Sunday, January 31, 2016

Weekend Home

Finally, the weekend we all have been waiting for has arrived. By 'all' I mean myself and my parents, as we have patiently waited for the weather to calm down so I could take a trip from New York to Philadelphia. I was originally planning my visit for the previous weekend, but out of nowhere, a snowstorm decided to ruin my plans. So the trip was postponed to the next weekend, and on Saturday morning of that next weekend I was on my way to see my parents. 

Our plans for this weekend were absolutely amazing - lunch at a newly found Italian restaurant, followed by staying in, watching TV, talking, drinking and eating more food. What could be better? As usually, this weekend home was a breath of fresh air for me, a nice getaway from the chaotic New York life. I love living in New York, but every once in a while, it is nice, and sometimes necessary, to go away for a weekend, relax, spend some time with the family, talk about what is important in life, and then return with a newly gained motivation and drive. This weekend gave me exactly that. And so, with a re-established goal of focusing on myself (e.g. self-love, confidence, etc.), I came back ready to begin the new week. How wonderful it is to have a home that makes you feel better every time you go back!

Friday, January 29, 2016

Outfit Experiment

Today, I decided to take a risk with my outfit and wear this skull t-shirt to work. We no longer have our 'business casual' dress code in the office, and especially on Fridays it's nice to experiment with outfits. I think pairing this shirt with a jacket with lace bottom helped to take the edge off of this shirt. The funny thing was - as I got to the office, I was told that I had to go to a customer dinner party that evening. Can you imagine my shock? Of course, it would happen on the day I wore something as crazy as this. But since I always like to be prepared for any such 'surprises', I had a spare dress in the office which I gladly changed into for the party. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Monday, January 25, 2016

Snow Day Closet Clean-Up

This past weekend I was supposed to go to Philadelphia to visit my parents, since I have not seen them since the New Year's. As I was getting ready for my trip, I kept hearing more and more about the 'upcoming snow storm.' I had been very skeptical about these things lately, as every time the weather forecast predicts something serious, it ends up being absolutely nothing. However, this time the predictions seemed real. After speaking with my mom, we decided that it would be a better idea to give in to their predictions and stay home 'in case something bad actually happens.' Well, it did. The storm was pretty bad. In a day, we got so much snow, it was hard to believe it fell down over a period of about 24 hours. The bad news was I had to stay locked inside my apartment for the whole weekend; the good news was exactly the same - I had to stay locked inside my apartment, which meant I got to really relax, catch up on my TV shows and, most importantly, reorganize my closet. It had been quite a while since I dedicated a good amount of time to sorting through my clothes and organizing them. 

This time, I went through my fall/winter clothes with a fine-tooth comb, only keeping items that I would definitely wear again, and putting away the items I "was not sure about." I realized that while I keep complaining about how my style is just all over the place, honestly, I don't do anything to define it. That is why this clean-up was a good start for me to truly start focusing on finding my own style. At the end of the day, the outfits were created and hung up on my clothing rack ready to be worn. 

Today, I went for more of a hipster style, with this poncho I got from Forever 21. What I love about it - it's comfy and it's warm, a perfect find for the New York winters. 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

La Boheme

This Saturday, my roommate and I had plans to go to the opera to see La Boheme. This was my first time at the opera, and I was truly looking forward to spending an evening at the Lincoln Center, one of my favorite places in NYC . Even though I had never been inside, something about all this creative atmosphere had always drawn me in. 

We started with a dinner at our favorite Russian restaurant, Russian Samovar. After a tasty meal and a glass of wine, we headed to the venue. Inside the beautiful building, the scenery was like they show in the movies - gorgeous interior decor, group of people dressed to the nines, atmosphere of anticipation of something wonderful. 

What can I say? It was an amazing experience, except we had to leave early as I started feeling worse. However, I would definitely come back to see and enjoy a show from the beginning to an end. 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Lazy Saturday

I am definitely a person who likes making plans. I am also definitely a person who likes to break all the plans and just go on with the day to see what it brings. The initial plan for today was waking up early, going to the gym (this was tentative though), then meeting up with a friend in the city for coffee and girl talk.

When I woke up the clock showed that it was not that early anymore. I decided that today was meant to be a very lazy day, where I could just stay in and enjoy not doing anything. So instead of everything that was planned, I made a quick trip to a grocery store, bought some snacks, stopped by a local coffee shop on the way back to get a coffee and a bagel, and locked myself in my apartment to indulge in my snacks and a rerun of Sex and the City. Saturdays are, after all, meant to be relaxing.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!

Celebrating New Year's (like celebrating my birthday) has always been a huge deal for me. See, in Russia, New Year's celebration is typically the biggest holiday of the year. People dress to the nines, get together and party all night long, just so they can brag the next day how late they stayed up the night before.

This year I kept going back and forth between staying in with friends and not doing anything or going out but doing something not too crazy. The latter idea won (thank goodness, otherwise I would have definitely regretted not doing anything). Every New Year's I try to do something different and make the celebration a special one. Two years ago, I spent it with the Russians at my aunt and uncle's house; last year, I went out clubbing with friends; this year, the plan was to spend the New Year's at a nice restaurant and go home on the earlier side to wake up feeling great in the morning. After a lot of research on the venue, the final decision was made in favor of a small Italian restaurant in Greenwich Village.

I can confidently say that this New Year’s celebration was one of the best ones yet! We got to dress up and meet the New Year surrounded by friends at a beautifully decorated restaurant with amazing food. Now, that is my idea of an excellent celebration!

xx Irina M.