Friday, November 30, 2012

Nooks and Crannies

I would like to introduce you all to my lovely yet extremely awkward nook space. My neighbor tells me that everyone else has shelves in theirs, but not me. I have this adorable little nook.

Right now the nook houses my rocking chair and pseudo-end table/storage unit/bucket of summer clothes that I need to find new homes for. Plus my Christmas Tree, Albert. As happy as Albert is with his situation, I really think I need to spiff it up. I did a lot of soul searching and Pinteresting and decided that I wanted the nook to be...

// 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 //

...and adorable nook office! Clean and simple. I love the one drawer writer's desk with a chair and a file cabinet for extra storage (for my endless amounts of notebooks) and the two or three wall shelves for my books and tchotchkes. Just a cozy little place to work and be inspired. Seems like the perfect place to set my laptop up and type or go to first thing in the morning and write. I'm glad I didn't just get boring old shelves in my nook!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Work It Out

Sometimes when you have a nerdy question, worry or insecurity, I think it helps to put it out there. Chances are you're not the only nerd that feels this way and other nerds would enjoy commiserating with your inherent  nerdiness. Nerd.

I was in the midst of a work-out/room cleaning know, 50 crunches and then you hang up laundry. 20 lunges and then you clean your sink. It's the ultimate form of procrastination. I'm procrastinating cleaning by working out and procrastinating working out by cleaning which results in actual results. God I'm good. The procrastination took a turn for the awesome when a spine roll/dresser reorganization turned in to a dance party. Thankfully I have but one mirror in my bedroom, and as I'm going in to a full on rage I catch sight of myself and realize that I have no idea what to do with my arms. It was all hips and tush and my arms were like spaghetti noodles. So my nerdy question is: what do you do with your arms while dancing?

The obvious first choice is to Google "what do you do with your arms while dancing?" and low and behold Seventeen has a forum discussion for it. Duh. I started there and worked my way around the internet, and here are my best solutions:

// Run your hands through your hair / Touch other parts of your body: hands on the hips, on the waist, head shoulders knees and toes? / Let your arms move with your hips / Vogue it out / YouTube your favorite songs and try out a few things / Should a friend be present, hold hands with them; this is genius really, let them figure out what to do with your arms / Don't think about it at all. Chances are no one is noticing that your arms are out of sync, and you're just trying to have a good time anyway //

I hope you all feel less like a nerd, I know I sure do(n't), but we'll dance anyway.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Old Dress New Tricks

In high school I remember stealing moments in between school and the time Dad would come home to watch re-runs of Sex and the City and ogling over, what else? The styling. The clothes were great, but how everything was put together in a quirky fashion forward way made my seventeen year old self aspire to high fashion style on a writer's budget. The one thing that got under my skin is how they would wear these beautiful ensembles and then never again! Why pour all the funds in to something that gets a five minute debut and then disappears in to the bowels of Carry Bradshaw's tiny closet...or her stove turned sweater rack.

Please excuse that bottom right pose. I don't know what I was doing but my hair looks great!

But after moving in to my studio I began to unpack dress after dress that I wore once and hung back in my closet. I realized that it's difficult to wear the same dress twice, especially since facebook culture reminds everyone we're friends with that we've worn it already. Plus it's nice to show up in something fresh for a special occasion. But in keeping with my 24 Before 25 list I want to wear everything once. So this holiday season I'm going to try (try I said!) not to buy a new dress.

I don't want to make any promises here, some of this season's offerings are just too tempting. But I have some strategies to keep my paws off a new dress that will just end up sitting in my closet:

// 1. Update with a cute pair of tights / 2. Keep it fresh by trying a new beauty product / 
/ 3. Accessorize with new or different jewelry / 4. Step out in a festive pair of heels / 5. Top it off with a chic menswear inspired tux jacket / 6. Pick out a new hairstyle to give the seasoned dress some oomph! //

Let's see how long I last. I'll definitely post re-styles once I've worn them!

Sunday, November 25, 2012


This morning I woke up, ate breakfast, and promptly fell back asleep. Got up, took a shower, fell back asleep (not in the shower thankfully). The holiday weekend took a lot out of me it seems. Either that or I need to stop reading scary books before I go to sleep.

I had an energy spurt in the middle of the day which resulted in a Target run and an apartment re-organization. Again. The only likely conclusion to this day is Pandora radio's Queen station and a box glass of wine.

I hope everyone's Sunday was just as enthralling!


Friday, November 23, 2012

T-Day Turban

Thanksgiving was themed "turbans and caftans" this year. Despite my extreme admiration for Golden Girls I didn't have a caftan laying around the house, so one scarf and two seconds made a nice head wrap that did a decent job of looking turban-esque and keeping my hair out of my eyes. I actually really enjoyed wearing it, in a 1940s Hollywood starlet kind of way, but with a little more kitsch.

Would you try wearing a turban? Next step: one of these bad boys:

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanks and Thanks

Happy Turkey Day All! This is the first Thanksgiving ever that I didn't go back to Columbus for, so I kicked it off right last night with drinks and dancing in Wrigleyville, also known as "Black Wednesday" "Turkey Night" or "Thanksgiving Eve". Thank you clever marketing ploys. Today will be lounging around and making sweet potatoes for dinner tonight, and hopefully finding an open coffee place in the near future. 

I hope everyone has a lovely Thanksgiving full of parade watching/food cooking/family and friends or just sitting in your apartment eating chicken wings. Hey, to each their own. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Whatcha' Making?

Thanksgiving is mere hours away and although I can't run back to Columbus (I work Black Friday, ugh) I'm headed to Roommate's new place for an orphan Thanksgiving. I thought about bringing some sort of sweet potato dish but I'm having second thoughts. I only have tonight and tomorrow morning to make whatever it is I'm making, and I'm being a little indecisive. Tell me what you think sounds good...

/ Sweet Potato Casserole Recipe Here / Green Beans, Recipe Here / 
 /Apple and Onion Stuffing, Photo Via Recipe Here / Ginger Apple Bourbon, Recipe Here /

It's okay if you want to pick "all of the above". What are you cooking up this Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mama I'm Coming Home

Friday night I called my Mom and asked what the possibility of me flying home for 48 hours was. She said they were great, especially for Christmas. Saturday during my lunch break I booked a plane ticket for right after the Sunday matinee of the Christmas show I'm working on, and now I'll be home for Christmas! We'll drive back to Chicago Christmas night so I can be back at work the day after, and then I'll get some quality time with Reid and Mom leading up to New Years. My fears of sitting alone in my apartment Christmas morning and shedding tears in to my oatmeal have all but vanished, and I'm super excited to see my family and get some Tim Horton's. How I miss Tim Horton's...and also my family.

Can't wait to see you C-bus, I'll be home for Christmas!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Reinventing the Polo

Sometimes when I'm at work wearing my baggy water repellent uniform, I imagine cutting it up and re-fashioning it so I could feel like I was wearing something cute, and not just a baggy water repellent polo shirt...of course I think my bosses would notice, but can they write me up for creativity? I don't think so.

Like this one with back buttons

Or this one with a peter pan collar

And this one with a bow tie

Finally this one with a comfy boat neck

Sunday, November 18, 2012


After my computer was fixed I logged on to my bloglovin' que and found almost 200 unread blogs, 200! I would catch up on a few before work, read some while I was eating dinner, and last night I finally got through the majority of them. Now that's dedication. I can't hear a faint voice in the distance saying: "now if only you put that much effort in to you math homework..." Never have, never will.

One of the last blogs I read was the A Cup Of Jo post about Mindy Kaling and asking her mother for advice before she passed. The most important thing she remembered was "You have to be your own best friend. If you always remember that, you will always have someone there with you." It made me think, have a really been a best friend to myself lately? Beating myself up at work for not making sales goals, being down on myself for not working out when I know I should, and even criticizing myself for not writing these blog posts more often. So yesterday, I decided to be a great best friend to myself.

I was easy on myself at work, everyone has off days, y'know? I went grocery shopping and bought myself a glass pan and some brownie mix, then hit up the redbox for some girls-night-in DVD rentals. I did a little work out while I was waiting for the brownies to be made and then I watched Magic Mike and ate said crumbly hot delicious brownies (but no worries, I worked out before I ate them so they cancel each other out.) I cleaned my room because I knew I would love waking up to a tidy space and I scoured Pinterest without shame of my time being "wasted". I spoke kindly to myself about this only being a speed bump in a really long journey, that I won't always be struggling but even when I am, I'll have a best friend to fall back on when I need help.

Have you been a great best friend to yourself lately? I'd highly recommend it, especially if there are brownies involved.

Have a great Sunday!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Gearing Up

Winters in Ohio my needs were simple: a pea coat and a nice pair of boots. But Chicago is a whole different ball game when it comes to winter. I'm not comparing it to the Klondike Mountains, but living right off the lake when the wind whips around and knocks you off balance, you only wish you could cherish the gray slush of Columbus. Winter is right around the corner here, and you can tell by chapped lips, hot chocolate cravings, and the Christmas Wreaths already up on State Street. Sheesh. The only thing that helps me look forward to it all is the thought of adding some nice style-staples to my wardrobe...

I think I have the basics nailed down thanks to some thoughtful Christmas gifts, but this year I'd like to step it up a notch, really give winter a what-for while still looking professional and stylish.

1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Starting with a chic tailored jacket. Not that I dislike my winter coats, but my pea coat has seen better days. (I have had it since I was a junior in high school...yeah, that's devotion.) But something about the belted military style coats reads classic, sexy, and elegant. Besides which, I saw an uber stylish Chicago-lady wearing one paired with riding boots and wavy ombre ends and I was sold. Obviously I think very highly of Chicago winter style.

1 / 2 / 34

Next come some serious boots. I have my lovely red Hunters courtesy of my Valentine, but some other styles have been catching my eye lately. These Sperry boots are nothing short of ruggedly amazing and the traction on those puppies will be great for slippery surfaces (I think it's safe to liken a wet El floor with a boat dock). The kick-ass classics: Dr. Marten's, and of course the ever-outdoorsy chic L.L. Bean Boots. The navy colored bottoms add the right amount of sharpness.

Lastly, top off your foundation with some luxurious looking accessories. I'm a sucker for lady-like gloves. Velvet scarves have been popping up around town lately, and I don't know if its the stylish elderly women I see on a daily basis, but a turban-style hat would add an elegant and edgy touch.

1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Gimme Mo

Back in college our RAs where responsible for organizing a certain number of group activities for residents, and the annual favorite was No Shave November. Being a co-ed dorm, ladies were allowed to participate via leg hair...and I'm positive I participated unwittingly (who has the freaking time in college?)

But now it's morphed from college pass time to a full on charity extravaganza with Movember, and lately it just seems like a good 'stache isn't that hard to find...

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

Monday, November 12, 2012


Look at me go, making promises that I can't keep. Maybe it was a little lofty to think that I could work, close a show, and write blog posts without wireless internet, but at least I'm hopeful. To be honest I'm glad for the weekend I've had. Theatre, friends, and putting the pieces of my apartment together. Once there is a permanent source of internet (lifeblood) installed in my apartment, I will be more diligent about posting...

I hope everyone has a lovely week!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Deck the Halls

The complaints about the holidays coming earlier and earlier keep rolling in, and right off my back. Obviously since I was ready to listen to Christmas music in mid October. But think about it folks, if we start decorating for the holidays early then there's an extra month to enjoy your hard work making your dwelling look festive, three if you're like me and let some x-mas stuff slip by through January.

Here are a few understated ways to inject some holiday cheer in to your home without driving you nuts before December:

Greenery is always a nice touch, especially in winter where you start to become tree-deprived.

Stick to either red or green while decorating, that way the Christmas spirit isn't all up in your face.

Use good old fashioned paper snowflakes! You legitimately can leave these up all winter long.

These metallic starts are festive yet not over the top.

Add some glitter: cheery and stylish.

White lights put some warmth in to your space, I love the glow they create in the evenings.

 1 / 2 / 3 / 4

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Grand Tour

Sine moving in last Monday I haven't had a ton of time in between work and theatre to find a place for everything. Bear with me here, it's not exactly Apartment Therapy Tour-ready!

When you walk in to my apartment this is your first view: my bed. Roommate, or should I say Prior Roommate has since installed my red curtains and helped me hang up my little round mirror. It was a little strange at first sleeping in the entry way. It's kind of like staying in a hotel actually.

 Obviously I have a long way to go, but at least I carved out a sleeping space!

 You walk down a little hallway, on the left hand side is the bathroom which had absolutely no storage outside of a small cabinet over the sink. The baby-duck-yellow tiles seem to be clashing with my deep purple shower curtain, but for now it'll do its job. On the right side of the hall is my walk in closet that I haven't been able to take a picture of is a hot mess. 

The hallway takes you to the breakfast nook where my futon and TV are currently stashed, it's a cozy little nook, and I'll most likely get a tension rod and curtain to block it off when guests come to stay so they have their own little place. As you can see the plant-babies are making themselves at home.

My kitchen is also a sad state of affairs as there is about a foot of counter space divided in half by an XL sink. and my microwave is still sitting on boxes...


Part of the struggle with studio living combined with quirky Chicago apartment architecture is that there isn't always a lot of storage. This kitchen has extra tall cabinets, but no drawers. The silverware is currently living on the futon until a microwave stand with drawers can make its way in to my apartment.

Despite its peculiarity, from the very beginning it's felt like my own, which I've never had before in an apartment. It's a point of pride that I'm doing it all on my own in Chicago...until the rent is due anyway. I'm more excited than ever to make this apartment my home.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I Missed You!

I'm reporting to you from the coffee shop around the corner from my NEW STUDIO APARTMENT! In the midst of my laptop breaking the move took place, and Chez Kiley Kate is still without wireless as of this morning. A wire replacement next week should right well fix that. The gentleman from the cable company assured me that it would be a "fresh new wire" as if likening it to new crisp bed sheets or a clean coat of paint. But until then I'll be hanging out at Metropolis. Listening to The Cure and sipping Mexican Hot Chocolate seems like the right way to start my day off.

And since I don't know where my next wireless connection is coming from, I'll get posts done for the whole week today. Can you imagine that? A week's worth of posts after two weeks of utter radio silence.

I'll take you on a tour of my new apartment and my new found decor obsession. Can you blame me? I've never had a place all to myself! I also have 100+ unread blogs to attend to on my que which will hopefully garner some fashion inspiration that I've lost as of late. And of course there's always good ole' Chicago to write about. I've missed my creative outlet!