Three Years

My blog turned three years old last week. (In case you were wondering, it was March 24th exactly.) I kind of completely forgot about it until now and to be honest, I feel really bad! (Almost as bad as the time I forgot my mom's birthday.) As I tried to figure out what to write to honor such an auspicious occasion, I started digging through some old posts. Laughter, tears, and plenty of cringing ensued. I count myself as so blessed to have a journal of sorts that has documented my struggles, my successes, my lowest points, and my triumphs, albeit I think I may be slightly crazy for sharing it all so publicly. Growing up is a process full of so many peaks and valleys. Self-discovery is a constant battle. It's insane to look back on who I was when I started this blog; to follow myself through breakups, new jobs, moves, adventures, hair colors, and a constantly revolving door of friends-turned-strangers and strangers-turned-friends. Nothing is the same as it was three years ago. I'm in a different city, in a different state, with a new job, a new beau, a new 'do, new friends, and (thankfully) a new wardrobe. As much as I look at this red-haired stranger with disdain for some of the decisions she made, I'm still really proud of who I was and who I've become. 

Marriage Musings: No More Heartbreak

It takes a very special sort of person to fully captivate my heart. Like most 23-year-olds, I've experienced love-at-first-sight, fleeting crushes, failed long-term-relationships, and awkward first dates. I've been through the throes of unrequited love and tend to fall victim to overt romanticization. I once told a guy how I felt about him only to have him respond with, "you know what you should do? You should go to law school." It's only natural for one to approach certain non-platonic relationships with a sense of caution after being let down so many times. The truly tragic thing is that I have more stories like that up my sleeve. My love life hasn't been quite as pitiful as say, Bridget Jones's, but it's had some pretty pathetic moments.

Denim Squared

denim, spring, lookbook, Brandy Melville, Philly, fashion, style,
Nobody can seem to figure out if denim-on-denim is a faux pas or the greatest thing since sliced bread. I kinda like it and have been wearing it lately. I feel like I'm wrapped from head to toe in the fabric that made America great. (How's that for some overdone patriotism?)

Neutrals, Just Neutrals

Philadelphia, fashion, blog, neutrals, felt, hat, balayage, sweater,After a long, tiresome week with a lot of "complications," it was nice to walk around Central Park a bit. I felt very "New York" in my head-to-toe neutrals and aviator sunglasses. (Which were being used more so to cover up my tired eyes than for their actual purpose.)

Bulletproof Dirty Chai Latte

Bulletproof, coffee, chai, latte, organic, keto, Remember my Bulletproof Coffee from a few weeks ago? I've been drinking them every day as a breakfast substitute. Since I've been drinking it every day, I felt that I needed a little variety. Dirty chai soy lattes used to be my daily indulgence so I figured that I'd try to make my own version.

Red for Spring

Philadelphia, fashion, blog, bike, style, balayage, Marc Jacobs, While I'm sad that the cold and the snow is going away, I'm overjoyed that I'm able to ride my bike to work again without having to cover my face or worry about wiping out on ice. It's extra sweet that I'm working days/nights again instead of only overnights so I can actually enjoy the ride. I feel like hardcore cyclists with their fixies and powerful calf muscles must judge me for pedaling down the street in my cruiser (/road bike hybrid) with a wicker basket but I'm lookin' fly so I don't care. Do you like how my bag matches my bike? I didn't do that on purpose. I promise.

Marriage Musings: The Dress

Can we stop saying things like "I SAID YES TO THE DRESS!!!!1 *bride emoji* *heart eyes emoji* #engaged?"* Maybe it's the predictability of it all or the perfunctory vibe that it gives off but it's all very cringe-worthy to me. I promise I'm not some curmudgeonly dark figure wishing ill upon those who have found happiness in the form of wedding dresses-- the phrase "I said yes to the dress!" itself just makes me ill, probably because it was was popularized by the TV show and every episode I've ever watched has been excruciatingly painful.  The very mention of it conjures up images of those girls fake-crying (complete with eye-fanning and mascara running down their faces) until their dads grudgingly write a check for their $20,000.00 wedding dresses while smarmy, attention-crazed stage moms menacingly cackle off-screen. Not exactly the kind of thing one should like to be associated with.

Small little rant aside, I went dress shopping this past weekend. In stark contrast to the "whimsical with a dash of angst" experience that's portrayed on TV, it was a somewhat awkward, very emotional, and overall hilarious outing.

Playlist: SPRING

I miss my little tradition of "curating" seasonal playlists for you guys, which is why I'm bringing it back. While my allergies are making me incredibly sleepy, this weather, the ability to ride my bike to work, and the sudden influx of iced Americanos (which you all know are my jam) have all been giving me life. I'm driving with the windows down again and boy does it feel good. 

Take Care of Your Skin

Wanna hear a secret? I'm really, really bad at taking my makeup off before I go to bed. I always forget about it until I get out of the shower the next morning and my face looks like Chris Crocker's in that classic "LEAVE BRITNEY ALONE." video. I was always extremely blessed with nice, resilient skin-- that is, until recently. Call it "old age" or the endless torment of wildly-whipping bone-chilling winter winds; whatever the reason, my skin has been terrible lately. I never really had a "nighttime routine" but I figured that at this point, I had no choice. To Sephora! After about a month of experimenting, I figured out what works for me, hopefully some parts of it will work for you as well! (Oh, and I know that every other blogger includes awkwardly staged "hey I'm not wearing makeup but I actually am" photos illustrating how they apply products to their skin. My readers are smarter than that so I'll save you that little part. Like I need any more face time on here anyway...)

Marriage Musings: Engaged for a Week (and Already Over It.)

So much happens in the first week after he pops the question. "Have you chosen a date yet?" "Wow that was fast, did you even think about it?" "Can I tell my boyfriend to put the pressure on him?" Why has nobody told me that being #Engaged™ would be so darn exhausting? Between the unsolicited opinions (which everybody seems to have), the agonizing over yet-to-be considered details, and the overload of spam email, I'm ready to just elope. Bridal magazines are full of ugly bridesmaid dresses, overpriced invitations, and impossibly intricate canapés. It seems that unless you have all of these things, your marriage will be a sham. Well you know what, Martha Stewart? None of it interests me in the slightest. Since when did weddings make the shift from "public commitments in front of loved ones" to "Pinterest-fueled creativity competitions?" It could be because being in the wedding industry has jaded me in many ways but I'm kind of "over" weddings. 

Black, Navy, Burgundy

Philadelphia, Philly, fashion, blog, blogger, balayage,
Ah, March: the time of year when absolutely nothing makes sense. Yesterday, I lost an hour of sleep, went for a hike in the snow while wearing a tee shirt, and it was light outside until almost seven o'clock! Just a few days ago, my hands were actually freezing while I was attempting to fasten my bindings in order to snowboard down a hill near my house in the middle of a blizzard. Strange times around here, very strange times. While I will miss the snow, it was so nice to go outside without needing a coat of some sort.

CFW15: Marisol Henriquez

Fashion shows are full of fascinating spectacles. The somewhat-pompous attitude of most in attendance proves extremely conducive to some prime people-watching. Additionally, it's fun to make sassy remarks á la Michael Kors in Project Runway. (Click on that link. You will not be disappointed.) While it's fun to scoff and sneer, sometimes a piece truly wins your heart and you have no more unkind words. Danielle and I both felt that was as soon as Marisol Henriquez's collection took to the runway at Couture Fashion Week. I was taken by the timeless silhouettes, the sultry earth-tones, and the daring use of fringe. We watched, wide-eyed and mystified.

Pieces of Life

Philly, Philadelphia, El, Kurt Vile, mural, Fishtown, fashion, lifestyle, Free People,
A big problem that I have with blogging is that few dare to be transparent anymore. Blogs seem to either read as advertisements or something that's been watered-down and filtered. In the midst of all of this curation, we've forgotten that perfection is kinda bland. I try to make it a point of being open and honest about my not-so-perfect life, which is a learning process. As I was going through some old photos, I laughed to myself at the amount of "outtakes" I have-- you know, the "less than perfect" bits and pieces. If you blog, you know what I mean. The "slightly unflattering angle," or it's slightly-out-of-focus, or you love the photo but it may seem a little "out of place." Yes, I have hard drives full of those. When you look at photos on here, you probably don't think of the test shots of Brenden simply standing there being cold. Danielle takes so many photos but you rarely get to see her face or a little thing we like to call #DanielleDrinkingThings. Behind every moment, there is a moment. 

City in White

Philadelphia, fashion, blog, E.M. Ricchini, lifestyle, style, Philly, blogger
I love the way a fresh layer of snow envelops everything in the city. The way it falls causes even the most unsightly streets appear peaceful and, dare I say, quite beautiful. An eerily resplendent silence replaces the normal sounds-- it's as if everything pauses for a moment and every crunchy step can be heard for miles. Snow days like this come along but once a year.

Weekend Wears

I finally (temporarily) have my weekends back which means family time and day trips. Jenna, Brenden and I spent our Saturday gallivanting around Bucks County. We're an interesting bunch to be around because our conversations have no logical flow whatsoever and we've been known to erupt into roaring laughter with no warning. It's great for us but probably a little terrifying for those privy to it.

Not Another Love Story

My, my, my, this weekend was an eventful one. You may have seen the news but in case you haven't, we're getting married! It's been a whirlwind but I'm so excited to spend the rest of my life with my best friend.