Incredibly inspiring words to live by

These things do we earnestly desire: A clear vision of life, that with gracious and kindly hearts we may share both joy and sorrow and bring into living reality the Sisterhood of women. An appreciation of real merit and worth, steadfastness of soul, that without bitterness or defeat we may encounter misfortune and with humility meet success. These things, O Lord, help us to instill within our hearts that we may grow in courage and graciousness and peace.

I finished my college degree just six months ago. It completely baffles me how many things have changed in such a short amount of time. Friends who I loved so dearly have become strangers as work, money and adult responsibility takes the front burner.

Since beginning college, I have grown in so many ways and experienced so many different things. I’ve personally dealt with circumstances greater and tougher than many of my friends and people my age. I admit, still, I have a long way to go in terms of growing up.

I look back to my college days, and the late nights, lack of sleep and anxiety seem like nothing. The fights and drama have been forgotten, and the drunken nights, partying, formals, fundraisers and road trips have all wound themselves together into one blurry far away memory.

However, these words remain with me. I often say joining a sorority was both one of the best and worst decisions I’ve made in my 23 years of life. However, these words, the very words that make up the Symphony of Alpha Xi Delta, have stuck out to me, their meaning becoming more clear as I travel through life.

As I sit here tonight, in fear, sadness and anger, I wonder where the next chapter of life will take me. Which dream will become my next reality? I’m at a crossroads now, faced with several decisions… Do I look for full-time employment? Do I go back to college? Do I study nursing or go for my MBA? Should I keep trying to be patient till I find work in an ad agency? Will I even be happy with any of these decisions I make?

It’s tough to determine your own fate when you don’t even know where your heart lies anymore.

Woo Girls and Other Things that Make Me Feel Old

I celebrated my 23rd just two months ago. Not so bad, right? Wrong. For my birthday this year, I wanted nothing more than to enjoy a day off from work sleeping in, then to go out to eat with my boyfriend at a fancy restaurant. He took me to dinner at Mario’s, where I had the most delicious tasting ravioli of my life. He even bought me cheesecake for desert. We went home to share our cheesecake, and a bottle of wine, where we found ourselves on the couch watching a Sex and the City marathon. 10 p.m. rolled around and I was already falling asleep, nowhere near in the mood to hit the bars and clubs to celebrate my day as I’d done for the past two birthdays. 

Though I got some strange looks and a few rude comments from my friends, I enjoyed this birthday the more than previous years. I ate incredible food, spent time with those closest to me, and the best part was, I woke up the next morning hang over free, and able to remember everything that happened the day before. 

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My birthday isn’t the only occasion from this year that’s made me realize that I’m getting f-ing old. Last night Andrew and I went to the bars to visit with one of his college roommates who is in town for the next two weeks. Since we live closest to the local bar scene, we were the first in our group to arrive. 

As soon as we entered, we were hit in the face by loud music and a sea of people wearing orange “Drinkfest 2013” t-shirts. It was 8:00. We both looked at each other and complained that it was too early for there to be this many people at a bar that early in the evening, and for it to be so loud in the bar. 

Once the crowds, loud music, and drunk people making a horrible attempt at dancing with one another became too much for us, we went across the street to a new, much quieter bar. First, we complained that the drink specials were $1.50 more than the previous bar. 

Next thing I know, a bachelorette party runs in, asking several of our friends to sign the Bride-to-be’s inflatable penis. We cracked a few jokes about that and then went back to talking. “What’s my age again?” comes on over the speakers, followed by loud cheers and screams from the Bride and her friends. Enter the “woo girls“. 

Andrew and I glanced at each other, immediately annoyed at how we both managed to make the How I Met Your Mother connection in less than 30 seconds. 

Some of the other things from last night that made me realize we’re getting f-ing old:

  • I asked a friend’s wife to show us pictures of their baby
  • I asked if the same friends would be bringing their baby to a party we’ll be at next weekend so that we could finally meet her. 
  • Andrew didn’t even blink when several guys hit on me at the bar. 
  • Underaged kids, I mean seriously underaged somehow made it into the bar with their fake ID’s and took over our beer pong game. (Was it really 5 years ago that I had a fake ID and giggled with my friends over how we made it past the bouncers?)
  • Laughing with another friend over the drink choices of a 17-year-old. You’re a guy, and you’re seriously walking around having people try your really “yummy, green fruity drink?”
  • Talking babies, weddings and houses with friends
  • Encouraging a sorority sister to go out and have fun, because I was actually out doing the same thing for once
  • Leaving the bar by midnight to go home and go to bed. 

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I’m sitting here, typing this at 3 p.m. on a Sunday, with the worst hangover in the world, not even sure if this post is appropriate to share with the world, or even if it’s all that relevant to anyone but me. However, college Mily is looking at me, shaking their heads at how I can be so old, at so young. 

Hey, on the bright side, I won the only game of darts that Andrew and I played last night. That’s something that college Allie was never able to accomplish. Maybe being old isn’t so bad?

Accidents happens

I spend most of my time working, or sleeping, therefore my news consumption isn’t always on point. It’s Monday afternoon and I am just learning of the two plane crashes that occurred over this Holiday weekend. Yes, I know that’s sad, but it’s also true.

From what I’ve come to understand, the Pilot involved in the San Francisco crash had very little experience at flying. As little as only 40-something hours inside the wings of a Boeing 777, according to a local news station. The pilot had also never landed an aircraft into the San Francisco airport before this day. 

News regarding the Alaskan plane crash is too new. 

However, I can’t help but think- Should Pilots be allowed to fly a commercial jet full of passengers before logging a set number of in-flight hours with a more seasoned pilot?

Take learning to drive a car for example. I knew many kids back in High School who rushed to the DMV to get their permits. They probably drove around in their parent’s cars 3 or 4 times before booking a road test, and somehow passing. We all know these kids. The ones who by some act of God got their Driver’s License after only one try, and begged and begged their parents till they somehow won, and got their very own winter beater to drive themselves and their friends around in. And quite frankly, these kids were terrible drivers. 

It is no wonder to me anymore why my father was such a stickler when it came to teaching me how to drive. He wouldn’t give me lessons in the dark. He wouldn’t give me lessons in the rain, and he wouldn’t do it in the snow. The 16-year-old me agonized, thinking I’d never get to take my road test.

New York State mandated that every learning driver log so many hours behind the wheel with an experienced driver, something that needed to be signed off on by a parent or guardian. We also were required to take a 5-hour driving course, offered only through accredited driving schools. Though these courses were the bane of our young existence, they did teach us valuable lessons of no drinking and driving, no texting and driving, and checking your blind spots before merging into oncoming traffic. 

Of course, my father refused to sign MY slip until a year and a half later, when he personally thought I was ready to take the wheel by myself, or with other passengers in the car. 

I know driving and flying are two separate things. However, I can’t help but roll my eyes at some of the Tweets I’ve been seeing in regard to the recent news. 

Examples: Pilots should publicly share their flight experience with their passengers before taking off. Planes just simply aren’t safe; People should drive everywhere we need to go. 

That second, kind of ignorant comment is what got me thinking. Almost everyone I know has gotten in a car accident at one time in their lives. It could have been due to bad weather, lack of judgement, not paying attention to the road, or because the driver was under the influence of something. There are so many factors to consider when a car accident happens, however, no one ever says they’re going to start walking everywhere they go because automobiles are no longer safe.

Take the number of car accidents that occur every day in the United States. Heck, take even the number of accidents occurring in your metro area every day, and compare that number to the number of publicized plane crashes that have occurred since 9/11. Call me crazy, but I doubt the numbers even remotely compare. 

Keeping that in mind, is it fair to jump to conclusions before investigations have been completed? Is it completely fair to lay all blame on the pilot in both incidents and claim that cars are simply safer to travel in than airplanes? And if so, what should this pilot’s punishment be? 

It is really unfortunate when someone loses their life in one of these events. My heart truly goes out to the friends, families and loved ones of these victims. However, accidents do happen. Are we failing to recognize this simple fact? 

10 Outfits to “Rock” when you Celebrate our Independence

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Happy July, my wonderful readers! I cannot believe where the time has gone. In just two days, we will be celebrating one of my favorite holidays- Independence Day. Of course Andrew, myself and our friends will be partaking in the usual festivities. We’ve got a barbecue planned, and will be walking downtown to watch the city of Rochester firework show once it gets dark. 

As with any of our gatherings, we’ll be feasting on grilled chicken, burgers, beer and wine. Though I love all the food, music and celebrating, this is one of my favorite days to dress up. Nothing shouts “Summer” like some red, white and blue does. 

If you’re like me, you’ve been planning your perfect 4th outfit for weeks now. Here are just some ideas on what you can rock while you’re rocking out with your friends and showing your pride for our beautiful America.

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You can keep it simple and still be in the spirit, by wearing this classic outfit. White shorts and a royal blue tank keep the outfit casual, where a flag-printed scarf or red headband dress up the look a little bit. 

2. A white sundress with a skinny red belt and red sandals or flip flops. 

3. Anything Nautical themed. One of my favorite summer pieces is a Charlotte Russe tank top I purchased more than 4 years ago. It is cream colored, and has ropes for straps. It is the perfect tank for any summer occasion: the beach, dinner, or just hanging out by a fire. 

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Pinstripes. These CAbi capris pictured above are not only cute and stylish, but very comfortable to wear in any type of weather. Paired with a red peplum top and some red ballerina flats, you’re ready for day, night, or even the office. 

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Stars and stripes. I’ve seen these patriotic themed shorts everywhere this summer! Both Walmart and Old Navy have several styles available in this patriotic theme. Or, if you’re more of a DIY girl, a simple pair of cut offs and an old flag printed bandana will do the trick! Just be sure to keep the top of this outfit simple, by wearing a solid tee or tank, in red, white or blue. 

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Into nail art? Just one idea for patriotic nails is shown above. I used Essie’s butler please, OPI’s the thrill of brazil, some glitter polish and a french manicure stick, all purchased at a drug store. Pinterest also has many ideas using crackle, acrylics and nail stencils. 

7. Been to J. Crew lately? Though the fashions at this store are a bit on the pricier side, some really cute red and navy pieces are available. Skirts and tanks embellished with anchors are just a couple of my favorite items for sale at the store. 

8. Polka dots. One of my favorite prints is one that never goes out of style. I bought a navy and white polka dotted shirt from Charlotte Russe back when I was in high school. It’s a perfect “go-to” item for job interviews, office wear, dinners, parties and a white skirt or capris. 

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If skirts are your thing, this cute red and white striped skirt is the perfect look. Paired with polka dots or even a solid top, this look is sure to turn heads no matter where you end up. 

10. Maxi dresses/any other fashion item that you’re comfortable in. Really, the 4th of July is a day meant for pride and celebration. Even if you’re not into fashion, being dressed appropriately for the day is what matters. If none of these ideas work for you, just wear your favorite “feel good” outfit. You can never go wrong with a tried and true signature look!

Looking for more inspiration? Style Motivation offers 26 Amazing Outfit Ideas for the Holiday! 

 

7 things I hate about Ted Mosby

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  1. His clothes. If you’re some big shot architect in Manhattan, why not dress the part. I’m not saying take on Barney’s look, but you don’t need to look like you’re still in college wearing dirty button downs and graphic tees every day either. You’re almost 30 for Christ’s sake. 
  2. He is an “I love you” whore. Robin, you were right to be afraid. If a man declares his love for you on the first date, RUN. If he declares it with a blue trumpet, RUN. Heck, if the guy declares his affections for you any time in the relationship, before you’ve become “facebook official”, RUN. 
  3. He actually WANTS to get married. Don’t get me wrong on this one. I cannot wait for the day I get a pretty little ring and can tell all my Facebook friends and family that I am engaged. I can’t wait to plan a wedding and find a princess gown and all that stuff. But how many men in their 20’s do you know that are actively out, searching for their future Mrs. Something-or-other? ZERO. I even went ahead and asked Andrew about this one. If a guy wants to be married, he’ll propose to his girl. Other than that, whatever happens, happens. They’re just partying till the last call. 
  4. Luke and Leia? Ok ok. I guess it’s sweet that the guy wants children, and has already decided that he wants a boy and a girl. But really? I know Star Wars was probably a huge thing in his childhood, but why not just pull a Kim K. and name the kids North and South? Or High and low? Boy and Girl? Just something less stupid- you get the idea. 
  5. He is “not best friends” with a guy named Barney. Any man who wears suits even to the bar on weekends, and who’s known only for being a serial dater, sexter, whatever isn’t someone you need to be seen with socially. Especially if you’re actually looking for a wife. 
  6. He refuses to do different things. If you can’t find Ted at his architect firm or at his apartment, he’s probably downstairs at MacLaren’s. Now I am all for routine and finding a comfort zone. But as I tell my own friends: You’re not going to find your soulmate at the bottom of a bottle. Ordering another round isn’t going to score you a date. It is also likely that most of the other patrons of the bar are regulars. Meaning you’ve already hooked up and fucked them over, or you’ve seen the guys who they bring home on the regular, therefore turning you off before you can turn her on. 
  7. He needed an entire TV series to tell his children the story of how he met their mother. 

21 Days and Counting…

 

I haven’t had much to write about lately. Image

Actually that first sentence is a complete lie. I have encountered so many situations lately, both in my own life and through work and friends that I could write an entire novel. Some of these stories aren’t appropriate to share, and others, I’m just not ready to share with the entire Internet. 

However, I did celebrate a small milestone today. 21 days ago, I made a life changing decision to be Paxil free. 

I kind of jumped into this decision faster than I should have. The first few days without the medication were terrible- I had incredible hot flashes and felt like I was going to sweat my own skin off. I had stomach aches just from drinking a bottle of water, I was tired all the time, and had horrible brain zaps, a term which can best be described as the feeling one gets if they stick their finger into an electrical outlet, or touch the prongs of a plug. Imaging the jolt of electricity, but only flowing through your brain. Yeah, it’s really fun. 

As time progressed all of these side effects went away. I’m back to my normal sleep-less self, and I feel completely normal again. It’s such an amazing feeling to know I can kick a habit without running back to it when times get tough or I get a little sad. (It’ll be nice when I can say the same for shopping). 

Aside from the raging emotions, I haven’t felt this good in at least five years. One minute I’ll be laughing and happy, the next minute I’ll be tearing up over a song, or watching a child with Autism try to overcome his own obstacles on television. I’m told this is just another stage of the drug withdrawal though, and I’ll sure be happy when this phase has reached it’s end. 

To say it’s been an easy three weeks would be an utter lie, but I feel a sense of accomplishment I usually only get when I see my name in print, or the newspapers have decided to pick up another one of my news stories. 

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Giving up my “medicinal crutch” and learning to deal with stress and anxiety drug-free will continue to be a challenge for me, but I am so proud of the progress I’ve made so far. I Can’t wait to be able to say the same things about kicking the shopping and soda addictions 😉

Fictional Style Icon: Blair Waldorf

Greetings, Upper East Siders. You had some questions, and I am here to dish the answers. Who is the most stylish girl on the island of Manhattan? Well it’s our Queen B, of course.

Ok. Enough with the Dan Humphrey talk. Our wanna-be insider’s days as the queen of Gossip may be over for good, but the fashion inspiration that Blair Waldorf gave me will live on forever. From the very beginning, B’s style choices wowed me, and forced me to add some color and flair into my own wardrobe.

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Here, Blair takes her Constance Billard school uniform and dresses it up with some colored tights, white ballerina flats, and a bow belt. She shows young girls across America that you can follow the rules and stil have some fun.

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Blair’s outfit for the White Party that was held in the Hamptons one summer still remains as one of my favorite outfits ever. Here she combines style and class all while dishing a healthy dose of drama as she uses one guy to try and win over another one.

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Green and yellow seem to be one of B’s favorite color combos, as she is seen several times throughout the series wearing green jackets, carrying bright yellow bags, and of course wearing some colored tights with her Winter blues. Blair is another Queen of mixing color and pattern in one outfit, helping bring together flawless looks, episode after episode. Vintage swimsuits are just another example of her impeccable style.

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Whether she is seen ruling the steps of the Met, knee deep in her latest scheme, running her mother’s fashion empire or trying to win the affections of male counterpart, Chuck Bass, Miss B does so in outfits that I can’t help but NEED to try out. If only I had as many occasions and places to wear the pencil skirts, pumps, espedrilles and carry the clutches to as she does.

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No outfit is ever complete without Blair’s headband, her own version of the princess crown she eventually comes to wear for a short time. Paired with a bright designer handbag, any girl is ready to strut down the streets of the UES, or bounce around the suburbs of western New York in true rich girl style. Now, if only, B for Waldorf designs was a real fashion line.