I Turned 30 in Honduras and It Was Everything

How do you want to celebrate your 30th birthday? My husband, Bill, asked me this a while back and I couldn’t come up with a good answer, so we tabled the discussion for a long time.

Then one of us mentioned it would be nice to resurrect a dream we’d had at 25. To celebrate that milestone birthday, we had wanted to take a big trip together. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out then for a multitude of reasons (a serious loss in the family, money, timing), but we found ourselves wondering if maybe it’d be feasible for 30.

We waffled. We were just about to pay off our joint credit card debt, so we weren’t sold on the idea of incurring more debt. We went back and forth and back and forth until finally we said: fuck it. We’re only going to turn 30 once and we might as well make a big deal of it. We decided on not just one but two trips—one near my birthday and one near his.

My birthday was up first, so when the right deal popped up, we booked a week-long western Caribbean cruise that would take us to Honduras, Belize, and Mexico. Though we’d been to Mexico before, Honduras and Belize were new to us, so we were excited. (We’d also booked this trip in the dead of winter so the idea of spending a full week in the sunshine on the beach really appealed to us.)

The trip ended up being the perfect blend of relaxing and serene and fun and exciting. We spent a lot of time laying out in the sun, drinking, sampling food, and exploring. What more can you really ask for? Here’s what we did in each port!

Roatan, Honduras

I turned 30 in Honduras—a phrase I can’t believe I get to say. We watched the sun rise and, for our excursion, we were taken to a private island and greeted by goddamn sea lions. Bill and I broke off from the group so I could take a picture with Ting the sea lion. I ended up getting to do a couple of tricks with him, like shaking his hand, feeding him fish, and even getting a kiss.

We wandered through the “zoo” comprised of animals that had been rescued and then found the beach, which was more picturesque and serene than I imagined. Though the day had begun a bit cloudy, by the time we’d wandered to the beach, the sun was out and the water was clear and we couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day. We got some local beers, laid in the sun and in the shade, splashed around in the water, and relaxed. As I think of it now, I feel like I can still feel the sun on my face and hear the rustling of the trees (as well as the occasional squawk of the parrots who were nearby, but that’s all right).

Midway through the day, we got some local food including rice and beans, chicken, fish, and plantains, which I still maintain was the best food we’ve eaten on the trip. After lunch, we had opportunity to feed some monkeys as an optional part of our excursion. I was in, and Bill offered to take some photos of me. When we got to the monkey cages, we learned that Bill would have to join me in the cage while someone else took the photos, and he kindly agreed to do so, even though he wasn’t crazy about the idea—especially after they said the monkeys would gravitate toward the tallest object in the cage (AKA him).

But we were set up with two bowls of food and ushered into the cage. Two monkeys jumped onto Bill immediately and eventually some jumped on me, too. The sweet little noises they made sounded just like puppies and they were a whole lot gentler than I expected given that there were tiny mammals climbing all over our heads. Bill and I laughed a lot during these couple of minutes and it was great.

After another hour or so on the beach, we explored the replica Mayan ruins, stopped in the gift shop, and then went back to the boat, concluding what might have been my best birthday ever.

Harvest Caye, Belize

Harvest Caye is a private island owned by Norwegian Cruise Lines, which made it the perfect destination for another beach day. It was truly stunning, both from a distance and up close—and, honestly, who wouldn’t want to spend the day on a private island?!

We rented a clam shell beach tent to keep us out of the sun because it was hot as early as 8 a.m. But I really loved this port and I never say no to a beach day. I even found a perfect seashell that I snuck into my bag and brought back home with me.

Costa Maya, Mexico

In Costa Maya, Bill and I (already sunburnt) opted out of spending a day on the beach and instead wandered around the shops. We caught a show featuring “pirates” (which was actually pretty good!); admired some of the Mexican wares; watched majestic dolphins playing; and drooled over some beautiful conchas. There was even a bird sanctuary featuring flamingos to check out. It was fun!

Cozumel, Mexico

How do you say farewell to a vacation that’s already been incredible? YOU SWIM WITH DOLPHINS. Yeah, you heard me.

I’ve always loved water animals and the idea of swimming with dolphins seemed like… well, a lot like magic. Bill insisted we do it, saying we’d love it, and he was absolutely right. It was the highlight of the trip!

I was so excited that I could barely keep my cool, and when we finally got in the water with the dolphin, the trainer asked, “Is everyone excited?” and I gave such an enthusiastic “YES!” that I volunteered myself to go first. IT WAS THE BEST.

The trainer pulled me away from the group and told me to hold onto my life vest. The dolphin would then come and give me a kiss on the cheek, the trainer said. She DID. I DIED. Then I got to give her a kiss, too! The trainer instructed me to hold out my hand and the dolphin would come put her nose in my palm, but instead, she gave me ANOTHER kiss on the cheek. I felt like we were besties, obviously. Then she put her nose in my palm and I was able to pet her. For the last trick, I had to hold out both hands and touch her flippers. It was incredible and I was so, so happy, which I think you can tell from my photos.

I also loved watching Bill interact with the dolphin, too. He was so kind and gentle with her. It was sweet. And, of course, he took the best photo.

In between each trick the dolphin did, the trainer shared facts with us, let us get up close with the dolphin, and the swim wrapped with a couple of tricks. In all, we spent about an hour in the water with her, and it was glorious.

In all, the vacation was lovely and just what we needed after being vacation-free for about a year. I’d highly recommend the vacation to anyone looking for an ultra relaxing trip!

xo.

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What I Wore (and Did) in May 2018

May was a truly magical month. I always tend to love May: warmer weather, longer days, and it’s my birth month so I’m very biased.

But this May was extra great. First, I was promoted at work, and as of June 4, I’m officially back in the social media realm! I’m so, so, so excited (and it’s been fantastic so far). I also had so much fun spending time with Bill and friends and Obi.

Also: I turned 30.

And, I didn’t just turn 30. I turned 30 in style. Like, as a spoiled 30-year-old princess and I loved every single second. It started with an incredible gift from Bill—meet-and-greet tickets to see my favorite drag queen, Trixie Mattel. I MEAN. I’m not exaggerating when I say that night was one of the best of my life.

If you’re a fan of RuPaul’s Drag Race, or if you’re even just a fan of Trixie, then you know she’s hysterical. I’d been dying to see one of her live shows, which mixes comedy with her folk music. Bill and I had meet-and-greet tickets to one of her shows back in September but, unfortunately, weren’t able to go. So this was everything!

Before the show, WE GOT TO MEET HER. I was so nervous that I got drunk, despite having done this once before and despite knowing she’d be perfectly lovely, which she was. I was also able to give her a gift: an adorable beaded Miss Vanjie bracelet. When I handed the bracelet over to her, rambling about how I bought it for her and didn’t make it, she put the bracelet on her wrist and said to me, “You had to buy this? You dumb bitch.”

Trixie Mattel called me a dumb bitch I expect to see that on my gravestone. 

I also got to take a photo with one of my favorite local drag queens, Mia E Z’lay, who performs regularly at Drag Brunch in Holyoke, Mass., which Bill and I love to go to. It was awesome!

Then there was the show. I don’t think I’ve laughed that hard in a really long time; I laughed until my stomach hurt, until my throat ached, and until I cried, and then I laughed some more. I laughed so hard that I made friends with the (very drunk) couple in front of me who couldn’t stop laughing every time I laughed. Trixie’s show was the perfect mix of smart comedy and terrible puns, 90s music that’s so bad it’s good, skits, high-brow jokes, low-brow jokes, drag jokes, and folk music. I loved literally every single second of it, including the time I spent inhaling two bags of peanut M&Ms in between my bajillion glasses of wine.

That alone would’ve been an incredible birthday.

But then the next day Bill and I left for a seven-day cruise to the Caribbean. I KNOW. Who’s life is this?!

More details on the cruise to come, but here’s what I wore during this momentous month!

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Outfit details

  • Dress: Old Navy
  • Jean jacket: TJ Maxx
  • Shoes: Tieks

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Outfit details

  • Dress: LuLaRoe Amelia (shortened because my lil legs weren’t built for Amelias)
  • Shoes: Payless

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How cute is this 90s kid T-shirt? It was a gift from my cousin and I have no idea where he bought it, but I wanted to include it anyway!

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Outfit details

  • Dress: LuLaRoe Carly
  • Shirt: Marshall’s
  • Shoes: DSW

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Ya girl’s Trixie Mattel outfit. It’s not every day I rock a see-through top, but this was my favorite drag queen’s comedy show, and if you can’t show your bra to a drag queen, who can you show it to?

Outfit details

  • Bra: Cacique
  • Dress: Amazon
  • Shows: Payless

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Target
  • Skirt: Forever 21
  • Shoes: Tieks

Cruise outfits

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Outfit details

  • Body suit: Rainbow
  • Shorts: Rainbow
  • Earrings: 25 Central

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Outfit details (me)

  • Bathing suit: Charlotte Russe
  • Skirt: LuLaRoe Maxi
  • Shoes: Amazon
  • Backpack: Target

Outfit details (Bill)

  • Shirt: Target
  • Shorts: Marshall’s
  • Shoes: Nike (“On discount!”—Bill)
  • Sunglasses: “Those sweet babes are from a store in Honduras.”—Bill

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Outfit details

  • Bathing suit: Charlotte Russe
  • Skirt: Forever 21
  • Shoes: Amazon

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Outfit details

  • Bathing suit (clearly, I lived in this): Charlotte Russe
  • Shorts: Rainbow
  • Shoes: Amazon

And, here’s a peek at what I did. (Does not include cruise photos!)

 

Thanks, May, for being dope. And thank you, Bubby, for making my birthday extra, extra special.

xo.

Things I Did (and Wore) in April 2018

I’m happy. I’ve been feeling like I’m at a great place in my life—with my husband and my dog, of course, who are my lights—but with everything else, too: work, friends, family, me. Things just feel good and I’m trying to savor that feeling. My therapist has been trying to help me be more positive (Lizandra, you’d be so proud) and I feel like it’s been working. Maybe it’s the sunshine or maybe it’s just that life can just be pretty great sometimes. All I know is I want to bask in this.

That said, I haven’t been taking as many outfit photos lately, especially as I’ve been working hard to get my spending under control (thus, less new clothes to show off). But I did nab a couple of photos!

Here are some of the things I wore in April.

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I really like this dress, which is a great combination of loose and cute and also it has pockets which you all know that I love.

Outfit details

  • Dress: 25 Central
  • Leggings: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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It took me a while to wear this outfit as I feel like it’s the most I’ve ever shown off my belly. Let’s be real: I’m fat, and my polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) makes it so that I tend to carry my weight right in my stomach. So, it took me a long time of staring at this dress (a gift from my mom) in my closet before I finally gained the courage to wear it out.

I wore it.

And nothing bad happened!

I even felt pretty good in it. I am always seeing these amazing plus-size beauties on Instagram showing off their belly, so why not me? It may not be an all-the-time thing for me, but I shouldn’t be ashamed of my body. It’s taken me nearly 30 years to realize that, and I definitely still struggle (especially with feelings about my upper arms and back), but I’m working on it.

Outfit details

  • Dress: LuLaRoe (thanks, ma!)
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: DSW
  • Cardigan: Forever 21

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Okay, so, this isn’t a typical “what I wore” photo, but I did wear this makeup, and I loved it. I never wear lipstick, but I think I could! On a lazy Saturday afternoon, I decided to toy around with some of the makeup that’s been piling up in my vanity (a combination of Ipsy gems and my impulse purchases).

Surprisingly, I loved this red matte lip.

Then I decided to venture even further out of the box and go for a red glitter lip, because why not?

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Makeup details

Plus, here are things I did in April, which included:

  • Savoring every magnificent moment of Beychella (and then obsessing over it, talking about it, thinking about it, listening to other people analyze it, and loving it all over again)
  • Listening to new music, including the Cardi B and Chloe x Halle albums
  • Finally meeting up with April, my longtime Tumblr/Twitter friend, as she visited Brown in Providence (I love the internet! Thanks for bringing me such great friends!)
  • Finished a lovely, wonderful project at work called “Building Bridges”, which was aimed at bringing people together across their differences and celebrate the diversity in this big, beautiful world
  • Took advantage of the first nice day in April with my husband and visited our favorite winery
  • Had dinner with Bill and two wonderful (new to me, old to him!) friends
  • Spent some quality time with my friends and their hilarious, adorable kids
  • Ate some pie because of some good work news (which I can share soon!)
  • Petted dogs at work because of course
  • Tried to go to People’s Court (yes, the TV show), failed, and turned the day around by stopping by Milkcraft for some incredible ice cream

 

A great April and I’m ready for May, an upcoming vacation, and turning 30!

xo.

Things I Wore (and Did) in March 2018

I barely documented my outfits in March—and I’m nearly three weeks late in posting—but the month itself included tons of fun opportunities, as well as some challenging ones.

Here’s what I wore!

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Marshall’s
  • Skirt: Forever 21
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: Payless

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OK, so, I was clearly feelin’ this new shirt I bought at Marshall’s. It’s black and white, boat neck, and, on the shoulders, there are rose-gold buttons. What’s not to love?

Outfit details

  • Shirt: Marshall’s
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Marshall’s (Not sure how I feel about it anymore, honestly?)
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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Outfit details

  • Dress: 25 Central… and it has pockets!!!
  • Leggings: Old Navy
  • Boots: Payless

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Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: Payless

Can I just say I’m over black tights/leggings/boots AND READY FOR SUNSHINE?

Here’s a little of what I did last month, including:

  • Visiting friends at my old job
  • Supporting our local drag queens at a drag brunch
  • Contributed to an art exhibit
  • Hosting a dinner party with friends
  • Enjoying brunch with friends (and my adorable nephew, O)
  • Getting TICKETS TO SEE BEYONCE!!!!!
  • Picking up some poetry books
  • Visiting the Smith College bulb show
  • Celebrating our pup’s 6th birthday
  • Spending an incredible date night with my husband eating Mexican food, buying books, and going to a spa
  • Attending a Bianca Del Rio show
  • And, finally, going to dinner at Bocado, an incredible tapas bar in Worcester, Mass.

Life is pretty good.

xo.

Things I Wore (and Did) in January 2018

If January isn’t for snuggling with your dog, then what’s it for, anyway? Looking back on my photos from this month, it’s clear I spent a lot of time inside the house bundled up and petting, snuggling with, and admiring my dog—which is exactly how I like spending my winters.

Other highlights include:

  • Dinners and brunches with friends (I love my friends and I love having friends, which is kind of a new-ish thing for me!)
  • Winning an award for a project I managed at work (!)
  • Attending the Women’s March
  • Going to my first-ever local drag brunch with my husband
  • Taking a Skillshare writing class
  • Working in therapy to try to see things more positively, stick up for myself, please others less, and put myself first

I also got sick with a terrible cold and tried (and failed) to get Hamilton tickets that won’t cost me all 10 of my fingers and toes. You win some; you lose some.

In 2018—which is my 30th year on this earth—I’m doing my best to really focus on the things that are important: the people I love, including myself. I have been working hard this month to treat those close to me with kindness and also to prioritize my own mental and physical health and well-being.

It’s really easy to find excuses not to put yourself first. While I’m quick to tell others, “treat yo’self!” I’ve only tended to use that phrase as a reason to spend money frivolously and eat whatever I felt like. Those were easy ways for me to feel like I was treating myself, but really, I was just kind of giving in to habits that made me feel good in the moment but overall left me troubled. I’m doing my best to reign both of those habits in and to focus on actual, true self-care, which (for me) includes tackling the sometimes tedious or difficult things that are good for me. I think, in addition to living with less fear in 2018, I’m also trying to embrace moderation. We’ll see how it goes.

In all, January was a good month, and I feel like making it through it means that spring is just within reach.

Here’s what I wore!

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(Special appearance by Obi, who is wearing a sweater from my grandma)

Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: Payless
  • Necklace: 25 Central

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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Outfit details

  • Sweater: Old Navy
  • Leggings: Kohl’s
  • Boots: From my mom

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I wore this to the Women’s March, which I felt was the perfect shirt. I didn’t attend last year’s (I was too depressed) but was thrilled when some friends invited me to attend this year, and the march left me feeling really empowered and strong. This is the same one (in pink) that Frank Ocean wore in concert a while back. The shirt is available from Green Box Shop, which is a small business owned by a young woman of color. Check it out! (The one downside about the shirt is it wrinkles really easily, but I love it otherwise!)

Outfit details

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I wore this to drag brunch AND HAD THE TIME OF MY LIFE. It was so much fun to support our local drag queens. Bill and I have already bought tickets to the March brunch!

Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: Payless
  • Earrings: 25 Central

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Is crushed velvet my new favorite thing? It might be. Sue me.

Outfit details

  • Shirt: Target
  • Skirt: LuLaRoe
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com
  • Boots: Payless

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Outfit details

  • Top: Marshall’s
  • Skirt: Forever 21
  • Tights: WeLoveColors.com (why yes, I do have six pairs)
  • Boots: Payless

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Outfit details

  • Blazer: Target
  • Shirt: Charlotte Russe
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

Here’s what I did. (See: snuggling with dog.)

Things I Wore (and Did) in November 2017

I don’t have the perfect life—and some months are harder to get through than others. November was a tough one: my mental health is suffering; my job is, at times, challenging; and the month ended with some particularly disheartening and upsetting family drama.

I think, too often, we all get caught up in depicting a picture-perfect life with beautifully curated photos (that we’re reluctant to admit are only a few among dozens we took before we got the right one to post and share) and cherry-picked anecdotes (that leave out all of the messy, unflattering things that happen in between). We only show parts of our lives, partly because it’s completely unrealistic to share everything and partly because who wants to admit they’re struggling?

But we’re all struggling, at least in some way, and we’ve all got things going on in our lives at any given moment that may be vexing us, hurting us, or challenging us.

I try my best to keep this in mind as I scroll through my social media feeds day after day, seeing only the highlights from the lives of friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances, high school classmates, and celebrities, but sometimes it’s can be tough to keep that in perspective.

So, this is me, reminding myself that it’s all right if everything isn’t all right.

And also reminding myself that there’s nothing wrong with having a highlight reel if for no one but ourselves so that we can look back on the time (which goes by too quickly!) and appreciate the things we have. As someone who struggles with mental illness in the form of anxiety and depression, I often have trouble keeping things in perspective, of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, and sometimes of just making it through the day. But I know that these monthly check-ins, where I look back on the month I’ve just experienced, are providing me with the ability to feel grateful for what I have even on days that feel dark.

With that said, there were many beacons of light that I experienced in November, which I’ve got to remind myself of: a perfect trip to Portsmouth with Bill; the satisfaction of a job well done on a massive project I worked on at work; beautiful sunsets; a rainbow; a book of poems I devoured; warm hot chocolate; a glowing Christmas tree in my wonderful home; a new therapist; a drag show featuring a few of my favorite RuPaul’s Drag Race queens; hundreds of happy moments with Bill; lots of dog kisses from Obi; making new friends at work; thoughtful daily texts from my Grandma; meme-sharing with my wonderful brother; laughter with friends, both online and off.

Amid all of that, here are some of the outfits I wore.

Outfit details

  • Dress: Fashion to Figure (has anyone else felt like their style has completely changed recently?)
  • Leggings: Old Navy
  • Boots: Rainbow

This is of my fave classic winter looks.

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

This dress is so creamy soft!

Outfit details

  • Dress: Ann Taylor via 20 Below Boutique in Portsmouth
  • Tights: We Love Colors
  • Boots: Payless

Outfit details

  • Shirt: Target
  • Scarf: Unsure!
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

Cozy, winter sweaters were what I lived in this month. I’m not a huge fan of the look of this one, but this is the same exact sweater (except for color) as the photo at the end of this post. In that photo, I think the sweater looks great. What gives?

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Old Navy
  • Leggings: Kohl’s
  • Boots: DSW

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Forever 21
  • Leggings: Kohl’s
  • Boots: DSW

Bill called this my “Lorelai Gilmore” look, which delighted me.

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Forever 21
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

Not really an outside-of-the-house outfit, but still! Festive!

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Walmart
  • Leggings: Walmart
  • Sweater boots: Payless

This is one of my new favorite shirts! I added a Hocus Pocus patch, which I nabbed in Portsmouth (the patch itself is made by Laser Brain Patch Co.) to a cheap, black crewneck sweatshirt I grabbed on Amazon for $8. I got a ton of compliments on it and feel super proud even though all I did was iron the patch on.

Outfit details

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

And, here are some of the things I did.

xo.

Portsmouth, NH Might Be My New Favorite Place

Sometimes you fall in love with a city, and that’s what happened with Portsmouth.

Last December, Bill and I decided that we would forgo traditional Christmas gifts and instead try to gift each other memories in the form of weekend getaways. We would each pick a place that we felt the other would enjoy visiting and, as part of the gift, hand-pick a few places to visit that we thought the other would enjoy.

Bill knocked it out of the park.

While I gave him a weekend in Portland, Maine, Bill gave me a weekend in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, a place neither of us had visited before but that we had heard good things about. As part of his gift, Bill actually put together a presentation (!) showing me all of the reasons he thought I’d like it, including quaint gift shops; delicious places to eat; and books, books, and more books.

He knew I would love it and he was right.

It started with breakfast, which technically wasn’t in Portsmouth, but that’s okay. We stopped at Eat, in Springfield, Mass., where I ate a grilled blueberry muffin and drank pumpkin coffee and everything felt right in the world. (There was also a delicious omelette and hash browns but I’m really here for the muffin, guys.)

The drive up was as foliage-filled as it could be. It’s no secret that the foliage this year was subpar, but the drive up to New Hampshire at least gave us a small taste of what the foliage looked like.

And what’s not to love about downtown Portsmouth? It felt like a quintessential New England town, living up to all of its to-be-expected descriptors such as “quaint” and “darling”, while managing to be eclectic, weird, and witchy (yes, witchy).

We visited so many shops that had interesting items for sale and I spent way more money than I intended, but by and large my favorite thing we did all weekend was spend time at the Portsmouth Book and Bar. Its name speaks for itself—it’s part-bar, part-used book store and I was obsessed the moment I walked in. I scoured the store and ended up with an armful of books, enjoyed a glass of wine, ate some delicious food, and Bill taught me how to play chess. I lost, but it was so much fun that I didn’t care. We spent hours there on Sunday morning and I wouldn’t have wanted to spend it anywhere else or with anyone else.

Some of my other Portsmouth favorites:

For Sight-Seeing

  • Portsmouth Athenaeum—A 200-year-old library that every book lover or enthusiast absolutely must visit because oh my god it’s a 200-year-old library!
  • Prescott Park—A beautiful park by the water, which I imagine is even better in the summer. Be sure to stop by the docks (for views of the water) as well as the garden.
  • Pickwick’s at the Banke—Technically a store, but it’s also part of Strawberry Banke Museum and you don’t have to pay to get in. The best description of this place comes from its website: “[A] shopping experience reflecting Portsmouth’s colonial maritime heritage, welcoming visiting schoolchildren as well as museum visitors and local shoppers with a uniquely theatrical shopping experience.” Also, you can buy a giant pickle if that’s the kind of thing that you’re into.

For Shopping

  • Portsmouth Book and Bar—A perfect (YES, perfect!) place for book and booze lovers.
  • Bull Moose—A must-visit music, video, book, and video game store. I scored a “Hocus Pocus” DVD for $5 and the entire “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” series for only $45 and yes, it was worth every penny, thank you.
  • Gus & Ruby’s Letterpress—The shop is a bit pricey, but the wares are really cute, especially if you’re into office supplies like me. My $16 Beyonce mug was absolutely worth the cost. I use it every day!
  • 20 Below Boutique—Who doesn’t love affordable clothes? This is like a TJ Maxx or Marshall’s in that it offers name brand clothes at a steep discount, but without the florescent lights and chaos. I scored two beautiful sweater dresses from Ann Taylor for just $40 total.
  • Diversions Puzzles & Games—If you like games and/or puzzles, definitely stop in here. I’m not even a huge game or puzzle fanatic, but it was so great inside! Bill and I picked up some new dice for our ongoing Dungeons and Dragons game that we play and I also snagged a Harry Potter Christmas puzzle, which we absolutely will be assembling before the holidays.
  • Off Piste—Another pricey, but very cute shop that’s worth checking out. They offer an eclectic mix of things for your home, books, pins/patches, and more.
  • Macro Polo—We wandered into this shop not knowing what to expect and we were laughing at how weird everything inside it was. They offered everything from joke mugs to butterfly hair clips (yes, from the 2000s!) to books to miniature plastic hands. It was great.
  • Pickwicks Mercantile—A very cute shop with books, jewelry, perfumes, and more. I loved it, especially its Harry Potter section.
  • Deadwick’s Ethereal Emporium—A witchy shop featuring all things related to folk magic, crystals, and more. If you love witches or Halloween (which I do), this is worth checking out.

For Food

  • La Maison Navarre—An unintimidating, modern yet warm place to stop for a bite to eat. Bill spotted this place and when he saw that they served crepes, he knew we had to visit. (I love crepes!) We got one with butter and local maple syrup, so it tasted like a pancake. We also got half a dozen macarons and they were delicious!
  • The Friendly Toast—This place has weird decor, but the food is on point. We went for breakfast and we both loved our meals. Bill got MAAAAAAAAAA, Meatloaf Benny and I got the French toast (on cinnamon raisin bread) with caramelized apples and bacon. So good! Service was a little slow, but the food made up for it. Go early to avoid the long wait!

In all, it was an incredible weekend in a fun little city and I can’t wait to go back. Portsmouth, we’ll be seeing you again soon.

 

There were a surprising amount of great signs in Portland, too. Here are some of my favorites.

 

xo.

Things I Wore (and Did) in October 2017

What a great (but busy!) month. In October, I…

  • Decorated pumpkins with friends
  • Decorated pumpkins with Bill
  • Visited my brother in Boston and spent the day at New England Aquarium
  • Spent time with friends
  • Celebrated Bill’s 29th birthday (I outdid myself this year with the gift, which was entirely Star Wars themed and included a weekend of watching all of the Star Wars films—in machete order—and tickets to the midnight showing of the newest movie, out in December)
  • Went to a show featuring RuPaul’s Drag Race queens
  • Celebrated Halloween

It was a good month.

Here are some of the outfits I wore.

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Marshall’s
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: DSW

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(Photobombed by my furry child, Obi.)

Outfit details

  • Sweater: Forever 21
  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Pants: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Tieks

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Outfit details

  • Dress: Fashion to Figure
  • Cardigan: Old Navy
  • Leggings: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Tieks

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: H&M
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Tieks

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Doing my best impression of the 90s with this one.

Outfit details

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Dress: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Tieks

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Outfit details

  • Dress: 25 Central
  • Leggings: Kohl’s (They’re by Lauren Conrad who, as you know, I love!)
  • Boots: DSW

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Sometimes you gotta do a joint outfit pic. We took this pic on the way to dinner for Bill’s birthday! (Photobombed by Obi again, too.)

Outfit details (for me)

  • Dress: Amazon.com
  • Shoes: Tieks

Outfit details (for him)

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Target

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And one more double outfit photo. For a friend’s Halloween party, we went as “casual Princess Leia and Han Solo”!

Outfit details (for me)

  • Dress: Amazon.com
  • Belt: Forever 21
  • Shoes: Payless

Outfit details (for him)

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Vest: Amazon.com
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Boots: Target

And, some things I did this month!

Things I Wore (and Did) in September 2017

September makes me think of new beginnings. For that reason, the month brings me comfort.

I kicked off this month with a visit from my mom, who was in from California. It was so nice to see her, though hard to say goodbye! With her and my grandma, Bill and I visited my little brother in Boston. We wanted to see his new place (beautiful) and also to see him because we don’t get to see him enough. It was a fun day in the city and he was an awesome host.

In September, I also spent time with friends eating good food and drinking wine (obviously), for which I was grateful. Bill and I visited the Big E—him for work, and me to watch him work. The Big E is a giant fair with tons of food and it’s essentially mandatory for everyone in the Connecticut/Western Massachusetts area to attend at least once every year. We did and, for the first time ever, we watched a burger-eating competition. The winner ate 52 burgers in 10 MINUTES. It was so gross and I don’t ever want to watch it again, but what an experience, right? (Fun fact: I was once in a buffalo wing eating competition for charity! Our team lost.)

And, of course, Bill and I visited DragCon NYC and spend the weekend in New York.

Here are some of the outfits I wore.

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The only appropriate thing to wear on Beyonce’s birthday is a #LEMONADE-inspired dress.

Outfit details

  • Dress: Forever 21
  • Shoes: Payless

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I didn’t actually wear this dress yet, but COME ON. How great is it?! In October, Bill and I will be attending a spooky rendition of Sleepy Hollow and I’m hoping to wear this AMAZING Halloween dress.

Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon.com

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Outfit details

  • Blazer: Target
  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Shoes: DSW

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Dress: Old Navy
  • Shoes: A gift from my beautiful grandma

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Aside from my Converse shoes, I’ve never had a pair of sneakers I felt super cute in. This solved that! I splurged on some Nike Rosche Twos, which are stylish and comfortable. (The only problem is they got dirty quick. Wish me luck in trying to clean them!)

Outfit details

  • Shirt: Old Navy
  • Jeans: Old Navy
  • Shoes: Nike

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I love, love, love this RuPaul’s Drag Race dress from RedBubble. It was the perfect outfit for DragCon NYC, and the queens I met all seemed to love it.

Outfit details

  • Dress: RedBubble
  • Jacket: Marshall’s
  • Shoes: DSW

And, some things I did this month!

 

Thanks, September, for being good to me!

xo.

Things I Wore (and Did) in August 2017

Sometimes life goes by faster than you realize and, before you know it, it’s mid-September and you haven’t posted your August outfits yet. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

In truth, August is not one of my favorite months, as by then, summer has gone on a touch too long for me. I get tired of the heat and find myself getting antsy for some cooler weather. Also, politically, life is a real shit show right now, so I’m just trying to make it through.

Work-wise, August was a busy month, a month in which I started to really sink my teeth in at my new job and lead my first big project. It was exciting, terrifying, stressful, and rewarding, and I’m glad to have done it.

Bill and I had a few adventures, too, the most notable being our wonderful weekend getaway with our dog, Obi! We also ate some delicious food (as we always do), celebrated our two year anniversary in our beautiful home, and made the most of the rest of our summer. Independently, I met up with my old colleagues and enjoyed the incredible solar eclipse that reminded me that it’s important to look around and appreciate the world around you every now and then.

Here are some of the things I wore and did, in photos!

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I became obsessed with these dresses in August, so much so that I ended up with three of them in different colors. This hot pink, Barbie-inspired dress is so flattering and easy to wear. I love it!

Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon.com
  • Shoes: Payless

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Outfit details

  • Top: Amazon.com
  • Leggings: Old Navy
  • Shoes: DSW
  • Cranky expression: Yours truly

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This dress is Barbie pink dress’s best friend! Isn’t it lovely in navy, too?

Outfit details

  • Dress: Amazon.com
  • Shoes: Target
  • Necklace: Target

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Not quite a traditional outfit pic, but I do love this dress. It served me so well this summer.

Outfit details

  • Dress: Target
  • Shoes (not pictured): Target

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Outfit details

  • Shirt: LuLaRoe Perfect T
  • Skirt: LuLaRoe Cassie
  • Shoes: DSW

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This is an Eeyore onesie because I deserve it.

Outfit details

  • Eeyore Onesie: Target

And, some things I did (in photo form!).

xo.