Monthly Archives: August 2014

5 Things :: my favorite school holidays

There are 175 more days of school.

I want out now.

Here are my 5 favorite school holidays. They will become my saving grace.

  1. Thanksgiving – One glorious week instead of just the typical Thursday/Friday long weekend.
  2. President’s Day – Some schools get 2 three-day weekends. We get 1 four-day weekend. Woo hoo!
  3. Winter break – Two weeks off. ‘Nuff said.
  4. Spring break – Actually ended up occurring after Easter Sunday this year. Not that I’m particularly religious, but my kids are still gullible enough to want the Easter bunny to come early in the morning and I need the following day to recuperate.
  5. Summer – June 5th spells freedom.

Week in review – You go, Rococo!

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Treasure Tuesday :: which probably needs a new name

Back by popular demand (or by the request of two people), I give you Treasure Tuesday’s Photo Scavenger Hunt. If you recall, this is a series conceived by Greenthumb, and I’d interpreted it differently during my Summer Edition posts. I’ve decided to follow her protocol for the regular year, giving you all 12 photos in one post.

Please enjoy the lovely pictures while I recuperate from a rather harrowing first week of school. And that’s a story for another day.

Peace, W is for?, Ball – I’d toyed with doing this feature as-is from summer so here was the post that addressed the first three challenges.

Luggage – I thought this was going to be the most problematic one since I hardly ever travel, but then the hubs surprised me with a spontaneous, impromptu trip to Vegas for our anniversary et voilà! (We stayed at the Golden Nugget’s Gold Club suite; I want my bedroom at home to be exactly like this!)



Sunglasses – On the way to Vegas, I found the perfect opportunity for an arty sunnies shot. I tried different filters but ended up choosing this photo in its undiluted glory.



5pm – The Grotto at the Nugget is our fave eatery in Vegas. Excellent service, excellent ambiance and just an elevator ride down from our room so free license to imbibe. And it was blessedly free of people at 5pm for our anniversary dinner so we got even better, more personal service.



Glitter – View from our hotel room. (Please pardon the ghostly reflection). We were confounded by that building across the way, glitter lights notwithstanding, for the interim of our stay, and it wasn’t until we got back and I spoke with a colleague who’s a Vegas veteran that I found out The D is the old Fitzgerald’s casino revamped.



Everyday – Okay, enough with the Vegas photos. This is my everyday. My two bed hogs. Like master, like dog. Sigh. They’re just lucky I’m an edge sleeper and we bought a king-sized bed.



Under – Did you really think you were going to escape a Scavenger Hunt post without an Aly photo?



On your shelf – My school shelf, that is. That’s where I now keep my extensive manga collection since the hubs is slowly taking away my storage at home. There are benefits to this verdammt new building after all.

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Something you do everyday – Breakfast on the go? Absolutely, now that I’m back at work. This is a recipe a colleague shared with me. It’s amazingly yummy and packed with loads of nutrients and goodness. Now, I make huge batches over the weekend, enough to fill 6 Mason jars which I then freeze and take out the night before for a portable meal the following day.

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Centered – I shall have to remember this quote during the rest of my 176 days of school. I think I’m gonna need it to keep my sanity.


Sorry for the dearth of pithy commentary. I write this on a Friday after the aforementioned harrowing first week of school. I promise to be more engaging next time. While we wait for my equilibrium to find itself, anyone wanna take a stab at renaming this feature since it probably won’t always fall on a Tuesday regularly? Please and thank you…

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OOTD :: of boots, comfort, and not a Christmas tree




When I think of comfort shoes, I always come back to my cowboy boots.

They’re broken in, scuffed and stretched, and they mold to my feet the way really good quality leather should.

Unfortunately, they stop at the largest part of my calves, and proportion rules dictate that to be a no-no. I’m already fun-sized as it is and cutting me off at this unfortunate point of my silhouette just makes me look visually shorter and stumpier.

Usually, I can mitigate this by going monochrome and wearing similar colored bottoms. Or I just wear them under boot-cut jeans and enjoy comfort over aesthetic. But this really limits me to only wearing pants with these boots. And I don’t do limits.

So today, I’m playing my Woman of a Certain Age card and I’m throwing style protocol out the window. I’ve always loved the look of a flirty dress toughened up with a pair of cowboy boots and I’m going for it. I’m also ignoring the voice in me that always screams “Christmas tree!” when I pair red and green because if I’m going whole hog on the comfort dressing, I want to swallow myself up in a boyfriend cardi and this one is my fave.

This may not be my most fashion-forward ensemble and it may look a bit dated – 80s grunge meets 90s incongruity? – but it’s Friday and I actually want to smile when I stride today.

:: Just the facts, ma’am ::
Dress – Ross
Cardi – Old Navy
Boots – Ariat

:: Linking ::
Fashion Friday @ All Things Chic

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OOTD :: of impossible dresses and Tim Gunn




This dress was made with a self-tie belt but didn’t come with it when I purchased it on eBay.

No matter, since I don’t do belts anyway, but without it, the dress was a shapeless sack. Enter my intrepid tailor who thought it could be remade into a shift and whacked off a good 4-5 inches all over. I thanked her kindly and paid the fee but was still unsatisfied when I put it on because I feel she didn’t whack off enough.

Still, I kept the dress instead of culling it because now I’d invested in it by having it tailored. Don’t you hate it when that happens?

Now, of course, I feel tethered to it because it’s part of my 50 Dresses collection and, in the immortal words of Tim Gunn, I was compelled to make it work. I knew my only option was to use a completer piece, but which one? The dress’s puffy, three-quarter, elasticized sleeves made it unwieldy under a blazer. Its tent-like cut made it bunchy under a cardigan. I’d already used my denim vest yesterday.

I was this close to throwing it in the cull pile after all and renaming my challenge 49 Dresses, when I spotted these sandals from Payless, one of my final purchases of the summer before I clamped down with my spending fast. It so happens that the color of the shoe was the exact shade of my utility vest.

Matchy-matchy? Perhaps. But book-ending the dress with the olive tones helped mitigate its blowsiness, giving it a more serious air. Or so I’m telling myself so I can feel good about it. Of course, if any of you have a different way for me to save this dress, then please comment below. Just no belting advice, please. My non-existent torso refuses to play nice with belts.

:: Just the facts, ma’am ::
Dress – The Webster @ Target
Wedges – Payless
Necklace – it’s from high school, yo!

:: Linking ::
52 Pick-me-up @ SpyGirl
Sophisticated Style @ Fashionably Employed

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