three favorites: march 17, 2017

March 27, 2017


My mother always used to ask us what our 'three favorites' were on our way home from a holiday or vacation. I'm trying to see every week of my life with gratitude, so I am using my mother's question to guide my weekly reflection. Here are my three favorites from my week, big or small. 

1. Green tea, especially the Harney and Sons one with coconut and lemongrass. I love the change from winter to spring. It's so optimistic to be able to switch from winter coats to spring coats, and from dark coffee to light teas and milky cold brews. This tea comes in such a beautiful tin, and has a hint of something tropical. It's great.

2. Henna. For a fundraiser, my school's Muslim Student Association was giving henna tattoos after school, and I got a flower that snaked across my forearm and the back of my hand. I am thankful for my thoughtful, brave students who share their culture with others, even during times of uncertainty and fear.

3. A clean house. We are getting our house appraised, and the feeling of going through things that hadn't been touched in years was worth the hassle of scrubbing and sorting.

What are you loving this week?


styling: pop of red from Arc's Value Village

March 26, 2017

Here is a collection of my three typical looks, styled with pieces from Arc's Value Village. I've got a little date night, a little casual weekend, and a little classroom outfit action coming your way.


D A T E    N I G H T :   French Connection dress (10.99) and red purse (3.49) from Arc's Value Village / vintage brooches from my grandmothers / SUGARFIX by Bauble Bar earrings / ankle strap flats from Gap


C A S U A L :   bandana (1.09), Land's End striped shirt (7.99) and Gap jeans (6.99) from Arc's Value Village / sneakers from Target

C L A S S R O O M :   vintage blazer / Gap dress (6.99) from Arc's Value Village / clogs from Swedish Hasbeens

What are your favorite items to find at the thrift store?

my tips for successful thrift shopping

items clockwise: metal bin (1.49), red purse (3.49), bandana (1.09), metallic candle votive (1.49), Sriracha mug (1.49), Uglies (1.49) and Twilight (2.49). 

I'm posting to Arc's Value Village's Instagram (@thriftstylist) today as the #VillagerforaDay. They are a local chain of thrift stores in Minnesota, and my favorite location is the one in Richfield. They are a nonprofit which works to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.

I've loved thrifting ever since I was little and my mom bought me a pair of jeans embroidered with daisies from a thrift store, and since high school my friends have wondered how I find such gems while thrifting. (Not to brag or anything, but I really am a great thrifter.) So, without further ado, here are some tips for having a successful thrifting trip.

1. Look through more than you think you should, especially when it comes to clothes. Check sizing above and below your size, because you never know when a vintage find will defy modern vanity sizing, or which oversize shirt will drape just right on you. Touch the fabrics, and see if something surprises you; click through the hangers on just about everything.

2. Pay attention to color. I stick loosely to a color palette in my wardrobe, which has made my thrift shopping more effective. I look for red, pink, blue, and neutrals. I especially like black and white patterned pieces, which I can often find while thrifting. I feel more focused, and I am happier with my closet as a result of (mostly) sticking to a set of colors.

3. Check the tags. Most of my best finds from the thrift store come from brands that I love already. I especially get excited when I find J. Crew, LOFT, GAP, or Banana Republic in the racks, because I know I like their style and sizing. I also check tags to make sure that I can wash my finds; I usually try to avoid "dry clean only" items, because odds are I will forget and ruin them in the wash.

4. Have a thrift bucket list, and keep an eye out for it. I keep in mind new trends or styles that I would like to try but don't want to spend a lot of money on. Some things that I have wanted and found on my most recent trip to Arc's: a red dress, a red cross body bag, and some metallic details for my house. I still have my eyes peeled for a menswear inspired wool coat, another pair of mom jeans, and a leather mini backpack.

three favorites: march 20, 2016

March 20, 2017


My mother always used to ask us what our 'three favorites' were on our way home from a holiday or vacation. I'm trying to see every week of my life with gratitude, so I am using my mother's question to guide my weekly reflection. Here are my three favorites from my week, big or small. 

1. Elnett Hairspray. I love this stuff. It's a fine mist, unscented, and a can lasts forever. I appreciate that this can hold my pixie in place instead of flopping all over.

2. Talking with students. I had two really nice conversations with students today that were really renewing, whether it was talking about poetry or personal struggles. It's a reminder that the spring is a time to witness planted seeds of trust bloom.

3. Dungeons and Dragons. I've been working hard to include more time in my week to see friends and set a routine again. My routine has come to include grading with friends at a coffee shop on Sunday, which is so renewing, and playing Dungeons and Dragons Sunday evenings. It's so nerdy, but it is so fun to create a story of adventure and trials with a small community of people. I didn't know what the game would be like, but it takes so much imagination, which I love. I am buying my own set of dice.

What are you loving this week?

three favorites: march 14, 2017

March 14, 2017

Sephora Cream Lipstain in Always Red

What I am loving this week:

1. Skam. I watched all the seasons of this Norwegian teen drama in about two days a little while ago. If you poke around the internet you can find all three seasons with fan created English subtitles. The styling and the supportive friendships are tied for my favorite parts of the show. The characters dress in the loveliest coats, hats, and scarfs, plus they are there for each other when drama strikes.

2. Sephora Cream Lip Stain. This matte liquid lipstick has been my favorite for a while. I love the color Always Red / 01 (pictured above), which is a straight up neutral red, not too cool or warm. While I was watching Skam, I loved the dark red lip that one of my favorite characters, Noora, wears. After a trip to Sephora, I was glad to learn that the color Rosewood / 42 is a perfect warm dark red that isn't purple, and won't end up on your teeth or smearing around. You can see it on my face in the picture below. I plan to pair it with a knee length wool coat and a turtleneck while the weather is still chilly.


3. Golden Coconut Lentil Soup. This recipe is both affordable and deliciously aromatic, blending lentils, carrots, ginger, and turmeric with fresh cilantro and creamy coconut milk.

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