Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sizes. ::sigh::

As most women are aware, you are never one clothing size, because each store/designer/label has their own way of sizing.  This is why we have to try things on, and why a good tailor, not diamonds, is a girls best friend.

The NY Times just wrote an article on the ridiculousness of sizing throughout the apparel industry.  I myself can attest.  Last fall I bought a new pair of size 8 jeans from the GAP, because after training for the Philly marathon, my size 8 jeans from Banana Republic were too big. (They're owned by the same company!) I have skirts in sizes 4-10 and they all fit. Usually I'm an 8-10 in dress sizes.  When I called a boutique to order a bridesmaid dress last month however, I was informed that according to my measurements, I fall between a 12 and a 14.

Despite all these different sizes, my measurements remain the same.  So, hey, could we drop the sizes and just start measuring things in inches please?

Last week I was visiting my parents, and my Mom and I spent an afternoon shopping.  We stepped into a Chico's where the following took place.

Saleswoman- "Have you shopped at Chico's before?"
My Mom- "No."
Saleswoman- "Ok, well welcome!  Just to let you know, we use feel good sizing, so a 0-4 is a 1, a 6-10 is a 2, and a 12-14 is a 3."
Me and my Mom- ::blink::
Saleswoman: "Let me know if I can help you find anything!"

Later while looking through a rack of clothes...

My Mom- "Wait, so what size am I again?"
Me- "I don't even know, that's the dumbest thing I've ever heard.  You know what makes me feel good? Knowing what size I'm supposed to try on."

We didn't buy anything.

Can we please start acting like men and Europeans, and measure our clothes by our actual measurements, and not some arbitrary number that is supposed to make us feel good or bad about ourselves?  I promise you, clothing manufacturers, I have more important things to think about and remember, and when I shop, I'd really just like for it to be easy, and not require trying on 3 different sizes of the same garment, until I discover what size I am today.

Monday, April 18, 2011

How to Host a Fundraising Brunch

Chef Carrie, presides over the delicious spread.

Here are some things I know to be true:
- Brunch is the greatest meal invented
- Entertaining is fun
- Volunteering is sexy

It should come as no surprise then, that I said "yes!" without hesitation when my close friends Regina and Carrie asked if I would be interested in hosting a brunch at my apartment to fundraise for Planned Parenthood.  After all, what with the government threatening to shut down, I'm happy to support them in any way I can.

Regina and Carrie hosted a brunch last fall to help fulfill their fundraising commitment to sitting on PPWP's board, and it was so fun and such a success, we decided to do it again.

Brunch is so exciting, jazz hands were obviously in order.

The thing is, hosting a brunch is a really easy way to fundraise.  It's low stress, low pressure, and low cost for both you and your friends that you invite.  If you ever want to raise some fast cash in a couple hours to help support one of your favorite organizations, I would definitely recommend hosting a brunch.  

Here's what we do:

We supply the food and beverages.  We invite our friends, and invite them to invite their friends.  We collect $20 per person who comes, and we donate the proceeds.  We all have fun.

Like any good kid raised by Midwestern parents, the coffee maker went on at 7:30 and didn't turn off until well into the afternoon.  If you're an experienced entertainer, perhaps you already have a large caterer-style coffee urn.  I do not. (yet) But I do have a carafe, so am able to have 2 pots of coffee hot at any given time.  Also, use mugs.  We had paper products for everything else, but coffee tastes better out of a mug.

Enlist lots of help:

Eric made sausage patties.

Bethany made Sangria.

Regina was taking pictures.

Brunch has some lovely beverage options.  We offered:


Bloody Marys!

And of course, the aforementioned coffee and sangria.

I made waffles.  This waffle iron was a wedding gift to my parents.  I took it with me when I moved to Pittsburgh.  More than 30 years old, and it's one of my favorite small appliances.

And of course, what I consider to be central to any successful gathering.  The cheese plate.

But, what really made the day a success were these guys:

And these folks...

And all of them.

Big THANK YOU to everyone who came, cooked, hung out and supported.  We had a blast, and of course, can't wait to do it again.

Friday, April 15, 2011


Precisely went ahead and surprised me with my birthday present a day early.  These are the most over-the-top, ridiculouly awesome, purple shoes, I've ever owned.  These are America's Next Top Model Shoes.  These are... I can't do them justice in words, here's a picture:


Also, thanks to the Mod-stylists, for approving this purchase.

Monday, April 11, 2011

In which I finally get a horizontal Driver's License

My Driver's License expires this weekend, so today I was responsible and coupled in a visit to the DMV with a Dr.'s Appointment, so that I can continue to drive zipcars, get through airport security, and go to 21+ establishments.

The last time I got a new license, I was a year away from turning 21, so this is the first time that my license appropriately reflects my status as a grown up and is horizontal rather than vertical.

The picture is a lot better too.  Unlike passport photos, in which you are not allowed to smile, and always look terrible, you have a chance at taking a decent license picture.

The last time I went to get a new license however, I could have cared less.  It was August, so the summer weather had just hit that point where it stops being fun, and becomes instead that unbearable, sweltering humidity, mixed with thunderstorms and rain showers that rather than cooling the day down, just make everything wet.  As a result, my hair was slicked up, makeup would have run right off my face so I wasn't wearing any, basically I looked like a real prize.

On top of that, I had just had my heart really broken for the first time, and leaving the self indulgent routine of eating ice-cream in bed while listening to Aimmee Mann, to instead venture outdoors with all the happy people wasn't high on my list of Things I'd Like to Do.

But, I dragged myself out of my apartment, and hopped a bus to downtown Pittsburgh to go to the DMV anyways.  The DMV in downtown, is next to impossible to find.  In fact, I wouldn't have found it (I was still using a flip phone then), except that I ran into a co-worker who was able to give me directions.  By the time I found the building and was standing in line in the un-airconditioned, crowded, DMV, I was in less than a good mood.

They finally called my name to have my picture taken, I sat down in front of the camera, and looked at the sticker, the guy told me to look at.

I didn't smile, didn't care what I looked like, I just wanted this whole stupid license ordeal to be over with so I could go back to my dramatic self-pity party.

He snapped the camera.  The picture showed up on the screen.  I looked at it and shrugged.  The DMV guy looked at it.  He paused.

"Maybe, we try that again," he said, "You can smile you know..."

When the guy taking pictures at the DMV tells you to re-take the picture, you know it must be truly awful.  So I smiled a pathetic-fake smile,  and that's how I ended up with a license that made me cringe every time I had to bring it out.

It was kind of satisfying today, watching the woman punch holes into that old license, while handing me my shiny new one.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Let Them Eat Cake

I have the honor of co-chairing the Midwife Center's Annual fundraiser this year, with my event-planning partner in crime Regina.

We were volunteering at a Midwife Center event last night, and decided to create a video invitation to the event.

I hope you can join us on Saturday, May 7! It really is a great event.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Night at the Opera

Last night my sister and I went to the Pittsburgh Opera Company's production of Turnadot.  It was awesome.  The costumes and sets were beautiful, the music was awesome, the Benedum center was sold out.  Opera is very not dead.

Discussion during the intermission after the first act:

Me - "The thing I love about Opera is how fast everything moves.  There's going to be an execution!  Father I've found you after so many years!  I love her!"

Sister - "Seriously.  She smells good!  I'm going to marry her!"
(reading program)  "and in act 3!  She kills herself to save his life, and he's all, oh thanks, I'm gonna go make out with this other chick now."