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Posted on Jul 25, 2012 in Dear Diary, Fashion | 18 comments

Closet Purge

Yesterday I felt sick (again). I have the immune system of a Bubble Boy, so this really came as no surprise. I took the day off from work to console myself, made a doctor’s appointment (though as I suspected, there wasn’t anything really wrong with me that he could fix. “Maybe it’s stress,” he said.) and in order to make sure I didn’t feel like a total lump, I got a few things done around the house.

Laundry was the main thing. Here’s the back story on my laundry habits, which will probably leave the majority of you in awe and disgust. I do laundry maybe like, once every 6 weeks. This is not because I am a hobo without access to a washing machine, it is because I am lazy. It also partially because my sister used to work as a buyer for Hecht’s/Macy’s, and started her illustrious career in women’s underwear. As such, I have enough underwear to last me through the entire zombie apocalypse (and then some). And because I am apparently a 19-year-old boy, I don’t usually feel the need to do laundry until I run out of underwear.

As my clothes were spin-cycling and rinse-cycling their little hearts out, I also decided that this would be a great opportunity to do a little purging. No, not that kind of purging, you crazy kids. The kind where I go through my closet and pull out all of the things that I no longer wear, no longer fit, or just generally need to go.

Evidently 4 bags of donation-bound clothing is the norm for me, since that’s how many I netted last time too. Which is why I feel okay reusing this blurry picture from last time, hahaha.

I’ve mentioned my hoarding tendencies more than a few times on here, and I quickly came to realize yesterday that this was another prime example of such. I went through a rather significant room cleaning extravaganza and ended up with four garbage bags full of stuff that went straight to Goodwill. This was, however, over a year ago now (one of the great things about having a blog like this? It’s like a super-detailed timeline of your life! Wait, maybe that’s not a good thing…) so it was definitely time.

I was actually pretty surprised at how willing I was to get rid of stuff. I really went all-out this time, including shoes and bags. Last time I kept a lot of stuff because of sentimentality, but I was a lot better about that this time. Some things were admittedly a little more heartbreaking to part with, but it was cathartic at the same time. After all, I’m probably getting a little bit old to keep multiple Hello Kitty zip-ups in my closet… and a Hello Kitty backpack… and a stuffed Spiderman backpack… need I go on? (Though you better believe I kept my Gryffindor jacket!). Ah well. Hopefully some lucky (and age appropriate) person will be able to thrift my wares for mere pennies and they will bring her (him?) joy.

Now the only trick will be making sure I don’t quickly fill up all my new closet space with MORE clothes. I already bought quite a few new pieces when Ai Rei was visiting (what, I HAD to show her Tyson’s Corner! It’s a landmark of the area!) I will say (and actually, have probably mentioned it before), that I am much more inclined to buy clothing more frequently now that I’m a smaller size. Back when I was a size 16/18/pushing 20, I would force myself to make maybe one big shopping trip each year to replace certain things, or get more work-appropriate clothing. Even though I love to shop (always have!), the experience would leave me downtrodden and with a lot of self-loathing (damn you, dressing room mirrors!).

I can’t say that I’m totally immune to those feelings now, but shopping for size 12 not only gives me more options in the “regular” stores, And because I generally feel better about how I look, it’s more fun! Now I’m much more inclined to go “for fun” shopping and pick up a shirt here, a new dress there, as opposed to one huge, multi-hundred-dollar, get-it-out-of-the-way trip per annum. I’m definitely not saying that you can’t look amazing or find chic clothing in plus-sizes. I was just too self-conscious and ashamed to take true advantage of it back then. Now? Not so much. In fact, I have to be careful…!

Be strong, Gretchen, be strong!

How often do you go through a closet purge? Are you a love-to-shop or shop-to-live kind of person when it comes to clothes?

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Posted on Jun 23, 2011 in Dear Diary | 18 comments

Boulder or Bust!

Howdy howdy, folks! Happy Thursday! Except, it’s really like Happy Friday for me (YAYYYYYYYYY!) because bright & early tomorrow I’m boarding a plane bound for Denver, CO! Why? For the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference taking place in Boulder, of course! I am very excited to be attending my second blogging conference, and am sure that I’ll be coming back with even more inspiration and passion for this li’l ol’ blog of mine (lucky you, eh? Hahaha.)


I’ll be rooming with Casey, and am really looking forward to meeting more people, as well as reuniting with some of my Fitbloggin’ pals! I just have to make sure I pack my bag much more mindfully, since I don’t have the luxury of driving back with all my swaaaag this time, hahaha.

Since I’ve been doing so much traveling lately , I have to admit that the condition of my room has been, uh, less than stellar. After all, what’s the point of unpacking a suitcase if you’ll just be packing it back up the next weekend, right? This week I did finally hit the breaking point of my slovenly living though, and it was time to finally do something about the warzone-room flashbacks I was having. I even ended up scrubbing my bathroom from top to bottom! And bonus? I got supah sweaty cleaning up, so I’m totally counting it as my workout for the day. 😉




Atrocious, I know. But! Have faith, my friends! It wasn’t long before all of that became all of this:



And the suitcase HAD to stay out, since I’m doing that whole traveling thing again starting tomorrow. But at least it’s not buried under a pile of dirty clothes anymore. Progress, right?

The bro and I took the pups over to the ‘rents for family dinner (another money-saving tip, in case you missed yesterday’s Weight Loss 101 installment!)


I think my mama would be very pleased with my productive afternoon.

Family BondingIMG_9129.jpg

Total resemblence, right? Hahahahahaha.

Who else is going to the conference in Boulder this weekend? Shout out! And for those of you who aren’t going to be there, what are your tips for staying healthy while traveling? I think it’s pretty obvious that if I continue spending as much time away from home as I have been, I need to start implementing some much better practices. This weekend I’m specifically traveling to a conference that centers around health & fitness, so I’m hoping the damage won’t be too bad, but still! Can’t hurt to have some tips/tricks to pull out of my pocket!

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Posted on Jan 26, 2011 in Dear Diary | 9 comments

Home Improvement

Okay, sorry for the mini-hiatus from blogging, friends. I was on a little Tim the Toolman Taylor (*grunt*) kick, and decided that I needed to do a serious rehaul of my disgustingly messy room. And you know, I figured it fit pretty well into the whole theme of starting fresh (yet again), and making sure I’m getting the second half of this diet off right.

Fair warning, what you are about to see may disturb you. I honestly am not a super messy person! But somehow between holidays and vacations and not spending very much time in my room I let things slide a little… to say the least:


I am not proud.

I was, however, ready to finally tackle the problem.


I just didn’t quite realize that it would take 2 full days, an entire bottle of sani-wipes, and 4 loads of laundry to do it. I think, in the end, it was definitely worth the effort though:


No judgement allowed on the fact that watching Charmed is my room-cleaning jam! Also, you might notice that I share the same comforter set as Anne, if you read her post on her apartment in Chapel Hill. What can I say? We have great taste! 😉

I’m most proud of my new additions to my dresser area, hooks that allow me to legitimately organize all my Stella & Dot jewelry without keeping my dresser top cluttered:


I still need to weed through my makeup to toss even more than I already have. At least I got to break up all my makeup into eyes, face, lips, and tools via my various bags! It’s still cluttered, but at least it’s neatly cluttered. Progress is progress. 🙂

I think the most time-consuming part was reorganizing my closet. In retrospect, I probably should have taken a picture… oh well. Just know that all the clothes that used to be on the floor are now hanging nice and neat in my closet. My shoes are organized, my bags are hung… it’s such a satisfying feeling! You know what else is satisfying? Finally bagging up all the clothes that I’ve shrunk out of:


4 FULL bags of clothes, size 16 and up!! What a waste… but, one that I am happy to have happen. They will be off to Goodwill or Salvation Army the next chance I get. I can’t wait until I drop just a couple more sizes and can REALLY go shopping! I’m really running out of work clothes… even my coworkers are starting to comment that my one pair of black trousers are like, seriously baggy. I don’t want to sport saddle-butt forever!

Anyway, I know that this post might not seem very related to my weight-loss journey, but I think it is way more related than you think. I mean, organizing my life and being happy in my surroundings is just one step closer to being organized with my health and being happy with myself. What do you guys think?

Alright, the lights are doing some serious flickering due to the crazy storm outside, so I’m going to try to bunker down before the power goes out for realsies. You all have something to look forward to (or dread, depending on how you look at it) though — I still have one last vacation post to put up! And it includes the last night on the cruise, and our short time spent in Miami! Why is this something to potentially be aghast by? Well, I told you all I would, and I’m finally going to do it. I’m finally going to post *gulp* swimsuit pics.

Stay tuned. Or avoid. Eeeeeeeeep!

PS – I updated my About Me page. You should check it out if you feel like getting to know the girl behind the blog (and with the shrinking behind! Hyuk hyuk — I crack myself up) a little better! 😀

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