Monday, August 26, 2013

{we're feelin' 22}

Friday was my birthday! & Dylan's! We turned 22 :)

We met up at the beach & had such a great weekend! The weather was ah.may.zing.

^^ps. this is the cool beach umbrella alternative...the sombrilla

I made homemade cinnamon buns {recipe coming soon!} & this sprinkle cake. It was...oh my delicious. {& totally out of the box, by the way. Betty Crocker FTW.}

^^I cut the "2" out of parchment paper & placed it in the icing. 
Sprinkles went EVERYWHERE, but the end result was pretty good!

As always, we exchanged gifts after cake. Here's a sneak at some...

^^Dylan designed this GORGEOUS blue ring for me. I got her the Big Ben ring holder.

^^Dylan knows I love prints. & she really knows me. This quote is perfect.
It was my favorite gift.

^^I also got her this pretty top from Anthropologie. It's so HER I had to get it. 

The glass bottles were broken out too. I mean...doesn't Coke just taste better in them??

^^I've wanted these straws for a while. Our birthday was a good excuse.

We topped off our birthday with some sparklers...& promptly set the carpet on fire.

Love you Dylan! I'm so lucky you're my twin.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

{on being the girl who doesn't drink}

^^this was not my birthday, but it does show my drink of choice.

On my 21st birthday, I ordered a Coke.

I'll get back to that in a minute.

While I was getting a pedicure the other day, I picked up a recent issue of Seventeen magazine. I haven't read this particular magazine in a couple of years, but since all of the Vogues, Peoples, & Vanity Fairs were taken, I decided to give it a read. The fashion & stars highlighted in the issue were a bit younger than what peak my interest nowadays, but one particular article stuck out to me. It was in the "real life" section & it was about a girl who felt continually pressured to party & drink in college because of her friends. Even after saying she wanted to go home, her friends would convince her to stay & throw back a few more. She relented because she didn't want to be the "one" without a drink at the party, even if she didn't want one to begin with. Once she blacked out & woke up in the hospital to get her stomach pumped did she realize that partying was more important to her friends than she was.  It was only after that did she finally stand up for herself.

I don't drink alcohol.

I've never had a beer. I've never had a full glass of wine. I've never finished a flute of champagne. I've never ordered a drink from a happy hour menu. When my friends & I go out for Mexican, I skip the sangria. And bottomless margaritas? I've never even gotten close to the bottom.

I'm not widely known as "The Girl Who Doesn't Drink"...but that's who I am. I'm not trying to make a statement by not drinking. I don't think I'm superior over someone who does. It's simply a choice I've made. A personal one, at that. I have my reasons for not consuming alcohol, none of which I'm going to go in to here, but it's a decision I've made & one I am proud of. I'm 100% okay with being the girl who orders a ginger ale at a bar. & I'm not ashamed to admit that I'd rather toast with sparkling apple cider than champagne on New Years Eve because the taste is so. much. better.

I'm bringing this up here because I know I'm not the only person who chooses not to drink at my age. I don't personally know many of those people, but I know they're out there. So I'm writing this for those people & the people who are afraid to say no. The people like the girl in Seventeen. The people who don't want to decline a beer because they don't want to be seen of as "lame".  Or the ones embarassed to order a Sprite, even though that's all they want.


I've been that girl. I've had my fair share of stares & "What do you mean you don't drink?" questions. I've had to say the, "Yes, I AM 21, but no, I'm fine with just water, thanks" speech many many times.  I've been heckled & made fun of. I've even been given a drink in spite of my saying no. But you know what? I don't owe an explanation to anybody. Do I ask people why they drink? No. So why do I need to explain to them why I don't?

Is it fun to be the only sober girl at the party? Not all the time. Am I totally fine with being the automatic designated driver?  No way. {Even though being responsible & safe is at the utmost importance, just because you've made the choice to stay sober, while your friends choose to drink, doesn't mean people can take advantage of you. You do not have to drive them every time. They can find their way home.} Can it get a bit awkward when everyone orders a mimosa at brunch except you? Yes.

But so what?!

This quote says it all: "The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and LIVE as only you can." - Neil Gaiman

I know it's hard being the black sheep on the farm. Especially when that farm is college & there's drinks a flowin' & parties every weekend & dates to be attended to. I wasn't in a sorority, so I was never obligated to go to any events or get-togethers where alcohol was served & flowing like water. But I still went to college. It was there. I was a black sheep.

I'm not saying I'll never drink alcohol. I haven't made a pact to not drink for the next 10/20/30 years. But for right now, this is where I am in my life. I'm completely sure of myself & confident in the choices I make. A few years ago I used to stress about how to say "no". Was it weird of me to not drink? Should I just suck it up & accept the glass of wine? But it's not & I didn't. & I am so proud of that. You should feel the same.

So yes. On my 21st birthday, I ordered a Coke. & even though the waiter made a joke & tried to convince me to order champagne, I stuck with my soda.

& it was delicious.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

{fab find: white linen pants}

I know it's almost Labor Day & there's that "no white after Labor Day rule"... 

{or is that just for shoes?}

...but I'm a fan of white linen pants well into the fall. The autumn season always has some of the best weather of the year; you can still eat outside, the humidity is gone, & the white brings back memories of the just-passed summer. 

The pair below are from the clearance rack at Old Navy. I guess I should tell you I have them in black as well. And I may have gone to three separate Old Navys to get pairs for my mom & Dylan. It was well worth it, though, because even though they're so comfortable you want to sleep in them...they can be spruced up for work.

Dylan rocked them by pairing a classic vest, a solid tank, & a fancy necklace. Oh, & pink lipstick. Pink lipstick is always a good idea.

Professional, stylish, & comfortable. Totally fab. 

{necklace - J.Crew // vest - Urban Outfitters // pants - Old Navy // shoes - DSW // glasses - Ray Ban}

Old Navy is now sold out of these pants, thanks to me, but similar pairs are at GapNordstrom, Revolve, & Roxy. Go get yourself some!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Friday, August 16, 2013

{blogshop nyc | day 2}

Here are scenes from Day 2 of Blogshop NY...

^^our FAB gift bags 

^^Angela & Bri...the gals behind Blogshop!

I made this gif. 

I also made this corkboard...down to the tape & confetti!

I'll do one final write-up next week!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

{blogshop nyc | day 1}

Here's some scenes from Day 1 of Blogshop...

 I will write more soon. 
But in short, it was 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

{every blogger's dream}

Today & tomorrow I'm headed to Brooklyn to attend the I Heart Blogshop workshop. I've wanted to go for over a year now & today's finally the day! I originally didn't get in & was SO bummed to be on the wait list...but then the clouds parted! & someone dropped out! Hooray!

I Heart Blogshop was started by two best friends, Bri & Angela, in May 2011. They basically travel around the world & teach photoshop to bloggers. Every.single. blogshop sells out. I am feeling so lucky to be one of the attendees today. Someone posted on Facebook that she flew in from Glasgow to come. I mean, what?!?

I can't begin to tell you how excited I am. Not only will it be fun for me to connect with other bloggers, but it'll help me make this a better blog. I'm sure I'll have more than a few tricks up my sleeve once I'm done :)

I'm going armed with my camera, so be ready for pics!

Here's some photos from past workshops...

Happy Wednesday! Half-way through the week!

*all photos from the I Heart Blogshop website & Facebook. I don't own them!

Monday, August 12, 2013

{diy project: oyster shell mirror}

DIY Oyster Shell Mirror

What you need:
- Mirror {it's easier to use one with a thick frame}
- Oyster shells
- Liquid nail or clear weld

My aunt Kimbie bought this simple, pretty mirror at Lowe's for one of the guest bathrooms. {I'm a Home Depot gal myself, so I was impressed by this find. Lowes has a style department?! Who knew?} Kimbie told me that on their drive from Texas to Florida, they always pass an oyster shucking company. She had this great idea to make an oyster mirror with the one from Lowe's, so she gathered the courage to sneak into the back of the factory one Saturday & take some. You see...they throw away all of the shells since they only want the oysters. Such a waste, right?!

Here's Kimbie gathering some shells:

Look at all of those shells! She said it smelled horrible, but she came home armed with buckets of beautiful oysters.

After cleaning & letting them dry thoroughly, we got to work.

Here's where I apologize for my photos. We worked out on the porch, and it was so.darn.humid. outside that my lens kept fogging over.

^^Best "before" shot of the mirror^^

1. Pick the shells you want to use & space them out on the mirror. This saves you time later so you're not searching for what shells to use. It also helps you figure out how many you actually need.

2. Spread glue on the back of the shell AND on the mirror. Repeat until you finish.

^^I used liquid nail, Kimbie used the clear weld. They were equally strong options!^^

3. We let the mirror dry for an hour & then went back to check on each shell. There were some that didn't really attach to the mirror, so we had to add more glue. Each shell differed in shape & size; some were more bumpy than others, therefore some needed more glue than others.

^^First layer of shells.^^

4. Once they were dry, we added a second layer on top of the first with smaller oysters to fill in the empty gaps.

5. Let it dry...then hang!

I LOVE it! 

It was one of the easiest projects I've ever done & it makes such a difference in the room. Kimbie has a ton of shells left over...I wonder what she'll do with the rest!

Thanks for letting me join in on this Kimbie! xo.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

{fun, cheap beachy art}

My aunt & uncle's house in Seaside, FL is BEAUTIFUL. It's literally eye candy. I actually feel like I'm living in an issue of Coastal Living magazine. I'm hoping to snap a few pics later this week to show you.

The best part? My aunt Kimbie is a DIY queen with a capital Q. I can't tell you how many times I've asked, "Where did you get this painting/art/table/chair?" only to have her answer modestly, "Oh, well...I made it." :) Love people like that.

I noticed four mirrored frames in the dining room with happy words written within them. I thought it was a simple, understated art piece, but she told be she just hadn't found the right thing to put in them yet. Well...when she was in town this morning, she found 4 beachy cards and they were perfect! All we did was cut off the back and tape them in the matte. Total coast? $3!

This whole project happened so fast, I didn't have time to run upstairs & grab my nice camera. So phone pics it is.

^^grr, I hate glares.