boyfriend, the latest

the (most important) men of ‘sex & the city,’ ranked by me

Thanks to a new Amazon Prime membership, I recently binge-watched all six seasons of¬†Sex and the City.¬†(No, I don’t have a life.) I’ve always been a fan of the show, but watched it rather sporadically, enjoying a re-run here and there instead of following it serially. Regardless, my recent bingeing and seasoned dating experience have given me a fresh perspective as to which men are worthy and which are trash.

1. Smith Jerrod

Smith did NOT get enough air time. Hotness aside, he was hands down the sweetest guy in all six seasons of¬†SATC.¬†He stuck by Samantha not just through cancer, but during a relapse with Richard (trash). Not to mention that he was totally unthreatened by Samantha’s success, didn’t care that tabloids thought he was gay, and worked super hard in his own career.

2. Steve Brady

Another under-appreciated gem is bartender Steve, who Miranda is literally so rude to until the last season. It was pretty inevitable that they would end up together, since they had a kid and all, but it’s impossible not to melt when Steve tells her that she’s “the one” at Brady’s birthday party. Also, Miranda totally dismissed him for wanting to be a career bartender, and in the meantime he opens his own super successful bar.

3. Harry Goldenblatt

I’ve always been a sucker for Harry – the reason for his mid-range rating is because he wouldn’t marry Charlotte unless she converted to Judaism. I believe in soulmates and true love, but that really might have been a deal breaker for me. Regardless, he’s super sweet to her, despite how embarrassed she is of him when they first start dating. I love an underdog, and Harry is the ultimate.

4. Aiden Shaw

I know everyone loves Aiden, but there were some red flags about him from day one. He wouldn’t date Carrie because she was a smoker, and TBH he was pretty rude about it. The relationship was a low point for Carrie as well, since she cheated on him, but I always thought Aiden was pretty immature. He was constantly threatened by Big (maybe rightfully so), which came off petty and childish. Oh, and he nearly booted Carrie from her apartment.

5. Trey MacDougal

Pretty bad. He and his mother were both totally unsupportive of Charlotte’s reproductive challenges, and were annoyingly traditional. Also, he claimed he was a “non-sexual person” and wouldn’t sleep with his WIFE, who caught him getting off to a dirty magazine in their bathroom. The only reason he’s not at the bottom of this list is because he let Charlotte keep that amazing apartment.

6. Jack Berger

Berger is the wooooorst. Threatened by Carrie’s success, listened to frog sounds to fall asleep, and totally hung up on his ex. And he broke up with her on a fucking post-it. Bye.

7. Big

If you’re not a seasoned¬†SATC¬†viewer, you probably think Big and Carrie’s relationship is super romantic. After close and careful analysis, I can safely say that this relationship was damaging and draining for both parties, more so for Carrie. Big obviously had serious commitment issues, but cast Carrie aside to marry 27-year-old Natasha. The only reason he’s not last is that he was always super encouraging of her career.

8. Aleksandr Petrovsky

Carrie should have kept him as a “lover” and stopped him from moving on to boyfriend status. She candidly told him that she didn’t want to rule out having kids, and he shut her down. He convinced her to go to Paris and left her wandering Chanel and the streets alone. He was rude to her friends, caused her to miss deadlines, and made her eat lunch alone with his ex-wife.

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pin-spiration

pin-spiration: dreamy bedrooms

My bedroom is important to me. I never shared a room until I went to college, and couldn’t wait to go back to having my own space when I graduated. I chose the Brooklyn apartment I lived in last summer because the bedroom was enormous, sunny, and under budget, and my current place because even though the bedroom is teeny tiny, there’s a large window and built-in shelving.

As a freelance writer, I do a lot of work from home. And since I also work 40 hours a week in an office, I don’t feel like I actually spend that much time in my room–so I value cozy mornings alone, powering through work on my bedroom floor. All this being said, I definitely am still dreaming about my perfect bedroom. Here’s some inspo c/o Pinterest.

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people, Uncategorized

sunshine blogger award

Last week, I was nominated by The Happiest Pixel for a Sunshine Blogger Award! One of my favorite things about writing a blog is the amazing online community that comes with it. Whether it’s people I follow here or through places like Instagram, it’s honestly such a joy to connect with people who pursue their passions–whether it’s their full-time job or a fulfilling side hustle.

The rules

  • Thank the person(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog
  • Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or on your blog

 

The Questions

If you could go back in time, what would you change?

I wouldn’t change anything! I think that everything does happen for a reason, and trying not to live without regrets is something I strive to do. There are some little things, like wishing I was better about not smashing my iPhone, but every problem has a solution.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Teaching, cooking, or writing. Maybe living abroad.

What is the thing you love to do the most?

Visit a new place.

If you had to leave your home and move somewhere else, where would you go?

Back to Amsterdam.

What is your favourite movie of all times?

Love Actually.

What is your dream job?

Owner of a greeting card shop.

If you were to go on a desert island and you could only bring one food with you, what would that be?

Chocolate.

Do you listen to music when you write your posts?

Occasionally. I currently have re-runs of The Office going on in the background right now.

What do you like to do on the weekends?

Go to brunch, visit someplace on my bucket list in NYC, and write.

Do you blog everyday?

I wish I did!

Name one person you are extremely thankful for and without whom, you wouldn’t be where you are today.

Very thankful for my mom, all day every day.

My Questions

  1. What inspired the name of your blog?
  2. What is the last book you read?
  3. What is your favorite sitcom?
  4. If you could have one material possession, what would it be?
  5. What is your favorite dessert?
  6. Where do you see yourself this time next year?
  7. What’s your favorite color?
  8. Do you have a signature dish that you cook best?
  9. What is your favorite social media platform?
  10. Where is the last place you traveled to?
  11. Do you prefer the ocean or a swimming pool?

My Nominees

  1. Powered by Mangos
  2. Style as Needed
  3. The Student Traveler
  4. Jessica Riga
  5. The Franco Fly
  6. Food to Glow
  7. Orchids & Sweet Tea
  8. The Dainty Details
  9. Alexis Chateau
  10. When in Wonderland
  11. Young & Twenty
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when corinne starts being relatable

I’m guessing many of you have been watching¬†The Bachelor, or at least have heard about the juicier events of the season through the grapevine. Enter: Corinne. I was not a fan of Corinne from day one, but was not surprised when, time and time again, Nick continued to give her roses. (Nick sucks.)

Corinne is the kind of¬†entitled person I’ve always disliked. I placed her in the category of people who have wealthy parents to pay for their rent and donate their way into college. Regardless, Corinne’s exit from the show last week was relatable AF.

I remember watching¬†Bachelor¬†in high school and everyone seemed so much older than me and at such different points in their lives than I was–but now, there are contestants who are the same age as me (or just a year or two older), and I can relate to their occupations and relationship histories. Corinne’s speech in the back of the limo was just super relatable…why can’t I have a normal relationship? I just want love the way it’s supposed to be, too!!

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people

old men i think are weirdly hot

I don’t have much else to say about this. LMK if you agree!!¬†ūüėČ

1. John Slattery

john slattery made men hot guy

This obsession started with¬†Mad Men (scroll back far enough on my Instagram and you’ll see several photoshopped pics of me & Mr. Slattery at red carpet events xo). But, like, really…dapper AF.


2. Liam Neeson

liam neeson taken love actually

This one always comes back to Love Actually. 


3. Alec Baldwin

alec baldwin 30 rock snl

Since he started being Donald Trump on SNL, my attraction is fading. But, still hot.


4. Tom Selleck

tom selleck police friends

I used to make fun of my mom for thinking he was hot. Don’t @ me, Monica Geller.


5. Javier Bardem

javier bardem eat pray love

Gotta add some Latin flavor to this list.


6. Russell Crowe

russell crowe ryan gosling hot guy

Ryan Gosling is NOT the hot one in this gif.


7. Chris Meloni

chris meloni svu law and order elliot stabler

I wish Elliot Stabler would answer if I ever needed to call 911.


8. Patrick Dempsey

patrick dempsey greys anatomy mcdreamy

I know, I know, everyone loves McDreamy. But seriously…some things just get better with age.

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true life: my 9-5 is killing me

I have always craved stability. When I graduated from college, all I wanted in the world was a standard 9-5 job. Though I didn’t land my dream job, I made enough money to pay rent, ball out a little, and still had time to work on my side hustle. I’ve since upgraded to a new position, but still feel like something is missing from my life.

Totally opposite to my craving for stability is my desire for a life worth living–and a fear of “settling.” One full of adventure, envy-inducing Instagram posts, and stories that will shock my grandchildren in 50 years. While I feel so incredibly fortunate to even be employed, I still feel like something is missing. I wish so badly that I would be content working at a desk job and living the suburbs. Life would be so much easier, but I know that it would kill me a little bit.

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When I was still in school, I remember looking at people like Yoga Girl and Chelsie Antos, waiting for it to be my turn to teach yoga in Aruba or go RVing around America with my hot husband. While neither of those things specifically will probably ever happen to me, you get the idea. I wanted to be mildly responsible, get my degree, make some money, and then start exploring the world. Now, I want my life to have a little more purpose: for myself (selfishly), and for others (also kind of selfish).

Until I can start making big moves (i.e. waiting for my lease to run out), I would love to hear your ideas for keeping life exciting in the space between M-F, 9-5.

Follow new york is my boyfriend on Instagram.

**Check out my updated (and very professional) portfolio. 

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i found my voice…again

The only truly bad¬†thing about getting paid to write is that something I have always enjoyed has turned into something I¬†have¬†to do. Budgeting time to turn everything in on time, following style rules of different publications, and being as professional as possible via email to make sure I get paid. I started tackling assignments with a mentality of “getting it over with,” a significant switch in mindset since I used to savor the time I spent working on this blog.

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My¬†blog has always been a creative¬†outlet. I can use as many Oxford commas and semi-colons as I want. And it’s gif galore up in here! The only opinion on this website is my own–though that sounds a lot more egotistic than I mean.¬†For the second half of my American educational experience, my teachers consistently complimented my voice as a writer. I didn’t fully grasp what they meant at the time, but as I started peer-editing my classmates’ work and copy editing for the school paper, I started to understand. I want my writing to feel like a conversation. It is unpretentious, it should hopefully make you crack a smile. I like to think that if we met in person, my voice IRL would sound like the one that comes through here.

In churning out as much work as possible to make that $$$, I realized that I started cutting corners on¬†authenticity, and my voice wasn’t as bright as it used to be. Thanks to some recent job changes on my part, I’ve had time to think about the kind of writer I want to be. And I sure as hell better be one with her own voice.

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why my phone makes me smile for 2 seconds every day

I’ve been having a very bittersweet couple of months. My work life has been fantastic, and I feel that I’ve had some incredible opportunities as a writer and a professional. I moved to a new apartment in a new neighborhood, which has been really great. I had two weeks off at the holidays to spend time with my family and hometown friends. I also got to visit my college BFF in Austin, a city I’d been dying to go to.

Conversely, some not-so-good things have taken place. My grandmother passed away a week before Christmas, so it was a hard time for my family. I‚Äôve had dozens of job interviews, but haven‚Äôt received any offers (note: I‚Äôm quite happy at my current position, but am always looking for the next best thing). I‚Äôve also been struggling to come to terms with parts of my personal/dating life–more on that here.

I make a conscious effort to be a happy person. I exercise primarily for the endorphins. I eat food that I like. I watch TV shows that make me laugh. I write about my feelings, both on this blog and in a journal. But all of my negative, depressing feelings surfaced the other day when I was sitting at my desk at work. My heart started beating super fast, and I felt panicked and overwhelmed–by existence as an adult, my quickly approaching first solo trip, the guy who won‚Äôt text me back, my constant questioning of past¬†life choices. I texted my mom and she told me to go outside, get some fresh air, and stretch my legs. Combined with an iced coffee, her remedy worked.

smile

Later that day, I decided that I needed some kind of mental sticky note–something to remind me to be positive, that I am great, that everything is ok. While I was setting the alarm on my phone for the next morning, I had an idea to set a kind of self love reminder. I set it for 11:30am, on vibrate, labeled ‚ÄúYou deserve the world. Everything is going to be ok.‚ÄĚ It makes me smile everyday, and reminds me that focusing on myself is the most important thing I can do right now.

Follow new york is my boyfriend on instagram.

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the biggest thing NYC ruined for me

I always loved grocery shopping. Even after working at the local supermarket in high school and in the summer when I came home from college, I was never wary of the shiny linoleum aisles and well-stocked shelves.

This is because grocery shopping in a pleasant suburb is completely unlike shopping in New York. Suburban supermarkets get those cool, limited edition products (like peppermint Chobani) while NYC vendors sell crap you forgot existed (remember Kudos bars?). And then there are the prices. $7.99 for a half-gallon of ice cream. $4.99 for a gallon of milk. $7 for a carton of strawberries. All of these things are usually around $3 at my hometown grocery store.

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At the store in my hometown, you can push a full-sized shopping cart down each wide aisle, taking your time to choose the right items. You can buy 12-pack cans of soda, 16-count packs of paper towels, and other heavy items, knowing you just have to wheel them out to your SUV and drive home, traffic-free. In New York, I can only buy what I can carry (unless I spring for an Uber).

But it gets worse…the crowds! I have never found NYC to be overwhelmingly crowded, except in midtown during the holidays. Trader Joe’s on a Saturday afternoon is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. When I lived in Brooklyn, the TJ’s closest to me would sometimes have a line of people outside, waiting to go in. Inside the store, the line wraps through the aisles–you’re better off grabbing a basket, hopping in line, and shopping as you weave throughout the store. Whole Foods has an insane (but effective) color-coded system for sending shoppers to open registers, but¬†there is almost ALWAYS a line.

People say that living in a city is worth it for its conveniences, but man, oh man, what I wouldn’t give for an afternoon at Market Basket.

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another year, another 3 resolutions

Well…2016 is finally coming to an end. I think a lot of people have mixed feelings about this past year–for me, it was definitely a rollercoaster.¬†SO much has changed in the last twelve months. I graduated from college, got a 9-5 job, and moved twice.¬†It’s kind of crazy how unprepared I felt for it all, and how many added responsibilities I now have.

2016 coming to an end has me thinking about where I’ll be this time next year. There are still a lot of things I want to do, like get a Master’s degree and live abroad (maybe I can combine these two…), so who knows if either of those will become a reality over the next twelve months.

This time of year is always overwhelming, between Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s eve, and my birthday (it’s a busy two months!), but I wanted to take time to make a list of my resolutions for 2017.

champagne.gif

1. Have dates with myself. I’ve found myself wistfully scrolling through Instagram and seeing cool gallery exhibits, pop-up eateries, and outdoor installations, yet never actually go to these things–even though tons of them are right here in NYC! I want to make more of an effort to actually¬†go¬†to these kinds of things, even if I can’t find someone else who wants to tag along.

2. Get my finances in order. I started working on this a few months ago when I realized that I have to pay taxes (yay, freelancing!). But I definitely want to get my expenses in order so I can invest and save the rest.

3. STOP CARING ABOUT BOYS! I literally sound like a broken record but I am so sick of spending time and energy on dead-end relationships. I promise to work on this so I can stop whining about it…

mindy1.gif

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Uncategorized

pin-spiration: outdoor living

I’ve always dreamed of having a¬†Secret Garden-style backyard. Victorian details, Roman columns, lots of greenery, quaint benches…you get it, right? Something about having a tranquil escape just a few steps from my house (pardon, my studio apartment) seems so freaking appealing.

As I continue to live in cramped quarters here in NYC, I’ll be dreaming about outdoor spaces like these. *heart eyes*

All photos sourced from Pinterest.
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nobody ever told me i couldn’t be whatever i wanted

America’s recent presidential election has sparked a number of discussions about race, gender, class, and privilege across the United States. Like any other country, ours has its flaws. As a woman in the United States, I will receive an unfairly short maternity leave when I decide to have babies. I will never make as much money as a man who does the same job as me. I will be scared to walk home alone at night regardless of how safe my neighborhood is. I will go to professional meetings where men will look at my breasts when they speak to me. I will be “asking for it” if I wear a short dress. I will be “hormonal” if something upsets me.

princess diaries.gif

I am not pretending that my life has been filled with hardship. I was lucky that my parents started saving money for my college tuition the day I was born. I was lucky that I grew up in a place where you don’t have to lock your doors. And I was lucky that nobody EVER told me that I couldn’t grow up to do or be whatever I wanted to.

To my parents, my sister and I are exempt from every negative thing you hear in the media about being female. To them, there is nothing we cannot do, even though we are women and will have to work twice as hard, look over our shoulders when we walk home at night, and be belittled over the course of our lives.

Because of this, they have no understanding of how terrified I am that someone accused of multiple sexual assaults has been elected president of a country I have loved and been proud of my entire life. Because of how hard they have worked, they believe that nothing bad will ever happen to us–and I am not allowed to be a victim. I am not allowed to talk about how many times things happened to me that I didn’t consent to; how many times my feelings were brushed aside; how many times I felt ashamed to be a woman.

I don’t consider myself a political person (and this blog is not a place for politics) but as someone who¬†hopes to one day live in a peaceful world, it’s hard to remain silent.

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things to be thankful for any time of year

 

Last winter, I went kind of all-out with New Year’s resolution posts. Since we just celebrated Thanksgiving and we’re now approaching the end of¬†2016 (YIKES), I wanted to reflect on how I’ve tackled my goals as well on the kind of things we should resolve to do more often.

Last December, I resolved to keep doing me. I wanted to focus on being my best, happiest self, and have been trying to rid my life of all things toxic. I had an amazing 2015. I studied abroad, worked hard in school, and got an internship that helped me get to where I am today. So far in 2016, I had another incredible internship, graduated from college, and landed a great¬†job. I’ve also been¬†selling my writing and feel like I can finally say, with confidence, that I’m a writer.

I’m thankful for a lot of things when I wake up every day–I’m grateful I was able to stay in NYC after finishing school, I’m grateful that I get to work in an industry I’ve always dreamed of, I’m grateful that I’m healthy, and I’m grateful for the good things to come. Anyway, here are things we can all be thankful for, all the time.giphy-8

be thankful for…

Happy hour.

Whoever pays for your Netflix account. And just Netflix, in general.

Instagram filters.

Double star days at Starbucks.

Free shipping.

The pizza delivery guy who works rain or shine.

 

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no fail* travel tips

I’m not going to try to sell myself as a cool, hip globetrotter. You may or may not know that I spent a semester abroad my junior year and managed to visit 8 countries in ~5 months, and I’ve been to like 40 states in America (including Alaska and Hawaii, so THERE) thanks to my parents’ shared passion for domestic travel and national parks.

In my 22 years of traveling, I like to think I’ve picked up a few (almost) no fail tips and tricks for making every journey a success–whether you’re with your family or your drinking buddies.

1. For the love of God, don’t get on a tour bus.

bus.gif

Ok, ok, that was a little dramatic. I’ve done my fair share of bus tours on family trips, and they definitely come with pros and cons. If you’re in a foreign country (where you don’t speak the language) for a limited amount of time, a tour bus could be a good option. You won’t have to spend time trying to understand the local public transit system, and if it’s a “hop on, hop off” kind of deal, it’s basically a free shuttle around the city. But OH MY GOD do not take one in New York. I don’t understand why anyone would come to NYC, look at all the traffic, and decide to hop on a freaking bus. Take the subway, rent a bike, or take a city bus.

2. Go where the Anthropologie is.

shopping

This is a rule of thumb I have for finding cute shopping neighborhoods in large cities. And it doesn’t have to be Anthropologie (if you’re in Amsterdam, try Dille & Kamille), but looking up boutique-y stores like this will usually land you in a trendy, non-commercialized shopping district. Just make sure it’s not far from the city center, because then you’ll probably end up at a mall. Not the worst thing, but you know.

3. STAY! TOGETHER!!

stay-together

This is especially important if you’re abroad and can only iMessage/WhatsApp over WiFi! Organize your schedule ahead of time so everyone gets to see what they want without getting separated. And if you must split up, agree on a very specific meeting place. Not “outside of the Louvre” but “in front of the rightmost table at the outdoor cafe on the right side of the third pyramid at the Louvre.” Got it?

4. Back it up.

selfie

My phone is constantly out of storage. Literally twice a week, I’ll try to take a picture and my phone won’t let me. To avoid this problem when traveling, be thorough and back up your whole phone to your iCloud/laptop/hard drive/whatever before a big trip, and then delete the photos form your actual phone so it has room for all your selfies!

Happy trails!!

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legitimate questions and concerns

I recently finished reading Mindy Kaling’s¬†Why Not Me?, and you ALL should read it. Like, I read it in two days commuting to work and literally burst out laughing so people on the train thought I was crazy. You should also read her first book, all her tweets, and anything else she has ever written ever. Mindy is someone I respect a whole lot, and I feel so lucky to have a funny person who isn’t a size zero¬†as a role model. In her newest book, she brings up a list of questions and concerns called “4am Worries.”¬†I related to a lot of them (I will never have a husband and all of my female acquaintances will) and laughed at others (Why was there so much hair in the shower drain? Am I going bald? Will I need to invest in a wig?).

mind.gif

As someone who regularly cannot fall asleep because I’m too busy picturing worst-case-scenarios and wondering what I’m doing with my life, I have my own list of 4am worries.

Will I ever be able to afford a house?

Why don’t I have a boyfriend? Do I even want a boyfriend?

What if I wait too long to get married and my dad won’t be there to walk me down the aisle?

What if I wait too long to have kids and neither of my parents are here anymore?

Do I have the Alzheimer’s gene?

What if my friends stop wanting to be friends with me?

What is a 401k? What is social security? How does a mortgage work? Do I need to hire an accountant to do my taxes? Is it OK that I’m 22 and my dad still does them for me?

Did I pay my credit card bill on time?

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what your choice of dating site says about you

mindy.gif

I’m (OBVIOUSLY) no stranger to dating apps. In fact, I’ve tried just about every single one. In using everything from Tinder to OkCupid, I’ve learned a thing or two about the kinds of people each app attracts. Here, what your preferred app says about Y-O-U.

1. Bumble

bumble

You’re an over-achiever. All of your social media platforms are totally professional, and there isn’t a keg stand photo of you to be found on the Internet. If you’re a female user, you’re cool, confident, and collected–and if you’ve managed to get lucky on Bumble, I’m betting you have a stockpile of witty pick-up lines (please send over). If you’re a male user, you’ve either been raised to appreciate women or are lazy AF.

2. Tinder

tinder

You’re not here for anything serious. Chances are, you like the instant gratification of swiping and matching with someone, and have a hard time¬†making long-term commitments. You’re likely a nomad, jack-of-all trades, who can’t stay in one place for too long. If you’re a male user, you’re drawn to Tinder by its ease of use and unspoken promise of a hook-up.

3. OkCupid

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You prefer browsing singles on desktop rather than mobile, or maybe you like the flexibility to do both. If you’re a male user, you’re highly aggressive–since you don’t have to¬†“match” with someone before you start a convo, you can literally message anybody. If you’re a female user, you probably know someone who met their husband on OkCupid (literally a one in a million chance), and joined with a faint hope of finding something real. Also, you probably like attention since you’ll get approximately 400 messages a day.

4. Happn

happn

This one is for anyone who regularly trolls the missed connections section on Craigslist (guilty ūüôč). You’re a hopeless romantic who believes in fate and chance encounter. Good luck out there.

5. Match

match

You’re ready for commitment and financially stable enough to pay for a dating site membership. You’ve probably used all of the above apps to no avail, and finally caved for something that promises results. You’re someone who doesn’t like bullshit, and regularly mutters “I’m too old for this.”

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pin-spiration: sandwiches

Call me Joey Tribbiani, but I love a good sandwich. Sandwiches are perfect any time of day–eat one with a cup of coffee for breakfast, a bag of chips for lunch, and a bowl of tomato soup for dinner. One of my all-time favorite sammies is a classic caprese–lots of garlicky pesto, melty mozzarella, and thin slices of tomato. I’m also ALWAYS down for a quality veggie burger, as long as it doesn’t have mushrooms in it. These are some of my favorite foodie finds on Pinterest…check the rest out here!

Photos sourced from Pinterest and are not my own.
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10 reasons why tyra banks is the og role model

During middle school and some of high school, my after school ritual was going home to watch The Tyra Show. It was on every day at 4pm, and I’d watch it on the couch while doing tedious homework and eating popcorn. This show was a blessing–we never had anything besides basic cable, and this was one of the non-primetime shows I actually enjoyed. Tyra taught me more about confidence and career than anyone else did in my early teens. Here is why she’s a pioneer role model–and someone else who doesn’t get enough credit.

1. First of all, she invented the smize.

smize

2. She hosted a reality show for TWENTY TWO seasons. Like, before America was even obsessed with reality television.

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3. She won two Daytime Emmy awards for Outstanding Talk Show, Informative. And boy, was it informative.

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4. She does it all–the girl can act, model, sing, and write.

 

5. Tyra founded her own production company.

6. She completed a management program at Harvard Business School, and was a guest lecturer at Stanford. Oh, s-nap.

snap

7. One of her most impressive feats is the TZONE program, which Banks launched to empower young women to be leaders. She also created a scholarship fund at her Catholic high school.

 

8. She’s been an advocate for body positivity before it was trendy.

fat

9. Tyra talked openly on her show about walking away from abusive relationships

10. Her beauty start-up makes a lipstick shade called “Ask for a Raise.” Like, how f***ing badass?

‚ÄúMy mom never taught me to be waiting for some prince on a white horse to swipe me off my feet.‚ÄĚ

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a surefire sign of adulthood: getting real with your eating habits

It hit me the other day when I was checking out at Trader Joe’s that I eat like a five-year-old. I always have mini pizza bites and Morningstar buffalo wings in my freezer, and regularly eat a bowl of plain rice, polenta, or cereal for dinner. I drink apple juice out of boxes marketed for schoolchildren, and my favorite lunch is grilled cheese and tomato soup.

It’s weird because sometimes I feel like I come off as someone who’s all about organic food, loves to try new vegetables, and shops at farmer’s markets. All of these things are mostly true–but I also realized I’ve gotten to the point where I’m realistic about how and what I eat. Like when I make a salad at work–a year ago I would have loaded it up with a little bit of everything, and then ended up picking around certain things. I like the idea of tomatoes, but I’m not one to pop cherry tomatoes for a snack. And I’m probably only going to want one slice of cucumber. AND I’ll probably avoid that hard-boiled egg.

healthy

This mentality of having an internal discussion about what I’m¬†actually¬†going to eat has translated to grocery shopping. You know those cardboard¬†cartons of soup? I’m not gonna finish that before it expires. I’ll probably heat up one bowl, and then forget about it in the back of the fridge. Bagged lettuce? No way am I going to eat all that before it starts turning brown and squelchy. (Wow, for a food writer, these descriptions are on freaking point.)

I deeply believe that life is all about balance. Sure, I’ll have Kraft mac & cheese for dinner every once in a while, but I also eat a banana for breakfast everyday. I ate a donut yesterday, but I also spent 45 minutes in a cycling class. So even though, @TraderJoesCashier, the only things in my shopping basket the other day were cookie butter, Gouda cheese, avocados, yogurt, and fruit leather, I PROMISE you I bought a salad for lunch every day this week.

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people, Uncategorized

why rachel green doesn’t get enough credit

Even though numerous people and Buzzfeed quizzes have told me I’m most similar to her, Rachel isn’t my favorite¬†Friends¬†character (see Chandler Bing). But after re-watching the series for the umpteenth time, I realized that she doesn’t get nearly enough credit.

She didn’t marry Barry because she wasn’t in love with him, even though it would’ve been the safe thing to do and her family wanted her to.

rachel-wedding

She paid her dues and worked her way up to her dream job.

rachel

She was an amazing friend and not afraid to speak her mind. Maybe I should aspire to be more like Rach!!

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Uncategorized

5 things i learned after 5 months of freelancing

Even though I have a regular 9-5 job working at a magazine I’ve always admired, my side hustle has been especially lucrative lately. I’ve been doing a lot of freelance writing, simultaneously bulking up my portfolio as a writer and making some extra spending money. There’s something wonderfully appealing about freelancing…you can work from home (or anywhere in the world with an Internet connection), have flexibility with deadlines, and get to write about things that interest you.

I know some people do this full time–I’m not sure I ever could, since the money varies month to month, but so far it’s been a great way for me to profit from something I’m passionate about–and something I’d literally be doing¬†for free, anyway (cue: this blog). Here are five things I’ve learned since stepping up my freelance game in June.

1. It will take forever to get paid.

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Between waiting for invoices to be approved and checks to go in the mail, expect to wait a month until you see payment for your story.

2. Keep track of EVERYTHING.

paperwork

I write for multiple sites, and it quickly became difficult to keep track of who had paid me and who I still needed to send invoices to. I use Google Sheets to keep track of every story I sell, and note within this document which pieces have been invoiced and paid.

3. Follow up.

follow-up

Editors are busy–you’re probably one of many writers they deal with, so if you don’t hear back for a few days, don’t take it personally. Don’t be afraid to follow up…especially if they owe you money.

4. Use a dedicated workspace.

writer

Some people are good at working from home, and while I like the idea very much, I’m not one of them–though that may change once it gets colder and I don’t want to leave my apartment. If I have an overwhelming amount of work to do, I take my laptop to a local coffee shop and stay there until the battery dies.

5. Pitch as many ideas as you have.

typing

I send dozens of pitches a week, knowing that only a handful will get picked up. I’ve learned that I have a better chance of getting more stories picked up if I pitch more in the first place!

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boyfriend, Uncategorized

expectations vs. reality

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I’m a romantic. If you’ve spent any time on this blog, or know me IRL, that should be pretty obvious. I believe in soulmates. I believe in fate. I read my horoscope regularly (though I take it with a grain of salt). I don’t think anything is a coincidence.¬†I try so incredibly hard to be a Samantha, but I’ll always be a Carrie…mixed with a little Miranda minus the haircut.

Right after I deleted Tinder, I got into the “hanging out” phase of dating someone. We met through the app, and went on our first date shortly after I moved to my new neighborhood. I wasn’t enthralled or super impressed by his online profile–he seemed kind of hipster, his job title had “freelance” in it (I usually go for investment banker types), and it took him hours to answer my messages. But the bar he suggested was within walking distance and I didn’t have any other plans on Wednesday night, so why not?

Chemistry is 100% a thing–someone can be perfect on paper for you, and you can have a perfectly delightful time at dinner, but if there isn’t a spark, I’m 0% interested in pursuing it. So I was pleasantly surprised when I met this guy who was as tall as he said he was and smiled at me like I was the prettiest¬†girl he ever saw. The good vibes continued when I learned we had the same birthday. And the flame grew brighter when we watched Netflix¬†at his house and I discovered¬†that he watches TV with closed-captioning, too.

We seemed to like each other so much and get along so well–I would talk for hours about nothing, and he would just listen and smile at me. He sings in a band and when I listened to the album alone in my room I cried because I liked it so much.

But just like everything else in my life, expectations exceeded reality. Though he’s 7 years older than me, he still acts like a 19-year-old boy. There is no semblance of commitment, of wanting something more.¬†Why didn’t he want to come to Brooklyn Flea with me? Or go to the movies? Why won’t¬†he always answer my texts? Why doesn’t he like any of my Instagram pictures? And the biggest question of all…why am I¬†still¬†chasing him?

Around the same time,¬†I met someone else–someone who adamantly expresses how interested he was in me, wants to take me on all these exciting dates, is professional and ambitious and texts me everyday…yet he doesn’t look at me the same way and doesn’t seem interested in what I have to say. I’m still more attracted to this other boy who disappears for days on end. Is it because my fate-driven perspective feels there’s some deeper connection? Even though he’s someone who makes me feel distant, insecure, and insignificant?

I’ve been trying really hard to be the “cool girl.” To go with the flow, be casual and nonchalant when in reality a thousand questions and worries and insecurities are eating me up inside. Why are we drawn to people who have so little to offer us?

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the latest

sound bites

sound-bites

Things I found and loved on the Internet this week.

This post almost convinced me to give up drinking on Tinder dates.

Style rules from my all-time favorite comedienne.

My latest byline.

A photo tour of an incredible NYC apartment.

I’m a big fan of this comfy trend.

This recipe for perfect, creamy tomato soup.

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the latest, Uncategorized

why chandler bing is low-key the perfect guy

I still can’t believe that the first time I watched¬†Friends¬†I thought Ross was the cutest guy on the show. In my high school years, I was all about Joey, since he was a famous actor and all, but in college¬†I moved on to Chandler. Cushy finance job? Check! Makes me LOL? Check! Is insecure enough to be desperate? Double check! Here are 8 reasons why Chandler Bing is the perfect man (despite his unfortunate sounding name).

1. He’s funny AF.

chandler-funny

2. His hair is always on point.

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3. He’s not just another finance guy.

chandler bank.gif

4. He quit his job to pursue his passion.

chandler-cheese

5. He always says what he’s thinking.

chandler-bitch

6. He’s a great cuddler.

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7. He’s an amazing dancer.

chandler

8. And a great friend.

chandler-hug

Follow new york is my boyfriend on Instagram. 

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boyfriend, Uncategorized

things guys pretend to hate but really don’t

I feel like I talk (bitch, whine, complain) a lot about trying to figure guys out. Why are they so douchey? Why do they like one night stands? Why doesn’t Jim Halpert exist in real life?¬†I’ve also started to realize that guys claim to “hate” a lot of things that are actually impossible to hate. Here are 5 of those things, dissected.

1. Brunch.

mimosa

Ok, like what person doesn’t like brunch? Like, if you’re not into waiting for a table at The Smith for an hour and dropping $16 on a mimosa, that’s totally fine–but how do you not like French toast? Or omelets? Or bacon–don’t all guys have to pretend to be rampant carnivores to satisfy their idea of masculinity? Sure, a big reason why I like brunch is because breakfast food is aesthetically appealing so it makes for a super cute Instagram post. But I also really ****ing love Belgian waffles and drinking before noon.

2. Champagne.

champagne

Speaking of mimosas, why do guys pretend to hate champagne? I’m a little more understanding of people who don’t like wine (OK, I don’t really get it but whatever), but champagne is like grown-up soda. It’s fizzy and delicious and is almost the same color as beer, so let’s get with the program, please. Plus, pop a bottle open to instantly get the party started.

3. Romantic comedies.

13-going-on-30

Everyone knows that rom-coms aren’t cinematic masterpieces. When I suggest watching one, I’m not trying to impress you with my artistic taste, I’m trying to cozy up for 90 minutes of heartfelt viewing. I watch them because they’re endearing, you don’t have to pay a ton of attention, and they usually make me smile. Liking 13 Going on 30 or You’ve Got Mail or Sleepless in Seattle doesn’t make you less of a man! Now come watch Love Actually with me.

4. Cupcakes.

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Literally bye. It’s a cup of cake.

5. Friends.

chandler

Try not laughing at Chandler’s joked. If you don’t laugh, don’t talk to me, because this will never work out.

Follow new york is my boyfriend on Instagram.

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pin-spiration, Uncategorized

pin-spiration: soups on soups

It’s FALL! And you know what that means…we can start eating soup again!! Soup is probably my favorite food, and it literally pains me that it’s too hot in the summer to eat a cup¬†of chowder or get down with some tomato bisque. How good do all these bowls look?

Follow me on Pinterest for more.

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boyfriend, Uncategorized

why fall is the worst time to be single

Something about football season, cozy clothes, and Instagrammable leaves makes fall seem like a great time to be in a relationship…not that I’m in one. I remember starting my first year of college and assuming I would have a boyfriend to bring home to meet my parents over Thanksgiving weekend. I literally¬†laughed out loud as I wrote that. Anyway, here are some reasons why being single in my favorite season is worse than any other time of year.

1. You don’t have a cute significant other to take pumpkin patch pics with, so your Instagram game is suffering.

chandler

2. You don’t have someone to steal oversize flannel shirts from.

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3. Another year of not being part of a couples Halloween costume.

jim

4. The holidays are coming up, so you know your extended family is going to be questioning your perennial singleness.

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5. It suddenly seems like everybody is in a relationship except you, so you spend your nights drinking white wine alone in your apartment.

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6. Love Actually is back on Netflix, and you don’t have anyone to watch it with. (Actually, I can’t even get my mom to watch this with me so idk how valid this complaint is.)

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the latest, Uncategorized

sound bites

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Things I found and enjoyed on the web this week.

I’m pretty loyal to Polar, but this DIY LaCroix can designer is a fun way to waste some time.

How to make my favorite pasta dish by one of my favorite New York chefs.

Apartment advice from one of my favorite Man Repeller writers.

News about vodka that could actually be good for your liver. (Also a shameless plug for my writing.)

This mesmerizing video recipe for chocolate cake that I will be making ASAP.

I got Rory on this quiz.

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pin-spiration

pin-spiration: kitchen goals

As a self-proclaimed “foodie,” I love to cook almost as much as I love to eat and¬†Instagram my favorite dishes. My childhood homes always had¬†generously-sized kitchens–my mother is a wonderful cook, and prepared dinner for my family every night, so the kitchen was an integral room in the house.

I haven’t been so lucky in any of my apartments in terms of counter space and top-notch appliances. My college apartments lacked counter space, taking all the fun out of food prep, and the kitchen in my new apartment is so teeny that I haven’t even attempted to cook anything other than grilled cheese sandwiches¬†and eggs. Apartment hunting in New York is kind of a nightmare, and I’m pretty realistic about never having a kitchen larger than a closet as long as I’m living here. In the meantime, I’ll be dreaming about spaces like these.

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interning 101

I‚Äôve previously talked about how important my internship experiences were‚ÄĒI learned so much, and in addition to beefing up my resume, the jobs themselves were invaluable.

I got my first internship after my first year of college, when I still thought I was going to major in Art History. I emailed a local gallery in my hometown essentially offering to be their intern/provide free labor, and they took me on one day a week. Looking back, this was not a valuable use of my time‚ÄĒthis position isn‚Äôt even listed on my resume because aside from being irrelevant to my career field, I didn‚Äôt learn or do much.

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One of the biggest things I‚Äôve learned from my experience as an intern is that the quality of your experience largely depends on your supervisor‚ÄĒhow willing are they to give you work? Are they going to teach you how to do new things? Will they trust you to do more than stick stamps on 400 postcards? Regardless, from my various internship experiences I‚Äôve picked up several tips and learned a few unspoken rules that all interns should follow.

Take notes.

If a co-worker asks if you can help them with something, write down what they‚Äôre asking you. Try to ask all of your questions while they‚Äôre showing you how to do something or giving you instructions for a task so you‚Äôre not emailing them from the Duane Reade to confirm what size bottle of liquigel Advil they want. This is especially important if you have an editorial internship‚ÄĒwhy would you ever not have a pen and notepad in your hands at all times?!

That being said, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

I’ve always naturally been a bit introverted and shy, but I can guarantee that your boss would rather you ask five questions and do a perfect job than ask no questions and make five mistakes.

Be confident.

If you wrote a cover letter, had an interview (or two or three), and did an edit test or some equivalent to prove your worth, you deserve to be there. It’s kind of crazy how many people are fighting for the same unpaid internship, so when you get that offer you should feel pretty proud of yourself and know that you have a right to be there, and your boss clearly thinks highly enough of you to want to see you everyday.

Be on time.

I think this goes without saying.

Ask for what you want.

At the end of my final college internship, I didn’t want to leave. I spoke with my boss about the possibility of getting a real, grown-up job there, but unfortunately, the timing just wasn’t right. Even though I didn’t get what I asked for, I expressed how much I loved working there and I think it strengthened my relationships with my supervisors and coworkers long after I left.

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rejects

things i wrote that i thought were good but nobody else did

As someone who aspires to make a living by writing, I pitch a lot of story ideas to various websites–I’ll think of maybe 10 ideas, and be thrilled if the editor likes two or three. I’ve also written quite a few personal/human interest pieces that I’ve submitted to major publications that were met with rejection…which is totally fine! I just don’t like my time to go to waste, so I’ve decided to share these literary rejections with you. Here’s the first! (Submitted to Hearst’s “The Mix” before it was shuttered earlier this summer.)

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Almost daily, I take the 9:23 commuter train to work. And almost daily, there’s a woman a few seats in front of me who spends the entire train ride doing her makeup. I am by no means a morning person, but I really don’t feel like¬†9:23¬†is painfully¬†early. I always manage to give myself plenty of time to fix my hair and put on my makeup before leaving the house. Unfortunately, many of my travel companions seem to lack these time management skills. I’ve become familiar with some of my fellow commuters who clearly depend on the 25-minute train ride to transform from bedheads to beauty queens. Foundation, powder, eyeshadow, eyeliner and mascara are, admittedly, masterfully applied with one hand while the other holds a compact mirror.

It’s one thing to touch up your lipstick, or dab a little concealer on a zit, but it’s another to contour your face on a moving train. Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve always thought it was worth it to wake up an extra ten minutes early so I can¬†attempt a smoky eye at¬†the comfort of my own vanity table.

This public application of makeup bothers me so irrationally¬†for a couple of reasons. The first is that I value my privacy so much that I can’t imagine putting on makeup while a¬†train car of disgruntled commuters looks¬†on. I have a hard time just letting the salespeople at Sephora show me how to¬†use a kabuki brush in a store full of people, let alone paint while balding businessmen peer over their newspapers at me. For me, makeup is a part of getting ready–in the same category as taking a shower and getting dressed. (All of which I like to do in the privacy of my apartment). Also, isn’t it frustrating to have to pack up a little makeup bag every single morning? What if your mascara wand falls on the germ-covered seat? Or worse–the floor?

The second is that it says something to me about your priorities and time management capabilities. Anyone who knows me will tell you that one of my biggest pet peeves is lateness. While I can appreciate that you’re applying makeup during your commute to save time and¬†not¬†be late to work, I’d appreciate it more if you managed your pre-train ride morning routine a little bit better. As a non-makeup professional¬†who has made a routine of¬†makeup in two minutes (concealer, a few strokes of bronzer, liquid liner, and some mascara), it’s puzzling to me that you would need to spend over twenty minutes putting¬†on makeup for work. Sure, when I go out at night I’ll take¬†a little more time on my makeup, but I keep things pretty clean and¬†simple at the office, as do most of my co-workers.

My point is, there are other ways to manage your time efficiently that doesn’t have to include publicly applying your makeup. Put on your foundation while you wait for your coffee to percolate.¬†Apply lipstick while you’re waiting for your mascara to dry. And please, please paint your nails the night before so I don’t have to breathe in acetone for breakfast.

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pin-spiration, Uncategorized

pin-spiration: pizza

Pizza is literally the perfect¬†food. Like, if I could only eat one thing for the rest of my life, it would be a perfect margherita pizza–like the one I had this past weekend at Barboncino, a trendy spot in my new neighborhood. It makes sense, since cheese and bread are two of my favorite foods…throw a little spicy tomato sauce and basil into the mix and I’m incredibly content.

all photos sourced from pinterest.

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the latest, Uncategorized

i’m not sorry

I’ve recently noticed a lot of Internet literature (like this and this) regarding¬†the habit of over-apologizing that plagues millennial women. I’d always thought that in addition to being used for a formal apology, saying “sorry” was just a polite thing to do, even if you haven’t done anything wrong.

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I¬†say sorry when I feel like I’m bothering my boss too much via email, when I really just want to make sure I’m doing things correctly. I say sorry when I ask the cashier to pack my groceries in a reusable shopping bag. I say sorry when a waiter brings me a regular Coke instead of diet, even though I know I ordered correctly. In reality, I shouldn’t be sorry for any of these things–my existence and my preferences aren’t an inconvenience.

‚ÄúI think along with ‚ÄėI‚Äôm sorry‚Äô comes the fluttering eyes and bad posture and maybe the raised shoulder as if to protect yourself from what‚Äôs coming.¬†I‚Äôm asking women to own up to that, to stop saying they‚Äôre sorry, and to stand up straight and to look at people in the eye and be cool! Just be cool with yourself.‚ÄĚ -Mika Brzezinski

I recently resolved to reduce the amount of airtime I give the word “sorry.” It’s been a difficult task–I usually don’t even realize when I say it, so I made sure to consciously avoid apologizing (unless, of course, I was in the wrong).¬†Someone knocks on the bathroom door while you’re using it? There’s no need to apologize for occupying it. Don’t want to get drinks with a guy who keeps badgering you? You shouldn’t be sorry for not wanting to waste your¬†time.

Here are some more things to stop apologizing for:

  1. Asking someone to clarify something.
  2. Someone else’s mistake…it’s not your fault if the barista at Starbucks gives you whole milk instead of skim, even if she makes it seem like it’s a major inconvenience.
  3. ¬†Declining an invitation somewhere. Say “no, thank you” instead.
  4. Leaving work early or calling out sick (as long as you’re actually sick).
  5. Not knowing the answer to something.
  6. Asking someone to move over on the train so they only take up one seat instead of two, so you can sit down.

blair waldorf gif from giphy.

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the latest, Uncategorized

anatomy of an acquaintance vs. a friend

I remember my mom using the term “acquaintance” a lot, mostly referring to my elementary school classmates who were loud and messy that she didn’t want me to have playdates with.¬†I feel like I’m in a really weird, transitional time in terms of my social life. My closest friends no longer live in NYC, and while I feel like I’m “friendly” with a lot of people, there¬†are definitely some differences between people you call acquaintances and those you call friends.

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1. It’s normal to have a conversation via email with an acquaintance, but you’re not even sure if you have you BFF’s current email address. That’s what texting is for, no?

2. Instagram comments = for friends (unless you’re drunk and feeling generous).

3. They’re your friend if you tag them in 4 dozen memes on Facebook everyday.

we-can-hang

4. They’re an acquaintance if you don’t feel comfortable talking about your finances with them.

5. They’re an acquaintance if you’d rather not sit next to them on your commute.

acquaintance

6. Drunk snapchatting is a sure sign of friendship.

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pin-spiration, Uncategorized

pin-spiration: new england

You may know that I’m a New England native–I grew up in a super small town outside of Boston, right on the beach. Newburyport is incredibly beautiful, and is the ultimate in quintessential, colonial New England. Cobblestone streets, beaches lined with hydrangea bushes, and houses built in the 18th century.

People were surprised that I wanted to go to school so far away, and as I continue to build my life in NYC it’s bittersweet to realize that my idea of “home” is changing. When I go visit my parents in Newburyport for the weekend, do I still say that I’m “going home?” It’s kind of funny that I still consider this place to be my home even though I only spend a handful of weeks there every year. There are a lot of things I miss about Massachusetts, and these pins are some of them–though I’ll never miss the snow.

all photos sourced from pinterest

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the latest, Uncategorized

sound bites

Things I found and enjoyed on the web this week.

The most relatable Vogue article I’ve ever read.

I’m not entirely sure what this website is, but it was too weird not to share.

Oh Joy!’s heartfelt post about her experience on September 11.

Stranger Pugs.

The best of every single thing (really) in NYC.

And as a bonus…a¬†boozy news story¬†I wrote ūüėČ

photo from entertainment.ie

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boyfriend, Uncategorized

anatomy of a finance douche

NYC is home to a specific breed of a (not so) gentleman I like to call the “finance douche.” Thanks to Wall Street and all of the major banks that call New York home, there are an incredible amount of guys who work “in finance” doing something that makes a ridiculous amount of money without needing to be especially smart. Here’s what makes them tick.

1. They (obviously) studied Finance in college.Or maybe Econ if they couldn’t get into the business program.¬†Probably a private university in the Northeast, maybe Georgetown or UVA.

andy cornell

2. Interned at Goldman Sachs or JP Morgan. AKA fucked around for a summer on someone else’s dime.

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3. Lives in Murray Hill, FiDI or the Upper East Side with at least two of his college buddies. The rest live in a 4-block radius. They still play beer pong on Sunday afternoons.

gossip girl

4. Their favorite topic of conversations are a) drunk frat shenanigans; b) Microsoft Excel; c) their alcoholic boss.

excel

5. Totes an Amex that has an annual fee higher than your rent.

tom money

6. Studied abroad in Dublin¬†or London and doesn’t remember any of it.

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7. Wears Chubbies in a non-ironic way.

frat guys

8. Smokes occasional cigarettes in an ironic way.

don draper smoking

Check our more NYC stereotypes here. 

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Uncategorized

pin-spiration: caffeine fix

I’m a caffeine fiend. I need no less than three cups of coffee every day to function (thank god for free office coffee), and also love tea–I’m obsessed with matcha, and love a good spicy chai latte.

I love coffee SO much that I will drink it black, or with lots of milk, or with a dash of sweetener, or with some pumpkin spice syrup. I also like¬†to mix coffee with almond milk, turmeric, and cinnamon for a flavorful health boost (I think these are trending as golden milk lattes). How do you take your daily cup of joe? And if you don’t drink coffee, how the eff do you do it?

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eat-a-city, Uncategorized

barcelona

One of my favorite cities in Europe is Barcelona–city-wide afternoon siestas, late-night dancing and cheap sangria? Three of my favorite things in a beautiful city on the beach. When I was deciding where to study abroad, Barca was the only other place I seriously considered besides Amsterdam–and though you probably know I couldn’t be happier with my choice, I definitely wish I had more than 48 hours in this zesty Spanish city.

Among other things, Spain is famous for tapas and paella. On the first afternoon, I was exhausted from dealing with a delayed flight, so my friend and I stumbled to a bustling restaurant that seemed pretty reasonable. We ordered a variety of small plates, like papas bravas and pan con tomate, and some tasty sangria. This meal would be less than memorable if I hadn’t been so damn hungry.barcelona

Spain was one of the places I went in Europe that had a Dunkin Donuts–happy selfies commenced along with an iced latte and sugar-loaded donut. There was one in the train station by Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia, which we only admired from the outside. One of my only regrets from my adventures abroad is not shelling out the 20 euros for admission into the cathedral.

The weather was incredible when I was there, and¬†we spent a lot of time wandering around the historic district. We went to La Boqueria, a large, incredibly crowded food market, famous for quality Iberico and fresh fruit. We strolled along La Rambla and settled on a place to get paella–definitely got ripped off trying to find authentic food in such a touristy area, but we were dying to sit down and have something cold to drink (more sangria). The supermarket we went to later to get snacks was selling paella for 2 euros a serving. Go figure.

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After a much needed siesta, I forced my travel buddy to rally so we could hit the clubs. The nightlife in Barcelona is right on the beach, and is unlike anything I’ve experienced. The club scene in New York¬†is a game all it’s own, but in Barca, it was come one, come all. Everyone’s there for dancing and good times–and tequila shots.

The next morning, we took a hungover stroll to Park Guell, another Gaudi site that was a little gentler on our wallets–and in walking distance of our Air Bnb. It was super hot that day, and an uphill walk to the park, so we stopped for some slushy drinks.

So, when should I go back?

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the latest, Uncategorized

excuses for canceling plans

I can’t say if I’ve used any or all of these, but when I’m feeling anti-social it’s always good to have an excuse stored in the back of my brain. Here are some of my best (?) ideas for getting out of an awkward blind date, a party for a co-worker you’ve never spoken to or 10am brunch when you’re hungover.

nick miller

1. You’re super sore from Pure Barre.

2. You forgot you promised your roommate you’d go to dinner with her for her birthday.

3. You have a Skype interview with a company in China (time differences, man).

4. It’s your time of the month.

5. You’re locked out of your apartment.

6. Your wallet got stolen and you only have $3.91 in loose change.

7. You have to stay home to let the cable guy in.

ilana

8. Damn, you JUST ordered Thai food on Seamless.

9. The new Frank Ocean album is making you cry.

10. You ate too many free bagels at work and none of your going-out clothes fit.

Here’s to a Friday¬†night in!

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the latest, Uncategorized

last week’s links

I thought I’d share some posts from other blogs and lifestyle websites that I particularly enjoyed reading last week and this week. These links are funny bits from the web that I happened to stumble upon, as well as some recent posts from my favorite sites–I scroll through¬†Man Repeller and R29 almost everyday on my lunch break, and have been following them on Insta forever.

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1. “Only in New York” stories from Man Repeller.

2. This recipe for Come Fuck Me pasta, c/o Refinery29. (Will probably make this for myself this weekend, tbh.)

3. An insightful post from Cupcakes and Cashmere, one of the blogs that has inspired me since I was in high school. I love how Emily has branched out her editorial team to include younger/non-parents/unmarried women who are more relatable for my demographic.

4. Any Broad City fans?

5. Pete Wells’s review of my least favorite Food Network star’s Times Square restaurant.

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pin-spiration, Uncategorized

long live the mule!

This semi-pinspiration post is dedicated to my all-time favorite shoe: the mule. As someone who is just over 5 feet tall, I’m always looking for shoes that give me a little extra height without being over-the-top. I bought a pair of black mules about a year and a half ago (does that make me a trendsetter?) because I loved the manageable heel and retro vibe…plus they were on sale at H&M.

The chunky, reasonable heel height on these shoes makes them comfortable enough to wear all day, and the style is chic enough to wear for date-night. I’m currently lusting after these Marais sandals, and this Man Repeller feature seriously made me consider investing in a pair. Here are some of my other favorite mules this season:

  1. These Loeffler Randall slides. (Thanks for the inspo, Oh Joy!)
  2. These suede Jeffrey Campbell beauties.
  3. These Steve Madden mules that are straight out of Jackie Burkhart’s closet.
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Uncategorized

things that make me feel like an adult vs. things that make me feel 5

As I continue to live more independently, I’ve been noticing that certain parts of my lifestyle reflect that of a toddler, and others reflect my attempts to be a functioning adult. Whether it’s my diet or how I spend my limited free time, it’s making me feel like a hot mess.

child at heart

exhibit no.1: I regularly pack PB&J for lunch (though I do this in an attempt to be mature and not drop $10 on a salad).

exhibit no.2: Whenever I go home, I bring a bag of laundry with me. Number one on my NYC apartment wish list? In-unit washer and dryer.

exhibit no.3: My favorite dinner is Kraft mac & cheese and a diet Coke. I’ll probably die at 50.

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vs. adult AF

exhibit no.1: My work-out of choice is cycling class. I was eating frozen yogurt outside my spin studio the other day and felt majorly like a yoga mom. Didn’t hate it.

exhibit no.2: I go to bed at 10pm. I’m just not myself without ten hours of sleep.

exhibit no.3: I have a job! Something about spending the majority of your time in an office just makes me feel like a real person.

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the latest, Uncategorized

when you realize you’re liz lemon AF

I recently re-watched 30 Rock (hit me with your Netflix suggestions) and got kind of freaked out by how much I related to Liz Lemon. I started watching this show when I was in high school, when I first started appreciating quality television. For the past few months I feel like all I’ve done is work, eat and sleep, basically mirroring Lemon’s life as a head writer for TGS. Here are 7 reasons¬†why¬†we’re literally the same person.

1. We both have our priorities straight.

mozz sticks

2. We’re both known for our infamous eye roll.

liz lemon eye roll

3. We’re both terrible at comforting our friends.

crying

4. We exercise for the same reason…to eat more.

liz lemon exercise

5. Neither of us has actually ever had a successful interaction with a man.

interaction

6. We both eat cheese after dark. Alone. While watching Netflix. Sometimes in bed.

night cheese

7. We started wearing more and going out less.

yes to

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Uncategorized

pin-spiration: cake

This past weekend, I went home to Massachusetts for a short visit. Even though NYC and Boston are relatively close, the total round-trip travel time is around ten hours, exhausting for¬†a two-night trip. There are always so many things I want to squeeze in during these short visits, whether it’s trying to eat at all my favorite restaurants, see all my friends, go to the mall and Target (best parts of the suburbs), and (my favorite) bake or cook something with my mom.

I love to cook, and don’t get to do it very often anymore. The kitchen in my current apartment is depressingly small, and the thought of turning on the oven in this hot weather isn’t super appealing. So this past weekend, I made crab cakes for dinner with my mom (gotta love New England seafood) and baked a zucchini bread. Even though none of these feats were as impressive as the desserts that populate my Pinterest boards, they were both pretty damn good.

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Uncategorized

can’t stop, won’t stop (thinking)

One of my earliest and most meaningful memories is from a school assembly I went to as a kindergarten student. I have no idea what the premise was for gathering a group of 5-12 year olds in the school’s gymnasium, but I clearly remember one woman introducing another–I couldn’t tell you whether they were firefighters giving a safety presentation or teachers being presented with awards, but the way this woman was introduced *literally* impacted my life. She was presented to myself and my fidgety, cross-legged sitting classmates as someone whose brain never shuts off, someone who is constantly thinking.

For some reason, this struck a chord with five-year-old me. I wanted to be the kind of person who was always thinking, the kind of person who woke up in the middle of the night with a great idea and kept a notepad on their¬†nightstand to record those inconvenient moments of brilliance. Whether or not my brain works this way because of this assembly, I’ll never know, but it¬†literally never shuts off. I’m not saying I’m a genius because I’m definitely not, but I am constantly thinking, and it’s actually super annoying.

Most of the ideas I have for posts on this blog come from random thoughts I have while binge-watching Family Guy at 2am or staring at my ceiling, sleeplessness c/o caffeine overdoses and insomnia. When I have new ideas for posts, I have to write a note to myself on my phone–plenty of times, I told myself I’d remember the next morning, but sure enough, those thoughts were lost to the void. Of course, quite often when I later look at the notes I typed when I was half-asleep, they’re incoherent and a little amusing.

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I like to tell prospective employers that I’m the kind of person who’s never not working–and it’s true. I may work 9-5 in an office everyday, but when I’m not freezing to death at my desk I’m pitching and writing¬†freelance pieces or pouring my heart into this blog. My brain is also never not working, though not always productively. I’m constantly thinking about the future, overthinking the past, and under-thinking how much sleep I need.

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boyfriend, Uncategorized

why i deleted tinder

I’ve blogged quite a bit in the past about my experience using Tinder (and even checking out Bumble, Match.com, and some other sites). Lately, I have been feeling really “over” the idea of dating, especially via mobile app. Since getting a real job and becoming more of an adult, I’ve decided to start investing more in myself–whether it’s pursuing creative pursuits (like this one) or making time for things that are important to me.

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When I first downloaded Tinder, it was little more than a game. Of course, there was that lurking, secret desire that I’d find my soulmate through a¬†silly app, but that hope has pretty much been dashed. My dating experience over the past two years has been filled with a lot of first dates, a lot of mixed signals, and ultimately, a lot of my time, energy, and emotions being wasted. I have no interest in waiting around for my phone to buzz or wondering if I said the wrong thing or acted the wrong way.

I recently saw a¬†post on Man Repeller¬†that really just hit home for me. “We need a romance revolution. No more games, no more guessing and no more wondering. We should all say how we feel, and not be afraid to say, ‚ÄúI love you.‚ÄĚ Let‚Äôs commit to relationships! And treat each other equally.” Amen, Brisa Gomez. In the meantime, the swiping and super-liking are on hold, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be just fine.

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eat-a-city, Uncategorized

amsterdam

I could literally talk about Amsterdam forever…and since it’s part of the eat-a-city series, I’m going to! When I originally thought of this series, my idea was more “city in a grocery bag.” But since a lot of the places I’ve travelled to were very short visits, I decided to do more of a food diary…though A’dam is kind of an exception considering I lived, grocery shopped and cooked there.

This blog post is a love letter of sorts to Albert Heijn, the most perfect grocery store in all the world. One of the best parts of living in Amsterdam was the incredibly cheap groceries–they were cheap by American suburban standards, and prices were drastically lower compared to Gristedes/Morton Williams/Fine Fare/every subpar supermarket in NYC. I’m talking loaves of bread for 65 cents, Dutch cheese for a dollar, and insanely delicious salads for $4…granted, the groceries were priced in euros, but the conversion rate was very close to 1:1 when I was there.

dutch

One of my favorite products at AH was the guacamole kits they had in their produce section–it cost just under $3 for two avocados, a lime, a tomato, a chili pepper, garlic, and shallots, a.k.a. everything you need to make your own guac. For perspective, I paid $2.29 for a single avocado at the Tribeca Whole Foods yesterday.

Two very typical Dutch treats that I came to love were stroopwafels and hagelslag. Stroopwafels are wafer-thin waffle cookies sandwiched with a sticky, caramel-like syrup. You could buy a package of 12 for around $1 at the store, but¬†lots of street vendors sell homemade ones the size of your face, hot off the griddle. Hagelslag are like quality chocolate sprinkles–sprinkled on buttered bread is a standard breakfast item in this beautiful country.

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One of my favorite things to eat in Amsterdam was a veggie burger from a little¬†restaurant called Burgerlijk. Wandering around in a hungry daze, I stumbled upon this gem when my friends were visiting over their spring break. I can be particular about veggie burgers…and I’m not sure what this one was made of, but it was incredible. Like, I think about it way too much. The whole thing is super customizable–lots of different cheeses, toppings, and sauces, and their fries are also incredible. I took my meat-eating parents here when they came to visit, and they were impressed with the regular beef burgers.

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I also went to another incredible restaurant when my folks were in town (read: free dinner) called De Vergulden Eenhorn. It’s on the outskirts of the city in a restored farmhouse–honestly as “me” as it gets–and they have just a handful of items on their menu, all of which are exceptional. I always think it’s better for a restaurant to have four entrees that they do really well, rather than ten that are just ok. We went twice because it was so damn good, and I had cauliflower soup, barley risotto, and sea bass. The restaurant makes their own bread, aioli, and hummus, which were also delicious.

found my favorite restaurant. #amsterdam #succulents #local #farmtotable

A post shared by Allison Russo (@nycismyboyfriend) on

What are your favorite Amsterdam eats?

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pin-spiration, Uncategorized

pin-spiration: cauliflower

I am obsessed with cauliflower. I love vegetables in general, and never really ate cauliflower growing up–unless it was served steamed (read: bland AF) at a relative’s house. Cauliflower turned my life around when I went on this clean eating challenge after coming home from my booze-filled second year of college. One of the meals was roasted cauliflower with lentils, and man oh man, that was life changing. Cauliflower takes on a whole new personality when you toss it in olive oil, S+P and garlic and pop it in the oven for 40 minutes–smoky, caramelized, and nutty flavor develops in this incredibly bland vegetable.¬†Now, I’ll regularly roast an entire head of cauliflower¬†and just eat the whole thing for dinner.

The other great thing about this veggie (besides being super healthy) is how versatile it is. I know people who are gluten-free that turn cauliflower into pizza crust and breadsticks, and I’m a die-hard fan of cauliflower soup. My go-to non-recipe is to puree roasted cauliflower with vegetable stock, saut√©ed garlic and onion, and a spoonful of milk for a ridiculously creamy concoction. Check out more of my fave recipes on Pinterest.

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Uncategorized

8 things millennials celebrate

Going to the library instead of just using the Internet to write a paper, texting thank-you notes instead of handwriting them, and spending $5 on a latte everyday instead of making your own coffee are typical millennial behaviors. So when you actually stop being lazy, you gotta celebrate…even the smallest things are victories for my lazy AF generation.

1. Going to the gym.

amy schumer

2. Not opening a tab at the bar (or just remembering to close your tab).

bar tab

3. Packing a lunch for work. #FrugalAF

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4. Not taking an uber home.

subway

5. Doing laundry.

laundry

6. Making dinner instead of ordering seamless.

kardashian pizza

7. Taking your make-up off before bed.

makeup

8. Wearing pants with a zipper.

pants

What’s your favorite chore to celebrate?

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