Tag Archives: shopping

Hi and Bye: AM’s current vocabulary

Tomorrow is my 5 year wedding anniversary. I feel like I should have this great post written about how wonderful these 5 years have been, how Jeremy is my best friend, how I didn’t think it was possible to love someone MORE but seeing him become a father was amazing… blah blah blah. But I’m just not that type of writer. Obviously I feel those things and I’ll usually express that I feel that way by farting on him and giggling like a 10 year old. So.

We don’t have any grand plans tomorrow. We’re running a 6k, as a family, on Sunday morning so that didn’t really leave much in terms of staying out late. Jeremy’s parents will be watching Annmarie during the day because we’ve learned that if we don’t put her to bed, she usually wakes up in the middle of the night (I suspect because she wants to make sure we’re there). We didn’t want to deal with a sleepless night so we have a lunch and movie date planned. Hunger Games, whoo hoo!

We are also not even exchanging gifts! We have a big trip planned next month so we’ve decided that the trip will represent our true celebration of our anniversary (and Jeremy’s completion of law school). I’m excited for the trip but also a little sick about it. I’ve never spent a night away from Annmarie. For this trip, I’ll be spending 5 nights away from her. I get a little weepy when I think about it.

Annmarie has started saying a word here or there and it seems that she understands the word. She still babbles a ton and refers to me, Jeremy and many others as “dada” or even “yaya“. She doesn’t say “ball” or “dog” or whatever else people seem to be telling me their tots say at this age.

The words she is consistently using are:

  • Yeah?” – she says this while pointing or motioning to something she wants
  • No” – She says this when you try to hand her something she doesn’t want or to the dogs when she wants them to get away from her.
  • Hi!” – she says this to people when they walk by. I can’t get her to say this on cue but she’ll usually say it to people that walk by our front door, in the grocery store to strangers or wherever else I’m not trying to coax her into saying it. I think by not saying it when I ask, she’s telling me that she’s not my performance monkey.
  • Bye!” – she is starting to get consistent with saying bye to people although it usually sounds more like “die!”.

I managed to capture her saying “Bye” to me this morning:

I think the “hi” and “bye” are complete influences from daycare. There is a little boy that is older than AM who always enthusiastically yells “Hi” and “bye” to me when I pick AM up in the evening.

And lastly – here are just some recent cute pics:

Fun at a birthday party
This was taken at my friend’s son’s first birthday party. I was worried AM was going to terrorize the other children but she was actually quite good. And she was having the time of her life. I am obsessed with this photo (taken by my friend, Geoff).

We went to the mall on Sunday to purchase AM a pair of TOMS. This was probably one of the biggest clothing splurges I’ve made for AM because I am incredibly cheap about baby/toddler clothes. I want her to always look cute but I have a hard time spending lots of money on clothing when she will outgrow them somewhat quickly AND she stains the crap out of them. But I really couldn’t resist these shoes.

I keep trying to get a good picture of the shoes on her feet but it is incredibly difficult to get her to sit still. Just know that these shoes were worth every penny (they were only $30).

Any great plans for the weekend?


Filed under Charm City Kim Breeds

Crap I Want to Buy

I don’t know if this is the impacts of motherhood or aging talking here but I’m finding myself really wanting some stupid things lately.

The first thing that jumps out at me is something that I initially laughed at when I saw it advertised on television.  The whole concept was ridiculous and the way this task was portrayed on television (as though it was incredibly difficult) was even more absurd.

But after watching this commercial a few times and really thinking about… I want it.
Easy Feet

My feet are looking busted lately.  The constant bending over and picking up of a wee baby (that isn’t so light weight anymore) are starting to take a toll on my terrible back (I really feel like I am one sneeze away from a muscle spasm).  And the fact that I have now turned into crazy floor lady (my floors are never clean enough!) – the idea of having this fabulous foot scrubber that allows me to clean my tootsies without having to bend over seems like magic.  And for the low low price of $14.95, I can’t resist.  The next time I’m at Bed, Bath and Beyond - I think I’ll pick one of these up.

That leads me to this next invention.  I didn’t scoff at this initially – in fact, I’ve always thought it was a good idea.  I just wasn’t crazy about the look.
Secret Cami

I don’t like the lace at the top but I do dig the concept.  Sometimes I hate wearing a full on cami under stuff.  And as I reread that sentence, I realize it sounds ridiculous but I have a few dresses where you could see the line of the bottom of the cami and it just looked stupid.  So I started safety pinning a few of my dresses but that also looked stupid.

Now that I’m breastfeeding, I need access to my milk shooters.  And since the feedbags are now filled with something, I’m showing a lot cleavage.  It makes me uncomfortable to showcase my lovely lady lumps like that in the office BUT I need easy access to them for pumping.  Basically what I’m saying is that I need this stupid secret cami.  I just wished it didn’t look so cheap.

And now what I really need someone to invent is an inexpensive yet chic line of nursing clothes.  The nursing stuff offered by most stores is either grossly overpriced (seriously – why are you asking that I pay an extra $50 to pull out my boob?) or hideously designed.  And I don’t understand the nursing wear that has “secret” ways in which you can pull out your breasticle.  I just need an easy wrap, button down or v-neck that is stretchy enough to be pulled down.  No need for the theatrics – and if you look up some nursing gear, you’ll see what I mean.

If I had the means to design some nursing wear, I totally would.  Hey nursing wear designers, contact me.  Let’s work together to make something that isn’t butt ugly but that I won’t have to take a second job to afford.  And something as simple as putting some “pads” in the top to absorb any leaks would be amazing.  That’s not that hard, is it? 

The hubs and I are attending a wedding next month and based on the timeframe of the wedding – I am quite concerned about engorgement.  I know I’ll have to pump between the ceremony and reception but I worry that I won’t make it through the reception.  I told Jeremy that I think about halfway through the reception, I will look AH-MAH-ZING in my dress (and I’ll make him snap 1000 pictures of my beautiful chest) but that I will probably start leaking.  And when the leak gets so bad that you see 2 wet spots concentrated heavily around my nipples – I’m going to spill water all over me and we’ll have to vamoose.  I’ll just tell everyone that Jeremy is clearly SO DRUNK and that we have to go.  And if they don’t believe me, I’ll trip Jeremy and make it seem as though he’s just stumbling.  Brilliant plan, I know.


Filed under Charm City Kim Shops

El Cheapo (How Getting Older and Having a Baby Has Made Me Cheap)

Last week, Jeremy accused me of being super cheap.  I had told him about a super cute baby dress I saw at a consignment sale (it was a little sailor dress) but that I was appalled that it was $8.  It was a used dress.  And a used novelty dress at that.  $8?  I wasn’t buying it on pure principal.  And then Jeremy said I was cheap.

I realize we can afford $8 but in shopping for baby clothes, I can’t get over the prices some places want to charge for stuff that will essentially get stained with poop or that will be outgrown in like a month.  It drives me crazy! 

Today I reminisced about the days where I’d drop $150 for a pair of jeans and not think twice about it.  Now I won’t pay over $30 for some dresses and tops.  My friend said that it probably has to do with the fact that we are now aware of how hard we have to work for our money.  For me – it is just taking into consideration my myriad bills and now I have a baby and can’t even justify spending X amount of dollars on some poorly constructed top (I’m looking at you Old Navy, Banana Republic and H&M… your quality has gone to shit and yet your prices continue to go up.  Not cool.). 

At the mall today, I noticed the Easter Bunny was there.  Even though I found the bunny to be as creepy as the thing from Donnie Darko, I considered taking advantage of getting Annie’s pic snapped with it since there wasn’t a line.

I was trying to find a sign with the pricing listed and the nice employee handed me the sheet with the prices.  And I nearly died.

The cheapest package was $25.99 and it included:

  • 1 – 5×7 Portrait
  • 1 – 4×6 Portrait
  • 2 – 3.5×5 Portraits
  • 4 – Wallet size Portraits

Oh and it also included a “free visit with the bunny”.  How kind of them.  I realize $25.99 isn’t exactly breaking the bank but this was a crap looking bunny on a crap looking set.  And what the hell does one do with all of those pictures?

What made me laugh out loud, though, was the little section that was denoted “Free”.  What did that include?

  • Free smiles
  • Free hugs
  • Free wish taking
  • Free hand holding
  • Free Surprise Gift

Now is it just me or does that sound like a package a pedophile would offer to a child?  What the crap is the free surprise gift?  Yikes!

So maybe I am getting cheap but I am totally okay with that.


Filed under Charm City Kim Rambles, Charm City Kim Shops

Fitness & Fashion Friday

I’m proud to say that I’m still keeping up my commitment to run 3 times a week (along with P90x 3 times a week).  Due to doctor’s appointments, Jeremy’s class schedule and incliment weather – I ran the following:

- Saturday:  Because Jeremy didn’t have class that day and the weather forecast was calling for a wintery mix on Sunday, I went for a run before my hectic shower hosting duties.  I ran along the Inner Harbor again (one of my favorite paths).  Even though I had the Garmin with me, I decided not to obsess over the mileage throughout the run.  Instead I decided I’d run through 10 songs on my iPod.  When I got to the 10th song, I checked the Garmin and was shocked that I ran a 6k with an average pace 10 seconds faster than my last run (but it is still quite slow).

- Tuesday:  I had a dentist appointment because I had swallowed my temporary crown (I swallowed it at the baby shower I hosted over the weekend!).  Since the dentist is located by my parents’ house, I thought I’d take advantage of having my mom watch Annmarie and try to squeeze in a run.  I prefer to run outdoors over a treadmill so I ran around my parents’ (and my childhood) neighborhood.  I didn’t time eating and nursing well so when I ran, I felt pretty drained.  I was only able to run 2.5 miles (with rolling hills!) and walked an additional mile.  I prayed that I wouldn’t see anyone I grew up with while doing so.  I grew up in an area where most of the people still live around that way (and going to a local bar IN A SHOPPING MALL will guarantee a mini high school reunion).  I just didn’t want to appear as though I am (1) unemployed (2) still live with my parents and (3) that I am grossly out of shape.  A part of my running path also took me by an ex-boyfriend’s parents’ house and I hoped to not see his mom (although I doubt she’d even recognize me.  Its been 10 years.  Still – you never know… and I didn’t want to appear like a stalker).

Thursday – crap weather forced me indoors.  I ran on a 5k on a treadmill.

I’m trying not to focus on my weight.  I’ve been holding pretty steady at a number (that I’d like to see 5 lbs lower).  But since I’m back in my pre-pregnancy pants, I’m thinking it might be water weight or something related to breastfeeding.  Jeremy noted this morning that my belly has gone down over the last 2 weeks.

I’m still eating like garbage but not nearly as bad as I was the first month of motherhood.  I’ve been thinking about going back to my mostly vegan diet.  Pregnancy brought on an intense craving for cheese and I’d like to cut that out again. 

Now onto the fashion piece.  I’m a shop-a-holic.  I love clothes.  While I’m trying to be more mindful of spending money on frivolous things (especially since I’m now entering the upaid portion of my maternity leave) but I can’t help it.  I subscribe to all of these shopping sites.  I subscribe to fashion magazines.  It is like cute spring clothes are calling my name.

However, the worst part?  I now look to see if the shirts or dresses can accommodate nursing!  UGH.  But most of the super cute stuff doesn’t really accommodate nursing.  What to do?  (Jeremy is probably thankful that I’m not buying stuff if I don’t think it’ll work well with nursing).  I really like the whole nautical spring trend right now (cute striped tees, boat shoes, etc.).  I also love maxi dresses but worry that they’ll look a bit maternity-ish on me.

What trends are you loving right now?


Filed under Charm City Kim Runs, Charm City Kim Shops

Building Up My Wardrobe

Now that I’m trying to refocus my professional attire (aka “Corporate Kim”) — I’m need a plan.  While I’d love to go on an all out shopping spree – I’m pretty sure Jeremy would have a heart attack.

Obviously I thought of Tim Gunn (my imaginary best friend).

A photo of Tim Gunn

I own his book, Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style (Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style) and while I recall it being a light, interesting read - I didn’t really want to thumb through the book again.

Then I remembered his short lived Bravo show Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style.  In his show – he talked about the 10 essential wardrobe items every woman should own.  A 10-item checklist?  I can start with that:

  • Basic Black Dress
  • Trench Coat
  • Classic Dress Pants
  • Skirt
  • Blazer
  • Classic White Shirt
  • Day Dress
  • Cashmere Sweater
  • Jeans
  • Sweatsuit Alternative
  • Bonus: One Indulgent Trendy Item Under $20

I own the majority of these items except for a Cashmere sweater (that I’ll never buy because I’m a vegetarian) and a trench coat.

I think, however, that I need to step up the classic dress pants, classic white shirt and a blazer.  I have blazers but I think I need a good go to blazer that works with the majority of my items.

As for classic white shirt – I need a good, crisp white button up shirt.  Preferably one that is stain resistant and doesn’t require ironing.  :-)

Oprah featured a white, non-iron shirt, last year that I’ve been meaning to get.  Its a bit pricey but it seems well worth it if I don’t have to iron.  I have difficulty with getting button up dress shirts to appear crisp.  (I am the world’s worst ironer)

Brooks Brother Non-Iron Tailored Fit Dress Shirt

I’m going to invest in a nice shoe polish/cleaner to “save” some of my current shoes but am also hunting for nude pumps. 

Based on some of your suggestions – I’ll look into Target and Kohl’s for a trenchcoat.

I am well on my way!


Filed under Charm City Kim Shops

Like I Needed Another Reason to Shop

Last week I did my first adult thing… I went to a professional conference ALONE.  If any of you follow my tweets, you’ll know that I was incredibly nervous about venturing out alone and schmoozing.

Well, I survived.  And as dumb as it sounds – I feel more grown up.

I took a workshop titled, “The Power to Persuade and Influence without Authority”.  While it sounds a wee bit corny – I actually learned a lot.

One of the things that stood out to me was the idea of conveying a perceived authority.  The quickest way to do this is by your clothing since a first impression is important.  This includes:

  • Name brands – people look at logos!  And apparently the fancier and well-known a label/logo, the more important you appear. 
  • Jewelry
  • Neat appearance – ironed, lint-free, well-coordinated clothing
  • Shoes – polished and professional

This idea isn’t exactly ground-breaking.  We judge people all the time!  You don’t?  Okay, I do! 

I work in an environment that is “business casual”.  And some people take the casual part very seriously.  I have let my work clothes go and have summed up my look as “soccer mom”.  I wear a lot of khakis and flats. 

However, this course just reiterated that old adage that you should dress for the job you want and not necessarily the one you have.  I think if I want to be taken more seriously or at least have a chance to climb up the corporate ladder — I need to step up my game.

I need a serious overhaul of shoes.  I’m a total klutz and a lot of my shoes are really scuffed.  However, I don’t wear leather.  Can I tell you how hard it is to find cute, professional shoes that aren’t made of leather?  The one I’m struggling the most with is a pair of nude leather pumps! 

I want these… in a NON-leather material:

Kate Spade Karolina Shoe

I feel like I’m chasing after a damn unicorn or something.  I found some camel/nude color kitten heels at Target.  They looked nice online but cheap and flimsy in person.  Ugh.

I also decided to use one of my more structured bags to carry my work crap in (planner, folders, etc.).  It is an old Coach tote (before I decided to nix leather) and since brands carry a lot of weight – I figured it couldn’t hurt.  Despite the Coach bag being a little stained and scuffed, I am always peppered with compliments anytime I break it out.  This probably just reiterates the fact that people notice brands.

I made a shift today into a more professional outfit and was instantly asked if I was interviewing for a new position today.   Good sign?

We’ll see.  And now I have another reason to shop!  I’m looking for new shoes and a nice trenchcoat.  Any suggestions of where I can find a not crazy expensive but still nice trench?


Filed under Charm City Kim Shops

Shopping Addiction

Hello, my name is Kim and I am a shopaholic.

Seriously – money burns a hole in my pocket.  I’ve noticed that I’ve had some extra funds as of late (mostly because I haven’t gone shopping in awhile… amazing what NOT shopping does for my checking account) and it has made me antsy. 

I think that if it weren’t for my husband, I’d still be living paycheck to paycheck, under a mountain of credit card debt (and worse – STORE credit cards) and with no savings.  That is pretty much how I left college and I’m not even including my student loan debt!

I think when I graduated from undergrad, I had racked up close to $11k in CREDIT CARD debt with nothing to show for it!  I had a ton of junk and was about 20 lbs overweight.  I ended up moving back in with my parents (not a high point in my life) and managed to pay off my debt.

But still – money burns a hole in my pocket.

Its probably a really bad thing that I’m signed up for e-mail notifications from Shop It To Me, Gilt Group, Rue La La as well as all of the various online shops I’ve frequented.

So anywho – I bought a bunch of stuff from the Gap yesterday because I received an e-mail notice stating that their sale merchandise was an extra 20% off.

Seriously, I have a problem.

I didn’t even get anything super fabulous — just a bunch of basics like:

White silk-blend V-neck

Rugby-striped shawl collar sweater

The fatigue skirt

… not to mention many more.  (Okay – not THAT much more, breathe easy Jeremy)

And like an addict – I feel better and yet guilty all at the same time.

(oh – and I’m totally going shopping this weekend.  Yikes!)


Filed under Charm City Kim Shops

Christmas in February?

One of the things I love most about online shopping is that when you receive a package, its like receiving a Christmas present.  I get very excited over this… and I think having snow madness just escalated my excitement. 

Living in Baltimore city, I don’t have a lot of packages sent to my house.  First – if UPS requires a signature, I’m never home to get the damn package.  Anyone else have this problem?  Second – if a package is left on my doorstep, I’m always afraid someone will swipe it.

So – as much as I don’t like to, I get packages sent to my parents’ house.  I don’t like it because my mom is nosy!  And if too many packages come, my mom thinks I have a shopping problem (and I really don’t).

Anywho – recently I purchased a few new goodies and was finally able to get the packages (since some snow has melted).  Yippeee!

BB Dakota Glen Plaid dress:

I originally saw this dress through Gilt.  I wasn’t sure of what size to order.   So I looked up their return policy and shipping costs.  After all was said and done, the cost of the dress would have been around $40.  Not too shabby.

Thanks to the power of Google, I looked up this dress to see if I could score it anywhere cheaper.   And I did!  South Moon Under had this dress for the same sale price.  However, their return policy allowed for in store returns (and there is one down the street) AND Retail Me Not had a coupon code.  Blah blah blah… I got the dress for $30 and I felt pretty happy about it.  I took a guess about the size and was pretty stoked that I was right about that too.  Yay – new dress!

I received an e-mail from Piperlime about a sale on boots.   I wasn’t really on the market for boots (but always kind of look for non-leather gray boots).  Wouldn’t you know – they had a pair of non-leather gray boots for sale ($40!):

Okay – so it wasn’t much but it helped get me through Snowzilla with a smile.  I like getting presents!

I also just realized that receiving all of these sale e-mails is probably a very dangerous thing…


Filed under Charm City Kim Shops

A Baltimore-centric Weekend

Despite the fact that I am now in the final stages of grad school and what I have left to do can only be equated to HELL… I made some plans over the weekend to check out various events around Baltimore.  And dammit, I am not changing my plans.

I guess I could argue that most of my weekends are Baltimore-centric since I live in Baltimore and generally stay in the city but I don’t always check out events.

Last night, I checked out the pop up shops in Harbor East.  There was some sort of party last night with champagne (champagne that was never offered to me and my pal… I was a little miffed).  I had read about these shops through some tweets and you really don’t have to twist my arm to get me shopping.

I picked up a pair super cute earrings from the DoubleDutch boutique pop up shop (their store is located in Hampden) :

My crap camera phone doesn’t do them justice.  I think these were made by an etsy seller and sadly I don’t remember which one (or I’d check our their shop online). 

After picking these up, I headed over to the Shine Collective shop (their main store is also in Hampden) and grabbed this Baltimore t-shirt:

Even though that was a Thursday night, I’ll still count it as my Baltimore-centric weekend extravaganza.

Tonight I’m meeting up with a bunch of girlfriends for dinner.  We’re eating at Sabatinos in Little Italy.  I haven’t eaten here in YEARS and don’t remember much about it.  But I know they accommodate large parties and it’ll be nice to get together with the girls.  I’ve been a social hermit for awhile.

Tomorrow morning, I’m going to check out the American Visionary Art Museum‘s Sock Monkey Saturday event:
Saturday • December 12 • 11AM–3PM • FREE:  SOCK MONKEY SATURDAY!

Don’t let the holidays drive you BANANAS! Relax by making your very own Sock Monkey. A great last-minute gift! And something just fun to do! FREE, but you must bring 2 pairs of (clean) socks to get in! Instructions, stuffing, sewing needles, thread, visionary baubles, and camaraderie provided.

I love sock monkeys.

Afterwards, I’m hoping I’ll have time to check out MICA‘s Art Market event.  Tomorrow is the last day for it and it closes at 6pm.  I’d really love to pick up some great artwork from local Baltimore artists.

When that’s done, I’ll be working on school stuff (hopefully).  I’m relying on my teammate to upload data online so that I can access it for my project.  I hate relying on people for this but I don’t have time to go by school today. 

Sunday, I’m checking out the Urban Chic sample sale.  They have a store in Harbor East.  My friend owns the store, one of my good friends is a buyer for the store and I basically wait for this sample sale every year.  Technically this sample sale is NOT in Baltimore but they have a store in Baltimore so I’m still counting it.

Afterwards, I’ll be studying for one of my final exams. 

So if you’re in Baltimore, you should check out some of these events.  And if you’re not – what are you doing this weekend?


Filed under Charm City Kim Plays, Charm City Kim Shops

Still Here

Despite the long hiatus from blogging, I wasn’t really doing anything super fabulous that would have kept me away from the computer.  In fact, I spent a good chunk of my holiday weekend watching Season 1 of The Wire.  That show is addicting!  I had several random dreams all involving The Wire last night.  And I now find myself looking at Baltimore and its residents in a new light.

And can we talk about how ridiculously attractive Idris Elba is?  And did you know he’s British?  I died when I heard that.  Now I need to hear an interview of his so that I can die again.  Oh my, the hotness.  Seriously – if he tried to mug me in Baltimore, I’m pretty sure I’d just give him everything and then a long awkward hug. 

Moving on…

I took a bunch of pics of my Thanksgiving dinner so I’ll save that for another post (maybe tomorrow).  Thanksgiving was spent with just Jeremy and it was awesome.  No travel.  No stress. 

I had a very disappointing Black Friday shopping day so there isn’t much to report on that front.  The company was fun (hey Theresa!) but overall, the sales were lackluster.  I hesitated on a pair of boots in the store and then looked them up online (for a slightly better deal).  But hesitated to buy them last night online.  I went to buy them this morning and they are sold out of my size on the site with the REALLY good deal!  That’ll teach me to wait on purchasing super cute grey boots. 

I tried to run yesterday after taking a week off and my knee starting to hurt after 1 mile and now it STILL hurts.  UGH.

I have restarted p90x as of this morning.  Jeremy wanted to do the program again and convinced me to do it with him by telling me just how much he enjoyed working out with me in the morning.  I’m a sucker for a compliment.  I’ll try not to blog about the program again since I think it bores the majority of readers!  Just know that I’m not following the diet closely because hello?  It’s the frickin’ holidays and I want to drink champagne (I’m currently obsessed with champagne and sparkling wines).

Lastly – I have my ears pierced twice.  In the second hole, I have a pair of 1/4 karat diamond earrings.  I hardly ever mess with these earrings but noticed that one of them was looking extra crusty yesterday.  So I thought it was a good idea to take the earrings out, clean them thoroughly and perhaps give my ears a break from wearing earrings.  I totally forgot that I had replaced the backing (the original ones screwed onto the post) with a cheapo plastic backing from one of my other earrings.  And now I can’t get the son of a bitch off. 

Jeremy pulled out pliers and I sort freaked out.  I envisioned him ripping the entire earring out of my ear.  But today I’m really freaking out.  I can’t get the backing off!  I broke 2 fingernails trying to pull the backing off and it didn’t budge.  Someone suggested I try baby oil or vaseline.  Any ideas?  I don’t remember the plastic piece being that difficult to put on the earring post.  But seriously – I am a dumbass.  I should have just gone to the store for the appropriate backing. 

So there you have it.  I’m alive, super boring and freaking out over my ear.

How was everyone’s holiday weekend?


Filed under Charm City Kim Rambles, Charm City Kim Shops