Wednesday, August 31

fall 2016 tv preview!

fall 2016 tv premieres i'm looking forward to

I'm posting the annual fall TV roundup today because one of my faves, You're the Worst, returns tonight at 10 p.m. Eastern. I love my fall TV, and I'm rounding up the show's I'm either looking forward or just plain curious about here.


Once Upon a Time (8p, ABC, Sept. 25)

My favorite show really went off the rails in the last season, but I'm hopeful that this one will be better. Lana Parilla, arguably one of the most talented actors on the show, will get to do double duty this season as both Storybrooke mayor Regina Mills and the Evil Queen. Emma and Hook are confirmed true love. The Disney shout-out this season will be Aladdin. Let's focus on the positives and not the potential mess that is the Land of Untold Stories.


The Big Bang Theory (8p, CBS, Sept. 19, Thursdays starting Oct. 27)

Will watch this season for Katey Segal and Jack McBrayer's appearances as Penny's family members, and pregnant Bernadette.

The Voice (8p, NBC, Sept. 19)

Miley Cyrus and Alicia Keys. I'm intrigued.

Supergirl (8p, CW, Oct. 10)

I'm generally not a huge DC Comics fan, but I just can't quit Supergirl - and neither could the CW, which has taken over the show's rights from CBS. Between adorable Kara Danvers and sassy Cat Grant, it's an hour of fun escapism and goofy villains - plus, Superman will be an actual character this season instead of just a guy who texts Kara a lot.

Fresh Off the Boat (9p, ABC, Oct. 11)

I love this show. Jessica Huang is my role model.

The Good Place (10p, NBC, Sept. 19)

I just love Kristen Bell. The premise of this one is really cheesy (bad girl accidentally gets into Heaven), but it looks cute (because Kristen Bell).

Conviction (10p, ABC, Oct. 3)

I'm not going to lie, I'm not psyched about this show's concept (former First Daughter and lawyer with a drug problem takes a job for the New York District Attorney to avoid jail time), but I love Hayley Atwell too much not to tune in. Emily Kinney from the Walking Dead will also be in this one. I wish they could just be Peggy Carter and Beth forever...

Timeless (10p, NBC, Oct. 3)

This is one of the new shows I am most excited about this year - Goran Visnjic (Luka from ER) plays a steals a time machine with the intent of destroying America as we know it. A team consisting of a scientist, a history professor, and a soldier use the machine's prototype to try to stop the criminal. The costumes and sets look beautiful.


Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (10p, ABC, Sept. 20)

Last season was full of WTF moments and Fitzsimmons drama and shipping, and I'm looking forward to what's next for my actual favorite Marvel characters. Jason O'Mara is joining the cast as the new director of S.H.I.E.L.D., and the cast has been teasing on social media that the 10:00 time slot will allow for edgier content.

This Is Us (10p, NBC, Sept. 20 / 9p, Oct. 11)

This ensemble piece about characters who share the same birthday and whose lives are entertwined features Mandy Moore, so I am in.

Drunk History (10:30p, Comedy Central, Sept. 27)

Lin-Manuel Miranda and Dave Grohl will both be on the series this season! That's all I need to know.


The Goldbergs (8p, ABC, Sept. 21)

Wednesday fun.

Total Bellas (8p, E!, Oct. 5)

Will this show about twin sisters who are professional wrestlers and the men who love them (made famous by Total Divas, I guess E! figured out that every other character in that show was annoying) be total trash TV? Yes it will. And I will totally watch it.

Speechless (8:30p, ABC, Sept. 21)

I'm intrigued by the concept of a family comedy centering on a teenager with special needs.

You're the Worst (10p, FXX, Aug. 31)

Season 2 of You're the Worst was surprisingly deep and I appreciated the way the show's writers handled Gretchen's clinical depression, including the tense moment when Jimmy finally shouted at her to "snap out of it!" Anyone who has ever dealt with depression knows why that scene crushed me - I vividly remember having to teach Mr. Q how my depression was actually a medical condition and not a bad mood. Then Jimmy built Gretchen a fort and held her through the night and I cried again. This season, Gretchen will enter therapy and Samira Wiley (from OiTNB) will play her therapist. 


Pitch (9p, Fox, Sept. 22)

This series about a female pitcher who gets a job in the MLB looks awesome.

Life in Pieces (9:30p, CBS, Oct. 27)

Last year, Mr. Q and I were surprised by how much we liked this show about a big family. It doesn't quite fill the Parenthood gap, leaning more toward Modern Family style comedy than shmaltz, but it's good. Nick Offerman and Megan Mullally will be guest starring in the opening episode of this season, which should be hilarious.


Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (9p, CW, Oct. 21)

I totally love this show and can't wait for another season of zany antics and weird musical numbers. Now that Josh knows everything about why Rebecca moved to West Covina, but she and Greg are clearly meant to be, things should get really awkward - and that's when this show is at its best.


Saturday Night Live (NBC, TBA)

It'll be interesting to watch Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon on a post-Ghostbusters SNL!


Easy (Netflix, Sept. 22)

I haven't heard much about this anthology series, but the cast includes Orlando Bloom, Jake Johnson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Aya Cash, so I'm going to give it a shot.

Luke Cage (Netflix, Sept. 30)

Mike Colter has been fantastic on Jessica Jones, so seeing him get to star in his own series will be great. I know basically nothing about this character.

The Mindy Project (Hulu, Oct. 4)

I can't decide whether I even want Mindy and Danny to be together anymore, but I am looking forward to Mindy's real-life BFF B.J. Novak making another appearance this season.

Good Girls Revolt (Amazon, October 28)

Based on the 1970 sex discrimination suit against Newsweek by 46 female employees including Nora Ephron and starring Anna Camp, I'm hoping to read the Lynn Povich book this is based on before the show premieres.

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life (Netflix, Nov. 25)


Tuesday, August 30

Pinspiration: Labor Day Weekend Style

Labor Day is next Monday, and I'm already thinking about what to do with my Monday off work - I'm hoping for an invitation to the lake, but staying home, turning on the grill, and watching Norma Rae again also seems like a good option. We've been in school for three weeks already and this teacher is exhausted.

What are your plans for Labor Day?

Monday, August 29

this week's clicks.

get your week off to a colorful start...
  • This might be my favorite Carpool Karaoke yet - it's Britney, bitches! I think my all-time favorite is still "Toxic," but I'm going to picture James from now on when I hear "Hit Me Baby One More Time."



Sunday, August 28

Tuesday, August 23

Style: Summer Business Trip - What I Really Wore

If you caught my most recent Stitch Fix post, you saw some of the items my stylist sent to help me put together a capsule wardrobe for my summer business trip to an educational conference in Florida. Being invited to the conference was a very big deal for me, career-wise, and I wanted to look my best. I'd decided to build my wardrobe around neutrals, navy, and teal so I could mix and match. Today, I wanted to share what I really ended up wearing on the trip - in the form of terrible selfies taken in hotel mirrors. Y'all, that's how much I love you and think about you even when I am on a fake vacation with my bosses.

We flew to Orlando on a discount airline that specializes in flights to Orlando and which requires passengers to pay a fee for carry-ons in addition to checked luggage, so I packed extremely light. I've had the same Vera Bradley duffel bag for years, and it's gotten me through lots of weekend trips and a destination wedding in St. Lucia. However, I've decided after this trip that I need to invest in something with wheels for trips that will require significant time in large airports. My laptop bag was a brand new treat to myself for this trip (and because I've been teaching for 9 years without a decent grown-lady tote bag) - it's a Samsonite Ultima 2 from I liked that it had a double zipper on the top and perfectly met our airline's requirements for a personal item. On the plane, it held my laptop, several notebooks, a pencil case, my Kindle, a scarf, and everything that would normally be in my purse.

I packed two Mossimo Vee t-shirts from Target for the trip - they are my absolute favorite tee for their thickness, wide range of colors and prints, and comfy but not too deep v neck. For the plane, I paired one with rolled Old Navy boyfriend skinny jeans, my Yoga Surprise mala, and Bare Traps sandals. 

Unfortunately, this outfit never actually made it onto an airplane. Our flight was cancelled due to a mechanical error and we had to spend the night in Greensboro. If you suspect that our budget airline put us up in a budget hotel, you are 100% correct. The good thing is we got our own rooms and none of us got food poisoning from the hotel restaurant. I'm smiling in this picture because I was delirious by the time we finally got to the hotel, and because my hair looked surprisingly awesome after being in a bun all day.

Since we were going to miss the first day of the conference, our representatives within the organization hosting arranged to meet with our group in the evening. This was my attempt at meeting appropriate, yet still comfy for a plane - a Stitch Fix blouse, gray ponte pants, and my sandals. Please note that my hair will be all downhill from here once exposed to Florida humidity.

After arriving safely in Florida and getting everything squared away with the conference, it was time for a night out. I switched out my pants for black shorts. These are actually Pearl Izumi bicycling shorts from Athleta with the inner liner removed - they work great as dressy shorts thanks to their longer length, they pack really small, and they don't wrinkle. Cyclists know what's up.

Excited to finally get to experience the conference, I wore my new 41Hawthorn dress from Stitch Fix. I was so tired after that first full day of conference-ing that I thought this picture was straight. 

I usually wash things before wearing, but this time I hadn't even taken the tags off. After I got home, I was very thankful that I followed the washing instructions and hand washed this dress, because the color bled very badly even after repeated rinses and washing with Woolite. I'm going to add a similar disclaimer to my original post. The dress still looks great, but should probably be hand-washed forever, in a porcelain sink (my plastic bathtub has a nice blue stain now).

Another evening outing outfit, this time with my other Mossimo tee, flat Bare Traps sandals, and a humidity-induced side ponytail. We explored International Drive, particularly the cute I-Drive 360 shopping center which is right underneath the giant Orlando Eye Ferris wheel.

I saved my dressiest look for the last day of the conference since there was a reception that evening. Many of the teachers at the conference dressed much less formally during the day than our group from Virginia did - I even saw folks in jeans and t-shirts, and felt a little silly for stressing so much about what to wear. I felt really comfortable and professional in this sleeveless shirt dress from Target and my handmade statement necklace.

In addition to the clothes shown here, I also packed two cardigans for the trip - tan and coral, which came in very handy in cold conference rooms. I didn't get to rock my scarf in the Florida heat, but it did come in very handy on the plane. I could have gotten several more outfits by mixing and matching these pieces, so overall I was really happy with the little capsule wardrobe I put together for my work trip. What pieces would you add?

Linking Up With:

Sunday, August 21

Sunday, August 14

sunday simplicity.

“Be clearly aware of the stars and infinity on 
high. Then life seems almost enchanted after all.”
― Vincent van Gogh

Sunday, August 7

sunday simplicity.

“Every spark returns to darkness. Every sound returns to 
silence. Every flower returns to sleep with the earth. 
The journey of the sun and moon is predictable. But 
yours is your ultimate art.” ― Suzy Kassem

Friday, August 5

#5FandomFriday: Make-Up Friday - 5 Characters I'd Name My Kids After

5 Fandom Friday is a weekly prompt challenge for female geek bloggers hosted by The Nerdy Girlie and Super Space Chick. You can learn more about the Female Geek Bloggers group hereThis week, I'm catching up with a #5FandomFriday prompt I missed: characters I'd name my (future) kids after.

1. Emma - I've fallen in love with Once Upon a Time over the past couple of years, and while my favorite character was originally Mary Margaret, her daughter Emma Swan has taken first place in my heart. First of all, Jennifer Morrison is beautiful and a wonderful actress who deserves to win all the awards. Emma Swan is tough, clever, and fiercely protective of those she loves, and those are all qualities I would be proud to see in my future daughter. She also shares her name with my favorite Jane Austen novel.

2. Luna - One of my favorite Harry Potter characters by far is dreamy Ravenclaw, Luna Lovegood. Even though she's suffered horrible tragedy followed by being the object of bullying in school, Luna remains sweet, kind, and always willing to help. She is humble and hardworking. In the books, I love the grounding effect she has on Harry, and the way he values her advice and spirit and chooses to be her friend no matter what others may think.

3. Claire - I love escaping into history and romance through the Outlander books, and Claire Randall/Beauchamp/Fraser is one of my favorite narrators of all time. Raised to be strong and confident, she served as a field nurse during World War II, endured all sorts of hardships in 18th century Scotland and France, because a successful doctor in America, and showed herself to be stubborn and brave throughout it all. She's sassy and intelligent and I absolutely adore her.

4. Carter - Carter is basically the best name ever for a baby geek - there's John Carter of Mars, SHIELD director Peggy Carter, and, for country music geeks like me, the Carter family from Virginia. But my first beloved Carter was Dr. John Carter, played by Noah Wyle on E.R. Oh, how I loved that man despite his many flaws. He was patient, kind, and devoted to saving the world in order to fight his inner demons.

5. Sawyer - I love a rogue - think Han Solo, Mal Reynolds, and Killian Jones - and one of my all time favorites is James "Sawyer" Ford from LOST. Even though he did some despicable things, I was rooting for him and the knight in shining armor I knew he could become throughout all the dark and twisty seasons of that crazy show.

Tuesday, August 2

pinspiration: fiesta forever

Since school starts next week for us, I have to remind myself that it is still actually summer. I'm going to be intentional about this - that means sitting on the patio after school, going to local festivals on the weekends, and crashing my sister-in-law's pool as much as possible. Another thing that's definitely going to remind me that summer is still in full force? The heat! It's still in the 90's here in Virginia and very, very humid. Finally, the Rio Olympics begin tomorrow with the Opening Ceremonies, and I'll get to feed my Olympics obsession. Four years ago, as the London Olympics drew to a close, I celebrated the Closing Ceremonies by experimenting with some Brazilian recipes - my favorites were the pan fried herbed pork chops, hearts of palm and avocado salad, and avocado-coconut milkshake. I also did one of my one and only fashion DIYs - my Olympics Ring tie-dyed shirt. This year, I'm thinking I'll be a little less literal with my Olympics-inspired fashion: instead of a shoutout to Baron de Coubertin, I'll be incorporating some Rio-inspired colors into my wardrobe, like this summer's Pantone pick, fiesta red. For this week's Pinspiration, I've also thrown in a Joni Mitchell quote because my 70's obsession, like the humidity, isn't going away any time soon.

Will you be watching the Rio Olympics Opening Ceremonies tomorrow night?

Monday, August 1

this week's clicks.

get your week off to a colorful start...

Happy August, y'all. This week, I'm focusing on reminding myself to be content with what I have and with my current season in life. Can I get real for a minute? All summer, friends and family members keep asking how the house hunt is going. It's painful to have to say... "it's still going" when in truth we have found a one-of-a-kind home but it is out of our price range. Several friends are mamas-to-be, and I have to remind myself that it's not my time yet. Teachers head back to school today, and there's a part of me that feels like I should be further along, more accomplished in my career. More, more, more.  I often forget that comparison is the thief of joy, until I realize that I've spent fifteen minutes or half an hour scrolling through Instagram or Facebook and feel worse instead of better. Two posts that really resonated with me this week were "The Traps" at The Inspired Room and "Of Elder-flowers and Jealousy" at Design for Mankind.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)