My heart is so sad for Oklahoma.  The images of the complete destruction, people wandering through the streets, parents waiting and hoping to be reunited with their babies... I just cannot even begin to imagine what they're feeling right now.  

Growing up in Texas, right in the middle of Tornado Alley, my entire childhood was spent in absolute fear of having to experience one.  We practiced drills all through school (duck and cover in the hallway), the tornado sirens were tested at the fire station down the street from my house every Saturday morning at 10am (the sound of that siren gives me chills to this day), and there were many nights spent in the bathtub with my Mama, Daddy, little brother and our pets with a mattress pulled over us during tornado warnings.  I would be lying if I said the lessened threat of tornadoes was a factor that pushed me towards Boston.

The closest that I've ever come to actually being IN a tornado was in the fifth grade.  I was in Mrs. Pemberton's portable right outside of our elementary school, and the day was bright and sunny.  The school secretary came in during class and went straight to Mrs. Pemberton, whispered something, and left.  Mrs. P. turned to the class and calmly told everyone that we needed to go into the main building, and to please line up.  Nobody had any idea what was going on, and in retrospect, I think that she handled the situation perfectly.  We joined the other fourth and fifth grade classes in the main school hallway and lined up against the brick walls.  Several teachers brought out games, we were allowed to read, talk with our friends... it was very calm.  

After maybe an hour had passed, the signal came over the intercom for a tornado drill.  The teachers told everyone to get into the duck and cover position as we had practiced, that we were okay, but that there was bad weather coming our way and we needed to be safe, just in case.  I vividly remember looking out of the windows on the door and noticing that the bright, sunny weather was gone and the light outside was green.  It was the most eerie thing that I have ever in my life seen, and I know that I'll never forget that.  Terrible storms did indeed come through, but we were so lucky to only have strong winds, rain and hail.  We had to wait until our parents came to pick us up and sign us out, and that was that.  

Once we were home, my parents told me and my brother that a tornado had touched down south of our town, in Jarrell, Texas.  It was an F5, 3/4 of a mile wide, and it ripped through the town.  Driving through weeks afterwards, you could still see the path of the tornado.  

We were so lucky not to be directly affected then, but I'll never forget how big of an impact it had on our little area of Central Texas.  Everyone came together to help those who had lost everything, through donations, blood drives, manual labor help with clearing debris and then rebuilding when it came time to do so.  I'm praying today that people everywhere can come together to show the same kind of support for the people and families who have lost everything.  

spring fashion lovelies

Alleluia, spring has FINALLY arrived in Boston!  It's only, you know, May 16th and we're officially experiencing our first sunny, 80 degree day.  'Tis glorious!!  

As the cooler days dragged on through March, and April... and early May, I started to stock up on all of the fun spring fashions that I would be able to wear when it was finally appropriate to show my (blindingly pale) legs without needing tights and a heavy coat.

1. Factory pleated colorblock skirt

I'm seriously loving this skirt from J. Crew Factory.  I managed to catch it on a day when it was already marked down for final sale, plus I used a coupon code for an additional 40% off, and I ordered enough to qualify for free shipping-- cha-ching!

J. Crew continued to work its online shoppers spell and convinced me that I NEEDED a pair of jeans in a particularly bright color, which is ironic considering that the part of my body I'd like to draw the LEAST amount of attention to is the one clothed in these flaming colors...)

Loft and I often have a love/hate relationship:  I basically either want to spend an entire paycheck there, or I can't find a single thing to love.  When I stopped in a month or so ago during one of their big "Spring is here! Let's have a sale!" days, I couldn't help but fall head over heels for these sweaters (Teal Blast and Starburst Coral).  

They're the perfect lightweight cotton that I can for sure wear through summer (already picturing with white shorts and white skinnies) and are available in several other summery colors.  One of my big pet peeves when shopping is having to buy clothes strictly for work that aren't wearable on the weekends.  Considering I can pair these with so many bottom options and dress them up with a fun necklace or scarf, they've been in constant rotation.

These babies were a steal of a lifetime!  J. Crew Factory ran them at $19.50 PLUS an additional 30% off coupon code so seriously-- it would have been irresponsible of me to NOT purchase them, right?  Also, the inseam is 5 inches long.  Considering I'm in my late 20s (mercy me), have a tan that is comparable to Casper's coloring, and am just now working on getting my legs back into running shape, I think that this longer inseam will be most forgiving.  Right?  Riiight...

Okay, so it hasn't been QUITE warm enough to wear this cuteness, but I seriously cannot wait.  It's intended for a swimsuit cover-up, which is what I bought it to wear as, but several people commented in the reviews that it's short enough to wear with shorts as a tunic-like top as well-- genius!  The colors are so bright and cheerful, I just couldn't help myself.  I ordered it in medium/large and it fits perfectly, and isn't sheer like most cover-ups can be.

I am legitimately living in this dress.  It's been to work, to a BBQ, to brunch... Again, it's one of my required versatile pieces that can be dressed up or down for just about anything.  The color is great, and I've received tons of compliments on it-- people are shocked when I tell them Old Navy!  It's marked down on the website now, and ON is always running some type of sale-- stock up!  There is no doubt in my mind that I'll add another color to my rotation before too long.

Again with the dress-- get on with your stylish self, Old Navy!  I've worn this a handful of times as well, with a cardi to work and always with a belt, or else my waist looks like an Alice in Wonderland illusion with the wavy stripes.

I'm still on the hunt for a great white eyelet top for the summer, so nothing too terribly heavy or tight-- I'm all about the flowy, tunic-y top for a hot summer day.  Also a requirement: must not break the bank.  I've found a hundred and one white eyelet options for my 3 month old niece but nada for myself.  Hm, is that a sign that white eyelet no longer works for adults?  The things I ponder...

After an appointment with my Sports Medicine MD last week, I was also informed that my ol' faithful flip flops aren't going to cut it for appropriate support during my commute to/from work each day, so I think I'm finally going to bite the bullet and invest in a pair of Sperry's.  I really need the support and on rainy days in my flip flops I live in constant fear of face-planting on a slippery sidewalk.  A boat shoe should take care of that chance, right?  Plus they can definitely be matched with skirts and dresses better than a sneaker can.  A few styles I'm loving (any input is appreciated!):

color: sand
color: linen oat

Happy Thursday, lovelies!