Friday, December 15, 2017

So I Fell in Love With Oregon

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How do people choose where they ultimately want to settle down? Do they just get tired and say, "here's good"? Because I'm starting to wonder... or perhaps it's more like me, where the thought of packing up my stuff to move cross country is just too exhausting. I wasn't prepared to love Oregon as much as I did. But... damn.

We maaaaaay have half-jokingly changed our Criaglist searches to the opposite coast. We didn't. But...

Anyway. Earlier this month, after a week in LA for a work trip, I flew up to Portland to meet up with Chris and my brother for a few days of hiking and staring at trees with my mouth open. Upon arrival, we promptly left Portland and drove West to Zig Zag/Government Camp, where we stayed for a couple nights.

Things I fell in love with in Zig Zag and Government Camp:

1. The Zig Zag Cafe. One part diner, one part gift shop, one part thrift store. With a dash of convenience store thrown in. It was disorganized and weird, which is how I would describe 98% of my favorite places and people. Also, the biscuits. Solid.

2. Government Camp. The name and the amount of crows that lived there. Like, so many crows you guys, it was great. Also the historical society is worth your time. Chris and I had a much needed dinner or German sausage/schnitzel in Gov't Camp and it was spectacular.

3. The Timberline lodge. My brother runs a portion of the grooming operations at Timberline and took us up in the snowcat on Saturday night. Which was a trip. But before that we took a walk around Timberline lodge, which is a historical landmark and rightly so. It's insanely gorgeous.

4. Little Hawaii, a waterfall hike near Zig Zag and the initial source of staring at trees, mouth agape. A good spot to get good and muddy. 

After spending Saturday exploring the woods and marveling at the transition from rainforest to snowscape that transpires when you drive up to Gov't Camp from Zig Zag, drove to the coast on Sunday so we could see the other part of Oregon (or at least, another part). We originally only had about 72 hours in the state, we wanted to make the most of every last one. And you guys. The OCEAN. Or rather, THE FOREST BY THE OCEAN. On Sunday at approximately 1 o'clock in the afternoon is when we fell for this state, as we gazed up at the sheer mass of trees surrounding us (mouths agape yet again). As I said, and as several other people told me funnily enough, Oregon is like Maine on steroids. Insane insane insane. But after spending time in the forest and by the coast... I'm not sure I'd want to live in Portland. The city was lovely, but my ideal Oregon life would be van life I think, so I could be as close to all that natural beauty as possible.

That night we met up with a close friend of ours in the city and headed back to our hotel on the earlier side to prep for our AM flight... which turned out to be unnecessary because our flight ended up being delayed and then rebooked for the following day. Surprise! This could have been awful, but we decided to make the most of things and booked a second night in Portland. For two people who are maybe the world's worst when it comes to vacationing, I feel like perhaps we're getting better? Or at least more flexible when plans change. Here's to more adventures and definitely more Oregon.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Life Lately + Weekend Links

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Whoo. Hi. Happy December. How is it December? And how is it December 8th? Are you ready for the holidays? I am most certainly not. Chris and I just got back from a whirlwind trip to Oregon to visit my brother and before that, I was in LA for a team offsite for work. Traveling between Thanksgiving and Christmas always makes this time go by so much faster, don't you think? Add to that apartment hunting, more work, and the general business of everyday lives... and yeah... so not ready for this holiday stuff. But this weekend we're cat sitting for our friends in Portland (Maine... the original!) so I'm hoping to find some cute holiday cards to send out (definitely did no get our shit together to order photo cards this year) and maybe even a gift or two if I'm lucky. I hear there's a pretty rad craft fair happening at Thompson's Point (Picnic... anyone been?) and I'm planning on a trip to Becky's, too.

Truth be told, I've been feeling a bit off kilter the past month or so and last week's trip to LA and Oregon felt like the reset I needed. As much as I love it here, I'm also a creature of habit and the sudden shakeup of my routine affected me more than I would have expected. no longer being down the street from my gym... no longer living down the street from one of my best friends... and the realities of living back home again, however temporary... and living in the WOODS... it's been tough on body and mind. I miss having my own space and I miss having radical and inspiring friends around me. I always feel as though I need to follow these missives up with "But we love it! And we knew what we were getting into!" – the fact of the matter is, every decision is multi-sided. I know we made the right decision in coming back to Maine because I no longer wake with with crushing longing to be in a beautiful place – I now fall asleep with the moon and stars in full view, and walk Buster the golden retriever in the woods in the morning – but there were sacrifices made as well. Anyway... that's what things have looked like lately. In other news, we're expecting our first semi-serious snowfall tomorrow and I can't wait. Here's a few things that caught my eye this week:

This vintage kimono pajamas set would be an incredible gift for someone you really, really love.

I saw this cardigan on Mara and fell deeply in love (with the cardigan... Mara's cool too). Those sleeves! Too good.

In balancing work, freelance and other projects (along with being fairly high strung), I take stress management very, very seriously. I found this article to be a unique perspective on making stress work for you.

On my wishlist for December: a great velvet party dress, a par of rad well-treaded boots (these are my secret weapon for cool winter boots), and a classic car coat

Cup of Jo was one of the first blogs I started reading waaaay back in 2009 - So I loved reading this profile on Joanna

Speaking of velvet, this dress would be gorgeous for a holiday party

Worth reading in this climate: Running While Female (Related and important: Why women are morbid)

Unexpectedly fell in love with this perfume... it smells so clean and elegant, even my mom likes it, and she's not a perfume lady

I'm sure you've seen this already, but... welcome to hell

Love the color of this faux-fur jacket so much (and it's 40% off right now) ... this sweater too

How lovely is this gorgeous handmade pourover? I've been doing a lot of pourover coffee lately with my reusable filter and love it.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Life Lately / Small Biz Saturday Picks

You guys, I'm having a serious flashback moment right now. I'm sitting in Atomic Cafe in Beverly, writing on this blog, with the best latte I've had in what seems forever sitting in front of me. For those just tuning in, Chris and I used to live in Beverly, MA (where I started writing on Orchid Grey while working as a college admissions counselor), I'm back in the area for part of the weekend after spending Thanksgiving at my grandparent's in Cape Cod. All of this information is probably pretty unremarkable to you, but for me, it's amazing to think of what transpired for us to get to this point. Three or four months ago, the thought of living in New England again felt like a pipe dream. Something nice to think about but generally out of reach and/or unattainable. But here I am. The past two months haven't been without their bumps and bouts of severe loneliness (I was prepared to feel lonely, I left behind two of the best friends I've made in years and moved quite literally to the top of a remote mountain 40 minutes away from anything). I'll admit to searching Craigslist daily for apartments and dreaming hardcore about the moment we finally move to Portland, but also holy shit, we're here. It's surreal.

We haven't gotten out of our general area as much as I would like to as of late, but I'm hoping that will begin to change as our weekends get freed up and as the hustle of the holidays draws closer. We did a bit of holiday shopping this weekend, and it was great to see so many out for Small Business Saturday. Back on he subject of apartments, I can't, can't wait to get ourselves set up in our own place again! Walking around Salem today there were so many cute home goods shops and I couldn't help but make a mental list of what I'd like to get. Anyway... sharing a few of my picks for online small businesses, many of which are offering up some great deals for the weekend, along with some links as well. Enjoy your weekend! xo

Jess Amity just put a ton of stuff on sale - I'd definitely scoop up this vintage dress to wear to holiday parties this season.

Drifter Organics is having a 20% off sale. I love the products made by Micaela and her mom, especially for winter. The body butters are wonderful and work great for dry skin and for those with eczema (like meeeee).

Maybe it's because of how busy I've been, but I really haven't feeling much of the holiday spirit. These 16 holiday drink ideas might change that though... is having a big sale - they make my favorite planner

Are you on Snapchat? I don't use mine AT ALL because IG is so much easier. Apparently, I'm not the only one

We did not get out shit together to take a holiday photo this year so I've been scoping out holiday cards. I'm really into this one (and it looks like the whole shop is on sale)

My full-time gig is having a big sale, too! I swear by this product.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Black Friday Sales Worth Shopping (Updated!)

So, apparently Black Friday/Cyber Monday started early this year (I've already picked up the most badass pair of boots from the massive Shopbop sale)! Frankly, I'm not complaining. Anything to lessen the insanity of the day after Thanksgiving is a step in the right direction in my book. I've never been a huge fan of Black Friday, only occasionally keeping an eye on some of my favorite sites for possible sales, but I was still surprised to see so many websites rolling out deals on the earlier side. Like a lot of people (I think), I'll admit I don't use Black Friday as a time to buy all the holiday gifts I intend to get people (Small Business Saturday is for that... and stay tuned!), nope, Black Friday is usually when I tend to pick up a few things for myself! I'm sharing a few of my favorite sales and some of the items I have my eye on (for myself, and yes, other people too :) ) Happy shopping!

PS - Stay tuned, as I'll update this with a few more great Black Friday sales rolling out on Friday! xo

Save up to 75% off sale items and take up to 30% off your order at Shopbop! I just grabbed these rad boots and this gorgeous dress and I've got my eye some great coffee table books to give as gifts and maybe a new pair of vintage-inspired jeans, too. (Some exclusions apply, sale valid through November 26, 2017, at 11:59pm PT)

Save 20% off your purchase from Outdoor Voices! And save up to 50% off on select items 

Take 40% off your order from J.Crew! These slippers would make a great gift for your mom or sister and I'm obsessed with the idea of one of these bags (love the red too) monogramed with WTF or LOL.

Save an extra 25% off at Madewell! This candle would be nice to give a coworker and my favorite sweater is on sale (and in different colors... swoon)

Take 20% off everything from Glossier! I actually love their new perfume, You, and I'm definitely grabbing their Body Duo

Save a whopping 50% off at LOFT! I'm really digging their jackets and this cute (super giftable) hat

The Nordstrom sale is go! Love these over the knee boots, this super cozy sweater, and these classic boots

Save 30% off Sam Edelman! Absolutely love these boots and these chic loafers

Urban Outfitters: Buy one, get one 50% off, everything. If we had our own place right now, I'd definitely take advantage and grab this gorgeous live-edge bench and this adorable llama pillow

Save 20% off everything from Moorea Seal! Love this jumpsuit, these loafers, and this pretty mug

Friday, November 17, 2017

Life Lately / Weekend Links

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Hello! What a week! To say I'm thankful it's Friday night would be understatement of the decade. This week, man. Our car is in the shop (both cars actually, as we also own an incredibly sketchy truck now), meaning that even our back-up car is unavailable. I'll let you guess how convenient it is to live 30 minutes from civilization with no car *_* On the incredibly bright side, it's going to cost less than expected and we're headed to Portland tomorrow to spend the day together before joining up with friends for a much needed friendsgiving. I might sound like I'm griping, but life in Maine has been pretty lovely these past few weeks. We got our first snow and the scenery makes up for any complaints I might have (it beats looking at city litter 10000%), although I am looking forward to a trip to LA and Oregon at the end of this month, I'll never turn down the opportunity to get the hell outta dodge.

Jess's finds have really been A+ lately (always are), I'm especially loving this rad reversible jacket and this incredible kimono.

A Facebook friend gave this book a rave review - actually she specifically said it was "haunting" - therefore I'm interested in reading it. I haven't been reading as much lately... I blame work (pro tip: blame everything on work).

I just got this fragrance and this bra from Moorea Seal and 10/10 recommend both. The perfume, Maine from MCMC, smells a bit rosy with a woodsy note, and the bra is just super, super comfy.

Related to working too much: the desire to stuff my face with sweets. I've successfully avoided doing this (well, except for this afternoon's giant cookie), but don't these homemade caramels look absolutely incredible?

Buying a pair of Dr. Martins before we moved was 100% a great decision. I have my eye on this platform pair next.

A weird side-effect of living with my mother? My consumption of true crime everything has gone up tenfold. Officially addicted to My Favorite Murder and old reruns of Unsolved Mysteries. Judge me how you wish. (related, I love this shirt)

My love for statement earrings did not die with summer... really into these handmade leather earrings, this star-covered pair (on sale!), and these eye-catching hoops

Maybe you're wondering (probably not wondering at all) what it is I do when I'm not writing incoherent sentences on this blog? Writing actual sentences for other people. Check out my latest pieces for Free People, The Style Line, and Green Dream. I also work here now :)

How do you feel about the white boot trend? I'm in love with this pair (here's a lower-priced option), but I worry that they might not be well-suited for Maine (scratch that, I know they're not well-suited for Maine)

And lastly, a valid question: Does America know what sex is? Guys... I don't think America knows... (but seriously, in light of all the gross dudes being outed as sexual predators, this is worth reading)

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Weekend Links 11.12

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Happy Sunday! How was your weekend? We just got back from a day trip to Bedford, MA for a big brunch with friends from my Swapaholics days, something that was much, much needed after a rather solitary few weeks. Also needed? A three-day weekend. Thank god. Life has felt very, very busy lately, and after last weekend's time change, time has felt in short supply when it gets dark at 4:30. The weather has been hinting at winter these past few days, with even a few snowflakes. This week will surely be another crazy one, but let's jump right in!

So in love with this festive vintage dress

How gorgeous are these cozy knit sweaters? Completely obsessed with this pink one...

An important life hack

Save 40% off J.Crew! Love this oversized cardigan and this cute skirt

Really into this band lately

Pretty fall-to-winter transitional pieces

YUM - this looks SO good and so comforting

Would love to add a couple of these pillows to our couch

Would love to try this book

How to care for house plants

Loves this series from Apartment Therapy

I bet these candles smell amazing

How to do Thanksgiving like a pro

Monday, November 6, 2017

Pink Sweater + Shearling Jacket

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A couple of amazing things are happening here:

1. I am dressed. In something other than yoga pants. Alert the local news.

2. My makeup is done.

In other words, I'm acting like a normal human being. Which is somewhat remarkable, because guys, adjusting to rural life and what it does to your personal style is... an experience. It's hard. Especially as the weather has been getting colder. At least, it has been for me. My weekdays are typically usually split between home (which is very much in the woods right now), my "local" cafe (local being 35 minutes away), and the gym (also 35 minutes away... but conveniently 5 minutes from the gym!). And my weekends? Gloriously they've been spent hiking. But none of those things necessitate getting dressed in the cute sense. All this to say, I've been spending a shocking amount of time in yoga pants.

But guys, I'm so into this sweater (all of these sweaters this season, TBH), it's been a breath of fresh air for my closet. I'd been looking for a light pink pullover for awhile, ever since seeing the fluffy cashmere dream that J.Crew was selling, and this one ticks all the boxes: pullover, slightly loose and highly tuck-able. And bonus! A mock neck. Paired with a vintage fisherman's cap from MicknMarianne and a pair of vintage classic brown booties, it's perfect for these early November days when the weather is fluctuating between 40 and 60.