It’s Our Birthday Again

Hello!

I know it sounds silly, but every year, I used to like my birthday to be a little bit of a spectacle. I can’t remember a time when we didn’t have a celebration of some sort and during college (especially for my 21 run) I sometimes celebrated up to three times. It was excessive and even as I’m thinking about this now, I’m getting tired from it. This year, I’ve been preoccupied with so many things going on in my life that I forgot about my birthday until my parents had sent me an email the day before. With a new job, it’s hard to think about anything else.

Last night after a very low-key birthday dinner with Mandi, she asked me what my goals were for year 27. I felt so put on the spot! The thing is, I thought about this question every year and usually had a response – one that would end up on Yow Yow! but not this year. As I woke up in bed this morning, I spent some time reflecting on year 27. What am I actually trying to achieve this year that I haven’t yet achieved in other years and the first thing that came to mind was really quite simple: self-care. It’s a thought that bounces around in the back of my head from time to time, but during my recent time off, it was an idea that I stuck to. Because I had the time off work, I made a concentrated effort to take care of myself in more ways than one. I had close friends visit me from out of town. I spent time outdoors and getting out of my home to try new things. I flexed my creative muscles and spent more time writing on the blog than I ever have  – probably since college. I treated myself to a lot of things – facials, boba, candles, food, sleeping in. I exercised regularly and came up with a healthy daily routine to take care of my mind and my body. In my last days of being 26, I was already doing this and now I want to keep it up going into 27.

As you’ve been following me, you’ve probably noticed a lot more weddings and bachelorette parties in my life. I could not be happier for all of my friends and their incredible news. G just announced recently that she was expecting – the first out of all my friends that I am closest with! The news is always overwhelming, but so full of joy and I can’t wait until I’m in their place and sharing that kind of news with my friends, family, and Yow Yow! I used to wonder as a kid and a teenager when all of these life changes would happen to me, but now at 27, I’m glad to just be having a job that I enjoy, great company in my life, and the ability to be able to stand on my own two feet right now. Everything else will fall into place when it needs to. <3

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Casting JonBenet

JonBenet Ramsey and I were the same age so when the story broke out about her death, I was really too young to process it. To this day, even though there was sort of closure, there wasn’t really. People are still making documentaries about it and sharing their theories so naturally, this is one of those cases that I also never let go. I’m still very fascinated by all of it and often wonder what JonBenet’s life would have been like today had this not happened to her and why it seems like everyone close to her involved was let off the hook. This trailer was incredibly haunting to me, but still captivating enough that I might log into my Netflix account (which I do less than a handful of times a year) to watch this when it premiers on April 28th.

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Snaps for a Snapshot

Who: Kiernan Shipka

Wearing: Rosie Assoulin

Where: Wednesday screening of “The Blackcoat’s Daughter” in New York City

So no, florals for spring isn’t necessarily groundbreaking, but they are when you’re wearing them the way Kiernan is. I love that this isn’t just a floral printed dress and instead the florals are full immersed into the shape of this dress. Don’t even get us started on those straps. We love it.

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Black, White, and Witchy

Hat – Nordstrom / Sweater – Madewell / Dress – Aritzia

For my body type, normally this outfit wouldn’t be considered the most flattering, but I think I’ve now reached this point in my life with my style that I will still wear what I want to wear regardless of the fact. Generally, for those that are more petite, anything close to a maxi (ish) dress can be a little hard to pull off, but you all know how much I love pairing my white and black pieces. The Aritzia dress is one that I typically wear during the summer and has an open back, but since it was fall, I decided to throw a sweater on top of it and add the hat to give it more dimension. This felt like a very natural and comfortable look for me. I wore this to the office, but I could see myself wearing this for a coffee date or even a day of errands.

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What We’re Listening to This Weekend:

Since the beginning of the year, it feels like nearly every weekend has been jam packed. Last weekend, we were in San Diego and next weekend we’re headed to Tahoe. Today, though, is one of those Saturdays that I get to have to myself… until we celebrate our birthday later on this evening. I’m unwinding right now on my couch with Chipotle on my left, Mango Green tea on my right, and with a soundtrack to Quadron. It’s not often that I find myself falling in love with whole albums, but when we do have one of those, we prefer to highlight them in “What We’re Listening to This Weekend.” I can listen to the entire album from start to finish and after it ends, I’ll start it back from the top. Kevin was actually the person that introduced me to Quadron and I had a chance to see her in concert when she opened for Mayer Hawthorne back in 2014. Not much music has been released since this album, but we’re okay with listening to this to hold us over for the time being. She’s also making music under the name Coco O.

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Nike Air Max 95 Candle

Stop what you’re doing. Look at this candle. BLESS this Nike candle and its existence. This is the greatest thing I have seen all day.

Now only if we could find a cute little holder for it to sit on…and of course, never light it ever.

Air Max Day actually falls on March 26th and to commemorate this special day, WHAT THE SHAPE released this amazing piece. These candles are available in pink, yellow, and white. We’ll take all 3, please. If you’d like to be the owner of this, you can visit their Facebook page to make a purchase.

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When You Say the Very Wrong Thing

The incident was so awkward that Kristi’s people had to release this statement:

Yamaguchi’s rep has issued the following statement to E!, “Kristi loves Nancy and has nothing but respect for her. No ill will was intended with the tweet and Nancy herself has received and commented on the well wishes that were sent. Kristi is finding the reactions on social media humorous but unfortunately for those who want it to have been shady, that’s not the case.”

Wow, face palm.

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Collective Retreats

I didn’t grow up being much of a camper or an outdoorsy person for that matter. I’m sure none of you are surprised to learn that. However, in college I branched out a bit and went on a few retreats and found myself really enjoying this time to myself in a secluded environment outside of the city. I liked the freedom of being able to do whatever I wanted and being at peace with my surroundings. As an adult, it’s still something I think about and from time to time, I do research retreats for adults. I never had an opportunity to do the 3-5 day silent retreat in college and that is still one of my biggest regrets!

I recently stumbled across “Collective Retreats,” which resembles what we all know today as “glamping,” but reminds me of the experience I once had. It may not be the tent that you grew up with, but it’s okay to think of it as an updated version of it. These tents have a cozy bed inside, wood floors, and a neighboring bathroom in a teepee. Toilet and shower included! I know what you’re thinking, how does this all work? I’m still trying to figure it out myself. Collective Retreats is able to work because they reach out to various landowners that happen to have these wide open private spaces that make for the perfect getaway. The company then turns these into makeshift tent lodges for a small period of time allowing guests to get the desired vacation they are hoping for. Since these plots of land are so large, they often will include anywhere from 5-15 furnished tents, but all within a reasonable distance from each other so that you can still feel like you are on your own. If you decide that you want the company of other retreaters, there is a common shared space for everyone to hang out together…and in which you will receive chef-prepared meals. Camping… just like when you were a kid!

Collective Retreats is currently available in Yellowstone in Vail with plans to expand out to Sonoma, Hudson Valley, and Hill Country.

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Little Bandana

Top – Brandy Melville / Pants – Uniqlo / Bracelet – Madewell / Bandana – Mandi’s wedding / Heels – Vince Camuto

Even though it’s 2017, it’s a little silly to me that there is still this stigma to wearing all black. I would say 60-68% of my wardrobe is made up of black pieces and I’m totally fine with that. However, sometimes when I would go to work, people still have this desire to make a comment to me about going to a funeral or ask if I am unhappy that day. Why can’t I just wear black because it’s a classic color and super chic? :)

I remembered getting up this day and feeling sort of satisfied with this look. I couldn’t shake the feeling that it was missing something though and I wasn’t going to be able to walk out the door without something more. I added the bracelet. Purchased from Madewell a few years back, I still really love this piece even though it has progressively gotten “worn” over time and you can tell. At Mandi’s wedding, she gifted everyone with a welcome package, which I think is such a nice treat! I’m going to be discussing this a little bit more in an upcoming post about the five things I loved the most about Mandi’s wedding, but will provide some details here. Every guest received a jar of trail mix waiting for them in their cabin and each mason jar was wrapped with a perfect forest green bandana. Now you may remember that I went through a red bandana phase last spring. We’re still wearing it by the way! But this green one is a little bit smaller, but large enough to fit around my neck. It really was the perfect accessory to complete this look.

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Song of the Day

Grace Mitchell – NoLo

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Would You Wear It?

Doesn’t this look like it belongs in a costume shop?! For their Spring/Summer 2017 collection, Gucci released this very quirky sandal with built-in latex socks. If you don’t mind wearing something that gives you a little bit of a plastic sheen, then this is a perfect fit. I actually would love to see this on a person for comparison, however, looking at it in a photo doesn’t make it seem so wearable, right? For a cool $1,190 USD, this can be all yours though!

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“Do What You Can’t” By Casey Neistat

It’s the day before I start my new job and as you may have guessed, I definitely have those nervous feelings in the pit of my stomach. We probably won’t even be able to sleep tonight so to prepare myself, I was thinking about going to bed two hours earlier, but not before I posted this video. To this day, I still look at inspirational quotes and messages and they make me feel alright for a few seconds or so – isn’t that what “Sunday Words” on Yow Yow! is all about? This is actually sort of better than all of those things though especially if you’re someone that takes visual and video form better. It’s simple. It’s relatable and it’s pretty much ALL of us. It’s crazy to think that at some point in our lives someone has told us “you can’t.” Why do people have to be such jerks? It’s 2017 and I recently had a former colleague tell me to my face that they thought I wasn’t good enough to do something. I’m not even lying to you. I had to look around the room to make sure that I was the only one being spoken to and just because you say it with a grin doesn’t mean what you’re saying is right.

So 2017 is still full of jerks, but you know what? 2017 is also a time where you can really do whatever you want. There are so many creatives in this world – so many people like YOU who want to do good and make things happen. Daily, I get to read stories about people who have an idea and who just run with it without knowing the next step and without having a whole lot of experience. You just can’t quit.

The most common thing I hear is how you can do something while still having a full time job. Hi, I’m right here with you. Yow Yow! will probably forever be a side hustle for me. :) That thing that you love – that you want to pursue because you know it will bring you joy – that’s going to become your side hustle. When you’re not working your day job, throw everything you have into that one thing and someday if you keep working at it, that thing will just get better and better, I promise.

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