Thursday, March 31, 2011

To My Fabulous Readers (that means YOU!)

Dear fabulous readers,

I think I've been remiss lately because I haven't told you how much I appreciate the fact that you choose to read my blog and to take time out of your day to leave me thoughtful, genuine comments!  I know how frustrating it can be to never get any sort of response or to feel unappreciated and the last thing I want is for YOU to feel that way. Because I appreciate you guys SO much. And to show my appreciation I do my best to always respond to every single comment and to visit your blogs and leave you comments too! But, I haven't been so good at just coming right out and saying how much your words mean to me.

Remember when I was down on myself and feeling really nervous that I wouldn't get an internship for next year? Well it was your comments that cheered me up! And remember when I shared that my grandfather's health was declining? Your supportive comments were so reassuring. And most recently, when I wrote about how my husband and I handle money in what was probably way too much detail, your comments made me feel like I wasn't completely insane for oversharing. SO THANK YOU!!!!

Source: None via Alisha on Pinterest

Thank you so much! Each and every one of you (even those of you who read and don't comment!) make me smile on a daily basis!


Monday, March 28, 2011

Money and Marriage: Part III

Alright ladies and gents, this is my last post about how Neill and I handle finances. I've dished on the money situation when we dated and then when we moved in together. In this post, I want to share how we are handling things now that we are married.

For Neill and I, being open and honest with each other about our finances and our financial goals is VERY important. So, we've been having lots and lots of frank conversations about spending, saving, and goal setting. We try to be 100% transparent with one another and we've decided to take a big step that will help us with this. 

In my last post, I mentioned that we opened up a joint saving account a while ago that we've used in addition to each of our personal saving accounts. Now, however, having our individual accounts just doesn't seem to feel right anymore. Even though both of us have said that whatever we save individually is really for us, we want to make that thought a reality.  So, just last week we totally revamped our organization. With this new set-up neither one of us will keep a personal savings account. We'll only put money into our joint savings. This certainly wasn't something I would have wanted to do when I first moved in or even when we first got married, but right now it makes the most sense for us.

We decided to keep a total of two joint savings accounts so that we can save money for different purposes. One is a Save for a Rainy Day Account. This is our six month emergency fund that is not to be touched unless we have . . . an emergency. The second is a Save to Spend Account. This is where we can save for vacations or a new piece of furniture. The only catch? Our numbers aren't quite where we would like them to be. So, we've started a competition to get into savings gear. We each have a savings goal (different, to accommodate our salary difference) and the first person to reach their goal wins 500 dollars out of the Save to Spend account.

A bonus of merging our savings is that it motivated us to finally set up an emergency fund. We've always known where we might pull money from if we found ourselves in a dire situation, but this is the first time actually setting that money aside and working to see the number go up. I'm really excited about our new plan because I feel like we are a bajiliion steps closer to following through on our new years resolution to be financially secure.

I don't have any secrets to successfully negotiating finances in a relationship, but communicating and being flexible seem to really help. Since we both keep an eye on our finances and discuss them pretty regularly we are able to realize when something just isn't working. And, we aren't afraid to switch things up a bit. Who knows? Maybe in another year we'll decide to merge our checking accounts, although I must admit that idea doesn't appeal to either Neill or I right now. 

Finances can be a touchy subject to talk about and I think the uneasiness surrounding money-talk makes it extra difficult for couples. So, I thought I'd quiet that little voice in my head that says discussing money isn't appropriate and lay it all out there for everyone. I hope you've enjoyed reading about how Neill and I handle finances and I'd love to hear more from you  about how you handle money in your relationships! What are your thoughts on merging finances completely? Do you keep a private saving account? What motivates you to save money?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Money and Marriage Part II

In my first post, I documented how Neill and I handled money throughout the first two years of our relationship. You can read about it here. Once we moved in together and I finally found a job, we realized that we seriously needed to get real about how much money we made versus how much money we spent. So, we made our very first budget in good ol' excel!

To do this, we made a list of all of our monthly expenses. We had 24 in all--from groceries, restaurant/bars, phone bills, each household bill (e.g., electric), car insurance, medical bills, money we put in savings, public transportation, etc. Then, we looked through our bank statements and wrote down the amount we spent on each category for the preceding three months. Finally, we averaged these three numbers to determine how much money we typically spent in each category. For example, on groceries we spent $613 one month, $498 the next month, and then $402 the month after that. This averages out to spending $504.33 every month on groceries.

Then, we looked at how much we were spending each month on average for personal expenses (e.g., buying a new shirt),  bills, and joint expenses (e.g., going out for dinner together). All of this gave us a good snap-shot of what we were spending or, in other words, the money going out. We found out we spent an average of $970 dollars a month on joint expenses (groceries, restaurants, gas, and miscellaneous items), and we had an average of $3,566.17 hundred dollars of household bills per month (mortgage plus all the monthly bills). Then there were our personal expenses. The next step was to look at the money going in and compare it to the money going out. Obviously, you would ideally hope to find that the money coming in far outweighs the money going out because any extra money could be spent on frivolous shopping sprees put in savings.

Taking a cold hard look at our bank statements and comparing our in-put versus our out-put helped us realize that if we wanted a hope to save the sort of money we wanted to save, we had to readjust our monthly spending habits. Since most of the monthly bills were fixed, one area that we targeted was how much money we spent at restaurants and bars. For example, we reasoned that if we were spending an average of $500 on groceries every month, we probably didn't need to be spending an average of $300 dollars on going out to eat/drink. So, we developed a budget to help us curb our spending on non-essential items so that we could put more money in savings.

Awesome, right?


I must admit that I don't think we ever truly stuck to our goal spending in each category. Keeping up with a budget every month is time-consuming and hard work! But, our first foray into money management together was still really helpful. It raised our awareness and forced us to talk about our financial details more than we ever had and it set a precedent in our relationship that each of us would be open and honest about how finances. Plus, it gave us a chance to really discuss what our financial goals were. Looking through our past spending also showed us that a lot of what we spent money on were joint expenses. So, we decided to open up a joint checking account. 

With the addition of the joint checking account, we had five bank accounts between us! We each had a personal checking account, a personal savings account, and then one joint checking account. Our respective paychecks got automatically deposited in our personal checking accounts and then each time we got paid we would transfer a certain amount of money to the joint account, a percentage of money to our personal savings, and keep a percentage of money in our personal checking accounts to pay our credit cards and use as we pleased. We would use the joint account to pay for groceries and anything we did together. But, the boundaries were (and still are) pretty fluid. If I needed something but had no cash left, I was free to use the joint account. Similarly, if our joint account was empty and we wanted to order food one of us would cover it. While this is basically the opposite of sticking to a budget, it made sense to us.

Around this time, we started to realize that if one of us spent a big chunk of change it would inevitably effect the other. So, it became less acceptable for one of us to make a big purchase without consulting the other. Do we always consult one another on things we buy impulsively? No. For example, I didn't need to get Neill's permission before I went on my recent shoe buying binge and Neill doesn't need my permission before he buys accessories for his guitar. So how do we know what we need to talk about? Since we don't usually keep a lot of extra cash in our checking accounts, a good rule of thumb is that we need to talk it over if we would have to take money out of our savings account to buy it. Not that we need permission, but rather the conversations are framed like "I want this. How can we make this happen?"But, honestly - we probably talk over most things we are planning to buy. And I think if either one of us was constantly buying things impulsively we'd address it.

Anyways, after opening up a joint checking account a joint credit card was the next logical step. Shopping at Costco was actually the impetus for this because Costco doesn't take any credit cards except the one they issue. So, we decided to open one together. Plus, if we wanted to make big purchases together it seemed to make sense to have a joint credit card. Even though I knew it made logical sense, I was definitely aware that opening a credit card together was a big step to take. I remember being pretty nervous about what might happen and I refused to be the primary name on the account! I guess I was worried about being in charge of a credit card that I didn't have complete control over.

We've basically stuck to this system, with a few added tweaks, for the last three years. Our attention to finances as waxed and wane--some months making a big effort to keep our spending down and other months allowing our selves to put things on the credit card and worry about it later. However, just this month we've made some big changes!  

Have you ever made a budget? Where you able to stick to it? If so, what are your secrets? How much do you and your partner talk to one another about things that you buy? Do you keep a stash of money that you're allowed to spend however you want? How do you manage having a joint account or joint credit cards?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Its My Birthday!

I was born on March 23, 1986 and today on March 23, 2011 I'm turning the big TWO FIVE aka the big TWENTY FIVE. As in I've been alive and kicking for a quarter of a century. As in my twenties are exactly half over.

As in I might be experiencing a little bit of birthday anxiety. I'm not afraid of getting old per se, I'm just afraid of time slipping me by.

Its kind of like how I always hated Sunday evenings when I was growing up. Sunday evening meant the weekend was ending and Monday morning was right around the corner. And who wants the weekend to be over? No one. So I guess I kind of feel like I'm in the Sunday evening of my life. Which I realize sounds absolutely freaking RIDICULOUS. Pure nonsense.

I've been slowly warming up to the idea of turning another year older and these two images are helping me get excited to celebrate my birthday!   

Source: None via Marina on Pinterest

Happy birthday to me!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Money and Marriage

Sometimes, one of the hardest things to negotiate in a marriage is money. This can definitely be a struggle in any relationship, but marriage can add the complex layer of fully joining finances (or not). And as it so happens, money is also one of those things that polite society just doesn't talk about. It can be tricky to talk finances with family and friends and I've noticed that, at least in my own life, when it is discussed people tend to paint broad strokes and avoid getting down to the nitty gritty details.

This hesitancy to divulge makes total sense. The number in your checking account or on your credit card bill is personal. Plus, because people rarely talk about this there is also the nagging fear of whether your numbers match up with what everyone else has. And god forbid they don't. What does that mean? I know I can get anxious just thinking that maybe everyone else on the planet is saving gajillions more dollars than me or that my credit card balance is exponentially larger. Yikes. Makes me nervous just to think about. Given this money shroud of secrecy and all of the feelings wrapped up in what each number means, it can be HARD to talk money with your significant other. Damn hard.

No wonder people fight about it, right?

So, I thought I'd share with you the money history of my relationship with Neill. I'll be detailing how we handled finances throughout our relationship and how it has changed over time. 

When Neill and I first started dating we each had a personal checking out and a personal savings account. I had some small mutual funds that were set up for me by my family and Neill had a retirement account started. Neill had a job and I was a college student who worked during school breaks and got money from my parents. Neill lived in his own apartment and paid his rent and bills, while I lived in a dorm and was on a meal plan that were both paid for by my parents. Obviously, we started in very different places!

The first two years of our relationship we dated long distance. While only seeing each other every other weekend sucked, I think living in different cities protected us from dealing with money issues early on in the relationship. For example, I don't think we talked about how much money we had saved, if we had credit card debt, or Neill's income. And we certainly didn't have to talk to one another before deciding to buy something. When we saw each other, Neill usually paid for dinner or whatever we were doing. But, once in a while I would use the cash I had to pick up the tab. As you can see, money between us has never been fifty-fifty.

A few weeks before I graduated college Neill officially became a homeowner and when I was finished with school I moved in with him. I think we had some general discussions about what he was expecting financially from me, but the expectations were pretty low. We knew we wanted to live together and so we figured we would make it work somehow. At this point, Neill paid the mortgage and all of the bills. I, on the other hand, was an unemployed college student with my eye on graduate school. I wanted to find a paid position working on a research study, but I couldn't find anything. So in order to get the experience necessary to be accepted into a clinical psychology doctoral program, I started working on a volunteer basis in two different research labs. Yup. You read that right. Volunteer. As in for free ninety nine. As in Neill was pretty much completely supporting me, with a few hundred dollars from my mom every once in a while.

While this arrangement let me build my CV, living completely on Neill's dime brought up all sorts of weird feelings for me. For example, I remember when we would go grocery shopping I felt like I had to ask Neill's permission before I put anything in the cart. Plus, with taking on a mortgage Neill's monthly expenses went up. Even though Neill has always been EXTREMELY generous and never once made me feel like he differentiated between what was his versus what was ours, I hated feeling like I didn't have any cash to burn.

Thankfully, after six long months I finally got a job. I wasn't making much - but at least I had a full-time salaried job and I was earning an income! Neill still made about five times my salary, but bringing home a paycheck made me feel good about being able to contribute to our household. It was during these few months that we made our first household budget -- an excel document that I still have saved to my desktop.

In my next post, I'll share how we made our budget and how we decided to open our first joint checking account. Until then, I'd love to continue this discussion in the comments. How did you and your partner handle finances in the early stage of the relationship? Have you ever been in the position of not earning an income or being the breadwinner? Is it easy for you to talk about money with family and friends?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A little More About Me

I saw this on Love is Home and thought I'd give it a whirl!

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Sipping Pina Coladas on the beach in Jamaica with my husband

What is your biggest fear?
my loved ones dying, developing Multiple Sclerosis like my father

Which figures do you most identify with?

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Sometimes I let fear dictate what I do and don't do

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

What do you most value in your friends?
They bring laughter into my life

What words or phrases do you most overuse?

What is your most favorite journey?
Developing into who i will be

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

What is your favorite occupation?

What do you dislike most about your appearance?
My clothes

What is your greatest regret?
I honestly don't have any.

Who is the greatest love of your life?
 My husband

Where and when were you happiest?
Jamaica on our honeymoon

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I'd be better at making friends

What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
My relationship with my husband

What is your most treasured posession?
my family heirlooms, pictures
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Feeling worthless

Where would you like to live?
I'd love to try out Portland or NYC

What is your most marked characteristic?
My husband says honesty.

What is your greatest extravagance?
My engagement ring

What are the qualities you like most in a man?
strong values, ambition

Who are your favorite writers?
Margaret Atwood

How would you like to die?
Before I lose any cognitive or physical functioning

What is your motto?
Wherever you go, there you are.

So now that I've shared with you, tell me some of your answers!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

My Weekend in New York

A big thank you to all of you who shared with me about what your relationship is like with your grandparents! Since I didn't have a reliable internet connection I couldn't respond, but I want you to know it was wonderful to read your comments!

I had such a great time in New York this weekend! It was really important to me to see my grandfather and I feel so lucky that I got to see him now, before his health deteriorates further. Unfortunately, he isn't doing too well. When I saw him in August he was still able to carry on a conversation,  but now he has difficulty finding words and what he does says doesn't make much sense. His doctors think he might have had a series of small strokes, but it is hard to tell. I'm pretty sure he knew who I was though and so it was wonderful to hear him say "good morning, darling" every day.

We spent most of the weekend around Bayside, which is part of Queens.

image via
We arrived into town on Thursday afternoon and went to my aunt's house to say hi and have a quick catch up. My aunt, a clinical social worker, had some clients to see that evening so we got out of her way and met up with my cousins for dinner. Well, technically we saw my mom's cousin and her two kids. So, that makes them my cousins once removed? second cousins? Either way, it was really fun! I hadn't seen them since August and it was good to catch up. They are in their first year of college and sophomore year of high school, respectively, and it was fun to hear about their lives. They even taught me a cool new phone trick - bumping! Sounds dirty, right? But, its not. It is the new way to exchange phone numbers. You can literally just bump two phones together! I'm still amazed by this. Which, of course makes me feel old.

On Friday, everyone hung out at my aunt's house and then in the afternoon we went shopping. You know what else makes me feel old? I found some stuff at  J. Jill and Cold Water Creek that I really liked. Yes. Apparently, I dress like a sixty year old lady.

I got a cardigan, a striped boat neck tee, and a simple black dress from J. Jill and a printed cardigan from Cold Water Creek.   

After shopping, my aunt had a big surprise. She made reservations for us to eat at Peter Luger - one of the oldest and most respected steakhouses in New York! I do love me some steak and after doing some quick googling and reading the rave reviews my mouth was watering! The place has a real old school vibe to it and the menu features only the classics. We ordered so much food and ate until we felt like we were in danger of having to be rolled out of the restaurant. Neill snapped this picture of me right before we started eating. You can see the steak for four in the middle of the table as well as the german potatoes we ordered. We also got onion rings, creamed spinach, and a tomato and onion salad. 

Yummo! My family loves to eat and we spent most of dinner joking about what fabulous appetites we all have :) We washed the steak down with big spoonfuls of shlag, or whip cream. Here is my mom with the sundae we split.

You can bet we all went to bed very full that night! On Saturday, after hanging out with my grandfather in the morning, my aunt took Neill and I into Manhattan to see Avenue Q. Before the show, we got a chance to walk around a bit in the craziness that is times square. I love Chicago, but I've got to admit - New York has us trumped on this. We just don't have anything that compares.

Avenue Q was hilarious! Neill and I don't go out to see shows very often (like basically never), but we both had so much fun that we decided to try and catch more performances in Chicago. After heading back into the city we ordered a spinach and meatball pizza, played catch phrase, and all hung out until it was time for bed. 

And that pretty much brings us back to the present. Sunday morning consisted of one last bagel with cream cheese and lox and saying lots of goodbyes. Now, I'm safe and sound back in Chicago and luxuriating in being able to sprawl out on my own bed.

What was your weekend like? Have you ever been to New York? What was your favorite part of the city? Or, do you have another favorite city?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Visiting my Grandfather

Neill and I are taking a break from our Chicago lives to go visit my family in New York for the rest of the week! My mom's sister is there and my grandfather, whom I call Zadie, lives with her. I can't wait to see them!

I'm particularly looking forward to seeing my grandfather. He and I have always had a special relationship and he's been like a second father to me. Growing up, I always admired his knowledge, wisdom, and kindness. He has given me so much good advice throughout the years, but there is one piece that really sticks out to me. We were in the car, driving through a toll booth. Instead of impatiently trying to get through as fast as humanly possible, my grandfather asked the worker how he was doing, exchanged a few pleasantries, and wished him a good day.  I must have commented on this because you know what he told me? It doesn't cost anything extra to be nice.

Simple. But, so true.

My grandfather is in his 90s and isn't doing too well these days. He is starting to get confused about things and we can't talk like we used to. I hate that every time I see him I worry that it will be the last time. And I hate that I wrote that, but it is the truth.

Anyways, I better end this before I start to cry.

Zadie and me in Florida

What is your relationship like with your grandparents?

Monday, March 7, 2011

Tweet Tweet

I've gone and done it. Made a twitter acount, that is. See those tweets to the right? Those are me! I created a twitter account because I realized that there are lots of small things that I want to share with y'all, but that never make it on to the blog. Like what? Like these awesome erasures from West Elm. Isn't is funny to imagine me pulling one of these bad boys out during class? 

Or the fact that I'm watching Anthony Bourdain on No Reservations and thinking about what a silver fox he is. Don't these seem like interesting tidbits?

So help a girl out and follow me at Because the thing is, I want to be following you so I can read your tidbits too! But, I'm lost as to how to find you! So follow me! Send me some tweets! Help me figure this twitter business out!

Spring Break

As of this morning, I am officially on Spring Break. Its 45 degrees outside today, which is basically the closest Chicago gets to Spring in March, and I have no classes, no meeting, and nothing due. How should I enjoy the day?

I was thinking of taking a walk over to The Ark on Milwaukee Avenue to do some thrifting and then maybe stopping at Forever Yogurt for some pistachio flavored frozen yogurt. 

Here's to a wonderful Monday! 

Saturday, March 5, 2011

February: A Month in Review

Well, its about that time again. Time to see how I did in keeping up with my New Year's Resolutions. I'm feeling a little nervous because I know I have I let some things slip, but I'm hoping that holding myself accountable will pay off in the end.

Snapshot of February
Train coming into the station

1. My first resolution was to prioritize my thesis and get it done. At the end of January, I set a goal to have my results section completed by the end of February. I would say that I met this goal about 90% of the way. Things are pretty much set, but I still have a few more hours of work to do before I can call it done. Once the results section is done, I have four more steps to complete: write up a description of the sample I used for the methods section, write my discussion section, format my thesis/submit for a format check, and complete an oral defense. By the end of March I want to have my sample fully written up and at least the start of an outline done for my discussion.

2. My second goal was to make time for my VIPs. I wanted to increase the effort I put into my relationships with family and friends in order to combat the nasty habit I have of putting school first. This month Neill and I celebrated Valentine's day to together, I got together with my aunt and uncle who were in from out of town, and I've made an effort to call my MIL more (I heart her). But, I'm not so sure I've been the best friend and I think my mother is feeling a little out of touch. In March, I want to make sure to focus on being the sort of friend I would like to have.

3. Last month, I thought Neill and I were doing great with our goal of being more financially secure. And then this month happened and we hit a few (expensive) stumbling blocks. First, Neill and I decided to treat ourselves to a wonderfully romantic, but costly Valentine's day dinner at Graham Elliot. In and of itself this wouldn't have been too bad, but then I discovered that I couldn't register for summer classes until I paid the university 800 dollars. Apparently, I never paid my 400 dollar activity fee for the fall semester and then I also owed them for spring semester. Ugh. And then on top of this, at the end of the month I had a lapse of self-control and went shoe shopping.  

Also, Neill and I decided to splurge and take a week long trip to Jamaica this May. Pretty much the antithesis of my "save save save" mantra, right? But, it is his cousin's wedding and it was important to both of us to go. And then we figured that since we're paying for the flight down there we might as well stay a while and enjoy ourselves. So, we've committed ourselves to spending about two thousand dollars from our savings on a vacation. If that's not a good reason to get back on track with saving, I don't know what is.

4. Lastly, I wanted to focus on being healthy. Again, I'm not sure how much progress I've made in this area. On the good side, I've started taking a multivitamin, drinking more water, eating more salads, and trying to snack on things like cucumbers and peppers instead of chips. We've also cut out almost all prepackaged (and preservative laden) bread from our diet and have replaced it with homemade bread. Yum! But, on the not so healthy side? I still have a sweets problem and I'm working out even less than I was last month.  It would be a big improvement if I could make it to the gym at least twice a week in March and keep a better eye on my calories.  

How are your resolutions going? Do you have any suggestions on how to keep my motivation up?

Guilford Press 50% off Sale

Once a year, Guilford Press does a huge 50% off sale for full time students. This is the best time to stock up on all of of the pricey treatment manuals. Check out these crazy savings!

Even though 260 is still a ton of money, without the discount all of these books would have cost more than 500 dollars. If you are a student, you can use the promotional code STUW to get the same discount. Then, at check out you will have to enter your student ID number and the school you attend.

Another super nerdy thing I got excited about? Most of the books for sale on this site allow you to read large chunks of the book for free using google preview and even download a sample chapter at no cost. I've already downloaded about twenty different chapters from different books.

Happy Reading!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Thank God It's Friday!

Wowsa this week has been busy! There have been so many things swirling around my head, but I didn't do a very good job of making the time to sit down and write about them. Hence, the brain dump.

I saw this delicious spicy kale lasagna recipe on Annie's Eats. Doesn't that sound delicious? I wonder how much Kale I would have to eat to make up for eating homemade chocolate peanut spread for every meal. Probably a lot, right?

Have you heard Kim Kardashian's new song, Jam?

First time I listened - boring.
Second time I listened - boring.
Third time - growing on me. Don't judge!
What do you think?

Speaking of new music, my favorite artist under 10 years old - Willow Smith - released a new song, 21st Century Girl. Its not as catchy as Whip My Hair. Right? But I still think she is freaking awesome. Dear Willow, Can we be friend? Kthanksbye.

Speaking of young girls making music and being awesome.

I just don't know what to do about music that degrades women (or any other group, for that matter). On one hand, I wish I could completely dismiss songs with offensive lyrics. That seems like the "right" thing to do. On the other hand  . . .  I like some of that music. It is fun to dance to and some of the best exercise music too. So what is a girl to do?

There have been so many crazy celebrities this week making a fool out of themselves. Umm hello Charlie Sheen. But this business with John Galliano is particularly upsetting for me. As a Jew, I'm offended by his comments. And quite honestly, entering rehab does not excuse any of that business. Its interesting, because in France that sort of hate speech is illegal so Galliano might actually be charged for his tirades. What do you think about this? While some might look down upon that sort of talk here in the US, we as a society tend to value free speech above almost all else. I'm torn.

On a COMPLETELY different note, Neill and I got invited to his cousin's wedding this May in Ocho Rios JAMAICA! We are so excited! We went to Negril for our honeymoon and had such a wonderful time. We are looking forward to returning to Jamaica. We've decided to tack on a few extra days and make a real vacation out of it. Thinking of the beautiful water and the hot weather helps is helping me get through this tail end of winter. I suppose it should also be motivation for me to stay away from that chocolate spread, huh? 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Shoes. Omg Shoes. Let's Get Some Shoes.

Before I tell you about the shoes I just blew my budget on, let's all take a moment to laugh at this classic youtube video.

You know what's not so funny? I took a little trip to DSW with Grace and because I have absolutely zero self-control I left with THREE pairs or shoes.

But you see, I had to get all three. Or rather, if I was going to get one pair I had to get all of them because they are each different and there was no way I was going to leave empty-handed. I think you'll agree with me once I show you.

See? A pair of comfortable black flats that have the cutest lace up detail on the back,  a pair of fun, mustard yellow flats with a flower detail on the toe, and one pair of super practical black sporty slip-ons. All necessities . . . kind of.

The big problem? Finding a place to put them. Just over a year ago I shared with you a complete list of every single pair of shoes I owned. Since then I've done some purging (and let's be honest, some shopping), so I'm curious to see how things have changed. I copy and pasted my original list below, but I've crossed off shoes I no longer own or comments that no longer apply and put updates in italics. For fun, I also put them into categories.

To Deal With the Weather . . .
green uggs
pink uggs
purple uggs (which for some reason, i never wear)
brown northface wintery boots
green galoshes
black hunter rain boots

Summer Loving . . . 
black pair of fit flops
black flip-flops
green flip-flops
gold leather strappy sandal i bought somewhere in europe
black gladiator type sandal i also bought in europe, but that I don't wear
maryjane crocs (these give me blisters so I don't wear them)
ballet flat crocs
summery flats with a peep toe that gave me blisters the three times i've worn them
nude, suedey strappy sandals 
brown birkenstock sandals
pink t-strap sandals

I Could Wear These to A Wedding if I Had To . . . 
black pointy steve madden high heels
black leather heels
bronze heels 
black nine west heels

Everything Else . . .
black birkenstock clogs
colorful checkered slip on vans (come to think of it, i'm not sure where these are)
stripey slip on vans
purple and black flowery vans
gym shoes
black slip on shoes that are semi work appropriate, which i obviously don't wear
brown shoes that i bought for work, but then never wore because they are too small
heeled black ankle boots that i've never worn b/c they "just aren't me" worn a few times
old lady pumps that i wore to my grad school interviews, but haven't worn since
black ninewest boots
black old navy canvas boots (these are old but never made it on the original list)
brown cia bella leather boots
black wedges with a canvas sole (these are old but never made it on the original list)
black blowfish flats
yellow boc flats
black privo flats
black suede shoes with a small heel

Right now, I'm up from 26 pairs to 30. But since two of the pairs I added should have actually been included in the original list, its really only like going from 28 to 30. Not bad, right? But, these two extra shoes must have been the tipping point because it has become full fledged shoe chaos in my house. I'm in desperate need of an organization solution.

Are you a shoes girl? How many pairs do you have? And please help a sister out here - where do you put them all?