If you asked me, casually, what I’ve been up to lately, I’d likely mention my job as a summer camp counselor or perhaps my ongoing stresses regarding my gap year. Truthfully, it is hard to pinpoint what has been happening with me these days. This time last year, I was entangled in summer readings, college applications, and back to school preparations. I was overwhelmed. Between chapters and assignments, I was brainstorming essay ideas that I thought would determine my lifelong fate. Funny how I thought College Board was Saint Peter and the Common App was the Golden Gate. How odd it feels, a year later, to not have an education to obsess over. How odd it feels, in the present moment, to focus instead on passion projects and curiosities. Lately, I suppose, I have been doing just this—existing for pleasure instead of productivity. When I am not corralling small children or researching placements in China, I am trying out new hobbies and relishing old ones. Over the past two months, I’ve learned more about myself, what I love, and my habits than I did in the four years I spent in high school. Stripped of a productivity model and a goal to pursue, I was instead left with hours in a day that I did not have to fill with any specific activity. At first, this clothed me in a suffocating anxiety. To others, and even, sometimes, myself, my goals were my identity. Upon Summer’s arrival, I felt as if I had to shed this smothering chrysalis and start anew. I dabbled in a few of my past passions, from reading to creating art. I delved into some new ones as well— creative writing and working out. I tried out things I loved (painting), things I hated (all-nighters), and things I loved-hated (running.) I’m here, today, to share some of the things that have had a positive effect on me this summer— what I’ve been loving lately, if you will.
the new york times
I’ve recently found myself obsessed with The New York Times. I believe this new fixation began when I was staying in Chapel Hill and stumbled upon a print copy of the Style section. Inside the newspaper’s pages lay a fascinating article about Youtube as a career. Since then, I’ve been hooked. While I still rely mainly on my podcasts to get my news and politics fix, I also love the daily briefings I receive in my inbox every day. The high quality of writing is something I adore as well— a bit of daily inspiration for my own writing.
the high low podcast
Speaking of inspiration, I have been loving The High Low Podcast. Dolly Alderton and Pandora Sykes take on pop culture, news, and real, human topics in the most witty and intelligent ways. While they are currently on hiatus for the month of August, I urge you to listen to previous episodes while you wait for new ones to arrive.
americans in paris
Continuing with the podcast trend, I found myself pondering a This American Life episode recently. They reran an episode from 2000 on the topic of Americans living in Paris. I particularly loved David Sedaris and his take on the subject. He discusses how tourists will visit sites not out of passion but rather because someone told them to. I found the whole episode quite thought-provoking and all-around wonderful.
As always, I’ve been hunting down new tunes to dance to when no one is watching. While I was in a bit of a music slump for a few weeks, I have finally found a new batch of tunes to suffice for a while. Also, the tunes don’t really flow together, it’s just a fruit salad of good music.
I love basics. Maybe it’s because I work at a summer day camp where girly outfits aren’t practical, or maybe it’s because I’m into minimalist fashion right now. Either way, I can’t get over my simple tees and denim jeans. I recently purchased a white fitted t-shirt from Target. I also picked up the softest loose tee! I love pairing plain tees with a pair of skinny jeans and my AF1s. Unfortunately, I stained my white tee at summer camp, so before I can rock this fit again I’ll have to tackle that conundrum.
Oh. My. God. I am obsessed with my new pair of Adidas Nite Joggers. My interest in the shoe was originally sparked when I saw a pair on Margot Lee. However, I dislike ordering clothes online (as I enjoy the instant gratification of shopping in person), so I did not buy them at first glance. Instead, I obsessed over them until I went to Chapel Hill and saw them shining through the Finish Line display window. Naturally, I purchased them immediately. I love how this sneaker is comfortable, functional, AND cute. Plus, the pair I have is currently on sale!
This summer, I have come to the conclusion that I am most comfortable and most myself in what I call the “Sadie uniform”— an oversized graphic tee, jeans, and either my Docs, my Nite Joggers, or my AF1s. I came to this realization after the purchase of one of the ugliest (yet cutest) graphic tees I have ever seen. While at Rumors in Chapel Hill, I stumbled upon an old graphic tee with birds on it. It reminded me of something my Grandmother would wear, so I had to make the purchase. Now, I can’t stop wearing it. While it was a thrift find, Urban Outfitters has a diverse graphic tee section. Thrifted or store bought, I can’t get over the wonders of graphic tees!
I’ve recently discovered the Target brand Auden. Not only are their undies and bras SO comfortable, the brand is body positive and has a variety of sizes! I picked up a simple bralette, a real bra (shocking, as I never wear real bras), and some undies. While I am usually a lover of Aerie, Auden provides cheaper alternatives that are just as cute and comfy.
If you’re wondering where the lovely images I’ve put throughout this blog post came from, they are actually the creations of my mother! I adore the colors and patterns. Her Instagram can be found here.
For my recent birthday, I was given best moisturizer I have ever used— the Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Moisturizer. While it is on the pricier side, this product is worth it. My skin feels healthier and dewy! I usually don’t wear makeup, so this product gives my skin some extra lovin’ and makes me feel pretty.
Okay, okay. If any of you know me personally, I am so sorry for never shutting up about avocados. Truthfully, I used to hate them. When I tasted Bartaco’s guacamole, though, I was instantly hooked. Now, I’ve perfected my own avocado toast recipe that I might share on the blog later this month. Stay tuned if you’re interested!
Well, these are my loves as of late. I hope you are well, and I hope you are taking time for yourself— free from goals and productivity.