Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Quarter Life Crisis

well maybe it's not a crisis...more like an irritatingly nagging concern about the fact that i'm going to be 25 in less than a month. it's the all too uncomfortable realization that, in spite of my declaring to be a Toy R Us kid forever, that i have to grow up. it's the thoughts that i try my hardest to push aside on my morning ride into work about where i would like to be in the next 5 years. it's planning for a future that isnt promised, isnt certain, and is subjective to a variety of known and unknown variable.

um...this sucks.

not that im depressed about it or anything...i'm glad ive made it this far and i figure i can only keep going up *crosses fingers and spins around 3 times* but it seems like, for me, this is a point in my life where i have to think critically about what i want to do with my life. im not thinking 10 years no, that's too hard...i'll just think ahead 5 and take it from there.

and as uncertain things seem to be at times, ive got to say that i feel ok knowing that ive got some semblance of a plan. that from working my way backwards from my goals...i can see what steps i might need to take to get me where i want to be. so im not afraid of my future at all, but the fact that im the one responsible for myself and my own personal growth has given me somethings to consider.

i know i need to go back to school. do i want to go back to school? eh, not particularly, just because it's so expensive, but i do welcome the chance to learn new things and interact with other bright minds. i'll be trying to get my mind geared towards GRE prep so that i'll be ready for it come next year. i need to get myself back into that college way of thinking....the standardized tests, the personal statement, the fasfa, the loans (ugh...the loans). ive been outta school going on 3 years now, and i can see why folks who tell you to finish up your schooling while you're still young...because once you get out into the 'world' and are working full time and are carving out some kind of a social life for yourself the idea of school, books, tests, studying...yea, not too appealing.

but i will conquer.

of course the yearnings for the stable relationship are present as i figure i'll want to start a family within the next decade or so. but...lack of prospects and a rather short tolerance for nonsense on my part has continued to push those yearnings down, down, down, lol.

i dont plan on moving from the area anytime soon...i actually like northern VA...if i were to move anywhere out of VA, it would have to be somewhere further south, and i know im not even ready to begin realistically thinking about doing that. so for now i will continue to daydream about my summer home by a nice lil river down in Savannah.

career...well i know i want to stay in the non-profit world. (YES!) but i dont want to take graphic design on least i dont want to work for anyone else - i like freelancing and would like to see my freelancing business expand in the years to come. but when it comes to the 9-5, i think the non-profit sector is where i'll be. love to have a job with flexible hours...where i'm not always behind a desk staring at a computer screen...something where life and work can come together as one, but id still be able to leave my work at work at the end of the day. i dont want to be a slave to the workforce. i want to have some kind of creative and academic freedom to just do whatever it is i'm doing, knowing that the work is fullfilling, doing some kind of good for a cause larger than myself, and pays me well (hey, i can dream)

so in a nutshell thats a glimpse into some of the things going on in my head as of late. i wont even begin to talk about my musings on religion. might have to save that post for another day.


Monday, October 27, 2008

It's just too damn sad

I'd been following up with the events surrounding Jennifer Hudson's family...

For those who don't know, read up on it here. I just can't even rehash's just too much.

I just don't understand...why? Why do people just treat each other so recklessly? Why take someone else's life? It just isnt right...and i can only imagine what the Hudson family is going through right now.

For those who pray, send up some prayers for this family. For those who don't pray, just send out some positive thoughts or something to the family. They are in definite need of it right now.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Are you there Jah? It's me Ras-Trent...

usually i dont watch just hasnt been funny to me in years, but when Tina Fey broke out the Sarah Palin impersonations snl got my attention once again. in last night's episode i found a little gem of a skit about a Rasta Man...Ras-Trent. i havent stopped laughing...seriously...skiddley whoooaaaa ;)

Can i just favorite part occurs when the countdown reads about 0:25...let's keep it real Ras-Trent...lmao


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It’s the small things…

Well loves, I liked that post the other day so much I decided to write another one about my forays into the fashion realm.

So today, I felt like channeling the masculine. For ages women have been putting our own personal touch on otherwise masculine pieces of clothing and I’ve always admired it. There’s just something classy and tough about a nicely pulled together outfit with some masculine touches. You get the best of both worlds really.


*again...that pile of, forgive me y'all

Now, let me just say….I LOVE my shoes…those shoes…have you ever gone shopping and seen something that just SCREAMS out to you? Well that’s what those shoes did for me. I’m telling you, they were just sitting on the shelf WAITING for me to walk by. We were meant to be. Oh and you see the trouser socks? I know you love the trouser socks…because I surely do!

For today’s color scheme, we left it a little subdued with the black and gray, but that blue top is so electric that it provides a nice contrast to the winter tones and really makes the outfit pop I think. I’m usually not one to wear a lot of blue, but lately I’ve had this thing for bright, vibrant, fun blues. Naturally when I saw this shirt online ( I knew that it needed to make a home in my closet.

I might be a bit of an impulse buyer, but at least I’m a fierce, albeit economically thrifty one. ;)

Then there’s the tie…oh how I love ties on women – it’s so bad ass. This tie I’ve had for quite awhile now; it was my first, a simple black tie. I’d love to expand and really get into some more colorful ties, but I find that – as much as I love to wear ties – I just haven’t been including that look into my styles lately. But every now and then…. :D

So now the run down…

*More Colors Available*" type="hidden">Bedford Cord Shirt in Caribbean ($16.88) -

Trouser Socks ($2.99 for a pack of 3) - AJ Wright

Shoes ($16) - Ross

Tie ($10)

Gray Sweater Vest ($15) - Old Navy

Perfect Fit Pants ($20) - Ashley Stewart

Total Cost of Outfit: $80.87

Though the economy is suffering right now, your wardrobe doesn’t have to. ;)



Monday, October 20, 2008

The Busy Bee Must Still Look Fabulous

I have been beyond busy lately…between work, my design gig, trying to paint again, thinking about my future/grad school…um yea, busy. Quite. And admittedly, a little down. But you know how we cure that?


Ok, I like to dress well, so sue me. But I DON’T like spending a ton of $$ while doing so. So this busy lil bee has recently purchased some lovely goodies that are sure to make any drearily chilly day seem to shine and sparkle all on it’s own.


*ignore the box of clothing...i need to take them to Goodwill

Now I’m rather wary of the sheath dresses…I love them on others, but I know I’ve got hips and thighs that are MIGHTY MIGHTY, lol. But I took a chance and ordered it online from Old Navy and lo and behold…it worked out ok! A tip to anyone buying a sheath dress without trying it on first…order it in a size larger than what you normally wear, just to account for the way the garment fits.

Gray seems to be the color of the season, but I’ve noticed within the past week I’ve been doing quite a nice amount of black and gray…I mean that’s great, but I’m all about colors now. So I decided to lively it up a bit with this season’s other hot color, and a growing fave of mine…Purple. I thought the button down shirt underneath was a nice touch (the shirt was also courtesy of Old Navy) in addition to the plum colored tights (for $5! thanks Avenue!). The boots…oh how I love ankle boots. Why? Because I have calves that could kill and most calf boots don’t fit, but an ankle boot…why that is the fun of the boot without the agony of suffocating my legs, lol.

All in all I think it was a nice look…sadly I forgot to take a picture of the purse, but it too was fierce as it was a kind of color block in several shades of purple. You’ll just have to take my word on that one.

All in all…I think the entire outfit (shoes too) cost under $100 (not including the pearl necklace – that was a gift from Daddy :D) And who says you can’t be fabulous…WHILE on a budget AND trying to save the world? Pfft, it is most certainly possible!


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

...Till You Drop

I'm exhausted...but really, the question these days seems to be...'When am i not exhausted??' The answer? Um...when I'm sleeping, lol.

I've been going full steam ahead these past couple of months and i don't see an end in sight. Over the weekend me and a friend did our part and put a gang of money back into the economy...that's right - we went shopping, lol. And oh how wonderful it was! I got my fall coat *woot* and some additional fall/winter pieces to replace the items i've purged from my closet to donate to charity.

But onto more important matters...tonight's the night, the last Presidential Debate before elections. Admittedly, i was disappointed/frustrated at the last debate as i saw both candidates dance around the issues presented to them. I can only hope that tonight they do better than that. I haven't watched so much CNN in my LIFE as i have over the past few months. Granted, it feels good to be able to follow what's going on, but sheeeesh i want this thing to be over...and for President Obama to get to work ;)

Speaking of work...i've gotta get back to's busy time 'round the office. :)


Friday, October 10, 2008

Nothing to Leave Behind

My mother said something to me the other day and it kind of made me sad. We were having one of our normal discussions, and I'd asked her if she had a will. Now, my reasons for this was because I'd been doing a nice bit of reading on planning out one's financial future, and naturally the topic of wills and trusts was discussed in my readings. Wanting to make sure that my most loved of all loved ones was taking care of things, I mentioned it to her casually and of course she had one. I began to share a lil bit more about the things I was reading, about revocable trusts and how that might help to keep a deceased person's property from going into probate (meaning, to the court where the intheriters have to pay a fee on whatever it is they're supposed to inherit), when she interrupted me saying.."I don't have anything"

So simple a statement. So honest. And it just hit me and hurt. Not because it meant I wouldn't inherit anything, but because here is a woman who worked hard all her life, very smart, very kind, and very dedicated to her family, especially her children, but it was just a jolt to realize that someone so deserving of having something of her own, did not. She has a legacy all her own, whether or not she knows it, my mom has made a huge impression upon me. I am a better person, a better woman, for having her as a mother. I literally owe her my life. 

But I digres...Planning ahead, thinking about longevity, is admittedly not high up on the priority list for a lot of working class families. When your kids need clothes or food to eat today, it is very hard to think about how to prepare for their tomorrow. I know wealth and money mean very little in the grand scheme of life. The lack of or the abundance of money says nothing about a person's character nor their integrity...Yet we still pursue making as much money as we can for whatever reason that drives us. It can be of use to us when we might need to make a purchase or pay for a necessary service...and though the economy seems bad now, it can help us to plan for a retirement from the workforce that won't leave us completely destitute. I mean, social security can only do but so much. 

i love my mom, and she's taught me a lot. that night more than any other before it, the importance of thinking ahead, of saving for one's future hit home - and hard. 


Understanding the Economy

I came across a post on The Black Informant's blog that gave some pretty good links about understanding what's going on with the economy right now. I know everyon's head is surely swimming right now trying to grasp everything, but here are some of the links provided to help us understand things a little better:

Hope those are helpful to you.


A Wiser Shopper

Happy Friday everyone! I'm looking forward to this three day weekend - how about you? 

I'm especially looking forward to the Columbus Day sales as I'm currently in the hunt for a fall coat. Usually I'm the kinda girl that will wear a favorite item until it falls to pieces...and then try to piece it back together if I really love the item. But alas, I'm getting too old for the unintentional patchwork items, lol, and i'm learning to let go. 

Right now I'm on the hunt for a particular looking coat. Dressy enough, but casual in it's own right...preferably something not black, I'd like to add a little pizzazz to the outwear this season. In my efforts to remain fiscally responsible, but not sacrifice quality for the sake of a bargain, my search has lead me to JC Penney. I've gotta say...JC Penney really delivers when it comes to the quality pieces at decent prices. Check our some of these beauties that have caught my eye...

Double Breasted A-Line Wool Walker ($139)

Worthington® Wool-blend Coat ($159)

Hooded Wool-blend Swing Coat ($129)

Worthington® Belted Wool-blend Walker ($159) [this is my fave!]

With the economy not looking too great it seems like everyone is concerned about how much worse things can get. Money is tight for most of us right now, but unfortunately there are certain purchases that need to be made - like a decent coat for myself so that I won't freeze my butt off waiting for the bus everyday. I've tried to do my best these past couple of months to really cut down on the wasteful spending and get the most out of my money. Seems like I'm shopping less, looking for sales more, buying items that I absolutely need to have, and keeping track of every penny. It helps me be a better steward of the cash I do get, and makes me feel a little more secure in my own financial situation as the stock markets continue to plummet. 

What are some things you're doing to cope in these times of financial hardship?


Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Re-emergence...Some Thoughts on Finances

Have I really not posted since February? Goodness…

Well, what has been occurring in my personal life…working my tail off at my 9-5, got my own little slice of heaven in my freelance design business ( – check me out), and general do-gooding.

I think I stopped writing, not because I didn’t have anything to say, but because I was and still am, more interested in living the moment than talking about it. But there has been plenty to talk about these days, as I’m sure you’re aware.

So let’s have a chat, shall we? And by chat, I really mean monologue, but that’s ok – I’m sure you don’t mind.

The current situation with the Global market has got everyone very worried about their fiscal future. Am I worried? Hm…not as much, because I’m still relatively young and don’t plan on retiring any time soon, nor do I have any investments tied up in the market. So, no I’m not panicked. I AM however, disappointed at the way the American government is mishandling this entire ordeal. I know it isn’t helpful to harp on the past, but truly I think we had this one coming. I don’t see how people could have missed this. Banks making shoddy loans to folks who they knew couldn’t afford the payments once the interest rates kicked in…Predatory lending gone amuck…what did they expect to happen? The greed that this country engages in on the daily is appalling and I think it is coming back to bite us in the ass…and HARD.

What really sucks is the fact that those who are suffering the most are those who have the most to lose. Your typical American homeowner who just wanted to live out the “American Dream” and have a chance to have a place of their own…those folks are in turmoil right now as their homes go into foreclosure in a market that is as volatile as ever. These people are losing their homes and probably a lot of money as well. But the government isn’t thinking as much about those people…it’s the banks and the investment firms that are getting the bailout. Even after a $700 Billion dollar bailout plan banks are still hesitant to give out loans. Well what does that mean? In essence that we just fronted almost a Trillion dollars to save these financial institutions, only to find that they still are no better off. Thanks. My children’s children’s children will be paying off this debt. Debt accumulated from greed and avarice.

I don’t know what this means for the market in the long run, but you can bet that my eyes and ears are wide open looking for news about this. It seems that if banks continue to freeze credit, the average person like you and me can’t do basic things…like buy a car, apply for a credit card or an expansion of one’s credit (as banks are now lowering people’s credit limits), or even apply for a loan to go to college. For businesses it means that it will be harder for them to finance their businesses and keep them afloat. Production will more than likely be down as there is less money to go around to fund the labor. People will continue to get laid off as companies run out of money and can no longer afford to pay employees.

Such are the times we live in.

I believe it’s going to get worse before it gets better – it always does. I’m optimistic that the US will come out of this, but I just hope that we come away from this learning some serious lessons about regulating how banks and investment firms are able to leverage the money they have. It feels like this country is going through some serious growing pains at the moment, and I hope that when the dust has settled we will emerge stronger and more secure.