The Little Things In Life!

In my life summer equals absolute bliss. A time of simply enjoying life. This summer as I commute in and out of NYC each day I have some time to think to myself and appreciate the little things in life. Here is a list of 50 “little things” that keep me going each day!

1. The sounds of NYC

2. Realizing you love what you do

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3. My sorority

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4. Making new friends

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5. Catching up with old friends

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6. Family

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7. Grandma’s cooking

8. Lilly Pulitzer Season

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9. Eating an entire pizza and bottle of wine with your best friends 

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10. Swimming in the bay 

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11. The first sip of iced coffee in the morning

12. Channing Tatems abs

13. Conversations at midnight 

14. New adventures

15. Laughing at nothing

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16. Afternoon naps

17. Cannon balls in the pool

18. Walking hand-in-hand in silence

19. Pretending your in a music video when you listen to your IPod on the street

20. My little sisters passion for fashion

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21. A sorority sister who treats you like her real sister

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22. Pillow talk

23. A shower after a day at the beach

24. Hydrangeas

25. Him

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26. The smell of brand new shoes

27. Southampton Village

28. Meeting a sister from across the country but still having that inseparable bond

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29. An ice cream cone on a hot night

30. Popped Polos 

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31. Jack Rogers

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32. The Hamptons

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33. Hot Yoga

34. Talking about sorority recruitment

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35. My cousins

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36. Tasting new food

37. Saving up and buying yourself something really nice

38. Being confident without make-up

39. Reading your own work, published.

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40. Having options

41. When your favorite song comes on shuffle

42. Snuggling 

43. Dressing like an adult but acting like a child

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43. Talking to strangers

44. Pink lemonade

45. Norts 

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46. The smell of fresh-cut grass

47. Getting home from a hard day at work and not having homework

48. Bows

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49. Sorority hand signs & the horizon

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50. Summer

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Dear UIFI,…..

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Dear, UIFI

When I first sat down to write this post my thoughts were impossible to put into words. Now that it has been a little over a week of processing my experience at the NIC’s Undergraduate Inter-Fraternity Institute I can finally verbalize the impact that this week has made on my life.

A year ago I stepped off the airplane from New York, timid and looking to meet some Fraternity men that would sweep me off my feet while getting a leg up in the upcoming election for chapter President. Little did I know I would gain the experience of a lifetime. The improvements that I have made in my life had made me a happier person, a more confident collegian, and a values-based sorority woman. I started changing myself to be the woman I pledged to be in my Sigma Kappa Sorority initiation ceremony. A woman who possessed the values of loyalty, service, personal growth and friendship.

There is no doubt that I have veered from this path a few times in the last year and looking back on it now disappoints me immensely. However, I know that changing yourself doesn’t happen over night and the reality check I got from being a UIFI intern was exactly what I needed to start over and put personal feelings aside and be the true Sigma Kappa that I want to be.

Attending UIFI this year as an intern was not a symbol of status saying that I was the best leader in my chapter or in the Greek system (because I know I’m not). To me it was an extension of what I promised to do when I left the year before, it was me continuing to live my values and be an active participant in the Fraternal Movement. I also attended to further my education in how I can help my chapter and as a rising senior ways I can help the current reality of Greek life after I graduate.

Frequently throughout my trip in Bloomington, Indiana I was asked what do you want to do after graduation. Time and time again I responded with, “I want to be an LC but I don’t think I have what it takes or the right resume to do the job.” At the end of the trip I left the Alpha Xi Delta house with tears running down my face fearing that this would be the last time that I would be surrounded by strong, influential, and motivating leaders in the Greek community. After seeing the difference in the participants at the end of the week was inspiring and actually brought me tears thinking that I could have potentially made a small impact in at least one student. After this I discovered what my true passion in life is, that being Sigma Kappa and the Greek community.

Seeing the support, confidence and motivation that they all gave me throughout the week was empowering and I want to be surrounded by this forever. Whether I am a Leadership Consultant or an active volunteer for Sigma Kappa for the rest of my life I am determined to change the reality of Greek life and give back to the community that has given me so much.

That being said, I would like to thank the entire staff and participants of UIFI Session 6 2012 (Iota Iota) and 2013 (Iota Upsilon) for helping me find myself, for letting me know my leadership is not worthless, and motivating me to continue to do what I love. Most will never understand the changes I have made in my life to be as happy as I am today, they don’t understand why I cry because I care so much, and they won’t understand who I truly am. I thank those who took the time to talk, to understand and to learn about me, something I am not use to and something I will strive to do for others.

Loyally In Sigma Kappa,

Marie

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A College Girls Guide to the Kentucky Derby!

Derby Week is finally here and I can’t help but wish I was enjoying a mint julep as I graze the winners circle, of course decked out in a Lilly shift completed with a monogramed derby hat. Instead I guess I have to deal with Boston University’s version of the Kentucky Derby, the frat-tastic national philanthropy of the gentlemen of Sigma Chi Fraternity. This however is no excuse to not keep up with the Derby style. Just because we are surrounded by skyscrapers and not acres of green lawn doesn’t mean we should deprive ourselves of the preppy dream that is the Kentucky Derby.

Here is a college girls guide to the Kentucky Derby!

1. Don’t be afraid to standout.

Who cares if you are the brightest and most colorful one on the street? Not me. Be confident and rock that Lilly dress. My pick of sundress this week is the Lilly Pulitzer Lacina Dress in Resort White Just Add Mint!

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2. Wear a derby hat

Go to the Marley Lilly website right now and order a monogramed (or with your favorite greek letters) derby hat for overnight delivery! Yes, this is ridiculous and definitely not the norm in Boston but it might be slightly more acceptable this week.

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3. Be a total Prepster

Pop the collar of your polo and rock your Sperry’s because this is what we live for. Be sure to check out Vineyard Vine’s Kentucky Derby collection for they are the official sponsor of the Kentucky Derby.

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4. Make memories

Enjoy this time with your sisters as you compete for the Derby championship. Make memories that will last a lifetime as you stand across from your fellow Panhellenic sisters in tug-of-war and help the losing team up off the ground. Stir up some make-shift mint juleps in your apartment with your sisters between classes. Root on your sister at Derby Queen and help these fraternity men achieve a goal. At the end of the week you will be tired, burnt-out, and ready for a weekend of sleep but you won’t be disappointed.

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“Being Happy Never Goes Out Of Style” – Lilly Pulitzer

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This weekend the fashion world lost one of their geniuses. Although some may say her styles were dated she never intended to follow the trends of the fashion industry. She worked to the beat of her own drum and successfully created one of America’s most noticeable brands. Lilly Pulitzer has become a part of American history as some of America’s “royalty” was commonly spotted sporting their classic Lilly shifts.

Lilly Pulitzer died earlier this week at age 81 in the birthplace of her legacy, Palm Beach Florida. Although Lilly was no longer the CEO of Lilly Pulitzer she is still the face and the name behind the brand and remained a consultant for the company. Lilly lovers, including myself still look to Lilly as a fashion icon and an entrepreneurial role model.

The Lilly Pulitzer brand began in the 1958 when she worked at her husband’s orange grove selling juice. At times the juice would splash on her white comfortable clothes she would wear to work, soon customers would not only want the juice she was selling but the colorful dresses she was wearing. These juice splattered dresses inspired her to open her own line of dresses. The collection was originally designed for young women, because at the time Lilly was a young designer. As the years went on Lilly is targeted to the daughters and granddaughters of those who remember Lilly when she started. 

Being a Lilly lover isn’t just about wearing the brightly colored traditional shifts, it was about living the Lilly Lifestyle. The Lilly motto is, “The Lilly girl is always full of surprises. She lives every day like it’s a celebration. Never has a dull moment, and makes every hour a happy hour.” Lilly lived every day with excitement and just wearing her clothes gives off this sense of energy.

For me Lilly Pulitzer has always been a constant in my life and my family. From picking out my very first shift when I was six in the Splash of Pink store in Southampton, to matching my little sister on vacations at The Breakers, meeting my grandma for a round of golf both in Lilly head to toe, to walking into the NYC store for my very first interview, and wearing my sorority print on my college campus, Lilly has been an inspiration in every phase of my life.  

Whether you are strolling down Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, Jobs Lane in Southampton, or Madison Ave in New York if you are wearing a “Lilly” you will be smiling, happy, and noticed by all and Lilly will be proud. 

 

5 Steps to Coping with Your Losing Team: The Diary of a Mets Fan

Spring is finally here and baseball season is buzzing. Being a New York native and a Met’s fan (go ahead, point and laugh) this is the most glamorous part of the season. You better believe I am enjoying every minute of this short-lived victory.

 

However, soon enough we will start losing and you must look past the game and appreciate the other joys of baseball… So when your team is losing, your friends are laughing at you, and you still have three quarters of the season left, follow these steps.

 

5 Steps to Coping with Your Losing Team

 

1. Eat

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Forget that summer diet! Being at a baseball game is the one good excuse to eat hot dogs, cracker jacks, and Ice Cream (with the souvenir cup of course) completely guilt free! So when it’s the 7th inning and your team is losing, you don’t even have to leave your seat, just eat your emotions.

 

2. Take Advantage of the Vulnerable Fans

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Confession: I own this shirt. Let’s be real, when the pain is becoming too much to bare find an alternate solution for pleasure.

 

3. Explore the Ballpark!

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There is a reason Citi Field is so nice, it is a distraction from the score.

 

 4. Drool Over The Players

 

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Derek Jeter is the one Yankee I don’t mind. For obvious reasons, of course. So when your team is losing pretend the scoreboard doesn’t exist and remember you have a field full of men in tight pants to look out for hours!

 

5. Drink!

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This is the most preferred way of coping for us Met’s fans. The reason we keep going back is because we can’t remember what happened at the last game.

 

 

Shoe Obsession: The Museum

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I’m a shopaholic. I’m sure some of you can sympathize with me when I say, “shoes are a necessity.” It is true! You NEED shoes you don’t NEED other things. Shoes are that one thing that immediately overrides my shopper’s guilt as the devil on my shoulder quickly convinces me that they are a worth more than your first born child. As a proud owner of well over 75 pairs of shoes, I should probably stop but to me shoes are what complete an outfit.

Although I am usually spotted in a pair of riding boots or my Sperry top-siders my closet is a mecca of shoe porn, from spiked red sling backs to blue suede pumps and even a few pairs of sequenced Toms. Excuse me as I give myself props for my diversity.

To be honest I am a pretty boring dresser so when I add a unique pair of shoes to my wardrobe I feel a little bit less lame (perhaps this shoe obsession is a coping mechanism?). Luckily I am not the only one out there looking for unique and quirky shoes to spice up their closet because the Fashion Institute of Technology’s new “Shoe Obsession” exhibit is all the rage in NYC (BRB booking my Amtrak ticket). Yes you read correctly, a shoe museum featuring the best shoes of the 21st century. Sorry Mr. Guggenheim but I think I’m going to have to opt out on this NYC trip.

The collection definitely screams, “A Night in NYC with Lady Gaga” but when you are wearing shoes this hot there is no such thing as a BAD ROMANCE. except maybe the one with your bank….

Here are a few of my favorites! (somebody hide my credit card before it is too late!)

Azzedine Alaia, 2011

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Tom Ford, Spring 2012

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Masaya Kushino, 2008

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Christian Luboutin, 2007

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Prada, Spring 2012

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Noritaka Tatehana, 2012

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Alright, I know what you’re thinking, “I could never pull of any of these shoes.” You’re right. I can’t, but let a girl dream!

Image Source: Fashionista (http://fashionista.com/2013/03/valerie-steele-talks-shoe-obsession-plus-see-some-shoe-porn/3jte7eucbf5aortm_cl71i6nal0xugvfd5vmtkseby0vwvjysdenk3lhmezniisudub8-rvklcbhc7s-jnfn

 

 

How Instagram Brightens My Day

So I’m trying to love Instagram. With a feed full of pictures of someone’s lunch, a snowy building, the city skyline, and way too many awkward selfies of my friends, is there really anything to love? As much as the sneak daily peak into my friend’s lives is nice I need more than a sandwich with the “earlybird” filter to keep me coming back.

My current obsession is the Lilly Pulitzer Instagram 5X5 collection. These are daily customized artwork made by the Lilly Pulitzer print designers.  As a Lilly lover it is hard to get my daily dose of Lilly when living in Boston where the snow banks are taller than I am and I walk in a sea of dark hued cotes. These Instagram 5X5’s keep me sane through the winter until I can return to my pastel floral days.

Check out these recent Lilly Pulitzer 5X5’s!

Fat Tuesday

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Image Source: Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/VpZjNXiXeQ/)

Chinese New Year

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Image Source: Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/Vm1MOhCXVd/)

When Nemo Hit!

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Image Source: Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/Vm1MOhCXVd/)

Super Bowl Sunday

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Image Source: Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/Vm1MOhCXVd/)

Hump Day

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Image Source: Instagram (http://instagram.com/p/Vm1MOhCXVd/)

Who knew Instagram could actually have real artwork, right? Seeing this in the sea of wannabe hipster photos gives me some hope for art world, even if this is still just Instagram.

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year: The Release of Lilly Pulitzer’s Spring Collection!

IT IS THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR! I am a Lilly lover through and through but if I had to pick my ultimate favorite thing about Lilly Pulitzer it would be the Spring Collection.

If you ask anybody who knows me they will tell you that I am head over heels in love with Lilly. As an avid Lilly wearer I can make Lilly work all year long but the Spring collection has a special place in my heart. Printed + Pastels = PERFECTION!

Lilly is for the classic girl who isn’t afraid to stand out and this collection nailed it!!

Here are a few of my favorites!

1. The Joslin Dress $228

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I might just need to plan something just to wear this dress!

2. The Lacinda Dress, $228

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I can never resist Lilly’s detailed necklines! I call these Sassy Shifts!

3. The Lowe Dress, $188

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This dress is perfect for sorority formals!!

4. Nelle Jacket, $258

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As a PR girl this outfit is perfect for any summer internship!

5. Harwin Dress, $328

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VINTAGE VINTAGE VINTAGE!

6. The MarieKate Dress, $378

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A Lilly MUST-HAVE! I have it in white but this “Flutter Blue Go To Batt” is creeping on to my Spring wishlist!

**All Photos are from http://www.lillypulitzer.com

Losing Is Winning

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Would you rather win or lose? The obvious answer of course would be, win. As a competitive person in about everything I do I get high off the feeling of accelerating above others, receiving a trophy and having your named called as first place.

Not to be sound obnoxious but in high school winning was my thing. I was in all AP classes, varsity cheerleading captain (obviously dating the varsity football captain), captain of a competitive dance team, president of peer support, prom princess, and you better believe I campaigned to win some superlatives for the senior year yearbook. 

 

Going to college I figured that things would follow suit, my perfect life would continue to lift me higher and for a while it did. Grades, great. Friends, even better. The summer after my freshman year I was exactly the same as when I left 9 months later, still winning. 

 

In the past six months I have had a series of unfortunate events. Okay, to be honest they weren’t that unfortunate but the reason I’m so dramatic about this is because I realized this was the first time in my life I did not get what I wanted, the first time I was loosing (aren’t I brat). I lost my phone, I lost my North Face fleece, I lost my dignity a few times, I lost the election for my sorority President, and I lost my best friend who I thought was the love of my life. 

 

However, the last 6 months of my life have been the best 6 months. Today when I was walking down Commonwealth Avenue I got splashed by a car driving through a puddle, and a voice in my head immediately said, “WHY MEEEEE!” My next thought was, I am never standing that close to the curb on a rainy day and thats when I realized, losing is learning and learning is winning. The answer to my confusion on why the past 6 months has been so enriching. Losing is Winning.  

 

When you lose you learn. From losing my phone I learned to never go to the bathroom with your phone in your back pocket. Losing my North Face fleece, never leave a fraternity house without your best friend because she would never let you walk in the cold. Losing my dignity continually teaches me just how much I should and should not drink on a Saturday night. Losing the position as president for my sorority taught me that you can be a leader without a label, it taught me be resilient, it taught me that you can sacrifice everything for one thing and you still won’t be good enough, it taught me who my real friends were and it taught me to never love anything more than you love yourself. Losing my best friend taught me that he really wasn’t my best friend, it taught me to respect myself as an individual and not to be afraid to be myself, it taught me that there are other people out there who love me and will treat me the way that I deserve. 

What did I learn from winning? I may have gained some leadership skills, its possible I pushed myself harder in cheerleading or dance but only losing can teach you about life. 

Well this was sappy and you are all probably rolling your eyes at this screen but you did read the whole thing! Go Lose! 

Inauguration 2013: Presidentially Poised

Forget the beginning of President Obama’s second term; this is the beginning of something great for the fashion world of America. From the presidential peacoats to the state-of-the –art ball gowns that graced Washington D.C. Monday evening it looks like we have a stunning four years ahead of us.

 

What is worn at the presidential Inauguration is vital to our fashion destiny for the next four years and thankfully we are off to a good start. You think I’m joking? Fact check!  In 1993 Hilary Clinton wore a dashing “Toddlers and Tiara’s” look alike dress to her husband’s inauguration ball. Do you know what our country experienced? These were the years of nylon windbreakers, platform shoes, belly shirts and overalls. America was clearly fashion disoriented.

 

Luckily, it looks like our fashion future is in the clear. If America follows the Obama’s lead in their poised perfection we are all going to give Kate Middleton a run for her money!

 

Here are my favorite inaugural fashion statements!

  1. The Peacoats

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Photo Source: NPR (http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/01/21/169914098/when-it-comes-to-inaugural-fashion-first-family-stays-the-course)

 

  1. The Ball Gowns

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Photo Source: http://shine.yahoo.com/photos/inaugural-fashion-2013-michelle-obama-slideshow/-photo-2571546-223000840.html

 

  1. Even Ke$ha locked it up with some patriotic pride

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Photo Source: CBS News (http://www.cbsnews.com/2300-207_162-10015524-19.html)

  1. The Crew-Necked Trio

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Photo Source: NPR (http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/01/21/169914098/when-it-comes-to-inaugural-fashion-first-family-stays-the-course)

 

  1. Jill Biden’s Oversized Bow

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Photo Source: New York Times (http://shine.yahoo.com/photos/inaugural-fashion-2013-michelle-obama-slideshow/-photo-2571339-223000150.html)

 

So America, put on your pearls because we are headed for another 4 years of elegance!