8.30.2012

Such a Stud


I am on the hunt for new flats for NYC. I love heels but let's face it – I am not Carrie Bradshaw. I think these studded flats would be perfect for Fashion week. But since I brought up heels, hellooooo McQueen. I think I love you.

Think that studs are here to stay?

8.29.2012

New Dress for NYFW

I tried this Tracy Reese dress on a few months ago and it fit perfectly. I was in love but it was a little out of my price range and I had to walk away. I received an email notification that all sale items were another 20% off, and I clicked over to find my dress on sale this morning. Since Alaina and I will be going to the Tracy Reese show for NYFW next week (seriously – is this real life?!), I couldn't pass it up. So excited! I saved $224. How Everygirl of me.


Would love to hear about your recent (sale) finds! I love it when this happens! 

8.28.2012

Three months of CrossFit

I started CrossFit over three months ago and wrote this post after my first day at RNCF. I could barely do a push up and rowing even 500 meters left me feeling winded. I have since rowed 5000 meters (which wasn't easy), but did not feel the same exhaustion that I felt on day one. On 7.2 my back squat was 72 lbs. Just 21 days later it was 103. I can do push ups. I did four pull-ups with a blue band last weekend. And last week, I did 50 HSPUs (hand stand push ups) on a box. I couldn't even almost do one when I first started CrossFit back in May.

I have done things I never thought I could or would want to do. I have pushed myself to the point where I was certain I could not go on. I have a sense of balance, strength, and control that I don't think I've ever felt before. I've made some pretty incredible new friends. And for the first time in my adult life, I have a legit workout routine. If that isn't enough, I've lost a few lbs. and all my skinny pants fit again.


I'd love to hear about your workout routine!

8.24.2012

This Week

Please excuse the radio silence this week. I planned on posting every day but it's been nonstop since last weekend! Celebrated a friend's birthday, air and water show, dinner at a friend's house, CrossFit, graphic design work, interviewing new potential interns for The Everygirl, an interview for an upcoming feature on TEG in a magazine (exciting!), two movies in the park, and Chicago Fire's white party.

CrossFit updates: When I first started three months ago I could barely do a push up so HSPUs were out of the question. I started with the modified version (knees on box, you're kind of upside down and go into a push up), and couldn't do one of those. Yesterday, I did FIFTY standing (upside down) on the box. Max push press on 8/15 - 70 lbs. Dead lift - 103 lbs.

Work has been busier than ever and I am doing my best to spend as much time with friends/enjoy being outside before Chicago freezes over. And the next month is going to be crazy. We're hiring new fall interns, I leave for LA next weekend, NYC with Alaina the following weekend (for NYFW!), will be celebrating my 30th (holy crap) the weekend after that, and the last week of the month we are hosting an event for TEG. I am exhausted just thinking about it.

At the Chicago Fire white party with The Everygirl team! (L to R) Mary, Chloe, Me, Alaina, Caitlin, Clarissa.

Air and water show last weekend.

We saw Hugo in the park. Food, wine, fireworks, and good friends. The perfect summer night.

 I signed up for 7 months of CrossFit and bought my first RNCF tank. I feel so official now.
Also, Buddy is perfect.

A peek at my new Serena and Lily bedding.

We have a shoot for TEG tomorrow and I plan on enjoying a little down time Sunday. Hope you all have a lovely weekend!

8.21.2012

In This Neck of the Woods

I love this giraffe from The Animal Print Shop by Sharon Montrose. Having a little trouble choosing between the two, so help a girl out and tell me which one you'd choose.

one or two?

8.20.2012

Lo and Sons GIVEAWAY!


I am so excited to partner with Lo & Sons to give one of my readers the bag of their choice. They sent me the OMG and I absolutely love it. Just leave a comment and tell me which bag you'll choose if you win!

I will announce the winner on Twitter & Facebook, so be sure to follow me there. And you can follow Lo & Sons on Twitter, too. You have until Sunday at 11:59 PM to enter.

8.17.2012

NYFW. It's ON.

Alaina and I will be heading to NYC in early September for New York Fashion Week. We booked our hotel a few weeks ago but it didn't feel real until we booked our flights yesterday. It's happening and I am really excited. It's no secret that I am not a fashion blogger. In fact – I am not that fashionable. But, I love fashion. I have always dreamed of going to NYFW and never thought it would actually happen.

Maybe this toddler would let me borrow her outfit

I know it will probably never happen, but I would love to go to Chanel

We are going to Kate Spade and will be having dinner with Kate Spade's social media manager. (!!!)


I've only been to NYC twice (October '10 and November '11) so I am really looking forward to seeing the city in early September. We fly in the day of Fashion's Night Out and will be attending the rewardStyle party, are booking a few shoots for The Everygirl, and will be meeting with some of our favorite NYC ladies including THE JENNA FAIN. And, we're planning my first trip to Brooklyn! I can't wait for our second trip to NYC. Let the countdown begin!

Speaking of countdowns, I will be 30 one month from today. I know 30 isn't old but I am a little sad to see my 20s end. Just makes me realize how quickly time is flying by. I sure know how to kill a positive post about fashion week, huh?!

Who has been/is going to NYFW? Will you be at the rewardStyle party? If so – see you there! Seriously – is this real life?

I need some new outfits. And maybe a stylist. #helpme

8.16.2012

Putting Myself First

I've been talking about booking a trip to LA since my best friend had a baby one month before the launch of The Everygirl. Harper is now 6.5 months old and I still haven't met her. There have been late nights, weekend shoots, that trip to Boston, graphic design projects, and I moved to a new apartment. Something always seemed to get in the way of my being able to book a trip.


I finally got it together and booked my trip a few weeks ago. I was scheduled to leave today but as the trip came closer, early afternoon Thurs - end of day Monday felt like too much and I started to stress out. I will now be leaving in two weeks instead of this afternoon and will fly back on a Sunday as opposed to Monday. While I hate letting anyone down, I decided to put my needs first.

What have you done to put yourself lately?

8.14.2012

Be Bright Pink


When facing a breast cancer diagnosis eventually leading to a double mastectomy, Giuliana Rencic turned to friend and Bright Pink founder Lindsay Avner. The second Giuliana and Bill's show ended, I logged on to Bright Pink's website to learn more about Lindsay. That same evening, Alaina's sister actually emailed us to say that we had to feature Lindsay on The Everygirl. Great minds.

We got in touch with Lindsay (we actually met her at an event) and asked if she would share her story on The Everygirl. She graciously accepted, a shoot date was set with Jenn of Jennifer Kathryn Photography, and before we knew it we were shooting Lindsay in the offices of Bright Pink.

Sharing Lindsay's story means so much to me. We have all been impacted by breast or ovarian cancer in one way or another, and I am so grateful that Lindsay was willing to share her story with us. Read more about Lindsay on The Everygirl and please take a moment to learn more about BRIGHT PINK.

Be bolder. Make more mistakes. Fail fast and move forward. - Lindsay Avner

The Sequined Parker Dress

Which of these three sequined Parker dresses would you choose? 1, 2, or 3?

8.13.2012

One Year Later

One year ago today, two girls met at a coffee shop to discuss the possibility of working on a project together. Lots of ideas and concepts but one dream – to inspire women.


These two girls are, of course, Alaina and myself. And while we didn't launch The Everygirl until 2.22.12 (almost six months ago), it all began for us exactly one year ago today. We've been to NYC and Boston and have featured some truly remarkable women. And then came Forbes.


It has been a privilege to be behind something that inspires girls every day. We've received emails from girls telling us how The Everygirl has impacted their lives. Girls who have been inspired to follow their dreams or who just want to reach out and say thank you. I am so grateful for each and every email.


I don't think either of us thought about how much time we'd spend together. How much work this would entail (on top of our full time jobs), or what we were getting ourselves in to. I can't believe it's been a year. I've had so much fun working side-by-side with Alaina and look forward to what the next year will bring.



Throughout my 20s, I knew that I wanted to help people. I am so glad that I've been able to do so via The Everygirl. To our interns, editorial assistant, the women we've featured, and our amazing contributors. Thank you for being a part of The Everygirl. And to all of you. Thank you for your support and excitement. Means more to us than you can imagine.

Happy first meeting-iversary, Alaina. Can't believe it's been a year!

8.11.2012

Eddie is BACK!


It's that time again, ladies. The Tory Burch Eddie Ballet flat (the most comfortable shoe I own) is back.

Tell me about your favorite/go to flats.


8.10.2012

Who wants to get married in Paris?

Years ago, I decided that I would like to get married alone on an a beach or someplace equally beautiful and romantic. Paris. Greece. Rome... I don't have the location pinpointed, but a small and intimate wedding has always been my plan. As much as I love my family a friends, I could see getting married without any of them at the wedding. I still want the dress, flowers, and a photographer, but that's it. No bridal party. No crazy expenses. No planning. No pressure.

 

I am not against weddings. This is just what feels right for me and my non-existent future husband.  Two people promising to share their lives with each other in any capacity is a beautiful thing. But the bride gene is one that seems to have skipped me. I am not an "all eyes on me" kind of girl, so I think I might be uncomfortable as a bride in a big wedding. And let's face it – the thought of having this private little moment sounds so incredibly romantic. 



Why am I writing about this today? Well, about a month ago, I spent a few hours walking around Lincoln Park with my friend Jess. We ended up grabbing dinner and started to talk about her upcoming wedding. And then I shared my plans to have a very private ceremony someplace romantic. She wasn't going to tell me her little secret, but she just couldn't hold it in any longer. Congrats Mr. and Mrs. Lively!

images via

Do you plan on having a large wedding or something small and intimate?

8.09.2012

Summer in the City

I am sharing my summer favorites on Channeling Contessa today, and with summer halfway over (sad!) this got me thinking of everything that's still on my summer to do list.

Movie in the park / Ferris Bueller, specifically
Farmer's market
Rent bikes
Fireworks
Run by the lake
Margaritas on a patio
  Go out on the lake
Randolph street market
Street festival 

I still have time. Better get on it. What's on your list?

You may also notice that the blog (and my website) have a new look. I'm done redoing this thing – promise!  And new PR at CrossFit yesterday! 3 rep 70 lb thruster (overhead lift). I have never lifted 70+ lbs overhead.  

Aunt Rose's (she'll be 94 in 2 weeks) thoughts on the issue:
Me: I lifted 70 lbs over my head.
Rosie: You shouldn't do that. You're a woman and not a man. Women will never be as strong as men. It doesn't sound right. What do you want to do? Do you want to lift 200 lbs eventually, or something?

8.08.2012

Let's Trade Lives

It's summer, and I need a little getaway. While it doesn't look like a real vacation is in the cards just yet, I am heading to LA next week and plan on enjoying a little down time. I haven't been back since early December. Been a little busy with a little something known as The Everygirl. I will be heading to Santa Barbara to visit my best friend, and have plans for coffee with Brittney, drinks with Fallon, and lunch with Nicole. Hoping I can meet up with Kim, too! Can't wait.  Until my little break from work, I will be dreaming of this...




And hello, sunbathing frenchies. I love you.

What do you wish you were doing today?

all images via my pinterest

8.07.2012

The OMG

Lo & Sons sent us each an OMG bag last week, and I can't tell you how much I love this thing. It holds everything, attaches to a suitcase for easy travel, and is one classy gym/travel bag. My favorite feature is this little zipper on the side which has a separate built in storage bag for your shoes, keeping the rest of the bag's contents clean. Brilliant. 

Stay tuned – because we may be giving away one of these beauties on The Everygirl later this week.

Enter THEEVERYGIRL at checkout to receive 25% off your next order.

8.06.2012

Where I've Been

Last week was one of those it's only Monday but already feels like Thursday and I think I might lose my mind kind of weeks. In fact – I'm pretty sure I had lost it by Friday. I knew that the only thing to snap me out of it was of course, CrossFit. It has been my saving grace the past (almost) 3 months. I did 45 pull ups with a red and blue band (this is a big deal for me!) and I was able to do one pull up with a blue band. I'm getting there! I felt a million times better by the time the WOD was done and finished my evening with a trip to Whole Foods. I made dinner, watched a movie, and relaxed all evening. It was lovely!

Meet my beautiful new fiddle leaf fig from Jayson Home and Garden. Thank you again, Neil!

We went to the Gilt City lollapalooza party at EnV on Saturday. Since I'm a genius I wore a silk maxi dress in 50,000 degree heat. Fortunately, they had Pinkberry. And I cheated on paleo. Totally worth it.

My dress is Gypsy 05 (old) and we're both wearing Warby Parker sunnies. Also – I need Alaina's  Blair Ritchey bag.

Forgot the best part. We were thisclose to Of Monsters and Men. And they were amazing.

Went to an event Sat night with the lovely Jenn Lake, my good friend Kat, and sweet Caitlin.
You can see Jenn's feature here and Caitlin's home tour here.

Cuddled with Mr. Handsome Sunday morning. Thanks for the headboard, mom! Best housewarming gift ever.

Did a little damage at Lulu with Kat on Sunday afternoon.

I know it looks like I robbed a Lululemon, but in my defense, I work out 4-5 days a week and had one pair of shorts and two tanktops (had four but two are now too large) up until yesterday. So I really needed all these things! I also wear lulu to "the office" almost every day and the quality just can't be beat. 

I took my new lulu out for a 3.4 mile run! I didn't know I could run more than a mile. Go me.

There is nothing like running through the city of Chicago. One of those I can't believe I live here moments.

Finished the night with dinner at my dining table. I'm such a grown-up.

I also finally booked a trip to LA for great aunt Rose's 94th! I used to go back every few months but just haven't had the time since the launch of The Everygirl. I am also going to head to SB to visit my best friend and baby Harper (who is now SIX months old)! I can't wait to squeeze those chubby little thighs!

And on The Everygirl – our first feature with Chef Katie Simmons of Whole Foods! Photography by yours truly.

Feeling refreshed and ready for another work week! Here we go...

8.01.2012

Two Years in Chicago

On August 1, 2010, a confused and somewhat terrified 27 year old girl boarded a plane at LAX and landed at MDW. She had no idea what she was in for. She walked away from an eight year relationship and could not begin to anticipate how much her life would change. She was a creature of habit with a terrible fear of flying. A girl who played it safe by going to college 1.5 hours away from home. She was afraid of change but knew it had to happen. And moving to Chicago was so out of character for her, but she did it.

Gorgeous Chicago skyline

It's been two years. Two incredible, scary, fun, happy, sometimes-lonely-but-wonderful years. There are still days it doesn't feel real. I look out the window and don't know how I ended up here. But I smile every single time I see that gorgeous skyline. This is exactly where I am supposed to be, and I am so grateful for every single moment that I've spent here. I grew in ways I never thought I would.

In many ways I am still that same girl that I used to be. Same values. Same heart. Same awesome personality (ha). Same sense of humor. But I am so much more open than I used to be. Moving to a new city where I knew no one forced me to put myself out there. I have become less neurotic. I have learned a thing or two. I have a good sense of who I am and what I want out of life. And while it hasn't always been easy (it still isn't easy), this move is the greatest thing that I have ever done for myself.

My first blizzard. View from my old apartment that I was too afraid to share because it pinpointed my exact location.

I survived a blizzard, went boating on Lake Michigan, have made some truly wonderful friends, and of course, launched The Everygirl with my business-partner-turned-best-friend Alaina. For the first time in my 20s, I have found and stuck to a workout routine with CrossFit. I cannot imagine where I'd be had I not made this move. Every time I see the skyline or go for a walk by the lake, I am blown away by how beautiful this city is. I live here. People regularly ask why I chose Chicago and I always say the same thing – it seemed like a nice city and my car lease was up. I did not move for a job. There wasn't really a reason that I settled on Chicago other than I knew I needed a change, and it just felt right.

My first Chicago apartment.

Thank you to my friends for making this city feel like home. I may live by myself, but I am definitely not alone. And to this beautiful city that I now call home. Happy two years, Chicago.

Here are a few posts I've written about my move to Chicago:
Journey to Chicago (It's LONG but is one of my favorite posts)
The best thing I ever did
One year in Chicago

And go Bears!