A Hate Letter to Women’s Clothing (And Boobs)

While I was originally going to do an “August Favorites” post today because I was devoid of original thought, I decided to procrastinate blogging by listening to Grace Helbig’s new Podcast “Not Too Deep” and surf Pinterest.

If you are not familiar with Grace, she is a Youtuber who has a book coming out next month, as well as her own TV show coming sometime this year.  Her podcast is basically a free-for-all fun interview with other Youtubers (I think just Youtubers, anyway) and it is highly entertaining.  I just listened to her interview with Tyler Oakley, where they discussed sh*tting your pants and drag queens.  If you are the podcast sort of person, I definitely recommend it.

Sidenote: That paragraph ^^ was originally like 3xs as long as it is now, where I listed many other things about Grace Helbig’s career and some of her other projects, but I cut it down so I didn’t seem like a psychopath.  I just really love Youtube, okay?  There’s nothing wrong with that.  I’m fine.  Everything is normal.

Back to the main point: I was listening to her podcast and surfing the women’s clothing section of Pinterest.  Anyone who knows me also knows that I am not a particularly fashionable person. I appreciate good fashion, enjoy looking at good fashion, but hate dressing myself in “trendy” clothes.

I was cursed blessed with curves.  I’ve got dat ass and dem tig ol’ bitties, which makes shopping very difficult sometimes.  Therefore, I just stick to what I know: t-shirts, running shorts and sneakers, or leggings, over-sized v-necks, baggy sweaters, scarves and boots.  There is very little in-between.

Which, even as I am writing that, sounds way more fashionable than it really is.  If I’m being really honest, my style can be summed up in a few simple words:

“Anything I can hide a sports bra under.”

Bras are the kryptonite of my existence.  In my 22 years on this earth, I have yet to find a bra that I enjoy wearing, or that I enjoy the way it looks under my clothes.  Did I mention I also worked at Victoria’s Secret for one summer?  I literally sold bras for a living, and still could not find one that felt comfortable and looked good.  It is impossible.

Therefore, I am the queen of sports bras.  I will try on twenty different outfits if it means finding one that will not show my sports bra.  Which, I think, is why I love scarves so much.  It’s incredibly easy to cover up the faded pink strap of my favorite sports bra poking it’s way through a wide-necked top if you have a big, fluffy infinity scarf around your shoulders.

Which brings me back to Pinterest.  Pinterest is my window-shopping torture.  But I love it. I am forever looking at outfits on Pinterest, and trying to figure out how they would work for me.  Usually, they won’t.

Sheer white top? Nope, you’ll be able to see my bra– and, in this case, talking about a Real Bra– right through it.  Low-backed tank top?  Nope, bra band will hang out.  Boho-style sundress with halter straps? LOL, where is her bra?

It even extends past that. A typical Pinterst outfit: how about those totally trendy ripped jeans rolled up above the ankle, showing off those super cute strappy heels and the loose, flowing top?

A Hate Letter To Women's Clothing (And Boobs) | Candidly Kelsey

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(Also, no disrespect to this girl. She’s gorgeous and her outfit is super cute. Using it merely to make my point. Keep doin’ your thang, lady.)

On my body the jeans will be rolled so far to accommodate my short legs that the rips will lose their appeal, the heels will look like flippers in comparison the curve from my hips and booty down to my skinny calves.  And that flowing, loose top will no longer be flowy but instead will add an extra 10 lbs onto my frame while the top billows out to accommodate my chest.  Meanwhile, the straps of my bra will either be hanging out on the bare space on my shoulders, or my boobs will hang down to where boobs should never be if I even attempt to go strapless. No dice. Next outfit, please.

F*ck you, Pinterest*.  F*ck you and your impossible standards of beauty and breast wrangling, and your total disregard to my bra issues.

Pass me a scarf.

*I guess “Pinterest” could also replace “Societal Standards” but that was not my original intention.  I just really hate my boobs.

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UnCork the Artist: Wine and Painting

Tonight I paid a lot of money to clumsily recreate a very stressful painting while drinking a glass of too-warm white wine that we brought to the studio ourselves.

Thankfully, however, this was after I spent a lot of money to fix the whole “I don’t have a license” thing, and the “paying for the last semester of college” thing, and then spent the afternoon of watching corporate restaurant training videos.  So obviously I was feeling at my creative best and totally ready to tackle a Van Gogh.

Even though we booked like two weeks ago, our group was split when we arrived– but whatever, I’m obviously not bitter or anything.  Somehow, my Mother and a family friend ended up at the very front of the room, the rest of our group ended up at the “emergency overflow table” by the door.  AKA, we couldn’t see the instructor, and had to rely on our own artistic intuition (LOL) and a fair amount of guessing to mimic the real picture.

So it began with a little bit of this:

UnCork the Artist | Candidly Kelsey

(Mosaic-glass (or weird blue bricks?)-like tentacles on an uneven light blue background, with special appearance by an egg yolk?)

Then progressed to a little bit of this,

UnCork the Artist | Candidly Kelsey

(At this point, I named it “Two Sea-Horsies with a Lemon”)

And then progressed even more to some of this,

UnCork the Artist | Candidly Kelsey

(Sea horsies are coming along, but are now in a mess of blue and black jellybeans?)

And then we on “Team Threshold/Team Doorway/Team Parking Lot/Team Can’t See What the F*ck Is Going On” chose to ignore the instruction of the artist who led us, and eventually it ended up like this:

 UnCork the Artist | Candidly Kelsey

(If you hold it farther away, it looks better.  It’s abstract.  Perspective.  Squinting. Whatever.)

And if you look super closely on mine (to the bottom right, next to one of the houses/purple blobs), you can see the tiny man with his tiny fire torch in his tiny hand coming to burn down the giant Spongebob’s-Pinapple-House-esque bush.

UnCork the Artist | Candidly Kelsey

Overall, not totally thrilled with this experience.  The wine and canvas equivalent in Bloomington that I went to in March was way better in terms of instruction and studio atmosphere, and I think it really affected the actual outcome of the picture.

Because clearly I am an impeccable artist and it would have been perfect otherwise. Obviously.

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5 Quick (and dirty) Health Tips

Quick and Easy Tips to Start Feeling Healthier NOW | Candidly Kelsey

 

My life dream is to work with people on improving their health.  I want to be the nice Jillian Michaels (with a slightly bigger ass).  But as I am still without the certifications after my name that says I am qualified to instruct others on improving their well-being, I thought I’d offer up my opinion on some basic health matters by sharing 5 Quick (and dirty) Health Tips:

1. Drink more Water

I am actually cringing even as I write this, because this is the most overused health tip in the history of Yahoo! Health articles, but it still holds true.

SCIENCE LESSON: Your body uses water in EVERYTHING. Water is a major part of your muscles, your blood, your organs, and your cells (to name a few things).  When you become dehydrated, that means your body is missing the water to keep things running the way they should.  This could result in low blood pressure (less water = less water in your blood = lowering the amount of blood you have because water isn’t diluting it like normal = feeling sluggish because not enough blood is pumping and delivering things like oxygen to your organs), muscles that aren’t working to their potential, dizziness, fainting, headache, etc.  All of this adds up to us not feeling the best that we could be, making this change simple: Drink more water.

There are plenty of simple ways to add more water to your daily life:

  • Get a cute water bottle.  Carry it with you 24/7, and drink often.  Or, if you want to stay super dedicated, you can even write on the water bottle body-builder style to time your water intake throughout the day.
  • Set phone alarms.  This one is my personal favorite.  I have an alarm that goes off at 1pm, 4pm, and 7pm.  I am for 100oz of water per day, and whenever those alarms go off, I check my progress.  If I’m slacking, I drink a few glasses.  Eventually, it becomes a habit.
  • Drink a glass of water before every meal.
  • Stop drinking soda/juice/gatorade during the day, and replace it with water.  Bing, bang, boom.  Less calories, less sugar, more water.  It’s a win-win situation.

For your entertainment, see: My cute water bottle, a hand-painted 52 oz Bubba Keg (originally made for festive alcoholic consumption, is now my favorite water bottle).

Quick and Easy Tips to Start Feeling Healthier NOW | Candidly Kelsey

2. Increase Your Fruits and Veggies Intake

Notice I said “increase” not “get a totally-unrealistic-amount of servings per day”.

If you are a person who eats very little, or literally no whole fruits or vegetables, then trying to suddenly start eating 3 servings of each per day will be really hard.  This is where people tend to get scared and shy away from making healthy choices.  You don’t have to cut out all of your favorite foods to improve your health. You can benefit from even adding a little bit at a time.  Start off by eating a little bit of fruit with your breakfast in the morning, or have carrots and hummus as a snack (try any garlic hummus that’s on sale next time you’re at the store– trust me), or add a vegetable side to your lunch or dinner.  Start small and work your way up to more.  The most important thing to remember is to not overwhelm yourself or you’ll quit before you even start.

3. Eat Breakfast

Eating breakfast starts off your whole day.  You have literally gone from NOT eating for the 8+ hours you were asleep, and maybe a few hours before that.  A good rule of thumb is to start off the day with a breakfast containing a good amount of fiber and protein.  Though sugary cereals and bagels are delicious (real talk, have you ever had an asiago bagel? YUMMMMM.), replace the refined carbohydrates with protein and fiber to stay fuller for longer.

Some ideas include:

  • Breakfast burritos in whole-grain tortillas, include eggs, peppers, onions, salsa, a meat like sausage or bacon (organic or grassfed if you can manage it!), and a little sprinkle of cheese.  Sorry, am I drooling?
  • Greek yogurt with berries, a sprinkle of chia seeds or flax meal, and a dash of cinnamon
  • Whole grain or ezekial toast (made with sprouted wheat) with almond butter, banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon
  • Green smoothie: small spoonful of Greek yogurt, toss in some spinach or kale (or other dark leafy greens of choice), half of a banana for sweetness or a tiny spoonful of peanut butter or almond butter for taste, and a few ice-cubes.

For more ideas, do a little Googling! There are TONS of ideas out there for healthy meals!

4. Cook Your Own Food

It’s easy to eat healthy if you make your own food!  Not only is it more economical to buy your own food and prepare it at home, but YOU get to decide what goes in it!  Control the sodium, the excess fats, and the flavors by preparing it all.

Restaurant Burger: Questionable beef cooked on a grill greased with butter, slapped refined, white flour bun that was probably also coated in butter, processed cheese-like product, sauce of questionable origin, and fried, probably recently frozen, french fries.

– OR –

At-home burger: Turkey burger patty (or organic beef!) on a skillet greased with a healthy oil (coconut oil?), served on a whole grain bun or in a lettuce wrap, topped with fresh veggies of choice, cheese from antibiotic-free cows, and home-made sweet potato (or regular potato) fries cooked in the oven.

Which would you rather have?  The internet is FULL of recipes that are so much easier than they look, and will make you feel like the winner of Chopped.  If I had a dollar for every time I have announced my new title as “Top Chef” just from successfully completing a recipe, I’d have more than enough to remain unemployed.

5. De-Stress

I can’t stress this one enough (ba-dum, tissssh!).  Having constant stress wreaks havoc on your body in many ways.  The hormones released when your body undergoes a “fight or flight” situation, AKA you feel stressed, are not meant to be in the body for an extended period of time, and can drastically change the way the body normally behaves.

Chronic stress has been shown to do a number of things to the body, including:

  • cause weight gain that is unrelated to lifestyle changes (no diet or exercise changes)
  • headaches
  • insomnia
  • hormonal changes that can cause anything from mental and emotional problems, to skin problems (rashes, hives, acne, premature aging, etc), to reproductive problems
  • significantly increase the risk of heart attack or stroke
  • significantly increase the risk of heart disease, or coronary artery disease
  • stomach pain, including the development of chronic gastric issues
  • muscle aches

 

I could go on forever about the negative health implications of living chronically stressed.  In this age, we tend to praise those who are super busy and super successful, but not think of how that lifestyle could be affecting our health.  It’s important to take time to unwind and relax at the end of the day, or work actively to make sure you don’t become incredibly overwhelmed in your life.

Another Google search can turn up valuable tips and tricks to reduce the amount of stress in your life, but here are some of my favorites:

  • To-Do lists: Daily, weekly, monthly and even yearly to-do lists can break up the stress that having a very hectic schedule can provide.  Turn big projects into less stressful, easier to approach chunks, or pace yourself as you prepare for a big upcoming event by turning it into manageable tasks.
  • Schedule: Get a planner and write things down.  Seeing everything in front of you can help you prepare so you don’t feel suddenly overwhelmed by life.
  • Learn to say “no”! If you’re already super overwhelmed, don’t take on more if you can avoid it.  Saying no doesn’t make you rude, or unhelpful.
  • Take up a relaxing hobby.  Reading, writing, watching TV, knitting, painting, exercising, gardening, crafting, reading blogs, cleaning, cooking, baking, puzzles, video games, decorating… anything can be a way to relax if you truly enjoy it.
  • Exercising and eating healthy.  NEVER underestimate the stress-relieving power of a good workout, or the energy boost and clear mind that a healthy diet can have.  Find something you enjoy, such as long walks, running, weight lifting, taking a dance class, a spin class, kick-boxing, or doing a workout DVD.  Find something fun and active and you’ll be amazed at how clear-headed you feel afterwards.

A little bit of stress is okay, but nobody should feel continuously overwhelmed, worried or anxious. Work on controlling your stress, or relieving it to add years back to your life. Nerd Alert: If you are interested in this phenomenon (and also in the field of health disparities), pick up the book “The Status Syndrome” by Michael Marmot, as he discusses this in length in relation to those who are less fortunate and how being in a stressful life situation (less education, less job security, less income, living in a violent area, etc) causes major health problems due to the chronic stress an unfavorable life can cause.  It’s a really eye-opening book.

And remember: if you’re ever feeling completely overcome, or worried that you are experiencing anxiety or depression that feels completely overcoming or is affecting your daily life, the bravest thing you can do is reach out for help. Talk to your doctor, a friend, a family member, or anyone you’re comfortable with.

 

Hope these helped.  Any questions? Feel free to contact me via the “About” page!

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