He's 8 weeks old and he has a cold so he sneezes. It's quite possibly the cutest thing alive. Real talk? He's kind of a jerk. Like... when you have a kid and you love them so much but they're the most obnoxious jerky people as toddlers? It's like that. We're definitely getting used to each other.  

Find me on Instagram at abbyblujay for more photos of Winston... probably every day forever. 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

a moment for thanks

This past week has been really rough. One of those weeks that lays me low and makes me want to never leave my house again. But that's not real life.

It takes a really good friend to give you helpful advice and encouragement... and remind you that there are Snickers ice cream bars in the world.

And I am really thankful for that.

Here's to a better week and a freezer full of love.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


I've been commissioned! For food that is. I'm making a friend's wedding cheesecake (CHEESECAKE) for her impending nuptials this weekend and I am exCITED. I can't even fully talk about it... I just keep smiling and nodding and showing people THIS PICTURE of the tester cheesecake. and then smiling and nodding. Such is my life.

Bacon caramel chocolate cheesecake that shouldn't make sense but it does. It makes ALL of the sense that has ever been made ever. This should be it's own category really.

Can you tell I'm slightly excited?? I'll update with how everything turns out after Saturday.

Here's to new adventures!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Single Lady Talks Real II

Respect yourself enough to be well satisfied with how you look when you leave the house. If it means you HAVE to shower then you need to get up earlier. I don't always shower daily - who does... DON'T JUDGE - but you will never EVER know it. If I'm running to get something from the store, even if I'm out for 5 minutes, put on skinny jeans not sweatpants, earrings not a hoodie.

Do your hair. WASH your hair at least. Your limp noodle greasy high school zero period hair no longer cuts it as a lady in the real world. 

Not a huge make-up fan? I totes am NOT. But! Tinted lip balm is a thing that is awesome. Heck VASELINE works as lip gloss. Just do it. 

Know these things and have them in your arsenal of power. They'll never fail you.

You deserve to be respected. Respect yourself. 

is it okay that i think having an arsenal of power is thing that needs to be real? yeah... 

(the only acceptable time I've found running out in pj's is okay is for emergency ice cream. EMERGENCY. ICE CREAM. is REAL.)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

SLW does shopping

Sometimes you just have to get yourself up, get yourself to Starbucks in spite of the sky looking like it's going to rain down terrible things on you and GO SHOPPING. Turns out I'm REALLY good at shopping too. I got all sorts of unnecessary but DEFINITELY necessary goodness.


...the worlds most perfect mustard yellow cardigan known to man. Thank you Arissa for your infinite widsom.

...a shake... from Godiva chocolate. Yeah... next to the chocolate covered strawberries and behind the champagne truffles they make SHAKES. You know what I think they put in it?  HEAVEN. 

...Well this one is fuzzy because I walked into Paper Source and I BLACKED OUT. And I woke up outSIDE of Paper Source with a giant bag of things. I'm gonna leave it at that. 

......the same thing happened at Sur La Table! Wouldn't you just know it.........

... I decided not to get anything from Lush because their sales people are all up in your face! What's up with that... even at MY job we don't do that. I get that your bucket smells like ROSES but please. Back up off. I think if I had a tub that was big enough for baths I'd like it more. 

check that cardigan action!

All in all it was a good, MUCH NEEDED day.

Happy Wednesday!

p.s. - I wore my blazer today! I mean WHAT!? I had on jade green pants and a BLAZER. Who am I?!
p.p.s. - I need to change my girls clothes up there. It is NOT tank top weather anymore...

Thursday, October 4, 2012

What to do when you have to poop at Target

1. You ignore it. You keep walking, picking up that knitted throw blanket with interest. There is no urge. I don't even know what poop IS.

2. You start running through aisles knocking everything into your cart that you think you need, but have totally forgotten cuz all you can think is that you need to poop. "I HAVE TO GET EVERYTHING RIGHT NOW. AND TAKE IT HOME. DO I NEED THESE DOG TREATS?! I DON'T HAVE A DOG BUT I'M GONNA GET THEM. *keeps running* JUST GET IT IN MY HOUSE AND RUN TO THE BATHROOM."

3. You stop randomly in the middle of aisles, just WILLING your intestines to not feel what they're feeling.

4. You justify it. You're a grown woman. THIS is a NATURAL part of LIFE for Pete's sake! You walk briskly to the bathroom before you poop your pants because this is an actual thing that may happen at any moment.

5. When another woman walks in and does the same thing you think, "I don't judge you. We are kindred. We are HUMANS. This is natural. HUZZAH TO YOU."

6. You continue shopping leisurely, contemplating whether or not to get BOTH colors of washi tape. And you do... you do.

** this may or not be a real story based off my life

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

SLW: grey days

I am READY for today. The past week has just been customers yelling at me because I can't MAKE an iPhone from scratch to give to them and lots and LOTS of things to fix. It ended with me lying face down on my living room floor. Adult temper tantrums are real guys. They're SUCH a thing.

Today is a quintessential Chicago fall day. Grey skies and the trees have officially turned all my favorite colors. Though if the trees could turn mint green I would really enjoy that...

Today is...

...a day to lay in bed and play Bejeweled until you can actually feel your stomach eating itself.

...a day for a large cup of coffee... only to pour that cup into a LARGER cup of coffee. and pour more coffee into that larger cup

...a day for Rainbow Cake (I will have to break down the anatomy of this cake) AND ice cream. For breakfast. VALIDATED.

...a day for TARGET. To browse the aisles slowly, not looking for anything in particular. Except maybe more things from Patch NYC. 

...a day to listen to the church bells that play 20 feet from my apartment at 12 and 6 every day. It makes me feel like I'm in a movie - it CAN'T be real right? 

...a day to find Diary of a Mad Black Woman on tv and sincerely enjoy watching all of it unabashedly. I'm not even a little bit ashamed!

...a day to listen to my Temper Trap & Passion Pit playlist on shuffle all day long. 

...a day just to take some quiet time for yourself... when the entire week has just been one long yell. And remembering to be thankful always. 

Happy Wednesday everyone! Slow down just for like 5 minutes today. Have popcorn for dinner. No one's judging!

p.s. if you follow me on Twitter sorry for all the yelling gripes this week. Was I kidding about the adult tantrums? I was not. It's a new day though : )

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

SLW: single lady advantages

Lately I have succumbed to "the loneliness" which I'm pretty sure is it's own entity. It befalls single women when they see no less than 10 friends on Facebook deliver fresh and cute babies, no less than 4 get engaged in the same weekend, no less than 5 get married and no less than 40 BILLION become pregnant all at the same. dang. time. It's like SYNCHRONIZE YOUR WATCHES! And as much as I love... rejoicing over the good news about your adooorable baby that sleeps SO WELL, your giant sized engagement ring, looking through your 500 picture album of your wedding like my fingers can't control themselves, and the beautiful, fertile, fact that your baby is now the size of a cumquat *squee! barf.* I really cannot handle it... anymore. Cue crying myself to sleep. Lamenting over lack of man. Overdosing on ice cream. Imminent, infinite, food comas caused by pity baking sessions.

I'm tired of hearing MYSELF complain because I truly am happy about other people's joy. These are all awesome, amazing occasions that no one should censor... just at the end of MY day I sleep in a twin bed with a pillow aptly named by Bed, Bath & Beyond as "boyfriend" ya know? These are things that happen.

There are advantages to both sides of the coin though. I get to see all the married/pregnant advantages... daily (thanks Facebook.) but rarely do I remember that single ladies HAVE IT GOOD.

For starters... no pants! no bra. I can scratch my own arm pit at home without the slightest afterthought of "if I do this... will you think I don't wash there?"
Ice cream as dinner
Ice cream as BREAKFAST
Brownie as breakfast before ACTUAL breakfast
No pressure to shave... A THING.
Sleeping in.
Sleeping in, getting up, eating, and SLEEPING AGAIN!
Burping loudly.
Buying Coca-cola for the express intention of burping loudly
Going out, lookin' sexy for no dang reason!
Lipstick on a Monday.
wearing ALLL the granny panties. no risk!
I cook for me! and no one else. What picky eaters?
Pizza in the morning
Pizza in the evening
Pizza at supper time
Pizza on a bagel
substitute fries for "pizza" too
doing all those crazy crafts without your husband being like 'what... are you DOING'
baking decadent things and leaving them there knowing i can come back AND THEY'LL STILL BE THERE
Hmmm... road trip? ROAD TRIP!
Watching the A&E version of Pride & Prejudice while knitting, then starting Downton Abbey from Season 1 without a PEEP
Shower drinking. (Thank you Joy.)
Talking to Siri for way too long
Target's having a sale on cardigans!
Should I spend the last of my paycheck on Starbucks? YES.

The list goes on and on... Most of this list involves borderline gluttony and unkempt armpit hair in public. This is just a fun reminder that it's okay that I'm single when I feel like it's starting to be a stigma.

Thanks for listen to me rant for a bit. I needed a good rant haha

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

SLW: the future's present

This SLW I'm actually working - womp waaaa - so I'm trying to soak up my off time by reading every techie blog there is for a few. Thank God for the notes app on my phone; I can write whenever inspiration hits. Happy Wednesday!
As a single girl I try to stay relevant in the present. Try not to get too ahead of myself in terms of future plans that may or may not involve significant others and children. 

I usually end up talking about how much I enjoyed that wedding I just attended but I would NOT want a bouquet toss like that and I think my dress should DEFINITELY be A-line but really you know buffet tables are THE WAY to go because the simpler the choices the better and..... I've done it again. I've gone off the deep end into what I'd like to call "single lady twilight zone" aka planning your entire future without a man. So I immediately cover myself with "...YA KNOW if I were GETTING married cuz honestly if I don't it's okay. I'm just... saying. *shrugs*"

And then I see a cute baby and start to think "oh I really love the name Ethan... But honestly I'd really like a girl and I would definitely name her Charlotte... Because really CLASSIC names are the ones that get my children job interviews and Cornell is a very. good. university....." and I'm off again! In my head i have a family of 6 and pets. I know where we live and I know how I dress my children but again I cover it with "...YA KNOW whenever I have children and honestly it's okay if I don't cuz it's really... Ya know what it's just really God's TIMING for my life and he is writing my ROMANCE NOVEL and I hope it has a sex life like 50 Shades." (<---- blech.)

We can't help it. I feel like a woman's nature is to think ahead in her life. I give credit to my single life for keeping me in the present because it is so possible that I already know my children's names (I do.) and what I want my wedding colors to be (yep. got that too). I also think that single people delude themselves into saying "oh it's okay if all this doesn't happen..." but if we're being honest... I'll be really sad. I feel like motherhood is in my future. But I can't just straight up PREDICT my own future. Did I ever see myself going to OLIVET by CHOICE?! Hail no! It takes an insane amount of wholehearted trust in God that he's got you... So  when something happens beyond your imagining you are truly awed and thankful. I hold onto that. : )

Sunday, September 9, 2012

a fellow single lady

This is a great post on the Christian girl and the single life. I found myself saying "OH MY GOODNESS YOU GET IT" multiple times. 
Read it. Jus' do it.  

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

how to SLW

You don't have to be single to have a Single Lady Wednesday. It doesn't even have to be Wednesday to have one. For me it's become a verb. Oh hay gurl what are you up to? I'm just SLW-ing it up. No bigz.

I thought I would tell you how I start my Single Lady Wednesday's off right.

First? Sleep til forever. Just do it. Get a baby sitter, forget to set your alarm, draw the blinds and sleep. It's your day off! You don't answer to any one.

Next? Watch Ina Garten at 11:30. I have found it's good for the soul to watch her make things that look like they came straight from Heaven itself. You haven't even eaten breakfast yet. You're just chillin with a blanket with Ina Garten's many button up shirts probably made by a collaboration between Yves Saint Laurent and L.L. Bean.

OH. How could I forget...  You are pants-less. You don't wear pants! Don't you do it! Unless you live with a parent that is home you can certainly do without pants for a few hours. It's conducive to the environment - the MENTALITY - of SLW. Trust me. You're already in the mood.

don't worry about the dark chocolate almonds, which you should totally get. Let's be honest I waited too late to eat and now I'm starving so these are what I munch on while cooking haha

Next step... Breakfast. Yes I realize that it's now 12 noon but my first meal of the day... I always call it breakfast. I don't know what it is but lazing around and then getting in the kitchen makes me so happy. I don't care what I'm making, from cranberry lemon oatmeal with almonds and brown sugar to a french toast bagel with cream cheese and maple sausage, I really enjoy making breakfast for myself on a Wednesday. My mother, bless her, will make a large pot of coffee for us in the morning and leave the rest to cool because I like it iced. Which leads me to my next step...

Single Lady Coffee.

It is a mix of Starbucks coffee and the Pioneer Woman's Vietnamese coffee recipe. It tastes like the creamiest white chocolate mocha you've ever had. I use:

  • Starbucks Willow Blend - freshly ground that morning.... obviously by my mother *sigh* double blessings on her
  • Evaporated milk (the best kept secret in the world)
  • Sweetened condensed milk - 2 tablespoons
  • 8 ice cubes (every time! i don't know it's just muscle memory now)
  • a red striped straw - I'm not paying for an overpriced cup of Starbucks! I don't need an iconic green straw to make me feel like I'm having a cup of something significant. These well priced straws make me feel super fancy. Without pants. 
  • a giant. cup. coincidentally from Starbucks. I can't help that they make a good mug. They were totes on sale, girl. 

Then I usually I contemplate what to do with the rest of my day - if I'm to have an adventure it will be decided right after breakfast. In today's case I may or may not have gone BACK to bed after battling whether or not to drive to get sushi (this is the longest craving I've ever had - 3 months!). In my defense I work til midnight every Tuesday and last night was apparently a lot of moving and shaking cuz it was all I could do but crawl back to my blankets and catch more single lady z's. Beauty rest and all that.

Here's to many more pants-less days, day long adventures, and lots and LOTS... of coffee.

Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

SLW musings III

First of all thank you so much for the suggestions on future Single Lady Wednesday posts! I realize I could probably make an entire blog about my singleness but I hate pigeonholing myself when I write. I want to have it all in one place. I like that Single Lady Wednesday can ride along side personal situations and funny family stories. I like it a lot. Trust that I slyly took out a pad of paper and wrote all your suggestions down for later on. And by pad of paper I mean the Stickies application on my computer. Technology. *shrugs*
I feel like I'm JUST NOW coming out of a haze from last week's tragedy and I can think clearly (thank you for your condolences, they helped so much). Then my body decided to hit me with the ultimate single lady monthly friend... except it was on a 3 month hiatus previously. So I've been literally laid low with the fact that my lady parts are actually trying to kill me. I'm pretty sure it's some kind of conspiracy theory? I'm reading up on it... trying to put together a case so I can subpoena and sue my uterus.
I am coming out and saying it... I think Starbucks is my boyfriend. I think it was written in the stars to be honest. I work for a company that chooses it's locations based on proximity to Starbucks and my managers/co-workers/bosses/bosses bosses go there MULTIPLE TIMES A DAY. Granted they all get stuffy boss drinks like Americano's (which actually taste like cigarette butts mixed with coffee beans) or something called a Red Eye. ick. pass. I'll take the sweet coffee please? Venti? Extra whipped cream? Can I actually just get whipped cream in a cup with caramel drizzle on top? (my sister actually did this for her birthday drink - Starbucks didn't bat an eyelash.)

If you really don't believe me behold Exhibit A - a plastic homage to how much money I spend there. zomg.
Exhibit A
I definitely just placed an order for mustard yellow skinny jeans. Online shopping has become way too accessible and easy lately. Also Gap has started to SUPER appeal to my aesthetic. Clean and simple yet stylish. I also walk past it daily on my way to work. Curse you Gap! I fell in.
Sometimes on my day off I play Bejeweled Blitz all day and watch as much Ina Garten as possible. That day is today and I'm so okay with that.

Hopefully I should be hitting you up with a few new SLW things soon. Also... RENEGADE IS COMING and THAT is an adventure I'm very excited to share with you. 

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, August 24, 2012


I grew up 8 and 10 years apart from my older siblings. By the time I came into the world they were kinda growing out of the playmate stage. Subsequently I spent a lot of time around my mom until I was about 4 and we met the Lofton & Catchings family. They both had a 5 year old (Kelli and Kevin) and a 1 year old (Kaleb and Krystal) and I was in HEAVEN. Playmates! Our families kind of… amoeba morphed together and you couldn't tell where one family started and ended. Looking back I had classic "middle child" syndrome being that no one was really my age, but no matter, I was just happy to be somewhere people enjoyed my company for real. We ended up at the same grammar school and for the most part the same high school. Besides my actual family, they have been truer family to me than anyone. They know me and I know them... inside and out. I honestly don't remember a time when I didn't call the parents my Uncles and Aunties and the kids cousins or my brothers and sisters. 

The sudden loss of Kaleb (at 23 years old) this past Monday… shook me to my center. I didn't cry right away but I couldn't focus. It was like… my ears were ringing continually and my vision wouldn't correct. My brain has developed a way of coping with situations - basically it pushes it OUT of my brain so it doesn't exist and I don't have to deal with it. It PROBABLY isn't healthy? But honestly it helps me to keep moving. And that's all I think is KEEP. MOVING. But my brain can't move past it because it keeps reminding me of what happened while at the same time trying to push it out of my brain… and it knows I have to deal with it. 

I truly cannot understand it. Every time I think about it I shake my head no involuntarily because I can't... make any sense of it. I haven't really told anyone about because I can't make my mouth form the words. 

Kaleb is my family, he's my brother... the Catchings family is part of my heart and even though I'm dealing with it in my own way doesn't make me any less family or any less devastated. People mistake my quietness for passiveness at times.

My comfort has been that I get the privilege of seeing Kaleb again in Heaven cuz I know it's a real place. I feel like it's a phrase that gets passed off until a passing but I haven't been more sure about much in my life - I KNOW where he's at and that gives me hope to hold on to. 

Kaleb, I love you. I will see you again. 


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

SLW: ideas

Okay guys, I'm gonna be straight with you.

Being single is pretty repetitive.

I walk around without pants on, have tiny adventures and try to be awesome while open and vulnerable but... I'm not sure what to talk about anymore, which is why I need your help! What do you want to see out of SLW? More adventures? Food treatz? Intimate personal details about life in general? Advice column? D.I.Y. for 1?? (which I've totally just dubbed D.I.Y.4.1 in my brain...)

Help a sister OUT!

In the meantime I need to clean... there's a GIANT pile of clothes on top of my bed that I just feel like laying on top of and taking a nap... real life guys. real life.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Fall Preview

"I would buy you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils
if I knew your name and address.
On the other hand, this not knowing has its charms." -
You've Got Mail

The terrible and wonderful thing about Chicago is its weather. It can change in a literal minute. True Chicagoans know that layering is your best friend because you have no idea if it's going to rain or snow and then be blazing hot. I feel like the inconsistencies make us really prepared for "dealing with ambiguity".

Today we got a sneak peek of fall and it made me SO happy, especially in my un-airconditioned car. I rode with my windows down and sang at the top of my lungs... and paused to acknowledge the two cars on either side of me listening to two different, but equally good, Kanye albums. That was real.

I think it's ingrained by the American school system but every August/September I buy about 15 cardigans and ALL the pencils in preparation for... what? School? Not really. But it's like a fresh start for my brain! It's fall! There are leather BACKpacks to be bought! Ooo! Electric PENCIL sharpeners are on sale! What's that you say? MOAR SHARPIES?! I've had to really stop myself from going crazy because I inevitably end up with school supplies for an imaginary school year. To be honest I would totally be a career student if it didn't involve massive amounts of debt. I love campuses. By campuses I really mean the royal ALL here. It also really makes me want to watch You've Got Mail, which is my favorite movie of all time.

What has helped quell my bookish nature is Lost Crates. I found them through Joy (because of course I did) and they have a Petit Stationery Crate that has made me feel like I'm back in school again. They fill it with Blackwing pencils, pretty designed drawing books (not even available in the U.S.!) and Moleskine book lights. My literary heart actually pitter-pattered. Best of all it's delivered to your door with a vintage "AIR MAIL" stamp on it in about a day! I'm pretty much addicted. No joke.

Also I might have binged on brush tip markers because I love to write with them. But that's neither here nor there. You didn't see anything.....

Today continues our perfect weather streak and since I don't work til the afternoon I plan on getting a Caramel Apple Spice and curling up with my issue of Kinfolk.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Constructive Blogicism

I read a lot of blogs and it's become part of my daily routine to check on Google Reader. After a while you begin to bond with people you've met before - it's like they know you and you know them. You have things in common with people all over the world. You're so compatible! How are we not BEST. FRIENDS?!

Then comes that moment that happens to all of us. You become too comfortable. You begin notice details and annoyances that never stuck out to you before. Their life is too perfect. They write too inconsistently. They write too word heavy and never include pictures (me!). And then one day you unfollow the blog you were once so kindred to... how does that happen?

You start to feel snarky every time they post a picture of their perfect family YET AGAIN. You cringe when you see a horrifingly unoriginal "from where I stand" photo aka "look at my hammer toes in my dang flip flops." They recycle a post and you feel utterly betrayed. How DARE their entire life not be around coming up with original content? FOR ME. THEIR BEST FRIEND THAT THEY DON'T KNOW ABOUT. You think about posting anonymously through 10-minute email (look it up... it's a thing) to tell everything you've been holding inside but that poses a bigger question...

How do you give criticism to someone you don't know?

Is it your place to tell them you're annoyed with seeing the lower half of their body on Instragram day in and day out? Is it your place to tell them that maybe nine months is a little LONG to wait before having a single date alone with your husband after your baby is born?? Or that the bloggers sister has a stink face in ALL the photos you post of her???

No. It really isn't your place.

If you have nothing nice to say don't say it all but... what are bloggers without their readers? It's a crazy fine line... I know I wouldn't want someone to anonymously comment something snarky and hashtag it #justsayin but if something isn't working at all... I'd want to know at the same time! Would I be MORE or less upset with a simply put email? I'd probably still be pissed haha

The blog world is so INTERESTING. And equally as frustrating sometimes

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

SLW: Misery & Co.

Again this is a previous post that I felt weird about putting out here for an SLW. I decided to read it yesterday and it made me laugh - I hope you like it. Also a few friends are leaving this week for different locations so I've been focusing on that a bit. Sorry for the lack of an SLW last week! I'll make it up! For realsies!
First of all I'd just like to say that if I owned some kind of crazy print company I'd name it Misery & Co. and be awesome. We'd make the happiest things on earth.

What is it about a single woman feeling bad for herself that makes her feel like she's the ONLY ONE in the world? Like "I am alone! I am the ONLY. ONE. ALONE. Everyone... EVERYONE just got engaged! EVERYONE just had a baby! EVERYONE JUST POSTED ALL THESE EVENTS ON FACEBOOK! *mass hysteria ensues*"

My mother, Infinite Knower of All Things Pertaining to Dudes, always stops my panic with, "EVERYONE just got engaged?" and I wipe the snot off my nose and say, "No...." snarkily. It is true that a blogger I read is a former Juilliard ballerina (strike one) turned married housewife (strike two) who just gave birth to her second child (strike three and I'm dead!) and JUST TURNED 26 a few days ago. I mean you could knock me over with a feather and I'd be on the ground sobbing in a second.  But no... EVERYONE isn't married or engaged or having babies. It's just magnified by my state of aloneness and self pity.

Let's talk truths. One truth? I am completely blowing this out of proportion. I am never the only one alone. My friend texted me last week with an alone story and I responded "you're not alone! I'm still here! and stilllll single" and she kept right on talking unfazed, which leads me to my second truth: Sometimes you just gotta get it alllll out. When having a pity party there is nothing I like to hear more than myself WHINE. Just... just listen to me whine, please! Because NO one has it worse than I do right now. and that is NEVER true. Third truth - pity parties accomplish nothing. Absolutely nothing. I understand releasing emotion because it's not good to let it just stew there, but once it's gone, LET IT GO.

At the end of the day when you've whined and cried and felt horrible are you really any closer to having a man? Are you any further from it? Maybe... but it's like giving in to a 1 year old who is having a temper tantrum. What's the point? Leave that 1 year old mentality kicking and screaming on the ground and go on about your business. Eventually they'll stop crying because you're no longer giving it attention and be happy again.

There are days when I just can't take it. There are days when I catch The Notebook on the Oxygen channel and watch it THREE TIMES IN A ROW. Coldstone calls with Cake Batter ice cream and I answer with getting a Gotta Have It. But I need to get more used to telling myself no. The 1 year old in me has ruled for too long and I need to teach it some discipline. "Hey! *snaps* heyhey! shut it down! You're an adult this is NOT attractive!" and while I may snark around my apartment for a bit I WILL move past it.

For my other single ladies, you really aren't alone. I will gladly join you for some dinner/sushi/movie/shopping any day of the week but I don't want to best each other with how "alone" we are. There is no prize at the end of the hangout and that leads me to my last truth...

God's got it! He's got it. Like... IN THE BAG He's got it so really I have nothing to freak out about. I'm working on retraining myself to think differently cuz really... it's like no bigs to the dude that created the universe.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

SLW: On Being Fragile

I wrote this a long time ago and was hesitant to use it because... who enjoys talking about personal things. Anyways... here's to stretching myself a bit.
There is something to be said about womanhood. You are expected to be resilient and strong yet dainty and graceful. A lady in the streetz but a freak in da sheetz. I got called "an angry black woman" the other day for butting in on conversation. We fight for equality and expect the same rights and workload as a man (which I am all about) but there is something to be said about the fragility of being a woman.

The last (read: only) guy (read: douche) I dated, however EXTRA briefly, hated when I would get wound up about things, never hugged me when I cried and thought my obvious girl exaggerations were real. In reality I had changed myself to be someone I wasn't at all so it kinda wasn't all his fault - I wasn't Abby. But! it has taken me until right now (yes! right now!) to realize that being a little fragile is okay. We're all fragile in real life and buffer ourselves against... everything. Men and women included.

Having it all together all the time isn't... REAL. Usually the people that expect you to have it together are projecting their own state of being unkempt on you. I'm not saying that you need to be a blubbering mess EVERY DAY and chalk it up to "I-I-I *hiccup* I'm j-j-just fragile right n-n-noooooow" before bursting into more ugly cries. No... no one wants to see that. But as an adult... I am not in the career I'd like to be in. I don't have the life I want yet... and that's okay! Who says it's a requirement? The journey is the reward.

After my parents divorced I felt like I had to be strong all the time for my mom... well for my whole family really. It's only been recently where I've come to understand that I don't need to provide laughter to divert serious situations - and I am good at doing that.

I can be a little vulnerable. I can give up control... because I know to gain control I need to lose it. God takes over from there.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

SLW: sweet 16

Yesterday my only niece, Autumn, turned 16. It's crazy because her mom, myself and Autumn are all pretty much exactly 10 years apart. It's cray cray sauce. My mom... cried like a small child of course but we all felt the love.

Autumn came into the world gangly and awkward and wanting to eat. As a baby, whenever I would give her a kiss she would suck on my lips. I just considered it bonding time... She grew up around her mom, myself and my mom and quickly developed a sense of maturity beyond her years, which makes it hard to make friends who have the mental capacity of a rock. It's also known as high school girls.

Now I get to pass down the sage advice I wish I knew at 16... haha. not really. just some anecdotes for living life well from one single lady to another. I love you more than all of my Sharpies combined, niecesters!

Advice I wish I could tell my 16 year old self... and my 16 year old niece.

1. It really ISN'T that big of a deal at the end of the day. Just remember that. It's not that big of a deal. Apply to all areas of life.

2. That boy you like? Will either turn out to go nowhere in life, or be really successful later in life. So what I'm saying is WAIT to see if he's a complete dud before you go off the deep end for a dude who ends up working at movie theatre for the rest of his life (hey guys! real life story here.)

3. All the cool things you wanna do like learn to play guitar while sky diving off the coast of California? You should do that. For reals.

4. Do you have a dream college? The college that makes you feel all fuzzy and warm and happy? APPLY THERE. Don't think that it's out of your reach - it may be your perfect place! APPLY. APPLYYYYHYYYY

5. Trust in God. Forever and ever and ever. Coming of age means coming into independence you didn't know you had. Also, you are not meant to carry every burden alone. Just trust in God. Remind yourself of this daily.

6. Listen to your mother. It has to be said. Just cuz you're 16 doesn't discount the wisdom of a mom. For what it's worth listen to your brother too. He'll end up being your best friend. Siblings just want to be heard... however loud and obnoxious...

7. And now for the cliche clinchers that are totally real... REACH FOR THE SKY! NEVER STOP DREAMING! NEVER BE AFRAID TO CRY! CARTWHEELS IN THE GRASS! and all that... they're true though. they're good principles to live by. ESPECIALLY cartwheels in the grass. It'll get you through college.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

summer sickness

What is it about summer that makes the worst colds descend on you? I'm out sick today with swollen glands and a voice that apparently sounds like I'm on helium according to my co-workers. It is definitely NOT a sexy cold voice. But it makes no sense at least to me... If I'm gonna HAVE a cold I kind of want it to BE cold outside. It's only a balmy 105 here in Flossmoor and that is STUPID.

So I might have done a couple things. The first thing was... put on a flowy maxi skirt and a striped t-shirt to go to the store... and no underwear. Has anyone else done this when running to the store? I mean I was gonna be out for approximately 15 minutes and that skirt might be the one thing I'm going to live in ALL SUMMER soooo I feel no shame. The second thing was buy Snickers ice cream bars unabashedly. I never buy them! Ever! So what better time to get them when sick?! And they were on sale! Imagine if I were sick... and had to buy them... and they WEREN'T on sale!

My logic is clearly sound here. Not clouded at all by swollen glands & swollen nasal passages... and Sudafed Severe Cold & Sinus which seems to be... a very potent formula as I am now drowsy.

Stay cool today! It is seriously so hot it's beyond sense. What a good excuse to buy Snickers ice cream bars!!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


No SLW today... just lots of bar-b-que and sweet tea.

Happy 4th! 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

SLW: Guest Post + Book Review

All I seem to write nowadays is SLW posts. What up with that?! This summer has proved to be heavy in terms of work, which is SLIGHTLY depressing but real life all the same. SLW's keep me going though! 

Today we've got a special guest post paired with a book review from my AMAZING friend Maggie. A bit of background on Miss Ness, I met her in college my freshman year. She's an awesome photographer and we bonded over quippy quotes and oddly enough NOT talking. We are pretty much the same person - she is the caucasian version of me and I am the black version of her. I can tell her pretty much anything because she's already thinking it. It'sssssprettygreat. I love her real style. She is reviewing Rachel Dratch's book "Girl Walks Into a Bar..." which is apparently really awesome and funny. Also it's purported to be very similar to the rest of my Single Lady Wednesday posts. Obviously I ordered it from the library straight away haha. Enjoy! 

I’m going to start off by saying that I have no idea how to review a book without just saying “ERMAGERSH THIS BERK IS SOOOOOO GEEEEEERD.” But I will try, so bear with me.

Growing up watching SNL basically formed my sense of humor, and the women of SNL have pretty much all become role models for my life. They taught me how to put myself fully into everything I do, kick ass while doing it, and not give a shit what other people think.

There’s definitely been a trend of lady comedians writing books lately and I am loving every single one. I remember seeing Rachel Dratch pop up in skits as little boys and Calista Flockhart, and eventually her titular character of Debbie Downer. I always admired her for being a little different, but after a brief stint on 30 Rock she pretty much disappeared. This is where her memoir comes into my life.

She takes the familiar path of lady-comedian-book-writing-format and goes over her years at Dartmouth, at Second City in Chicago, then finally her tenure at SNL (the good stuff!). But that’s not really what this book is about. It’s about being single and alone, and unsure of where your life is headed (sound familiar?).

Rachel entertainingly recounts her experiences with The Three Addicts, a few hilariously disastrous post-SNL jobs, strange spiritual interventions, and the 3 non-showbiz dates she had before meeting the father of her son. It’s funny, witty, and definitely made me tear up more than once.

But what I admire the most about Rachel’s journey through singleness and her “midlife miracle,” (and what I fully intend to incorporate more into my own life) is her employment of the improv rule: “Yes And.” When you stop being scared and start saying “Yes And,” your life can go basically anywhere. It’s a lesson I definitely need to learn and I’m so glad I took a few hours out of my life to read how it affected someone else’s way of thinking and the journey of their life.


But seriously, I highly recommend it and it’s such a quick and easy read that you’ll knock it out in a couple days and also learn something about how funny life can be at the same time.
I think if you like Tina's book and Mindy's book this falls right in line with them. Honestly I can't get enough of my favorite women of television's books. I'm holding out for a book from Amy Poehler and my life will pretty much complete itself. Their thought process is hilarious but their wisdom is real. 

I'm off to Joanne Fabrics to get embroidery floss for friendship bracelets! I can't get enough of them lately. For a person who hates things to adorn her wrists this might be a terrible endeavor but I love that they're coming back in style. I remember my sister's Caboodle (OH MAN.) being filled with all types of embroidery floss. I was so jealous of her bounty. So jealous. 

Happy (really warm) Wednesday! 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

SLW: "It happens when you least expect it!" and other sayings that make you want to punch your friends in the face.

I think we've all gotten advice from friends and family perking us up about our perpetual state of singleness:

"...Plenty of fish...!" (dot com)
"It happens when you aren't looking!"
"When you LEAST expect it then you'll meet the perfect man!"

Okay, I don't want it to seem like I am ungrateful for the genuinely heartfelt advice given by good friends when when is this advice ever gonna EVOLVE!? I find my self in the middle of my day asking "Am I least expecting it NOW??" and "I wasn't looking so does that mean NOW?!" like gauging myself on how LITTLE I expected my future husband to walk through the door made for a successful day! Seriously...

Being single is fine and dandy when trying to man it alone but look or feel the least bit lonely and the age old adages are drug from the closet like they're clinically proven to work. Guess what 4 out of 5 doctors say??? I DON'T CARE. Sometimes you're just over THINKING about being single without your grandma asking you when you're gonna give her more grandkids. It's tiring and frustrating.

I wonder if we just told the truth to our single girlfriends when we walk up to you all dewey eyed saying "I'm lonely." I wonder what would happen. Being brutally honest usually isn't in people's nature, even if brutal honesty is needed, that phrase becomes a cushion I think. Like you have a friend that ends up with the wrong guy every time and desperately NEEDS to stop looking, in our nervousness we shout out "LEAST EXPECT IT!" I'm really trying to give you married friends the benefit of the doubt here, your intentions are good I just know it. : )

The fact of the matter is...
"It's just not time yet and when it is you'll meet. You and I have NO idea when that time is so don't waste yours trying to figure out when it IS time. Let it go and live your life in the meantime. If you ever get lonely do not drown yourself in food. That is a real bit of advice for you. Take up crafting. It's pretty great. Let's hug it out."

That's the friend way of saying "GET OVER IT!!! You're awesome so move on." Ya know? Tell this to me next week when I'm upset because everyone on Facebook just got married but you understand what I'm saying. And then we'll bake cupcakes together cuz you yelled at me. I'm sensitive!

Is this a doable thing? Things DO happen when you're not thinking about them so, yes, thank you, friends for the advice, but let's bring this into the 21st century hmm?? Love you guys on the real though.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

adulthood can suck it.

I think we need to have a class called "How to be a successful adult" that consists of mostly margaritas, crying and hugging it out.

True adulthood is tiring! I just paid off a credit card bill *yay!* and now have ANOTHER giant bill added onto that. It never stops does it? You save and scrounge and save and scrounge and pay and save and scrounge and then... what?

I feel like I will never get to a place in my life where things are just... GOOD in terms of money. There will always be another bill, months will always roll into next months, I will never not want that coat at the Gap! I just sit in the middle of the room and cry but that accomplishes nothing. So we get up... and go to work... and come home... and get up and do the same thing over again.

Who decided this was a good idea?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

single lady status

Ya know how when you shave you miss exactly ONE leg hair...

and you don't notice it until you actually feel it blowing in the breeze?

Me either. That's never happened. 

SLW: What I've learned about guys (and also myself)

I don't really have that much experience WITH guys seeing as how I only dated one... and that was disastrous? but I am practical and I watch... everything. I've seen 20 year relationships succeed and I've also seen them end. I just stay quiet... and watch... like a creeper but let's not focus on that.

In my 26 years of DOMINATING single ladyness I've learned a few things about guys. (is that an oxymoron to know things about guys while being single?? haha uhhh...) You're all about learning from my infinite well of knowledge amiright?!

- guys like things simple. Food? Steak. Dessert? Chocolate chip cookies. Emotions? happy! sad! choose one. don't be both. It's much easier said than done because as a woman I aim to please. I may want to SLAVE over a hot stove all day making duck a l'orange deplooploo de beauvoir but really all that man wants is a good seasoned non rubbery STEAK. Same with determining your relationship. It should NOT take forever. Are we dating? Good. If we're dating we shouldn't have to TALK about seeing other people because WE'RE DATING EACH OTHER.  Any guy who makes things complicated probably isn't being straight with you. And you're happiest when things aren't complicated right?

- a guy that says he wants to be friends with you wants two things: he wants to date you AND/OR he wants to have sex with you. If you are not interested in either (would you like your muffin buttered?) then keep it ULTRA casual. They're really just hoping you'll see the light and date them? Or be lonely enough for a Thursday night booty call. Keepin' it real guys I'm keepin' it real.

- guys are pretty straightforward in real life - I know! I know. Dudes are stupid and they make no sense but  I'm gonna be honest with your faces. If they like you? They will make it KNOWN. "He had finals! His grandmothers best friends interior designers aunt? Just fractured her toe." Yeahh no. If this dude likes you he will find a WAY to get some face time... with your face. Don't sweat other dudes who make it like training for a marathon to get in touch with them. You ignoring them may make them see the light.

 - confidence. Dudes. freakin. LOVE. CONFIDENCE. You could be 450 lbs and WORKIN the HECK out that dress and guys will be attracted to what you're exuding. You could be size 00 and hideously repellent to men because you don't even get it! You can't see. Wonder why all the girls you NEVER thought would have a boyfriend TOTALLY DO? They saw that confidence, that inner SOMETHING in them and it outshone any other thing. It's a true light.

- guys honestly like standards that are KEPT. If you "never do this on a first date" so many times... then you ALWAYS do this on a first date and you might need to get check out for a disease called "being a skank." If you are all about the standards then don't waver. Never waver. If you say you're gonna do something, do it. If you're not, why'd you say it?

Navigating relationships with dudes is weird. You want to figure them out while keeping the mystery and that makes no sense to me. Personally, guys take up too much of my brain power... and yet I would still like to have a boyfriend, marry and have children. I mean COME ON. I'd much rather navigate being single right now and when it's time to jump into a relationship I'll remember what I've learned. (mostly just bake chocolate chip cookies and you're golden.)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


I worked til 2:30 this morning.

I didn't fall asleep until about 4AM... birds were chirping.

I'm going BACK to work at 7 this evening.

Needless to say I'm kind of hungover on work...

Today I don't have any adventures for you or anecdotes to share just... watching reruns of Adventure Time onDemand in a long tank top and no pants on with a bag of leftover Doritos from last nights lonnnnng work shift. My hair looks good though, so there's that.

I do have some things you CAN do though:

- read old Single Lady Wednesdays - they'll make you laugh in your throat. Sometimes I dream that they'll be made into a book like Haiku for the Single Girl. Wouldn't that be cool??
- head on over to a few of my friends blogs -  Kate's daughter just turned one! Katherine shares some wisdom, and I'm loving Sharon's adventures in New York lately
- if you're gonna be lazy... or not be lazy then listen to the Joy the Baker podcast. This last podcast was perfection. Truly.
- and if you REALLY want to be lazy then obviously... Pinterest. Because this watch. That skirt. These popsicles... equals AMAZINGNESS and all because Pinterest EXISTS.
- have you heard of the L.A.T.E. ride in Chicago?! HOW AWESOME DOES THAT SOUND?!!?

I really... REALLY need to get back to my chair in the living room. I'm planning on reading the rest of my magazines today... and finding the leftover Oreos from last night before heading back to work. Ah... this SLW is the stuff dreams are made of!

Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

SLW: more truths corrected

I just need to address a couple things floating around and correct the heck out of them. Because this here is real.

Single ladies are extroverted and proactive about their singleness:

That may be true... but I'm hella introverted. A high school friend walked into my job the other day and it was like doing some kind of ninja exercise of avoidance. Ducking... bobbing... weaving under and over tables just to NOT talk to someone. I may have to work on that. a bit. But really I like journals and the library. I'm pretty nerdy and I think silence is AMAZING. Lots of people are weirded out by that... But you're not right?

But I'm proactive about being single! Totally... proactive about going to Dairy Queen alone. Proactive to hog ALL of my bed and ALL of the pillows. Proactive to get a large popcorn at the movies and not share with a soul. Chyeah. I've got proactive in the bag.

Single ladies are up on the latest trends:

That is probably true haha. I'm gonna tell you something. I'm not sure what to DO with the whole neon trend... So apparently you pair it with neutrals? I almost picked up a neon hair flower today and had... no idea what to pair it with... other? neons? Please. Please help is what I'm asking. Also let's touch on blazers for a bit. Blazers + Abby = no. I think I need a tailored blazer legit. Either the middle fits but the arms are too big or the arms fit and the boob area needs some help. All in all a right out of the store blazer doesn't look great. Basically I wear what is a) comfortable b) fits and fits WELL and c) makes me look smokin' hot. The end.


On a different note I actually had a FRICKINAWESOME SLW today. I went downtown with my good friend Anisha and we bought and ate...  all the things. All. All the things.

Apologies for this SLW being so random. I actually wrote out an entire post and wasn't feelin' it... and revised this one about 6 times and I still don't like it! You ever have days like that where writing just isn't flowing? It happens. I need to scrounge up some more ideas. If you have them? Please let me know! I'm just one single lady in a sea of others.

Happy Wednesday... the little bit left : )

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

SLW: musings (on exercise)

I feel like there is an unspoken pact by single women everywhere that you have to exercise A LOT. You have to be READY at any time to pounce on a man. It's like... the endorphins are... comparable to sex or something? Well if I was looking for comparable endorphins I would just get all the chocolate in the world. AMIRIGHT?!


For an update to last weeks "BREAKING NEWS" I did NOT join a gym. Hah. I sound and feel... awesome. But I have a reason! It was beautiful last week and I wanted to go for a walk when I realized I don't want to walk by myself all the time. My friend Anisha, who has just come back into town after 8 years of college and med school, asked if I wanted to start walking with her! An answered prayer! There's a 3.6 mile path down the street from me and today I toootally walked the whole thing.

Now I'm not sure what kind of thoughts people have while exercising but mine are pretty hostile...

*starts walking* woo! I'm walkin! Gettin healthy! Woo... sun's hot... woo. balls. it's hot as balls. can we turn around *turns around to see car 3ft away* I should... walk a little bit more.
NO ONE FEELS MY PAIN! *a woman, bigger than I am, passes me... RUNNING* NO ONE AT AAAALL.
*hot guy running passes her with his shirt off* OKAYOKAY STOP BRAGGING ABOUT IT.
*somehow mistaking the mile markers* Omg we've walked 15 miles! FIFTEEN! THIS PATH IS FIFTEEN MILES?! I'm so awesome for walking 15 miles!! *gets to the end* omg we only walked THREE POINT SIX MILES?!?!?! *faints*

As you can see... this is going to be one of those kicking and screaming journeys. Anisha LOVES exercise and I think that wishing yourself thin is the next big diet craze. This summer should be SUPER interesting.

It's a start... : )

*for more Single Lady Wednesday posts go here!

**if you'd like to be featured on SLW feel free to email me with submissions at:

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

SLW: breaking news

I think I'm ready to join a gym...

yeah... you just let that sink in, little birdies...  

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

creative types

What do you design when you're designing for no one? I need to add more to my portfolio and there are only so many things I can think of that are fake. I need some help!

Any ideas?

A girl I used to work with always falls back to her favorites when she's designing. Can't think of anything? Clearly she's going to design something Bulls themed. I think it's a great idea. It plays to your strengths and your favorite things. I don't think future employers tire of seeing good designs of the same thing. That's why they call it a series.

 Guess I'll start designing all my favorite Chicago things soon. : )

Monday, May 14, 2012

26 pt. 2

As you get older expectations of birthday's change. As a little kid, birthday's were so SPECIAL. It was my day! The day I was born and you were NOT born on this day! I wanted balloons and a party and candles and the whole nine yards.

Nowadays I keep my birthday like a secret. No one knows why I'm smiling to myself or wearing red lipstick, but I do. I just want to lean over to the stranger next to me and say, "It's my birthday!" just to see their reaction. I also want do a little something for me every year, and that's exactly what I did.

I got my free Mocha Cookie Crumble from Starbucks and hopped on the train downtown to do a little blazer hunting. I started out at Zara (which I'd never been in before and really liked) and found some... that didn't fit me and headed to Anthropologie. I have a few issues with Anthro... mostly the price and the fact that I will never be small enough to fit in their clothing, but I went in anyway. I ended up finding a design journal and I really like it! I've been looking for a journal just to have with me so I can write or draw... WHATEVER when ideas strike. For me I really need to CONNECT with a journal. I hate Moleskine because everyone loves them... AND they don't lay flat. Hooray for Hemingway but Mallett does not approve. All other journals seem to be trying too hard. Does that make sense? This one is leather bound with an envelope closure and... it just clicked for me. I'm very happy.
Anthropologie journal 
The salesgirl wrapped it for me and asked if I wanted a gift receipt and I told her, "No... I think she'll like it : )" I'm a strange one...

In my searchings, I ended up at Forever 21, which is against all my rules. I rant on my soapbox about how tourists come from all over the world to the best city in the world... to shop at a place that is in every mall in America. But! They also have a great plus sized section and I ended up finding 2 of the CUTEST dresses I've ever laid eyes on. I want to make up parties just so I can wear these dresses for the rest of my life. Alas... no blazer.

I met up with my mom for sushi and pad thai at Bistro Pacific, who has the best sushi hands down. Sorry y'all. Gauntlet thrown. Then to Gap for one last blazer conquest... to no avail. I'm starting to think they don't make blazers for girls like me... or at least blazers that aren't found at Sears and... horribly ugly. My mom and I sang Happy Birthday at home over brownie a la mode with a tea light in it... cuz we ran out of candles... and I opened up my new letterpress kit (woo!). All in all it was a very good day : )
I'm excited to head into the last half of my 20's but not without a moment of panic. I FLIPPED out at midnight last night when I realized there is no backing out of the 25-34 age group. There is no sitting on the edge of youth. There is NO excuse for throwing a tantrum in public. I have to embrace womanhood and responsibility at the same time?! Omg WHAT did you just say about my biological clock?!? And then my brain calmed down. I'm no longer 25 and I get to be a grown woman! My loans are still crippling and I may never move out but I'm grown! Oy. My life. Declaring adult hood is tiring. I'm gonna sit down.

I want to keep a "no excuses" attitude about things this year. There really is no excuse for me not handling my relationship with God better. It's all on me. There's no excuse for being AFRAID of a bike. I ride the bike... the bike doesn't sit on my back and ask me to pedal. Why didn't you get out of bed and do more today? No excuses, get to movin! I'm buyin' a new computer this year. And I'm going on a road trip this year! I plan on being in Palm Springs with Joy and Tracy at Homefries U in September and I'm going to STOP. FINALLY. STOP. obsessing about having a damn (sorry) boyfriend! I'm so DONE with thinking about it constantly! Crying over married couples that are happy! Watching sappy movies in tears - WHO AM I!? I don't have Single Lady Wednesday's to wallow in self pity, it's to empower and inspire.

Oh. Heck. Yes. this year WILL be great.

p.s. I've decided all the things in my future apartment will be furnished from Anthropologie - so just so you know.

26 pt. 1

Trust that there are thoughts I want to share surrounding this number but for now... I'm out drinking the largest free Mocha Cookie Crumble I can find and shopping for a blazer

I love birthdays : )

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


I'm gonna speak on a subject that I never understood. My African-American Facebook friends and the fact that they LOVE their birthday. Way. too much.

If their birthday was Christmas... the day AFTER Christmas their Facebook status would be "364 DAYS TIL MY BIRTHDAY Y'AAAAALL! WE GON' DO IT UP BIG NEXT YEAR!" I've seen birthday celebrations last three days, I've seen them at EVERY major hotel, I've seen prom dresses on grown women, SHORT dresses on old women and themes.

To be honest... I get it. You're alive another year! Jesus be praised, you're aLIVE! So you should celebrate that! but counting down months in advance... planning elaborate parties that mostly just involve 1. the club (doesn't matter which club... it's the universal CLUB), 2. all your girlfriends past and present so they can see how good you look and 3. way too many sequins paired with all the eye make-up in the world is NOT the way to go.

On the opposite end of the spectrum... treating your birthday as just another day is WRONG. You're alive dangit! Look happy about that! Get a cupcake!

Personally on my birthday, I take off work and sleep in. I wake up and go to Starbucks to redeem my birthday drink and usually head downtown. Pizza might be involved. Sushi might be involved. I may shop a little for that business lady blazer I've been looking so long for. Buy that book that I've been wanting. But otherwise? I just want to enjoy the fact that I'm alive not CRASH into it head first. I want ice cream... and 14 extra hugs. and a pair of TOMS. and a walk by the lake. These are do-able things!

The club will ALWAYS be there... full of short dresses, group photos and all the "MY SOOONG!"'s you can handle. So leave it there. Find the friends and family that will truly celebrate you with a homemade cake and out of tune voices singing "Happy Birthday".

this post brought to you by the fact that my birthday is in a few days and I don't know what to do for it. and my Facebook friends' statuses. 

SLW: Ladies Lunch

When I was little the only thing I wanted was a burger and fries. Literally, everywhere I went. Breakfast? burger and fries. Fancy restaurant? You serve burgers right? It didn't matter. Well my mom being the brilliant woman she is invented something to shake me out of 'burger and fry' mode. She called it Ladies Lunch.

Every couple weeks she would take me and my sister to Marshall Field's. In the basement they used to have this awesome cafeteria filled with every kind of salad you could think of... and AMAZING. truly amazing desserts. (to this day I can't find a German Chocolate Cake to beat Marshall Field's - rest in peace) So I bound down there looking for, what else, burgers and fries, and my mom turns to me and says,"This is Ladies Lunch. You can only get what's here because that's what ladies eat. We can get burgers and fries somewhere else but here? We eat what ladies eat." *insert wide eyed little kid nod here*

For my little kid brain it made a whole lot of sense and I never complained. I ate chicken salad and pita sandwiches and german chocolate cake for dessert while sipping iced tea. Every time I went to Marshall Field's afterwards I would YELL for Ladies Lunch...  not knowing it was really NORMAL lunch? Without the presence of burgers and fries. My mom just wanted to train me to eat regular food. It worked.

I always end up thinking about Ladies Lunch when I pass a giant department store or am out eating with my mom and my sister and feel realllly civilized. I can't wait to share Ladies Lunch with my own daughters someday, but at the same time I love the single lady lunch. Meeting up with a friend (like I did with Keila this morning) and just eating and chatting... and then going on about your day.

Try a Ladies Lunch some time... make a point to go get sushi or something out of the ordinary - if your ordinary is Panera... maybe go get a burger and fries haha and catch up with a friend... or a good book.

Happy Wednesday!

p.s. - i bought the cutest pea swing coat from Gap for CHEAP cuz it was the end of the season? and was super sad I couldn't wear it til October but lo and behold it's COOL today!!! and I couldn't be happier cuz me and that coat had a DATE. : ) just wanted to throw that tid bit in there.

p.p.s - i look smokin' hot today.

Monday, May 7, 2012

typographic nerd alert.

I just spent the last half hour playing this.
and need someone else to go play it so I don't feel like a TOTAL nerd. 

too late. I already am.

click the picture to play... via how about orange

Friday, May 4, 2012

Gail Speaks: on grocery shopping

I've got a treat for you today. My mother, Gail Mallett (Ms. Mallett to everyone else) is lending her savvy wisdom to my blog. This is actually a response blog to Kate, of Diapers + Skinny Jeans, question on how to be better at grocery shopping. We typically shop at Walt's (local grocery store), Aldi, Target and Trader Joe's

To new moms or family's visiting my blog today, welcome! If you're questioning my mom's credibility know that she shopped as a single, working mom with small children, as a night shift nurse and wife with three kids and... as a single mom all over again. The woman is legit.
A: What sort of food is essential to a house?

GM: Households should have items from which they can make things instead of pre-packaged items. Things like flour, sugar, baking soda & powder, rice, oatmeal - basically things you can get multiple uses out of - cornmeal, spices, chili beans, black beans, canned fruit and vegetables (in water)... PASTA! Always have pasta. 

It's really not as expensive to buy all these items because you can get so many meals out of one buy. Having pasta and rice is really essential... You're not trying to carb load your children but a cup of brown rice or quinoa paired with a vegetable and chicken... That's a tasty meal!

A: If a family is starting from scratch and wanting to pretty much build a good household of food... would you break it down into multiple lists? Like: staples, produce, meat?

GM: Well, produce is something you will have to get ANYWAY. You will just know that you need bread, milk, eggs and fruit every week. You know you have to make a list for that weekly. You'll need a list but not necessarily broken down. I do, however, break down food by what store I'm getting it from. If I know Target has the best sales on bread or I really like Trader Joe's peanut butter then I split the lists - but on the same index card. (we are lovers of index cards in this house - and the Notes app on iPhone)

A: Well we get a crate of eggs from GFS so it's not like we have to get eggs every week.

GM: True, but for people who want "fresh eggs" might have to buy them every week. I'm not sure how cost effective it is because the 30 eggs we get from GFS are less expensive than a dozen of eggs a week. 

A: When do you buy frozen?

GM: I think meat you can buy... well go shopping once a month or once every two weeks. Meat can be a pricey purchase so that's not something you necessarily WANT to do every week. Look for a good sale and you can buy the packs of ground beef, ground turkey, ground chicken and freeze them. Or you could divide up fresh meat in Ziploc bags and freeze them. 

A: Is it the same for organic meat/produce?

GM: Yes, but you have to understand organic foods are more expensive, and, clearly, more perishable because they aren't treated. But if you and your family have decided to go that way and you're okay with buying more frequently you wouldn't have to buy meat in bulk. Same goes for produce.

A: So where does a family SAVE money?

GM: You end up saving money when you MAKE your family food. You gotta... get with the mentality that if you want cookies, you make them. Biscuits? You make them. You want pancakes, you MAKE them. I never understood getting pancake mix when you have flour, sugar and baking powder IN your house. That's money you don't have to spend! And instant oatmeal is a great idea but the yield you get from those little packets is far less than buying a canister of old fashioned oats and adding whatever you want to it. You end up using the oatmeal for cookies and bread and hot cereal. It's about longevity. 

A: What about families with small children?

GM: I think it's even MORE important to have those staples like oatmeal and dried fruit - cranberries, apricots and raisins. Buy oranges instead of orange juice - you get the juice AND the fiber - orange juice is expensive. Apple sauce is good and not very expensive. Ice cream is a splurge... so you can't buy 6 gallons of it. 

A: So what does a grocery shopping trip look like?

GM: Lists are essential. We only buy A LOT about once a month and the week to week things should be, again, produce, milk and bread. Having a list keeps you focused. Even if you needed 3 or 4 things and you budget it out to about 30 dollars, without a list you go in and end up buying things you don't need, you forget things, and you ended up spending 75 dollars. Womp. (that was added by me) If you go every week, you can't spend 75 dollars because you are buying a lot once a month.

A: Is a shopping schedule good?

GM: I think so. Pick one day and make a list ahead of time... just don't go on Saturday afternoons. In my opinion, EVERYONE is already out and your kids are pulling at you every which way to buy EVERYTHING and then they're crying. No fun for them or you. 

A: Anything else? What about working moms?

GM: I think making things from scratch are good. I'm not saying you need to bake a loaf of bread every day to be considered a good mom but take things like granola... You bought oatmeal. You don't need to buy granola because you can make it! Buyings things you can cook with is great. Make multiple meals on one day and freeze them. When you come home it's not such a CHORE to "make dinner." All you're doing is taking out whatever was pre-made by you and adding maybe rice and a vegetable - or a simple salad. I wouldn't buy hot dogs or lunch meat because it's so loaded with sodium and it's expensive. Make soup for lunch or... if you make enough chicken breast take chicken, apple and grapes for lunch for you. 

A: So the more you get on a buying routine for your house, the easier it becomes to replenish a few things and not ALL the things

GM: Yes!

Also if you don't know how to shop... it usually means you're eating out, which in turn makes your kids picky eaters. How do you expect your kids to all of a sudden like home cooked meals if you eat out 5 of 7 nights a week? Kids will eat when they're hungry, they won't starve. Show me a kid that will turn away an apple and peanut butter... it's protein, it's fiber and it's good for them. Really a kid just sees that throwing a fit will get them chicken nuggets and it's working... someone is being trained here and it's not the kid. I'm saying this because I've been there... Being a mom is tough.
Did my mom just drop some knowledge? I think so. Sorry if that last part is kind of controversial but it's the truth. I love Tracy Shutterbean's approach to food with her son Cooper. You gotta be innovative sometimes to get them to eat good things. PINTEREST gave her the idea for frozen yogurt dots and they're all the rage now!

Good luck on your shopping endeavors! It can be tough to bat down a routine but it CAN be done and you really save money in the long run. Have fun with it!...and May the 4th be with you. : )


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