Mari's Notebook

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Monday, July 30, 2012

Favorite Combination: Shorts and Sweaters

The recent rain and range of temperatures around here have made it a bit chilly and gray in the morning. Even though it's summer I am waking up cold! My go-to combination these past few days have been shorts and a comfy sweater--perfect for keeping warm in the morning and staying cool as it gets warmer throughout the day. I wear a tank underneath just in case the sweater gets to be too much.

Here are some of my current craves:

Shorts and Sweaters

Shorts and Sweaters by marisoldahl

Outfit #1: I spotted this sweater at American Eagle and can't get it out of my head. I think I'll wait until it goes on sale. Sweater, American Eagle $39.95. Shorts, Target, $13.49.

Outfit #2: Sweater, H&M, $24.95. Shorts, Target.

Outfit #3: Sweater, H&M, $34.95. Shorts, Pacsun, $34.99.

Outfit #4: Sweater, Abercrombie & Fitch, $78. Shorts, AĆ©ropostale, $18.

Outfit #5: I can't not include this owl sweater, Target, $22.99. Shorts, American Eagle, $39.95.

I'm talking...just about everything started this awesome blog hop. Check it out, and add yours! 

Happy Monday! What are your summer style faves when it's unseasonably cold?

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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Happiness is...

found here

1. watching favorite childhood movies. 
2. walking in a new pair of shoes. 
3. flipping through old magazines. 
4. looking at clownfish. 
5. driving with the windows down. 
6. buying birthday gifts. 
7. telling a joke. 
8. eating dessert first. 
9. finally finding that one thing you lost.
10. Saturday morning sleep-ins. 

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Five Things

...that I really really like right now.

1. Dunkin' Donuts hot chocolate. It's super chocolatey. And also nice and warm. And has been perfect these past few days where mornings and evenings can get a bit chilly with the rain. 

2. Animal coffee mugs from Pier1 Imports. Like this owl one, and the cow one, and this elephant teapot...

3. The fact that I can wake up at 6:30 in the morning to get to work and actually function. This wouldn't happen in a million years at school, so I'm not quite sure why I'm able to do this now at home.

4. My new watch from Lord and Taylor. It's something I've been eyeing for months now, and I finally bought it...15% off, too!

5. Surrender by Cheap Trick. 

Happy weekend!

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Life Update: One Month Countdown

This past Sunday marked the one-month countdown until move-in day for college. I'm super excited. This summer has been amazing and relaxing and just what I needed--some family time, a new job experience and just focusing on some of my own projects--but I seriously can't wait until I get back to New Haven and my new dorm and my friends and classes and Dean Flick.

Even though I did most of my college prep shopping last summer and pretty much have everything I need, there is still so much to do in this last month...

1. I have to renew my p.o. box. I haven't been to that post office since early May so I can only wonder what's been sitting in my box since then. Probably lot's of junk mail. Maybe Chase Bank will offer me $100 to open an account with them again. Banks always want to be your first. 

2. I have to give some serious thought about my major. I have to declare it by the end of second semester. Suddenly that seems way too close. 

3. I have to figure out what classes I want to look into and shop. Which refers me back to #2 because I kind of need to have an idea of what directions I'll go into in order to knock out some of the prerequisite classes for the major. Grr. 

4. I just bought some new bedsheets and bath towels at Bed Bath and Beyond. I'm sad to say that last year's buys at Target from it's dorm collection ended up being super-cheap and bad quality. My bedsheets were discolored after just one wash. So were the towels. My ultimate advice is not to skimp on the important things. And your bed is important--it's where you sleep, study, chill, watch Netflix, munch on everything bagels and read ebooks on your iPhone late into the night. Bedding is one of those things where you don't want to be cheap. 

5. I have to pack it all. I'm not sure how that's getting done. 

Anyways we have some serious thunderstorm and tornado watches going on over here. Right now I have the fan humming in the background and I'm just listening to the rain outside. Lots and lots of lightning and wind before. 

The view from the car, as we were leaving Bed Bath and Beyond. It was dark within minutes. 

Happy Thursday! 

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High Line and Circle Line Cruise - Part II

After The High Line, we walked around a bit towards pier 83. We found a street market (kind of sketchy) that featured giant wooden mermaids, leather shorts, a very old doll carriage and a single ukelele.

Our first look at the boat. We took the Circle Line Harbor Lights Cruise--I love the city at night. And the cruise started just as the sun was going down so we saw this beautiful transformation of the skyline. 

 View from the boat, before sailing off... 

One last view from the cab. 

We all collapsed once we got on the train. I love these days. 

See Part I

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

High Line and Circle Line Cruise - Part I

Last summer my mom and I as well as a couple family friends spent a wonderful day in the city.
Last Saturday, my family recreated that perfect day. It was wonderful. First we went to The High Line, an elevated park on the West Side.
They used the site of a very old rail line to build such a beautiful place where people can walk, sit, tan and lounge all while gazing at Manhattan rooftops.

We trained it down to the city. When we got to Grand Central, we ate a late lunch at the Oyster Bar (a couple dozen little necks? can't go wrong.) My first picture of this day happens to be in the bathroom of this restaurant--they had the coolest couch in the shape of lips! (That's me in the mirror's reflection)

The view from the cab...

Walking up one of the entrances of the park. 

Walking along, there are always benches and places to sit. Here there was even a small water pool. Perfect for taking off your shoes and giving the bottoms of your feet a quick refresher. 

The High Line really is one of my favorite places. There are mostly apartment buildings bordering the park--they probably get very little privacy seeing as hundreds and hundreds of people are walking right by their windows every day. Still I think it'd be kind of cool to live right by The High Line. At least they aren't next to a noisy rail line anymore! 

We happened upon a zoo...

My favorite: the owl, of course!

Towards the end we finally got to my favorite spot in the park. This is my favorite building to photograph. 
High Line - Summer 2011
High Line - Summer 2012
Posted by Picasa

Next up, Part II - the Circle Line Cruise.
Happy Wednesday!

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

What I Learned Today - July 24, 2012

Attitude is what you make it. Only you are in control of how you handle things, how you react and how you'll move forward.

Not to give too much away about my summer internship, I work with kids (mostly teens) who have some things going on in their lives and who have some issues.

I was explaining to one of the girls in my group--she is in control. She can turn around a sucky day and make it a positive. She can decide to move on with a good attitude.

So grab your drinks (Arizona raspberry iced tea, for me!) and let's make a toast. Let's try as hard as we possibly can to stop with the "moods." We'll put smiles on our faces and step strongly into the face of tough times* with the upmost grace, positivity and fearlessness.

*and by tough times I mean anything from getting gum stuck under your shoe, to dealing with family problems, to sitting in four hours of traffic, to losing a job, to sitting next to the baby that won't stop crying. 

found here
Hope you enjoyed your Tuesday. Mine was a bit long, but I vow to look on the bright side and learn from the dark.

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Saturday, July 21, 2012

Amazing Recipes

So my friend and I have been on a bit of a cooking spree. We've only seen each other a handful of times this summer...but each time we always end up in the kitchen trying out some new recipe we just found online.

These two have been favorites of ours, and I can't not pass along the goodness.

The first is this awesome chicken marinade with honey and soy sauce. We made chicken and vegetable kabobs one night with this marinade, and I can't seem to bring myself to even think about trying out a new marinade. This is just too good. Also, I never would have thought of the combination of honey and soy sauce, but wow doesn't that sound amazing?

We didn't have any cloves of garlic, but we found garlic powder to be just as fine, adding a very nice flavor. We didn't stick too much to the exact measurements. We tended to eyeball it all, going heavy on the ingredients we knew would add a ton of flavor. We had under and hour for the chicken to marinate, but had no trouble tasting the marinade once it was all grilled.

The second recipe has pretty much become a family favorite. My father keeps requesting this one over and over again. This Mexican Grilled Corn is the lovely brainchild of a former classmate of mine, Amanda Shulman, who has her own food blog, Hungree Girl. Butter, lime and cilantro make an incredible combination--I can't get over it. I mean, never mind that cilantro is probably my most favorite ingredient ever. This is a summer must. 

Here is the corn right after I brushed it with the butter/lime/cilantro sauce and added the cheese. I then usually sprinkle a TON of cilantro on top. 

With just about a month left of summer break, I can't wait to try out some more recipes. Maybe I'll experiment with different ways to cook shrimp. Or I'll go on a quest to find the perfect chocolate cake. Or I'll try recreating this super-awesome cilantro rice that I had at a wonderful restaurant called Havana Central.

Happy Saturday!

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Friday, July 20, 2012


So, I don't exactly wear glasses. But ever since I was little I've always wanted them. Everyone in my family wears them. My parents, my brother, my grandparents. I bet the dog would have to have eyeglasses if we ever got his eyes checked.

But I guess that's how it's always sort of been. They are all right-handed as well, while I'm left-handed. And when I was seven I realized this pattern and was almost convinced I was adopted. Almost. It was a close call.

When I was in kindergarten, I wanted glasses so badly my parents bought me a pair with unaltered lenses--I wore them proudly. My mom had to convince me it was okay to take them off while I got my hair cut.

So while I don't walk around wearing fake eyeglasses anymore (but hey, I'm warming up to the idea again...), I still haven't outgrown the I-want-eyeglasses-like-everyone-else phase. So I like to imagine what kind I would wear if I did need glasses.

Eyeglasses by marisoldahl on

1. Urban Outfitters, Cat-eye Readers, $14
2. Ray-Ban, avana/beige texture
3. Kate Spade, Marianne, $68
4. Anthropologie, Confit Readers, $38
5. Ray-Ban, brown/opaline pink
6. Ray-Ban, Original Wayfarer
7. Urban Outfitters, Smart & Pretty Readers, $14

Happy Weekend! Hoping to see the Katy Perry movie at some point. Maybe a trip into the city to do a sunset cruise. We went on one last summer, and honestly it was one of my favorite memories from that summer...

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Life Update: Lobster Lovin'

Over fourth of July weekend, I cracked open my first lobster (with the help of my lovely aunt, of course). I was super proud of this, even though I've never been a big lobster-eating type of person. I think the taste is a bit strong. But still I was super excited to make homemade lobster salad.

Have you ever been more open to eating something once you saw firsthand how it was cooked? I think that was kind of my experience with lobster. Personally cutting up the lobster bits, adding a couple teaspoons of mayo, some hot sauce, celery and scallions--let's just say I'm a lobster person now.

In other news:
1. Work is super-fun, but like any job the days can be long and it can get a bit stressful. because of work, I now know how to make a friendship bracelet, I can jump into a pool without freaking out about how cold it is, I'm meeting some amazing people and I now have a constant craving for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

2. I've finally made my way through all the Angry Birds levels for the original and Angry Birds Space editions. I'm thinking Rio next, but I guess I'll just pace myself.

3. Course listings came out for school a few days ago. I've been having fun reading about all different classes and trying out different class schedules.

4. My dad started an evening softball team for my brother and other kids with special needs. We've been having a blast so far--they love it. I've only been to a couple games to help out as official catcher. Sometimes we have barbecues with the other families afterwards. Monday nights have never been more awesome.

5. Speaking of barbecues, Trader Joe's chicken apple sausage is pretty darn amazing. Try it.

Hope your week is going well!


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Friday, July 13, 2012

Five Things

that I stumbled upon this week...

photo by Clark Little. found here.
1. puppy! and more puppy
2. 5 seconds of every #1 billboard hot 100 hit from 1993-2011. seeing as I was born in 1993, I thought this was pretty awesome. 
4. pictures of waves. make one your desktop background (I chose the one above!)
5. take a break. we all need one once in a while. 

happy weekend!

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Happiness is...

So a while back I came across this 100 Things post on Sofia's Journal. Here she identified, in a series of ten posts, 100 things that make her happy. I thought this was an awesome idea and saw that a bunch of other bloggers did this as well. I decided to try making my own list of 100 things that make me happy.

but honestly I just about had a panic attack when I finally sat down to write my first post. I wanted this list to be just right, you know? I wanted each one to be creative, exciting and above all true. but to choose just 100 things? I don't think I'm up for that challenge.

there are too many things to be happy about. and so while I was sitting there, trying to craft that perfect record of 100 things that truly make me happy, I realized how ironic it was that making a 100 Things list was kind of making me the opposite of happy.

So I decided to start...and keep going on. we'll see where it goes.

so, my inaugural post of 10 things (in no particular order) that make me happy:

photo from tumblr

  1. jumping off a diving board
  2. grocery shopping
  3. finally finishing a super-long exam
  4. reading on the beach
  5. singing at the top of your lungs
  6. climbing into bed after a workout 
  7. watching the sunset
  8. helping a stranger
  9. writing letters
  10. finding out your favorite boy band is coming out with a new album
what makes you happy?

thanks again, Sofia's Journal, for the inspiration! 

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Sunday, July 8, 2012

fourth of july weekend.

because the fourth fell on a wednesday this year, work gave us a super-long weekend so we made our way up to our favorite vacation spot in Newport, VT. the family's been going there for generations and honestly it is one of my most favorite places in the world.

it's a small town, not too much to do. but the air is fresh, I've never seen the grass greener and the sights are gorgeous. it's calming and simple.

we only stayed a few days, but we filled our days nicely. we made some super delicious food, including my favorite cilantro corn and lobster salad. we kayaked around Lake Memphremagog. we saw a rainbow. I had the best slice of blueberry apple crumble pie in the world. I met so many friendly dogs. we took long, leisurely walks. I watched the sunset on the dock with my parents. we saw fireworks. many moose tracks milkshakes were drunk. we saw a parade. and we checked out the annual chowderfest.

there was even a man on stilts.

of course, I'm forgetting a bunch of things at the moment because it's getting a bit late here and I still have to prep for work tomorrow.

earlier this morning, before we left, we went raspberry picking. 

of course, it isn't a fourth of july without fireworks. 

 and if you didn't get any fireworks love this year (or just want a bit more...) I made a video with my handy iPhone...enjoy!

hope you all had a fun weekend.
 p.s. a very unexpected but liberating thing about our getaway was the complete lack of internet, hence hardly any actual updates from the past few days. good thing I posted my Five Things in advance!

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Friday, July 6, 2012

Five Things

...that have been inspiring me lately.

1. Summer has really brought out the cook in me. I love making anything refreshing and delicious, so I'm dying to try out some of these amazing-looking summer desserts
2. I really liked Miss Robin's post, "I WILL Change the World." The message is short and sweet, but something we all need to remind ourselves of from time to time. 
3. So in love with this catalog card generator. I'm now trying to find legit reasons for me to use this in everyday life. 
4. The Kappa in me just kinda melted at the sight of this guy. Going to make one once I get my hands on blue and blue felt. 
5. Last fall for a leadership program, I took this personality test. In short, I was identified an introvert, and introverts and extroverts were paired with each other in the class. Now, I made nothing of my "diagnosis" but I did find this article interesting. Apparently introvertedness bears a slight stigma. 

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Sunday, July 1, 2012

June in pictures

June was relaxing, exciting and just plain fun. Here's just a bit of what I was up to this past month...

1. we stocked up on so much fresh fruit this month. those raspberries were amazing. 
2. I memorized the recipe for sangria. 
4. saw the moon. on multiple occasions. 
5. Devin graduated, had a graduation party and many awards ceremonies. 
6. dinner dates with friends. 
7. planting flowers in the flower box. 
8. Mets game
9. grilling. 
10. broke my heart over a baby rabbit who couldn't find his way back to his mommy. 

Also, today we celebrated my dad's birthday...and went to Coney Island! Seriously I've never been so I was super excited to see it. The drive was a bit long because of traffic, but I love driving into the city--all the sights are fascinating. We had some lunch at Coney Island, walked the boardwalk, rode the Wonder Wheel, got some Italian ices and spumoni (soo good) and then settled in to what a Brooklyn Cyclones game. It was a great day, if a little hot. 

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