Heat Wave

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The last few days have been unbearably hot and humid.  I’m going to be honest- when it comes to the weather, I’m the most annoying person in the world. Image I love when it rains, but only if I get to be in my bed all day listening to the storm and watching movies or sitting in a cafe, drinking coffee and writing.  If I have to be out working or running errands, rain is THE worst.  I also LOVE summer.  When the calendar is on the brink of summer days, I get that feeling that only the impending heat and sense of freedom and fun of summer brings.  But then summer comes and it’s hot and humid as hell and I’m instantly over it.  Talk about being hard to please! I just like a dry 72 degrees, okay, you guys?  Don’t judge me. 

With that being said, I’m being fickle again and eagerly anticipating the start of autumn.  The past week’s heat wave only intensified this desire and now that it’s cooling down, I’m already thinking about which outfits I’ll wear this weekend in the cooler weather.  (And by “cooler”, I mean that it’s still going to be 70 degrees outside. Baby steps, people.) I’ve already jumped the gun and started painting my nails with my “fall colors”, like Essie’s “Demure Vixen”.  Jesus help me…is it October yet?

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A Classic Film: “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”

When I was a little girl, my family and I would spend a few weeks of summer at my late great uncle’s lake house in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia. The house was beautiful, the lake was secluded and as an eight-year-old, I especially loved driving the speed boat and pretending I was in an action movie.  (Thanks, Dad!)  Throughout the years we spent vacationing there, we made many memories, such as the time my sister, Courtney, my friend, Jordan, and I ate so much candy that I literally had a candy hangover the next morning, complete with vomiting. On that same trip, Jordan introduced me to a little television show called Law & Order: SVU and clearly, eight seasons on DVD later, that was a life-changing moment for me. (ELLIOT AND OLIVIA FOREVER…..sorry.)  I can remember one morning when Courtney and I were still young baby angels (probably ages six and eight, respectively) when fate intervened and led us to the cabinet under the VCR. As we dug through the collection of dusty movies hidden there, we found something that would change our lives forever: a VHS copy of an 80’s movie called Girls Just Want to Have Fun.  The worn case displayed a teenage Sarah Jessica Parker jumping joyfully in the air, a teen Helen Hunt wearing a hat with a huge ass grasshopper on it and a young Shannen Doherty flipping her hair.  I turned the case over and began to read the synopsis.  I stopped when eyes landed on the word “dance”.  I knew in that moment that this movie was going to be EVERYTHING. girls-just-wanna-have-fun

And I was right.  The plot focuses on Janey (played by the iconic SJP), a teenaged girl who spent her childhood moving from one army base to the next with her family, which is headed up by her uber strict, militant father.  Janey ends up at a private school in Chicago (holla!) and is quickly befriended by Lynn Stone (Helen Hunt) after she gives a really pathetic introduction of herself to her new classmates.  Said intro ended with the sighed statement of “I love to dance”, which her classmates really judged her for and became my go-to phrase in any situation. While Janey helps Lynn babysit a ginger baby (“babysit” is a loose term, as the child is sitting ON a pizza at one point), Lynn convinces her that she should audition for DANCE TV, the most popular show on television that films in Chicago. Long story short, Janey’s father gives her a hard “negative” when she asks permission to audition, which she promptly ignores. So reserved, naive Janey gets paired with bad boy Jeff Malene and the rest is history. (Since I know that after you read this, you all are going to stop whatever you’re doing to watch this movie, I won’t spoil the ending for you.)

The fashion in this movie is spot-on.  SJP pulls off leggings and a crop top unlike anyone else and her hair is fiercely huge. And let’s be real, this was the performance of Helen Hunt’s career. As I mentioned before, she wears a hat with a huge plastic grasshopper on it and I’m going to be honest, I’m pretty sure at some point she also wears a hair clip featuring a plastic stegosaurus.  I was infinity jealous of Lynn’s devil-may-care attitude and outrageous style.  I mean, the girl literally added Velcro to every part of her school uniform so that after school, she could take the sleeves off her blazer and turn it inside out to reveal a leather interior. COOLEST PERSON EVER. Sadly enough, I never had the opportunity to steal her genius, as I always went to public school. Disappointing.

My absolute favorite part of this film is the dancing. When I was younger, I was enthralled by the dancing scenes. SJP was a phenomenal dancer and the supporting cast were fantastic as well. I still love anything related to dancing or gymnastics (see: obsessions with the Olympics and DWTS) and when Courtney and I were young, we’d watch this movie on repeat at Smith Mountain Lake and then tried our hardest to recreate the dances. Unfortunately, our “lifts” consisted of us jumping up on the bed and posing like we were being lifted by a male partner, so the grace and skill of my dancing were definitely amplified in my head.  Oh, well. Girls just want to have fun!

This movie contains the best of all worlds: comedy, drama, DANCE, great/hilarious 80’s music, one hot guy, awesome 80’s fashion, SARAH JESSICA PARKER, witty one-liners, strict parenting, and my favorite thing ever, MONTAGES. It is the perfect movie for a girls-night-in or to make your boyfriend watch if you want him to break up with you. So what are you waiting for?! You can watch it at random times on ABC Family, as it has apparently made a comeback and is now being shown regularly on television, buy it off of Amazon for like four bucks, or watch the entire movie in surprisingly good quality on YouTube.  (If you click that YouTube link, within the first three minutes you’ll see “I love to dance”.)  If you’re still not sold, click here to watch the Dance TV audition scene. Classic.

I’m glad you guys have a new favorite movie. Have a great weekend!

Celebrity (Like the NSYNC Album but Not)

Sometimes, when you’re a pop culture-obsessed girl like me, you go to great lengths to meet celebrities.  Whether they’re A-list or D-list, I am beyond thrilled to be able to say I’ve met someone famous. Now, please don’t think that I mean this in a creepy/stalker kind of way. It’s just that I love pop culture and for some reason, I tend to really invest some thought and time into the lives of famous people. I’d like to think that I’d be the kind of person a celebrity would meet and think, “That person isn’t crazy! In fact, I think she and I could be great friends”.  I just love the hear the latest entertainment news and can’t help but stay up-to-date on what is happening in their lives. Yes, it can be embarrassing, like the fact that I know Britney Spear’s birthday (December 2nd) or that I can name Melanie Brown aka Mel B. aka Scary Spice’s birthplace (Leeds, England). Yeah, I hate myself.

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Fearless Tour: Taylor Swift in Lexington, KY. I’m going to be honest, I’m not sure if I took this picture or if I stole this from one of my friends.

Sometimes, celebrity sightings are just that- a brief visual and then it’s over, like the time my sister, Courtney, Mel and I saw Usher at a restaurant in Los Angeles or the time we saw Kendall Jenner (of Kardashian fame) Segway herself into their Dash clothing boutique in Calabasas. I was way too excited to see a 14-year-old girl walk- excuse me, Segway– into a clothing store. Luckily, in both of those situations, we remained calm and did nothing to embarrass ourselves. On the other side of the spectrum is the desperation with which Mel, my good friend Krysti and I attempted to meet Taylor Swift. We slaved over creative, glitter-covered posters and stood outside of Rupp Arena hoping to catch a glimpse of Taylor, win a meet-and-greet pass, or floor tickets. None of those things happened, as one of Taylor’s assistants decided to give the floor tickets to the groups that stood to the left and right of us. Life can be so cruel.

There are other times when things go almost perfectly, like the time I saw Tyler Hilton perform at Metro in Chicago. He was the opening act and I couldn’t have given a flying fart in space (props to the classic film What a Girl Wants starring pre-crazy Amanda Bynes and Colin Firth for that saying) about the headlining band.

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The look of love

Tyler is amazingly talented and has an incredibly sexy voice and I was/am a fan of his music.  (He also had an acting stint on One Tree Hill, among other things.) He did a meet-and-greet after his set and NO JOKE, you guys, his security guy cut the line off RIGHT before me. I was really nice about it but on the inside I was flipping my shit. As it turns out, nice guys/girls do finish first because as Tyler walked out the door, my brother and I happened to be behind him. I started a conversation with him that I barely remember because I must have blacked out, but I do remember him being really nice and asking my name.  I was in love. Then the security guard led us to a roped-off area and let us take pictures with Tyler. As Courtney Robertson once said, “WINNING!”

But then sometimes, you work at a Starbucks in Lexington, KY, and don’t think for a second you’d ever meet a famous person there. Then, when trying to be friendly,  you tell a customer she “looks like that girl from Paramore” and she tells you that your bangs look really cute on you (see: straight-across bangs, previous entry) and her boyfriend’s mom hands you some cash as a tip because “you’re so cute”. Then it turns out that that girl actually was Hayley Williams of Paramore and you lay on your couch that night wondering why things like this happen to you. Thank you, Chad Gilbert‘s mom for making me feel less stupid with a lovely tip. I am the only exception.

Celebrity Look-Alikes

There was a time in my life, three years ago, when I had straight-across bangs. I cut them that way accidentally (I was trying to trim my side bangs as I had a million times before and somehow ended up cutting them wrong) but it was a pretty good look for me, surprisingly enough. During that time, I was told many times that I resembled Zooey Deschanel- indie darling, the “she” of the band She & Him, and current star of the TV show New Girl. I was obviously more than okay with the comparison, since Zooey is adorable. My friend Billy (who was a new friend at the time) went as far as taking a picture of me to send to his friends as his “proof of knowing Zooey Deschanel”.

So one day, when it popped up on my Facebook and Instagram that everyone was using a “Celebrity Look-Alike” app, I knew I had to get in on that. Many of my friends had gotten some random look-alikes, but I was convinced that since I CLEARLY resembled Zooey, I would absolutely get her! So I uploaded a picture of myself onto the app and waited while it ran the facial recognition. I just couldn’t wait to post my result to my various social media platforms, announcing to the world that yes, I DO look like Zooey Deschanel.  (Yes, I fully recognized that the resemblance only came from the bangs but let me have this moment, people.)

The app finished loading and I looked at the screen. My jaw dropped in horror.

There, staring back at me, was my celebrity look-alike.

Jennifer Love Hewitt.

No, not hot, in-the-prime-of-her-career JLH of the late 90’s. Ghost Whisperer Jennifer?  Not exactly.  What about the current hot J. Love of the bizarre Client List?  Again, I say nay.

My celebrity look-alike was pre-Party of Five Jennifer Love Hewitt.  14-year-old Jennifer Love Hewitt.  IN A BACKWARDS HAT.

My life is a joke.

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SPARK: A Playlist for Monday

My good friend, Jeff, introduced me to the awesomeness that is 8 Tracks.  Similar to Songza, 8 Tracks provides the user with playists that fit a bevy of moods, vibes, and activities.  With thousands of user-created playists, you could listen to music on here all day and never get bored. I love that I can browse and favorite the ones I like. There’s a playlist for every mood and genre- one of my favorite categories is dedicated to mashups of indie rock and rap/hip hop.  Love it.

photo(3)Click here to listen to “Sparks”

If you were to look at my “favorites” on 8 Tracks, you would see the many playlists sent to me by Jeff, most of which are electronic/house/club music that helps us imagine being at a beach party in Miami or Cancun. I listen to those playlists when I want to be mentally transported to a different place. This playlist, on the other hand, is really chill and the perfect way to start off your week. (Try to move past the fact that the first song is “Banana Pancakes” by Jack Johnson…if you’re like me and you find that off-putting, I promise that the rest of the list is worth listening to!) While I enjoy creating playlists, I typically prefer to listen to ones other people make, like this one entitled “Sparks”.

Happy Monday! xx

Friday Faves

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Sweater Weather- The Neighborhood

THIS WEEK’S:

Favorite accessory: Anything from Stella & Dot! I love all of their jewelry, from their pretty rings to their funky bracelets to their statement necklaces. I own all the pieces I linked and I’m obsessed! Available to purchase here through my mom, who is an S&D stylist!

Favorite clothing item: I just purchased this sweatshirt/jean jacket from American Eagle and I wore it earlier this week when the weather was a little cooler. I can already tell that it’s going to be a great staple and my go-to jacket for fall. Play it like I did and wait until you have a coupon to buy it!  🙂

Favorite song: I first heard “Sweater Weather” by the Neighbourhood a few months ago and was instantly obsessed. I listened to it on repeat for a solid month. I rediscovered my love of this song this week and again, have been listening to it nonstop.  It’s the perfect song for the end of summer/beginning of fall.

Favorite beauty product: Guys, this stuff should be considered a national treasure. Lush Sea Spray is DA BOMB.  It gives your hair awesome texture and volume, as well as the much-coveted “beach waves”, like you just stepped out of the ocean looking all sultry and goddess-y and a little wild. Plus it smells amazing! Everytime I spray it in my hair, I feel like I’m being transported to the beaches of Mexico. Ahhhh. Comparable to Bumble & Bumble’s Surf Spray, Lush’s spray is the same quality for half the price!

Favorite book:  “Everything Beautiful Came After” by Simon Van Booy already has my rapt attention and I’m only a few chapters in. Beautifully written, the story largely takes place in Greece and focuses on its three main characters, Rebecca, George, and Henry, their love stories, and the ways grief is tied to fate. I don’t want to put it down!

It’s Friiiiiday! Enjoy the faves and have a great weekend! xx

You, Me and Scientology

There are many things in life that I speak enthusiastically and get really excited about.  The list is embarrassingly long and includes everything from television shows to my favorite breakfast foods to celebrities.  (Seriously, don’t get me started on why I love Selena Gomez.  Embarrassant.)  Something that ranks pretty high on this list?  Costumes!

As I’ve grown into full-blown adulthood, I’ve come to the sad realization that the opportunities to wear a great costume are few and far between. As much as I’d like to throw my own masquerade ball, that seems to only be done well when you are a character on Gossip Girl and you have a lot of spare time on your hands, so I’m left to think back on the costume-wearing “glory days” of university.  In college, my best friends (Mel, Drea, Erin) and I wore costumes to a bevy of events throughout our four years.  Whether it was matching sweatsuits to compete in an academic “Brain Bowl” or Peter Pan-themed Halloween costumes, our masquerade game was on point.

One problem that the four of us share is that we tend to over-commit to things, especially Mel and I. The most hilarious and horrifying example of this took place during our senior year of college, when we heard about an 80’s-themed party at a bar in Lexington. Now, to a reasonable person, “80’s theme” means a cute, 80’s style outfit- leggings, an off-the-shoulder top, teased hair, big earrings.  To us, it meant we were going dressed as the cast of Saved By the Bell.  Long story short, we painstakingly picked outfits suited to our “characters”, used an entire can of hairspray, and did a drive-by of the bar…….only to see we were the ONLY ones dressed in costume.  Appalled at everyone’s lack of enthusiasm and our own stupidity, we stopped by a friends apartment to alter our outfits so we could show ourselves in public.  It was harder than it sounds, since Erin was dressed like Zach Morris, complete with slicked-back hair.

The best costume party of my life also occurred during my senior year of college.  Two of my close friends, Olivia and Marie-Claire, had summer birthdays and decided to have a birthday party before the spring semester ended- a “world religion”-themed party. Never in my life have I seen people be as committed to their costume as I usually am.  That’s what’s so great about college- you meet people who not only “get” you, but people who embrace your outrageous-ness with some of their own. Somehow, everyone who showed up to that party managed to represent a different religion or belief.  It was inappropriate and completely politically incorrect and it was AWESOME.  There was even someone who came as Jim Jones and wore a Kool-Aid shirt.  photo(5)Erin was a Mormon, Micah represented New Age, Matt was a Shaker…and Drea, Mel and I were dressed in what I consider to be our “pièce de résistance”- representing Scientology, we came as Tom, Katie, and Suri Cruise.  We did research on the belief so we could preach it to everyone else (mainly just inviting all of them to “headquarters”, which is rumored to be a yacht in the middle of an ocean) and stayed in character the whole night. Drea spent a significant amount of the night having a crazy look in her eye and jumping on couches and I was reminded again of why they are my best friends. As I reminisced about that party today, I went on Facebook and looked at the photo album Olivia had uploaded after it was over. I was laughing so hard as I looked at everyone’s costumes and remembered how funny that night had been. Guys, I appreciate your enthusiasm. I need to start thinking of the next opportunity to have a themed party…and if anyone is hosting one- I’m your girl.