As someone who has navigated a tricky school dress-code for four years I have learned the in’s & out’s of difficult dress-codes. I’m such a rule follower that it is my absolute goal to not be dress-coded my entire time in high school & I haven’t been called down to the office yet! My schools dress-code tends to change a bit each year but the overall concepts are the exact same: professional, clean and modest. Because I do dress pretty conservatively already it isn’t a huge issue but there are a few things I have learned.
The most important thing I stress is finding pants that fit your body type & that fit your dress-code. This has taken many years of trial and error but the Old Navy Harper & Pixie pants both are a great pick for girls with curves. I’ve had my Harper’s since sophomore year and they still look good, investing in good solid pairs helps in the long run.
Sometimes, actually a lot of the time I am incredibly lazy getting dressed in the morning. I probably shouldn’t admit that on a blog with fashion content, but I’m a Seventeen-year-old girl so it’s true. Junior year was the year of effortless dresses. While some of them aren’t the most flattering, I relied on baggy dresses which I wore year round.
As someone who does like to have fun with clothes though, accommodating to dress-codes can be irritating to “fit trends,” which is where unique details come in. I have found myself not shopping at thrift stores for main pieces (i.e. shirts, pants, skirts) but for accessories, shoes & jackets to spend less yet change outfits completely. I found a vintage colorful Brooks Brother blazer freshman year that is one of my go to pieces for changing up my wardrobe in the spring. Another find was a pair of C Wonder (RIP) chevron block heels that aren’t high but add a major pop to any outfit.
It’s easy to complain about dress-codes, trust me, I know. But the more you learn to “suck up” the idea of “baggy butt pants” and work with what you have, the easier it will be. You may not be wearing the latest style of off the shoulder tops every day but it does make wearing them on the weekends more fun.
While sometimes it is easy for me to complain about living in Raleigh, one of the best parts are the crazy amount of quirky coffee shops. My best friend & fellow coffee addict Kat now have a coffee shop bucket list of places we want to try and are slowly making our way down the list.
On my list was BREW, a trendy coffee shop with two locations in the Raleigh area. One of them being in downtown Cary, attached to an old referbished movie theater. I always used to roll my eyes at downtown Cary because of the constant construction and that nothing was ever going on. But slowly they have been revamping it & I camped out in the small library for the first half of Junior year.
BREW was packed but Kat and I found a small cozy corner to talk our afternoon away. I ordered an almond milk latte, really any place that has a good almond milk latte automatically wins & it came in a mason jar. Great coffee + cute aesthetic = happy basic teenage girl. Something that adds to the awesomeness was the incredibly helpful staff. I can’t have dairy (a tragedy I know) or caffeine and the staff was super helpful to work with me to find a drink that I could not only eat but enjoy!
Proof that I really liked it? I went back last week with my mom and again, it was awesome.
If you live in the Raleigh area, leave suggestions for other coffee shops to add to our list & I’ll share my thoughts!
The thing with stories is that they have many chapters. Some are good, some are bad but they are sections and phases.
When I was first diagnosed with PCOS & lost 25ish pounds, there was freedom. I wrote a blog post, which has been my most shared article yet and that post was picked up by Girls Life Magazine a few months after. After that, I realized my purpose in blogging & fell in love with writing content for my new readers: (mostly) teen girls in search of an unfiltered voice. After my trip to London & a summer filled with traveling, I found myself back at my high weight. Yes, I had some good moments. But I never felt in control.
I haven’t been as open on the blog this past school year as I probably should have. I didn’t want to seem whiny or complaining 24/7. But this past school year brought one of the hardest seasons of my life. (I roll my eyes at typing that because I know harder things are ahead, but as of right now.) I didn’t have full control of my eating. Luckily my sanity was found in throwing myself into my student government position, spin classes, and daily journaling. That all still wasn’t enough.
Because my health was not consistently healthy I found myself bound to anxiety: I pushed almost all of my friends away, ate lunch while studying alone in a teacher’s classroom, didn’t attend any school basketball games and wrote only a handful of blog posts. I resented blogging because I was surrounded by “fit” women with picture perfect lives all matching an Instagram theme. I lost touch with my blog because I tried so hard to be this mold of what gained followers and likes.
My weight reached it’s highest point the second week of June, right when I burnt out after planning prom & a chaotic exam week.
This pushed my anxiety to its highest point it has ever been. I didn’t want to leave my house, was constantly tired and “snippy” with everyone. But I finally had my friends asking to do things, my planner overflowing with to-do lists, all of the things that were supposed to make me “happy”. But I still was ashamed to take pictures of myself, cried a bit too much and found any excuse to worry. So my parents (unbelievably thankful for them) told me to quit my summer job and took on a few internships I am genuinely passionate about, giving me enough time to put my health as a priority.
The past few weeks haven’t been easy though. To fully put your health first becomes a job, something easy to throw to the side, hence why I lost the balance before. Just because I now have time to work on my health doesn’t mean it’s truly easier. I’ve been faced with a roller coaster of emotions and still have not fully “detoxed” myself from the awful sugar cravings.
A few nights ago, after a week of eating and exercising, finally starting to feel like myself again, I gave in to a tub of cookie dough. That spurred a sleepless night of anxiety, tears, and frustration. Then came the battle with my sugar cravings yet I felt this weird push to keep going. Then while working on blog content, the first time writing a post in two months, I got a call from my mom telling me that Girls Life had posted my article about my health on their website. Now I don’t know what you believe in this life if there is a God or not, but if that isn’t a sign to keep going and keep sharing, I don’t know what is.
So my story won’t be picture perfect. It’s not going to be light pink and covered with polka dots all wrapped up in a pretty bow. It doesn’t have a matching Lilly Pulitzer pattern. It isn’t covered with sprinkles or is even really “Instagram-worthy.” But I have been given a platform to share my story, regardless of how “sucky” it is. What I am going through is for something so much bigger than myself. And that’s how I have to approach my blog content. I won’t be forcing myself into a box to write what every other blogger is talking about, regardless if it “brings followers” or not.
From my first attempt at a blog post last week, the first time in awhile.
I have been given the tools and opportunities to improve my health & share my story, so now I have no excuse not to try. Bear with me sweet readers, things aren’t going to be all “J.Crew sale” or picture perfect, but I can promise you it will be a whole lot more authentic & really truly, more Maggie.