Instagram Stories V.1

About two years ago, I did a few posts where I shared my Instagram photos and just sort of rambled about them: here and here and kind of here.  After peaking through those pictures, and marveling at how long my hair was, I decided to resurrect that feature.  The goal is to do a monthly post that, in theory, encapsulates what I've been up to lately.

Now, since I'm just starting this, I decided that I would just post and expand on the pictures I've posted this month instead of trying to do a mega-post encapsulating what I've been posting since the new year.

Without much more delay, here are my five favorite (or most-telling) pictures from April.

This month I officially found out that I have mono.  It was both stressful, but also a relief because I learned that my extreme fatigue was only a temporary thing.  I work at a job where we eat each others food and steal sips of each others drinks.  I didn't want to infect any of my teammates, so I made sure to label my water in the most obvious way possible.

It wouldn't really be instagram if every other photo wasn't a selfie, isn't that part of its purpose? This particular selfie was the day after I got my new hair color.  The color I always gravitate towards is red, it honestly feels more natural to me than my actual hair.  I've had quite a few different shades, but this one easily makes the top 3.

I've been crafting a lot lately.  I want to make sure that my free time is productive, even if my productivity is just for enjoyment.  Since I watch a lot of Netflix, I feel slightly less lazy when I'm creating something.  I've been doing some painting, some pom-pom-ing, and now I have a cutting machine, so I'm excited to see what happens next.

Maybe this photo isn't that amazing, but it's easily my favorite from this month because it is a reminder of how lucky I am to have a man friend like I do.  Since I've restarted my blogging streak, and even before, I've gone back and forth about whether or not I should purchase a tripod.  When I take outfit pictures, I am balancing my camera on cars and grills and railings.  This balancing act is actually how my last camera came to meet it's end.  Despite this, I wasn't ready to take the plunge.  My man friend has heard my occasional remark about getting a tripod and he decided to surprise me with one.  We went to Best Buy and he told me to pick out whichever one I wanted because he had been worried about choosing one and it being wrong.  This photo makes me smile because it reminds me of what a great guy that I have.

This photo really captures how much Crookston hates being put into his kennel (and also how messy my laundry room is).  Usually, Crookston will "hide" under the coffee table where all that I have to do is push it over and pick him up.  Lately, he's taken to hiding in the laundry room; sometimes even going as far as hiding under clothing.  It's sad, yet slightly amusing.  I love him even when he breaks my heart.

I was actually a little surprised at how hard it was to narrow this post to five pictures.  Instagram is great because it can capture moments and experiences that you may have otherwise missed.  Every photo I've posted has a little story behind it, so it really came down to which are the most important and unique to me.

Crookston's Butt

The other day the weather was beautiful and I had the apartment to myself, so I decided to snap a few photos...all while trying to act inconspicuous as cars passed.  I maybe took four photos before I had to adapt.
I worry about Crookston getting through the bars of the balcony, so I use a painting to block the door so he can look out and not feel completely out of the loop.  Here is Crookston telling me that I need to look more "broken down," the way Tyra's models do.
If you know Crookston at all, it will not surprise you to hear that all he did was cry when that painting was up.  Solution: Take a few selfies with the fur baby.  Here he looks into selfie-ing with mom.

Now he's going for the far-off, daydreaming, look.  Nailing it, I might add.  I did not get the memo, so I just look cheesy.

Here is my favorite look of Crookston's; I call it "Mom let me go because I'm pretty sure that woman and the dog she's walking are going to attack us so I need to bark so they know we are a force to be reckoned with."
Once I saw Crookston's posing and modeling skills, I figured that I should just cut my loses and let him be the star of the show as usual.

As if it wasn't enough for Crookston to take over my photo shoot, he had to get distracted and take away from my focus.  He's lucky that he's so cute.

This is what giving up looks like.  This was the last picture I attempted to take before realizing dogs on leashes don't necessarily glam any look up.  Especially when it's mostly butt shots.


Today it snowed, so I figured a beautiful, green-grass, outfit post was in order.  This is probably one of my favorite outfits.  Honestly, if you see me on a regular basis, you have most likely seen me wear this multiple times.  There was a time when I wore these pants at least three-times a week (I own multiple pairs of this exact pant).  Mike calls them my "sleepy pants" because he thinks they look like pajama bottoms.  They're comfortable, so it really doesn't matter how many people hate on them.

The older I get, the more my fashion choices become about comfort, as well as what I find visually appealing.  I used to wear wedges and the occasional high heel, but after a running injury (okay, I run at the pace of a turtle, but it's faster than walking, even speed-walking) my calves cannot take the pressure.  I'll break out the wedges on special occasions, or when I know that I will not be walking a lot, but gone are the days when I can last an entire shift at work with them.

Another beauty trend that I'm slowly working away from would be beautiful, delicate prints.  I love this trend on others, the uber-feminine detail, but cannot pull it off myself.  I'll buy these pieces that are light in color, intricate in design, but after three weeks of hanging in my closet, tags still attached, they go back to the store.  I'm learning to accept that I can love trends, but sometimes it's best to leave them to others.  90% of what I wear is dark, and the rest is Obey.  That's okay though, because it's me.

Now there are a few fashion faux-pas that I love.  Animal print is a personal favorite, the gaudier the better.  I like pattern mixing and while this is a trend that the nation (well, pinterest) seems to embrace, good ole ND is just a little behind this trend...either that, or I'm horrible at it and my confidence is louder than the haters.  My biggest fashion faux-pas though is wearing clothes that do not flatter my body.
I like crops tops.  Me.  A busty, big-booty, "thick" gal who prefers sweets to salads and diet coke to water.  For real though, I've had possibly ten glasses of water since the beginning of the year...and that's a very generous estimate.  Girls like me aren't the ones you see advertising crop tops, but I love the trend because I'm finally learning to love my body (and that means I can still hate shorts because they're disgusting.  That was aggressive, I'm sure you look beautiful in shorts because you like shorts.  I look horrible in shorts because I'm uncomfortable so all anyone can notice is my awkwardness.  This is the longest, in-parenthesis, side-bar conversation ever.  One more thing though, I just bought fabric, fashion the short version of these pants, so maybe this will be the year I find a short I love other than my high-rise cotton ones!)

Another thing I love that I'm not supposed to are tight clothes.  I feel better in fitted clothing, not because I think my love handles look better on the stage that is the waist of my jeans, but because it soothes me.  Yeah, it makes me feel safe.  I wear tight tanks under everything otherwise I couldn't wear any of the flowly shirts in my closet.  My mother always talks about how strange I am with senses, I don't like to touch certain things, and my wrists and forearms can not be covered, and I need to wear fitted clothing.  I know that my size 29 butt isn't a 26 or 27, but if I put on pants that "fit" I'm physically uncomfortable.  I don't know why I am the way that I am, but I like me the way that I am.

I am the girl who shops in stores marketed to older women, because their cheetah print is bigger and gaudier.  I am the person who will buy 15 black shirts, and not one with pink or purple.  I'll wear wedges if I want, but will walk around barefoot once I start to feel pain.  I'll wear crop tops, and size 26 pants (but not at the same time, because that's too much even for me!).  My style may not be top-notch, or even always flattering, but it's all mine.  No one else would dare make this many mistakes :)

Photography Attempt V.1

One of my goals of this birthday-year has been to take more photos.  Now, I don't have a super amazing camera or editing program, so I don't want anyone to think that I imagine myself to be some amazing photographer, but everyone has to start somewhere and you only get better with practice, right?
All of these photos were taken at my Grandma's this Easter weekend.  Also, as an awkward side note, I've decided to start posting larger photos that way you can see my pores in outfit photos...I don't know what the bonus is for photos like the ones in this post, though.
The ice was still on the lake at Pokegama.  This is the view walking down to the lake from my Grandma's house.

One of the bloggers I follow has started making totes/pouches from photos she has taken.  I love that idea and when I saw the stack of wood, I immediately thought of her and how this would be cool on a bag or coin purse.

The sun was so beautiful when I was walking with Maizy (my Grandma's new dog).  I know that I didn't capture just how amazing it was, but I think you can get a hint in some of these pictures.

The lake.  As you can see, the ice is slowly thawing.  This is the part of the beach that I remember playing in when my brother and I were younger.  There was a good 10-foot section between the dock and the weeds and I could usually get pretty far before weeds and fish with teeth sent me back to shore.  Yeah, I know that fish with teeth aren't exactly a thing in Minnesota lakes, but a girl can have an over-active imagination!

The other way.  The previous photo looked right from where the dock was, and this is what would be to the left.

Here is Maizy.  Her full name is actually Amazing, but we call her Maizy for short.  My grandma came to have this four-year-old princess when her original owner became sick and could no longer care for her.  Maizy doesn't really like me.  I watch her when she tries to hide bones and that makes her feel like I'm a bad guy, at least that's what her growl says.  She also was upset because I wouldn't let her walk in the sand.

The dock, just sitting and ready for the lake to thaw.

Perfect time of day. 

Maizy, wondering what I'm up to, obviously not amused.  Eventually she'll warm up to me...I think.  If she thinks I'm a lot to handle, I can't imagine how she will respond when she meets Crookston for the first time.

The canoes, just hanging out by the boat shed.

When I was younger, my brother and I once flipped the canoe over and walked under water.  It was cool.

Not sure what the seats are from, but I know that they've behind the shed for a few years now; that's years of snow and rain and other bad weather.  I feel like the guys from American Pickers would maybe be excited originally, but then offer up $10...or just leave it, stating what a cool piece it is.  That's probably just the over-imagination in me.

Thanks for enduring my first all-photo post.  I thought that I'd just put up the pictures with zero commentary, but I'm a writer, so it just looked naked.  What's salad without a little dressing?  Sadness.  I wasn't going to give you leafy greens when I could give you a burger...because that's what I turned that plain lettuce into, a burger.  Lettuce is essentially a condiment.  I hate salads.  This got weird fast.