Office Inspo

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My new apartment has an awesome breakfast nook that I was planning on using to, well, eat breakfast, but I’ve decided that maybe it’s more practical to put my desk in there because I eat all of my meals on the couch anyway it would be nice to have a little more room for it so that I can really spread out when I work. For me, the slightest decorating idea turns into a Pinterest binge and I’ve found more office inspiration than I can keep track of–oh, and if you haven’t seen it yet, Katey McFarlan’s office tour is the cutest thing ever and totally reflects my style–wish I could just order all of the stuff she has and dump it into my apartment, haha.

Let me know what you think of the looks below!

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I’ve had my eye on this For Like Ever poster for, like, ever (sorry, bad pun), and I love how it adds a pop of color to a white/clear desk. PS: Curious as to how the poster got so popular? This article explains it all. Hint: it all started with a thesis project!

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Could this office area be more cheerful? I think all of that color would be a little too loud for my space, but can you imagine how much fun it would be to work there?

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I’ve had this imaged pinned for awhile and love the classic look and the books laid out on top of the desk. Great idea to use a desk as a nightstand!

Decisions, decisions. Which look do you like the best?

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Lilly For Days

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I ordered this Lilly dress a couple of months ago on Poshmark (hop on over and shop my closet!) and planned to wear it for summer events, but I think it would actually be cute with tights as well when the weather gets cooler. Most of Lilly’s dresses have such loud prints that they’re definitely seasonal, but the darker colors on this dress definitely make it a little more fall appropriate in my opinion.

The dress is super comfy and has a fun print without being too juvenile. The tie belt is a nice feature in order to make the dress a little less boxy. Also, I’m still mastering the art of the outfit photo, eek.

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Stop Right Now, Thank You Very Much

Ignore the “Stop Right Now” portion of this title because that’s not really relevant….I just like the Spice Girls. 😉

I am a huge proponent of sending thank you notes (and always have been!). Seriously, when I was little I would start writing them immediately after my birthday parties were over (#coolkid). I’m not kidding: presents would be opened, friends would go home, and I would run upstairs and start crafting my thank yous! Now, in the age of text messages, emails, and even Snapchat, it can be easy to thank friends digitally, and in many cases that’s completely acceptable, but I think sending a handwritten card thanking friends or family for the birthday present or holiday gift they sent you means that much more. Sending a thank you note after a job interview is also well-received and can never hurt in my opinion. Just make sure you choose a more professional-looking piece of stationery than you’d send to your BFF! Without further ado, a few of my favorite stationery picks…

Professional-looking notecards:

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These gender-neutral cards are great for summer AND are only $4.99 for a 10-pack!

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This simple, monogrammed stationery is super elegant and not nearly as expensive as it looks!

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These classic cards would be great for a more formal setting.

Fun notecards:

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Anyone who knows me knows how much I love macarons. These notecards are cheerful and are something your friends will hold onto!

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Umm, how cute are these?! And they’re currently on sale for $4.95!

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Loving the colors and fun phrase on these.

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What I’m Watching

Comfy bed + blanket + Netflix? Works for me. Image via Pinterest.
Comfy bed + blanket + Netflix? Works for me. Image via Pinterest.

I was never a big TV watcher growing up, but within the past couple of years (likely thanks to Netflix streaming), I have given in and found some favorites. If you’re looking for a new (or new-to-you, at least) show to binge, I’d suggest trying one of these!

Grey’s Anatomy: I became addicted to this show during the summer of 2015 and watched constantly (I’m talking multiple episodes a day). I made it to Season 5 in only a couple of months, but then I started grad school full time and didn’t have time to keep up with a 12+ season show. However, I’m trying to get back into it now because 1) I love all of the characters (but especially Meredith and Alex!) and 2) I really, really want to catch up at least to the musical episode because I absolutely love the songs the characters sing on the Grey’s Anatomy soundtrack (seriously, if you haven’t listened to it, at least play those several songs!). Also, is it weird that I kind of liked Dr. Montgomery Shepherd? My guess is this is a pretty unpopular opinion! Also, everyone tells me that the early Grey’s seasons are the best, so I’m kind of hesitant to continue, ah! Maybe I’ll just start again from the beginning and stop after Season 3!

Younger: Oh my goodness, my friends and I are obsessed with Younger! The episodes are so short (about 20 minutes), but we all agree that so much is packed into that amount of time that the show feels much longer (in a good way!). Plus, since it’s short, you have no excuse not to watch! Is it embarrassing to admit that it was totally the highlight of our Thursdays this past spring? I even rewatched Season 1 with my mom when we were on a trip together because I love the show so much and wanted to introduce it to someone, haha. Hilary Duff + the publishing world + NYC + an unrealistic but endearing plotline? Sold.

Revenge: You have to watch this show. I have always loved “mystery” shows like this and discovered Revenge in 2014 after having gotten into Scandal. I actually think the two shows have a ton in common in terms of some of the plot points. I also love Emily, the main character, and she and Nolan are the ultimate power BFF pair. While this show gets a little more ridiculous season after season (as many shows tend to do), it’s kept me watching!

House of Cards: I used to watch this half zoned out after my hostessing shifts, which is funny to think about because HOC is definitely not a mindless show—but I still liked it! Plus, it’s in DC, so I feel like I have to mention it on here! However, I’ve also heard that this one goes downhill over time and I’ve also figured out something that happens to one of my favorite characters because I Googled her name…boo. Note to self: DO NOT Google character names. It never ends well!

My other go-to shows: Modern Family and The Middle (I’ve watched both of these for YEARS and haven’t missed a single episode!), How to Get Away with Murder (the fact that it was supposed to be taking place at a school based on Penn, where I went to grad school, makes it even better), and Kimmy Schmidt (I’ll have to do a whole post on that one…I even dressed up as Kimmy for Halloween last year #superfan). What are you all watching??

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Gray Malin Water Bottle + Easy Craft

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Just popping in to share some fun news…Gray Malin (one of my and many other bloggers’ fave photographers) has designed S’well bottles. I REPEAT. What a great collab! If only I hadn’t caved and ordered a different S’well bottle a few weeks ago! I absolutely love this print.

Owning one of Gray’s prints is still a home decor goal of mine, haha. But last year, after seeing how Allyson framed a Gray Malin card from J.Crew (how did I miss out on that one?!), I was inspired to make my own Gray “art” for cheap. I purchased a roll of his wrapping paper (which literally arrived to my NYC apartment the day before I moved, oops) and then have framed it, used it to make cards for fellow Gray-obsessed friends, and more! Just give yourself plenty of time to order if you decide you’d like to do the same.

I love how my framed “print” (above) turned out and it definitely will tide me over until I can get a “real” piece!

 

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Reading and Reviewing, July: Part 2

Books AND watermelon? What more could a girl want?
Books AND watermelon? What more could a girl want? Image via Make Life Easier.

I was absolutely speeding through books last month, so I decided to make a part 2 to my original July post…now let’s just see if I can keep this reading streak going in the fall!

Spinster, by Kate Bolick: I saw this book on the shelf at my local library and had remembered hearing about it at some point. I brought it home and was really enjoying it (this is another book that was made for a former soc major!), when I came across a part where Kate mentioned her small, liberal arts college in Maine. I immediately took to Google and realized that she had graduated from Colby in 1995, and our alumni magazine had done a profile on the book a few years back. Such a small world, and an interesting take on being a single woman in today’s era mixed with factoids about some of the “spinsters” that inspired Kate herself. I have to admit I skimmed through many of the more historical chapters, but that was just because I was so fascinated with Kate’s own life that I preferred to read the more autobiographical pieces.

Meternity, by Meghann Foye: Speaking of Colby authors, the writer of this book is also an alumna of my college! I had the opportunity to meet Meghann a couple of times when I worked in magazines in NYC, and I love her take on the industry (I’ll have to say as a 22-year-old, I was pretty oblivious to some of the dynamics she describes with regard to working mothers!). This book tells the story of Liz, a single, 31-year-old editor who has had enough with her coworkers dashing out of the office to deal with kid-related responsibilities and decides to take matters into her own hands (yes, this means wearing a bump under her outfits each day) to get the “me-time” off she believes she deserves. This book has received a substantial amount of criticism with regard to its subject matter, but I greatly enjoyed reading it (it’s a light, quick read that I can totally see being made into a rom-com). I kept waiting for Liz to get “caught” but the big “reveal” went over more smoothly than I had expected!

After You, by Jojo Moyes: I jumped on the whole Me Before You bandwagon back in January, and I couldn’t wait to pick up the sequel this summer (actually, I did wait a bit and found it on sale for 50 cents at a thrift shop—score!). I had read reviews that said the second book wasn’t as good as the first, but I disagree—I loved hearing the rest of Louisa’s story and laughed along as I read about her new employment journey (working at an airport bar), romantic escapades, and membership in a grief support group. Some of the humor actually reminded me of Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic series (gotta love those British writers!). This book definitely raised a bunch of stronger emotions for me as well, and on a deeper note I could relate to a lot of Moyes’ (or Louisa’s) observations about grief, which made this a thought-provoking read.

Never Have I Ever: My Life (So Far) Without a Date, by Katie Heaney: Wow, ok, this book round-up really has a whole single/girl power/soul-searching theme to it. BUT let’s get to this next one. I had heard about this book when it first came out a couple of years ago and was always curious about it but never got around to picking it up. Plus, the back flap of the book compares Katie to Mindy Kaling and Sloane Crosley (both of whom I find hilarious), so I figured I couldn’t go wrong reading it, and I was right!

20 Something 20 Everything, by Christine Hassler: This book was exactly what I needed to read after being in a bit of a funk. Christine Hassler hit the nail on the head within the first few pages of the book as she listed the “symptoms of a twenty-something crisis” and I nodded along in agreement with quite a few of them (while also realizing, ‘Oh, other people feel this way, too!’). This is definitely a must read for those of you in the same boat! It’s also an easy read to skim…I jumped around and read through a few sections and will make a mental note that the others are there, should I want to flip back in the future!

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Weekend Recap

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What a weekend! It started off as so, so calm (I pretty much slept all day Saturday when I wasn’t DIY-ing), but I managed to do a TON on Sunday. I would rather be go, go, go on the weekends–at least one of the days–so that when I’m sitting at my desk during the week I can feel that I made the most of my time off! This weekend, I managed to check a ton off of my DC/summer to-do list:

On Saturday, I got right to work on my DIY project! After a quick trip to the hardware store, I spray painted both the bar cart I purchased from my friend last fall (I decided to turn it silver, which will match my gray furniture) and then started on one of my bamboo pieces. Rather than using chalk paint, I ended up going with a blue spray paint that also contains a primer, and it looks good so far! The weather was super hot and humid which doesn’t make for the best painting conditions, so I’ll have to wrap everything up after work one day this week.

On Sunday, I took a photography class through the Capital Photography Center. The class was mainly for work but also for fun–since it was dedicated to iPhone photography, it’ll be super helpful no matter what I’m doing! I’m signed up for a DSLR class this fall and I’m looking forward to that one.

After the class, which was held in the National Portrait Gallery, I strolled around DC for a bit and finally tried Momufuku Milk Bar. I had been meaning to go for ages, but I never managed to do so in New York and thought the DC location would likely be less chaotic anyway. I got a classic “cereal milk” flavored cone which was HUGE (seriously, the portions are much bigger than they look on Instagram, haha). I then met up with my family for an early birthday dinner at Farmers Fishers Bakers! The restaurant was awesome and reminded me of the one I worked at in Philly (also sustainable and organic).

Ooooh, and this weekend I also watched the Grey’s musical episode (FINALLY) and finished my latest read (a book post is coming to the blog tomorrow!), because #priorities. Seriously, such a fun-filled weekend (even if it got off to a slow start!).

What did you all do? Oh, and happy birthday, Harry Potter–anyone try out the Snapchat filter? Ha!

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Sweaty and Saving

Looking for cute workout clothes on a budget? Don’t, uh, sweat…I’ve got you covered!

While I love a good piece of Lululemon workout gear, there are so many cute, cheap fitness brands and accessories that it’s easy to put together a cute gym outfit without spending in the triple (!) digits. I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite affordable fitness finds below. Did I mention the Adidas duffle bag pictured below is only $11.99?! Also, I’m absolutely loving that yoga mat. What would you pick?

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Water bottle, duffle bag, yoga mat, tank, leggings

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Ginger Jar Bar Cart

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I already mentioned the other day that I’m a bit of a furniture fanatic…let’s just say that when it comes to bar carts, my crazy tendencies are even more magnified!

In my first apartment in New York City, I used a small console table from Pier 1 as my “bar cart,” but honestly it never had any bottles on it and mostly just held cute cups, straws, coffee table books, and the like. When I moved to Philadelphia, a friend of mine told me she was selling her gold, vintage-looking bar cart for only 30 bucks, and you can bet I jumped on the subway to her place to take that baby home (don’t worry, I took an Uber for that part) the minute she was free! However, since that cart is pretty large, I ended up eventually using it as a side table next to my bed (I was inspired by the image below), and I used a different cart (also a secondhand score!) for the actual bar supplies. Whew, that’s a lot to keep track of, I kind of have furniture ADD at times! Let’s not talk about the other cart I purchased from Goodwill and then fixed up and sold…

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If you’re a normal person who only buys ONE bar cart and sticks with it (please teach me your ways), you may now be wondering how to style it. While there are a million posts floating around the internet on how to decorate a bar cart, I’ll have to say that coming across the above image on Pinterest definitely inspired me. Ginger jars have been and continue to be all the rage among bloggers and other interior decor-obsessed folks, and I love the idea of storing them on the bottom shelf of a cart.

I guess I would maybe worry about them getting knocked over by eager bar cart visitors (ha!), but otherwise I’m totally on board. Thoughts on this look?

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