What I'm Reading

Mar 26, 2015

Vol. thirty-six
For more of my favorite articles, click here.

On faking it and sisterly love (via Wit & Delight)
The truth is "faking it" doesn't stop once you reach big adult benchmarks. Faking it is part of evolving. Faking it gives us the balls we need to get to the next stage in our careers. Faking it can be a vacation from reality, and faking it can get you into deep, deep water. At some point, we have to know when faking it counts as fair play, and when it can derail your life.

Forget reducing stress - Just add more joy (via Yes and Yes)
Subtracting the stressful things from our lives — the long commute, the ridiculous sister-in-law, the snarky co-worker, the loud neighbor — isn't always possible. Spending a lot of time and energy thinking about those things might just make us feel powerless and even more stressed. But what if we just add more joy to our daily lives. What if we make an active choice to do more of the things that fill us up and make us really, truly happy? When we add more joy to our lives, there's simply less room for stress. We all have limited space in our brains and hearts and it's hard to nurse a grudge at our colleagues when we're busy laughing into our pho with a friend during a workday lunch.

5 ways to develop confidence in the workplace (via The Everygirl)
One of the most frustrating parts about being a less confident person is watching as others seem to glide through life. They speak up in meetings. They say yes to every challenge. They never seem rattled. They exude confidence. Meanwhile, you're sure people are just a day away from discovering that you're a fraud. But if you asked most people point-blank how confident they were, you'd be surprised how many feel the same way you do. Even the remarkable Maya Angelou and talented Emma Watson have admitted to this unsettling feeling, known as the Imposter Syndrome. Don't fall for it. You deserve to be exactly where you are, and you will continue to achieve good things. We are all human, and we are all just doing the best we know how.

Kicking Off Spring The Right Way

Mar 25, 2015

We kicked off spring in the best possible way this past weekend with lots of laughs and good times in Atlanta. After bemoaning the fact that adults don't get a spring break anymore (what's the deal with that?), we decided to create our own spring break. A roadtrip to Atlanta + a long weekend with friends = a pretty great spring break in my book. The weather couldn't have been more beautiful if it tried and it felt even better knowing that some parts of Virginia were getting snow that day. Ugh. 

We spent some time exploring all the nooks and crannies that make Atlanta such a cool city. We founds some really cool spots, thanks mostly to the awesome recommendations that our friend gave us. Here's a quick run-down of some of the places we went:

Architectural Accents - This architectural salvage yard was brimming with old doors, mantels, bathtubs, and chandeliers but my favorite thing was the enormous selection of vintage doorknobs. In my next home, I'm determined to have all glass doorknobs.

Labels Resale - We went searching for the consignment shop Labels on the recommendation of our friend and were surprised to find not one, but three little houses in Buckhead with a Labels sign. There's one house for shoes, one for tops & bottoms, and one for formal wear. I snagged a discounted Zara blouse just in time for short-sleeve weather. 

Shake Shack - We kicked off the weekend with burgers, fries, and milkshakes in the fanciest Shake Shack I've ever seen. Atlanta doesn't play around with their burgers.

West Elm - What would a weekend be without West Elm? I spent a good 10 minutes drooling over this mid-century media cabinet and then another 10 crying over the price tag. Eesh!

Antico Pizza - I've heard so much about this popular pizza joint and finally got to try it out on Friday night. We arrived early before the dinner rush so there wasn't quite as much dough flying, but it was still a really cool experience. Not to mention the pizza was fantastic. Mark fell in love with the fresh garlic and olive oil, so we'll definitely be going back.

Buffalo Exchange - By the time we got to Buffalo Exchange, I was trying to be good and save my pennies, but this store made it very hard. Their prices were really good ($6 scarves! $15 Sperry's!) Highly recommend.

Kudzu Antiques - No trip to Atlanta is complete without a walk through this gorgeous antique mall. I gazed lovingly at the vintage salt & pepper shakers but walked out with two new Statler Brothers records instead.

I'll take one of those, thanks. 

Foot selfies because IT'S SPRING BREAK.

The things you find in downtown Atlanta...

Oh, West Elm, you're killing me. And by "me", I mean my wallet.

 Will walk for pizza.

 Just look at that beauty, will ya?

Let's do it again, mmkay.

10 happy things worth mentioning

Mar 24, 2015

1. Those cheap fudge striped cookies from the grocery store. For some reason, they remind me of summer. Plus, they taste good!

2. A mid-week patio dinner with friends to celebrate the warm weather. We tried En Su Boca for the first time and it was delicious! I don't know why it has taken me so long to jump on the fish tacos wagon, but I am firmly on board. We'll definitely be going back.

3. Wearing flats every day this week. I think it may finally be safe to pack my boots away.

4. Finding a new show to binge watch. My sister told me about Magic City, so I watched the pilot earlier this week and have been hooked ever since. I also really want to take a trip to Miami now.

5. String lights, always. We made a quick trip to Sugar Shack for donuts last week and their string lights were on point.

6. Working with the windows open. While some people are probably distracted by outdoor noises while working, I think it is the perfect soundtrack. Today there was a lawnmower! Can you say summer?

7. Taking a long weekend to bum around Atlanta with friends. If I could just shorten the distance between Richmond and Atlanta, life would be grand.

8. When you put a book on hold at the library and it's available the next day! I'm excited to pick up Cheryl Strayed's Tiny Beautiful Things  this afternoon. Sadly, that's not the case with this book. I'm number 156 in that queue.

9. Finding a new crossbody bag on a whim — on sale, no less!

10. Having long conversations with my husband (who claims to not like The Voice) about who we think will win this season. I think I've successfully got him hooked on a show I like. Score one for me!

Life Lately

Mar 18, 2015

Lately, we've been having the best of both worlds, weather-wise. This past weekend, it was rainy and gray outside -- perfect for sleeping in, reading books, and listening to Kris Kristofferson on the record player. The very next day, the sun came out and sent the temps soaring and I was rewarded with the smallest sunburn known to man. It was perfect.

Lately, I've been following along with the #21dayphotoproject on Instagram and over-gramming like a mad woman. I am the worst at sticking to these photo challenge type of things, so the fact that I've made it through the first week is very impressive.

Lately, I've been reading Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald in preparation for our book club discussion on the blog next week and I have so many thoughts and opinions on this one! I've started a note in my phone to jot down thoughts as I'm reading and I debate the characters' actions over and over in my mind while I'm in the shower. It's been awhile since I've been this involved in a book, so I'm excited to hear everyone's thoughts on it next week!

What I'm Reading

Mar 16, 2015

Vol. thirty-six
Find more of my favorite articles here.

What you learn in your 40s (via The New York Times)
There are no grown-ups. We suspect this when we are younger, but can confirm it only once we are the ones writing books and attending parent-teacher conferences. Everyone is winging it, some just do it more confidently. There are no soul mates. Not in the traditional sense, at least. In my 20s someone told me that each person has not one but 30 soul mates walking the earth. In fact, "soul mate" isn't a pre-existing condition. It's an earned title. They're made over time.

The truth about "fake it 'til you make it" (via Entrepreneur)
If nothing else, life is mostly about taking chances. It's about stepping into the unknown. None of us have any real control over the outcome. But if you focus on what you're good at -- what you really love to do -- and work hard to develop a marketable expertise, you won't have to fake anything to make it. You simply will.

How to be successful (via The Fresh Exchange)
The funny thing about rethinking success is that when we begin to focus on success in this new way and chase these things, many times we can find the other "successes" emerge. I can promise you there are many people out there that felt more fulfilled and successful not by the things we know them for, but by the things that brought them to why we know them. So how do you be successful? You redefine success, not because you are failing at the things the world has defined for you, but because sometimes those things that the world has defined for you aren't really your own marks of success.
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