Freckles in April: October 2013

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

In Case You Missed It

Here are all my Babble posts from this month!

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Monday, October 21, 2013

Mom Jeans

Shirt: OASAP c/o, Gap Jeans (old), Minnetonka moccasins (via Hautelook)

I can't bring myself to put on my skinny jeans. This isn't a self-image issue, it's a "my legs have been free as birds all summer and they don't want to feel like sausages" issue. I love the way skinnies look but can't stand the way my legs feel all restricted. This ancient pair of semi-flairs from Gap are rather unflattering but my legs can breathe and right now that's all that matters.

Saggy knees and butt, FTW!
In other news, I FINALLY got myself a new pair of moccasins. My Payless pair was looking very very sad so I took advantage of a HauteLook deal last week and snagged myself some Minnetonkas. We are still in the breaking-in period so I will let you know how I like them!

AND! Help a sister out? I'm writing a post for Babble about dressing up your car for Halloween. And it's going up WEDNESDAY. As in, less than 48 hours from now. So, do you happen to have a pic of your car all decked out for Halloween? Maybe for trunk-or-treat or a party? Send it my way! I'd love to feature it. Email it on over to Kayla@frecklesinapril.com. I'll give you credit, of course, and a link to your blog if you so desire.

Gracias and happy Monday.


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Books for Africa

I know it's still a couple months away but I've got Christmas on the brain. I'm the type who likes to get all my gifts bought early so I can just enjoy the season. As I was pondering gifts I realized that I don't particularly want anything this year. I have a couple small part time jobs that give me a little fun money to spend on whatever stupid thing catches my fancy so, really, I'm set.

I asked Twitter if anyone could recommend a charity that they know uses funds responsibly. Definitely RA directed me to Charity Navigator and that's how I found Books for Africa.

A little backstory-

A little anthropological field trip


In 2005 I took a class on healthcare in Africa as part of my anthropology major. The end goal of the class was to travel to Ghana over the summer and complete a research project relating to healthcare. I spent the semester researching my little heart out (my project centered on care and therapy practices available for children with birth defects). But, as the summer and our departure date approached, things started falling apart.

The grant paperwork I'd spent hours on went missing. I was denied funding that should have been an easy approval. I got a speeding ticket that drained my bank account. My research hit a wall. A couple weeks before the end of the semester I realized there was no way I could afford the trip. I threw my arms in the air and said, "FINE. I'm going home for the summer instead." I cried a little, gave my wonderful professor a lame excuse that I'm sure left him scratching his head, and packed my bags.

A few weeks after arriving in Mesa I met Aaron.

Clearly God knew what He was doing but after spending so much time focusing on the children of Ghana I couldn't help but feel a kinship. I've never stepped foot in Ghana but all these years later they still feel like my people.


Over a YEAR ago this pastor in Ghana set a goal of $13,000 for books for the children in his community. They're only 9% toward their goal. I'm a lifelong, passionate reader and seeing that sad little progress bar turned on a huge lightbulb over my head. THIS is what I want for Christmas.

Would you help me push them a little closer to their goal? I'd love to see them at 18% by Christmas. It's small, but it's so much better than where they're at now!

To donate, click this link. Then, click on Ghana. It's that little orange one.



Click the "Donate Now" button.


Then fill out your information. It took me less than 3 minutes. The minimum donation is $5, which goes further than you'd think!

Books For Africa is a simple idea, but its impact is transformative. For us, literacy is quite simply the bridge from misery to hope.
Kofi Annan, former U.N. Secretary-General

Monday, October 14, 2013

Drama Club


Since I've already outed myself as a fan of KDrama, then it should probably come as no surprise that I am now WRITING about KDrama. Coco of KDrama Fighting recently asked if Erica and I would be interested in participating in Drama Fever's Drama Club where a group of bloggers write reviews about the episodes from the week.

Erica and I had a little freakout over text message and then asked Coco to submit our names. We were THRILLED when they asked us to not only do Drama Club, but to do Drama Club for HEIRS, which is a pretty big deal in the KDrama world because of Lee Min Ho. That name probably means nothing to you but if you go watch City Hunter on Netflix you'll understand.

The first 2 episodes of Heirs were released on Wednesday and Thursday and my review post went up on Saturday. SO, in the event that KDrama sounds sort of intriguing, here's your chance to jump on in! Watch the first 2 eps over at Drama Fever then read my review (and Erica's! and Vivi's!). And then we can discuss.

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I also write for Babble! Here's what's new:

What Aaron thinks of my date night outfits and what he WISHES I wore. Read it.

Do you love Grace? I love Grace. And I interviewed her about her style! Read it.

A personal style post on dressing for that weird transition time of year that's half warm half chilly. Read it.

OR, subscribe to my once-weekly Babble emails! Never miss a post!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Bits and Pieces

Dress c/o eShakti, booties from Charlotte Russe, necklace from church stuff


1. The huge downside of watching shows on Netflix is that I'm like I AM FILLED WITH FEELINGS ABOUT THIS AND I MUST DISCUSS THEM WITH SOMEONE and everyone else is like, "Eh. I think I had those feelings like 5 years ago when the show originally aired." And then I explode.




 2.  eShakti sent me this dress. As I have come to expect from them, it is absolutely fantastic. Soft, substantial jersey, a perfect fit, and gorgeous details. This is why I keep sending them my money (darn them). I've been a slow adopter to the hi-lo trend since I think it's rarely done well but, on this dress, I love it.

3. Aaron has been watching Walking Dead lately. I saw some .gifs from Walking Dead a couple weeks ago and got nightmares. FROM .GIFS. Aaron has obviously been watching alone.



4. Influenster sent me a Colgate SlimSoft toothbrush to try out a few weeks ago and I have become weirdly passionate about it. I'm not even required to blog about it but I'm doing it anyway because I have had a really hard time finding a toothbrush I love. So if you are worried about your gums because your toothbrush totally abuses them, give a SlimSoft a try.

5. I'm super intrigued by this cleansing conditioner I read about a couple weeks ago. Has anyone tried it? Will I look like a greaseball for ever and ever?

6. The most casual revolution ever. If you're a Les Mis fan I hope you will join with me in thinking this is hilarious. That last line. I die every time.

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I also write for Babble! Here's what I've written lately:

Fall Transition Outfits: 6 Looks That Go from Warm, Sunny Days to Chilly Fall Nights
Style Inspiration We Can Steal from Oktoberfest
Best Flash Sale Sites for Affordable Fashion

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

In Which My Head Nearly Explodes



A few weeks ago Erica sent me a message on gchat- "Want to hear something so, so sad?" She then forwarded me an email that Spencer had sent out to all her friends inviting them to a surprise party on her birthday. Unfortunately, she accidentally saw the email (entitled something like ERICA'S SURPRISE BIRTHDAY PARTY, so it was a little hard to miss) and totally ruined the surprise for herself and she was totally heartbroken.

A little voice in my head said, "Hey, YOU could be her surprise party..."

Erica and I moved on to talking about shoes but I promptly sent Janssen a message asking which airport is closest to Erica's apartment and told her I was thinking about flying out to surprise Erica for her birthday. Janssen replied, "I wonder if I could make it..." to which I responded WE HAVE TO DO THIS.

My head almost exploded from excitement and the stress of secret keeping for those 3 weeks. Between texts and gchat I am in near constant contact with Erica and it took every ounce of self control I possess to NOT tell her. Fortunately, I am also in constant contact with Janssen so she got the nonstop texts from me about how excited I was.



See, I've never actually been to New York. Or met Erica. I mean, yes, we talk constantly but ours is a friendship built on the internetz and we've never had a face-to-face meeting. 

Well, we've met now!

Erica's husband, Spencer, is the best. When an internet stranger emailed and asked if she could stay for a weekend he said, "Sure!" He told Erica he had some things planned for the weekend after her birthday so she needed to not make any plans. And then he gave her ZERO details, despite her bugging. At one point Erica texted me that Spencer was in "rare, RARE form" because this was SO unlike him. Even more points in his favor: he cleaned the apartment AND made dinner in preparation for our arrival, since Erica was clueless. That Spencer. He's a good one.

Unsurprisingly, it was just about the best weekend ever. Erica was shocked. SHOCKED. Like, clutching her phone in the lobby of her apartment building saying, "oh my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh" over and over for AGES while I awkwardly stood there in a birthday hat with my hands up in "Surprise!" position. She spent the next hour poking me to make sure I wasn't some kind of crazy advanced hologram. Janssen was Surprise Part Two a few hours behind me and Erica's reaction was just as amazing.

Surreptitiously texting Janssen under the table while waiting for her to arrive.


And, of course, there are pictures. Many of them.

I was super brave and took public transportation from the airport BY MYSELF. Where is my badge of honor?
Once Erica recovered, we took a little walk to the reservoir near her apartment.

It boggles my mind that people are this talented.

Walking the Highline.

Doughnut Plant. Will never look at grocery store doughnuts the same way again.

Clockwise from top left: creme brulee (everyone's fav), raspberry, tres leches


Lunch with our lovely Babble editors!

My lovely (petite!) editor, Lindsay.

The Babble offices
We couldn't NOT go to Tiffany.

Taking Janssen's outfit photos in Soho. This is why we need to be neighbors.

We didn't get a cronut but we DID use their bathroom.

Babes.

I had to. For the sake of comparison, you know? We also got a creme brulee cookie.

This was the day we walked (no joke) 10 miles. We are iron women.
Sunset over the Hudson. I need to move here.


I drank the New York kool-aid. Hard.

We met up with Hediyeh, who I met freshman year of college and now knows Erica and Spencer in NY. It's such a small world.

Morning view of the reservoir.

A morning walk in Central Park

I can't say for certain but this was possibly the best thing I ate while I was there. Liege waffle with speculoos ice cream.

Shakespeare Garden (I believe?)

From Belvedere Castle



I have now had Laduree in both Paris AND New York. Still think the salted caramel is the cat's pajamas.


Lunch with friends from freshman year at Cafe Sabarsky. German food! New to me!

Central Park killed me.




And I'm dead.
We made a trip to the Natural History Museum where I took a bunch of pics for my boys. They thought this one was hilarious.


Lincoln Center


Maybe my favorite part of the whole trip...standing under the Brooklyn Bridge and looking toward Manhattan was absolutely drop-dead magically amazing.


The anthropology major in me LOVED the Met.


More public transportation!


We even caught a parade on 5th Ave!

30 Rock!


Caught a fantastic exhibit on children's literature at the New York Public Library.

The original Winnie the Pooh and friends. We were a liiiittle bit teary over this one.



Buildings disappearing into the fog

The flatiron building!!








Janssen and I kept saying this weekend couldn't have gone better. Getting there and surprising Erica went SO well. The food was SO good. The weather was ridiculously nice. We walked through so many AWESOME places (also, Erica mapped it and we almost walked a marathon). We had SO much fun together!

After Aaron heard about all the amazing things I ate he was ALL about going to New York with me, so now I have to go back. Darn. 
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