All my little Chickadees

Sometimes, death sucker punches you in the throat- when you least expect it.
Sometimes, it comes slow, like hot lava burning through you until there is nothing left.
And when you’re lucky- sometimes, death comes with Champagne and the golden strings of heaven.

My grandma became very sick around Thanksgiving and was rushed to the hospital. She has not come home. She won’t be coming home to a house of brick and mortar. She will have a homecoming though, I imagine a beautiful one at that.

In her last days my family has been lucky enough to spend some moments with her which I know none of us will soon forget. And all I can keep thinking is one thought;  “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”

You see my grams made it clear- she is not afraid. She is ready.

She calls this part of her life ‘The Great Crash’ just like any good woman with a sense of humor would. She has spent her last days drinking Champagne one spoonful at a time, like any good woman with class and zest for life would.
And there is something perfectly sweet about all of this. Something that reminds me- while I am very sad that I will be missing someone who taught me so much, and was such a force in my family- death has not won this.

I have learned the fundamentals of shopping from her- and I do it well, because of her.
She has taught me how to be completely yourself in such a way that is both gentle and strong.
She has tact unlike anyone I have seen. Oliver Wilde once said; “Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way they look forward to the trip.” She had that….when she wanted to. Other times, she’d just tell ya right where to go- and give you the shortcut.

I don’t know how she has lived this long, and until yesterday I didn’t understand why she was holding on. She is being held together by golden strings of heaven- that’s the only way I could explain how she’s made it this far. And if I’m perceiving all of this right- she’s holding on to prepare us. Making sure we’re taking in how to go out in style. Making sure we all get together and drink Champagne in her honor.

And so, in her dying moments I will not cry because I will never see her again, I will cry because for a short time I will miss her.  And the first thing I will do when I see her again- is make a toast in her honor, for teaching us courage in the last moments, and how to go out like any good woman would- with a joke on her lips, and a glass of champagne in her hand- confident in what awaits her.

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On Reaping What You Sow

Maybe I don’t believe in Karma in the traditional sense- after all, I’m not Buddhist or yogi. But maybe I have a little more of a Farmer’s spirit about me- which absolutely has me believe that you reap what you sow, with an exactness that is both unsettling and magical. There’s something about (fill in the blank- God, The Universe, whatever) that likes to ever so gently remind you what you plant is what will grow.

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“My experience shows that those who plant trouble and cultivate evil will harvest the same.” #TheBible (hahahaaha, I can’t even get over how funny I find that right now)

I admire the Mother Teresa’s, Nelson Mandela’s, Jesus, and the like- who give and give and give (read love, inspire, be kind, etc.)- but find no pain, and no loss in that. There is something very rare about a person who gives beyond the point of reason. Mother Teresa once said; “I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.” You reap what you sow.

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And then there are those who are so bitter and guilt ridden and stubborn the whole world is their enemy. They are a martyr at the hands of every person they come in contact with. Once the victim, always the victim. You reap what you sow.

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There’s a theory in psychology called ‘Confirmation Bias’ in which you believe something, and you only recognize evidence which supports that theory. I.E.- you always hit the red lights when you’re in a hurry. Or every time you eat spaghetti you get heartburn. Never remembering that time when 4 of your 7 lights where green, or when you scarfed that plate of pasta on your lunch break last week and felt fine after (this may, or may not be what I’m doing right now).

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Confirmation Bias is one of my favorite psychological theories because I think it’s applicable in an extensive amount of situations- and it’s pretty damn obvious funny too.

Confirmation Bias tells the giver/lover/inspirer their giving/loving/inspiring matters because they will only look for information that tells them that- they only find the wins. There is no room for doubt, negativity, or self-pity; they got shit to do. They reap what they sow.
PS- What they do does matter.

Confirmation Bias tells the bitter/broken/angry person their pain matters more than the next guy’s because they didn’t deserve it. That somehow, they bear no responsibility to the situation or how they feel from it because, well damn it – it’s just not their fault. And their evidence supports that because they will not see anything else. Not the person who remained to love them, or the person who tried to apologize, the person who has taken far more sub-par treatment from them than necessary. They reap what they sow.
PS- What they do does matter….to them.

 

Choose to live in such a way that your confirmation bias only shows you the good shit. Cheers.

Cuz whats a birthday without a natural disaster?!

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Two weeks ago I surprised my husband with a birthday trip to Napa. Like surprised him all the way up until he got to the airport (and he was still confused on the four hour flight). It was great (except I didn’t pack the man’s computer and he had some work to finish….oops).

Why do people’s voices always sound so weird recorded? Just me..? Okay…

Our first stop was the Oxbow Market in downtown Napa (very similar to Chicago’s French Market but a bit smaller). We had lunch at Hog Island Oyster Co. and I had the best grilled cheese I’ve ever had in my life (I don’t do oysters- but Adam does). Seriously though, the grilled cheese- unreal, and so good I forgot to take a photo.

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We took it easy that night, enjoyed the sights of downtown Napa, had a nice dinner and turned in early! Had to get our beauty rest for the wineries!

We only visited a few- Castello di Amorasa - which took 14 years to build and is absolutely unreal. If you plan on visiting go early because the place is like the Six Flags of Napa.

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Just down the road from there we stopped at Twomey a boutique winery and tasting room that started with a focus on Merlot, but actually has a kick ass selection of Pinot Noir and an awesome Sauvignon Blanc. This was my favorite stop. We then headed up to a few more tasting rooms in Calistoga,  W. H. Smith was the first, and sadly I cannot recall the name of the second one. At W.H. the tasting room manager was from Chicago and shared my love for Portillo’s and hate for Jay Cutler- so we got along real well! 

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We went to dinner at Morimoto- which I did not enjoy, but Adam did. Then this is where the adventure of the trip really begins because another thing happened two weeks ago in Napa besides our arrival…

The Napa area had one of the worst earthquakes it’s had in 25 years. Yes, the one weekend of the year I decide to surprise my husband with a trip to Napa there’s the worst earthquake they’ve had in my entire lifetime. It. was.an.experience.

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I’m fairly sure that “earth quake” is the most literal and logical of names for this sort of natural disaster. I mean, ‘Tsunami’ what is that? It sounds like some sort of Asian deli meat. Hurricane? A brightly colored adult beverage that will likely make you puke in about 20 minutes just from the sheer amount of sugar in it. Tornado? Um…Wizard of Oz?

But earth quake? 100% on point in the naming category. When it’s 3:20 in the morning and the world starts shaking- you wake up thinking the worlds ending. Shit.is.cray.

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Luckily, no one in the place we were staying was harmed. Although the poor little B&B took some serious injury. As seasoned earth quake survivors we decided to continue our trip in San Francisco because downtown Napa was torn up from the floor up- and I’m not just using that as a cliche….

The faces of earth quake survivors on 3 hours of sleep and a few cocktails...
The faces of earth quake survivors on 3 hours of sleep and a few cocktails…

We spent a good chunk of our afternoon at Jack’s Cannery  drinking beers and reliving our earth quake experience. I think that’s what you’re supposed to do after an earth quake…
The next morning was our flight out and after all the excitement of the night before we were ready for bed pretty early.

However, next time you’re in San Fran have breakfast at Sears -the best Denver Omelet I’ve ever had.

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Photo Cred: Adam Flikkema/Flik Productions

The last surprise of the birthday weekend was a card I customized our dog Griffin customized (Yes, we’re those people who give each other cards from their pet…) on Treat’s website.  Treat is a division of Shutterfly specializing in custom cards, which you can send via email or snail mail. Griffin opted for the snail mail route- so there was a lovely card waiting for his master when he came home from his birthday trip. Griffin loved the customization process as it was easy, user friendly, and gave you lots of options.  I mean if a dog could do it, you’re good to go! This is what he chose:

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Griffin has a great sense of humor.

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It also seems as if Griffin has some blackmail material on his master….

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Yup. That’s a picture of Adam in a party hat with his tongue out. If you’d like to see it enlarged you can find it on my instagram account.

And just to finish this photo journalistic entry off right- these are the faces of two very tired travelers at 1:30 AM on public transit home;  after a weekend of little sleep, lots of wine, and even more adventure.

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Cheers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DIY

DIY the common acronym for, well, ‘Do(ing) It Yourself’ has become immensely popular with sites like Pinterest and all the various blogs out there. However, they are not the only ones encouraging you to take matters into your own hands. Yesterday, the Supreme Court made a ruling on whether or not Hobby Lobby should have to comply with the full extent of Obamacare and supply all types of birth control. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby- leaving you to find certain birth control coverage yourself.

Opinions on both sides of the spectrum take form in comics from various artists. Found by a Google search of "hobby lobby cartoons".
Opinions on both sides of the spectrum take form in comics from various artists. Found by doing a Google search of “hobby lobby cartoons”.

I’m going to start with what was my closing paragraph because I think it makes a good disclaimer before you start reading the rest of this. So here goes: These opinions aren’t God’s- they’re mine. They are what I think, and where I am in my faith. They are what I think is right, and how I interpret the Bible- years and years after it’s writing- and the invention of birth control. I think God didn’t comment on every single hot topic that would come up in the future because he gave us enough sense, and the ability to discern what’s right- and that should be enough. And, just like you and I have the choice to work at Hobby Lobby or not based on their convictions, and they have a choice of whether to offer certain types birth control as a benefit based on their convictions. They also have a choice on how literally they will take the Bible, and how they will portray it. Just as much as I do- and this is my belief.

I have mixed feelings on the situation. I love Hobby Lobby, let me just get that out there. You send me in there with lots of time and dangerous things happen. I come out as the crazy craft lady.
However, on a broader & larger scale I feel conflicted.

I think any company, especially a family owned one should be able to hold and express their views- even or especially when it comes down to how they conduct their business. I don’t like going to Wal-Mart because I have heard of (hearsay- I have not done extensive research so please don’t try to recite 100 facts to me about how great they are- I can’t do the same in return) the negative effects it has on the economy, it’s workers, and the like. However, I’m not trying to bust down the Walton’s door to tell them they should be doing a better job. I simply do not shop there. I think the free market should be respected, and part of that falls into a company choosing how they conduct their business. Except for the common set of standards (i.e. not ripping people off, doing illegal things, monopoly, etc.)- the government shouldn’t be able to control all aspects of a company. You wouldn’t walk into a vegan restaurant and order a bacon cheeseburger and demand they serve it to you because it’s your right to eat meat. Just like you probably wouldn’t go into Hobby Lobby for a job if you want certain types of birth control coverage because it’s your right. I don’t think the decision of how Hobby Lobby chooses to run their company should specifically be based on a religious argument- but also an argument of this- they are an independent company that the government should not be able to enforce or control them (unless of course they are doing the things I listed above and being scammy).

HOWEVER (again). I take issue with Hobby Lobby and this whole debate, long before it turns into a Supreme Court case and sociological fodder for every feminist and church goer alike. I hesitate to say I am a Christian because I think that that is a term which has been sullied by things like this. But I am. I believe in God, and heaven, and hell, and sins, and forgiveness. I also believe God gave us some sense, and logic, and reasoning to employ- not just to have. YES, the Bible does say “Go forth and multiply...” however, if you read it within context- God is saying that in the Garden of Eden (a place of perfection, at this point) as a blessing. In the very next verse he is listing off all the provisions the Garden of Eden has for them. They weren’t exactly having to worry about how to pay the electric bill. If we continue reading Eve goes and makes a mess of things, and Adam isn’t much help and then world changes from there. Part of that change is the fact that they now have to work, the world is no longer a perfect place, and Eve basically cursed all us ladies with periods and menopause and all things gross and awkward about being a woman (at least I’m blaming her for it). However, God still wants them to multiply- otherwise all His handiwork would end there.

So now, lots and lots of years later- we have fancy magic that can prevent us from having children when we are not prepared because we live in an imperfect world and can’t just pop out 96 kids at any time like the Duggars. I believe this is where God expects us to use some sense. If you can barely afford to feed yourself- probably don’t have kids. If you know you are too impatient, immature, and selfish to have kids- probably don’t have kids. At least not yet. While Hobby Lobby isn’t trying to ban all birth control- they are trying to ban some in the name of Christianity and classic values. I do not think abortion and birth control are the same thing. I do not think the morning after pill is an abortion. I do not think birth control is a sin. This being said, it pains me to see a company with such exposure, standing behind faith and Christianity, take the national spotlight and do a poor job at explaining the differences between those things.

Ultimately- my beef isn’t about why or if they should or should not have to pay for specific types of birth control. If you are a person that is trying to family plan or simply not trying to get pregnant, note the fact that Hobby Lobby probably isn’t the place for you to be working. You have a choice, choose to work somewhere else. I don’t think the solution is forcing a group or company to do or not do something. They, just like you should be afforded a choice. Yours is if you want to work there, and theirs is the extent of the benefits they want to offer.

This ultimately, is an argument that opens a bunch of debate because Hobby Lobby doesn’t want to provide the morning after pill and IUD’s (for those of you who don’t know the differences between these things and ‘the pill’ it’s simply that they prevent pregnancy after an egg is fertilized, where the pill prevents eggs from being fertilized in the first place). So- this then opens the argument- when is a person a person- and that is simply an argument this post doesn’t have time to address. I will simply reiterate what I said above: I do not think abortion and birth control are the same thing. I do not think the morning after pill is an abortion. I do not think birth control is a sin.

In the end, I think people are getting all sorts of worked up over a company “who won’t offer birth control”- which isn’t really the case. I myself, had to dig a little deeper to get to the bottom of things, because after seeing all these tweets about women’s rights being taken away, I was a little fired up. After taking a closer look- women’s right’s are there just as much as the Green’s rights.

 

The good news news

I have two thoughts today.
First, I’m so tired of seeing things like this on the internet:

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That is NOT a beauty hack- that’s food or what I would call a “non-stick hack”. Don’t put food on your body just because it contains coconut/coconut oil (unless you plan on laying in the sun and baking a batch of brownies on yourself- I don’t wanna hear about it). It’s food, you put it in your mouth- and not to do this trendy ‘oil pulling’ nonsense. STOP freaking out over this stuff. It’s weird. #endrant


Now in other news. I always complain about how ‘the news’ is always ‘bad news’- so in honor of the first Friday of summer- I present you with ‘the good news news’. My pick of some of the week’s top heartwarming, happy news stories.

First up, an actress I so much love. Amy Adams was flying from Detroit to LA today (yes, I’m cutting edge over here- fresh off the press news right here). Anyways, she noticed a soldier sitting in coach and gave up her first class seat for him. I am always such a sucker for those soldiers returning from deployment or getting a standing O at the airport type stories so this was right up my alley. For the full story click here.

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Second: Some of you may recall the story from a few months back about the MSU Basketball player Adreian Payne who made friends with a little girl named Lacey Holsworth, a little MSU fan who was suffering from a very serious form of cancer. She attended many of his games, he invited her to his senior night, and she even cut the nets down when MSU won the Big Ten. She died shortly after that. The story in itself is a sad- but incredibly moving and you can’t help but smile when you see that little girl’s face. However, last night at the NBA draft- the suit Adreian wore was commemorative of Lacey. With a pink lining, and her name embroidered into it. Even after her passing, he is honoring her memory. For more on this story, click the links.

NBA: NBA Draft

On Monday, a 91 year old WWII vet graduated high school because she had dropped out to serve in the war. Talk about dedication!

There’s speculation around Cristiano Ronaldo’s hairstyle during the World Cup games- it was/wasn’t for a young fan who had a surgery scar on his head. But regardless of that (while I’d like to think it’s true) Ronaldo has offered to pay for one of the boy’s surgeries which costs somewhere in the neighborhood of $70k. So haircut tribute or not, I call it a win.

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This was last week- but I still like the story so I’m going with it. An ex-felon who served 10 years in prison for producing cocaine saved a baby! A 15 month old girl crawled 300 yards from her home (how does THAT happen I want to know…but this is good news news, so I’ll stay focused). That little nugget was just about to crawl on the expressway when Bryant Collins scooped her up, and played her some gospel music until the police came.  Hip hip hooray for saving babies and not making drugs!!!

And there’s your good news news for the week! Happy Friday!!

 

#TBT

I figured today on the blog we could do a little installment of ‘Throwback Thursday’. Where I tell you some embarrassing and silly stuff about me in times past.

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Let’s begin with this:

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Yup- that’s me. In my favorite cat sweater. Apparently, back in the day somewhere I used to like cats. Like them so much so, I wanted them on my sweaters. With polka dots and glitter bling. You’re jealous- I know.

Here’s some more #tbt stuff for you:

  • I know I mentioned this somewhere on here before- but I used to think it was called ‘Noah’s Zark’. And the ‘Heimlich Remover’ (ps- this makes sense, you are REMOVING something after all, hopefully you are anyways).
  • My first CD was C+C Music Factory, which my sister bribed me to do her chores for.
  • I used to watch Bob Ross on channel 11 after cartoons ended, and if you say you didn’t ever do this you’re a liar.

mistake lets make them birds

  • I saw ‘Scream’ and ‘Copycat’ when I was too young and would always check under bathroom stalls in public bathrooms for bathroom creepers. I may or may not still do this from time to time. 
  • My OLDER sister used to break into my diary and threaten that she was going to tell my crushes I liked them. I’m pretty sure this was supposed to be my job…
  • All of my older sisters also told me I was adopted. I would then go ask my dad and he would say I wasn’t. I’d go back to them all smug- ‘Dad told me the truth- I know I’m not adopted’. To which they would respond; “He just doesn’t want to tell you the truth so your feelings won’t be hurt”. Identity crisis ensued.
  • I used to beg, plead, and demand that the dentist give me braces because I thought they were so cool.
  • My first AIM screen name was ~*princessgrl31*~ (OHHH YEA- I’m contemplating going back to that one).
  • I read the entire Nancy Drew series. Forget that Babysitter’s Club nonsense. I had real problems to solve. Missing jewels n’ shit.
  • My dad used to tell me aliens ‘laid their eggs’ in asphalt chunks that broke off the side of the road. He would point to tiny pebbles and tell me if I picked them out and saved them, they would hatch and I would have  a baby alien. He called them ‘Jujubabies’. After about 3 weeks of watching these damn pebbles in a jar I asked him why they hadn’t hatched yet and he told me to keep waiting. GOD I WAS SO GULLIBLE.

That’s it for this installment of #tbt.

Let’s hear some of your Throwback moments- tell me I was not the only paranoid, gullible, “adopted” child!

Busy Busy Bee

So hey, it was 70+ degrees on Saturday and now there’s snow on the ground. That’s pretty cool.

NOT.

Seriously Mother Nature has no regard for my emotions. Like at all. I can’t do this anymore. Even my snow scraper gave up on winter this morning.

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Now, for me to explain my absence on this here blog. I have been seriously researching going back to school to further my education student loan debt.  Which has taken up a lot more of my time than I would have liked. Also, it’s my ‘busy’ time of year at work which between both of those things makes my days actually full at work.

I promise to try to be a better blogger from here!

I thought today I would talk about those books I told you I would review back in, oh you know- DECEMBER. Let me explain- it took me much longer to get through them than I’d like to admit and I returned some before even finishing. *SHAME ON ME* (I know).

Numero Uno- The Gods of Gotham- It was good. I’d give it 3.5 of 5 stars. It was long, and very detailed- ideal for the history buffs out there. What I gathered from the introduction is the author did a lot of historical research for the book- down to geographical layouts of New York at the time, and the slang which was used. The story was intriguing and well written- although maybe dragged on a little in places. When I explained the story to my husband he mentioned that it seemed similar to the movie Gangs of New York- which in a lot of ways it was. If you’re into history and like to have all the details and like a good mystery this one’s for you.

Let’s Pretend This Never HappenedI read about 1.5 chapters and had to return it. I read The Bloggess online and she’s really funny. But the book was too scattered for me. It jumped from thought to thought and was just too much to keep up with. Maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for it, but I just couldn’t get into it. I did laugh out  loud a couple times though- so there’s that. Maybe I’ll try it as like a vacation beach read or something.

Banished: Surviving My Years in the Westboro Baptist ChurchI liked this book a lot. I haven’t read many Memoir type books but this one was good. It was written in a conversational tone, without making things too casual. You definitely get emotionally involved (unless you have no soul-sort of just kidding) in what’s going on and by the end if you’re like me- you might bawl a bit.

Girls in White DressesI also returned this one (We’re 2 for 2 here- kind of embarrassing). I just didn’t have time to read it before it was due, and it wasn’t as high on my list of things I wanted to get through as the others were. I will most likely go back for it.

Also- if you haven’t read the Divergent books yet- go do it. They’re set in Chicago so you kind of have to love them just because of that. And if you saw the movie, then you automatically know Theo James, I mean Four, I mean Tobias Eaton is GORGEOUS. So there’s that too.  I MEAN COME ON, LOOK AT THIS!

theo-james-comic-con-international-2013_3770457(HOW are his teeth SO white?!)

Now I am on to Adulting, which I had started and then put down in place of the Divergent series.

If you don’t follow me on Goodreads yet, you can (just click that there link) for more of this type of nonsense.

Are you in the middle of reading anything these days? Just finish something great? Share in the comments!

Well, Happy Tuesday kids!

Style in the City- Little Goat

So guys I’m pretty excited about a new collab with Jalpa over at Samosa Pop (pop over there to see her post as well!). We are calling it “Style in the City”- each month we will go try out a new restaurant, bar, coffee shop, etc. and post about our experience there, and what we wore. Because honestly, who really needs an excuse to get dressed up and go out to eat…well, maybe sometimes me. Ha!   Anyways, without further ado- here is our first month!

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picstitch (1) Little Goat Diner is a more relaxed (and breakfast-y) spin off of Stephanie Izard’s Girl & the Goat. Located in the West Loop, with a complete diner look- sans the campy red glitter vinyl booths-this place is equal parts gourmet, casual, and classic. With the trademark surprising-yet-makes-sense menu items such as Bull’s Eye French Toast (Sweet Onion Brioche, crispy chicken, and a BBQ maple syrup) and Tiramisu milkshakes- this place has something for everyone. They had Mac & Cheese on the menu so of course I had to have it. Jalpa and I split it as an app, and it was very good- crunchy topping, and plenty of cheesey gooeyness. picstitch (2) I was torn between the french toast (mentioned above), the fried chicken dinner, and the meat ravioli. I took our server’s (Jeremy, who did a great job!) advise and went for the fried chicken dinner (Also the pricier of the three- I see what you did there, Jeremy- I’m a server too!). Not to say the meal wasn’t worth every penny- a breast, leg, and wing, with a scoop of some seriously awesome mashed potatoes and gravy, with coleslaw, and a biscuit. The portions are huge- this is a photo of our plates- AFTER we finished. Hello, leftovers! picstitch (3) Now for the outfit. I went with something casual because I knew it wasn’t too fancy of a place,  that’s the only look I pull off well, because I was coming from work and I don’t usually go too crazy there. And like the awesome bloggers we are, we didn’t take any photos of our outfits- so I will explain/recreate them here. I wore medium/dark wash skinny jeans, with a chiffon tank and a neon yellow sweater over it with some studded combat boots. Something fun, a bit spring-y (because I SWEAR it HAS to be coming soon right?) and a few fun accessories.

Little Goat
Something similar to that. Here are a few more options for the tank top: here, here, or here. And more Sweater options: here and here.
Also, go out and get one of those Revlon Colorburst Balms because they are amazing.
Now, go visit Jalpa, and see what she had to say about her meal and outfit!
Until next month kids!
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Cheers!

Bossy & I know it, not afraid to show it.

Helllloooo there readers…any of them I have left, after all this erratic posting! I’m sorry. I just really don’t like writing just to put something up. I have to find something really moving or inspiring or something that fires me up to write. I know- so dramatic of me. I would just rather write about stuff that I think is cool or interesting, or think I would like to know/read about- rather than just tell you what I did over the weekend (no disrespect to any bloggers that like to do that, just not my cup of proverbial tea).

Anyways, I got something for you today. Cause it’s Friday, it’s going to be 60 today and well, I found something to annoy me enough to write about it.


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Now we will play a short round of Mad libs (with my own personal twist) to introduce today’s topic. Just pick one of the words in the parenthesis to fill in the blanks.
THIS DAMN BAN BOSSY ________ (campaign, load of crap) IS ________ (really really great, annoying) AND I’M GLAD IT DIDN’T (come off as whining, totally came off as whining and didn’t catch on too much). 

Let’s start with this. I know I’m a little late on the whole topic- everyone wore their shirts and tweeted their tweets last week sometime. But it just took  me a while to marinate before I decided how absolutely pathetic and useless this really was. If you haven’t read up on it, look here or here.

Ok- so Sheryl Sandberg (Currently the Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, went to Harvard, and was once the Chief of Staff for the US Secretary of Treasury) is all up in arms because one of her teachers in high school called her “bossy” and it hurt her feelings. I’m sure there’s a bit more to it than that- but what it comes down to is she is, and probably always has been an empowered woman who got shit done. I don’t think there’s a need to apologize, be ashamed of it, or let critics call you a name because of it that hurts your feelings so deeply. Apparently someone stepped on her toes and she got mad and started a campaign. Because that’s what powerful people do. They campaign. Or at least that’s what it seems like from House of Cards.

I think there is a huge misconception here. I think people are forgetting a small detail. You know, that fact that there is a huge difference between being a leader and being bossy. Leaders motivate, inspire, and energize their team. And they look at their “workers” as that, a team. Bossy people suck the life out of people, demand, and are rarely satisfied. And look at their “workers” as peons. It’s the concept of micro-management, versus giving someone a job and letting them figure out how to get it done.

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Another flaw I find in this campaign is it’s posed as if the word “bossy” is gender specific. That boys are never, or can never be called “bossy”- instead they are viewed as leaders. Most people who have “Bosses” instead of “Leaders” (male or female) working over them-think their bosses are exactly that- bossy, jerks, arrogant, etc. And rightfully, so. The flaw is in the leadership, not the word.

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Overall, I just think this makes women as a whole look weak, whiny, and pathetic. Like we have such hurt feelings over what people say about us. Or that it truly attacks the foundation of our equality or something. I think there are two thoughts that should flow through our minds if we are referred to as “bossy”.
1) What am I doing wrong?
2) What am I doing right?
‘Cuz #hatersgunnahate- amiright?

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But instead Sheryl’s tactic is to start a campaign and get the Girl Scouts involved (And don’t tell me those Girl Scouts aren’t a little pushy when they’re peddling those Tagalongs outside the grocery store which you’re so desperately trying not to buy because you’ll eat the whole box in one sitting) anyways this campaign is centered around hurt feelings and how degrading a word is. A word that I (like most people) probably haven’t used since I was in the sandbox- and for those of us who haven’t caught up yet- it’s time to leave the sandbox. As for the young girls and future leaders she’s trying to impact- A) They don’t even care enough, and first chance some girl in middle school is mean to her- she’s going to call her bossy, or something worse. B) it’s part of growing up, you get picked on (note: getting picked on is different than being bullied) and it teaches you to have a thicker skin C) Lead by example. Don’t teach girls to complain over a word- teach them the essence of a better word so they won’t be called the negative word you dislike. AKA- RISE ABOVE IT.

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I mean, I’m not saying words don’t hurt or are never degrading- but come on…”bossy”? What gets me most is she’s quoted having said; “I was called bossy when I was in ninth grade,” Sandberg recalled. “My teacher took my best friend Mindy aside and she said, ‘You shouldn’t be friends with Sheryl. She’s bossy.’ And that hurt.”

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I would bet you ten bucks and a beer/shot combo that the teacher that said this- was a woman. And here in lies the biggest problem. I think more often than we’d like to admit- women are the ones playing the victim, and holding ourselves/each other back or pushing each other down. While I don’t neglect that women make 77¢ to a man’s dollar, and that women make up only 4.6% of the Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 company CEO positions either. However, as unfortunate as it is, big things take big time- and I think women have just as much to learn about empowerment and empowering one another, as men do.

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I think equality is important, rather- imperative in our society, I just don’t think stomping out a word is how we achieve that. Women, fist-to-hip, tapping our toes, finger wagging, demanding people not call us bossy is the exact picture of bossy we are “fighting”.

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Instead- why not focus on building up and encouraging women who lead with strength, grace, tenacity, and energy. Instead of women who feel they have something to compensate for, who are everything you would both dread and expect them to be.

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Or, maybe for a minute- be proud someone called you bossy at all. Maybe you know what’s going on ahead of everyone else, and have the voice and courage to call it out- and make things happen. I don’t think bossy is always bad. It’s all in the delivery.

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d4302e51eb3bf26a3fa4de21ed6a6cef                             (I would just like to had three words to the end of this quote “or are becoming”)
Also, for a way better/longer version of this post- read Bossypants by Tina Fey. You can thank me later.

Spring is coming!!!

So it was great last week when it was 50 degrees and sunny and we were all happy- and then we got that fun little snow dusting a day later. I think winter is just trying to hold on for dear life and remind us that technically it’s still her reign for another week. #RUDE

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BUT just because the weather is absolutely bi-polar, let’s not let that stop us from enjoying some (maybe premature) excitement about it warming up, because Spring is coming, and so is something else- by the same name.

Spring is a new rewards program which keeps track of your rewards through your credit/debit card instead of having to print or remember to use your vouchers. Not to mention you won’t be that friend who is always whipping out the discount voucher when it’s time to pay, it’s a new more discreet way to get the discount you want, without looking like the crazy coupon lady in front of you at Jewel. If you have a reward for a certain place and you use the credit or debit card you have hooked up to your Spring account it will automatically give you the reward credit to your chosen debit/credit account. They have a pretty big list of participating retailers which I’m sure will keep expanding as it catches on as well.

My first reward with them is a $10 gift to Taverna 750 which I am very excited to use. I’ll be sure to do a follow up post with my review of Taverna and the Spring system. If you are curious about trying Spring out for yourself, the perfect time would be their March 20th pop up events around the city. If you’d like to see the list of participating vendors click here.

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And a big thanks to Chicago Blogger Network for setting this up!