sydni_64: (Default)
I'm so excited about my latest find!

Earlier today, I went (yes, you guessed it) thrifting. I saw a nice blue tote, and thought to myself, this would be a good tote to carry over the holidays. I'll be travelling and visiting family and friends, and it's nice to have a big tote to throw everything into. Weighing into my decision was that I thought the tote looked exceptionally well-constructed, and possibly expensive. I knew I had heard the brand name before, but couldn't quite place it. In any event, the tote cost $6.99, which I figured was OK, plus I got a 25% discount for being affiliated with a university, so the bag cost a little over $5.

Well, I got home, fired up the Google machine, and realized that I had scored a brand new $485 handbag.

WOW.

(This is even the same place I got the beautiful Syracuse China at. And today I bought more pieces in the pattern, at 5 for a DOLLAR. Holy crap!)

pictures! )

Here's hoping people don't think I'm making HORRIBLE decisions when I show up with a $485 handbag. lol
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The non-denominational happy winter greeting is most awesome. :)

::admires octopus of awesomeness hanging out on my profile::

Thanks! Totally made my day! :)
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My friend K. and I had an AMAZING DAY, yesterday!

It was funny because we had both been feeling under the weather. We chatted on the phone about what to do with our plans for Saturday, and we both decided, hey, if we're together hanging out, we'll have fun, even if neither of us is feeling 100%.

Our plans were to hit up some thrift stores. The thrifting portion of the day. )

After we got done thrifting, we went to a coffeeshop downtown to relax, chat, and sip some chai. This was lovely. Finally, we were ready to call it a day and head home. We walked outside--and there was a freaking PARADE happening! So we joined it! It was a holiday parade. The funniest part was that interspersed among the tunes the marching band played was Sweet Caroline. Not quite sure how that fits in, but hey. I won't complain! There were a couple thousand people singing Christmas carols and marching through downtown to an ice skating rink. Santa and Mrs. Claus came out on the ice and gave out candy, and then there was a freaking FIREWORKS display. How cool is that?!

So, we decided that this was officially the most awesome day of awesomeness, ever. Especially since we started out the day thinking, well, we both just need to get out of our respective houses and we haven't hung out in like two weeks, which is too long, so let's get out and do something. And it ended with us marching in a parade and seeing fireworks downtown! Cool!
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OK, I keep obsessing over these plates that DBF and I found at one of the thrift stores we went to today!

We bought them because they were beautiful. We didn't know they were collectors' items. OK, so not like a bazillion-dollars collectors' items, but like, "lots of people who are really into this type of thing think these plates are wonderful" items.




The pattern is called "Largo." They were part of a line called "Carefree Calypso," made by the Syracuse China company between 1966 and 1970. And they are GORGEOUS. I don't know how well it comes across in the photo, but they have such beautiful texture and the gradation of yellows from the center to the edge is just so organic-feeling and pretty. They were glazed beautifully and they sparkle!

I LOVE THEM.

We paid $3.49 for 16 pieces! w00t!
sydni_64: (crackagents)
Today is my birthday! ::bounces::

I'm excited that last night I finished a rough draft of the dissertation chapter I've been working on. That was my goal--to have this chapter draft done before my birthday. So, yay!

I started off the celebration last night at midnight with a champagne toast to me. :)

Instead of going out to a restaurant, I have requested a sumptuous meal at home. However, my tummy's been a little under the weather, so we are postponing the meal until Sunday brunch. I feel I can have a much more exciting celebration meal by preparing simple tasty things at home, instead of shelling out $$ at a restaurant. My birthday brunch on Sunday will include: champagne, lobster tail (so cheap right now!), käsespätzle, and a green salad with buttermilk dressing. YUM.

Today, DBF and I are going to go bowling and then hit up some thrift stores. I'm excited for the thrifting. There are a couple places I haven't been yet, and I am looking forward to checking them out.

On Saturday, my friend K. and I are going to go... thrifting! hehe. Exciting. I'm thinking I might like to check out the Salvation Army thrift store on Saturday, but I'm not sure. As an organization, they really skeeve me big time. I probably will give the store a look, though. I'm curious to see how it is.

My dad gave me a J. Crew gift card for my birthday. Nice of him! One thing I need, that J. Crew does well, is a really nicely-constructed pair of shoes. I've learned that you can buy cheap shoes, but it's still one of those areas where really good comfortable ones are just going to cost more. Also, thrifting doesn't really work because most people tend to run their shoes into the ground, as it were.

I also got a gift certificate from Sephora, for free lip gloss. And now I'm really regretting that I forgot to update my mailing address with DSW! They usually do good birthday promotional coupons! Oh, well.

I'm excited for my day of bowling and thrifting. And I'm going to go to a cupcake bakery I have been avoiding like the plague. lol. DBF is plotting a cake for my Sunday brunch, but it's a surprise. However, I've been strongly agitating for chocolate.

In other news, not totally unrelated, I recently tried Zumba. I liked it! I thought the learning curve was a little steep until I realized I was starting out with an intermediate Zumba tape, and that the weights made it even more complicated than normal intermediate Zumba. However, it was really fun!! Definitely something good to mix into my exercise routine. I wouldn't say it was "just like dancing," but I did like that you used lots of sexy, silly movements. It's fun.
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Alright, I knew this would happen.

My name is Syd, and I am a thrift-aholic.

I just get such a freaking rush when I find a great deal! Like, the modal/cotton fully-lined Talbots shirt I bought for $4 the other day. Sooo light, warm, and comfortable.

But more exciting is the Brighton handbag, in perfect, brand-new condition, spic-and-span inside and lining fully clean and intact, that I bought at a thrift store this morning. I paid $6.99. Retail price? $230. Used price on eBay? Somewhere between $60 and $85.

I usually hate clothes-shopping, but in the thrift stores, I don't have to get irritated by astronomical prices, plus the clothing is organized by size with clothes from every brand imaginable all together so that I don't have to traipse from store to store to store praying there'll be something in my size. It's just especially important since I am working hard to put together a professional wardrobe after being a student for so long. Can't show up to the office in my Batman t-shirt anymore (as much as this hurts me)!

One thing I did NOT buy, even though I had a love for it, was an electric pink zip-front tailored blazer with big round black buttons on the cuffs. OMG I loved it, it was so garish and ridiculous, but I just couldn't imagine where or in what circumstances I would wear the thing. Yes, I know that this is what con balls are for, but even still. And what was the label, you ask? Stirling Cooper. Oh, it took all my willpower to put that thing back on the rack, but I'm really making an effort right now to just buy things that help meet my immediate need for clothes to wear to the office. Sometimes it really sucks to be a grown-up! lol

Yoga

Nov. 5th, 2009 08:00 am
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 Oh, my goodness. So, I have access to a gym that is very close to work, and I'm trying to lose weight, and I no longer have the chronic pain I did last year, so I am really taking the opportunity to work out regularly. I've been doing cardio on the Stairmaster and the elliptical machine, and that's been going real well and I'm definitely getting fitter. And last week, I lost a pound and a half!

Yesterday morning, I decided to finally get back into doing yoga, something I love, so I put a Brian Kest Power Yoga DVD into the dvd player. It was wonderful. I actually do enjoy working out, it makes me feel more alive and in-the-world.

But omg today I am so sore! ha! I'm taking it as the good sign that it is that I really pushed myself (not too hard, I'm not injured, but just enough to really work), and I am going to be stronger for it. But omg the soreness.

Been really trying to clean up my eating habits. Last night I made broiled tilapia fillets, mujadara, and broccoli & feta pie. Yummy.
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Oh, my.

So, I love risotto. Love it.  One summer, one of my friends and I decided to perfect the art of making it at home (it was awful weather, that summer--cold, rainy, dark, and calling out for comfort food). Well, we perfected the art. Believe me when I say, this gift can sometimes be a curse. I know that if I buy a bag of arborio rice, something mind-blowingly comforting and delicious (and fattening!) will be created in my kitchen. With great power, comes great responsibility.

Well, I recently heard that steel-cut oats could be prepared risotto-style. I figured it was worth a try. Boy, is it wonderful! Not only are you substituting healthy whole-grains for the starchy arborio, but you are also adding a nutty and comforting flavor dimension to the dish. My Italian-American friend was extremely skeptical, but when he tasted it he said, Wow! That is delicious!

I made my ris-oat-to with clam stock, garlic, leeks, sauteed mushrooms, a little Madeira, and one crumbled up vegetarian Italian sausage link (if you are an omnivore, of course you can use meat sausage). I grated some Pecorino Romano to put on top, but it really truly does not need it, I think because the oats themselves already have that rich, nutty taste to them.

Obviously, this would work with whatever you like in risotto. I am so happy I have found a way to eat "risotto" on a more regular basis!
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Oh, yum.

I just made crispy black bean cakes and mango salsa. Om nom nom!

The best part is that I feel satisfied but not disgustingly full. I have to remember to eat this way.

Last night, I watched an episode of Ghost Whisperer. I never watched that show before, mostly because I am allergic to Jennifer Love Hewitt. Spoilers for last night's Ghost Whisperer. )
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I usually try not to work on the weekends, but yesterday I was in the office office until 10pm at night. Right now I'm in my home office, and I'll be heading into the office office later today. ::sigh::

All this, when there is Vampire Diaries to be caught up on! I'm three weeks behind! lol

In other news, I am going to be beta'ing a German-language fanfic. This makes me so squee-ful, it is ridiculous! It's Jeeves & Wooster D/s. In German. Yessssssss.

Thrift.

Oct. 9th, 2009 02:05 am
sydni_64: (crackagents)
In other news, I have made some recent clothes shopping trips to a few thrift stores.

I've never been much of a thrift store shopper. But boy, have they changed since I was in high school. It used to be racks and racks of stupid message T's with armpit stains. I'm not above a message T--at all--but come on.

Now, in all the stores I checked out, the merchandise seems so much nicer and better organized.

I am really starting to pull together a nice professional wardrobe, for very, very little money. This is awesome because I was really starting to get a little depressed and disheartened by what I could find in retail stores. (I can't be spending in excess of $100 an item just so I can look professional and stylish! Agh!)

I found a nice, autumnal denim dress with cute little snaps down the front and an embroidered collar. I also got a few really cute button-down shirts, and a nice pair of striped brown pants.

I have a sexy (but appropriately modest) brown wool pencil skirt that stops just below the knee. It shows no signs of wear at all. I looked up the designer online (Doncaster) and the skirt would cost about $175 new. I paid $3.99.

Today, I went to another thrift store and made another great coup: a stunning V-neck, below-the-knee, little black dress from Talbot's with a beautifully flattering silhouette, in a knit fabric that hangs perfectly on my frame. Besides the original price tag being missing, I honestly cannot detect any evidence that the thing was ever even worn. I think someone must have bought it, worn it once or twice, and then just given it away. I went on the Talbot's website. Average price for a dress like this? $149.00 My price? $5.99

Now that's much better.
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So, I finished watching Season One of Mad Men. I haven't watched seasons two or three yet, though, and am hoping to stay spoiler-free!

Spoilery for Season One of Mad Men. )
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God help me, I'm sitting here watching Discovery Health Channel crap. First, it was a shock-umentary about a woman who delivered a lithopedion (warning for shocking medical condition, miscarriage triggery, and generally disturbing medical images).

Now, I'm watching I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant, which has become something of a guilty pleasure, God knows why. Well, I kind of know why. It's because I'm secretly afraid this could happen to me and I want to make sure I know what to look for!!

I still have two episodes of Vampire Diaries that I need to catch up on, but I'm not set up to watch those yet, so Discovery Health crap, it is. Oh, well.

God help me. Well, tomorrow there's Glee and Eastwick!
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I watched last week's episode of Glee and am watching tonight's as well. I really like this show. I love tv musicals, I love high school soaps, and this year I am all about the pop culture comfort food.

Mad Men. )

I watched the pilot episode of the HBO series Hung. Not sure how much more of this I'll watch although I do have the whole first season ready to go.  Hung )

Right now, though, just quivering with anticipation for this week's episode of Eastwick. Squeee!
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The Eastwick pilot is available online: http://www.hulu.com/watch/97658/eastwick-pilot

So, by all means, watch it! :D

I'm rewatching it now and revelling in the whole sexy-Paul-Gross-back-on-American-TV-being-sexy thing. ::happysigh::
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Biding my time until Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami. I gave up on the Emmys. It was boring. I was sick of seeing 30 Rock, a show I can't stand, go home with every award. And I was growing very weary of that damn buffoon Tracy Morgan. Yuck.

I need a Kardashian chaser, stat!

I got a LOT of work done today. Maybe too much. I'm exhausted. But it's good to have made a dent.
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Well, my desk is actually, umm, visible to the naked eye. This is wonderful. Now if I could just learn how to keep it that way!

Also, I finally did something I have been meaning to do for a while: organize my jewelry. Things get tangled or go missing... I've realized that it actually creates a huge feeling of disorder, chaos, and guilt in my life, which I simply do not need! I went out to the grocery store and bought a box of those snack-sized Ziploc bags. They were perfect for the job, and now my earrings are all in pairs, my necklaces are not one big tangle, and my rings have given up their moonlighting gig as misguided pendants. Yay!

So far, so good, with this Sunday. Of course it began with a cute chick flick on Bravo: Practical Magic, with Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman. There was magic, sisters/best friends, wise aunts, and oh, yes, Aidan Quinn. Awesome.

Yesterday, DBF and I took a nice walk along the beach. Lovely! Gotta try to get more of that in before the weather gets too cold.

Now I need to sit down at my clean desk and get some major work done. Alas. I usually try not to work on the weekends, but it can't be helped. There's just too much to do. Later on today, though, I hope to just chill out and relax.

Yayyy!!!

Sep. 17th, 2009 08:03 pm
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May I just say how ridiculously excited I am that Vampire Diaries is on?!?!

Umm, I'm pretty excited. Now, if I can just get used to calling Paul Wasilewski "Paul Wesley," I'll be all set.