Another Year Older

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I turned 21 on Monday! I’ve been having to remind myself that I am, in fact, now 21 ever since. I love that feeling of birthdays: you always expect to wake up and the world will have shifted, something will be illuminated. You’ll be another year older, and another year wiser. Usually, that doesn’t happen. But with 21, I have to admit, I do feel a little different.

As a society, we build up this birthday so much. Visions of drunken debauchery danced in my head as I planned my quiet, small gatherings with friends.  I even had the thought: am I doing this wrong?  Wow. That is how permeated we’ve become with the idea of a crazy, wild 21st. My friends, thankfully, reminded me that it was my birthday. I could spend it in any way that I saw fit.

So we had a fall celebration, complete with popcorn, candy corn, orange dark chocolate, and homemade dark chocolate yogurt brownies. There might even have been some hot cocoa with Baileys.

I am excited for this year. 20 brought challenges in many forms. 21 is sure to bring more. But I feel like I’m finally beginning to know myself. Even when I don’t know exactly what I want, I can recognize that I’m on a journey, and the present moment is just as important as the coming ones.

I’ll be posting my Bucketlist for Age 21 soon!

Boots Made for Walking

Over the past few years of boot-wearing, I think I’ve tried most of the trends out there. Black weathered suede that collapsed around my ankles? Loved ’em. Uggs? As a Wisconsin girl, I think I’ve owned them in every style and color they’ve got (and let it be known: I stand by the comfort of those boots. Who cares if they’re ugly? I’ll take warm feet over guy’s approval any day.) My new personal favorites are low-heeled, slouchy leather; I have a pair from DSW that steered me through last winter and will, I hope, stay alive through the fall.

But as we’ve moved into the fall season, I have felt an unfamiliar situation developing in my heart: the need for not one, but TWO pairs of new boots. What is this feeling? Having been previously satisfied with one purchase, I’m finding it difficult to justify this new sartorial obsession.  But I can’t help it: my heart is being pulled in two directions, and I must follow both. Eventually.  In the meantime, my eye is continuously peeled for low price options in both my new style favorites!

Women's Mossimo Supply Co. Kessi Crochet Boot - Taupe

These are from Target, and I’ve wanted them for months! Just haven’t managed to take the plunge yet…I wish they were for sale in stores. Added shipping really puts a damper on my online shopping fun.

How pretty are these riding boots from Dillard’s?  I love the shiny leather and the worn look. Can picture myself rushing across the quad, my infinity scarf gently wafting in the breeze, a cup of Starbucks in my hand. These go with just about every sweater/skinny jean combo I have in my head.

 

Falling for Skinnies

Falling for Skinnies

J Crew sweater
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J Crew top
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J Crew j crew shirt
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J Crew flat
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J Crew handbag
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J Crew necklace
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I am absolutely in love with all of the new skinny collections I’ve seen. I cannot wait to stock my closet with chinos and chords in deep, rich colors, and I’m especially interested in the new “coated jegging” trend.  Will I look classy? Or like a Hell’s Angel?  I guess I won’t know until I try! Also a huge fan of the lovely sweaters and long sleeved tops from J. Crew…but will be looking for similar styles at a college girl price tag. Hey, it’s good to dream!

Ode to the Honeycrisp Apple

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I am not sure that I can express my delight upon seeing that honeycrisp apples are now in season. I almost keeled over in Walmart when I saw them nestled, gleaming in their sunset-pink glory, amongst the granny smiths and red delicious.

And then I almost keeled over again when I saw the price tag. At $2.00 a pound, these guys are a little outside of my price range, considering I go through about 9 apples a week. (I feel a bit like an addict: “I can do that, I can make that work! I just won’t buy bread this week; yea, that’s a solid trade off, just give me the apples!!!”)

I forewent them for a few days, rationalizing that it’s early in the season and I can always buy more. But upon visiting our local natural grocery the other day (in search of fresh basil. Which no one has. Sigh.), I saw my favorite natural wonder again, sitting in prominent end cap display. And I caved.

The amount that I savor these guys cannot be compared. It’s almost like dessert: I try and enjoy every single bite, relishing the sweetness and crispness that reminds me, yes, autumn is actually here. And I am in love with it.

Here are a I’m excited to try. The common wisdom is to go with cheaper apples when you’re cooking, but I’m interested in trying some desserts with my favorite variety and seeing if I can taste the difference. Now please excuse me while I go delight in my lunch, in which a Honeycrisp features prominently. Happy fall, everyone!

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Salted Caramel Apple Handpies from Just a Taste

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Crockpot Baked Apples by Skinny Chef

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Upside Down Apple Cinnamon Cake by Behind the Curtain (this looks hard, but is made with Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. Life hacks are beautiful.)