First impression review: John Fluevog shoes women’s Zachary boot

As usual, I have not been compensated in any way for this review, and the product being reviewed was purchased by myself at full price. (Not that I’d turn down a discount if it was offered…)
I just started breaking these beauties in, so expect a follow up to this review once they’re a bit worn in.
So, I have a really bad addiction to quality, and ‘Vogs are the perfect package of quality and style. I couldn’t really afford these, but I had to have them, so I apologized to my credit card and went for it anyway. XD

When I opened the box, I was greeted by the wonderful smell of nice leather. Then I noticed the sweet postcard from Ramona at the NY store whom I spoke to a couple times during the order process. I love personal touches like that! ❤
Needless to say I was already grinning like an idiot before I even pulled away the signature shoe print tissue. The boots are absolutely beautiful, and I tried them on immediately. Perfect fit, as usual. (If you order some 'Vogs online its always a good idea to consult with a "Fluevologist" about size, because they KNOW their shoes and will help you find your perfect fit.) The boot itself is beautiful and feels strong but supple. So far my ankles haven't gotten a single blister, which is pretty amazing really. The foot area is lined in leather, and feels comfortable and not at all sweaty. The upper is unlined, so they fit nice and snug. I have skinny-ass ankles and moderately big calves, and I love that these boots manage to accomodate both comfortably. The sole is quiet and feels almost bouncy. It also says it resists oil, alkali, and Satan, which could come in handy some day… ;D
I especially love the lucky swirl at the bottom of the lacing, because it gives these boots a certain girlyness I wouldn't have though big, tough boots could have.
I love them so much that I already have a second pair on hold in purple (to match my hair!) and I can't wait to finish paying them off so they can be mine! (Hey, they say you aren't supposed to wear the same shoes every day so the leather can dry completely. That's my excuse for needing two pairs.)
In summary, these boots are one of the best things I've ever bought. They're gorgeous and suit me better than anything I've ever owned that I didn't make myself. The pull loops on my boots say it best: DDFT (don't delay, fluevog today!)

Update: I went for a mile and a half hike over the weekend, and no blisters, no sore spots, no discomfort. At the end of the hike my feet felt great!

It’s time to apologize…

We are almost all mean people. We are hopelessly cruel, more likely to insult than compliment. We are the harshest bullies in the world.
I know many of you (hopefully all) are thinking, “I’m not mean! I’d never insult someone! WTF?!?”
You are though. Want to know who you’re bullying? 
Look in the mirror.
Think about what you say to yourself day after day. Would you say those things to a stranger? A family member? Your best friend? Would they say them to you?
I hope the answer is no.
It’s time to stop.
I want you to take a selfie right now. Don’t fix your hair. Don’t do your makeup. Ignore the lighting. Just take a picture.
Got it?
Now look at the person in that picture. Look them straight in the eye. Don’t analyze the picture.  Don’t pick yourself apart. Pretend it’s your best friend in the world, because really you should be your own best friend anyway.
Now apologize.  Apologize for all the times you called you fat. Apologize for all the times you called you ugly. Apologize for all the times you said you weren’t good enough. Apologize for all the times you compared yourself to models and pictures instead of appreciating your unique self. Apologize for thinking you weren’t worthy of love and respect, and for hurting yourself to try and “fix” the problems that were never really there to begin with. Say it out loud, even if you feel stupid doing it. Keep saying it until you forgive yourself.  Keep saying it until you can look at that picture and see how beautiful you actually are. Until you realize you’re looking at a picture of a really amazing person that you honestly love and respect.
This stuff is hard.
You might have to do this every day for a long time before it starts to feel okay. Keep doing it. Trust me. You’re worth the effort.
I’ll be doing it too.
When you’re feeling brave, post your selfie with something you needed to apologize to you for, and tag it #imsorryme so I can find it. Post more if you want to. Post a new one every day even. I’m posting one today, so I hope you’ll join me.

I’m back from my extended absence…

I’ve been up to a lot of things lately, so this week I’m going to make a general update on what’s in the works. I’ll expand on the interesting bits later. 🙂
I graduated in August, and have been job hunting constantly since then. I don’t want to take just anything.  I want to find the RIGHT job.  It’s a ton of work. 😛
That’s been taking up most of my time really.
I’ve also been doing a lot of sewing and crafting, as usual. I’ll make a separate post about that soon, because I need to take better pictures of most of it.
I recently opened a Cafe Press shop called Notes From The Valley because I’ve been doing lots of photography lately. If you check it out, please tell me what you think! It isn’t “finished” yet, but it’s getting there.
Finally, there’s two big projects I’d like to talk about a little, one of which I plan to devote an entire post to next week. First, I’m starting a second blog devoted to something that has become very important to me: buying better quality things, less frequently,  and in smaller quantities. I’m not going to go into detail here because I’m hoping you’ll go check out the first post later today! You can find it here. Secondly, and this will be the topic of next week’s post, I am planning to enter at least one (hopefully several) beauty contests because I want to stand up for alternative beauty standards, and use the appearances to speak out against bullying and spread a body positive message. I don’t expect to win (purple hair and piercings are not usually beauty queen material…) but I think it will be fun, and hopefully I can reach some of the girls while they’re still young and malleable.  🙂
I’ve officially scheduled Wednesdays as WordPress Wednesdays, so expect new content every Wednesday from here on out! Thanks for being patient during my absence! ❤