Picking back up -- 

Hi friends! Last time I checked in, I dropped a major bomb but promised I was taking care of myself, and I’m happy to report that I am doing just that! I’m still very much on my pilates grind, aspiring to Hot Connecticut Mom status. I recently got my Color Camp order which have made me feel like a million billion bucks (more on these later). I turned 27 a few weeks ago and had a blast celebrating with my friend Holly at Tokyo Record Bar (expectations: surpassed), and since then I’ve been embracing the slower pace of life in CT, going on lots of walks and drives jamming out to my new fall playlist. 

And now here we are, IN SEPTEMBER! Wowza! 

This month, the things that are top of mind for me are authentic self expression (I’ve been buying a lot of poppy colored things for fall, like this dress) and meaningful connection. It’s been one hell of a summer, and I’m ready to have some fun and be around other people. I’m heading into the city this weekend and I’m VERY MUCH looking forward to doing all the things I used to love, number one being rollerblading on the West Side Highway. 

I also want to acknowledge the seemingly never-ending firestorm of news over the past few weeks. What’s happening in Afghanistan, the hurricaine in Louisiana, Texas’s abortion ban … and if you’re feeling overwhelmed, helpless, frustrated, stuck: girl, same. I feel you. Linking some resources on organizations you can support right now: 

Always here to talk. You can respond directly to this email and it will go to my inbox -- I’m here for you <3 

I’m happy to report that I’ve found an album to take the place of Justin Bieber’s Changes on repeat in my Spotify queue: Solar Power. 

From a technical standpoint the album has been met with mixed reviews: 

People think it’s nice but kinda missed the mark: 

Solar Power, a self-aware, scaled-back album that asks you to “breathe out and tune in,” like a strange little paperbound spiritual text at a hippie bookshop … But most of Solar Power doesn’t solicit strong emotion in either direction. Shouldn’t an album about [grief] by one of the best pop songwriters of her generation make you feel something? - Anna Gaca, Pitchfork 

Lots of comparison to Lana, Taylor, and Billie: 

If Solar Power feels antipodean, it does exist in tension with New York and Los Angeles. Laurel Canyon feels, spiritually, not far away from Lorde’s idyll, and the New Zealander’s most recent single, Stoned at the Nail Salon, has a serious melodic affinity with Hope Is a Dangerous Thing for a Woman Like Me to Have – But I Have It by Lana Del Rey, another student of the canyon canon. The link is producer Jack Antonoff, who should have policed such a tune-bleed between clients. - Kitty Empire, The Guardian 

And that it could have dug deeper 

What keeps much of “Solar Power” from really taking root, though, is that most of these songs are written from the perspective of an enviably serene person snugly on the other side of that struggle. - Lindsay Zoladz, NYT 

But personally, I’m here for it. I think it’s magical and it’s been the perfect backdrop to the last few weeks of summer. For me, it just deeply resonates right now though as I process so much Big Change in my own life and I love her take on growing up and finding hope. 

I’ve also just developed a lot of respect for her as an artist after listening to a bunch of interviews about her creative process with this album. It’s clear that she’s showing up as her most authentic self, on her terms— her “hibernations” are just another great example of someone taking time away from “it all” to prioritize herself and do what she WANTS (e.g. going to antartica, writing a zine, etc.). Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka have shown us what it looks like to break the traditional mold in a sports environment, and I love that Lorde is giving us another peek behind the curtain of someone who hit superfame at a young age and what it looks like to actually deal with that. 

So anyway, there was your unsolicited album review. Kacey Musgraves is up next … I am SO excited for Star Crossed to fully drop - September 10th cannot come soon enough!!! 

Color Camp Review: 

Is it just me, or is everyone on Instagram talking about Color Camp press-ons? A few weeks ago I was #influenced by Bekah Martinez and ordered a few sets — and my gals, these are THE REAL DEAL. Will they break my tumultuous relationship with gel manicures? Jury’s still out, but I am really into these. 

Color Camp sends you an at-home try on kit to size the set specifically to your fingers, and each set is painted to order, so getting your first set does take a few weeks. You glue them on with this little kit that they give you, and can easily remove them at anytime by soaking your hands in soapy water, which is one hell of a lot better than chipping a gel mani off DIY style. I found that mine lasted really well, and one or two fell off throughout the week but I just glued them back on. 

You can also reuse the set, so they’re not just a one-time thing! I’m not legit enough to have a discount code (YET) but, if you’ve also been contemplating making the splurge: I’ve done the recon and can vouch for them. Highly recommend! 

And lastly, some random internet finds: 

  • YES, Old Navy
  • In the spirit of doing things for the hell of it, I just ordered a bunch of tattoos from Tattly, and I’m excited to try them out. 
  • Cup of Jo recently recommended this documentary which looks captivating.  
  • I’m going to be in NYC this week and can’t wait to squeeze in a class at my favorite place on earth
  • Some TV recommendations: Starstruck, Nine Perfect Strangers, and 100 Foot Wave. 

I’m heading to the Women’s Surf Film Festival at Rockaway Beach next weekend -- I can’t wait! 

(Pictured above: Bogs, KP, and Sam at KP's wedding in July. Sam is our beloved Brightside editor/designer/jack of all trades, who has graced us with a long awaited HOT TAKE today) ... 

Bogs and I have been friends for a minute now and over the years I've watched her and our friend KP make countless references to the Twilight Saga, a teen guilty pleasure of which i never indulged in even a little. I don't live under a rock, so I obviously know what the movies are about, but until this summer I never watched a single film, even partially. We decided the past few Tuesdays would be #TwilightTuesday, and together the 3 of us and recorded our commentary in google docs while watching. 

Some notable live commentary from our viewing: 

So becoming a vampire takes away your soul? No problem she already has no personality why does she need a soul 

Time to leave we look too young ??? Why didn't Carlisle just go into plastics no one would question the youthful appearance of a plastic surgeons family 

So this movies theme is horny 4 hallucinations

Cannot believe a literal war is about to be waged over the most boring girl on Earth 

How did getting bit give her eyelash extensions ???? but not a manicure ………

And the most important question across all 5 films: 

Guys for real what is wrong with Jasper why does he look like that

(let us know if you want to see full color coded commentary. We have a full length doc from each film.) 

I can’t stop thinking about these adorable pillows, but trying to hold out for a cheaper dupe at HomeGoods. 

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