Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Month in Review: January 2015

How has the New Year been treating you? Here's what is looks like one month in on NFD!

New Outfits
January Collage

New Mail
This month's addition to the letter writing series was How to Write an Apology Letter. Meanwhile, I also shared a movie themed stationary wishlist (which would go perfectly with any of the outfits shown January's Cinema Style), and reviewed the latest microcollections from Popbasic. Remember, Popbasic mails lovely new clothes to your door!

New Plans
On the blog, much of January was devoted to sharing a travel log of our trip to Los Angeles over the winter break. You can see all our adventures here. Once we got back to chilly Wyoming though, it has been a whirlwind month for getting back into the classroom and working. It only seemed natural then to share a trend I'd started to notice when it came to my work wear outfits.

Other than that, for The Boy and I, it has been promises to eat healthier, catching up on family and waiting out the winter armed with tea and books. How has the start of 2015 been treating you?

New Finds
Texts from Sense and Sensibility
How to fall in love with anyone
Remember Desk Set? Here are the type of questions they were asked
The universe is even bigger than imagined.
Sammi looks like she stepped out of a fairytale, while Suzanne takes on a preppy fun look
Move over Barbie- Africa has some royal competition for you!
History in living color
Jessica shares her thoughts on selfies. What are yours?
Fashion trends of last century
Ever wonder what Polyjuice potion makes? Butterbeer? Wonder no more!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Work Outfits

Because I mostly shoot outfit posts on the weekends, it's come to my attention that you don't generally get to see what I wear to work. In fact, you can count the number of times  work wear's shown up on NFD on less than ten fingers (you can see them: here, hereherehere, here and here). This is entirely Too Bad, because 1) there are not a lot of blogs out there that show stylish professional outfits and 2) I love stylish, professional outfits. So, thought I'd change that and share with you a week's worth of What I Wore to Work.
Professional outfits, hepburn, work clothing, teacher outfits,
This past spring, I asked whether any of you subscribed to the idea of a Beauty Uniform. For the uniniatied think of a uniform as a signature style. Basically, your wardrobe utlizes similar pieces and/or colors creating a visual cohesive set of looks. Back in March, I'd said I wasn't quite ready for that, but the funny thing is, not quite a year later, and I find it has happened all on its own.

And I love it.

Some of it is simply practicality. A cigarette pant answers all my needs of staying warm even though I'm outside for longish periods every day (like, as recess and things); and  that I might need to run, jump, kneel, or worse, sit cross-legged on the floor. Plus, who doesn't like feeling like they're Audrey Hepburn? The limited color scheme means most things match with everything else. Having the "uniform" means I sort of know right away what I like, what will work with everything else in my closet when shopping. Currently this work signature style feels sort of tomboy meets Hepburn meets graphic design. I'm actually thinking of developing/paring down to a capsule closet for work (though I'll still admit that I'm looking forward for warmer weather to be able to throw in the occasional skirt too). Have any of you every tried either a beauty uniform or a capsule wardrobe?
Work Outfits

P.S. This also means, I am completely enamored of pants lately, which is probably good, because I think this shows one more pair or so wouldn't go amiss. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Letter Writing: Letter of Apology

Nobody's perfect (or pobody's nerfect as an acquaintance of mine likes to say). It can be awkward to admit this, but people screw up. When it is you screwing up, an apology is needed, and that can be hard. While every situation is different, you might want to consider writing an apology letter to repair things. 

Obviously, this is more appropriate in some cases than others- a minor disagreement might be put to rights with a phone call, and other times an in-person apology is best. But if you are apologizing for a mistake in a business capacity; or if in your personal life there is a long-standing issue to resolve; or you have hurt someone emotionally- a letter may add more weight to convey your sincerity. 

As with any apology, the sooner it is shared, the better. That said, don't dash off an apology unthinkingly. Take your time to write thoughtfully, choose your words carefully, and consider the relationship between you and who you are writing to when setting the tone. 

For an apology to a group of people, or an apology related to your professional work, type the letter and use a business letter format. Be concise and start right off with saying you are apologizing and what for. Explain, as far as you can, what went wrong. Share what you will specifically be doing to rectify the situation. If you are writing about a debt you are late in repaying be especially brief, and share the timeline it will take for you to repay that debt. 

When apologizing to someone with whom you have a personal relationship with, consider handwriting your letter. It adds a more personal touch that will better convey the effort and thought you put into the apology . Start your letter off by stating what the situation is; you don't need to go into a ton of detail as the person you writing to is part of the situation and knows. However, by establishing what has happened, you are setting up the context for your apology. When you apologize say what for specifically. If you don't; it sounds a bit insincere, as if you don't know what you did wrong, and if you don't know what you did wrong there is no reason for the other person(s) to think you won't do those same hurtful actions again. If you feel that both you and the other party or parties are to blame, this is not the time to emphasize that point. Say you would like to take responsibility for your own part in this situation without mentioning the other person's or people's role(s). Now is the time to focus on your actions and not others' actions; focusing on others makes it sound like there were mitigating circumstances and you acted as you did for reasons beyond your control. If you are apologizing, you must take ownership of those actions, even if there was no intent to hurt the other party.   

In most cases, after you have apologized, you should also offer up what you will do to change that situation. How will you act in the future ("I will try to be more considerate of your feelings," "I will make and effort to call if I will be late")? You may also want to ask whether there is something you can do to help repair the damage that has been done. It is a good idea to also state a specific action you will do- maybe ask to meet for coffee so you can apologize in person, for example- and follow through on it. Even if you have asked them for ideas on what you can do, people may be reluctant to take you up on the offer and your relationship may not get rebuilt; if the other party sees you following through on that specified action, they are more likely to realize you are serious in your commitment to repair a damaged relationship. 

Depending on the situation, you may also want to send a gift along with the apology letter. This is can be very effective in helping ton show your feelings, but you do walk a fine line with gift giving, for several reasons. First, always take into consideration your past and current relationship with the other party or parties. Don't send a stuffed bear to your ex;  you don't have that level of intimacy any more. You also want to be careful that your gift does not make it look as if you are trying to buy someone's forgiveness or love. However, a bouquet of flowers along with an apology to your friend after you stood her up for lunch is a way to communicate she is a valued person to you. Your own judgement and discretion should guide you in this area. 

Have you ever had to write an apology letter? What were the results. Please feel free to share below as encouragement and advice for any who may be struggling to write one right now. 

Further Reading:


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

What I Wore: Frozen Over

popbasic, lucky, blue shirt, olive sweater, olive, blue,

popbasic, silk shirt, olive sweater, blue shirt, scarf, frozen, What I Wore: Sweater (Zara's), Shirt (Popbasic; Similar Here), Jeans (Lucky Brand), Boots (Similar Here), Necklace (Similar Here)

....And after a week in sunny California, it was back to this. I think the high the day we got back was supposed to be nine, and that turned out to be wishful thinking.  Instead, it never even cracked zero that day. Oddly enough though, most of this outfit originates from California. The silk shirt is, of course, this one from Popbasic,  but the jeans and the sweater were both purchases from this most recent trip. A sweater is a little like brining the warmer temperatures with you, right? 

Well, I guess as compensation, snow and even ice can look pretty from time to time- such as here. The reservoir has begun to freeze over. The cool blues, cold temperatures, and silence set an eerie tone; to counteract it was the rich but subtle color story of this outfit. I'm in love! The deep tones make me feel cozy instead of cold. Along with  drinking tea and read mystery novels: It's the ultimate cozy situation. 

What are your "remedies" for fighting the winter blues? 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Dog Eared Page: How the Camel Got His Hump

Just so Stories, Rudyard Kipling, never fully dressed, withoutastyle, dog eared page,

In the beginning of years, when the world was so new-and-all, and the Animals were just beginning to work for Man, there was a Camel, and he lived in the middle of a Howling Desert because he did not want to work; and besides, he was a Howler himself. So he ate sticks and thorns and tamarisks and milkweed and prickles, most 'scruciating idle; and when anybody spoke to him he said 'Humph!' Just 'Humph!' and no more.

- "How the Camel Got His Hump" from the Just-So Stories by Rudyard Kipling

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