summer brights

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I love how a good dress can make you feel pretty and dressed up all in one go. The other times this dress has appeared on the blog there's been necklaces and belts, pieces to contrast the orange while not taking away from the print, but this time I was feeling minimalistic and let the dress speak for itself. I did nothing to interrupt the flattering lines and I think it's a great look to dress down with flats.



Dress: The Limited (also worn here, similar in gray here) ~ Shoes: BP via Nordstrom Rack ~ Purse: Eastern Market (no brand) ~ Earrings: Modcloth (and these are cute too!) ~ Watch: Michael Kors

Life Lately

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Since I still haven't worked out the kinks of taking outfit photos at work, let's take a look at some of things I've been up to lately, shall we? Summer might have just started but there has been a lot to keep me busy, especially since DC seems to be knocking it out of the park when it comes to geek centric events.

Maleficent


Despite the generally positive (but kind of lookwarm) reviews, I got talked into seeing Maleficent on the big screen and I have to admit it was better than I expected. Angelina Jolie was the best thing about the movie (though I do think Elle Fanning was just working with what she had) and I loved Jolie's emotional journey throughout the movie. I would even see it again, which for me is about the highest compliment I can give a movie, but I'd probably start from when Aurora is born and go from there, lol.
Grade: B+
 

Whedonism: A Burlesque Tribute to Joss Whedon

I don't know what's going on in DC, but this is just one of the many geek themed burlesque shows that have crossed my calendar lately and unlike the Batman Villians one, was totally for those in the know. As in, I almost didn't feel geeky enough for this crowd because some of the way the dancers interpreted his work was so specific that I didn't always get the reference. BUT for the most part the music was great (one performer even did a routine to Michelle Branch's "Everywhere" which I think caused me to concentrate more on singing along than actually paying attention, lol) and there was a wonderful diverse group of bodies up on stage. And a little ukelele playing and Jane Song sing-a-long.
Grade: B


Geek Chic Fashion Show

I wasn't sure what to expect going in to this event, despite the fact that it was billed as including "nerdy street style, casual cosplay, steampunk couture, Hogwarts riot grrls, high-fashion superheroes, tiny princess supervillains, Carol and Kamala Corps and more!" I think the way I interpret geek fashion isn't always the way others do, and while I ended up having a decent time, I don't think the show was all that revolutionary either. I'm spoiled by DragonCon and have seen some amazingly well done pieces - in my mind a fashion show should include some off the wall clothing as well as street style, and while a more low-key vintage aesthetic was incorporated, it wasn't showed off to its best. The lighting was awkward and good pictures were almost impossible to take. All the models walked too fast and didn't actually pose at the end of the runway, thus making it impossible to see the detail included in the looks (I still loved you 1920's Snow White!). I thought the church venue was fine but ultimately it suffered from feeling more like a friend "look at me" event and less like a fashion show.
Grade: C


floral fantasy

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Here's something you won't be seeing any time soon - straightened and re-curled hair! DC summer has already made it impossible for me to replicate the style, but I think this dress will look great with my natural texture too.

Happy Monday!




Dress: H&M ~ Shoes: Nine West (old, this season's available here) ~ Clutch: Shiraleah ~ Sunglasses: Oliver Peoples (mine are prescription) ~ Watch: Michael Kors


Puerto Rico: El Yunque and La Mina

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I hate to say this friends, but looking back on my pictures (and damn are they beautiful) I have to admit that I didn't end up doing a whooole lot in Puerto Rico. When I vacation it's usually my time to relax and kick back so some of the must haves (bio bay, ferry over to Cuelebra, etc.) just didn't get done. And I can't say I did anything wild and crazy instead either, since most of that extra time was probably spent either napping in my room, on the beach, or watching country music concerts on TV.

Do I regret it? Absolutely not. Do I want to go back to do the rest? Hell yes.

Either way I thought it'd be fun to go back over the couple things I did do (and loved) in case of you guys venture to Puerto Rico and need some help deciding. So on to the pictures!

Sunday morning my friend ventured up into El Yunque National Forest to take in the beautiful flora and fauna of Puerto Rico, which included a short hike to La Mina, one of PR's most famous waterfalls. Initially Google Maps had clocked the drive at about 40/50min depending on traffic, but what both our phones neglected to tell us is that there is only ONE real way to into the forest. When your phone or GPS unit shows you the short-ish route through the forest? Ignore it and curse to the heavens that there's no asterisk indicating that further information is available. The road that it's showing you doesn't actually go all the way through El Yunque anymore - it's been closed since the mid 70's and only leads to a rest stop.

BOOOOOOO.

You have to drive around the Eastern side of the forest, to the North entrance, to actually get to see anything like the Yokahu Tower above or the La Mina waterfall below. In other words, Makiko and I did a lot of unnecessary driving to get to our destination so learn from our mistake!

Still the trip was beautiful and La Mina was a joy to see. Yeah, it might not be the huge ridiculously  unreal waterfalls that you can see in other parts of the world but to my eyes it was just as good. Plus since we started our journey relatively early, there weren't a lot of other tourists around until when we were leaving.



Oh and one other note - instead of taking the true La Mina trail, we took Big Tree which met up with it at the waterfall. The map at the beginning indicated that it was a tiny bit longer but after reading some reviews that said the La Mina trail was a harder hike out, we were glad we stuck to the first one we came to. It was about 30min for us going in and 20min back out - with some stairs and hills along the way, so I'd agree with the 'moderate' rating it has on the sign. Perhaps also consider bringing a small backpack or fanny pack with you - my crossbody was fine but the strap got a bit hot in all the humidity.  AND SUNSCREEN IT UP MY FRIENDS. I kind of did it but wasn't as meticulous about it and ended up significantly pinker than I had anticipated. It wasn't a full-on painful burn, but it affected what I wore in Old San Juan the next day, so, you know - do as I say, not as I do.