HBD, KBD!

A little older, a little wiser.

It’s been a pretty busy time for me, and I’m sorry that I’ve neglected JLYBM the past couple of weeks.  Being more regular at posting on this blog is one of my goals this year, so there’s time to improve ;).  Aside from other types of running around, birthday celebration seems has come in different forms, on different days over a few weeks.  A big step in our backyard project was completed a couple Saturdays ago, so it’s fun to say that my husband built me a pergola for my birthday.  We had a bunch of friends over for a backyard launch bbq, which was also something of a birthday party.  Don’t forget day-of festivities, including the traditional gourmet hamburger dinner!  Also, a good friend of mine went into labor on the morning of my birthday, and gave birth to a baby girl, which I consider part of my celebration story this year.  So much excitement!  Nothing like an action-packed month to make you feel your age!  All good stuff, though, as being busy and surrounded by people I love and things that I’m interested in is hardly anything to feel deflated by.  Getting older is looking up!

It’s something of a milestone birthday, so I am trying to acknowledge and appreciate that with everything that I’m doing.  I wake up, press snooze, and automatically think, “You’re 35 – you can’t be this tired.”  When I look in the mirror: “This is what 35 looks like — yup, still you!”  When I’m commuting to work, looking out the car window:  “How am I seeing things differently at my age?”  It’s common to mourn the gradual loss of youth,  but I actually feel like youth is sometimes overrated.  Here I am, in my mid-thirties (officially, like, right in the middle) and it’s a great time!  I earn my own money, I can see the fruits of my labor (inclusive of education, earlier-life lessons, career choices), I feel like I finally have a grasp on what’s important to me.  I think I’m enjoying things a lot more than I did when I was in my twenties — a time when I was never sure if what I had and who I was was good enough.

HBD, KBD!  Cheers to making 35 count!

Working for the Weekend: Comfies at the Office

There’s nothing I look more forward to during the work week than getting back to Weekend KB — me on the weekend!  Comfortable with myself, confident in who I am at home with my husband, hanging out with my friends, and feeling free from workplace and public scrutiny.  Sure, there’s plenty to enjoy about the week, but nothing beats that feeling.  Strangely, and hilariously enough, being able to wear sweatpants at work has helped see me through to the weekend.

I understand the initial concern with sweatpants becoming a fashion trend.  What – did we all just give up?  Is the easy-access elastic waistband no longer a thing that makes others uneasy in public?  How are so many people wearing workout clothes and not working out?  Gross.  Classless… wait… hmm… comfortable!

e84ca36ac4eafae0463357befb63ca28

… and these days (at least where I work) acceptable to wear at the office, like, in a professional setting.  This is amazing!  I feel like all day, every day at work, all I want is for it to be the weekend so I can just be at home in my comfies (what we call sweats in my house)!  It’s one step closer to Netflix and Chill!

Now, obviously, there are some rules.  You can’t just wear any sweat pants.  No, these aren’t the sweat pants you wore in high school gym class.  They’re not the kind that creepy guys on the bus wear.  The silhouette is cleaner, the fit is more flattering, and a variety of fabrications have come into play to elevate these bottoms, putting sweats, joggers, harem pants to casual, street chic.

Dressing up your comfies in order to not appear that you’re just wearing sweats is a fun little game.  It’s diversion, slight of hand, and illusion at its best!  Styling is key.  If you’re going to wear sweats at the top of the trend, you can easily outfit with a drape-y tucked in blouse and heels.  Heels!  Take advantage of the elastic at the bottom of the pant legs, take those cuffs up and show off those ankles!  That’s the fancy way.  The even more effortless way to pass these off as stylish is to ride the leisure vibe.  Go ahead, pair it with your favorite sneakers!  Take advantage of things like the waistline and tuck in a comfy v-neck tee for that sleek, high-waisted look.  Or just throw on a button down chambray or collared shirt.  Accessories add intention to the look: understated, but shiny metallic earrings, necklace, bracelets, rings, maybe a little bling.  Sassy, cool sunnies for the face to add a little attitude and mystery.  Leather tote or hip backpack in tow.  “Yeah – I meant to look this cool.  And I’m hella comfortable, too.”

The rules aren’t hard to follow, and comfort is even less hard to achieve.  I’m all for the sweatpants trend, and I love that it puts me in a better position at work to feel more like myself – sometimes slouchy, but not sloppy.  Feeling like Weekend KB in the workplace allows for a very different kind of confidence.  The kind that reminds me of who I am – just a casual, hardworking, lovable, playful, smart, respectable, girl… and professional corporate employee!  Suckers.  Getting away with wearing sweats at work gives me an upper hand.  If I’m working for the weekend, I’m going to be comfortable doing it!  Added aces that I look and feel good, too!

How do you feel about the sweatpants trend?

Mixed Tapes

IMG_7935

Does anyone make mixed tapes anymore?  Side A and Side B are a thing of the past, for sure, but I wonder if, these days, creating a playlist has the same sentiment as making mixed tapes did back in the day.  This was basically a means of soul connecting – by way of compiling your favorite songs, the ones that run you in and out of every emotion (and especially the ones that moved your romantic core) you were creating a musical intimacy with the mixed tape recipient.  You wanted them to listen to all the carefully chosen, painstakingly arranged melodies and achy, truthful lyrics that told a story about your longing, and would make them feel what those songs made you feel.  You would have shared something of an out-of-body experience with the listener.  Emotional audio courtship.

I might have been too young during the days of mixed tapes, and therefore never received one.  I’ve never had someone thoughtfully arrange songs for me with secretly placed meaning and affection.  Burned CDs from my friends in college don’t count.  A few discs of ripped folky-guitar love ballads (including artists like Matt Nathanson, Joshua Radin, Keaton Simons, Jason Mraz… ooh, sensitive seduction at it’s best) I’d received from a guy I dated in my late 20’s is the closest I got.  A similar effect, I would say.  It was musical evidence that this guy was in touch with his emotions, respected me immensely, and was crushing on me, acoustic-style.

What songs would my dream mixed tape have on it?  What would I hope someone who gave me a mixed tape wanted to convey in this scrappy, romantic compilation?  What if I received a mixed tape from someone whose musical taste was terrible?

Have you ever made a mixed tape for someone?  Received one made for you?