25 of 30: I like 'em a lot

Top - Anthro; Button up - Anthro; Skirt - Anthro; Shoes - Boutique 9; Tights - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Watch Ring - Anthro; Bracelets (set) - Anthro

Date: Tuesday, November 30, 2010

This button up and skirt are my most remixed items. I've worn the skirt here, here and here. I've worn the button up here, here and here. This makes this remix number 4 for these lovelies. These are also my most remixed shoes, which I will not provide examples for because I've worn them for half of my remixes!!!

I always knew that I love button ups, but this remix has just reinforced my love for them. There is no other top that you can layer under a shirt, under a sweater, over a dress, open, buttoned up...just endless opportunities. Not to mention, I totally don't have to iron it when I wear it under stuff. Button ups are a win-win!

This skirt is pretty basic, it has something like a tulip shape, but it's nothing special. I actually only wore it once or twice before the remix. I now see all of the other options I have with it. Actually, a lot of items in my remix were infrequently worn prior to the remix. I'm suprised at how many looks I've been able to put together. Granted some of them were just 'ok', and a couple I vow to never remix again, but others were pretty fab.

24 of 30: Orange Crush

Top - Anthro; Pants - Anthro; Shoes - Urban; Necklace - Anthro; Belt - Anthro; Coat - Sample (see below)

Date: Monday, November 29, 2010

This is my last full week of the 30 for 30!!!! ::Confetti explodes, balloons pop, sirens blow:: I wanted to have at least one other remix with this orange shirt. This top is another one that is a challenge to style, but I think this one came out ok. I do love color, orange is just gorgeous!

Now that it's cold outside, you will get to see some of my winter coat collection. The first one up is a recently accepted hand-me-down from my cousin. She's awesome and stylish. She got the coat from an URBN sample sale, so no designer tag folks. sorry. It's either from Anthro, Urban, Leifsdotter or Free People. My guess is Anthro or Urban. I can't wait to wear this coat with some sky high heels and a lovely a-line dress/skirt. Oh...the possiblities.

Don't you love how coats totally spice up the life of an outfit?

23 of 30: Staying in

Top - J. Crew; Blazer - Banana; Jeggings - Joe's; Boots - Thrifted; Socks - Free People; Necklace - Etsy; Headband - Anthro

Date: Sunday, November 28, 2010

Welcome to my apartment! Do you like my shredder-turned bookstand? How about my cable cord? The top end of my guitar? Cable cord? They're the lovely result of studio apartment living! LOL

I'm not feeling so hot today, so I'm staying in for today's pictures. *I did get up for church, so I did have a reason to get dressed* Chances are high that I will change into something more stretchy and wooly following this post. Not sure what's up, I've had a little tummy ache in the mornings over the past couple of days - it may be the food I was eating. My stomach has been super sensitive of the foods I eat since I've started cooking on my own. Now, if I eat anything high in dairy or greasy, it's like Pearl Harbor in my belly! I'm getting back to my regular eating routine soon, so hopefully I'll feel better shortly.

22 of 30: Monopoly & 40 Degree Weather

Dress worn as skirt - J. Crew; Sweater - Anthro; Shoes - Boutique 9; Tights - Hue; Necklace - Anthro; Belt - Urban

Date: Saturday, November 27, 2010

Good news - I stayed in my house yesterday to avoid buying something for myself. I played Monopoly with my family, and my brother won for the first time EVER.

Bad news - I've forgotten what 40 degree weather feels like. Today's weather forecast was a high of 46 and a low of 29. It was 39 degrees and windy when I took these pictures. With the former unnatural 50 - 60 degree November weather, I have been spoiled. So spoiled that I have forgotten that weather in the 40's is pretty cold. The weather definitely requires a coat, and maybe a hat and gloves. I think I'm going to have to include my winter coats in my pictures moving forward. I've been freezing in outfits 19 through 22. Hopefully you'll still be able to see my outfits with my coat on top, and hopefully I won't have such awkward poses since I'll be warmer with a coat on!

21 of 30: "Black Friday"

Top - J. Crew; Skirt - J. Crew; Shoes - Boutique 9; Tights - Anthro; Necklace - Vintage (gift)

Date: Friday, November 26, 2010

I know the last two posts have been centered around Thanksgiving and that's because it's pretty awesome! Think about what other holiday allows you to eat a lot, have two paid vacation days, and is followed by the best sales of the year. Seriously guys, Thanksgiving has it all - family, love, appreciation, food, and bargain shopping!!! I don't know if Kendi knew what she was doing by starting the 30 for 30 in November, but I definitely feel like I'm missing out on some Black Friday deals. Black Friday isn't Black Friday with no shopping. I love the satisfaction of getting something I love for a "steal" price!

For example, I saw this AWESOME Christmas sweater in Anthro, and the only reason I didn't get it was because the store was closing when I saw it. It's killing me...well, not KILLING ME, but it is making me envious of other people who are shopping. How am I supposed to not shop with all these sales? I'm a bargain shopper, I don't pay more than $50 for ANYTHING, and I get things that were originally priced in the hundreds....

I'm rambling, but I'm also writing this to say don't judge me or hate me if I slip up and buy something because I love it, and I know I can only get it for a great price today. I'm not saying it's definite, but I am saying it's possible...

20 of 30: Home for Thanksgiving

Dress - H&M; Boots - Anthro; Belt - Anthro; Scarf - Anthro; Tights - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Date: Thursday, November 25, 2010

My Thanksgiving was awesome! I got to see a lot of family and friends. We laughed, lovingly yelled, ate and enjoyed each others company! I ended up making the Sweet Potato, Kale & Corn Chowder I made earlier this month. I left out the cashews and remembered the red pepper. People liked it, some took it home for leftovers, so I was happy about that.

I will stick with tradition for this post and talk about the things that I am thankful for. First, I am thankful for my relationship with God and how I have grown in that aspect. Second, I am thankful for my family, boyfriend and friends. I am thankful for the challenges that this year brought, because I know they will make me stronger. I am thankful for the service I am able to provide through my involvement in my sorority. Finally, I am grateful for the outlet that this blog has provided me. I am so happy I decided to discuss more things on my blog, it's been a lot more fun for me, and I love being able to share other parts of my life with you all! I am so thankful for everything that 2010 has brought me!

19 of 30: Crazy Fun

Top - Anthro; Sweater - Anthro; Jeans - AG via Anthro; Shoes - Anthro; Necklace - Target; Earrings - Urban

Date: Wednesday,  November 24, 2010

Today, the day before Thanksgiving is always a bunch of crazy fun for someone like me. Today I had/have to: work, drive home, cook, clean, pack, clean out my closet, create decorations, and do anything else that comes to my or my mom's mind. To add to that list, I had the genius idea of starting some mini-braids today. No worries, I'm only about 3% finished, and I'll just be braiding it for the rest of the holiday. With all of that being said, I'm still smiling, because in all of the craziness, I'm so happy and thankful for the reasons that generate all of the craze. The main reason being my love for my family. Mom, dad, lil bro bro and everybody else - I love you guys, I can't wait to see everyone tomorrow!!!

PS - I packed my outfits for the remainder of the weekend...if some of them turn out to be loopy, blame it on a lack of time to plan ;-)
PSS - Still not sure what I'm cooking for tomorrow, the idea to try to cook something else was a fail, maybe I'll try a surprise dish...MAYBE

18 of 30: Saying goodbye

Top - Anthro; Dress worn  as skirt - Limited; Shoes - Steve Madden; Belt - Urban; Tights - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Date: Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This challenge has allowed me to put new things together and has allowed me to see if it's time to give some things away. The latter is a benefit that came unexpectedly.

First, the top...My outfits with this top have not been my favorite. When I went to buy this top, I remember asking myself if I would be able to style it, and obviously I'm having a challenging time doing so. I know the top looks great tucked into something, but I wanted to see if I had other styling options with the top. I think my "generous" bust along with the bow and the a-box shape of the top makes it a challenge to style for my body. 

Now, the dress...My mom got this dress for me because I entered the Miss Black & Gold Pageant at school. When I got it in 2006, it fit much tighter. I couldn't zip the thing on my own. Since I've lost weight, it's loose and I'm not a fan of the shape.

I'm going to try to do a closet clean before Thanksgiving to get rid of things I don't wear. I think this may be the last time I wear this dress. I love the top too much to give it away. I think I'll just have to stick to wearing it tucked into something...most likely a skirt.

17 of 30: I 'Heart' Color

Dress - French Connection; Cardigan - Anthro; Shoes - Everybody via Anthro; Tights - Urban; Scarf - Anthro; Earrings - Gift

Date: Monday, November 22, 2010

I love color. I knew I wanted to include some bright pieces in my 30 to challenge me to stretch my creativity and create some cool outfits. I would have never put this outfit together if not for this challenge. I always knew that purple and gold went nicely together. However, I struggled with what color tights to pair with it. At first I thought - keep it neutral, then I changed my mind and decided to add another color - GO FOR IT! One of the style books I have (InStyle New Secrets of Style) talks about mixing colors and states that there is a general "rule of 3*" when mixing colors. They explained that you can typically mix up to three colors and be totally awesome. I use this a lot to help me determine if my color mixing is a little too much or just right. In this sitch, adding color number three added an extra punch!

*Note that this is a general "rule", and not law you can definitely get away with more colors at times!

Random note: Jazz, if you're reading this, these are the earrings you got me for Christmas FRESHMAN YEAR!!! Yes, I still have them and wear them from time to time, luv ya!

A Vegetarian Thanksgiving - Burgundy Stew

Hi Everyone,

I'm going to have to post my outfit pics tomorrow because work was running REALLY late. Like I got home at 8 late! Like...I didn't really wear my outfit at all, but I'm still going to take pics in it tomorrow late.

For those of you who don't know, this is my first vegetarian Thanksgving. My mom asked me to bring something so that I won't starve to add some more diversity to our traditional options. Let me tell you about my family's Thanksgiving. First, my family can cook. Second, we offer a ton of meat and sides including: fried turkey, mac n cheese, roasted turkey, collard greens, sweet potato bake, stuffing, cranberry, glazed ham, gratin squash and desserts that I will leave out. Clearly, my dish needs to be BOM(dot)COM, however I don't know WHAT to cook. Originally, I was going to make the Sweet Potato, Kale and Corn Chowder I made earlier this month, however I want something with a bigger "wow" factor. Additionally, my family has a lot of nut allergies, so I need a dish with no nuts! I tried a dish last night - I cooked a Burgundy Stew from Vegan Dad.

Burgundy Stew

2 tbsp oil (I used EVOO)
1 leek, white and light green part, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
15 whole pearl onions
3 turnips, cubed
2 parsnips, sliced
2 large carrots, sliced
2 large potatoes, cubed *I used Yukon Gold2 cups red wine
2 cups veggie broth
1 19 oz can white beans, drained and rinsed

1 tbsp basil *I didn't have any
4 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup tomato paste
 I got this recipe from Vegan Dad, click the link for direction details.

This recipe is NOT for the faint at heart. The vegetable prep took me 1.5 hours, and I didn't know how to prep some of the veggies. I didn't know if I should have removed the skin for the potatoes, onions, parsnips, carrots and turnips. I ended up removing the skin for all of them, because I wanted to air on the safe side.

I thought this would be "THE DISH", but it wasn't. I had my lovely taste-tester bf try it. His response was, "It's good, but it's not Thanksgiving." I agreed. Additionally, I had never eaten turnips or parsnips before, and turnips are somewhat bitter, so I don't know that I want to introduce everyone to these vegetables on Thanksgiving.

I'm going to try to give one more dish a try before Thursday. I'm tentative about making a seitan dish because meat-eaters normally frown at anything that imitates in appearance and taste but isn't meat. So...who knows what I'll cook. Check for another post soon - hopefully the next one's a winner!

16 of 30: Basic

Top - Anthro; Skirt - J. Crew; Boots - Thrifted; Tights - Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro; Ring - J. Crew

Date: Sunday, November 21, 2010

Today was a basic day, church, brunch with bf, holiday shopping, errands, cook, clean. I did not buy anything for myself when I went shopping either ::pats self on back:: My outfit reflects today's activities. I kept it simple, comfortable and warm. Sometimes you need that, something basic.

15 of 30: Are you bored yet?

Top - Anthro; Sweater - Anthro; Skirt - Anthro; Shoes - Steve Madden; Tights - Hue via Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Date: Saturday, November 20, 2010

I am halfway through this challenge!!! One would think that after wearing the same exact clothes for the past 15 days, that I might be bored, but I'm not. On the contrary, I'm loving every moment. For the past 8 outfits, I have been throwing stuff together haphazardly and I love the way it has worked out. This challenge has already shown me that I have a lot more to work with than I think. Additionally, although I have worn the same clothes, most of my looks have been varied, so the clothes don't feel the same. I'm loving it, and hoping everyone else is enjoying it also!

14 of 30: Rocker Girl

Dress - H&M; Shoes - Cooperative via Urban; Tights - Target; Jacket - Wilson's c 2002; Scarf - Anthro; Earrings - Gift from mom

Date: Friday, November 19, 2010

Anytime I wear leather I feel like a rocker girl. Something about leather means "bad girl ready to take over." LOL. I have a funny story to accompany this lovely jacket. This jacket is a recent addition to my closet - like in the past 2 weeks addition - but I didn't buy it! I went home to visit my grandparents in DC a couple of weeks ago. My grandma is known to house old dresses and jackets from her 4 daughters - one of whom is my mom :-). I was browsing through items on the back porch and found this jacket. I grabbed the jacket, dusted it off and tried it on. What do you know - it fit! I walked downstairs to show my grandmother my find and she starts laughing. She says, "Oh you found YOUR old jacket." Then, I remembered, "WOW, this IS my jacket - I had this in HIGH SCHOOL!"  She was waiting to give it to someone, however she said it was too small for everyone who wanted it. Funny, right? It doesn't fit me quite the same considering that it doesn't really zipper close, but that's ok because I'll only wear it open. Have a rockin' weekend everyone!!!

13 of 30: 9 to 5

Dress worn as top - J. Crew; Pants - Anthro; Blazer - Banana; Shoes - Steve Madden; Earrings - Anthro; Necklace - Anthro

Date: November 18, 2010

I don't work a 9 to 5 in a traditional office setting. As a sales engineer, I service industrial plants in the power generation industry. Service = manual labor with tools and other dirty stuff - literally guys, some stuff is DIRTY!!!

It is only on my office days that I get to wear whatever I want. Today is not an office day. Thus, I will probably only wear this outfit for this 10 minute photo shoot. Following the shoot, I quickly change into khakis, a polo and steel-toe boots for my day job. There's no way to make khakis, a polo and steel toe boots stylish, whenever I've tried I look silly. Not to mention the guys at the plant would think I was a jokester. Just thought I'd let you know so you see why my styling is all over the place. However, if I did work a 9 to 5 in a traditional office, I would totally wear this.

Chickpea and Mango Curry

Chickpea and Mango Curry* from Get Cooking by Mollie Katzen
Serves 4

1 tablespoon canola, soy, or peanut oil
1 teaspoon butter
1 medium red or yellow onion, diced
1 heaping tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 15-oz cans chickpeas (about 3 cups cooked)
2 heaping cups (about 12 oz) frozen mango chunmks
A few dashes cayenne pepper
2 large handfuls baby spinach leaves
*Make this vegan by replacing the butter with an extra tablespoon of oil

  1. Place a large (10-12") heavy skillet over medium heat. After about a minute, add the oil and wirl to coat the pan. Toss in the butter, and swirl until it melts into the oil. Add the onion, curry powedr, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 mintues, or until the onion begins to soften.
  2. Meanwhile, set a colander in teh sink and pour in the chickpeas; give them a quick rinse and allow them to drain.
  3. Add the chickpeas to the skillet, stirring until they get completly coated with the onion and spices. Turn the heat to meidum-low, and cook , stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in the mango and spinach and cover the pan. Let it cook on its own for another 5 mintues, then give it a stir. If it looks like it needs more "sauce," you can add up to 1/2 cup water. If you do, let it come to a boil, then turn the heat back down to low, cover the pan again, and cook slowly for an additional 10 minutes. (At this point, the ucrry benefits greatly from being allowed to just sit, covered, off the heat for 5 to 10 minutes. Not absolutely necessary, but this helps develop the flavor.)
  5. Serve hot, over rice, topped with a fine dusting of cayenne.

I served this dish over brown rice and it was THE BOMB! I love curry flavored anything, so I'm not surprised. This dish was easy to make, quick, filling, satisfying, nutrient-dense and affordable! This is a great option for vegetarians. For those who eat meat, try this as a side to a sweet glazed chicken dish. I can imagine the curry flavors would fare well with a sweet meat.

12 of 30: Anthro*Acessories^4

Shirt - Anthro; Shorts - Anthro; Boots - Anthro; Tights - Anthro; Belt - Anthro; Bracelets - Anthro (they came in a set); Broach - Anthro; Necklace - Laurel Denise

Date: Wednesday, November 17, 2010

This outfit started off with bare bones and I mean BARE BONES. Shirt, shorts and tights and it looked OK. It needed some LIFE, so I added the flower broach...then the belt...then the bracelets...then the necklace, and now I feel like I am a walking accessory. It's totally ok though because I think it works, and like Kendi said last week, there are no rules in fashion!

PS - this title is an homage to my engineering background - the title read out loud it reads "Anthro times Accesories raised to the fourth power!" I know, I'm a nerd!
PSS - my tripod totally blew over  while taking pictures today, because of the wind today. Thankfully my camera didn't get messed up too bad - only the outer frame got slightly banged up. I'm a nerd, but not a bright one! Note to self: Don't use a tripod and time your photos when it's windy. 

11 of 30: Sweet and Sour

Shirt - J. Crew; Jeggings - Joe's via Anthro; Sweater - Anthro; Shoes - Boutique 9 via Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Date: Tuesday, November 16, 2010

  • Bf walking with me to the grocery store yesterday - it's the little things
  • The chickpea mango and curry dish I made last night (look for the post soon)
  • Jc from The Natural Haven giving me a shout out
  • Weather in the 60s in November
  • Getting free bagels from my local sustainable coffee shop
  • My workout this morning - goodbye calories!
  • The dog sweater I'm wearing - I don't mean to be conceited, I just truly love it!

  • The mouse in my apartment right NOW :-(
  • That second close up pic, jk *I do want you to see my jewelry close-up, it's hard to see details in the big pic

10 of 30: Wash Day

Top - Free People; Sweater - Anthro; Jeans - AG; Shoes - Boutique 9 via Anthro; Scarf - Anthro

Date: Monday, November 15, 2010

Outfit #10 means 1/3 of the 30 for 30 is complete - I am really trucking along! As much as I enjoy this challenge, a lot of events are coming up like holiday parties and Thanksgiving, that normally allow me to put together some nice "WOW" outfits that I don't frequent much. I'm going to miss wearing these items. I will stick to the rules and only wear what's in my 30.

Speaking of the 30...one benefit to a closet full of clothes is the reality that you don't have to wash every week. Yesterday, I thought about what I was going to wear today and I realized that I only had one clean top. All of my other dresses and tops were in the dirty clothes. That's why I'm rocking the sequin top today, no fancy event to go to, it just happens to be wash day and this is the only clean thing I have. Plus, I totally dressed this top down, a love of mine is dressing down fancy stuff. Happy Monday!

9 of 30: Holiday party

Dress worn as top - H&M; Skirt - Anthro; Shoes - Steve Madden; Tights - Anthro (2009); Headband - Anthro (2009); Necklace - Anthro (2009); Earrings - Anthro

Date: Sunday, November 14, 2010

I'm back home today, but my usual picture spot was occupied by a large crate holding trash :(. Hopefully you can still see everything with the stone background...

I am going to a holiday party this evening. At the party, awards are being given for "Best Dressed." I'm sure I won't get best dressed - the ladies & gents attending this party are extremely stylish - however, I still want to have a holiday themed-outfit. It was REALLY hard sticking to the theme with my 30 items, but I think I pulled this outfit together with a passing grade. When I think of the colors associated with the winter holidays, I think red, blue and silver.

RED because it's always warm inside. Also, think about how comforting red hot cocoa is when it's below freezing!
BLUE because you get so cold in the winter, until you're blue in the face, fingers and toes.
SILVER because it's icy and snowy - remember the 70" Philly got last winter?

Unforch, I have no red in my 30 items, but I do have some blues and some great winter accessories! I got my headband from Anthro last year, and it will forever be my favorite winter accessory. I feel like it helps any regular outfit look wintery! Also, you probaly can't tell from the pic, but the tights are similar to tensil, they are sparkly! Finally, I added a red lip to finish the look! I think I tied in the winter theme alright...what do you think? Do I look holiday/themeish?

8 of 30: 5 act scene change

 Top - Anthro; Pants - Citizens via Anthro; Shoes - Everybody via Anthro; Blazer - Banana; Earrings - Anthro

Date: Saturday, November 13, 2010

Today is my brother's championship football game. I'll be sitting in football stands for a good portion of the day. Thus, I wanted to put a look together that was comfortable but still well-styled. I thought this would be easy to do, considering I had only packed so little - LIES! I changed my outfit 5 times - hard to believe considering that I was switching between 4 items total. The challenge arose in finding an appropriate sweater/jacket to work with this top. With me being busty, the top has the potential to add unwanted volume with the wrong jacket. I went with the structured blazer because it always saves me and gives me the shape I desire.  This is my final look. Begin scene - GO VIKINGS!

7 of 30: Resisting the urge

 Top - J. Crew; Skirt - J. Crew; Blazer - Banana; Scarf - Urban; Tights - Anthro; Shoes - Boutique 9 via Anthro; Earrings - Anthro (borrowed from mom)

Date: Friday, November 12, 2010

This marks my one week mark in the 30 for 30! The first week flew by, and I look forward to the next three. As you know, I'm home in VA this weekend. My mom decided to go shopping with me today because that's our typical mother-daughter outing of choice whenever we visit each other. It was SOOOOOO hard resisting the urge to buy stuff. We went to a couple of stores including Anthro. I saw an awesome hat, these adorable shorts, a bedazzled blazer, and a striped tee - all of which I loved and wanted. Don't worry, I left with some gifts - prepping for holiday - and a cookbook, nothing else. I'm trying to hold strong to my word!

What I do to stay in shape - living a healthy lifestyle

Recently I got a question asking me what I do to stay in shape. Here's my answer - I will start by stating some easy rules that I have regarding health/weight.

**Note: I'm basing all of this on my experience and acquired knowledge.
  1. I don't believe in diets and I have never been on a diet.
  2. Knowing your healthy weight is important and essential. Note- I'm not saying follow your BMI. This is especially important for women of color as we naturally have body shapes that will tell us we are "obese" by BMI standings.
  3. Staying in shape is really about living a balanced, healthy lifestyle.
Facts about me:
I'm 5'7", shoe size 9, slim bottom half, busty top, and a healthy weight for me is between 135-140 pounds. I currently wear a size 6 in the waist and a M/8/10 in tops and dresses. I currently weigh 140 pounds. I was 160 pounds in college in 2004. Therefore I have to work to maintain my healthy weight - I'm not the type of person who can do nothing and maintain my weight.

My healthy lifestyle journey:
When I turned 23 in August of 2009, I recognized that I did not live a balanced lifestyle. Before August, I ate whatever I wanted and worked out once/month. I decided that I wanted to make a change. I started off slowly by signing up to run an 8K (5 miles), this led me to run once a week. After the run, I joined a local basketball league and that was my workout. I had made some changes, but I still wasn't fully committed to being healthy. In March 2010 I fully committed myself to changing my lifestyle. I started by eliminating meat from my diet. Additionally, I kicked my work out schedule into high gear during the summer of 2010.

What I do:
I am very conscious of what I eat. I stay away from fried foods and I eat balanced meals. I don't drink soda or juice. I will splurge and break these "rules" every now and then. However, I don't eat these things regularly. I eat these types of foods 1-2 times/month. SN: I have a sweet tooth, and I do normally eat dessert 3-4 days/week. It's something I can't shake. Dessert = one Snickerdoodle cookie from Whole Foods.

I eat 3 meals a day, and have 1-2 snacks most days. I NEVER start my day without breakfast. Breakfast = peanut butter oatmeal with raisins & brown sugar or cereal or a waffle with honey and applesauce or cinnamon raisin toast with greek yogurt and an apple. My lunch varies, since I work in sales, I do a lot of entertaining for lunch. Thus, I have to be very conscious of what I choose to eat because my healthy options are limited. Snacks = hummus & celery or an apple. I post my dinners on the blog, I make a variety of meals including pastas, soups  and veggie cakes. I take one daily multivatimin.

I stay active. Throughout the summer and fall, I ran outdoors. I would run 3 miles - 3 days/week at a pace of about 9.30 min/mile. Total week workout time = 90 minutes and I would SWEAT! LOL Since it's gotten colder and the sun sets at 5, I joined a gym for the winter months. I don't have a set schedule, but I plan on giving my knees a break. I will focus on Arc Trainer machines for cardio and introduce some weight lifting into my regimen. I also still play basketball once/week in the local league.

Finally, I have an active lifestyle. I live in Philadelphia and I ride my bike or walk to most places in the city.

So, that's it! What do you do? Are you proud of your lifestyle? Do you have plans to make any changes any time soon?

6 of 30: Friends make me smile

Dress - French Connection; Sweater - Anthro; Shoes - Boutique 9 via Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro; Tights - Hue via Anthro

Date: Thursday, November 11, 2010 (Happy Veterans' Day!)

Today, I'm going to lunch with a friend that I've known since middle school and I'm meeting up with some of my sorority sisters for dinner when I go home to DC today. I love my friends, they really add so much life/color/flavor to my life. They are wonderful and they make me smile :) I know I probably sound like a 1st grader writing this, but it's true. LOL.

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge

Cheesy Baked Tortellini

Cheesy Baked Tortellini from College Vegetarian Cooking
Serves 4

*My additions/modification are in Italics
1 pound frozen cheese tortellini
8 ounces fresh mushrooms
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
Salt and pepper
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 bag baby spinach leaves *my own little addition

Preheat the oven to 400F. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the tortellini. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain in a colander and place in a 9-inch baking pan.

Meanwhile, cut the ends off the mushroom stems, discard, and cut the mushrooms into thin slices. Heat the canola oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat, add the mushrooms and spinach, and cook, stirring frequently, for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the mushrooms are golden brown.

Add the butter to the skillet and stir until melted, the stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly pour in the milk, stirring continuously. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook for 7 to 8 minutes, or until the sauce just begins to bubble. Remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper, and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Pour the sauce over the tortellini and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the sauce begins to brown. Serve immediately.

I nearly BOTCHED this dish. First, being cheap, I used my vanilla soy milk instead of regular soy milk. I normally get away with using my vanilla-flavored milk in recipes for biscuits, cornbread and cookies, however I did NOT get away with it this time. The tortellini definitely had a slight vanilla taste to it, which wasn't the best. Second, the original recipe instructed to add the butter/flour to the PAN, which I read to mean the pan with the tortellini. I definitely added the butter and flour to the baking pan, and realized I was wrong before I started mixing too much. Hence why I changed the wording. I do think this dish would be AWESOME with regular milk/soy milk in the future. I served it with a side salad.

5 of 30: Just Smitten

Dress worn as skirt - J. Crew; Button Up - J. Crew; Shoes - Urban; Tights - Anthro; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Stolen from my Mom; Watch - Swatch

Date: Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tomorrow is Veteran's Day = Paid Holiday. I'm also taking Friday off, so today is the last day of the work week!!! ::Fireworks and Confetti Explode:: On top of the short week - I'm surprised at how much I like this outfit! I'm just smitten - all of these things working out for me is an AWESOME start to my long weekend!

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge

4 of 30: This striped top

Top - Anthro; Shorts - Anthro; Cardie - Anthro; Boots - Thrifted; Necklace - Anthro (2009); Earrings - Anthro; Tights - Anthro (2009)

Date: Tuesday, November 9, 2010

This is one of the outfits I picked out in my head while planning for the 30 for 30. I honestly have about 10 outfits picked out with this top alone, but I'm trying to push myself to work with items I don't wear as often, and thus find harder to style. I LOVE this Anthro top, I would wear it every day if I could . I know I'm not supposed to wear horizontal stripes because I'm busty, but I totally don't care if this makes me look bustier! There I go making up words again...

Oh...one more thing, I'm switching out my Spiegel cardigan for another Anthro cardie. I realized I needed more color variety with my cardies, so Spiegel is OUT, Anthro is in...I'll post pics of the replacement cardie as soon as I get a chance. The Anthro cardie is mostly cream with some black highlights.

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge

3 of 30: It's too early for a crisis

Dress - Limited; Sweater - Anthro; Boots - Anthro; Necklace - Target (2006); Scarf - Urban (2009); Belt - Anthro; Socks - Anthro (2009)

Date: Monday, November 8, 2010

I haven't been commenting on my 30 for 30 outfits, but I feel that I MUST explain this one. First, I felt pretty frumpy in my outfit. Second, it was 46 degrees, rainy and windy in Philly. Third, my hair looked crazy. Fourth, I have already had a "WHAT TO WEAR???" crisis - it happened this entire morning as I was trying to figure out what to wear today.

All of that being said this is what I came up with. It's not my best, but it's not awful, and I know some people dig this type of look. Right? ::crickets, crickets:: After all, I DID get compliment from my landlord. Landlord = middle aged potter/jewelry maker. A compliment is still a compliment! Now I'm just trying to make myself feel better...not sure that it's working...

PS - I sort of cheated and wore a top underneath my dress, but it's not supposed to show in the outfit, although it did peak through in the pics. I needed an extra layer for warmth.

PSS - The pics were taken by me, my new tripod and my timed dSLR, I'll try to work on my facial expressions and poses to give you LIFE! LOL.

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge

Hair Update

Hi Everyone,

If you've wondered why I haven't posted any recent hair pics/styles, it's because I have been all over the place with my hair styling. This normally happens when I'm tired of styling my hair, it leads me to be quite restless. For example, last week I went from a rolled updo, to mini-twists -for a sec, I took them down when I realized I had no time to do them- to two-strand twists, to a flat-twist updo, to these Grecian-style braids pictured below. This has been my solace in my hair style frenzy.

WARNING: You will see a poor, sad illegal ponytail in outfit 3 of 30 in my 30 for 30 challenge today.

In other news, I did a bentonite clay treatment for my hair because I ran out of my AOHSR and Whole Foods was out too. I mixed 1/4 cup bentonite clay with 1/2 cup water. I think this may have cleared up whatever scalp issues I was having. I know my typical shampoo is not a deep clean, thus, the clay solution must have removed the product buildup that was irritating my scalp. I'm going to include bentonite treatments to my hair on a monthly/sixthly basis. I know sixthly isn't a word, but don't you always wish there was any easier way to say that you do something every other month? I do.

I used bentonite clay solutions in mid-2009, when I was on my "mixtress" tip. I added a ton of other things to the solution then (honey, yogurt, ACV). I'm going to stick to 1 part clay to 2 parts water moving forward.

How is your hair going? Are you tired of it? I'm at the point where I don't want to spend more than 1 hour on my hair EVERY WEEK, LOL. It's a phase, I know, this too shall pass...

2 of 30

Date: Sunday, November 7, 2010

SN: Apparently everyone else is starting  the 30 for 30 on Monday...blame it on my inability to read excitement as to why I started 2 days early. SMH.

Button Up - Anthro; Cardie - Anthro; Pants - Anthro; Shoes - Steve Madden; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge.

1 of 30

FYI, I decided to update my main page with pics from the remix too....this may be style overload for some, but it's just for 30 days, so bear with me!!!

Date: Saturday, November 6, 2010

Blazer - Banana; Top - Free People; Skirt - Anthro; Shoes - Steve Madden; Necklace - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro

Click here for more info on the 30 for 30 challenge.

Late night confessions...

I went to Target today to get some drinks for an event I am hosting tomorrow. While I was there, I realized that I needed some ESSENTIAL items. When I say ESSENTIAL, I mean it, like underwear...gloves...socks...dresses...LOL, ok, not dresses, but I did purchase all of the prior.

I bought 3 pairs of dress socks, 2 pairs of footie socks, one pair of gloves and 4 underwear. HONESTLY, I've been going sock-less or wearing Under Armour socks since it got cold, and I realized that I really need to correct that. I won't even open the doors to discuss the need for the last item, LOL! I totally think this shouldn't disqualify me from my 5-month shopping diet. I mean, do you want me to have frost-bitten toes and fingers AND not wear underwear? NO, I didn't think so. And there you have it.

Outfit of the Day: Dogs & Reindeers


Top - J. Crew; Sweater - Anthro; Leggings - American Apparel; Socks - Urban; Boots - Anthro; Scarf - Anthro; Earrings - Anthro; Hair - Flat twist w/ Afro

Date: Saturday, October 30

Saturday was an "in the house" day for me. I gave my apartment some much needed TLC and caught up on some reading. Considering that, I knew I wanted to wear something super comfy and warm, but still preserve my style. I LOVE layering thigh-high socks with knee boots and leggings. I just scrunch them down under my boots to whatever place I feel and I have another layer of warmth and texture in my outfit!

Oh, and if you couldn't tell, my cardigan has dogs on it, and my socks have reindeer faces on them! I'm normally not a fan of animal prints, but I can't help these, I love them both. Plus, I feel like these animal prints don't scream, "ANIMAL PRINT, I'M AN ANIMAL PRINT, HELLO I'M AN ANIMAL PRINT!!!" Hmm...maybe not, they're still keepers in my book. :-)