Monday, December 31, 2012

[Blogging] Top Posts of 2012

Since today is the last day of 2012, I thought it was only fitting to recap the top 5 posts of the year. I wasn't quite sure how to attack this - I have blogger stats (which most of us know to be quite skewed), Google Analytics stats (which are pretty true to form - however, when I redid my blog layout, there was a week or two where the code was missing and views weren't reported), and then there is the fact that a number of my most viewed posts were from non-outfit related posts, like a giveaway or a linkup, and I wasn't sure if they should count. I think I'll just fly by the seat of my pants here and see what we come up with.

I'm going to ignore blogger - I think those stats are all kinds of wrong. Let's look at the top 5 of all posts:

5. A Letter to my 90 Year Old Grandmother
I have to say, I'm not surprised. When I look at what drives the most search traffic to my blog, this is one of two recurring search terms.

4. About Me page
This one really surprised me. The number 4 most visited entry on my blog wasn't a blog entry at all, but my about me page! Interesting.

3. Marion's Trend of the Month: Boots
I really liked this one myself!

2. Marion's Trend of the Month: Pattern-Mixing
Again, another of Marion's fabulous linkups! I also really liked this one. Personally, I think the pics from this post are some of the nicest ones I've taken! Unfortunately for me, the park that I took these in (which is right across the street from my office park!) has decided to lock their gates and now I can't get in again to take any more. Boo!

And the number one most popular post on my site is......

Kate Middleton, Stuart Weiztman shoes

1. Kate Middleton's Corkswoon wedges - lookalike!
This was the other search term that brings a ton of traffic to my blog.

Overall, I learned a few things:
  • I get a lot of traffic from linkups. Looking at the top 10 most visited posts, 4/10 were linkups. 3/10 were giveaways. And the remaining 1 was the about me page.
  • I get great traffic from search words, but the stuff people search for that brings them to my blog are things that are one-offs from what I usually write. I've thought about incorporating the same type of posts as the lookalike post, but I think when people find my blog from that search, they pop in and pop out, and don't come back. That's not the kind of traffic I want, nor do I want my blog to be all about lookalike items. There are other blogs out there for that! Maybe I'll incorporate more as time goes by.
  • My outfit posts were some of the least viewed. I'd like to think that's because my blog is in its early growing stages. Currently, my blog is getting about 400 views/month. My goal for next year is 1,000/month by June and maybe double that by this time next year.
Now...what were my favorite posts of the year? Top 3:

2. Inspired: Break My Bank

I'm not surprised all these posts are newer - my style has gotten better and better the more that I blog!

And I have one last honorable mention - specifically because I would have never worn a dress as a skirt before I was a style blogger!!!

And don't forget to check out my very first vlog!!!


Sunday, December 30, 2012

[Life] The Happiest of Holidays

It's been over a week since I posted on this here blog and I can firmly say it was a wonderful week! I really wanted to be focused on the little bit of time I had with family, and not be distracted by my blog, so it was a hiatus well used.

For Christmas, the husband and I drove up to PA to my parents house for the holidays. We got to see some friends and family, and it was a wonderful 4 days at home.

The hubs and I on Christmas Eve....

Christmas morning...the tree couldn't hold it all!!!

We also woke to a white Christmas that had started the night before as we were headed to the Christmas Eve church service.

The family...

And my brother's job has been to hand out the presents since he was probably about 5.

 My hubby gave me a diamond bracelet for Christmas!!!

My brother and his girlfriend...

Stockings, including one for Lexi!

The aftermath....

Our family tradition is for my dad and I to make a huge brunch after we're done with presents. It was delish!

Hope everyone's holiday was as wonderful as mine!!

[Shopping] My First Vlog. Yes, Vlog.

Soooo...I've watched so many "haul videos" by other bloggers out there and decided to give it a try myself. I'm going to do up to 3 videos, I think - the first one here will be what I got at the pre-Christmas sales and a few items from the post-Christmas sales, with stuff I got for Christmas and the rest of post-Christmas sales to come.

In the video, I mentioned that these were all post-Christmas but that's not correct. In this particular video, only the stuff from Payless and Old Navy are post-Christmas. I was originally planning to put them all together, so it would have made more sense I guess, but as I was taping the video was SOOOOO long and I didn't want to bore the crap out of anyone. And I wanted to get this first piece up ASAP because I mention a few coupons that expire tomorrow.

Anyway - enjoy my very first vlog!

Friday, December 21, 2012

[Life] Very Short Haitus

Hello amazing readers!

I know it's been a bit quiet here this week...and it will continue to be so until next week. I'm heading to PA to spend some time with my family for Christmas, and am not planning on posting much here during that time. I figure many of you are doing the same thing. We can reconvene next week. :)

Have a wonderful holiday!!

Monday, December 17, 2012

[Inspired] She Make Me Wanna Break My Bank

 It seems a bit strange to post something trivial like this without having mentioned the tragedy in Newtown. However, there is little left to be said that hasn't been said already. I will say only this: my heartfelt prayers go out to all those affected by this horrific event. It is tragic and heartbreaking. I pray those affected find the strength to move forward, one day at a time. I will be participating in the blogger day of silence tomorrow.

Hello new people! Welcome readers from The Tiny Heart!! If you're new to these parts, check out this post to learn a little more about yours truly and this blog. I hope you'll stick around!

This week, I'm taking some time to pay homage some of my favorite looks from some of my favorite bloggers! It's a week of inspired looks that I was super excited to interpret.

Today's outfit wasn't worn by a blogger, but was put together by one!

Sweater: Gap (winter 2011) | Jeans: F21 | Boots: Shoeland (here) | Vest: Old Navy (old)

This outfit collage appeared over at College Prepster and I immediately pinned it. I loved the look of pairing the same color vest and shoe, and the pop of purple is great. I don't have a ton of purple in my wardrobe and I forgot about this great sweater!


Thursday, December 13, 2012

[OOTD] Time Out, Time to Take a Stop

Today's outfit post contains the final t-shirt outfit, answering the question: Can I wear a t-shirt to work? Even if I work in a dressier office?

I like to think you can!

Please excuse the wrinkly skirt, this was late in the day!

Tee: Primark via UK | Skirt: Target | Blazer: Burlington Coat Factory (old) | Shoes: Payless | Necklace: New York & Company

I really thought that it would be tough to make a t-shirt work in a dressier outfit but this was surprisingly easy!

Have you ever been able to sneak in a t-shirt in a more dressy environment?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

[Shopping] Booties, Booties, Booties, Booties, Rockin Everywhere!

Please tell me someone got the Bubba Sparxxx reference in the title. Please.

I have been seeing booties all over the place this fall/winter. All you lovely blogging ladies are looking adorable in your booties. I have never owned a pair of booties. I think it's a combination of me not knowing how to wear them and the fact that I have never tried on a pair and thought "these look great!".

Most of you ladies are wearing booties with a skirt. I don't know if you've noticed, but I don't tend to wear a lot of skirts. I wear mostly pants. And sometimes dresses, but much more in the summer than in the cooler months. So, what I need from you is the answer to this: Do I buy a pair of booties?

Here's the situation: I was shopping the other day, and tried on these cute little black booties. They're kind of like this:

Nine West Haywire

But they're this faux suede type material. I think it's important to note the style of the cut at the ankle. I want to buy them but I'm having a hard time justifying.

Pro: I actually think they're cute.
Con: I hardly wear skirts and I don't know how else to wear them. Under jeans they may as well be boots I already own, and they just look goofy with skinnies.

Pro: They're cheap - $16.
Con: Cheap is not a reason to buy when I already have plenty of shoes in my closet.

As you can see....I'm conflicted. What would you do?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

[OOTD] Locked Out of Heaven


Yesterday I posted a welcome post to the new followers I gained from sponsoring Shanna.

And I lost 2 followers.

I mean, I knew that was going to happen - sometimes we follow a blog because we have to in order to win something we want, and that blog isn't really our cup of tea. So we eventually or immediately unfollow. But I didn't figure it to happen in seemingly direct response to my WELCOME TO MY BLOG! post. Really, people. A bit of a slap in the face, no?

Oh, well. Their loss.

Because there are good things around the corner here. ;)  More on that later.

Today, though, I ask the question: Can I Wear a T-Shirt on a Date?

I say - YES!!! How? Oh, convenient you should ask!

Tee: Gap | Blazer: Ross | Jeans: JCPenney | Necklace: H&M | Shoes: Macy's

I have got to be honest. I have gotten way more use out of this blazer than I thought was possible when I first bought it. I really thought it might go with one or two things, and I'd wear it maybe a handful of times before striped blazers were no longer fashionable and off to Goodwill it'd go. Since it was only $13 I didn't worry about that too much. However, I've already worn it at least 10 times in the 2-3 months I've had it. It's surprisingly versatile!

As many of us know, blazers are a great way to add a classy twist to an outfit. And as I've consistently shown, a great way to punch up a tee!

How do you wear a t-shirt for date night?

Monday, December 10, 2012

[Random] Welcome and Polish Swap

First of all, I've spent the last week being a crappy blogger. I haven't looked at the blog, barely thought about the blog, haven't posted anything significant since over a week ago. Very unlike me. But you know what? I just didn't feel like it! I wasn't "too busy", I wasn't stumped for what to write...I just didn't feel like blogging. So, while I feel a little bad about abandoning my blog, especially with a whole bunch of new followers, I just kind of wanted the break. Rather ironic my blogging brain decided to take a vacation right about the time I got 50ish new followers thanks to my part in Shanna's giveaway.

So. In an attempt to turn new-followers-who-only-followed-because-Shanna-required-them-to-in-order-to-enter-the-giveaway-followers into followers-who-actually-want-to-follow-my-bloggy-blog-followers, I thought I'd take a cue from one of my favorite bloggers, Erin, and do a "what you should know" post. Ok, let's make that happen.

1. I love Christmas music. I am also a firm believer in the holidays being celebrated in proper time and order. This means I didn't listen to a single Christmas song until the day after Thanksgiving. Since then I've been listening to the 500+ of them I own on repeat. And nothing else. I think my hubby is sick of it already.

2. This is mainly a style blog. However, I'm not the most stylish. I try, but it's a trial of errors over here. I win some, I lose some, but hopefully I'm entertaining along the way.

3. I have a dog named Lexi and I'm obsessed with her. She randomly inserts herself into my pictures and I think it's hilarious.

4. I'm a bit shameless here on the blog. I broke my nose this past summer and shared this gorgeous picture. That is reason alone to stick around.

5. I have a husband. He's Indian with a British accent and sometimes I can't understand him. You'd think after 7 years together I'd have that all wrapped up.

6. I love high heels but they kill my feet. I will choose the pain of style over comfort solely because I feel so confident when I'm lifted up a few inches.

7. I am obsessed with cheese. I will put it on anything. And I will try any kind. Even the stinky kind. Doesn't make no mind to me. And if you tell me you don't like cheese, I'll look at you like you have 3 heads.

8. I'm a northerner at heart and Pittsburgh is the city that has my heart. If you have anything bad to say about Pittsburgh, keep it to yourself. I want nothing to do with that nonsense.

9. I'm on an exhibition dance team. Dancing is one of my favorite things in life. This is us:

10. I believe a friend and a glass of wine are all you need when you're feeling down.

Hopefully I've given you some kind of reason to stick around. I promise I'll be a better blogger after the last week, so don't give up on me so quick, yeah?

And now, the polish swap I've been meaning to write about for over a week now.

I participated in a polish swap that Carly at Lipgloss and Crayons put together. I am SO SLOW in blogging that I completely missed the link up. Anyway, I still thought I'd write about it.

I was partnered with Jessica over at The Only Ten I See. She sent me two lovely polishes - unfortunately, the US postal service was a little rough with her box and one of them was exploded upon arrival. :(

This is the polish that didn't make it:

Sally Hansen Greige Gardens

A bit of a bummer, because I really, really like this color!!!

The second polish, however, came out unscathed. Jessica's second pick was Fickle by SpaRitual:

I love the color on this one and am looking forward to trying it out this week.

Thanks so much to Jessica for picking out some awesome polishes for me!!!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

[Random] Sunday Soup #11

Let's jump right in, shall we?

The evil toddler meme is hilarious.

Wil Wheaton jumped on the dogshaming bandwagon.

Actual Advice Mallard. More here.

Christmas lights go Gangnam Style.

The greatest treadmill falls of all time.

Yeah....couldn't get through this one without tearing up.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

[Blogging] Bad Blogger

Just popping in to say I haven't forgotten about this blog! (I'm not entirely sure there's anyone out there who noticed, which is fine, but in case there was....)

This past weekend I was just not in the mood to blog. I was being completely lazy about it - and that's ok! But I had big plans to get a few posts ready for this week....and then I ran out of time on Sunday. And now I'm in Connecticut, back teaching at ESPN, and have no access to any of my pictures. So....there may or may not be another post until the end of the week. A weeklong haitus if you will.

Stick with me...I'll be back!