Friday, December 21, 2012

Five Quick Takes Friday

I'm back after not posting this series last Friday!

1. I didn't get the job I really wanted. Sigh. But, the Director of Talent Management and the Vice President of Talent Operations have me in mind for a different position. I'll be meeting with them in the new year to discuss. Also, their titles make me feel like it's a talent show. I think I'll tap dance. :)

2. My sister and Stacy get here tonight! I'm so excited. I have lots of fun things planned for them. Kristen says Stacy wants to rest and not be busy, but that is so not going to happen.

3. I think I'm all done Christmas shopping. I need one more thing to be delivered and then I should be good. This is what my presents look like this year.

4. We're going to make Sparkling Holiday Mimosas on Christmas Eve. Looks yummy!

5. This video is one of the cutest things I've seen. It will make you smile. :)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

Here's volume 4 of What I Wore Wednesday!

Outfit #1

Wore this to work and to the retirement party for one of my reps at the Design Center. Nothing too special but a typical outfit for me. The sweater is super soft and a kind-of slubby knit. I like a short sleeved sweater when it's not too cold out.

Top - Kohl's / Jeans - J. Jill / Necklace - Target / Shoes - Charles David

These are seriously some of my favorite shoes. Leopard printed calf hair with a patent leather kitten heel. I've had them for years. Love!

Outfit #2

I wore this out to dinner and to the Big Head Todd & the Monsters concert with Michelle. Originally I was wearing my Levi's and heeled boots and then decided that I didn't want to be in heels all night while standing at the concert, so I changed into ankle length skinny jeans and flats. This top is fun - it's got a little peplum, which you can't see very well in this picture. I think it doesn't look all that flattering in this picture; I felt cuter in person. :) I'm sure I could have made it more interesting with a fun colored necklace, but most of the time I'm pretty boring with my jewelry.

Cardigan - Target / Top - Elle via Kohl's / Jeans - J. Jill / Shoes - Steve Madden

The coat I wore over this is pretty cute, so I took another picture with it on. It's a wool, kelly green, short pea coat. It livened up a pretty tame outfit.

Coat - Target

Outfit #3

I've had this dress forever - like probably 7 or 8 years. Before I recently moved, I cleaned out my closet and found it - I'd completely forgotten that I had it! I hadn't worn it in quite a while because it didn't look on me, but since I've lost a little weight, it's fabulous once more! And I got so many compliments when I wore it again, so it's back in rotation. It's not obvious in this photo but it's a wrap dress. And it's a great weight, much heavier fabric than you'd find at Target today. The length is great on me, too, falling below my knees. I love it!

Dress - Target / Shoes - Nine West

I'd been on the look-out for good navy pumps for years and finally found these this fall. I love them! The color is a really good navy - not too light, not too dark, an obvious blue - never to be mistaken for black, the heel is a great height, and the silver bridle detail on the toes is really fun.

Outfit #4

I wore this to finish up my Christmas shopping. Though it's a bit cold out, I knew I'd get hot in the mall so I kept my layers light.

Jean Jacket - Gap / Dress - Target / Belt - Target (I think) / Boots - Duo Boots

I ended up adding a scarf for little warmth in the car (I ended up having to take it off halfway through shopping because I was dying of heat). I found this really cute way to loop a long scarf on Pinterest - you double up the length, pull one end through the loop, then twist the loop below that and pull the other end through the new loop. It looks better than just pulling both ends through the one loop. Hope that made sense!

Scarf - vendor at Junior League's Holiday Mart

Hope you enjoyed these outfits! Next week's post will have some more dressy outfits because it's birthday and holiday season!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Boy Bits - Part 4

It took me a while to want to date again after the big break-up with Zach. But eventually, I had to get back out there. The next boy from my past to talk about is Wolf, and along with him there are a couple other guys to mention as well.

After graduation and starting my first real job, buying my first car, I moved into an awesome apartment with two of my sorority sisters. Let the fun begin! One night a bunch of us went up to Little Bear in Evergreen to party and we ended up meeting a big group of guys who we spent the evening getting to know. The best thing about this group of guys is that two of them had also just moved into the same apartment complex we had moved into! Small world - we meet a group of guys in a different city who live literally across the parking lot from us! I actually thought they were pulling something over on us, but they weren't.

A couple of the girls paired off for some fun and dancing and I did the same. The boy I liked for the night was Kyle. We had a lot of fun together and he ended up being the guy who had me jump back into the dating pool.

Kyle and I ended up spending the weekend together and we had a lot of fun. But he wasn't one of the guys who lived here; he was just visiting from Salt Lake City. The whole group of guys was from a Air National Guard unit from SLC, and some of them were temporarily stationed out here. There was no way the thing with Kyle would ever be more than just that weekend and that was just fine with me. I didn't need nor want something serious after Zach. Though Kyle went back home, my group of girlfriends still hung out with the other guys pretty frequently. In fact, I ended up being really good friends with two guys - Wolf and Chris, and would go out with them a lot. (Wolf is his last name, and I don't usually call people by their last names, but he never went by his first name, so Wolf it was.)

One evening Chris, Wolf, and I were going to meet a bunch of people at a bar in Wash Park and Wolf asked what was happening with me and Kyle. This was a couple weeks after Kyle had left and we had never talked about him before, so I was kind of surprised. I told him that nothing was going on with him. Why would there be? He lived in Salt Lake and I was here... Wolf seemed totally shocked. He said something to the effect of - if certain people had known that, things might be different. I didn't totally get what he meant right then, but later that night Wolf let it be known that he liked me. It was a good thing because I actually liked him, too, but had never made a move because I thought it might be weird after the weekend I spent with Kyle. Guess we were in the same boat.

Me & Wolf - not a great pic, but one of the few I have of us

After that night, Wolf and I started dating. There were some really great aspects to dating him. He was another one of those genuinely nice guys. He got along with everybody and had a ton of friends who all loved him and respected him. He was not shy about his feelings for me and would demonstrate his affections without reluctance. One of my favorite memories of that was from a night we were out at a bar near our apartment complex. Wolf was sitting down and I was standing next to him while we talked to one of my friends. I put my arm around his shoulder and instead of putting his arm around my waist, he wrapped his arm around one of my legs, between my thighs - a totally intimate way of touching. No one would ever mistake that we were just friends with such a touch.

Wolf and his roommate lived across the parking lot, so that was incredibly convenient - we didn't have to go far at all to be with each other. He liked to go out as much as I did, and there were numerous parties at his apartment or mine. He was attentive to me when we were with his friends or out in a group, always checking on me, making sure I had a drink, giving me a kiss, etc.

It was at one of those parties at his apartment when I had another of those totally memorable kisses. (You first have to understand that though Wolf was not a passive person by any means, I was the one who made most of the first moves in our relationship.) I was just coming back from the bathroom and Wolf met me in the hallway. He put his arm out across the hall, stopping me from passing. I just leaned up against the wall and looked at him. He put his other arm on the other side of me, caging me in. He pressed the length of his body against mine without moving his hands, and gave me a seriously passionate kiss. The kind that takes away your breath and makes your heart pound and your knees weak. Then he stepped back and went back to the party without saying anything. It was incredibly hot. It took me a minute to compose myself enough to return. :)

But there was a not so great aspect to dating him, too. He was only here temporarily - his real home was Salt Lake City. He went back there often. Sometimes that meant he missed important events here. He wasn't here for Christmas or New Years Eve. In fact, I ended up taking Chris to a friend's Christmas party since Wolf wasn't here. And because he was gone so much, I was left feeling unsure about exactly where our relationship stood some of the time. When he was here, we were obviously together. All of my and his friends knew it - we were a part of each other's lives. But when he was in SLC, I didn't know what he was doing. I didn't know if he was seeing someone else there. But I didn't ever ask him to clarify. Therefore, I didn't know if I should see other people. And I wasn't exactly trusting after Zach. I always wanted more from Wolf, but was too gun-shy to ask for it. I just went along with what we did have.

As the ANG contract here wrapped up, Wolf started spending less and less time in Denver and more in Salt Lake. He moved out of his apartment and into an extended stay hotel. I didn't see him as often, which was hard for me. But I still hung out with Chris quite a bit because he had become a good friend over the months, and he didn't go back to Salt Lake anywhere as often as Wolf did. Eventually, Chris and Wolf's job in Denver ended completely and they both moved back to Salt Lake. I kept in touch with Chris - it was easy because we were just good friends. I tried to keep in touch with Wolf, but it was just too difficult when I wanted more from him.

I let him go.

I truly believe this was a huge mistake. I wish I would have tried harder with him.

That summer, a couple months after they moved away, Chris came back to Denver to visit. We ended up meeting up for drinks, hanging out in his hotel catching up, and one thing led to another... I honestly don't know why we did what we did, but... we did. Neither of us had ever expressed any attraction to each other, we were just good friends. But it's not like either of us was cheating on somebody, either. After all, Wolf and I hadn't been together for a couple months by this time. I'm not trying to make excuses, but I think we were both just lonely and we were comfortable with each other. Sometimes a good friend can fill a void. But I still felt guilty.

Me & Chris - again, not a great pic...
I guess Chris felt guilty, too. Because he ended up telling Wolf what happened between us. Wolf called me up ranting and raving. He was pissed! Which didn't make a ton of sense to me, since he hadn't made a huge effort with me since he moved away. Why should he care who I got together with? But he did care and now he said he was done with me. Meanwhile, I had already thought we were done.

I think that if Wolf and I had tried harder, and I hadn't fooled around with Chris, we might have been able to create something together, even living in different states. But he said some really ugly things to me and I hurt his pride. We couldn't get past that and we went our separate ways. Chris and I agreed that his friendship and working relationship with Wolf was more important so we said goodbye to each other, too.

I never heard from either of them again.

Damn. The end of this is totally depressing. I honestly look back on my time with Wolf and Chris mostly with affection. It's not all sadness. Really.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

So a lot of the bloggers who participate in The Pleated Poppy's link-up seem to post more than just their Wednesday outfits. I like that. Most of the time my other outfits are better than what I actually wore on Wednesday, so I started taking pics on other days, too. Without further delay, here's what I wore:

Outfit #1

I'm not afraid of white jeans in winter! Wore this to work and shopping. I had been looking for a chambray shirt forever - I'm incredibly picky about the color and the quality of the fabric and finally found one that met all my requirements.

Shirt - Land's End - $45
Jeans - J. Jill - Old
Belt - Land's End - $20 online sale

slightly closer photo of my cutie birds necklace
Necklace - H&M - Old
Cami - CAbi - Old

I love the trend of stacking bracelets!
Chunky one nearest my hand - vendor at Junior League's Holiday Mart - $18
Bangle with flowers nearest my cuffs - Stella & Dot - old
All the others - Claire's - old

Boots - - $300
I love these boots with a passion. This company customizes calf sizes, so if you need wide calf boots (like me) or even narrow calf boots, they can do it. They have great styles, lots of options, and are really great quality. The total customization is a nice change from other "wide calf" options. Well worth the price to me.

Outfit #2

Another work outfit. Told you I didn't usually dress up. But I just love this sweater. :)

Sweater - Rewind via Kohl's (juniors section) - $22 (sale, orig. $44)
Jeans - J. Jill - old
Boots - - $300

Seriously. How cute is this hootie?!?

Outfit #3
Finally figured out how to take a better picture of myself!
I wore this to two different holiday parties in the last couple weeks. I originally bought a different skirt for the parties, but couldn't get it to style as I had imagined it. I found this dress on sale and it turned out to be exactly the right thing! I love the color, the pattern of the weave, the slight shine of the fabric, the style... I could go on and on about it.

Dress - Kirna Zabete for Target - $20 (sale from $45 - I think)
Tights - Assets via Target - old
Shoes - Nine West - old
Purse - Kate Spade via Nordstrom Rack - $120

Closer picture of the necklace that I got about a billion compliments on. It's so sparkly that it doesn't photograph well. Also, I'm in love with this lipstick. I'm really picky about lipstick and don't usually wear it because I can't handle either the stickiness or the scent or the flavor. Sometimes all three, but this one is great in all respects.

Necklace - Target (!) - $30
Lipstick - Plum Wine Sonia Kashuk via Target - $15 

Outfit #4

Wore this to work, hopeful that I would get a call about a job offer. Sadly, I did not. (Yet.) But it's still a great skirt that I got for a steal.

Top - Inc via Macy's - old
Skirt - Nordstrom Collection - $50 (sale from $168!)
Tights - Assets via Target - old
Shoes - Coach - old
Necklace - Stella & Dot - old

Here's a better pic of the fabric of the skirt. It's a fabulous tweed with lots of colors in it - navy, black, brown, tan. The waist is banded in leather and it has an exposed zipper on the back. It's fully lined so it's not clingy at all. I usually stay away from straight skirts as they never fit me correctly, but this one is really good. And with all those colors in it, quite versatile, too. And I seriously can't pass up that kind of deal! :)

I hope you liked seeing more than one outfit. It takes a lot of work, but I think it's fun!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Seven Quick Takes Friday

1. I have finally jumped on the bandwagon that is Gone Girl. Though I've had the book in my Kindle forever, I'm just now getting around to reading it. I'm only about a third of the way in and I have no idea how this is going to end. Usually by this point in a book, I have a good indication of how it's all going to play out, or at least some pretty strong suspicions, and I have my favorite characters. But this book... I'm at a loss. One chapter I think, "Damn, you're a harpy wife." The next chapter I think, "Fucking bastard husband!" Then, "You are seriously crazy pants!" Some of the reviews I've read have said they were disappointed in the ending, but I'm trying to keep an open mind. I'll let you know what I think when I'm done with it.

2. I have been buying most of my baked goods at the Entemanns factory store. Nothing has anything wrong with it - it's not about to expire or beat to shit. It's not weird flavors or something. It's just cheaper. And it's stuff I'd buy in the store. My super crisp english muffins are literally half the price they would be in Safeway.

3. I'm addicted to books. And buying them from Amazon, delivered immediately to my Kindle, with a card that is saved online so I don't have to enter any information makes is SUPER easy to buy, buy, buy. I guess there are worse things to be addicted to. Right?

4. I've come to that time in my life where I buy more Christmas presents for children than anybody else. It's a little weird. And speaking of, I really need to get on that Christmas buying. Before yesterday I had only bought two gifts, and usually by this time I'm practically done with my shopping!

5. This is a serious confession - I like Yanni. I really do. I like listening to his music when I need to relax. It's quite soothing.

6. And speaking of music, the other day I was listening to a radio show that was doing a retro lunch hour. One of the songs they played was a Depeche Mode song that was popular when I was in high school (maybe as old as 8th grade). Am I really that old now that music from my relative youth is considered retro?

7. I'm going to change this post to be Five Quick Takes Friday. I like the alliteration of the title better. :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

I'm linking up with The Pleated Poppy again for What I Wore Wednesday. The link to her blog can be found to the right - check out all the other blogger's Wednesday outfits! Though I'm not too special today, here it is...

Tee - Rebecca Beeson
Scarf - H&M
Jeans - Levi's
Shoes - Anne Klein via DSW

Here's a better photo of the colors

These jeans are seriously some of my favorites, but they're getting to be too big. Even after putting them in the dryer for the first time in their life and trying (and failing!) to shrink them a bit. I'll try to find a similar pair in a smaller size, but I have a feeling I'll have to compromise.

The shoes are super comfortable and are versatile enough to be dressed up or down. I love the fringe and bows at the stubby pointy toe, they have a little kitten heel, and are a wonderful taupe suede. I haven't water-proofed them yet, so they're still fair-weather shoes.

Honestly, I think the scarf is a little springy, but I don't have many options at John's and it's been warm enough here to not seem like winter yet. So, spring scarf in December it is!

I got the top at either Nordstrom Rack or Costco. I know - such completely different stores, but I've had it forever and I cannot remember where I bought it. It's quite thin, so I'm wearing a tank beneath it. I love the neckline - a deep scoop that's a little gathered.

Stay tuned for next week's outfit!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

My cousin Lisa is participating in a What I Wore Sunday blog link-up and I thought it sounded really fun. But I have no idea what a blog link-up is. And my Sunday outfits are rarely more than pajamas, so I decided to do it my way and do it on Wednesday! :)

pardon the poor picture quality - I have to take my own pic using the closet door mirror!

Shirt - Target $25
Pants - Target $28
Belt - Coach (old)
Shoes - Coach (old)

I've been contemplating green pants for forever and I finally bit the bullet and bought some. I honestly would have preferred a more kelly green color, but this teal color is omni-present out there right now. The first pair I contemplated was from Talbots, but I couldn't fathom spending $80 on trendy pants that I wasn't sure I'd love. I found these at Target the other day and I'm pretty pleased with them. And you can't beat the price. I had to size up so they'd fit my thighs correctly and now the waist is super big (story of my life!). But I think I like them enough to pay to get the waist tailored. Also, these are ankle length pants and hit me exactly where I want them to, but I can't imagine that they'd be long enough for anybody much taller than me - I'm only 5'-4".

I bought the top to pair with a striped skirt and haven't been able to wear them together yet. But I really like it; it's silky and flattering and polka dots are fun! You can't see it very well, but it has a really cute neck tie up by one shoulder and pearl buttons on the cuffs. It is a little boxy though, so I belted it with one of my favorite belts.

I actually dressed up for the "office" today. I had to run some errands, go to the Design Center, and meet a guy about John's car. Plus I have a Junior League meeting tonight, so I wanted to look nice. Honestly, I don't always dress this nice for the office - on Monday I didn't even change out of my pajamas!

UPDATED: Lisa encouraged me to link-up with another blogger who does a "What I Wore Wednesday", so I did! There are almost 300 people who have linked up with The Pleated Poppy and now I'm there, too! The button to get to her blog is over on the right side. You should check out her and all the other bloggers Wednesday outfits!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

On Saturday. I got distracted yesterday and forgot that it was Friday. To make up for forgetting, this will be a picture filled post. :)

1. Once in a while, something from Pinterest actually works out! I saw a pin for a really pretty nail polish and amazingly, it was a current color! I actually found it at Target and the color turns out exactly as expected. I love it!

Essie Bahama Mama

2. I just read a really cute book - Awkward Moments with Men - Stories About the Sex We Can't Live Without by Shannon Lee Miller & Megan Leigh Byrd. It's short essays from their dating lives. Some stories are really funny, a few are kind of sad. I see a little bit of myself sometimes. And it's almost affirming to see that even the beautiful women who wrote this book had dating horror stories, like the rest of us. The book is only $2.99 on Kindle right now. I highly recommend it.

3. Recently Michelle and I went to the Jackson Browne concert. A young girl opened for him and she was fabulous! Her name is Sara Watkins. Jackson sang with her, she sang with Jackson. I really love her voice. This is the video for one of the songs on her Sun Midnight Sun album. Seriously, check her out.

4. Sometimes when I'm reading a book I don't like the clothes the author has dressed the characters in, so I change them. For example, in this one book, the main character always wears a plum shift dress. Like wears it way too much. And the characters talk about how sexy it is. I don't think a shift dress is especially sexy at all! So in my head, I've changed the dress to be a wrap dress. Now that is a sexy dress. Right? Another time, a character was wearing cut-off jean shorts. A guy. A guy with a lot of money and tons of style. No friggin way. I know he was dressed down at the time, but that just wouldn't have happened with the character I had in my head. So I changed them to worn-out cargo shorts. Much better.

5. I will never have a white ceramic sink in the kitchen. Stainless steel all the way. John has two white sinks in his kitchen - both the main sink and the prep sink. They show absolutely every speck of dirt and I feel like I'm constantly cleaning them. I feel like I'm going to scratch them with the movement of dishes or silverware in them. I hate them. Really. It's almost a passionate feeling. :)

6. Sometimes I don't get my blog numbers. I'm not trying to reach a ton of people. I just wanted an outlet to write a little bit about my life. But sometimes a post will get unexpected attention, and sometimes a post will get crazy attention. For example, my posts get somewhere between 20-50 reads. (Again, not a ton, and that's okay.) My Fifty Shades of Grey book reviews got over 100, so did my post about September 11 and my post about the lightbulb debate (almost 200). Pretty good. Then my Shadow of Night book review got over 300! Whoa! But my post about my meth addict neighbor has gotten over 3000! Ridiculousness! It totally screws with my stats; I have no idea how people are finding my other posts because the form is full of meth addict stuff. Weird, right?

7. Since living at John's, I watch most of my shows on Hulu. They still have some commercials and one of the commercials was a plug for their very own show Battleground.

It looked really interesting, so I added the episodes to my queue. Here's the description:

In Hulu's first original scripted series, Battleground is a workplace dramedy set in the world of political campaigns. Head campaign strategist Chris "Tak" Davis and his staff strive to win a Senate seat for their underdog candidate in a race with national consequences.It takes place in Wisconsin, a real battleground state, where Tak and his team manipulate the 24-hour news cycle, new media, and social networking to navigate the unpredictable ups and downs of state politics. All the while, a documentary crew exposes the behind-the-scenes chaos of idealistic twenty-somethings trying to make a difference.

Here's the trailer:

I was hooked after the first few minutes. Really good show. No idea what the future is, if they're going to have a second season with the same cast or not, but I really enjoyed the show. And I really enjoy the guy who plays the main character, Tak Davis. His name is Jay Hayden and he is HOT. Not only that, but he's a good actor, too. He portrays a range of emotions in the show and does so believably. I hope to see him on a more highly viewed show soon as I think he really deserves it. (One of the girls on the show is now on Chicago Fire...) Here's one last photo of Jay...

Friday, November 16, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

I read a couple blogs that have been doing this and I really like it, so I'm copying them!

1. Interviewing is hard. I have a new found respect for all the people I've interviewed over the years for Junior League's Board of Directors. You think you've prepped enough, you've gotten an idea of what they're going to ask you from your friend, you've gone over potential questions and witty thorough answers in your head...and it's still not enough. You forget all those great words that were tumbling around in your head and talk with your hands too much.

2. My dog is getting old. She can't jump up on things like she used to. She can't hear or see very well anymore. She acts like a crotchedy old man most of the time. It makes me sad to think about it.

3. I love fall - the colors the leaves turn, the smell of fire (from a fireplace) on cold nights, bundling up under the blanket, hot tea. But I sure do hate raking. Add that to the list of chores I would pay someone else to do.

4. Denver is really a small town. You never know who you're going to encounter again, so make sure you are always nice and don't burn your bridges. (I'll expand on this another day.)

5. I'm super excited to have booked a trip to Portland for my birthday! I got notice from Frontier that my miles were going to expire in March and I had enough for a free flight, so PDX here I come!

6. Living in John's house has been interesting. Parts of it are wonderful and parts are not. I hate the yardwork (see #3 above) and the neighborhood isn't as friendly a community as I thought it would be. In apartment complexes, everybody says hello and I knew all the dogs names, but I was here for over a month before somebody said hello to me (sometimes not even a hello back when I said it first) and very few people let the dogs say hi to each other. But I do like the space and the quiet. His kitchen is fabulous, even if I don't like where his silverware drawer is.

7. Being without TV has been a serious adjustment, but I think I've handled it pretty well. I definitely watch less TV and listen to more music than ever before. It was nice not being bombarded with political commercials 24-7 and it will continue to be nice not having all the Christmas commercials blasting at me. But I do feel a little disconnected. Like, I didn't realize until just this week that the final Twilight movie was coming out! Gotta get to the theater for that one!

This has been fun. I think I'll continue to do it. What do you think?

Friday, October 12, 2012

Boy Bits - Part 3

I met Zach the summer between my sophomore and junior years of college. (I'm using his real name and not altering his photos because I don't have any contact with Zach anymore, nor do we have any mutual friends.) We were both taking a summer chemistry class at Aurora Community College. (I took classes every summer so I could take a slightly lighter load during the school year.) I thought he was really cute, but I didn't like his best friend, Chris, at all; he was really irritating and omni-present. And I thought Zach's shorts were too short. :) He told me later that he thought I was cute, too, but thought I was married because I wore a silver band on my left ring finger. Hello?!? I was 20 years old! No way!

Zach's fraternity picture

Despite his slightly poor fashion choices, I liked Zach and he obviously liked me, too. We flirted with each other constantly. He made sure to select the lab table behind mine, we'd always hang out during our breaks from class. He also went to CSU and was in a fraternity, but not a fraternity my friends and I frequented, so I'd never seen him up there.

But I could never get him alone. Chris was always there. Except one day when he finally wasn't. Zach walked me out to the parking lot and Chris was suspiciously not there. That's when Zach finally asked me out. He did good - he brought me flowers, took me to dinner, then to a movie. We sat in the car and talked for hours. From then on, we were inseparable. We had so much to talk about. We seemed to be a good match for each other. I was determined to be incredibly open about my past with Zach from the beginning and if it screwed things up, then we obviously weren't meant to be together.

See, Zach seemed to be a bit of a good guy. And not just a nice guy, good guy, but the type of good guy who had never done drugs, didn't really drink, followed all the laws, probably hadn't had one-night stands. The kind of guy who might really look down on a girl who had done those things. I mean, he was incredibly involved in Aurora Teen Court, was planning on going to law school, and wanted to be a prosecutor - wanted to uphold the law. But when I told him about my past, he was actually pretty cool about it. He needed to know that that part of my life was over, but he didn't really judge me about it. He told me he wasn't perfect, either.

Zach and I fell in love. It felt so different to both of us than any of our previous relationships ever felt. We talked about all of our feelings with each other, all of our fears, all our dreams, all our thoughts. We talked about the future - the immediate future when we both moved back up to Fort Collins and the far away future, when we'd get married and be together for the rest of our lives. It wasn't an "if", it was "when" - we were so sure of our future together. We talked about whether we wanted kids or not, which one of us would be in charge of paying our bills, what our dreams for our careers were - literally everything. It was awesome and scary all at the same time.

Zach & I at Kate's cabin for a party weekend

We assimilated into each other's college lives pretty easily. Since we were both Greek, we understood that part, and were able to get our houses to do things together. Our friends got along well, some of my friends even dated some of his friends. We were always together. I spent more nights at his house than my own. We had an amazing sex life. :) We were very passionate about each other. He would write me pages-long love letters and send me cards and flowers all the time. He was a great boyfriend by my standards.

Our biggest problem was jealousy. I've always been a jealous type, but had never been on the other end of the emotion. Zach's jealousy was very difficult for me to deal with. The first big fight we had was when an old friend of Zach's (who happened to be a member of the fraternity where I had "kissed" a lot of the guys I've mentioned before) told Zach, in graphic detail, about some of my hijinks there. It was at a party and Zach was drinking, he was hurt and probably a little embarrassed to hear about his girlfriend's behavior, even if it was way in the past. And though I had told Zach about my past, I didn't go into the kind of detail Jason did. Why would I? Nobody wants or needs to hear that shit about their current girlfriend. I still don't know why Jason told him. Anyway, when I got to the party, Zach was drunk and pissed. He yelled and screamed. I think he was pissed that his good friend knew about my past indiscretions. Not that I in fact had past indiscretions - but that his friend knew.

His way of "getting back" at me was to flirt with another girl at the party, Josette. (The only reason why I remember her name is because I knew her growing up.) She would continue to flirt with Zach past that night, either not realizing how serious we were or not caring. It pissed me off to no end. She was a constant thorn in my side.

The other bad jealousy situation happened at my sorority formal. Some of my sorority sisters ended up going with Zach's brothers; I think we ended up with a group of eight. Both Ben and Jarell were there platonically and just wanted to have fun. Anybody who knew me back then knew that I loved to dance and would do so at every opportunity. Zach - not so much. So I danced up a storm with Ben and Jarell this night, giving Zach a seriously unnecessary case of apoplexy. He was so pissed that it was ridiculous. He made me cry right there at the dinner table and I sat with him for the rest of the night, not dancing, not really having fun. (In some of the other photos, you can tell I've been crying and he's got a death grip on me.)

In the limo on the way to my sorority formal

But we had a ton of fun together. We went to parties, date functions, sorority and fraternity formals together. We went on trips together - to Kate's cabin with a huge group of our sorority sisters and his fraternity brothers, we went to Salt Lake City to visit his mother. We spent lots of time with our families in Denver. We did the whole 21st birthday hoopla with each other and then took care of each other in the aftermath.

Mormon Temple grounds in Salt Lake City
Zach became my best friend as well as my lover and constant companion. I really couldn't imagine my life without him. Things were good, I felt complete. I think he felt complete, too.

Visiting Zach's Mom in Utah
But then came the night that almost destroyed us.

I was sleeping at his place and he came home from a night out with the guys. He was drunk. Probably more so than I'd ever seen him before. He kept trying to have sex with me and I wasn't interested since he was so wasted. I tried to leave and he hit me. It wasn't exactly a punch and it wasn't exactly a slap. It wasn't on my face, it was on my arm. It shocked me more than it hurt. I don't think he would have done anything more serious, but I wasn't sticking around to find out. I left Zach crying and begging me to stay.

When I got back to my sorority house, I went straight to Kate's room, crawled into bed with her, and cried to her until I fell asleep. 

The next day, our shared phone rang off the hook with Zach calling constantly. We finally had to turn it off. I went about my day, distraught about what happened, but determined to not talk to him. He started calling the house phone, but I wouldn't take his calls. He even showed up at the house, but I wouldn't go downstairs to talk to him. Nobody but Kate knew what happened, so I'm sure the situation was confusing to all the girls. 

I think it took a day or two, but Zach eventually sent Ben to talk to me. Ben said Zach was confused, didn't remember what happened other than we argued and I left him, and now I wouldn't talk to him. When I told Ben what happened, he was shocked and apologetic for Zach. 

Eventually, Zach and I got together to discuss what happened. He was a disaster. My not talking to him was slowly killing him. He promised to never let anything like that happen again. He loved me, he didn't want to hurt me. Now, I know this is what every abuser tells the object of his abuse, but  we were different. I truly believed it wouldn't happen again and we stayed together.

Zach never hit me again. Violence was most definitely not a part of our relationship. (This is not a story I've told many people.)

Zach's formal
We got through the rest of the year and decided that we both wanted to stay in Fort Collins for the summer. Kate and I decided to move into his fraternity house, under the guise of sharing a room, but really I was living with Zach and Kate lived next door.

One of my favorite memories is from that summer. The Delt house had really narrow, but really tall bedrooms. All the guys had lofts where their beds were and living rooms down below. That meant our bed was right under the roof. One night it poured. I mean, a serious get-your-Ark, crazy loud thunderstorm. Zach and I were cozy in bed together, listening to the rain for hours, in each other's arms. It was amazing to be so close to the sound of the rain, but feel completely safe. I love falling asleep to the rain even today.

Kate and I planned to go to England for something that summer (class of some sort?), but I didn't want to be away from Zach, so I backed out of the trip. Instead, Zach and I got engaged. I knew it would happen eventually, just not as soon as it did. We had looked at rings. He'd already lavaliered me and given me diamond earrings, but I was more than a little surprised when he proposed.

We were celebrating our anniversary with a nice dinner and some quality time in Denver. He'd given me a gift of perfume, and like a spoiled brat, I was a little disappointed. I'd expected jewelry of some sort. Zach wanted to walk around a park that had a special place in his heart, but it was pouring rain, so we cuddled in the car instead. He was acting very weird, which I can now chalk up to nervousness. Eventually, he decided the rain wasn't going to stop and we should just make a run for it to the gazebo in the middle of the park. I literally asked him if he was crazy, to which he told me to be nice.

So, like a good girlfriend, I followed his crazy-ass through the pouring rain to the gazebo. He was so happy that we were out there. Well, until another couple sought refuge from the rain under the same gazebo. Zach very loudly bitched and moaned about their presence and gave them the stink eye until they left. Finally we were alone.

Zach stood in front of me and asked me to close my eyes. Then he told me all the things he loved about me, about us, told me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me, and then asked me to marry him. My eyes popped open and he was down on one knee in front of me holding a beautiful engagement ring. I was shocked, flabbergasted, excited... all the other emotions one might have in this situation. Of course I said yes. We were both crying and kissing, Zach picked me up and hugged me until I couldn't breathe. He had done the traditional thing and asked my parents for permission a couple weeks prior. How I missed that, I'll never know. On the drive back to Fort Collins we called our loved ones to tell them the good news.

We knew we were going to wait for a while to get married. One, we wanted to graduate first, so that meant we for sure were going to wait for at least a year. Two, we then decided that we didn't want to have too many humongous life changes all at once - both of us graduating, Zach starting law school, me starting a job, and getting married - so we decided that we'd get married two years from our engagement. A long time to be engaged, I know.

At the end of the summer, we decided we didn't want to be apart, we still wanted to live together. Though it wasn't an issue for Zach, my sorority required everybody to live in. Instead of figuring out a way to make it work, I deactivated from my sorority so that we could get an apartment together. Quitting the sorority would prove to be one of the worse mistakes of my life.

I essentially had nothing besides school and Zach to take up my time anymore. I didn't have the girls, the house, all of the extracurricular activities that had once kept me busy. I relied on Zach for the majority of my social activities. It wasn't good for us.

Zach started pulling away from me and all the responsibility. And the more he did, the more I held on to him. Which pushed him away even more. It was a vicious cycle. Eventually, he decided he needed more space and moved out. Then he decided he needed more freedom, needed to "live" more, wanted to date other people, so we broke up.

I've already talked about the depression I went through and the details of our break-up, so I won't go through all that again. It was a very tough time for me.

Eventually we both graduated and went our separate ways. I found out that he married the girl he dated immediately after me. They got married before he and I had planned to get married. A couple years later, I found out that they divorced. He and I got in contact after that. This was before the days of Facebook and I think we found each other on He told me all about his and Amber's break-up - she couldn't handle being in California, away from her family, while he went to law school. He told me that he held onto my engagement ring for some reason and then Amber found it and had a hissy. He never knew what she did with it, but he still had to pay the thing off. (Teehee!)

He told me that he wished we had stayed together because our relationship was so awesome; the best he'd ever had. He thought we would have made it work. If he'd married me, we wouldn't have gotten divorced. I didn't agree and told him so. I told him that I think we would have ended up divorced, too.

We stayed in touch for a while, but then we both started dating other people and late night phone calls with your ex-fiance just isn't kosher. So, while we very, very occasionally emailed, we essentially lost touch.

After another year or so, I ended up emailing him about some news story about his fraternity. I got a response back from a woman named Jessica, claiming to be Zach's new wife. She wanted to know who I was and essentially asked me to go away. She and Zach were happy newlyweds, were buying their first house, and she didn't want me to be in contact with him anymore. I respected her wishes.

Then came Facebook, and like any ex-girlfriend would, I looked Zach up. I wasn't going to "friend" him, I just wanted to see what he looked like nowadays. His picture is with his wife. But her name isn't Jessica. And they only recently got married. Way after that whole email/Jessica situation. So, it looks like he's on his third marriage. Which, honestly, I think is kind of icky. And it makes me even more positive that we wouldn't have worked out. I just don't know that he has it in him.

I actually held onto the love letters and cards that Zach gave me. My sister asked me why I'd want to have those memories and I told her that they make me realize how good a relationship can be, how much two people can love each other, how well someone once treated me. Though our relationship didn't end up great, it really was awesome for a while. And that's what I want again. That kind of love is what I want to find and experience again.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Emmy's Fashion Review - Part 3

Let's get this thing wrapped up, shall we?

This here is Allison Williams, she's on Girls and is Brian Williams (from NBC Nightly News) daughter. She's super cute and I really like her character on the show. This dress is fabulous on her. I absolutely love the color and it's incredibly flattering to her body. It's not wrinkled like some other taffeta dresses. I like the on-trend peplum and though it's not gotten great reviews, I like the sculptural bodice, too. Good job for her first awards show.

Oh my gawd, My Girl is all grown up! This is Anna Chulmsky, can you believe it?!? How fabulous does she look?!? I think this grey lace dress is stunning on her. Not too young, not too old, just the right amount of maturity for her. It fits her really well, it's not showing an obscene amount of cleavage or leg. The young starlets who are still growing up in the industry should use this as a guide of how to dress for the red carpet as they grow up. I  also really like the scalloped train that follows the design of the lace. But, I don't like her shoes. I think they're a bit boring and too light of a color.

I love Kerry Washington. She seems genuinely nice. If you haven't watched her show Scandal, you should check it out. It's smart, fast-paced, drama-filled, fun. This dress didn't photograph very well, but when it was in motion on the red carpet, it was stunning. I love the blingy-ness and the color was very nice with her skin tone. I think her hair was a little boring, but I agree with the minimalist jewelry since the dress was so sparkly.

More sparkles! I don't love this dress on Jane Krakowski. I think she looks like she's suffocating and can't move her torso because it's way too tight on her. But I think the dress itself is stunning. I love the color. I love how the size of the beading/sequins goes from small at the top to large at the bottom. I think it's really successful and beautiful design. Gorgeous! Sparkly!

I don't love this dress on Lena Dunham, of Girls. I think it's frumpy and not the most flattering thing she could have chosen. (It looked especially bad from the side.) But I do love her hair and makeup. One of my gripes with her on the show was her unflattering hair and makeup. Now she's cut her hair into a cute almost pixie cut and highlighted her eyes nicely. I hope she does more of this on the next season of her show.

Lucy Liu's dress has gotten a range of reviews. I loved it. I loved how different it was (it was metal!), I liked the structure of it, I actually thought it made it more interesting that it was essentially see through. But not grotesquely so, really you could see her legs when light would shine through the skirt. It was just sexy and revealing enough. I like her curled side pony tail - simple but not boring. Well done!

I haven't seen Sarah Paulson here in a long time, but I've always loved her and don't think she gets enough credit as an actress. Her hair is darker now and I think it looks great on her. And though I'd like to hike the dress up an inch on her chest, I really like it. I like the black belt, I like the color, I like the appliqued flowers on the tulle. It's just the right amount of detail and volume. The accessories are appropriate. Nicely done, Sarah!

Again, I've heard the gamut of reviews for Sofia Vergara's dress. Some people thought it was the same-old, same-old for her. Yes, we know you have a great body and dresses fit you spectacularly, blah blah blah. But others, me included, love it. I actually think it is a little different for her. She doesn't usually wear a completely beaded dress, nor does she wear straps like this. She seems to like silk and satin and strapless or one-shoulders. And though everything she wears on the red carpet fits her stunningly and she doesn't shy away from showing her body, this seems somehow slinkier than her usual. I absolutely love the color and the details in the beading. And I think the peak-a-boo cut-out on the back is super sexy. But she's completely contained, she's not showing too much. (Except for when the zipper broke and she exposed her ass!) Overall, it's one of my favorites.

My second most favorite dress was Nicole Kidman's. Besides her, only Gwyenth Paltrow could have pulled this off. She wears the column sheath like it was made for her, the bright white is flawless, and I love the detail on the front. I liken it to angel wings. Really, really gorgeous in general, and on her. I like that the rest of her is simple, from her hair to her jewelry. I don't think you need much more with this.

And lastly, my favorite of the night. Ginnifer Goodwin's funky-fun, beautiful orange concoction. I love the vine/flower-like applique in orange on nude. I think this was the most successful of the high-low hemlines. I think her accessories contrast nicely - the gun metal color a nice counterpoint to the orange. I actually even like her shoes, though some have thought they're too matchy. I'd rather they match than be wrong or ugly. The fit was fabulous and Ginnifer has just enough attitude to pull this dress off. Well done, Ginnifer!

That's it, that's all! Well, until the next awards show!