My recent success with curbing spending is probably more due to long work hours than self control. I haven’t kept up with any shopping blogs, nor have I read any retailer emails about their “can’t miss” sales, nor have I frequented any retailer sites (like I had a bad habit of doing). Its been a nice break for my bank account. Which is good, because I have a few big purchases planned this year! One of which is my upcoming trip to Costa Rica with my brother. Only five more weeks until vacation! I haven’t had vacation since last June. I mean, even having weekends off for a month seems like a vacation for residents (haven’t had that for about three months now…), but a whole week off? Whew, I don’t know if I can handle that. I’m going to be obnoxious-happy-excited. My brother’s gonna hate me.
I’ve had a few random days off recently because I’m doing a rotation in the ED, so I’ve been trying to catch up on a little shopping and blogging. I feel so behind! I’ve never not had any items on my wishlist (gosh, what could be worse than not wanting things, lol). Well, this J. Crew coat that I’m wearing in these pics is on my wishlist now. I put up my review a while back but ended up returning the coat because I couldn’t justify the price at the time. But it is a good looking coat, so if the other colors get cheaper, they’re mine (if my size is still left). I also have more Stuart Weitzman boots on my radar. I remember reading reviews of people saying they got great deals on SW boots in the spring, so I’ll be on the lookout for deals for other pairs. A comfy, classic boot is a necessity in this frigid weather! A worthy investment. Amazon has some good deals already on certain styles. The 5050 boot is 25% off in certain colors (gray, bordeaux, etc.) and the demiswoon boot is 25% off in black (sadly, or gratefully, my size is sold out). The boot that’s tempting me is the crushable knee-high boot in black nappa at 57% off. Gah, soooo tempting!! Trying to hold out for the highline boot, but why not just try the other one out in the meantime? Rationalize, Amber. Do you have any wishlist items I can “gain inspiration” from?
So, I’m planning on doing a little summary post of my residency experiences thus far. Really, its not that bad. I like what I do, I just don’t like that it completely consumes my life. I know the 80 hour work limit is “generous” compared to past generations work hours. But its still a lot. Seeing friends and family is important to me. Eating healthy and exercising are important to me. And having some hobbies outside of work is important to me. I honestly think I’m a better person and doctor when I have the chance to do these things. *Sigh.* One day.
I hope you’re doing well this winter, its been a long one already!
I went a little purchase crazy during J. Crew’s pre-holiday sales. I hate when all of their sale items turn into final sale after the holidays, so I buy everything I’m even remotely interested in before this happens. The stadium-cloth cocoon coat is an item I’ve been interested in trying for a while. I tried on last years version and it was too over-sized, so this year I grabbed the petite version.
Sizing: I’m wearing a 0P, and I think this is my ideal size. The sizing is mostly based on shoulder width because the body of the jacket is so forgiving (I measured the bust at 18″). In the 0P I have full range of motion in my arms without feeling constricted at all. I think the 00P would have been too snug across the shoulders. So if you’re much smaller than I am, you’ll be sized out of this one.
Fit: The fit is tricky, especially for petites like myself. The cut is obviously boxy, but pretty slim overall. It hits at mid thigh, about 29″ in length. The length is long enough to keep you warm, but short enough so that the coat doesn’t swallow you whole. The sleeves in the petite version are on the shorter side, which actually looks cute with the style of the coat (I usually hate shorter sleeves). I measure mine at about 16″ from the underarm to cuff.
Fabric Content: This year’s stadium-cloth fabric is different than last year’s. Its still composed of 79% wool 21% nylon, but last year’s version was an extremely smooth, fuzz-free tight knit. This years version is still a tight knit, but the finish of the fabric is fuzzier and softer. I actually prefer this year’s fabric, its so thick and warm! Not warm enough for -20F temps (+ windchill!), but definitely warm enough for the majority of winter weather.
Colors: J. Crew’s seasonal outerwear color pallets are hit or miss for me. This year is definitely a hit. I got the navy (on sale). My favorites from this year are the midnight green and gossamer peach! Stunning and saturated. I wonder when the rest of the colors will go to sale?
Quality vs. Price: J. Crew’s outerwear is typically of decent quality. Paying $350 is quite steep for this coat, as the style is pretty basic. But $200-$250 is reasonable. The fabric is nice and substantial. The zipper is hefty and appears un-damagable. The inside is lined with polyester, but has cute little trim details that give it something special. Overall, I think J. Crew did well with this coat this year.
Looking back, 2013 wasn’t a big spending year for me. I was living off my last bits of loan money for the first half of the year, and during the second half of the year I had all sorts of expenses associated with moving to a new city and starting a new job. That said, I still made some quality purchases. These are the ones that top the list:
Dior’s Hydra Life Pro-Youth Skin Tint: I tried to get on the BB/ CC cream bandwagon, but it just didn’t work out for me. But with the cold, dry winter upon us, I really needed something less drying than my go-to mineral foundation. Dior’s Hydra Life Pro-Youth Skin Tint was the winner for me (in #1). My skin feels so good with this stuff on. It has light coverage, looks totally natural and doesn’t break me out, which is nearly a miracle in itself.
Illamasqua Cream Blush: I pick up a new shade of blush every year, and this year I picked up Illamasqua’s cream blush in a tan-peachy-beige color called zygomatic. This stuff is gorgeous! The color is subtle and brings life to my winter skin. I’ve been using it with the tinted moisturizer every day and my skin is happy as can be. When it warms up one day I’ll grab one of their power blushes, which seem just as amazing (check out the reviews!). I never thought I’d find a blush that I liked better than Nars.
Shoes & Boots
Stuart Weitzman 5050 boots: I haven’t had these for long, but I already know they’ll be worn to death. They are so comfortable and flattering… somehow the OTK look elongates my legs! I justified the price (on sale) because they are quite versatile, so I can wear them to work or casually. I’ll be on the lookout for more SW boots when winter sales hit!
Attilio Giusti Leombruni flats: I did a glowing review of these after I bought them, and I’ve been loving them ever since. Comfort is this shoe’s biggest selling point (just check out the reviews!). Additionally, they’re slim and flattering on the foot. A great, basic flat that would fit in any wardrobe.
Sorel Cate the Great Boots: It took me ages to pick a winter boot this year. I was tempted to get another pair of classic tall Uggs, but with the constant salty-snow we have here, I was certain they would be ruined quickly. These Sorel boots, though? They’ll be able to withstand just about anything. They’re warm and cozy, too. They’re not slim and sexy, but they’re cute and appropriate. I picked mine up for 30% off from Sierra Trading Post.
Contigo travel mug: Essential to life. I put my wonderful hot coffee in my Contigo travel mug every morning. It stays hot for hours, which is perfect because I rarely am able to just sit and drink my coffee in the morning (constant on-the-go…). Best mugs ever.
Yogitoes mat towel: Hot yoga is likely one of the main reasons I don’t feel super depressed this winter. I’ve been practicing regularly, even when I’m on nights. Having a good mat is relatively important (I use a JADE mat), but I’ve found that having a good mat towel is even more important. The yogitoes ones are amazing. If you know any yoga lovers, this would be a great gift.
Green superfood: I don’t like to recommend any health stuff, but I do want to share my experiences with my green juice that I drink whenever I need a little extra energy (like transitioning from days–>nights–>days). I’m admittedly not great at getting all of my servings of fruits and veggies in. I try to drink green smoothies, but sometimes I’m just too lazy to keep up with it. This juice is quick and easy to mix up and drink in 30 seconds before work. I don’t drink it every day because “supplements” make me nervous, but its a good boost for those busy times. I’m trying the lemon-lime version next!
Aromatherapy: Its amazing that something as simple as a fragrance can really alter your mood! For me, especially this time of the year, the smell of pine immediately brings a smile to my face. I fill my car and home with a variety of relaxing aromas (not at the same time ) to help me relax and unwind. I have many favorites, but I’m currently obsessed with Aveda’s Caribbean Therapy.
Welcome! I'm Amber, and this is my blog. I'm not fashionable enough to have a true "fashion blog," nor am I exciting enough to have a "lifestyle blog." So, this is my "share-my-random-thoughts" blog. Shopping, fitness, finance, meditation, healthcare, food... you get the idea. I throw some outfit pictures in there for some visual interest!
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