$100 More Or Less: Happy Dress Sad Girl

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I started a new feature a few weeks ago in which I pull together an entire outfit for around $100 ($125 being the max). This is one of those outfits. I realize that, of course, you can create an outfit for around $100 using cheaper brands or thrift store pieces. However, my theory is that you can shop anywhere on a budget (including the mentions above, but also higher priced retailers) and still create a great outfit.

If you read my post, “You Can’t Cry In Costco”, then you know I had a sad day a bit ago. It happens. I found a swivel chair that made all of the difference. This is what I was wearing that day.

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I love how the curves of the crescent moon necklace fit perfectly with the swirly pattern of my tears this dress.

I had not realized that I was not really smiling for the camera in this outfit photo session. I just did not have it in me on this day. I am really bad at needless dramatics faking it.

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However, the price I paid for this outfit should have lifted my spirits. Just a little. This outfit post is more a post to convey my love of waiting for an item to hit sale instead of indulging in the immediate satisfaction of full price. I do the latter, too. Sometimes I just cannot help it (as was the case with this dress). But the outfit shown here was my ultimate showcase of self restraint. I waited until the items hit rock bottom prices until I pounced.

Or I lucked into them…

Either way is probably a little right.

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I feel like this dress is very reminiscent of a circus. I think it is the stripes, sequins, and over-the-top sleeves. All of which I love. Although on this day I guess I was playing the very sad clown.

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Outfit Breakdown:

Anthropologie Sunpass Dress (now sold out): I paid $30 Original Price $198
Anthropologie Nazare Sandals (now sold out): I paid $24 Original Price $118
Anthropologie Crescent Necklace (now sold out): I paid $10 Original Price $42
Forever 21 Gold Cuff: $6

Total Spent: $70
Retail Price: $364

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What do you wear on sad days? Do you have an item in your closet that showcases your ultimate shopping self restraint? Do you own this dress? How else do you style it? And don’t worry, the sad day passed, today is fresh and new. I am hoping it is a happy one for both me and you. : ).

*this post was edited using the app VSO filters at C2 at level 3, temperature at level 3, and contrast at level 2.

Overheard in August 2014

I am an eavesdropper. A shusher of current company. A nosey woman who wants to know about every single character in the world or at least the interesting things that they say. But I do not want them to tell me. I want to hear their world myself. Even a secret snippet of it:

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I was out shopping and I got to talking with a dressing room attendant. He was a smiling, lanky young man with a cheerful soul so often found mixed with the mischievous. His spirit animal would have been a monkey and I happily watched him working for a bit. He was in high school. I did not go to a high school that contained a lot of vanity. No “Heathers” or “Mean Girls” scenarios. Just down to Earth kids, so when I sat there and witnessed this exchange I was both equal parts intrigued and equal parts sad:

A young man came to the dressing room with a singular top to try on. He had a stiff stocky build and shaggy hair. His spirit animal on first glance would be an ox. However, he had an air of disdain radiating from his curled lip not typically found in that animal.

“Do you want to try that on?” Chirped the friendly young man.

The ox nodded once.

“Okay! Hey! Do you go to So and So High School?” Questioned the nice young man.

Another reluctant nod.

“I thought so! You hang out with Queen A and King B, right?”

This time the nod was accompanied by a tight lip, followed by a sneer. This was getting much too personal for the ox. He didn’t like the monkey being that familiar with him.

The monkey could sense the change, but did not alter his attitude. “Okay! Well, just let me know if you need anything.”

I did not see the stiff and popular young man leave, I only witnessed the nice young man rehanging up the top and putting it away. It made me really question, what makes someone popular? Why is it sometimes not the right person? And would I ever want to go back to high school? The answer to the first two questions are unknown to me, but the last question, I know the answer to and it is a definitive shaking of my head.

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We are not done with the dressing room attendant. Right now he is our young hero. Sweet and optimistic. I wonder how you will feel about him as we watch him a bit longer:

The young man turned to my son, “What school are you going to? Are you back to school shopping?”

When my son told him the name of the middle school and that, yes, he was back to school shopping, the boy said, “I have not started shopping. I get my first paycheck this Friday. I am so excited!” And “I went to that school! What teachers did you get?”

I congratulated the happy boy on his first job and my son rattled off the two names of his main teachers.

The boy said, “Oh! I think I had Mrs. Teacher. Is she really old?”

I started to respond, “no,” but then caught myself and laughed, “Well, no, she is not old, but she might be to you. She is in her mid-forties.”

The young man chucked, “Yea, that is getting up there. Forty is definitely getting up there,” he nonchalantly stated to the almost forty year old mom.

“But I am only sixteen, so anything over thirty is old to me.”

Did you know monkeys threw daggers?

Yea, me neither. But they do. Right to your heart. Made of funny words, of course. And only at people over thirty.

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Do you remember Predict-A-Pen? Well, when my son had his birthday party to celebrate turning eleven, he had a few friends over. One of the friends found my Predict-A-Pen (and my social security number, the break-up letter from my fourteen year old boyfriend, my diamond earring I lost ten years ago and my brain). I overheard him asking it a few questions:

“Will we meet any foxy ladies in junior high school?”

Not for a million dollars.

“Will we meet any foxy blondes?”

If you’re lucky.

“Will we meet any foxy brunettes?”

Dude. No way.

“Will any of us marry a foxy lady?”

It’s unclear. Ask again.

“Will…”

I love Predict-A-Pen.

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I was at the local grocery store checking out with my staples to make dinner when the young cashier looked at me and smiled. “You look like Taylor Dfvrvsasuioooo,” she said. Well, she did not really say that last name, but I could not hear what she said or who she thought I looked like.

As the line was long, I just said, “thank you.”

Then she tried to reassure me, “Only you look better, because you are not scowling.”

I again thanked her, but I was beginning to wonder if she was really giving me a compliment.

I left the grocery store and went home. I approached my family sitting at the breakfast table. “A girl at the grocery store said I looked like someone only not scowling. Who could that be?”

My husband and daughter began to ponder the question. Who do I look like, only not scowling? My son looked me up and down, his forehead furrowed with thought, then he beamed as the answer came to him, “I know! Professor McGonagall!”

The kid might want to practice his compliments if he wants to meet any foxy ladies in the future.

*I think the girl must have said Taylor Momsen, although it could have been Professor McGonagall, my hearing might be going and my wand was sticking out of my purse.

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On Monday, I was at a local restaurant waiting for my to-go lunch order. I overheard a manager speaking to an employee as they huddled together over a packet of rumpled papers.

“This new menu goes up on Wednesday.”

The manager gave the papers over to the employee and started to walk away. “I will just look them over on Wednesday,” he stated.

The employee looked up, “So it will be fresh in your mind?”

The manager chuckled, “No. I am just hoping I will be less drunk on Wednesday than I am today.”

“Is it left over from Friday?” the employee, who was working on Monday, asked.

The manager shook his head, no. “Every day is Friday to me,” he responded.

If you went into that restaurant on Wednesday to eat off of that new menu and your order was messed up… It is because it was Friday.

Have you overheard anything good this month? Anything worth sharing?

*If you missed it, here is a link to last month’s Overheard in July 2014.

Keepin’ It Real: August 2014

So, to tell you exactly where my mind has been this month (or how much sine wine was consumed before writing this oos5 post), I actually wrote 2004 instead of 2014 at first, for the title of this post. This month has been equal parts flying by and equal parts molasses. Maybe I should describe it as flying through molasses?

August summed up:

Kids started school. Son turned eleven. Daughter got braces off. Bought tickets to see Def Leopard in the fall (whoot! Now what to wear?!). Went over budget. Darn popbacks. Darn fabulous markdowns at Anthropologie. And darn you, Free People for your sales. Bought way, way too much during all of these amazing sale promotions, including this dress, this dress and this top. Spanked self. Cannot even look at a single sock in September. Started saving all of the 5′s and 1′s accumulated at the end of each week for kids’ college in addition to the monthly stipend we deposit for each child. Will be curious to see how much it adds up to at the end of a year. Tried a new pub. Liked it. Have been going twice a week to the chiropractor after migraines revealed neck injury from ten years ago has manifested itself into a neck that no longer curves. Reveled in Genevieve’s Renovation on HGTV and then wondered if anyone else was watching. Became addicted to Jersey Belle after swearing off any more reality t.v. (but she might adopt a baby from a woman she met on the street). Wrote letter to TV Land because I can no longer function without my nightly dose of “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Cursed at the television after True Blood’s horrendous series finale. Apparently I watch too much t.v. Went to every Albertson’s in a thirty mile radius (as a date with my husband. I am a good time) and bought all of their discontinued frozen manicotti (check a store near you. This stuff is fabulous for a quick meal. Just throw in a pan with a jar of sauce and bake for an hour. Located near frozen garlic bread if the store still has it. Sorry peeps near me. You’ll just have to come over for dinner). Now need a stand alone freezer for my hoarding tendencies. Apparently stopped using pronouns.

I am obsessed with funny Family Feud moments found on Pinterest. Oh my goodness! You must read this one about Honey Boo Boo’s family.

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I gained ten pounds this summer and have found it ridiculously hard to care. I also took some awful pictures having nothing to do with the weight gain and everything to do with my face.

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On Friday I went to the chiropractor. He was having this young man shadow him… The hottest young man I ever did see. My husband said he could be the poster child for doctors (he was with me). I learned I am still smooth with my moves at the age of thirty seven because when he walked down the hall towards us, I hit my head on the wall behind me loud enough for those piercing blue eyes to find mine as I screamed in pain after the resonating bang of the impact had everyone look up, so startled was I by gleaming white teeth and perfect genes. Then I impressed him by having my chiropractor show him my xrays of the ribs growing from my neck.

I know how to impress a man.

Isn’t that how it is done these days? Forget cleavage. Pssst… You wanna see my neck ribs?

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Then my husband (ahem. Sorry dear) and I went to breakfast but as we were walking up to the restaurant I heard a dog whimpering and barking in a panic in a locked car. It was all ready ninety degrees outside. The windows were rolled up with just room enough for a flat palm to pass through one of them equating to no breeze. So, I waited to see if anyone was going to come out of any shops. Long story short, they didn’t and I called the authorities. I found the couple sitting in a restaurant (after asking every table.) finishing their breakfast completely carefree. I had a few choice words for them, especially when the woman told me it had only been thirty minutes as she lingered over her coffee. I told her, “You are a mean, mean person to be that cruel.” The authorities (a cop car and animal control, because it is illegal in California to leave your dog locked in a car) were waiting for the couple outside surrounding the car along with a crowd of angry people. There had been other people who had seen and heard the dog as they passed by and were waiting to see if they needed to break a window to get it out. I hated that it had to come to that. I left before the confrontation. I felt bad for calling, but I really did not want the dog to die and I want them to know that they cannot do that. I did not stay to see the finale because I know the end result would have been me in tears possibly in handcuffs when I tried to snatch the dog (it was a Murphy dog). I was shaking for hours afterwards from the situation.

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I made a chocolate cake with an unexpected ingredient and I cannot wait to share it. And oatmeal chocolate chip bars!… I do not know why I gained ten pounds this summer.

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I purchased three vials of pepper spray from a traveling salesman and do not exactly know where to keep them. Or how to explain to my husband I bought a vast amount of pepper spray from a traveling salesman.

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Books I am currently reading. And why I am sometimes behind in my comments. And emails. And life.

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I cannot believe it is almost fall. In Southern California it is hard to keep track of the seasons. It is hot, hotter, not as hot, then cool but not cold. As someone who chronicles outfits this can be tricky. But I am started to get excited for the changing weather, however slight or extreme it decides to fall. I have enough boots and jeans. The staples I am looking for, on clearance, will be a leather jacket and black boots. I also want to add in some more pencil skirts because my husband likes them so much. And I am loving this vest in grey and purple.

September Posts I have in the works:

Pee Wee Herman Ruined My Singing Career
Bohemian Girl Means Business
Where’s The Gnome?
Creamy Green Chile Enchilada Casserole
It’s A Golden Age Eyelet Believe

What was your favorite part about August? Was your month molasses or flying by? Did you participate in any Labor Day Sales?

*If you missed July’s Keepin’ It Real, you can find it here.

There And Back Again

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I have this Anthropologie Ponte Bell Skirt in black and it is one of my favorites. When more colors came out, I added them all to my wishlist with the hope of one day scoring one at a huge discount. In July, I finally was able to acquire one more in the color I had been wanting the most, this really pretty green. I got it for 75% off. The green reminds me of hobbits.

Well, pretty much everything reminds me of hobbits.

It is a bit of a problem.

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When I take this skirt off, it stands up all by itself.

It is as though Gandalf granted it some mysterious skirt power.

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I paired my skirt with a simple dress from Target. This skirt is short, so I feel better knowing that I have extra coverage underneath it. I could have used a striped shirt, goodness knows I have enough, but I was happy with this solution. I like that the back of the dress has a zipper like the back of this skirt.

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We found the neatest gully in the middle of the desert. I want to walk down there one day for pictures. There could be hobbits! But my husband says that I will not be able to get back up.

I think he is forgetting that I am wearing a magic skirt.

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The earrings are from Nordstrom Rack. The bracelet is Free People’s Hammered Stacked Cuff. The shoes are Anthropologie’s Almanac Sandals. The invisible necklace made from the remnants of second breakfast is courtesy of my imagination.

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Do you have anything in your closet that reminds you of your favorite movie? Have you scored any popbacks lately? I have a post coming up soon with some of my recent best finds.

*Today is typically reserved for the feature “It’s The Little Things.” Unfortunately, life got in the way of me finishing pictures for it today. It has been hard adjusting to this back to school thing. The feature should resume next week. Until then, I need to rid myself of this outfit photo backlog.

These photos were edited using the Afterlife App’s forrest filter at 55%.