Friday, July 29, 2011

Summer Work Clothes - How to Look Appropriate When It's Hot Out

     Some of you might remember my Winter Work Clothes blog post from back in February. 
     Well, I decided to make one for this glorious season as well, because I find I don't have very many professioanl summer clothes. I've never really had an office job in the summer before, so I haven't needed to get any clothes and since this is hopefully the last summer I'll ever have to work (since teachers get that nice thing called summer holidays) I really can't justify buying any. 
     However, although my office building is "air-conditioned," it's also over 50 years old so it can get a little hot, and there is NO WAY I am wearing long dress pants and tight button up shirts to work every day. So mainly I've been wearing dresses and skirts, leggings and tunics, tank tops and shrugs. 
     Luckily my office doesn't have a very strict dress code (it's "business casual") but I find myself repeating outfits quite a lot so I decided to make another one of these types of posts to inspire myself and you. Just like before I took some inspiration from photos I found online, and then added my own twist to them. Enjoy!

# 1

This is a simple look. A nice, patterned dress. It's light, comfy, and cool. 

My dress isn't patterned but it is bright purple (which you can't tell from this horrible lighting. sorry.) The perfect blank canvas for all your favourite summer accessories - jewellry, bag, sunglasses, sandals. Whatever you want the focus of your outfit to be, this dress is a nice base to start from. Plus, it's so easy to get dressed in the morning when you only have to slip on one thing!

 # 2
I love the laid-back feel of this look, the neutral colour, and the summery scarf. I always think of scarves as fall/winter accessories, but my friend just gave me a great summery scarf as a late birthday present.

I didn't have a cool linen shirt like Dakota, so I just wore an old t-shirt that clearly needs to be ironed. I probably wouldn't wear it to work, but would sub in a nicer shirt. Also, that little brown braided belt has been a staple in my wardrobe this summer. I love it with shorts, skirts, dresses, anything. It's so cute!

 # 3
Emma Watson is a big fashion inspiration to me. She always looks so cute and we're about the same age so I find she wears stuff that's very age-appropriate for me. 

I actually wore this outfit to work one day without having seen the Emma picture above, but I really like it. 

And if you want to go out after work and it's too hot for the cardigan, you can ditch it and still have a cute outfit!

# 4
The look I'm re-creating here is Pam's. You can't see her outfit too well because of the baby, but it's a patterned dress and bright yellow short-sleeved cardigan.

I wore a bright red, blue, green, yellow, and white summer dress, and a royal blue short-sleeved cardigan. 

I love this look. Summer is a time for cute dresses in bright colours and bold patterns! I am totally going to rock this look at work!

And now for some a couple of tips for dressing for work in the summer.
Like I said, summer is a time for cute dresses in bright colours and bold patterns, like this one! I got this dress for $2 at a used clothing store on 50% off day. It is just awesome! Don't be afraid to be bold!
If you're like me, most of your leggings are black, brown, grey, or navy. But I have this one pair that is different shades of blue and patterned like a watercolour flower painting. I got them as a hand-me-down from a taller friend who got them as a gift but they were too small. I love them! They are great to pair with neutral coloured dresses/tunics.

Pro tip: If you are wearing leggings instead of pants (which is a good idea because they are much cooler and comfier -cooler as in temperature haha) make sure your dress/tunic/shirt actually covers your butt, becasue if it is too short that is just not a good look.

And those are my summer office wear tips! Do you have any tips/suggestion/inspiration? Leave it in the comments! Also, let me know which outfit was your favourite!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

when she sings I hear a symphony

Left to right, top to bottom: Bleeding Hearts in my front yard, My locket, the moon in the daytime,
the leg at sunset, flower in the front yard, a bunny behind my office,
 tree in the yard, dandelion, flowers in the yard,
rainbow and weird-coloured sky the other night, birthday party cupcakes, weirdly coloured/rainy sunset,
blurry candle at the Freehouse, Ukranian Catholic Church in Athabasca, the sky before the fireworks in Saskatoon on Canada Day,
 Driving home on the Ring Road around 9:30 one night. 

Books Read So Far in 2011: 26
Currently Reading: Go Ask Alice - Anonymous

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Grandma's Garden

My grandma was famous in our family for her love of bright colours, on her clothes and in her garden. I wanted to share some photos I took of her beautiful garden when I was there last week.

just in this one tiny section you can see purple, yellow, orange, pink, and 3 or 4 different greens.

I love lilies and her garden has all colours.

but what her garden is most famous for among the grandchildren are the raspberries, peas, and...strawberries!
The strawberry patch was always the first place we went to when we visited, and grandma purposely hadn't picked them for a couple of days before we came to make sure there were lots for us to eat.

so many different types and colours of flowers.

I wasn't the only one enjoying the flowers. That bee thought they were delicious!

The hollyhocks weren't in bloom but I took a picture anyways because she once wrote me a story called "Grandma's hollyhocks" inspired by these plants.

One day I want to have a garden like this.

Books Read So Far in 2011: 25
Currently Reading: Sisterhood Everlasting  by Ann Brashares

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Magic Lives On...

Disclaimer: *This post contatins spoilers and profane language.*

     So, I didn't go to the midnight release but I went on Friday at 7, and this was me:

   I cried even before the Warner Bros logo, I was pretty much crying in the car on the way there. I went with my boyfriend, his parents, his two sisters, his one sister's boyfriend, and our friend. I wore Gryffindor earrings and a yellow hair elastic and red hairband. Represent.
     I also wore the shirt I wore to Pt. 1, the shirt I got when I worked at Coles in 2007 and the last book came out. It says "10 years of Harry Potter, 10 ans de magique 1997-2007" and on the back has the release dates of all the books. 
     In the car on the way there, I was being a dork with my friends and saying "it says it only goes to 2007 but it's 2011 now. The magic lives on" and they were like "that would make a great shirt, it would say the magic lives on and have 1997 and then a dash." and I was also so excited I just kept saying " You guuuuys. You guuuuuuys. We're going to HARRY POTTER. HARRY FUCKING POTTER. You guuuuuuyyyssss...." and being really annoying.
   And then guess what. Yesterday, only ONE DAY after we saw the movie and that all happened, my friend (one of my boyfriend's sisters) came to my birthday party (which was last night, it was awesome) and gave me a present. And look at what it was.

  A shirt that she MADE. It's so awesome! My one friend said "you're kind of limited in where you can wear that though" and I said "uhhh, EVERYWHERE!" and the friend who made it said "yeah, it's called cardigans" meaning I could just wear a cardigan to cover the F-word on the back, and then the front would still be visible. So exciting.

Follow the jump to read my review/reactions to the film. *SPOILER ALERT*

Sunday, July 10, 2011

My Harry Potter Story

   My grandma died last night. So it might seem weird that I want to talk about Harry Potter. But a lot of people are talking about how this film marks the end of their childhood, so I think it's quite fitting. And my grandma passed on a love of stories to her children, who passed it on to me. And I think the way people are mourning the end of this series fits pretty well with the way I want to mourn my grandma. So hear me out.

First of all, there's this. 

I saw a video today that I think captures what the Harry Potter generation is. 

"There is a generation that lived through Harry Potter in a way that my generation can't and future generations certainly won't. Sure, from now on everybody will have the books...they'll have the movies...they will be there. but what's not there is their newness...
   I envy your generation for what you were able to experience with Harry Potter. Waiting for every book to come out, every movie, and seeing the entire story as a contemporary, through the eyes of someone the same age as the Boy Who Lived."

     Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone came out in Canada just before I turned 9. And that summer, in August (after I'd turned 9) I was in Alberta, camping with my family and my Aunt's family. My Aunt was very up to date on all the new books for kids, and she had the book for her two daughters. My mom, my aunt, my two cousins and I were in a van, going on a road trip somewhere (probably to the lake or to my uncle's farm) and she was reading it to her kids. She asked me to read a chapter, and after a quick synopsis of the backstory, I read "The Forbidden Forest" (The chapter where Voldemort drinks the unicorn blood) aloud to my cousin's. It was awesome.
  That Christmas, my aunt got me the book as a present and I don't know how many times I read it.
Chamber Of Secrets came out just before my birthday the next year, but my dad told me to wait to buy it until it was in paperback. I think I got it for Christmas that year or something.
After that, I didn't wait until the books were in paperback. I bought each one of them as soon as they came out.
     They always seemed to come out around my birthday, too. Except for the 3rd book, they all came out in June or July. It seemed special when I was young.
     Half Blood Prince came out 4 days before my birthday, and I had finished it before my birthday.

     Deathly Hallows came out the day after my 18th birthday, a month after I had graduated high school, and I was working in a bookstore at the time. That was the most special release for me because I got to experience it not only as a reader but as a retailer of the thing people were waiting for. I got to see the boxes of books arrive the night before (but we weren't allowed to put them out yet) and it was so sneaky and exciting. The store I worked in was too small to have a midnight release, but I got the book the next day (as a birthday present from my boyfriend's mom) and I read it on the bus to Calgary, where I was going to visit my sister. We spent our time in Calgary touring around, packing up her house (because she was moving soon) and just reading the book for hours at a time.

I truly grew up with these books.

a fan's sign at the premiere.

     When the books first started coming out, people always talked about how they were making kids read again. How their kids would never read anything until Harry Potter came out and then they read those books in a day. Even when I worked at Coles, people would come to me and say "Do you have anything like Harry Potter?" trying to find something else that would get their kids to read. But there is nothing else like it. 

     Harry Potter is a story about friendship, loyalty, courage, and love and how there are worse things than death and Love Conquers Death. And even though it is ending, the story and its message will live on forever in the hearts of the fans.

And that's how I want to remember my grandma. As a part of my childhood, a part of my life, who will live on forever in the lessons she taught me and the parts of herself I see in me.

"'You think the dead we have loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don't recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble?" - Albus Dumbledore

Friday, July 8, 2011

Explosions In The Sky

     Exactly one week after Canada Day, here are some photos I took of the fireworks in Saskatoon. 

even brighter than the moon, moon, moooon
They were pretty, they weren't spectacular.
They didn't make me think about what I love about this country or reasons to celebrate or anything...

But it was nice to watch them with my friends, and it was a nice tradition.

Next week is going to be Harry Potter week on this blog again. (as if every week isn't Harry Potter week.) Remember back in November when Deathly Hallows Part 1 came out and my blog was pretty much dedicated to it for the week? Well next Monday night I am going to see Deathly Hallows Part 1 in theatres hopefully, and then on Friday I'm going to Deathly Hallows Part 2 for the first time, so I will probably do a Harry Potter-themed post early in the week, and then do a DH Pt. 2 reaction post/review or something again. I am SO EXCITED!

Books Read So Far in 2011: 22
Currently Reading: The Second Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Let Me Be Your Everlasting Light

     I went to The Black Keys on Thursday night, in Saskatoon. I went with my boyfriend, his sister, her boyfriend, his brother, and his brother's friend. It was a fun show.
     This was my first rock concert since Sasquatch and I was pretty excited that we even got tickets. Months ago, when tickets went on sale there was a lot of drama because the tickets for this show went on sale at the same time as Elton John tickets for Regina and Saskatoon. I was upstairs buying my mom Elton John tickets for the Regina show for her birthday, through Ticket Master and had no problems. My boyfriend was downstairs on my computer trying to buy 6 tickets to The Black Keys show, and Saskatoon didn't go through Ticket Master, they just went through the TCU Place website, and it is not equipped to handle that much traffic. So we had 6 tickets on the orchestra level, good seats, and then as we were entering the credit card info the site crashed. This was at 10 am when tickets went on sale. We refreshed the page for an hour and a half, and called TCU Place (but it was busy the entire time) and eventually around 11:30, we saw people updating Facebook saying the show was sold out so we texted our friends letting them know we couldn't get tickets because the site crashed, and then all of a sudden the site went back up and we got 6 seats together on the first balcony. So that was really annoying but I was happy we even got seats since so many people wanted to go and couldn't.

     The opening band was Cage The Elephant, and I didn't really like it. It was so LOUD. All the time, one dynamic, constant attack of noise, and not in a good way. It was mostly just annoying me and making my ears ring. But they did the job of an opening band. They made me excited for the main act. Once they were done I was thinking "I can't wait to hear some music." Harsh, maybe, but if you were there, you understand.

     After Cage The Elephant's set and before The Black Keys started everybody was out at the bar loading up on drinks, and getting crazy. There was a young hippie-looking guy who came and sat by my boyfriend (who wasn't there for the opening band, although someone else was.) And he leaned over and said "Concert of the summer right, here, hey?" and my boyfriend said "Well....I went to Sasquatch...soo.....this'll be pretty good." and the guy got all sad and just went "Oh." And when Stephen told me about it I said he was being kind of an a-hole and he said "As if I wanna talk to that guy all night!" But him trying to set boundaries didn't work because halfway through The Black Key's set the guy sat down just to ask Stephen what he thought of the show so far, then stood back up.
     Also, the people behind us were crazy. They kept yelling things like "f*** yeah Black Keys!" and "Best concert of my f***ing life!" and every time the singer said Thank You they yelled "Thank you!" and when they said they had one more song for us the guy behind me just yelled "Noooooooooo!" It was pretty hilarious/annoying.

     The Black Key's set was really enjoyable. They had a crazy-good light show. The lights were different for every song. Sometimes they were backlit, sometimes there were spots on them, of different colours, the lights changed with the music. 

     They played probably 10 older songs (that I'm not too familiar with) and then they started playing through Brothers. When they played "Everlasting Light" a huge disco ball came up out of nowhere, spun for the song, then disappeared again.

     Here's a rough video I took of it. My camera battery died at the end there and I had to switch it so the video's cut off but you get the point.

     Every song, more things got unveiled. They brought out two other musicians to play through the tracks on Brothers with them. Two screens came out, then disappeared. Then another two came out on the other side, then dissappeared. For one song, all four screens were out. Then there were these Christmas lighty-tea-lighty things draped all over and I don't know how I didn't notice them before because they were there the whole time but it was pretty magical when they lit up. I was like, "were those there the whole time?".

     They played through Brothers pretty much in order, except for the slow songs. They didn't play "Unknown Brother", "Never Gonna Give You Up", "Only One" and probably some others I can't think of, but it was a really great show.
     Then, for the very last song, they bust out This. Again, it must have been there the whole time and I don't know how I didn't see it when the whole stage was lit up at some point.

     Pretty epic. When they left, the lighting guy lit up "Black" "Keys" "Black" "Keys" so people were chanting it, then they came back for an encore and played 2 or 3 more songs. It was cool.
    Also, I bought a T-shirt that says "The Black Keys Are My Brothers" on the front and has a picture of a hand shake on the back, and it's pretty sweet. (I didn't take a picture of it yet, sorry.) I wore it to work yesterday and a lady said "I don't get your shirt." I said "The Black Keys are a band and Brothers is the name of their album. It's a joke." and she said ".....Oh....okay."
     The rest of my long weekend was good, I will probably post some pictures of fireworks tomorrow or Friday, so hurray for that.

Books Read So Far in 2011: 21
Currently Reading: I'm re-reading the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants series because Ann Brashares wrote a new one, that's set 10 years later or something and I bought it so I want to re-read the series to lead up to the new one. I started yesterday and I have about 50 pages left in the first one. I'm hoping to do a book review of the new one once I finish, since I haven't done a review in a while.