Monday, June 30, 2014

Senior Festivities

Hey guys-- wanted to say that I'm absolutely thrilled with the response that I got from yesterday's post! I always get nervous posting personal information that makes me feel vulnerable, but then I feel so rewarded when I hear from sweet people like you that read this blog. I was blown away by the messages I got on here, Twitter, and Tumblr that proved I'm not the only one that feels like that. Funny how we all pretty much have the same opinions on body image, but continue to feel judged by each other. Just some food for thought. *Ba duhh tshh*

ANYWAAAAY, considering that I never posted about end of the year life, I'm posting about it now. So enjoy.

Seniors do senior-y things, right? My senior class wins the awards for best senior pranks and fun. The last week of school was lots of fun, starting with a beach party in the parking lot-

And consequentially, the sand in my parking spot.

But I did win a senior superlative! This made me so incredibly happy, ya don't even know. My kids someday will ask me about whether or not I won a senior superlative, and I'll be able to dig up Google my blog and say, "Look what Mama did throughout high school! Aren't you proud?" And they'll roll their eyes and turn to whatever's cool and not some blog that their mom had about monograms.

We went to dinner with my Spanish teacher. Holy moly, this was so fun to finally hear what she really thought of us. 

 And we had a wedding. YEAH, A WEDDING. All the senior boys put together a wedding between two guys, and it was absolutely hilarious.

Remember in The Office finale when Michael shows up, and with only a few lines in the whole episode, says, "I feel like all my kids grew up... And then they married each other! Its every parents dream!"? Those were my feelings during this wedding.

Congrats to the happy couple!

I even got a few pictures with the lucky bride and groom!!! Framing these fo sho.

THIS IS THE FULL WEDDING! Please watch it. You won't regret it. And special thanks to Austin Gardner for putting it together!

And.... we took a lot of pictures at the end of the year...

My sweet Sloaney Baloney graduated from 5th grade! Hate to go all 'mom' on you, but I really do remember the day he was born (I was literally in the delivery room... I don't know why my mom thought it was okay for a 7 year old to be in the delivery room during the birth of my brother, but I guess I was just a very mature 7 year old) and he's my little baby. I mean, sometimes to the point where people get confused in public if he really is my son (I pass for way too old), and I can't believe he's going to middle school!

The last day of school is reserved for way too many selfies.

Watching my best friend graduate!

Yes, lots of outdated photos, but I couldn't post them all on Insta, am I right?


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Hip Bones

My body challenges have been something I've always dealt with. I'll go ahead and be upfront with it now, because, hey, this is my blog and I can say what I want. But I had a slight eating disorder my freshman year and it was one of the hardest parts of my life (and if we're being honest, only about five people knew this up until this point). I needed control and it was something that shaped who I am. Regardless, a lot has happened since I eventually got over those really bad eating and workout habits.

I learned to love my body for what it does and love everything about it. I've written about body acceptance before, but I really think this year was the first time I learned to not care. Maybe this was bad because it caused me to neglect working out some, but I wasn't worrying about every calorie and looking at my thighs hating myself. God made me 5'11" and gave me some long legs and big hips. I can't change what I was born with, and I sure as heck am not going to try to cover it all up with every worry of how people will look at me. I really didn't care if people saw me eating at a party or the amount I was eating-- I shouldn't have to make excuses for being hungry. I'm not saying that you should abuse your body or not consider it a temple, because the things you put into it are important. But what I am saying is that you shouldn't worry how people view your body. You shouldn't worry about the tags in your clothes because as cheesy as this sounds, if you feel good in what you're wearing, it actually doesn't matter. So long are the days of every girl trying to be a size 2 (ummm, I'm not sure if I’ve ever fit into any size 2 in my life), because if it ain't flattering on you, go up or down a size. It’s about how you look and feel.

The day I learned to love my body and all that it was capable of was the best day. I don't know when it happened or if it was gradual, but that acceptance and general attitude of not caring if I was at the heavier end of a healthy 10 pound range is the best.

And then I went through a hard time and lost my appetite for a few days. I knew it wasn't good for me to not have eaten anything but a couple of crackers, but I knew it would eventually return. I didn't want to eat anything, which almost made me angry because I could feel hungry. I knew it wasn't like me to feel like this. Inevitably, though, I lost weight and looked thinner. 

I was so caught up in what I was dealing with that yes, I noticed I was thin, but it didn't bother me because I knew I was going to gain the couple of pounds back at some point. Then I went to an event, wearing a more fitted dress that fit a little bit better than it had before. Two of my friends told me that I looked "hot and like a goddess" and I laughed and thanked them, though I'm pretty sure they only told me this because they knew what I was going through. Then at the end, another friend, one who I've shared weight concerns with, told me I looked "so skinny" .....and I thanked her. Isn't that every girl's dream? To be told they look skinny? Doesn't every girl consider a weight loss as a good thing, even if it wasn't necessary? Don't we all equivocate "skinny" with "beautiful"? 

I thanked her because it seemed like it was the only thing I knew to say right then, but she didn't know how hurt and upset I was feeling on the inside at the time because of something completely unrelated. It wasn't her comment that bothered me, but the fact that she thought I was comforted by the fact that I was skinny. She didn't know that my skinniness was only due to a really sad point where I physically could not eat anything. Yet I thanked her, because thin is supposed to mean pretty. I considered it the same sort of compliment as when my two friends told me I looked good, when really, it shouldn't be the same thing at all. Skinny is a fact, beautiful is a compliment.

And when I mowed the lawn the next night, I could feel my hip bones hitting against the lawn mower. I know it's an odd reflection, but I'm a big girl. I don't normally feel my hip bones, so pushing that lawn mower, still in the dumps, it was a low point. Hip bones don't mean anything, no matter what some Tumblr or Twitter fitspo account tells you. My hip bones resembled the dolefulness I was feeling at the time and not anything positive. While some yearn for those extruding hip bones, I could only feel sad about them.

Or I think about spring break, when I got so sunburned that I was throwing up every meal and couldn't eat anything substantial. I lost a lot of weight in a short period of time because of an illness, and boy, I think everyone knew how badly I wanted to eat, but I couldn't. It wasn't glamorous or romantic to only eat a little bit, it was sad (and I got cranky and hungry). Some of my friends, not on the trip with me, kept saying how they wished they had sun poisoning so they could be that thin. And I cringed because I could and would never wish that kind of horrible feeling upon anyone. Again, the emphasis on skinny with the reason behind feeling like a pile of poop. How funny that when I was the sickest I'd ever felt, that I was the thinnest I'd ever been, and that was supposed to make me feel better? It only goes to show that that weight isn't my natural weight.

I have brown hair. I have green eyes. I'm 5'11". And maybe I'm thin. Those are physical qualities. If you were to tell me that I had brown hair, I wouldn't say thank you, because it's not a compliment, so why should we say thank you if someone tells you you're thin?

We women have gotten accustomed to a norm that if you're thin, you're beautiful, and automatically happy. "If only I were thin and pretty would I be happy" is a constant phrase we throw around and agree with. It's easy to look at thin women and think about how much easier their life must be....but because they're thin? 

It sickens me to think this, and I only share this because I've thought it before, too. It was legitimately the reason I had an eating disorder, and I'm just so thankful that I'm long past that and past the appetite loss because I can see how weird of a feeling that was. The fact that we automatically translate "skinny" to "pretty" only encourages the feelings that cause eating disorders and messed up mindsets. 

I want to emphasize that I know all women are of all shapes and sizes. I know that some are naturally thin and some aren't, but every woman is beautiful. I don't want this to come across as if I'm bashing thin women, because I know that some people’s hip bones are naturally like that and there are plenty of beautiful women that are thin. Thin and curvy and bigger and smaller are all beautiful. All we need to do is make sure that we’re not confusing the line between compliments of “you’re so thin” and “you’re so pretty”. Of course we need to tell each other we’re pretty now and then, but when we start to differentiate a simple quality of someone’s body from beauty, that’s where we're making progress.

And hey, I think you’re all pretty hot and all look like goddesses.

What are your thoughts? I'd love to hear!


Saturday, June 28, 2014

retail therapy

I think the insanity is over. Or rather, just about over. I want to thank all of y'all for your sweet words about the loss of my grandfather, I was overwhelmed with love from my blog friends and real friends and family and family's friends and overall, just a lot of love. The past two weeks have been crazy because all of it happened so quickly and then the week after his passing, it was craziness trying to get the funeral organized. I am so blessed for such wonderful people in my life and that were in the life of my sweet Daddy Dee. He changed so many lives and you either knew him as the camera man or the one that was always helping people. Through countless stories of him helping someone in need and always putting others first, I am inspired to live life like he did, and to turn my passions into acts of love like he did with photography. Returning to a new normal after losing someone so close to you is difficult, but I pray and know that God will help all of us get there. 

And maybe retail therapy has been my therapy? 

I bought this necklace from the account I always talk about, @memoirofapreppymom on Instagram! She is so lovely and has such incredible pieces!

PS: Here's the lipstick from that photo. Funny, I actually bought that right before prom and couldn't decide on the color, but we were going to a winery for prom dinner, so this seemed like the obvious choice. And I love it!

Okay, I really caved and bought this hat. Ummmmm, do you see the UR logo?! I was looking for a good Richmond cap, and when I found this one from Southern Tide, I was in love. I also convinced my brother to buy a hat...

Also, now that I'm going to be in town for the fourth of July and the concert, I'm going to Red, White, & Boom, a huge country concert and I'm soo excited. Like guys, I'm talking about Lee Brice, Jerrod Niemann, Eric Paslay, Lucy Hale (?? I know, but whatevs, she's still cool), Jamie Lynn Spears (can I ask her to bring back Zoey 101?), SUNDY BEST, and plenty of others. Aaaaand, there are two acts they haven't released the names of yet! Now, all I have to do is figure out what to wear.... Any advice?


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Broken Hallelujah

It all kind of seems surreal and hard to comprehend, but I lost my sweet grandfather, my Daddy Dee late Saturday night. He changed my life in so many ways that I can't even thoroughly explain, but it's times like these when even though it's hard to thank God for taking him away from me, I praise God that he lived a life chasing Christ and changed so many people's lives for the better. If you met my grandfather, you know that he had the most kind heart and it was all because of Christ in his life. I praise God knowing of His promise of eternal life and that Daddy Dee's rejoicing with the Lord right now, and I praise God knowing all the people that have been there for my family. This is just a short post for now, but I just can't imagine anyone going through life without a relationship with Christ during something like this.

John 14:1-4 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.”

And a song that's been speaking to me the past few weeks.


Saturday, June 21, 2014

Modern Twist on Classic Lilly

Happy Wear Your Lilly Day!! Or rather, known to the rest of the (boring) world, happy summer solstice, I guess. Wearing Lilly is a more fun way to do that, in my opinion. So I'm sharing one of my favorite Lilly pieces today! 

And of course I'm wearing my Lilly watch on Wear Your Lilly day. How could you not?

I normally wear a summery skirt with a plain white tee (no, there's no Delilah) and was kind of tired of that. I wore this skirt on the first day of school (aww, high school) like that and loved it, but wanted to switch it up.

said first day of school

So, of course, I stole my sister's chambray shirt and wore it with that, tying it at the waist. Now here's the good and the bad of that: this skirt is too big in the waist and is really loose, so it was nice to have the shirt tied as if it were holding it up, when really, the skirt was being held with a big binder clip. So there's your friendly tip of the day-- no belt loops? Tie your shirt over it! 

How do you change up what you like to wear?


Friday, June 20, 2014

Patchwork Makes the Dream Work

I could freak out at how much I love this skirt. It's a patchwork Vineyard Vines and it just makes me so doggone happy. And when you're a senior and doing random things in the middle of the school day with your friends because you don't have anything to do, you have to get a couple of shots.

Shirt: Banana Republic | Skirt: Vineyard Vines | Shoes: Sperry | Watch: Anne Klein

And what would be cute with that skirt? A monogrammed shirt:


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

White + Navy + BFF

Kirby is my best friend that'll text me some night and say "I have too much gossip to tell you. Can we go eat lunch tomorrow?" This has been our relationship for years (#NotGoingToTheSameSchoolProbz) and I've loved all of it.

And then, of course, we'll show up at said place and be wearing some sort of similar outfit, but hey, this is what friends telepathically do, right?

We live by the motto #NavyorNothing (thank you, Mackenzie Horan), though I have to admit she's more of a navy lover than me. Regardless, we were both rocking the white and navy look on a rainy Lexington day. And of course, my sweet Kirbs always does the best Monogram Meredith promo for me, in the navy gingham and white (and yellow)-- check out my Etsy shop listing with her in it!

She's looking so sweet in a J. Crew top, Francesa's skirt, and hot pink Hunters.

And I was wearing an old top from American Eagle, Target pants, and sandals (that I don't even remember buying).

Funny story about the pants: I always get asked where I bought them, but really, I snagged them from Target clearance for FIVE BUCKS in late October. "They probably won't ever be in style..." Target probably falsely thought. SUCKAS, I bought these cheap thinking I'd try them out come spring and I regret not buying four more pairs. 

So, sorry about your luck and that I have no idea where to buy pants like these now.

And if this outfit wasn't enough, we ended up matching once again in navy and white on a completely different day....