Friday, October 31, 2014

Favorite Things

Urban Outfitters ring holder, Owl mug & letter from a friend}

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Can we talk about this scarf? I know I've mentioned how soft and warm it is before, but I need to mention it again. It's soft and it's warm and the fact that it's as big as a blanket is a huge plus. 

If you're wondering what that weird gray thing is it's a computer riser. It lifts my computer to stand at a comfortable angle, so that it's easier on my hands and wrists to type all day at work. You might want to think about getting one. (By the way, it comes as a pack of two; one for home, one for work!)

In January of 2011, I went to Israel on birthright and became friends with Shaked, who was an Israeli soldier at the time. Two weeks ago, we decided to become pen pals and she sent me her first letter a few days ago! Yay!

A few fun links:

 What's on your Never To Do list?

 Lauren Conrad's DIY mermaid costume is freaking awesome!

 Daniel Radcliffe is a rap genius!

 What is feminist makeupping?

 As the Bird Flies is chock full of inspiration and tips for NaNoWriMo: Writing checklist, writing playlist, how to get a NaNoWriMo head start, and how to write quickly. Who else is doing NaNoWriMo? 

 Hogwarts background sounds -- perfect to listen to while writing. 

 Sponsor love:




Are you doing anything fun for Halloween?
I'm dressing up as Mary Poppins at work today!



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Thursday, October 30, 2014

My Work Essentials

Now that I've been at Westchester Magazine for six months (though it somehow feels like I've been working there for both two years and only two weeks), I know what my everyday work essentials are AKA what I need to do my job. As a social media coordinator I obviously need to be connected to the internet pretty much 24/7, but I also need to be organized because I post for both the marketing department (the events) and editorial department (the online and in-print magazine), so here's what I use every day.

Computer -- I can't do my job without this fine piece of equipment. I have a PC at home, but I've been enjoying using a Mac at work, and I have to say I definitely like it.

iPad -- This is my personal iPad, but I use it everyday at work. I also use it at work events for live-tweeting and using Instagram.

Sticky Notes -- I've discovered that sticky notes help me keep things straight. I use sticky notes to right down my to-do lists that ways it's right there near my keyboard.

Notepad -- For long-term to-do lists I keep these on a notepad. It's also where I keep random information that I need to keep on hand.

Pocket Calendar -- There are lots of events and I have to go to all of them, so it helps to write them all down on this small calendar that way I know when I'm busy or not.

Mug -- I drink a lot of water at work. What is it about staring at a screen that makes me so dehydrated? I try to drink as much water as possible during the day because I forget when I get home.

Zipper Pouch -- Obviously for corralling my lip balms, lipsticks, and pens.

Extra: My Camera -- I may have bought my camera for personal use (and for this here blog of course), but I use it for work events as well.

P.S. -- What's in my work bag!

What are your work essentials?

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Books & Looks: Kayly

Say hello to Kayly!

Book: Saga series by Brian K. Vaughn and Fiona Staples

I couldn't pick a favorite book if my life depended on it, but Saga is one of my favorite new series. I was immediately drawn in by the art. I love the illustration style, which I find to be a great blend of realism and cel shading. The expressions on the characters are my favorite part - just bursting with life. Often times I find myself skimming over the art and just reading the story, but that was not the case with Saga! I took the time to soak in every page. And the story holds up to the art. It can be summed up as an epic adventure of a family trying to survive, but there is so much more. Every character has their own story, and I love learning more bits and pieces with each volume! 

Look: My look tends to be really simple. I live in jeans and tees, and tend to favor darker colors. In the fall, I rock a lot of long sleeves and sweaters in the hopes of maintaining some form of warmth (though usually  I still have to pile a sweatshirt on top!). Lucky for me, fall brings out one of my favorite parts of the fashion world - boots! This particular pair is my favorite. I originally bought them because they were too good a deal to pass up, but after wearing them a few times I loved them even more. Despite being heels, they are actually really comfortable and easy to walk in! I love being able to throw them on for a day's errands without feeling like my feet are going to fall off afterward. 



Thank you, Kayly!
Have you read the Saga series?

Want to be a part of Book & Looks? Pick your favorite book and piece of clothing and take some pictures, then email me at sara.strauss8922@yahoo.com with the subject "Books & Looks". In the email, include: four to five pictures (preferably horizontal), a paragraph or two about why it's your favorite book and why it's your favorite piece of clothing, and three social media links. 

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Outfit: A Patterned Love Affair

I won $50 to Kiki La Rue, picked this dress, got it in the mail, and have pretty much not wanted to take it off since. I've worn it to work and to two work events so far. At first I was hesitant to get it because I usually stay away from busy patterns, but I think it works well on my small frame because the patterned stripes are thin. And now I love this dress: it's stretchy (I don't even have to use the zipper in the back to get into it), it's a fit and flare style, it has pockets, and I've come to really love the interesting pattern. 

This just goes to show that sometimes branching out a little means that you can extend your comfort zone. 
Jacket: Topshop | Dress: Kiki La Rue (via giveaway) | Belt: thrifted
Boots: DSW | Glasses: Warby Parker

Have you tried something new recently?

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Sponsor Spotlight: Jess of Bookworms in Dresses

Hello there! I'm Jess and I've been a bookworm since third grade! I've read a lot off books throughout my years and I've dabbled in creative writing as well. I even won a writing contest back in second grade! Like many bookworms before me, I've thought about how awesome it would be to write a best seller like the ones I'm always reading! So here I'm going to share the three books I wish that I'd written and the three books that I wish hadn't been written.
Top Three First: I wish that I would have written The Likeness by Tana French. I love murder mysteries and it's something that isn't my forte at all when it actually comes to creative writing. I'm terrible a plot twists that you can't see coming. I'm terrible at writing mystery in general, so I wish I had that particular skill set! Plus, The Likeness was just so amazingly well written as well with great characters. I look up to anyone who can spin a tale like that! 

Second, I'd have to say House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski. Clearly I wish I could have written my favorite book! I mean, to be able to write a book that so many people claim as a favorite and re-read would be completely amazing! Not to mention, being able to write something that is so ground-breaking and consuming would be a dream come true! House of Leaves lingers for quite a while after you read it, to the point that you want to measure your walls to make sure everything lines up okay. It's a really deep and freaky book! 

Third, would be Cat Sense by John Bradshaw. I wish that I would have studied cats and become a true cat expert, instead of a self proclaimed cat whisperer. I seem to have a lot of dreams here, but it would be a dream come true to have a bunch of cats and be able to help out shelter cats as well! I want to save all the kitties! So yes, I wish I could write a book all about cats and educate people all about them in hardcover!
Bottom Three Time: The books that I wish hadn't been written. Now remember, this is all my opinion, so you don't have to agree with me! I rarely encounter books I don't like, but that's also because I don't stray too far out of my comfort zone. I'm sure if I grabbed books all willy nilly off shelves at bookstores I'd probably read a lot more books that I didn't like. Anyways, on with the show! First, I have to start with 50 Shades of Grey by E.L James. Not only was this Twilight fan fiction first, but it isn't written all that well either. A lot of the internal monologue was cringe-worthy and it painted a TERRIBLE picture of what BDSM culture is really like. I mean....he literally ignored the safe words for just one thing. Not to mention the cliched ending that didn't make any sense at all, it was just a hodge podge of terrible plot that made became a bestseller. Although, it's really funny to read it using Edward and Bella's names. 

Second, I'm picking When We Were Friends by Elizabeth Joy Arnold. ARGH! I was SO MAD at the end of this book! Like enraged, irritated, and disgruntled! I had some higher hopes for the ending, like some revenge twist, or something but it just let me down so hard! I wanted to throw it on the ground and scream at it! I actually ranted out loud to my parents about it once I finished it. I mean, no normal person would have reacted to that situation in the way the lead character had!! 

Third, the geek in me is coming out and I'm saying Gantz, a manga, by Hiroya Oku. First let me say that yes, I read this entire thing. It's huge! 383 chapters, which is 37 volumes. It started out amazing, such a compelling story full of action and some terrifying creatures. It was mind bending and so confusing, nothing made sense but that just made you want to read it even more! But then.....ALIENS! Spoiler: THE ENTIRE TIME, EVERYTHING WAS ALIENS! IT WAS ALL ALIENS! I WAS SO ENRAGED! IT FELT LIKE A COP-OUT!!! Not to mention, they killed off all the awesome love interests and brought in this terrible one. I just wanted to cry at the end. 

Well. Those are my picks. What books would you have liked to have written? Or do you have a book that you wish didn't exist/that you would have never picked up?

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