Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Soundtrack

I've realized that not a lot of people talk about a variety of their interests in these blogs, which is funny because most of us aren't sitting here typing blog posts and out taking pictures for 99% of our time. We are whole people who probably have a ton of other interests and things going on. I know that I sometimes just end up talking about the weather or my outfit, but I like to also talk about more interesting things too. I've decided to dedicate this post (and maybe more at some point) to music. I could be wrong, but I don't think there is anyone who doesn't like music in some form.

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I find the psychological aspect of teens/college students loving music and feeling it's so important to the point of being obsessive really interesting. Think about Beatlemania, Elvis, N'Sync/boy bands. Why are we so obsessed? Is it because it's a point in our lives where we desperately need something to relate to and someone to show us we aren't alone? Teens are known to feel like no one understands them, so maybe music is the thing they cling to for emotional support besides their friends. I used to spend hours on iTunes going through the recommendations and similar bands that showed up on all my favorite bands, and then I would go to the similar artists from those bands, and so on. Before I knew it, three hours had gone by and I found a bunch of new things to listen to.

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For some reason, I'm pickier nowadays and I have no idea why. It seems that there is a window for when you are very open and susceptible to new music. I'm sure this isn't true for everyone, but it's just something I've noticed in myself and others around me. And I've always liked the experience of discovering music myself as opposed to someone pressing something on me that they love. I know that can come off as "hipster" or something, and I assure you it's not. I don't need to find something that no one else knows about or anything. I just don't like people pressuring me to listen to something. It's annoying. The same goes for movies. If you're going to tell me 50 times that I need to see this movie, then I'm not going to want to. Instead, invite me over and put the movie on. I will watch it.

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My favorite genres are indie/folk rock, ska, and oldies (swing, doo wop, etc.). I have three top favorite bands, which are Page France/Cotton Jones (they started as Page France, then started Cotton Jones as a separate band later on), Peter and the Wolf, and The Aquabats. I listen to just about everything, though. I know people hate that statement and it's very generic and vague, but it's very true for me. The only things I really can't stand are country, metal, and certain types of rap. Those are the only things that make me want to tear my ears off. Some of the bands/artists I love are: Led Zeppelin, The Toasters, Glenn Miller,  Johnny Cash (And yes, I know he can be considered country by some people, but when I talk country, I mean Brad Paisley and Garth Brooks kind of country. I feel Johnny Cash is more rockabilly, blues, and folky), Weezer, Mindless Self Indulgence, Violent Femmes, Flight of the Conchords, Spice Girls, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Nirvana, The Beatles, Architecture in Helsinki, White Stripes, Reel Big Fish, Disney music, Good Charlotte, Queen, She & Him, Justin Timberlake, and so much more. I love all kinds of music and all the moods they can bring.

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I don't really believe in "growing out" of music. I still enjoy things that I listened to when I was a kid or a teenager. It's reminiscent, nostalgic, and fun. Of course I'm aware that some of it isn't particularly amazing or good, but it was a part of me at some point in my life and it sticks around now. It molded me in some way, even if I'm not sure what way that was. This doesn't mean that there are some bands that I just stopped listening to because they were just too awful. I'm looking at you, Senses Fail and Funeral For A Friend. But yeah...I still belt out to N'Sync and Spice Girls in my car occasionally, as well as Disney songs. I was on a Frozen soundtrack kick for the last week or two, but now I'm just full-on Aquabats since I'm going to be seeing them live! I'M BEYOND EXCITED FOR THIS. I love that they are mainly ska, but also have a lot of different sounds as well. Plus they're just silly.

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As for playing music, I have been playing music since I was in the fourth grade, so about 9 years old. I was playing the flute in the school band, and did so for 4 years up until high school when I stopped. When I was 13, I started getting into rock music and decided to learn the guitar. Luckily, my band teacher was nice enough to teach me the basics. I would bring my guitar in sometimes and he would teach me chords. Other than that, I learned on my own via guitar tabs online. I love tabs because they make it so much easier to learn how to play. I can read sheet music, but I hate doing it with the guitar. I started writing my own music a little while after I started learning.

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My cousin Ashley and I had a couple of music endeavors. We had a band with one of my friends in high school, but we didn't really play anywhere except at school functions. That band ended up phasing out, and then Ashley and I just kind of did our own acoustic stuff. We recorded some songs on her laptop, but never did anything in a professional sense. I have also wrote things on my own. I mostly write lyrics and then end up becoming frustrated when I can't produce the music to it that I hear in my head. That's the hardest part for me. I hear something a certain way in my head and I can't translate it to the instrument.

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About five years ago, I decided to buy a ukulele. I don't remember exactly why, but that's around when I got into The Boy Least Likely To and they are pretty whimsical so that could be it. Anyway, I bought a uke and named it Henry. I named it after one of the main characters in my favorite book, The Time Traveler's Wife. It's funny because he is a librarian. :)

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I learned ukulele very fast. It's easier than guitar since it's only 4 strings and it's also just easier to play in general since it's smaller, especially if you have smaller hands/fingers like I do. I like that it's smaller. It makes it easier to carry around. I got a cute tweed case for it too to keep it protected. Mine is the smallest kind, which is called the soprano ukulele. There's also concert, tenor, and baritone. They even have electric acoustic ukuleles that can be plugged into amps! Chris has one of those, but his is a tenor uke. I also took a piano class in college, but since I haven't practiced since, I'm pretty rusty with it.

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Dress: ASOS//Jacket: Gap (thrifted)//Shoes: Liz Claiborne//Tights: L'eggs//Flower Crown: Handmade by Chris//Twig Necklace: c/o Lisa Leonard Designs//Charm Necklace: Borrowed from my mom (it was hers from when she was younger!)//Lipstick: LORAC Cosmetics
I have definitely favored the ukulele over the guitar in the last few years. I love the sound of it, I love the size of it, and I love the simplicity of it. I highly recommend it if you have ever wanted to learn an instrument, but felt too intimidated. It's really easy and like the guitar, there are tabs/chord charts online that make everything so much easier to read and learn! I'm curious as to if any of you play instruments, and which ones. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know!

Friday, April 18, 2014

April Wishlist

As you may have seen, I recently won ModCloth's Twirl Around The World contest and received a $350 gift certificate! Huzzah! You may think I'd just go to town and order a bunch of stuff from my wishlist (which is pretty long), but I'm always hesitant when it comes to things like this. I don't want to just splurge and order anything and everything all at once. I keep thinking that I'm going to order things and then something new and better will come in and I'll wish I got that instead. It's sort of like a Murphy's Law type thing or something. I've been checking the New Arrivals every day to see if anything comes in that really screams YES at me. There are a ton of things that I really like and would wear, but I often wait for something that is a definite yes within the first second of seeing it. That's how I know I really want it. I know it's not too big of a deal since ModCloth does offer free returns and exchanges, but I guess I just tend to overthink things. Included below are a couple of the things that are on my ModCloth wishlist.

April-Wishlist
1//2//3//4//5//6//7//8
I only heard of Le Bomb Shop recently, but they have so many things that I want! That striped dress in the upper left corner is at the top of my list, though. I love the colors and the vintage-esque shape! I also love high-waisted shorts, but I find that it's hard to find a pair that are both comfy and not too short. I don't need people getting a peek at my cheeks! The black shorts from Le Bomb Shop look like they offer proper coverage.

I'm also loving Bonne Chance Collection's pink polka dot dress since it's really perfect for spring, and I love easy to wear lady ties like the grey one from ASOS. Chris got me a black one from there, which I still need to wear (I've been waiting for the weather to warm up because there's a certain dress I want to wear it with), but I love how it just snaps on. Really simple and easy! I'd love some more colors to choose from. Oh, and I love tortoise shell so that's why I really love those sunglasses from Ruche! By the way, you can get 15% of our Ruche order from 4/19-4/25 with code AFFILIATE15! :)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Into The Ocean, Into The Sun

Boy, life has gotten so hectic that I'm finding it hard to keep up with my usual posting schedule! It's kind of sad when you're too drained to even edit pictures...haha. I also don't have as much time to take pictures, so you may see fewer posts for now, unfortunately. It's hard to squeeze in photoshoots in the 20-30 minutes of free time I have between things during the week. I pretty much live for the weekends when I can have days like the one I had when I took these pictures. It was gorgeous out and I felt like we could finally go hang out at the beach without being freezing. SPRING'S FINALLY HERE, YOU GUYS.

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Weekends are for lazing around outside and taking in as much fresh air and sunlight as you can...at least for me anyway. I live for being able to travel around and enjoy the outdoors. I envy those travel bloggers who make a living by just seeing the world and writing about it. That is my dream life - to be paid to travel. I really need to look more into travel credit cards so that I can start earning miles and hopefully be able to earn enough for some cool vacations! It can be overwhelming trying to pick one, though. Just another thing on my list!

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Weekends are also for sleeping in and then waking up to play iPhone games for an hour as you lay around in bed. Saturdays are my favorite because they are usually spent sleeping in and then galavanting and spending the day with Chris and sometimes our friends. Plus they end with the promise of another day of sleeping in and relaxing.

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Nadia came down to hang out for the day (she lives a good drive away), which is always fun since we don't get to see each other enough! Whenever we visit each other, we always try to take each other to places that the other hasn't been yet. I had decided that this local beach would be nice since the weather was great, so Chris and I met up with her there. It was so nice to sit on the rocks and enjoy the view, the warmth, and the smell of the ocean.

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We ended up heading to one of my favorite Mexican restaurants for dinner later on. I can never get enough burritos. Ever. Chris and I make our own crunchwraps every now and then and it's one of my favorite meals. I always feel like I'm going to explode afterwards, but it's worth it. It would be a crunchy, spicy, delicious death.

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This red hat is one of the hats I got at the vintage show I was talking about in my last post. I love wearing red, but red accessories are especially fun because they can add just the right amount of pop to an outfit. Plus, it's an essential color for a nautical scheme. :)

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Dress: Suger via LalaMagic//Hat: Vintage//Shoes: Dana Buchman via Kohl's//Belt: Forever 21//Tights: L'eggs//Lipstick: Flirt! via Kohl's
Easter is coming up, and I am planning on doing some baking this weekend. I am always called upon to bake a dessert for family holidays. I'm thinking about making Easter-themed cupcakes this year. I rarely make cupcakes, so it'll be a nice change for me. I was originally going to make a cake, but ain't nobody got time for that. Cupcakes are much easier, so cupcakes it is.