Friday Duplicates

Sometimes I come up with multiple styling options for one piece of clothing.  It’s a fun rainy day activity to take a piece of clothing and see how you can manipulate it to work in different outfits.  Can you tuck it in to make it look and feel different?  Can you wear it in a different type of outfit than it is intended–work wear, casual, day vs night, etc.  But sometimes this works against me!

I have so many ways to wear one piece of clothing that it is all that I want to do– wear my new creations.  But, I can’t do that.  People frown upon the idea of wearing the same piece of clothing everyday.  I can get away with wearing the same outfit or piece of clothing twice in close proximity if I know that I am not going to see the same people, but other than that it’s a no go.  People will think that you don’t wash your clothes.  And then they will think that you are gross and make up mean nicknames behind your back.

And let’s face it, I have an entire closet full of clothes so I don’t need to be wearing the same item over and over again.  That’s the story behind this dress.  The last time that I wore it I brainstormed two or three additional ways to wear it for the upcoming Fall/Winter season.  And I’ve practically been counting the days until I could wear it again.  I thought that I wore this dress on a tuesday/thursday but I just figured out that I wore it on a friday!  It’s a good thing that I waited three weeks before wearing it again.  (I told you that I was having a rough week.)

Jean jacket: Wal-Mart. Feather earrings: Charlotte Russe.(?) Black flowered dress: Target. Black v-neck shirt: Target. Bubble necklace: E-bay. Brown belt: (thrifted.) Green socks: Target. Brown boots: Old Navy.

I really liked this outfit, but the dress felt short.  I don’t know if it was because I had bare legs (except for the socks), or what. I thought about wearing my bubble necklace– I even took half of my pictures with it on, but it didn’t read the way that I wanted it to.  I thought that the necklace would match the green in the dress and the green socks a little better, but they were two far off in my opinion to look right.  So, I went without the necklace this time around.  I’ll have to come up with a different outfit to wear my bubble necklace.

My Friday class is behind my T/TR class in some things, and ahead of them in others.  It mostly has to do with the number of speeches and requirements that dictate what chapters we cover and when.  In my Friday class we talked about introductions and conclusions and presentation aids.  It’s a requirement for my Friday class that they have a presentation for their first speech but not for my T/TR class.  I also duplicated the funny question game in this class, as well.  They were a little bit more receptive to it, thankfully.

Now that the week is done, I have a stack of outlines to grade, a handful of quizzes, lecture to prepare, and items to prepare for the printer’s.  Oh yeah, and working at my other job most of the weekend.  Ahh, I must remind myself that I am grateful and blessed to have two jobs– especially when some people don’t even have one.

-Carla

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Friday Fun Day

Friday morning I lectured over Listening and Outlining with my students.  These two chapters were a little easier to present because I have already covered them in my Tuesday/Thursday class.  We started out with Listening since they are usually a little more awake and ready to pay attention.  As the class starts to wear on, they start to get a little stir crazy.  We meet once a week for 2 hours and 40 minutes.  I usually try to give them (and myself) a ten minute break somewhere in the middle just to give everyone a chance to stand up, move around, and get the blood flowing again.  They are always able to step out if they need to use the restroom or take an emergency phone call, but some of them do smoke or won’t leave during lecture.

I did announce to them at the beginning that we had a lot to do that day and there would not be a formal break.  This is how I bought myself some “extra” time to make sure that I could fit in the Pictionary activity with this class.  I started out by giving them a quiz on the material that we covered the last week.  My Friday students are doing slightly better on the quizzes than my T/TR students.  This is surprising to me.  Last Spring, my Friday students struggled a lot with the material and I attributed it to the meeting schedule.  I felt that the students didn’t have enough time to let some of the information sit and gel before we had to move on to the next topic.  Speech is kind of like math– it all builds on itself and if a student has trouble understanding addition that lack of understanding is only going to get worse when you try to teach them multiplication or division.

But, I think that since I had the predisposition that my Friday students would have a more difficult time, I stressed to them at the beginning how important it was for them to do their reading, study for their quizzes, and take an active role in class.  The other thing that I find interesting is that I gave my T/TR students a practice quiz to show them the types of questions that I would ask.  I did not collect it or even see their scores– so whether they did bad or good I will never know.  But, I did it as kind of a warning to show them that they would need to study.  I did not do that for my Friday class, and yet they are scoring higher (as a group) than my T/TR students.  There is the possibility that my practice quiz exercise actually backfired on me.  Anyway.  These are the types of things that I find interesting and turn over in my mind late at night when I am trying to sleep.

Mustard cardigan: Target. Gold earrings: J.C. Penney. Brown Tank top: Old Navy. Layered necklaces: Target. Plaid dress: Old Navy. Brown belt: (thrifted.) Brown boots: Old Navy.

I liked this outfit well enough.  It does seem very fitting for the Fall season with its color palette.  But, the dress is a linen material and has a strappy top.  This can make it difficult to wear it to school.  I always have to put something under it and/or over top of it to make it appropriate.  Plus, this sort of feels like I just put on random layers in a sense.  And, this is extremely similar to the last time that I wore this dress, just with a different colored cardigan, basically.  (I think I may have liked it better the first time around.)  And while there is nothing wrong with wearing the same outfit twice, I feel that it should be a good outfit and this one is just so-so.  And then there’s my hair.  I have noticed that when I don’t like the way my hair is in a picture I tend to dislike the outfit.  Weird, right?

There are so many girls who can make a casual ponytail look cute and really good.  I just don’t think that I am one of them.  Truth be told, I didn’t wash my hair this morning.  I washed it the night before for class and had planned on wearing it pulled back or up.  I don’t wash my hair everyday–I usually wash it everyday other day.  I think that  I would have felt better if I had washed my hair and styled it differently, but there wasn’t time for that on Friday morning.

But, I still feel like I am doing o.k. in the challenge to make my Friday outfits as good, if not better, than my T/TR outfits.  Just because it’s Friday I don’t want to feel like I am giving up or dressing too casual.  What are your thoughts?  Do you like this dress better the first time or second time that I styled it?  Does something like your hairstyle make you like an outfit more or less?  Please leave me a comment below!

-Carla

Everyday I’m Shufflin’

Hey there!  Sorry for the slight delay in posts– I mentioned last week that I had a tinge of the flu coming on, so over the weekend I tried to relax and get some extra sleep.  However, that is a little easier said than done!  I teach Thursday evenings and then have to get up an’ at ’em bright and early on Friday morning for my 9:oo a.m class.  Luckily, this past Friday I was off from my other job and my BF and I had a fun date night that evening.  (More about that in a minute.)  I did have to attend an early morning work meeting on Saturday, and then be back at 5 p.m. to work until 1:30 a.m.  And, that wasn’t the end of it– I worked Sunday morning from 9:30a.m.-5 p.m.  So it was a weekend of quick turnarounds I guess you could say.

But, don’t feel bad that I didn’t blog my Thursday and Friday outfits– I neglected other stuff too, like grocery shopping, getting an oil change, cleaning the house, and laundry.  Guess what I get to do today?!
Let’s get right to it!  On Thursday I wanted to wear something that made me a little more accessible to the students, so I toned down the overt professionalism and went with something a little more casual: a short-sleeved brown turtleneck sweater, khaki pants, and a brown plaid blazer.

Brown plaid blazer: (thrifted.) Gold earrings: Wal-Mart. Brown turtleneck sweater: unknown. Khaki trousers: J.C. Penney. Gold watch: Wal-Mart. Brown oxford shoes: unknown.

There is something about a brown plaid blazer that just says Fall and Professorto me.  Do you have the same connotations towards this item of clothing?  And, long time readers will also remember that I am wearing this brown sweater backwards because I like the three-button accent.  It sort of feels like a necklace for my shirt.

Thursday was a fun day in class.  Although we had to finish up the lecture from the previous day, I knew that I was going to give the quiz as a take home assignment.  I had the student on Tuesday tell me that he was going to miss class, then I also had a student e-mail me and say that something came up and he wanted to know if we were taking the quiz first because he was going to try to come for the quiz, and then another student told me that she was going to have to leave early to attend to a family member.  Now, I could just say, la di da, so is life, but one of the goals that I am working on as an educator is being more accepting and helpful towards my students.
And I think that one way that I can do that is with the clothes that I wear, but I also need to complete that cycle with my words and actions.  I mean, this semester alone, I was looking at potentially missing 3 instructional days of class, myself.  (One for regional bartender championship flair contest and two for a family vacation.)  I think in light of all that, I can bend my policies a little sometimes.

Not to mention that I have been trying to get to the Pictionary activity for at least two weeks and we kept running out of time.  Something had to give– and I chose the in-class quiz.  The Pictionary activity is one that I whole heartedly champion.  It is such a simple activity– it requires minimal set-up and about 20 minutes of class time (depending on the number of students).  But, what it yields in return is almost immeasurable!

  1. The students are broken up into two or three groups and asked to learn the names of each group member.  This allows them to being making those strangers into friends– and certainly helps them overcome beginning speech anxiety.
  2. Each person goes up in front of the entire classroom when it is their turn to draw, but because they are focused on playing a game and winning points for their team, they forget all about their nervousness and that everyone is “staring” at them.
  3. It allows them to see that I have a fun side and that I don’t want everything to be serious, serious, serious all the time.

So, after we finished up the lecture over supporting materials and evaluating resources, we played Pictionary, and then I started the lecture over outlining.  We didn’t get very far, but that’s okay because it ties in nicely with the chapter that we will be discussing on Tuesday.  Before, I would get all out of sorts if we didn’t get through the material on the day that I had planned, but now I am getting a little more comfortable and I try to remind myself that it is o.k.– we can just cover it the next class period.  There is no sense in rushing through the material or leaving gaps or holes in the information because the students are not going to understand it that way.  And then I acted surprised that we ran out of time and handed out the quiz and told them to do it for homework.

Here are a few shots of the outfit without the blazer. I always have to make sure that I have a layering or topper piece for my freezing cold office, but the classroom is usually a normal temperature and I don’t need the topper.
Overall, I felt good about the choices that I made: giving the quiz as a homework assignment and making time for Pictionary. Would you have done the same, or would you have chosen a different route? Please leave me a comment below, I love hearing your take on things.
-Carla

#4 for Day One

Hey there!  Welcome to the beginning of Fall semester 2012.  Oh, wait– you’re not one of my students.  Sorry, I’ve been in “first week mode.”  Let’s get right down to it, the winner of the poll was Outfit 4.  If you didn’t get a chance to cast your vote, so sorry, but the poll is now closed.  I, personally, thought that Outfit 2 was the best first day outfit, but majority rules.  Side note: My dad voted for Outfit 2.  He said Outfit 4 made me look 10 years older with the sweater.  Thanks, Dad.

So, after that “endorsement” of Outfit 4 I wasn’t entirely thrilled that it was the winner, but I felt that I would somehow be letting down the handful of you that voted if I didn’t follow through and make good on my end of the deal.

Blue cardigan: Target. Ruffled printed tank: Target. Dark khaki skirt: (thrifted.) Blue and gold earrings: Target. Shell bracelet: Jewelry Superstore. Gold watch: Wal-Mart. Nude pumps: Target.

It was a good outfit for the first day of class.  I am glad that I wore the cardigan because even though it was mild and sunny outside, inside my office it was freezing.  I even put on another lightweight jacket that I grabbed on my way out the door.  My classroom was a little warmer, but not by much.

I had a full class (20 students) on my roster, but I only had 16 attend the first day of class.  But, I am really excited.  Oddly, I have twice as many guys as I do women– which is an anomaly.  So far, from what I can tell, I have a good group of students and it is going to be a fun semester.  I am super-duper excited to be teaching on main campus– it is a dramatic change from the satellite centers– it was a hustlin’ and a bustlin’ Tuesday night!

I did also want to share my new school bag with you. I picked it up a while ago for a measly $10! (Actually, that was the price on the tag, but I feel like it was less than that.) Anyway. It is a professional looking faux-crocodile (?) bag. The only concern that I have is that it is smaller than my old bag and may not be able to fit everything else that I cart to school with me (water bottle, lunch, walking shoes, etc.). We will just have to see!

What do you think? For those of you that voted, are you happy with your choice? For those of you that didn’t have the chance to vote, what do you think? Does this outfit say “Young Professional” to you?
-Carla

Copy Cat

 

Every semester starts out the same.  I am filled with many hopes and desires and feeling optimistic about the challenges that lie ahead.  But, somewhere in the middle, both the students and I start to wear thin.  Once we get to the end, we are just ready for it all to be over.  But, I have to start thinking about the next semester before the one that I am in is even over!  That is both good and bad.  Sometimes it can be all to easy to just give up on the current semester and turn your attention and focus towards starting anew with the next semester.  But, pulling it together and pushing through those roadblocks shows determination and perseverance.

I think that for Fall semester I am going to have to be more proactive and schedule a massage, or three, during those middle of the semester weeks that are particularly challenging.  I experienced the same thing with the Fall ’11 and Spring ’12 semesters.

Since Monday was the second to last day with my students I wanted to wear something that was a little more professional and classic.  And what better than a crisp white button-up shirt and khaki skirt?  The inspiration for this outfit comes from dual sources: Pinterest and my BF.  When I asked him what I should wear on Monday he said, “a pencil skirt and button up shirt.”  Which, is pretty much his standard answer.  (But that’s o.k., because it is one of my favorite outfit formula’s, too!)

I could have embellished with different jewelry, but since I’ve gotten this J.Crew knock-off bubble necklace I have only worn it once.  I wanted to wear it with contrasting colors of coral and salmon, but that didn’t pan out a few weeks back.  Although my outfit is very similar to the inspiration photo, it isn’t quite the same.  I chose to go with gold hoop earrings and my gold watch, while the inspiration photo pulls in more pops of turquoise with the bracelet and clutch.

Monday July 23, 2012
White button-up shirt: J.C. Penney. Bubble necklace: E-bay. Gold hoop earrings: Charlotte Russe. Khaki skirt: (thrifted.) Gold watch: Wal-Mart. Brown pointy-toed shoes: (thrifted.)

On Monday, I finished discussing Chapter 14: argumentation.  We discussed fallacies in reasoning and talked about how and why the textbook makes a distinction between persuasion and argumentation.  Then, I gave them a clean copy of a student’s outline and asked them to go through it and grade it using the same grading sheet that I use.  This is the activity that I tried a few week back that failed, miserably.

This time, it worked a little better.  Sadly, they finished the first one quickly, so I thought that they would have time to do a second one, but they were just able to finish it.  This way, each student received two peer-review sheets for their outlines and my preliminary grade sheet.  I should have left more time for discussion about the grading, but I think that it was still helpful–both for the students to practice giving and receiving feedback.  And, it was a dramatic improvement upon last time, so I am going to place it in the W-in category.

Wednesday will be my last day with these students.  Although I am glad that it will be over– it was a tough semester, it’s always a bittersweet ending!  They are required to dress professionally for their final speech, and I will be taking it easy in student wear–re: jeans and a t-shirt.  It’s a bit of fun little role reversal.

What do you think?  Do you like my interpretation of the inspiration photo?  Do you try to re-create outfits that you see on Pinterest, in magazines, or on other people?  Where do you draw inspiration from?

All About the Bling!

Last Saturday, I received my knock-off J. Crew Bubble necklace in the mail.  I purchased it off e-bay for $15.  There were several retailers to choose from and a myriad of colors available.  I chose a turquoise/minty color.  They also had a hot pink one that I was really fond of, but I wanted to just order one to start with in case it wasn’t everything that I had hoped it would be.

Sadly, I do have to admit that my longing for this necklace is due to its popularity with other style bloggers that I follow.  I have seen this necklace on nearly every one of these girls and hundreds of pins on Pinterest.  I have also read a handful of DIY posts on this iconic necklace, and even tried to replicate it myself.  (It didn’t work.  I was very sad.)

But it felt like Christmas when it came.  And I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that on Monday I wanted to create an outfit that hinged on this necklace.  First, I paired it with a white button-up shirt and a coral knife pleated skirt.  However, I couldn’t find my wide brown belt to finish off the look, the shirt wasn’t staying tucked in to the skirt, and the skirt was more sheer than I seem to recall.  I knew that all these little annoyances would make me uncomfortable and that is something that I just won’t put up with.  So, I changed.

Instead, I wore this mod-looking dress that I thrifted a while back.  The navy, white, and mint seemed perfect for a warm summer day.  And, it was a near match to my new necklace!  I accessorized with a tan and gold belt, nude pumps, and a gold watch and hoop earrings.  To top off the look I added some coral lipstick.  I actually wore a white short-sleeved cardigan over the dress while teaching–my classroom is air-conditioned, thank goodness, but I neglected to take any photo’s with the cardigan on.  Mea culpa.

Dress: (thrifted.) Necklace: e-bay. Belt: (thrifted.) Gold earrings: Charlotte Russe. Gold watch: Wal-Mart. Nude pumps: Target.

Do you ever do that? Do you create an entire outfit around one piece or accessory? Sometimes, I find it easier to build an outfit when I have a starting point. I think the next time I wear this necklace, I want to wear it with contrasting colors.

Weekend Edition: Reunion

Sunday, my BF and I traveled about an hour south of our apartment for his annual family reunion.  In the several years that he and I have been together, I have been to this event twice.  Having been there before, I was able to confidently select an outfit that would be appropriate for this event.

First, it is held in the basement of a brick school building.  The room where everyone gathers to eat a pot-luck lunch is not air-conditioned, what-so-ever.  Some people bring an oscillating fan which they plug into the various outlets to help circulate the air.  If it is a sweltering hot day (like in year’s past) it can be almost unbearable in the basement of the building.

Secondly, there are games for the kids outside on the playground and baseball for the young adults and grown-ups.  These two events take place outside in the summer heat (or rain, if that’s the case) with very little shade available.  For those who don’t partake in the kids games or baseball, there is a shade tree in front of the school where they set up camp and sit and catch-up.

Given that this is such a varied event, dressing appropriately can be a challenge.  Sometimes, due to the heat, I have felt like wearing nothing but a swimsuit.  However, that would not be appropriate.  Also, sitting down and having dinner and socializing is one type of event, while being active and playing games is another.

Two weeks ago when I was at Target they had some summer staples on sale.  One of the items that I picked up was a sleeveless ruffled top for $5.  It is one of those basic items that I knew would come in handy, either to wear now in the summer months, or to layer with in the coming months.  Plus, it is casual and comfortable to wear alone, but it can also be a base element in a dressier, work-appropriate, outfit.  And, it was cheap!

Last week, when I was at Old Navy they were having a shorts sale.  In years past, I haven’t worn shorts very much and consequently I have very few pairs.  I wasn’t in the mood to try things on, so I just bought one pair of printed shorts for $10. Even though I didn’t purchase these two items to be specifically worn together, or for this event, it just so happened that they were a match made in heaven!

Sun hat: Target. Gold swirl earrings: Target. White sleeveless ruffle shirt: Target. Gold necklace: J.C. Penney. Brown belt: Wal-Mart. Printed shorts: Old Navy. Gold watch: Wal-Mart. Sandals: Target.

I added gold and brown accessories to complete the look.  These included gold earrings, a long gold necklace, a brown belt, a straw sun hat, and sandals with brown, gold, and bronze straps.  I was cool and comfortable all day long– from lunch in the basement of the school, to the playground for kids games, to the bleachers for baseball, and under the shade tree socializing.  And, not to mention that I received plenty of compliments on my hat and my outfit.


I liked this outfit very much! Since I bought the straw hat I have only worn it a few times. Remembering to wear it can be a bit of a challenge. I have also worn it while shopping/running errands and to the pool, once. I was very proud of myself and my outfit! I am also smitten with this red-orange color that I used to paint my toenails. This will certainly be an outfit that I pack for our Florida vacation this coming Fall.