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The Fall Trends I'm Loving This Year

To be honest, I'm not really one to stay ahead of the sartorial curve - I like what I like and you're gonna have a hard time convincing me otherwise - but Fall Fashion Week always piques my curiosity. You see, some of the same trends always make it back into the rotation and maybe this time there's a new spin on it. But then you see things that are completely this year's new "it" color.

The Fall Trends I'm Loving This Year

Gothic Romance

Goth slinks its way back in the fall scene year after year and each time I do a little bit of a happy dance because I love seeing my favorite fashion in every single store from late August to the end of October.

This year, it's all about pairing dark pieces with romantic silhouettes - think ruffly skirts and dresses with Doc Martens. Gorgeous lace with chains and spikes. Hard and soft, together in one of the most magical combinations....

Monochrome Pistachio

I love purple. I love red. Sometimes even or…
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Elevated Elvira

A simple black dress, a wicked winged liner, and a bold red lip bring this understated Goth Queen look into the office without raising too many eyebrows.

On Wednesday's We Wear Black

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A Spoonful of Sugar

You likely already have the collared white blouse and black midi skirt to comprise this easy Mary Poppins look. A trip to the local thrift store will help you procure a cute red bow and a black hat -- but don't forget a frilly parasol and oversized bag!


Youthful, bright, and totally mod. A …

What to do in Duluth, MN for Three Days

Duluth is considered one of Minnesota's most beautiful cities for a reason. Located on Lake Superior, Duluth is a major port city and accessible to ocean vessels via the Great Lakes Waterway. It is home to one of the most scenic lake-front trails in Minnesota and one of it's more recognizable features is the beautiful aerial lift bridge that allows vessels of all sizes into the harbor.

While it continues to be a thriving port city, Duluth saw most of its growth in the late 1800's with iron ore mining. The expansion of the railroad and the boom in lumber kept the city on the map and today its population is estimated at around 86,000 - making it the 4th largest city in the state of Minnesota.

I spent my 30th birthday in Duluth and thus far it's been one of the most enjoyable three-day weekend trips I've ever taken. Everything listed below could easily be fit into a three-day period if you're as ambitious about sightseeing as I am. Otherwise, here are some great …

The Darkling Tag - Take Two

A few Octobers ago, I took on the Darkling Tag - a series of questions aimed at illuminating all the dark nooks and crannies of a "Goth" personality. It's been a while and I've been curious as to how my responses may have changed, so I'm doing it again!

You can read the original here and then pop back to this current version.

Simple Questions: What is your favorite candle scent? - Right now, I'm loving all things lavender. I wonder if that's because I'm really stressed out these days...?Do you have a favorite book? - Bram Stoker's Dracula. Still. Forever. Are you a tea or coffee person?  - Mostly coffee, but I also enjoy tea.What is your favorite brand and color of lipstick?  - Right now I'm wearing Covergirls' EntwinedWhat is your favorite perfume/cologne? - Fun fact! I don't wear fragrances because most of them give me a headache. But I do like anything with tea tree oil or eucalyptus.Do you have a celebrity crush? - Nope. I don't …

I Finally Made The Chickpea Stew

The Spiced Chickpea Stew with Coconut and Turmeric went viral earlier this year after it was originally published in the New York Times and I can recall at least five different lifestyle bloggers who made and raved about it.

Being the contrarian that I am, I wasn't one to jump on the bandwagon.

However, with autumn fast approaching and my desire to add to my cooking repertoire suddenly at 100% now that I don't have to worry about any rigid dietary preferences, I figured I would actually give this stew a try and see if I want to keep it on rotation this season.

Spoiler alert: It's pretty amazing.

There are a couple different versions of this floating around the internet, but the linked recipe from Epicurious was the one that made the final cut. D-man (referenced in this post - *wink wink nudge nudge*) was kind enough to pick up some ingredients needed for it on his way over my place last weekend.

I attempted to cast myself as a prep cook, but I'll be honest - I've …

List of Must Read Books This Fall

Autumn is the perfect time to settle down with a book - whether you're in a study hall with a required text or on the front porch with the latest cozy mystery from a beloved series. If you're like me, maybe you don't know what to read this year or your TBR pile is so daunting you'd rather not look at it. Goodreads is a little more forgiving than that stack on my bookshelf, so let's dive right in!

Here are the books that were recommended to me by respected Twitter followers.

House of Salt and Sorrow by Erin A. Craig
"In a manor by the sea, twelve sisters are cursed.

Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor, a manor by the sea, with her sisters, their father, and stepmother. Once they were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls' lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—a…

My Autumn Bucket List

Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost is a favorite poem of mine and while it isn't exactly about autumn, the idea that those things which are perfect and beautiful are also the most fleeting seems fitting. The fall season is with us so briefly and we really only have a few short weeks to make the most of it while the weather is chilly and the leaves are vibrant.

I'm not the most active and outdoorsy person ever, so my Autumn Bucket List is probably nowhere near as exciting as yours might be, but these are a few of the things I would really like to do this year.

Attend a Fall Festival

Minnesota has no shortage of local and themed festivals during the fall months, typically kicked off with the MN State Fair and descending into a whole slew of Oktoberfests. I'd like to attend one this year!

Order a PSL

Ideally, I'd have my Pumpkin Spice Latte from a place that isn't Starbucks. It might be worth a trek back over to East Saint Paul to visit The Goat Coffeehouse.

Buy Scent…

5 Ways To Pamper Yourself This Fall

I am so ready for autumn - you have no idea. But I also recognize that this time of year can be stressful for a lot of people. It's the beginning of the school year, it's the end of the fiscal year and time to balance budgets in a lot of companies, illnesses like the flu ramp up again and Seasonal Affective Disorder rears its ugly head.

Those of you who can't fully enjoy the autumn season have my sympathy. This post is for you.

Well, it's for all of us really, but especially for you! 

Here are 5 relaxing ways you can pamper yourself this fall:

1. Start Dry Brushing

Not only is dry brushing great for exfoliating your skin, it also increases blood flow and stimulates the lymphatic system which can boost your immune system and your mood.

2. Paint Your Nails a Fall Color

Put away the creme polishes and the barely there pink and nude shades, autumn is the time to break out the vampy reds, purples, and blacks. Copper is a good choice for those wanting to stay in neutral territ…

Some More Unpopular Opinions

Can you believe this is Round 4 of my Five Unpopular Opinions series? You can find the previous three here, here and here - make sure to give them a read and fight me on any you disagree with. That's the whole point, after all.

So, your favorite internet contrarian is back with five more opinions you likely won't agree with. Let's get started:

1. Bernie Sanders is a schmuck and so are all his "bros".
2. Pumpkin Spice Lattes are actually good. (The ones from Caribou, anyways...)
3. Korean Red Pepper belongs on everything. Eggs. Mac'n'cheese. Pizza. Chocolate. EVERYTHING.
4. Summer is a terrible season.
5. Self-tanner looks horrible on most people. 

Disagree with me? Perfect!

The Indecisive Nature of Libra

Libra is said to be diplomatic, harmonious, and a lover of all things beautiful. They value intelligence, high art, and often have refined taste. Curiously, they are the only sign represented by an inanimate object (the scales) and they function best at moments of stable equilibrium or balance.

That's what all these teen magazine astrology sections would have you believe, anyways, and there's probably some truth to it. I'm a Libra after all and while I can't mould myself to 100% of these so-called Libra traits...some of it is pretty spot on.

I try to see all perspectives and analyze or present them fairly. I am the least confrontational person you will ever meet. I have a particular aesthetic I am rather fond of and enjoy surrounding myself with the quirky things I personally find pleasing and yeah, maybe I spend just a little too much on Korean skincare products. 

Here's the thing about air signs though - we're flighty. And we're insanely indecisive. 

Do I …