What to Wear: When You Don't Feel Like Getting Dressed

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

I was at the passport office yesterday and a woman wheeled her stroller in. Her 2-year-old was sick. Like, kind of looked like a zombie baby, red eyes, goopy face sick. And she proceeded to park his stroller beside my chair, where he coughed on me for 20 minutes.

I woke up sick this morning.

And, since I'm not a hypocrite, here's a repost of what I'm wearing today. Hint: It has an elastic waist.


There's probably a solid three feet of snow on my lawn, but you know what? I don't care because I don't have a single place to go today and that is glorious. I actually purposely plan all of my week's stuff on one or two days. Tuesdays and Thursdays are always my busiest days, but that means I can relax a bit on the other days. And, since the roads are a mess, I'm absolutely taking advantage of that fact. I plan on hiding in my house, getting some work done and reading while my son naps.

What I'm saying in the most roundabout, least fashion bloggy way is that I'm not getting dressed today.

And guess what? Anyone who posts pictures of their outfits is probably showing off what they wear about an eighth of the time. Because mark my words, the rest of the time, they're in their sweats, hiding from their well-meaning neighbors like EVERYONE ELSE.

SO I'm not lying when I tell you that while I have a very extensive closet of cute clothes, I also have a HUGE collection of lounge clothes too. And I'm wearing some right now. And that's OK. Although I will say that even if I'm hanging out in the house all day, I'll wear something more than PJs to get through it. Because even if no one else is going to see me, if I stay in PJs all day, I'll undoubtedly start feeling gross and unproductive and unshowered all day. Simply changing into cute, well-fitting lounge stuff means I'm still totally comfortable, but I don't end up wallowing in self pity, Downton Abbey and poor food choices all day.

Here are some super cute options for getting dressed when there's no point in actually getting dressed.


Volcom pocket tee / Victoria's Secret vintage top / Knit shirt / Black tank top, $24 / Activewear pants / American Eagle Outfitters stripe pants / Accessorize button shoes / Pastry snakeskin shoes, $47 / Minnetonka bow shoes / Gap Logo Lounge Pants / Aero 87 Lace Full-Zip Yoga Hoodie
Fit is EVERYTHING. There's a huge difference between a cute pair of lounge pants and wearing your hubby's sweats. If your lounge clothes make you look like you and your hubby have roughly the same body shape, it's a problem. Hoodies and yoga pants are totally fine. When they fit. Also, a cute pair of slippers or house-approved shoes helps too. I have mukluks that I love, but I'll also wear moccasins and sneakers around. Just don't tell my Canadian parents, who think it's appalling when I wear shoes in my house.

And now, what not to wear.

Lounge Don'ts!

Men's sweatpants, actual pajamas, that gross souvenir T-shirt that you wear when dyeing your hair and ONESIES. Do I really need to even say this? If you slept in it the night before, change out of it. UNLESS you're sick or just had a baby because those times don't count.

For the record, I'm hanging out in Calvin Klein yoga leggings and a Roots Canada half-zip sweater today. And that's pretty much how I'll stay all day.

And I'm thinking about eating the loaf of bread I bought my neighbor.

Also, I'm a horrible, awkward shell of a human being.

Alright, sock it to me. Are you a "get dolled up every day" type? Or are you more of a "Put on pants when I have to go to Wal-Mart" kinda gal?

What I Wore: Recharged

Monday, January 26, 2015

I had two loooong naps over the weekend and I can't lie: It was glorious. Now I'm ready to tackle the week. Until Wednesday, when I will become very tired and require more naps. Funny how that works, right?

Seriously though, there's something to be said for a recharging weekend like that. We went out to dinner, took the kids to the arcade, rented a movie. When I was like, 19, I would have thought it was boring. Now I'm like "Pleaaaase can we just stay inside and watch a movie?" Putting the kids to bed and watching 22 Jump Street is basically my dream date now.

Anyway, this is what I wore on Saturday, which was ideal for both napping and eating. 

Top: Calvin Klein (here) (I also have this one in black and love it.) 
Jacket: Stoosh via Nordstrom (no longer available. I can't tell if it sold out fast or this brand just rotates through product really quickly) (similar) (super obsessed with this one)
Jeans: Calvin Klein (here)
Boots: Ardene - Canada (similar) (similar)
Bag: Coach (here) After a few weeks with this bag, I can say I'm definitely a fan. It's massive inside, so I can carry things like my Kindle, my obscene lip gloss collection, and an old-school planner. Yaaas. 

In the spirit of full disclosure, I will say that I got rid of the boots and wore moccasins to the arcade because come on, who wears heels to the arcade? My children would be happy to report, however, that they each came home with a pair of fuzzy dice, a dinosaur model, and a recorder for the low, low price of $20, my sanity, and about a gallon of hand sanitizer in the car.

The arcade is gross.

I just bundled the kids off to the bus, so now it's all work and Pandora from here on out. (Right now I'm listening to an instrumental version of Hotel California.)

Mondays really aren't so bad sometimes.

Freaky Friday

Friday, January 23, 2015

Happy Friday, guys! I just got home from a workout and might want to die. Everything hurts and I'm ravenously hungry, so food and a nap it is!

After Freaky Friday, natch.

Attention everyone: New fashion rule!! No wearing harem pants unless you are in a legitimate harem. See, it's handy and it's not as confusing as the whole white after Labor Day thing. 

How many bathroom mats does it take to make a hideous Muppet shrug? 

This looks like something Effie would wear in Hunger Games. 

Also, I hate that Hanging Tree song because in the middle they play Jennifer Lawrence saying "You" over and over again and it sounds like she's saying "Ew" repeatedly. 

"Little House on the Prairie: The Artsy Discovery Years" 

I always had cats growing up and they had the unfortunate habit of barfing into backpacks and my brothers and I wouldn't realize it until we got to school.

This sweater is bringing up some seriously repressed memories for me. 

Maybe it's because I've been listening to the Game of Thrones soundtrack lately, but this tunic makes me want to like, grow some grain, marry a cousin, and start a peasant uprising. 

My, aren't we fancy in our pom-pom bedecked pantaloons? 

If Seasonal Affective Disorder were a pair of pants.

No, seriously, I'm going to shower so I can go grab something to eat. Gotta look nice for my chicken. 

Review: RevelationsRX Masks!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Blaaaaaargh the last few weeks have been bananas. Working in marketing means that in January, every client renews their budgets and suddenly needs all sorts of writing, which means I've been glued to my phone and computer like woah. Yesterday, I was quietly trying to chew through a turkey burger while on an hour-long conference and I was hungry and it was torturous.

The struggle.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, RevelationsRX sent me some of their super-cool new products to take for a test drive. At first, I was like AGHHH I'm too busy to do a product review. But it ended up being a really good thing.

Here's why: When stuff gets crazy, I go go go from morning until night. So I need to physically be made to stop, and these face masks MADE ME STOP. At least, for two 45-minute stints each week. And that was enough for me to stop, recharge, and do something that was good for me.

After the kids were in bed, natch. I cannot relax when they are buzzing around.

Anyway, RevelationsRX sent me the kits for two of their products: The Deep Hydrating Mask and Serum, and the Tired Eyes, Puffiness, and Dark Circles kit (IT'S LIKE THEY KNOW ME).

It's pretty straightforward: Each kit comes with four masks, along with a rollerball serum for use throughout the week.

Now, I've used cloth masks that stay in one piece before and I freaking hated them. Mostly because they were stiff and they never stay on, and you have to scare your children because you 100 percent look like Rubberface from Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

So I was super happy to find that while the masks were on that cloth stuff, they're actually made of coconut fibers and really actually conform to your face. Like, you put it on, let it conform and peel off the backing. The mask is super thin and it just glues itself down. So I looked like I had a plastic face, but not a scary murder face. I appreciate that.

No pictures exist of such face. You wear them for 45 minutes and I used that time to have a bath and read. Shockingly, I don't snap a lot of naked bathtime reading pics. I'm not Courtney Stoddard and I'm scared of the Cloud.

My favorite of the two was definitely the puffy eye patches. They work in  the same way: Glue themselves down and you wear 'em for 45 minutes. I've also been keeping the rollerball serum next to my bed. It's part of my morning and night routine now. You can't take that away from me.

I get pretty dry winter skin and these forced me to slow down and take care of it. You use them once a week, and I've gone through two of each of the masks and feel like my skin is super soft.

I've always struggled with dark circles under my eyes, so I've been pretty happy to see the puffiness go down and my eyes lighten up a bit. Seriously, I'm very vain about looking younger than I am (as referenced by this post-patch picture of me in a cheerleader ponytail and hoodie). Dark circles make me actually look my age. That's not cool, man.

While I'd file the full face mask under "Great to have but not completely necessary," the eye patches are definitely keepers. I've tried eye patches before and didn't really see a difference, but these definitely made me feel like my eyes were brighter for the rest of the day. The serum is also loaded with caffeine and it's COLD so I felt like that really helped with puffy, tired eyes first thing in the morning.

The RevelationsRX line can be pricey, but I was super happy with the results. Luckily, they are offering free shipping and $15 off their products through this link. There, don't say I never do anything for you.

In the meantime, let's all be thankful for beauty products that force you to stop, do something nice for yourself, and read a good book simultaneously.

(This post was sponsored by RevelationsRX obviously, but the opinions are mine. I wouldn't steer you wrong.)

What I Wore: Black on Black

Monday, January 19, 2015

Yesterday, as I was cleaning up from breakfast, I sent my daughter to run up and have a quick shower before church. By the time I got upstairs, not only had she showered, she also drew herself a luxurious bath, using up all the hot water in the house.

So, because we had to sit around and wait for the water to warm up again for everyone's  shower, we were definitely late. And when I'm late, I default to monochromatic colors, and natural hair texture. When I blow dry my hair without a round brush, it grows to gospel country singer proportions and I have to get it under control. Still, it's way faster than the whole flat iron routine, even if we just called it a wash and skipped the first part of church anyway.

Eh, you win some, you lose some.

Top: Calvin Klein (here) (similar) (hahahaha)
Skirt: Freebird (similar) (similar)
Shoes: Steve Madden (similar) (so cute)

So basically, this is great for any occasion where you think you're going to be late, but you're so late you decide to can it. 

I think we've all been there, right?

10 Things I Learned From Losing 20 Pounds

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Okay, so as promised, here's my little spiel about losing weight last year. Bear with me, these thoughts have been floating around in my head all week so they might be a little disorganized. Therefore, I think a list is best to get organized and hopefully offer a few average-girl tips from what I've learned.

Last February was BANANAS. Between my kids' birthdays, our Disneyland trip, family coming to visit, and a baptism, I got a little lax on my eating habits. And by that, I mean I ate like two teenage boys instead of one out of pure convenience sake. And I didn't really think much of it, because sometimes you just eat a lot, right?

But when I had an OB/GYN appointment in March, I was totally shocked when I hopped on the scale and realized that I had seriously put on more than just a few pounds. And then, I saw a few pictures of myself from February and wasn't super happy with what I saw. The thing about being generally good at dressing yourself is the fact that you're really good at wearing stuff that flatters, so it kind of sneaked up on me.

But that's the thing, right? I wasn't super overweight and I've always been good about working out, but honestly, I simply didn't like where I was headed. That's the real reason I decided to start poking around the world of nutrition and fitness. Because I wanted to do better and I knew I could, simple as that.

So, here's some of the coolest/most important/most helpful stuff I learned along the way. I'm not a fitness guru: There are enough of those on Instagram. But I do think as a working mom of two with a mild interest in fitness, I have a unique perspective on this.

So, let's go and fitness motivation and such!

1. Being Fit is Empowering to Me.

When I started looking for a way to get back into shape, I focused specifically on methods that would build muscle. Look: I've been skinny. I have, genetically, a great metabolism, hence the 29 years of eating like all of my brothers combined. But I was over it and wanted to add muscle because you know what? Being strong makes me feel awesome. I like knowing I can throw weights around.

I chose to follow a plan called If it Fits Your Macros, or IIFYM. If you're interested, there's tons of resources online, but basically, it focuses on eating the right nutrition for your body and building muscle. I eat tons of protein and plenty of carbs and fat and all of that has been totally instrumental in building muscle.

The reason IIFYM appealed to me, besides the fact that it would help me build muscle, was that there's really no restriction whatsoever. No "safe" foods or "bad" foods: If it fits your daily allowance of carbs, fat, and protein, you eat it. That being said, it's a heck of a lot easier to meet your requirements when you eat good food, but it also meant that I could eat a sugar cookie without feeling like a total failure.

Sugar cookies eaten with a Diet Vanilla Coke are one of life's happiest things. I can't afford to lose that.

2. The Right Diet Plan Shouldn't be Life-Changing

I won't sit here and tell you I changed my life over three months. But I don't really think a wellness plan should be life-changing, really. Instead, I chose a method that was pretty close to the way I naturally eat. I like food. I didn't want to restrict anything. So tracking macros or nutrients was a way for me to continue eating almost as usual without overhauling my entire life and eventually slipping back into old ways.

Changing your life is super admirable, but not if it's completely unrealistic.

3. Protein is my Friend

I eat my weight in protein grams each day. That's a lot of protein. But it's definitely what made the difference for me. I'm a carb girl through and through, so I did have to learn to add protein to all of my meals. I prefer to get most of my protein from natural sources, but I do end up supplementing once a day. I love this brand of protein powder: I use it in shakes, stir it into Greek yogurt, and even use it in pancake batter. Sneaky!

4. I Hate Cardio, So I Stopped Doing It 

I've never been a fan of cardio, another reason why IIFYM was ideal for me. Because it works best with weightlifting, I was able to almost completely transition to weight-centric workouts with only one or two sessions of cardio each week. A spin class here and the elliptical there, but nothing too crazy.

Instead, I focus heavily on weights for 25 minutes a day. That's it. I focus on one area of the body each day so I also give my arms, legs, abs, and chest plenty of time to rest in between workouts, and I do one Pilates session a week for overall toning. FitnessBlender.com is my faaaaaavorite site for weight workouts and the occasional HIIT. I just choose a challenging workout and go for it. Seriously, it's 25 minutes. I can push through just about anything for that amount of time.

5. There are Opportunities to Move Outside of the Gym

I don't have a gym membership. I've had one like, once in my life and I never used it. I did everything at home with three sets of dumbbells, a kettlebell, and a yoga mat. But more than my 25 minute workouts was just finding opportunities to move throughout the day, whether it was playing soccer with my kids or whatever. One of my younger brothers works out with gymnastics rings, so the last time I was home we brought them to the park and tried ridiculous tricks. I totally woke up sore the next time, so it counts.

6. My Goal Weight Wasn't My Ideal Weight

Ask my friends: I was obsessed with the idea of weighing 125 lbs for three months. I thought if I reached that, I'd be happy. And I did reach that goal weight, but honestly, it was a pain in the butt to maintain. My body seems to be its happiest at around 128, so I had to learn that this goal I'd set for myself wasn't some magical elixir to happiness and fitness. And, since I've been able to maintain for so long, I'd rather maintain a few pounds heavier than struggle at a lighter weight. It's a number on a scale, people.

Also, let's remember that the scale isn't the only measurement of success here. I don't know about you, but my weight fluctuates based on EVERYTHING, from sleep to stress to Papa John's pizza. Check the way your clothes fit, your energy levels, and before/after pictures (which I strongly recommend with IIFYM – the scale always goes up when I lift heavier, even though I look better).

7. Do the Work and Don't Feel Guilty

Another reason I wanted to build muscle: It torches calories. When I have muscle on my body, eat well, and exercise, I don't feel guilty when I pig out on the weekends or go out for burgers with my friends. Not only do I not feel guilty, but it doesn't affect the way I look. A handful of Cheetos won't make you fat. A handful of Cheetos coupled with a lack of exercise and processed food on the daily will. I, for one, hate feeling guilty. Lay the right groundwork and a Saturday night feast doesn't totally derail your progress.

8. Meal Planning Makes it Easy

I suck at meal planning. I definitely don't make my meals in advance. I do, however, punch my day's worth of meals into MyFitnessPal each morning for two reasons: First, to make sure my macros are on track so I can adjust them if necessary and second, I'm less likely to dive face-first into a pint of ice cream if my phone already says I'm supposed to snack on fruit.

Also, I found that when food isn't easy, I default to easy processed stuff. It costs more, but buying pre-chopped fruits and vegetables, buying a cooked rotisserie chicken, or using vegetable steamer bags makes healthy food just as easy as eating crap.

I also find that I eat a lot of the same food. I don't mind, it makes it easier for me. I know exactly how much protein is in a Costco turkey burger or their lime-cilantro shrimp (staples of my diet) so it's a no-brainer.

9. Fitness is Not Reserved for Fit People

My diet sucked in the past, but I've always been pretty good about exercising. Still, swapping out cardio for weightlifting was intimidating at first. Seriously, Instagram is packed with jacked women who dedicate their lives to this. I have 25 minutes tops.

But the thing is that fitness isn't only for fit people, even if it seems like everyone at the gym is Arnold quality. I freakin' love this commercial for This Girl Can. I don't care if you jiggle, if you can't fit into your skinny jeans or you feel like a complete idiot in your group workout class, find something you love and move your butt.

A couple of weeks ago I heard about a type of yoga and I decided to try it in my living room. Little did I know, it was yoga mixed with like, African dance and extreme pelvic thrusting. I laughed my face off, did a 30-minute workout, and shelved it forever. I felt like a complete idiot but guess what? I still got a workout in.

10. As Much as it Sucks, Nutrition Really, Really Matters

I was deeeefinitely in the "work out to eat" camp before. I used to proudly proclaim that I did 60 minutes of cardio so I could eat bread. But yeah, nutrition matters. These days, I down about 1,700 calories made up of about 40 percent protein, 30 percent fat, and 30 percent carbs. Once I cleaned up my nutrition, my workouts were so so so very much more effective. It was like my body was saying "Oh, that's what you were trying to do?"

Really, 20 pounds wasn't that much in the grand scheme of things. I'm a couple sizes smaller and a little lighter, but more importantly, I'm way more conscious about what I do to my body. I loved learning about nutrition and reading up on various theories and seeing hard work turn into something real.

Here's a before and after comparison. Like I said, 20 pounds didn't make or break me. I'm not suddenly wildly happy or a fitness guru, or making goals to run triathlons. I'm just really glad this dress fits better.

Does that make me shallow? 

What I Wore: Back on Track

Monday, January 12, 2015

Yay I'm working on my fancy new computer. My techie brother-in-law came to set it all up on Friday night while his wife  and I gossiped, ate Cosmos popcorn (seriously you guys that stuff) and watched Brooklyn Nine-Nine so I feel like that was a fair trade-off. 

Also I vowed not to eat over my new keyboard and then remembered that vow after I was polishing off my second piece of toast this morning... over my keyboard. One day I'll learn. 

Speaking of food because it's 100 percent my favorite subject, I wore this outfit when we went to celebrate the New Year with copious amounts of food at Tucano's, which is one of those Brazilian BBQ places where they just carve meat onto your plate at regular intervals. Starting the year off with a belly full of steak just seemed right. 

Top: Vince Camuto (here in red) (short sleeve) (plus)
Jacket: Target foreeeeever ago (similar) (similar)
Jeans: Calvin Klein (here)
Boots: Frye (here) (similar) (love this brand)
Necklace: Nordstrom (similar)

Now that it's 12 days into 2015 (and I had my steak fix) I got back to eating the way I normally do, when shortbread cookies, homemade caramels and meatballs aren't a constant distraction. I hate to be the typical "New Year, New You" person, but there is something to be said for hitting the reset button after giving yourself plenty of leeway over the holidays. 

Last April(ish) I acknowledged that I could no longer eat the diet of a teenage boy and over the course of three months (!!) got rid of 20 pounds and actually maintained for the rest of the year. Knowing how to eat and plan my workouts this time around, I feel soooo much better about getting back to my regular routine. 

On Wednesday, I'll talk a little about why I decided to make the change and how it was super easy and not restrictive at all, so check back then, k? It'll be fun and not preachy, I promise. 


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