Category Archives: Fashion

New Year, New Resolutions

It is finally that time of year. Time to set my goals for 2012 and then try to keep up with them until 2013. I am very excited about my 2012 goals, as the 2011 goals I set for myself were either met or exceeded. I had a lot of fun trying to meet the goals and I felt that I challenged myself continually throughout the year. This year, I have tried to choose a list of goals based on feedback from friends, family and my readers. I have also taken into account the amount of time each goal will take and the effort I will have to expend to complete it.

*drumroll*

My 2012 Goals 

Relationship goals:

Strengthen my personal relationships by spending more time with those I care about. 

This may not seem like that difficult of a goal, but you have to keep in mind that I only have one family member in California, relatively few friends because of the hours I work each week, and a very demanding job. I am hoping that by the end of 2012, I will have solidified my relationship to a certain significant other, made a few close friends, and have a small circle of acquaintances with whom I can have some fun.

Write more letters, thank you notes and emails.

This is one of those goals I always mean to make myself do. Ever since university, I have tried to write more thank you notes and letters, but I always seem to come up short. However, I have written a few emails this year and I plan to keep that up. My goal is to write an email (outside of work) each day. I would like to email my grandmother, mother, father, brothers and friends at least once a week. My family alone will be 6 days!

Take a real vacation with someone.

“Real vacation” does not include: going home to see family for a holiday, traveling for a family emergency, traveling for a work-related reason or medical conference. I will only consider it a vacation if I am traveling solely for relaxing and spending time with my travel companion.

Preferable Destinations: Seychelles,  Dominican Republic, Toronto, Spain, London, Belize

Personal Goals:

– Finish my novel

Just last year I started a novel (no I’m not going to post it on this blog 🙂 ). I wanted to take part in NaNoWriMo, but then I had to travel/get sick/deal with personal issues for most of November and was unable to write at all. I only got around to writing about 10, 000 out of 50,000 words. Will I finish my novel in 2012? Maybe not, but I will try to write for a bit each week.

Learn to sew

I have wanted to learn to sew for some time now. I always see these amazing dresses/skirts and when I ask where they got the dress I get the, “Oh, I made this!,” response. I need to buy a sewing machine and convert the “cats room” into a sewing room. I welcome suggestions on where to buy fabrics in LA/Hermosa, what sewing machine I need to buy and what the best way to learn is (online tutorials, sewing books, classes) .

Read 20 books in 2012

In 2011, I read 30 books. I thought about upping the ante to 40, but then I remembered I want to have a life outside of work. I have decided to keep the goal of reading a set number of books, but I want to read less. I would really like to read the Harry Potter series, but only if I can get them on my Nook.

Make a substantial blog post two (2) times a week or a small post three (3) times a week.

I am looking forward to blogging in the new year! I have some posts I am working on (mostly about my travels), but they are fairly time intensive. I will be posting more often, around 2-3 times a week and I would love suggestions! Anything that you would be interested in me blogging about, I am open to it! 

Goals to Continue

Take more cooking courses (Persian, Latin American, Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Spanish)

I enjoyed this goal immensely. I was able to sign up for a few cooking courses and it was a blast! I would like to cook through a few classic cookbooks for each type of cuisine, while also supplementing my cooking with some outside classes.

Run 50 miles a week following Runners World MPW Target Goals or 2700 miles for the year. Try for 3000 miles if possible!

Even though this goal was difficult to keep up with in 2011 (due to work, travel or illness), I loved the way I felt after completing the required 50 miles a week. This year I am shooting for 3000 miles, but hitting 2700 or 2600 would be acceptable. If I can squeeze a few races or marathons in, I will definitely try!

Complete 1-2 detox plans over the course of 2012

This goal was actually a lot of fun for me. I scheduled both of my detoxes after holidays, in hopes that I could rid my system of the toxins I built up eating all that holiday fare. This year, I plan on trying to get in two (2) detoxes, but one (1) detox over the summer will work!

I am very pleased with my 2012 goals. I have already started a few of my goals and will keep everyone updated as I complete or struggle with each one.

Question(s): Have you decided to set goals for yourself in 2012? If so, what are they? Do you have suggestions to help me complete any of the above goals? Would you like to challenge me to complete another goal (I am up for some challenging!)?

Happy New Year!

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The Essentials

While I was packing to head home (to Missouri) for the holidays, I had an idea for a post! I was pulling cold weather clothing to get me through the next few days and I realized that I have always adhered to the “10 core items that everyone should own” rule. Even though I have a ton of clothes, I regularly update what I consider my “core.”

What do I consider the core clothing items every woman should own?

1.  LBD, Little Black Dress. What style of LBD? That is really up to your body type, though you should pick something classic. Don’t choose a dress with too many “extras” or “add-on’s.” You want chic, simple and classic. You should look at your LBD as an investment piece, so you can justify spending a little more to get a high-quality garment. This dress will also be worn many times, so you should have it professionally dry-cleaned and store it in a garment bag to help it last longer.

2. Ballet Flats. I love heels as much as anyone, but every once in a while you need to tone down the sexy to casual romance. Ballet flats are a comfortable alternative to heels and they can sometimes make the outfit. I always try to keep a pair of city flats in my purse/car, should I need an emergency pair. There have been a few times where I have gone out with friends and wished I could trade shoes by nights end. Owning several pair of flats is preferable and though there are a few colors you should invest in a good pair of black and brown flats. Make sure the flats are comfortable, don’t rub your foot raw and have decent support.

3. Tote. I have so many totes I don’t even know where to begin. I have totes for the farmers market, totes for the grocery store, totes for the pool/gym and then totes that I use when traveling. They are incredibly handy and can definitely show off your sense of style. Pick a statement bag, nothing too trendy. You will carry this tote for many years. I prefer Hunter Boot totes for “heavy-duty” travel or Lanvin for weekends. Both make fabulous totes!

4. Black Pumps. Louboutin. That’s really all you need to know. Expensive? Yes. Worth it? Hell yes. They will treat your feet so well and you will be thankful you spared no expensive on them.

5. Flattering skirt. Just like the LBD, you need a skirt that flatters your body. The skirt that you buy needs to be comfortable, classic and you have to be able to dress it up or down. I have always adored fall skirts or high-waisted pencil skirts, but you have to make sure that you feel comfortable with the fit and the length.

6. Fantastic bra. You don’t realize how much you need one until you find the right one. I highly suggest going to a place that properly fits you for a bra. I don’t mean Victoria’s Secret either. Though you can find bras there that are decently made, you should really be looking at high-end stores. What you are purchasing is the foundation of your wardrobe. If your bra is uncomfortable, you are uncomfortable. Don’t suffer through the day because you’re wearing the wrong size!

7. Jeans. A great pair of jeans can make you feel like you can take on the world. Jeans that make your butt look amazing, slim your legs and tuck in your tummy are the ideal. The only way to find the correct pair of jeans is to try on as many brands as you can. If you go into a store that sells jeans, try on your size. Once you have them on. Bend over, squat down, sit, walk around. Get a feel for how those jeans are going to look while you’re being active. Though you should definitely have several pairs of jeans, you should have that one brand that you always know will fit you perfectly. I love Citizens of Humanity because they don’t ever have the dreaded gap and they always make my butt look good!

8. Cashmere sweater. Splurge on a nice sweater. I always like white, cable knit cashmere. It is soft, warm and it envelopes you. It is one of the most comforting items of clothing in your closet. You should choose the a style of sweater that you will feel best in. Whether it is a cardigan, oversized, fitted or buttoned sweater, it should be something you still feel beautiful in.

9. Trench coat/cold weather coat. Depending on where you live, you should invest in a nice coat. If you can get away with a trench coat, then buy one that will look good over a dress or pants. Heavier coats are more difficult, as you will need to find something that isn’t too bulky, but will also be warm. I have always adored Burberry and even though they are asininely expensive, their jackets are classics. Pair your jacket with a favourite scarf and it won’t even matter what you have on underneath!

10. Tailored dress pants. I feel like women do not afford themselves the same luxury as men. Even though men have their shirts, pants, and jackets tailored, I rarely talk to a woman who says the same. After I had my first pair of dress pants tailored, I was hooked. Since then I have taken pretty much all of my core pieces to a tailor for customization!

The idea is to spend a lot initially and then accessorize, accessorize, accessorize. You can build a fantastic wardrobe out of just a few major pieces and if you feel the need to practice, hop on Polyvore and just see how many outfits you can create using a single piece from the list above.

Happy shopping!

Question(s): What are your essentials? Do you agree with the items in the list above?