Outta Shape.

In Uncategorized on October 25, 2016 at 8:05 am

A young mom recently said that, having had her first child, she felt that “the days are long, but the years are short.”  It was an interesting and insightful comment and it made me think about my experience of time and how wacky it has been over the last year and a half, since launching my own business.  I  feel the inverse — “the days are short, but the years are long.”  (Which is curious, since so many entrepreneurs liken building a business to having a child.)  I’ve mentioned this before, but I often feel as though I’m sitting at the top of a roller coaster hill at the beginning of each day, and Mr. Magpie and I just look at each other and say: “Hang on, toots, see you at the end.”  And then it’s go go go go go go go go with hardly enough time to eat or breathe or understand how I am feeling until 6 or 7 PM or, lately, 9 or 10 PM at night.  But on the flipside, we get to the end of a month and we’re like, “Holy.crap.  This was a long, hard month.  How has it only been a month?  It feels like we’ve been working for a trillion years on end without break.”

I don’t mean this to come off as “woe is me.”  I’m keenly aware of how fortunate I am to have had the opportunity to start this business and financially support our lifestyle during this long period of taking no salary (see ya, savings).  And, I know lots of working ladies out there who work even longer days without some of the amenities I have at my disposal (hello, making my own schedule, working from home, taking my dog for 3 walks a day whenever I want to, working alongside my husband, etc.)

At any rate.  Like so many of you, whether you’re balancing children and a job or a demanding job and a workout regimen or multiple “extracurrical” demands, I’ve had to make sacrifices in some areas of my life to accommodate my intense work schedule.  I’m sad to say that my former commitment to exercise has totally fallen by the wayside :/  So bad.  I console myself by reminding myself that I typically walk my dog 2 or 3x a day for a mile a walk, so at least I’m getting some activity.  But running?  Gym time?  Yoga?  Cycling?  Pffffft.  LADEEZ, if I get a little parcel of quiet time, I’m going to be reading, taking a hot shower/bath, or relaxing in front of the TV.  Because I am TIRED.  I literally don’t know how I could muster up the energy to run after feeling like I’m run over by a freight train every day.

[Goody-two-shoes-on-my-shoulder]: But, Magpie, you could get up an hour earlier and go for a run then.

[Me]: But I am so TIRED!  I need the sleep.

[Goody-two-shoes-on-my-shoulder]: OK, then make a commitment to close up shop at 5 PM to take a little run.

[Me]: No matter what you say, I’m not gonna do it, but I’m gonna feel bad about it.

I’ve been thinking lately that adding some new workout gear to my wardrobe may drive motivation in this area and force me to get myself to the gym.  And I’ve been mega into Kourtney Kardashian’s exercise wardrobe — if you follow her on Snapchat or Insta, you’ll know she’s super fit and I’m very jealous of the idea of someone coming to my house to train me every day.  Hello, mom of THREE!?!?!?!


Goddess.  My KK inspired workout picks:

+Retro Nike sweatshirt ($70);

+Zella sheer panel leggings ($64);

+APL running shoe (love the heathered gray color — $164);

+Athleta cozy wrap sweatshirt thing ($108 — love it in the gray);

+Adidas black hat ($23);

+Nike leggings ($55 — love the logo on the waistband, so 90s, so in right now) and matching sports bra ($45);

+Lululemon sports bra ($52 — heads up, they run small);

+Zella leather-effect leggings ($64);

+Alo moto leggings (celeb pick — $110);

+Athleta half-zip — love the quilted detailing! tres chic, esp. in the black ($118);

+Nike jersey tank (love the t-back!, $35) — OR check out this seriously sexy one for $60;

+New Balance for JCrew leggings ($95) and hoodie ($95);

+Lululemon leggings (on sale for $69);

+Nike track pants ($55).

Here’s hoping…tell me your tricks for getting back on track PUHLEASE!!!!


In Black, Cocktail Dresses, Fresh Combos, Plaid, Winter Weather on October 24, 2016 at 8:37 am

On Saturday, I was running errands (Target on a Saturday close to Halloween = major regrets.  Strong pass on that idea next time.) and I realized I just felt BLAH.  I was wearing my favorite JBrand jeans and a great Mara Hoffman sweater but I just felt lackluster.  Realized I need a good trim (so I scheduled a cut and color for the week before Thanksgiving) and maybe to throw on a swipe of lipstick and, oh yeah, to add some new duds to the ol’ wardrobe.  My fall stuff had felt fresh for a few weeks but now I’m already feeling bored.  Isn’t that awful?  But it’s da truth.  Below, my top picks for sprucing up a ‘drobe:

+Scarf/poncho in oversized check ($69 — also check out this slick cape style for $98);

+Epic Isabel Marant booties ($491 — I have a FAB pair of booties from Isabel and have to say I’ve been astounded by the quality…I tend to wear my boots into the ground, but these have stood the test of time and multiple Chicago winters);

+Classic camel coat (very Grace Kelly, $245);

+Plaid scarf ($22);

+Plaid skirt ($110);

+OMG, these lace-up pumps for $138!

+Sherpa coat ($168);

+Isabel Marant booties (on sale for $297).

















+Plaid dress ($49);

+EPIC cape — you can get the back of the neck monogrammed with your name, ZOMG ($585);

+Bow toe d’orsay flats ($80);

+Frilled sweater dress ($49);

+MY BEST FIND — these $120 velvet heels!!!! ZOMG, need (Nicole P., any takers?!?!?);

+Velvet a-line dress ($115);











Dis + Dat.

In Accessories, Beauty Products, Denim on October 20, 2016 at 9:26 am

Just your run o’ the mill all over the place post on what’s been creeping through my pea brain these dayz:


I just finished the book The Couple Next Door ($18) for my book club, which has been touted as “the New Girl on the Train” and “The New Gone Girl.”  We all agreed it was pretty shoddy writing — especially the problematic representation of female roles, i.e., “the temptress next door who doesn’t want children and who seduces married men” and “the tired, mentally-unstable mother who has lost her good looks and attractiveness” — but that none of us could put it down!  Lots of twisty turny moments — a great mental vacation.  I read it in 2 days flat and it felt like a little treat — a little bowl of ice cream! — after a hard day of work.  I decided I needed another book of that ilk to save for a future day when I need a mental break, and this one ($13) came highly recommended.  We’re reading this non-fiction piece for book club next.  And, for my other book club, we’re reading the fantastic book The Silent Duchess — super quirky, super rich, lots of meta-fictional elements to contemplate.  It’s one of the more intriguing texts I’ve read this year.




This is going to sound super fangirl-ish but ever since I read that the uber chic Emily Weiss (founder of must-read beauty blog Into the Gloss and sister cosmetics brand Glossier — love their boy brow eyebrow gel/wand, and have a few friends who are VERY impressed with their affordable serum collection) only travels in cashmere sweatpants (zomg, what a luxury), I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for options.  They’re typically too pricey for my blood.  Then I found this affordable pair from Everlane ($140).  I’m going to start with the navy!




Bow-front blouses and dresses are all the rage this season (AHEM, love this button down), and these bow-bedecked sweaters ($80) felt like a unique take on the trend.  LOVE.  I like the idea of layering it on top of a white oxford with black skinnies or a black mini skirt and my Gucci mules.

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I saw the chic-est lady with her golden doodle at the dog park last week — she was wearing all black except for some cheeky leopard loafers.  Along these lines:




I intend to recreate with these $128 loafers from Madewell.

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I’d been on the hunt for a good fall candle for awhile.  I’m slightly picky/weird about candle scents — I really cannot stand all these pumpkin chai spice latte scents; they all feel so manufactured and sickly sweet.  In general, I’m not huge into candles that smell like food (vanilla, cinnamon, cake, etc.)  I popped into the Diptyque up in Bucktown over the weekend and discovered their Feu de Bois ($62) — basically, burning wood.  It is so cozy and rich — even a little masculine.  Mr. Magpie loves it.  SOLD.



This pleated, faux-leather skirt is $95 but looks so much higher-end.  I envision wearing it with a silky blouse and some simple pumps (I own these in like 4 colors).


Pick7Love the unique shape and heft of this sweater ($138) — and it comes in the best, coziest, girliest colors.

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Gap nailed the current trends with this chunky knit turtleneck dress ($69).  I even like the idea of layering a tissue-thin turtleneck ($34) underneath as temperatures plunge.

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