Friday, October 31, 2014

Rise of the Jackolanterns

For the record, I really hate surprises. Even worse, I hate knowing that a surprise is coming. It leaves me with too many questions (all of them superficial)- what do I wear? Are we inside? Outside? Where are we going? What are we doing? What do I need to do with my hair??

Even though I really can't stand surprises, Zac insisted on keeping our outing Wednesday night a secret, even if I did figure it out before we arrived.

On the grounds of the Old Westbury Gardens (which I have been dying to visit in the daytime) every year is the Rise of the Jackolanterns. Basically, a bunch of people with crazy amounts of talent get together, and carve pumpkins, fit them into different designs, and fill the garden with the pumpkin statues. The are dinosaurs, gangsters, the NYC skyline...well, you can see for yourself.

Yes, these are made of pumpkins!!

The dinosaurs were my favorite section of the walk. The sculptures were enormous and so elaborately carved that I can't imagine how long it took to put them together.

This entire tree is filled with smaller pumpkins! 

We weren't supposed to take photos while waking through the tree tunnel to the second half, but that's never stopped me. 

The first half was very eclectic, switching from New York-themed pumpkins, Broadway, dinosaurs, Disney princesses, and sports stars, with a little section at the end dedicated to all the stars who passed away this year. Then, you are led through a red-lit tree tunnel to Part 2, which was completely under-the-sea themed.

Typical, talking through all of my pictures...

Even though it is starting to get colder (cue Game of Thrones reference), I'm glad to be able to do fun fall things with all of my friends and break out all of my fall outfits! If only this weather could last...

Tonight our whole group is headed to the Old Bethpage Village Restoration, so y'all can expect a new post over the weekend! I hope everyone has a happy Halloween, I can't wait to share my costume!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I Am Malala

Friday morning was rushed and hurried, as I was late for my broadcast writing class and arrived to realize I had not studied for our quiz- whoops (I ended up doing pretty well!). With no time to check my phone or my daily Foreign Policy emails (#nerd), I was out of the loop until I sat down for lunch. The first thing I saw when I opened Twitter was that #Malala was trending. And then I saw it- Malala Yousafzai, the girl who stood up to the Taliban, had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

I don't write about my love of international affairs as much as I'd like to on the blog. Obviously not everyone is interested in that kind of stuff and yes, I will go back to fashion and lifestyle soon, but since Saturday was International Day of the Girl I thought this post was appropriate.

I love Malala. I love her work, I love everything that she stands for, I love that she is finally recognized internationally and that she is now the youngest Peace Prize winner in history. This girl is seventeen. What did I do when I was seventeen? I definitely wasn't campaigning for education and girls' rights around the world.

Lydia and I saw Malala, her father Ziauddin, and the head of the Malala Fund, Shiza Shahid, at the Mashable Social Good Summit last September. She wasn't originally on the list, probably to keep a low profile, but once we found out she was coming the second day we nearly had a collective heart attack.

She. Was. Amazing. Lydia and I took seats in the front of the theater, and we were prepared to fight for our spots. When I realized, as she was speaking, that I was really in the same room as Malala, I couldn't believe it. If you want to read more about our experience at Social Good, I wrote about it for The College Tourist. Tears were definitely shed.

I read Malala's biography over the summer, where she details how her father became involved with education, how she started blogging for the BBC when she was nine, and how she became a target of the Pakistani Taliban. It's both inspiring and humbling to see what people around the world go through every day. We often forget this, living in such a privileged country, but even in America people struggle to get an education every day.

Sure, there are lots of arguments for why Malala shouldn't have won the prize- she was nominated last year and did not win. But I'm all for it. She has been fighing

If you want to know more about Malala, her appearance on The Daily Show is a pretty good place to start, or you can check out the Malala Fund

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

CBS News Article

Guess who has her first article up on CBS News?? MEEEEE!!!!

I'm so excited I had to immediately post it to Facebook and Twitter, and of course blog about it. 

This is one of those moments where you realize your hard work truly does pay off. I worked on this story for most of my day Tuesday, in between other intern tasks. I am so honored to be a part of CBS News and to have the opportunity through my department to be published while interning! It's crazy to think that just over a year ago I was publishing my first few articles on The Daily Beast and now I'm up on CBS News!

I'm so so so excited that it went up (and so quickly, that's the news business for ya!) and I can finally share a little bit of what I do every week,

Thursday, October 2, 2014


I'm writing this while snuggled into bed, wearing a sweater, listening to She and Him, and waiting for the rain while I enjoy my new 'Sweater Weather' scented Wallflower- not a bad start to October! September is supposed to be the 'beginning' of fall (except in Texas where it doesn't cool down until November!), but here in New York we've had a crazy Indian summer- I definitely did not bring enough summery clothes for this!

However, when October arrived yesterday it came in full force, with chilly temps, clouds, and a little drizzle. I'm not really one of those girls who is completely and utterly obsessed with fall, mostly because I know that fall just means winter is coming (that Game of Thrones reference is for you, Kenz). Before I can even pull out all of my sweaters, Long Island dumps some snow onto us and goes and ruins my fall!

But I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts! Fall, after all, means apple picking, #pumpkinspiceeverything, flannel, riding boots, and new sweaters. I may or may not have purchased 3 different kinds of pumpkin-flavored yogurt at Target along with a pumpkin spice latte....speaking of which, if you're looking for a less-pumpkin-ish, lower-calorie PSL, Summer Wind has the perfect latte hack (trust me, it makes it even better!).

Fall is a pretty great season, I'll admit. I do love how everyone gets so excited, and it seems like every social media site and blog is full of autumn-themed posts with pumpkins, Starbucks, and Hunter boots galore. So while I may complain that the weather is finally turning colder and we'll soon be buried under snow, I'm going to enjoy the season while it lasts, down a few more lattes, and cuddle into my new fall clothes. I hope everyone has a fantastic fall!

p.s. this sweater is actually from the men's section of Forever 21 and it's amazing- definitely my new favorite sweater for the coming months!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

On the Farm

I'm baaaaack!!! This has been an absolutely crazy month, with non-stop, back-to-back events, between commuting to the city twice a week for my internship, classes, Zeta stuff, Homecoming, and Clarissa visiting!! This weekend will actually be my only weekend that is completely off for another month, so I will be taking full advantage of it with lots of sleeping and Netflix.

For now, I wanted to share a little adventure we all took Friday morning. As much as I complain about hating Long Island, I usually exclude the East End, home to vineyards, orchards, cute little farmhouses, and the Hamptons. Since it's fall, what better way to celebrate than to go apple picking?

As I mentioned, Clarissa visited this weekend (finally!) and I wanted to her a) meet my friends and b) experience something fun on Long Island. So we all piled into the car and headed out east.

We could not have picked a more beautiful day to be outside- the weather was perfect, as we're still in the middle of our Indian Summer, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky the entire day. We hopped on the Apple Express (we all turn into children when you let us loose, so of course we wanted to ride on the express) that took us around to the back of the orchard, where they had just opened up new lanes for the morning. Armed with our quarter-peck bags eager to be stuffed, we hurried into the orchard! 

Emi captured this amazing photo of me- I'm in love! Time in invest in a fancy new camera? I think so.

Photo cred to Emi.

How cute is this candid? I stole it from Amanda's lovely blog (which you should all follow!).

Photo credits to Emi and her schnazzy camera. 

Fun fact: Clarissa actually hated the texture of apples up until this morning, because who can resist a fresh, juicy apple that you picked with your own hands? 

Outfit details: Bag, vintage Coach. Hat, Vineyard Vines. Sunglasses, Ray-Bans. Boots, Coach. Jacket and shirt, Ross.

It's not a trip to the country without an apple cider donut and a few honey sticks! While I didn't get my roasted corn, I guess that means I'll have to take another trip!

After our bags and bellies were full, we drove up and down Sound Avenue, the main road that is home to countless little farm stands and orchards, where we found a few flowers, pumpkins, delicious iced coffee, and another Harbes family stand with a few attractions that were definitely meant for children, but like I said, when has age ever stopped us?

I love seeing my friends from home and my school friends getting to know each other, and I couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day. If you're in New York this season, make a trip out east, you will not regret it!