In this post:
My review of newest trends and retailers for Spring/Summer 2012
Confessions of an emotional eater
How to give good support to a friend in need and NOT say the wrong thing.

So Lovlies, I have scoured the internet for the most on trend, fashion foward and budget friendly finds, I have seen the good, the bad, the expensive and the not so nice prints of the season. Here is my opinion, you don't have to take my word for it, but you'll look much better if you do! ;) This is a dress with great ruching from Walmart for 21.98, material look flimsy but very affordable and nice color.
Need a dress for cocktails at a beachside resturant? This dress is grown up enough to be worn out with nice sandals and just right for the romance filled moonlit walks on the sand. Old Navy $44.98 style with some dangling earrings to elongate a shorter neck (I have to!) and wear a delicate silver bracelet for daintiness or if you are feeling more bold, try some tribal jewelry in the same purple hues.
Both of the dress below are by Monif C, up to size 24 I believe and from all accounts well made dependable clothing that is cut just right. Either of these dresses are for nights when you just feel that fierce, they stand great alone or with large hoops or bangles, if you are feeling it, wear both!
Now a look at the cutest most flattering swimsuits I've found, this tankini from Old Navy runs around about 40 dollars for the top and about 25 for the bottoms, really beautiful colors and great pattern on the tank.
This "Zanzibar" one piece by Monif C is gorgeous and you can channel your inner Bridget Bardot, only in color!
One piece, preppy chic one piece perfect to wear under shorts for a pool party or beach day! Totally worth the $55 price tag at Old
Speaking of shorts, these are cut just right for a fuller figure with room in the hips and booty, where most of us need a little leeway! Old around $30
Unleash your inner rock star with the skull print tankini top and pair with any basic black swim short or skirt from Torrid, online and in stores.

As much as we all would love to soak up the sun all summer long, most of us have to work and most of us in an office, so bring Spring with you with these on trend and budget friendly work looks.
 This button tab dress is nice for a casual Wed. at the office and it won't set you buck but around $40 give or take,
 WalMart carries some cute clothes now, including Miss Tina a line by Beyonce's mom! This ruched button tab shirt is only $16 online or in store and comes from 1-4X also comes in a great pink as well.
Torrid we love you, but please start making clothes that are flattering and wearable again. I heart the rockabilly vibe, just not all the time, this flutter kimono shirt is just cute enough for date night and with some trouser jeans ok for work, albeit I believe overpriced, wait for the sale.

Absolutely in love with blazers from old right now, perfect cover ups for when the chill comes in at night, wear over jeans out, or to the office to cover up bare arms from the always blasting office AC. $30

Now my lovlies for my absolute favorite part the shoes!
 What is not to like about the candy colored wedges available up to size 12 in wide width? Torrid 39.50
Perfect for Mother's day brunch! Torrid 39.50

Exude confidence without looking vampy in these happy inducing turquoise pumps keep the rest of your outfit simple and nude like white shorts with a pale pink top or even a sheer black,
 also from Torrid 39.50

Confessions of an Emotional Overeater-
My Name is Stefanie and I am an emotional overeater, when I am upset I will not only eat until I make myself sick, but I will do so away from prying eyes. When something is disappointing, or I feel as though nothing is going my way, I eat and not vegetables or tofu, but fat with grease usually served up with greasy fries and cheese. I know how unhealthy this is, I understand the damage I am doing to my body and though working out has helped my self esteem, it is still a habit I have yet to break. Like an alcholic, sometimes I need that fix, I will do anything for it, I will hide it from my loved ones, I will eat dinner twice just so no one will know I went through the drive through earlier.

Many people don't understand emotional overeating, but it is a vicious cycle that overeaters go through. First you feel the trigger the emotional uncomfortable or damaging siutation and then you crave foods that increase your seratonin levels which are normally all those things we love which makes us gain weight, sugar, fat and salt. Then after eating more than you can possibly stomach, you realize what you've just done and feel terrible about yourself and lack of self control and the cycle starts again.

I was doing really well handling my emotions, controlling my reactions to things and then last week happened. My parents decided to go to Vegas for a couple days and asked if I could stay and house sit and watch our adorable Doberman Amber, I of course agreed, looked foward to the alone time and was going to relish watching whatever I wanted on the big screen in the living room.

What I didn't realize was how much I depended on my parents for their emotional support since moving back home. My normal routine is to go to work, then the gym, and then home to a home cooked meal my mom has ready before I walk in the door. (Yeah she's awesome) She's even done away with many of the harmful cooking practices we had as a family before (using grease instead of EVOO).  My parents have always been my coaches and my cheerleaders in my professional life, my creative one and when I decided to try and lose weight. I hadn't realized that they were an integrel part of my routine, and when they weren't there I didn't follow through.

 Rationalizing that I couldn't leave the house empty, I had planned to work out at home, that plan never came to fruition, there were too many things calling my name in the fridge and on television, it was just too easy to goof off with no one watching me. I was in the middle of an episode of Kitchen Nightmares (yes I see the irony too) when a Chrystler commercial came on and I only caught the part where the announcer says "we believe its the things you do when no one's looking that define you." The pangs of guilt were real but not painful enough to actually get me up and moving.

My parents came back and I went back to the gym, everything seemed ok, although I knew I had done some damage to my progress on the scale, I was back in the routine and I had swam for an hour on Sunday, to go back to my more agressive work out the next day, but something happened. I've been with my company for over two years now and the possiblity of upward mobility was slim to none, but I've always done the best job I could to great results.

 Now, that my boyfriend has asked me to move to Oregon with him from California so he can pursue a much more lucrative career than he would have here, I happily agreed. Wanting to make sure to give my company enough time to train someone I let them know my last day would be May 31st one month from today, my regional who both I and the other person in my office report to, was less than apathetic about my going. He merely informed me that he would put an ad in the paper and look for my replacement, which was the emotional and business equivalent of "don't let the door hit ya....". I couldn't actually believe it, there was no remorse about my leaving, my regret, and no offer of a reference to any future employer.

 I was crushed I had taken an office which was in the red and turned it into profit mode in one quarter, quadrupled the business in fact. I started questioning my own worth as an employee. Maybe I hadn't done such a good job? But then the numbers would reflect that I told myself. Numbers don't lie, but it didn't matter the blow had been dealt and the empty space was growing wider and wider a chasm inside that demanded to be filled, with anything everything in sight.

 Every piece of chocolate in my stash was gone by the end of the day and when closing time came around I headed straight for the drive through, ordered the biggest burger I could and promptly washed it down with a gallon of soda, I didn't even go to the place I normally go for burger splurges, when I've saved enough calories to do so, I went to some drive through that I don't even really like, but it was there, it was fast and no one would recognize me or ask me how I was doing.

As soon as the last bite was in my mouth, I felt nauseated. I really am not used to eating this way anymore except when I have an emotional upheaval and for the last three months I've been good at trying to not do this to myself. I don't have the luxury of this anymore though, I'm getting older and my body will not tolerate me being this heavy for much longer before it requires much more from me. I know that I should have driving straight to the gym, had it out with the elliptical and run my weekly mile, but I didn't do any of those things and I buried my arteries in fat. It must be fate that my Pandora station just started playing "Stand by Me" my all time favorite movie and song.

We have to learn to forgive ourselves, if my best friend had just made this confession to me, I would hug her, tell her it's all going to be okay and she can start fresh tomorrow, why is it so hard to do that for myself? Why do we expect ourselves to be perfect by forgive our loved ones anything and everything? Why do I expect that a lifetime of habits will simply disappear overnight, or over a couple of months? Bad things are always going to happen, you can't plan out every moment of your life, but you can plan on how to handle those blows. So, the next time I feel bad, upset, empty, like a failure I'm going to call someone and let it all out, because my friends aren't going to shun me for eating a Big Mac, or too many Cheeteos, they will lift me up the same way I have always done for them and maybe next time if I can remember that, it will be easier to step away from the poison which I've come to know.

How to give support to a friend in need without saying the wrong thing.

I have this friend who I adore, she pretends to be cold and distant, to be above the world, to be an ancharnosim to our time, but I can see how perfectly unique and beautiful she is, unfortunately she can't see that in herself and has made some unfortunate choices in mates. Having some difficulty in a previous relationship, the wounds that person has left are deep and unfortunately still seeping and festering. Like any of us, it's hard to get over why a relationship dies, there are those who will blame the other, sometimes rightly, sometimes not, but for whatever reason we have endings, we have them for our own reasons. Not all endings are happy ones and that is something we all have trouble accepting, I know I have.

The most important thing to remember when trying to reach out to someone, is to shut up and listen. You may not know everything that person is going through, you may have had similar circumstances but we all cope and heal in our own ways, and we can never know the full experience of someone else. You can empathize with them, try to avoid giving too much advice unless it's asked for, or if you feel uncomfortable maybe share what you did in a similar situation. Understand that the person may not take your advice and reassure them that you will support whatever decision they make because you are first and foremost their friend and their happiness and well being are higher on your list than being right.

I've often made the mistake of being too agressive in my honesty and truthfulness, some are much more sensitive than others. I am not, I am blunt and to the point and I say things as I think them which I think makes me a better writer though maybe not always the most considerate friend and I find I must edit myself often before speaking, think about how that comment or piece of advice or critisim will affect that person not you. Remember to always be compassionate, genuine and caring and make sure that your friends trust is well founded by listening to what they need, often times it's just to talk.

As always my lovlies until tomorrow!


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