My mom spontaneously asked me if I would accompany her to Portland last week. I agreed because it sounded like fun AND I hadn’t ever been to Oregon and the only things I knew about the state came from the show “Portlandia”. I also knew that Oregon had a town called Beaverton because that’s where my best friend’s fake ID said she was from. So as you can see, my knowledge was vast.

“Portlandia” paints the city in a comical way. In the first episode they note that “The dream of the 90’s is alive in Portland” which I have concluded to be absolutely true. Compared to the only other Northwest  city I’ve encountered (Seattle), Portland is a little less polished, and a lot more homeless. They have their fair share of hipsters–trendy restaurants, quirky boutiques, funky hotels. But overall, the city and outlaying suburbs have a quaintness about them that is hard to find elsewhere.

While I was in town I made sure to drag my mom to Voodoo Doughnut with me at 7:30am. If I had to accomplish one thing in Portland, it was to eat a doughnut from this location. Usually I’ve heard that there are massive lines coming out of this shop, but since we went bright and early, we stepped right in. We both got boring, old fashioned doughnuts, but they were really delicious. You can get some really weird creations there. For example, they offer bacon doughnuts and cereal coated doughnuts. I’m a plain Jane so I just do with whatever option looks suitable for a child’s palate. 6108795141_effae307fc_z

On our trip we visited some subdivisions outside of the city and did some shopping at a cute outdoor mall. Our favorite store was a paper/stationary/card shop that offered super cute calendars and greeting cards for almost any occasion. We stayed in there for quite some time because outside it started to downpour. Tired of waiting it out, my mom and I took off our shoes and made a mad dash to the car. We ended up soaked. Memories!

For dinner that night, we met up with our blogger friend turned real-life friend, Maggie! Maggie, being a true blue Oregonian, took us to a delicious restaurant called Mother’s in downtown Portland. It was yum. I could’ve just eaten the bread for my entire meal. I love meeting bloggers in real life. It’s so surreal. Maggie is such a happy and funny person. She had such a good energy about her. I told her that I thought her butt looked really nice and she seemed alarmed by that comment, but other than that, I think I came off as semi-normal. She and my mom were like two peas in a pod. It was precious.

The pretty chandeliers inside of Mother's.

The pretty chandeliers inside of Mother’s.

The next morning we met my friend Matt, whom I befriended during my study abroad in Canterbury, UK. He took us to this little place called Bijou Cafe. Super cute. Their bacon was delicious. It was great catching up with him and discovering his new-found talents (he makes metal jewelry!). He really loves Portland and everything that the city has to offer, so it was fun seeing it through his eyes. We all had a good laugh about how much we hate snotty French people, but that being said, we really want to learn French.

Overall it was a fun whirlwind of a trip. I got a little taste of Portland and got to meet up with some great friends. Did you do anything fun last week?



H&M vs. Forever 21: A Study

I’ve thought about this topic for a while now. Both stores have recently been erected in close proximity to my home. I’ve taken note that while most people have preferences about which stores they like to shop at, almost every female between the ages 15 and 40 will stop in both H&M and Forever 21. Whenever I see someone in either store below the 15 year-old end of the spectrum, I’m disturbed. But it doesn’t bother me nearly as much as seeing someone enter the store that is way beyond the 40 year-old range. Like, Talbots is just around the corner, yo. Regardless, they are popular stores and have become almost interchangeable.


Finding clothes that not only fit, but also compliment our body type is a life long struggle for most women. I have found that Forever 21’s sizes aren’t as  accommodating as H&M’s are. H&M has, by far, a better selection of sizes ranging from XS-3XL and Maternity. Forever 21 recently (within the last couple of years) added a plus size section which also goes up to a 3XL. However, not all of their stores include the separated plus size department. So for the rest of the people that shop there, they must indeed have the bodies of 21 year-olds…forever.forever211


For most people, quality isn’t an important factor in their shopping sessions. It is for me, but that’s only because I have standards. Forever 21 likes to sport material with no give, unfinished hems, and scratchy fabric. Jus’ sayin’. To be fair, you are paying a much cheaper price than most stores when you shop at Forever 21. Bad quality = good prices = happy high schoolers. For people with a little more ca$h money, I would suggest H&M only because their clothes are slightly more expensive. Rightfully so. Of course, they aren’t of the same quality of higher end brands by any means, but they definitely feel better and look better in general. H&M offers a large selection of work-appropriate pieces, and I for one think it’s important for your office clothes to look nice. Unless you don’t work in an office. Then throw on some overalls and get to work. (Obviously jobs either require skirts and blouses or overalls. No in between.)


Your eyes are probably rolling to the back of your head for this one. Really? Organization? Yes. If a store isn’t organized, I can’t feel comfortable shopping in it. During my high school years, I remember my local Forever 21 as a disaster zone. Like, it literally looked like a bomb went off in the store. Clothes were everywhere. If you found something you liked, good luck finding your size and good luck finding anyone to help you. Now of course with their growing popularity, Forever 21 has stepped up their game. However, their dressing room floors are still as filthy as they were the day that I turned 17. Dust everywhere. And only 5 items allowed in. WTF. H&M has clean dressing rooms and extremely flattering mirrors. And more importantly, their store is organized to a


This is probably the only category that Forever 21 excels in. Their variety of clothing items and accessories is vast. They just pack a lot of clothes into that building. However, their styles are mostly appropriate for the younger generations. H&M kind of breaks up their store into different sections. Like, one section for the high schoolers (meanwhile these clothes could still be worn by older folks…but they just have a younger feel about them) and another section for the more “mature” fashion conscious group. I like how it’s set up and that everything isn’t all jumbled together.

Overall, I would come to the conclusion that Forever 21, though offering a grand selection of items and tempting prices, falls short of H&M by not producing better quality clothes, various sizes, and having messy stores.

Where do you shop? 


A Day Out On The Town

I did something today that I haven’t done for a long time. I went shopping. I used to go every day, and now I go every other day. Just kidding. I actually hadn’t been for a while because I’m in this weird stage in my life where I try not to spend money. I know, gross.

When I was an avid shopper, it was easy to stay in my own little world and just focus on the clothes and myself. I was a little rusty today and kept observing other people and the ridiculous things that were being said by common folk.

The following are real quotes said by real people and my responses (if I actually had the guts to say them out loud) along with some of my inner thoughts and struggles.

At H&M

Girl shopping with her grandma: I like these dresses.

Grandma: Yes. Dresses are in this year.

Me: You know what else is in this year? Pants. And shirts. And clothes in general.

At Joe Fresh (I know, wtf?)

Employee: How are you doing today?

Me: Fine thanks. How are you?

Employee: I’m good, thanks! It’s kind of cold in here.

Me: Yeah you should probably quit.

At Forever 21

Me: Ughhh.

Me: This would be too small on me.

Me: This would be too short on me.

Me: This is too pink.

Me: This is…wait what is this?

At H&M

Mom with her daughter: Hey this would be cute! [holds up a sparkly black mini skirt]

Daughter: UGH not for festivals!

Me: Um you should listen to your mom, she knows what she’s talking about and could really fix your whole look. If you consider what you’re wearing “a look”.

At Forever 21

Me: I need these shoes.

Me: No.

Me: Yes I do.

Me: You need food, water and shelter.

Me: And these shoes.

Me: Then you have to throw out a pair at home to balance your life.

Me: When did I make that rule?

Me: Yeah wtf that rule sucks.

Me: Unlimited amount of shoes, right?

Me: Right.

Me: But then if I buy these I’ll have to wait in line and talk to someone.

Me: Unnecessary purchase.

At Joe Fresh

Me: Hi, do you have these in a darker denim?

Employee: Hmm no, I don’t think so. But we have them in red!

Me: Oh, okay. That’s the same.

living in canada, Stores

Extreme Makeover: Canada

So I think Canada finally looked in the mirror and said, “Wow we’re like, a super gross country. Let’s fix ourselves!” I knew it would be baby steps after I heard the news about the Canadian introduction of Target, but never in my wildest dreams could I imagine that Canada would take their country’s makeover to the next level. Friends and family, may I have the pleasure of being the first to announce that Nordstrom is coming to Canada!

I heard the news when I was volunteering, and I thought I was going to faint. My supervisor asked me if I’d ever been to Nordstrom. That’s like asking me if I’ve ever breathed air. I told him it was only my favorite store in the world, duh. And our conversation pretty much ended after that.

It’s like God keeps answering all of my really important shopping prayers. I’m so blessed. There’s just one problem. I don’t have any money. And in order to even look at a Nordstrom parking lot you have to have some dough. I might be exaggerating a bit.

The sad thing is, I’ve almost gotten used to not spending money here. I never buy clothes for myself anymore. I never have the urge to. See what happens when you move to Canada? It changes you.

Maybe the new introduction of Nordies will light a fire within me to shop more. Even though the closest one to me will be in Vancouver. So basically I’ll have to take a ferry or plane to get there. How rude. Clearly they didn’t have my best interests in mind. Actually, I don’t think they had anyone’s interests in mind since there will only be 4 locations in all of Canada (Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, and Vancouver).

Canadian Nordstrom Pros: More shopping for me, more street cred for Canada, I will feel a sense of normalcy in Canada, and thousands of new jobs for Canadians.

Canadian Nordstrom Cons: Canadians working in Nordstrom and ruining everything, no actual Nordstrom close to where I live, I have no money so nothing even matters.


A Post About Nothing

I haven’t been feeling very inspired to write anything recently. Sometimes I feel like I’ve talked about everything there is to talk about. Sometimes I can’t even remember if I’ve written about a certain topic already or if I just dreamed that I did.

These days if you have writer’s block (or any kind of block at all really) you go onto Google and see what there is to write about. I typed “what should I blog about?” into Google, clicked on the first entry, and this is what it said:

1. What is your expertise? Readers want to read about what you know and your special experiences. Really!

Okay, geeze. I believe you. Problem is, I don’t have an expertise. Unless you count being able to name every Pokemon an expertise, I’ve got nothin. Are most people experts in a certain area? Is this some sort of life requirement that I missed out on? Should I look into something? I guess history would be my expertise because I got my degree in it, but we all know that’s a lie and I forgot everything I learned right after the final exam.

2. What’s the news? While you don’t have to necessarily be a news breaker, you can give your view on what’s happening in your industry and how it relates to your hobby, life, etc.

Am I supposed to have an industry? I don’t even know what day of the week it is, never mind what my industry should be. I feel like I break the news occasionally, but I usually sway towards celebrity gossip more than newsy news. Can we call it newsy news from now on? The reason I didn’t write about the newest celebrity news is because my heart is broken and talking about it just makes it hurt more.

I’ll give you a hint: It has to do with these two.

3. What is your personality? Do you like to take a stance? Are you funny? Do you like being a contrarian? These insights can help you to write about your topic.

Can’t I just be everything? Why do I have to choose just one of those things? Can’t I be a funny contrarian that likes to take a stance? Maybe I don’t want to be defined by one personality type. I think there are sides of me that are soft and kind and other parts that are funny and playful and other parts that are deep and thoughtful. Notice how I didn’t name any character flaws? It’s because I don’t have any, in case you’re wondering.

4. What are your hopes and fears? Things that you can’t stop thinking about or what keeps you up at night could be good things to share with others.

I would say one of my hopes is trying to live a good solid life. A life I can look back at and feel proud of. A lot of the time I get caught up in trying to make other people proud, but I think I should just be focusing on making myself proud. I try to be the best example to others that I can be.

My fear is that I’ll go to a restaurant and they won’t have my favorite thing on the menu anymore. This scenario has happened to me multiple times and it’s scarred me for life.

5. What are your hobbies? Things that you like to do on your free time are often great topics to discuss.

Um let’s see here. Sleeping is a big hobby of mine. Eating is also another big one. Going online. Driving and listening to music. Walking and listening to music. Just listening to music in general. Traveling to new places. Did I say eating? Um petting soft animals. Laughing at people. Laughing at myself. Not exercising. Shopping. Painting my nails (but only when they’re grown out). Going to movies. Eating popcorn. Eating chocolate. Eating.

I think that’s about it.

Were those prompts supposed to solve my writer’s block? Because I think they made it worse. And they made my self esteem plummet because I don’t have an industry or an expertise.

I guess technically you can’t have writer’s block if you’re not a writer, so I probably have nothing to worry about, right?



Have you ever walked into a store and you’re immediately greeted by a salesperson? And then they follow you around the entire store telling you what items they really love. And then tell you about every product that you glance at. I hate those people. Surprise, surprise.

I feel like Los Angeles would be home to a lot of those types for some reason. Maybe because everyone there annoys me? Or because they all think they know what everyone wants. Or how much someone wants to spend. YOU DON’T KNOW MY LIFE.

There’s a way to stop a salesperson from doing this. If they come up to you and say “Don’t you absolutely adore this new coat we JUST got in?” You simply reply with, “Actually, I don’t really like that.” OR “Ew what kind of tacky hoe would wear that?” OR “Don’t talk to me.” They all usually work. Just depends what kind of mood you’re in!

The other day I had a situation that I couldn’t talk my way out of. It was terrifying. Paul and I were in a sporting goods store and I was looking at running shoes. There were some really cool Nike ones that there turquoise and purple that I liked. I asked if I could try them on and the salesman (who looked like a thicker version of Mark McGrath) said, “Can I check your feet first?” Assuming that he was going to measure my feet, I took of my shoes. He asked me if he could see how I walk. Looking back, I should have said no. But I walked and he said that my feet need a stability shoe. So the shoe I picked wouldn’t do anything for my feet.

Kind of like these.

I guess that makes sense. And maybe he had my best interest in mind, but that still annoyed me. What if I wanted the Nike ones?! I usually wear Asics and that’s the kind he recommended for me and the kind that I ended up buying, but it just annoyed me that he put me in a position where it was weird for me to ask to try them on. The thing is, he was nice. But he acted like he knew everything about feet. Paul asked about his feet and oddly enough, his type of shoe was stability as well. I think this guy just diagnoses everyone the same. If he knows so much about feet, why isn’t he a podiatrist? Why is he working at the shoe department in a sporting goods store?

Do all slimy guys look like this?

These kinds of people can ruin a perfectly good shopping experience. I especially hate when people take their jobs so seriously. Me purchasing shoes doesn’t depend on how well you sell them. It depends on how badly I need shoes. At least I don’t have to smell people’s feet all day.