Friday, February 27, 2015

february budget

J.Crew Factory Tee: originally $50 + 50% off = $26
Frye Wedges: originally $227, on sale for $113 + $50 giftcard = $63

February budget: $89   (left for this quarter: $411)

So not exactly a big spending month! You guys know I love cooler weather, but it's been negative degrees here for most of the month, so I've been very anti clothes and pro heating blankets instead. I do really enjoy the two pieces I did buy though. I added a striped shirt to the donate pile and added this one into my closet - it has a lot more structure and just fits me better than the previous shirt did. The wedges were something I've had my eye on for a month, and went my size popped back, I ordered them. I've only had a chance to wear them once, but they feel really great on, and I can really see them getting a ton of wear in the next few months once it warms up.

I was also very lucky to receive the following from my sponsors. I've been saving Shopbop credits for the past three months to buy these shoes - they are even prettier in real life. I put them on every morning just to wear around my bedroom (you can't tell me you haven't done that!), but I won't actually wear them until all of the snow melts. The earrings were also a fun addition to my jewelry collection - I think they are just so cute! I seriously would be an astronaut if I could, but I think these star earrings are probably as close as it's going to get. I also received a free three month prescription to Rocksbox, which you'll see more of in the next couple of posts, but if you've been interested in trying it out, you can get your first month free with code franishxoxo.

So now that spring clothes are something I'm actually allowed to think about a little bit (even though it won't be above 35 degrees for at least another month!). I did order these pants the other day, but since they haven't arrived yet, I don't know if I'll keep them. I do think they'll be a good way to mix it up a bit - I'm so bored with black pants! In addition,  I've wanted a jean jacket for years now, but just never found one I really liked. I swear I probably tried on a hundred when I still had time to go thrift shopping! I do have my eye on a few online, with this one from J.Crew being my favorite. Maybe during the next great sale I'll finally order it (along with this shirt - I love the pipe detailing!).

So that was me - how was February for you guys? I'd love for you to link up below - just please remember to link back to this post so your readers can find other bloggers who share their budgets!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


herringbone vest and striped shirt
I feel there are certain very clear blogging trends that emerge every year - things that you see all over Pinterest that may or may not be normal things people wear in real life - and I feel that in 10 years, you'll be able to look at certain outfits and know what year they are from just based on the trendy items in the outfit. 

For example, the herringbone vest is very 2013-2015 (is it bad that I also want the red gingham version? It doesn't help that it's also on sale...). The large oversized scarves (which, side note, I hope never go out of style because I love them) are also a pretty big thing this winter. While I try really hard not to get suckered into every trend out there, sometimes I just can't resist the really good ones - like black and white vests, or scarves that double as blankets at the library. 

So maybe in a few years this will look super dated....but today I like it ;)
herringbone vest
herringbone vest with a striped tee
Tee: J.Crew Factory [exact]
Vest: J.Crew Factory [exact]
Scarf: gift from Steph [similar]
Pants: Gap [similar on sale]
Boots: Vince Camuto [exact on sale]
Watch: Michael Kors [save | exact]*
Nails: Essie [exact - love love love!]

*as I was looking for inexpensive options, I stumbled across this (not inexpensive) watch - how cool is it?! I don't need another watch, but I think this one would make such a fun conversation piece.
what to wear with a herringbone vest

Sunday, February 22, 2015

top three [02.22.2015]

Franco Sarto Women's L-Motor Motorcycle
OTK boots (that also come in this amazing maroon color): one | two | three
  • Did you know that there are a very small percentage of women who have two uteruses (uteri?) - some even have two vaginas! Most aren't discovered until infertility problems appear, although many are still able to carry babies to full term. 
  • Hermaphroditism is a condition I still have trouble always wrapping my head around. Basically, a hermaphrodite is someone who has both ovarian and testicular tissues. There are various forms, but the basic concept is that there is a discrepancy between the genetic sex (so being XX or XY), the gonad morphology (testes or ovaries), and the external genitalia (penis or vagina). This documentary goes into it more and a few people's experiences with being born a hermaphrodite. There is also a woman Olympic runner who was found, after testing, to be externally female but had no uterus, and had undescended testes instead. 
  • Learning about the process of baby making (mmhmmm) is both inspiring and scary. There are SO many things that have to happen to 1. get pregnant, 2. keep the pregnancy, and 3. have a completely healthy child. It's shocking that the human race even exists because so much can go wrong at any point along the road from conception to birth. 

on the internet

  • I stumbled upon these pewter chinos and have fallen in dress pants love. Wouldn't the coral pair be fun too? 
  • I got my sister this to-go palette for Christmas, and now want it for myself. It would drastically cut down the amount of makeup I have to schlep back and forth between my house and my boyfriend's. Think he'll notice if another product shows up in his medicine cabinet? ;)
  • This sweater would be a great alone or layered over a button up...and with it being under $20, you can even pick it up in two colors. Looking to add something to your order? How about this amazing stacked ring (it does all the hard work for you) or this double zip shoulder bag?

on franish

notable sales

  • SPOILERS for GoT: A couple of years late to the game, but CR and I have been watching about 20 minutes of Game of Thrones every night before we go to bed. We just finished season three, and you guys, I don't know if I can continue! The "red wedding" was so horrible, and I can't stop thinking about it. I know it's just TV, but as George M.M. Martin said, you should grieve if a fictional character is killed. Good thing I get more of Robb's beautiful eyes in the upcoming Cinderella movie. He's just so dreamy. 
  • I, like probably a lot of women, am constantly growing out my hair only to cut it because I got bored. This is how long my hair was before I cut it off three-ish years ago, and I've regretted it a ton since then (also it's kind of fun to look back at early blogging Fran haha). I am getting my hair cut on Tuesday (it's been four months...) and while I'm kind of bored with my hair currently, I will NOT cut it off...but I do want to change something. I'm thinking something like this - just a little different without chopping all my hair off! 
  • After a very frustrating initial attempt to start a blog redesign (the person apparently dropped off the face of the planet after I paid her...), I have found a new designer and I'm so excited to spruce things up around here. No major changes, just a few updates since everything you see on this oh so professional blog has been done by me, someone who has very little computer or design training. I'm also debating replacing the traditional blogger comments with Disqus - I think it would be better just because you get notifications if I or someone else responds to your comment. Anyone feel strongly about it either way?

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

try, try again

Do you have clothing in your closet that you consistently don't touch because you had a bad experience with it? I do, and for me it is this dress. In theory, this dress was made for me - black and white, sleeves, polka dot - what's not to love? Well on the two separate occasions I've tried wearing it, I ended up hating it. It came with this horrible slip that fit wrong, and so I have just shied away from it every since. There is nothing wrong with the dress, it's just those two experiences of trying to make it work and having it fail that have left it sitting in the back of my closet since then.

As I'm trying to declutter my closet before I move in May, I've been making an effort to wear some of those less worn items to see if it's me or them. In this situation, it's a me problem, I just didn't have the right undergarments. I purchased one of these slips at Target, and the problem is no longer a problem. Now it just needs to warm up above negative a million so I can wear it with flats and no tights!
Dress: Gap [really cute similar]
Scarf: Banana Republic [exact in grey....tempting!]
Belt: Everlane [exact]
Earrings: c/o BaubleBar [exact]
Tights: Target [exact]
Boots: Franco Sarto [exact]
Watch: c/o Daniel Wellington [exact]
Bag: Kate Spade [save option]

Monday, February 16, 2015

review: one love organics cleansing sponge + skin savior, and more

It's -15 degrees today, and so I've been fighting the good fight against my dry and flaky skin. Here are a few of my recent hits and misses when it comes to skin care for dry skin and acne:  

Amore Pacific Exfoliator: makes your face feel squeaky clean
One Love Organics Skin Savior: for those dry patches that won't go away
One Love Organics Cleaning Sponge: HIGHLY recommend this one!!
Kiehl's Spot Treatment: drying but works to bring breakouts down a notch
Peter Thomas Roth Mattifying Gel: for post break out, pre make up skin fixing

Sunday, February 15, 2015

top three [02.15.2015]

cognac flats + belt works every time: 1 | 2 |

in medicine
  • Prion diseases are a group of progressive brain diseases where prions (basically misfolded proteins) create havoc on the brain and put a bunch of holes into it, making it look like a sponge (hence the other term for it, spongiform encephalopathies). Some are acquired (like mad cow disease, from eating infected cow) but there's also an inherited form called Familial Fatal Insomnia. In this horrible disease, people suffer from progressively worsening insomnia that leads to hallucinations, delirium, and eventually death. Here's a 10 minute documentary on the history and one family's experience with it.
  • Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome is another genetic disease that results in a build up of uric acid in the body. Overall, uric acid buildup is associated with symptoms like gout and kidney stones, and in the case of LNS, it also results in the patients self-mutilating themselves, usually by biting their lips or fingers.
  • I'm a huge visual learner, which is why Picmonic has been such a great resource for me the past 1.5 years. I use it every single day, and I know that it's been a big advantage in my classes so far, and for the boards. If you are in medical /dental/ PA school and are looking for something to help you learn all that information, you can use the code "friendoffranziska" to get 20% off a 6 or 18 month prescription. Here's a bit more about how I use it in school! You can also sign up for a free trial and test out 25 picmonics to see if it's something that would work for you.

on the internet
  • I love nothing more than a great striped shirt, so I of course loved this simple but so chic look on Jessica (and that shirt may or may not be on its way to me now...)
  • Stripes win again - Audrey shows you 4 different ways to wear a striped blazer (still need one of your own? This one is adorable and won't break the bank). 
  • Not model skinny, and not plus size - the area where most of us fall anyway. Let's hope it's a trend that stays around. It's interesting, because most of my referrals through my stats are through various forums where women are looking for "average sized woman" style inspiration. I don't really know why there aren't more "average" sized bloggers out there! 

  • How cool is the back of these shoes? Definitely dress code appropriate with just a little bit of sass. 
  • I've recently seen this lipstick (in Roman Holiday) on a bunch of different bloggers and I'm thisclose to ordering a tube of it for myself - doesn't it look like the prettiest pink? #copycat #notashamed
  • I would never have believed that this skirt was from Target unless I saw it on the website with my own eyes. 

on franish

notable sales

  • YOU GUYS. I won a couch! Grace had the coolest giveaway going on a few weeks ago and I wanted to win SO BADLY because who doesn't want to win a beautiful expensive couch? Turns out, I WON. I about fell out of my chair when she emailed me yesterday to tell me. The best parts (besides free!) is that we can choose any color we want...and there are a ton of them! I'm so giddy about the whole thing.
  • I have pretty bad back pain from sitting all the time, so for the last year I've been using one of those exercise balls to sit on instead of a hard chair. It actually has helped with the pain, plus it's fun to bounce around on when I get bored. What isn't so great about it is that sometimes cats want to get on the heated blanket that normally rests on it, and then pokes holes all over it when it moves. Since my life with a cat has only just begun, I broke down and ordered one of these kneeling chairs. People swear it has helped with their back pain, and since the amount of time I sit in a chair is only going to increase, I figured it was time to try one out. 
  • This was the first weekend since school has started where we don't have a systems exam the following week, so it's been a nice combination of board studying and taking a few hours to ourselves. It was a great way to spend Valentine's Day :) CR got me the coolest monogrammed pajamas, and after a day of studying at the library, we went out for a great sushi dinner. I sure did get lucky with that guy.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

review: everlane's heavyweight tee

everlane's striped shirt I have been a long time fan of Everlane. Since reviewing my first t-shirt purchase two years ago, I've worn one of their tees probably 5 out of 7 days of every week. I find that they fit me so well, they really hold up, and are just all around the best tees I've found. I even got my friends and boyfriend hooked! So needless to say, when they announced that they were coming out with a striped shirt, I was SO PUMPED. I own probably half a dozen striped shirts of various colors and stripe widths, but I feel I'm always look for that perfect striped shirt. I don't know exactly what the requirements for this perfect shirt are, but I'll know when I find it ;)

So in hopes that the Everlane striped shirt would be that perfect shirt,  I ordered the grey/white version in my normal size (large). I was hoping they would have a few more color choices, but the grey one was my more my style (and something I don't already own). When I first took it out of the packaging, it seems a bit bigger than the tees I already own, and I feared that the sizing was a bit off (I find that their cashmere runs almost a size too large). Once I put it on, I was glad I got my normal size since a medium wouldn't have fit my shoulders So here's what the shirt looks like, not tucked in or sleeves rolled:
Everlane's Women's Heavyweight Tee Review
Women's Heavyweight Tee

and here's how it compares to their v-neck tees (both are brand new, unwashed):
everlane reviews

Things I like about the shirt: 
  • It's a really beautiful thick cotton fabric. It's thick enough to be worn on its own but not too thick that you couldn't layer a cardigan over it. I could see myself wearing this a ton in the winter with various scarves.
  • The arms are long enough, something that doesn't always happen
  • It's a bit longer too, which is great for a more casual vibe 
  • The side vent is a cute detail that also helps the shirt sit better

Things I wish they had done differently: 
  • I'm not a fan of dropped shoulders. I feel it rounds out my already round shoulders even more
  • The neckline feels just an inch too high on my throat - when I move my arms back, it puts pressure on my throat.
  • The cut is a bit boxier than their tees, which makes me look...more boxy
  • I wish it came in black and white! That's probably my biggest complaint, and I could overlook the other issues if it was in a color I really wanted. 
Everlane striped shirt review
Women's Heavyweight Tee review

So in the end, this is not my "perfect" shirt. It's a beautiful shirt, but I wish I could just tweek a few things to make it exactly how I want it. I do have my eye on this top though, because it seems to fit a few more of my requirements. 

If you are interested in learning a bit more about Everlane, you can sign up here using my referral code, or here without. Some of the nicest, and most worn, items in my closet are from Everlane, and it's truly a company I believe in. 

P.S. my jeans (currently on sale) + my lip color + my nails (in karissa) + my watch

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

no accessories needed

easy work outfit - bow blouse and skinny pants I have always loved the idea of a pussy bow blouse - it's very Joan Harris meets menswear meets 'needs no accessories'. I picked this one up when it was on mega sale a few weeks ago - I got it for $16! It's definitely not the nicest shirt I've ever owned (it's a bit too big in the waist and the fabric is a bit shiny) but I think it will be great for wearing under a white coat the next few years. Because it comes with its own accessory, there isn't a lot of need for adding necklaces or scarves (things I won't be able to wear anyway). 

I'm starting to think a bit more about what items I need in my closet for clinical rotations, so for those of you going through it or have gone through them, any tips or tricks are appreciated! A few more work appropriate pants and comfortable shoes are in order for sure.
Blouse: Loft [exact - similar below]
Pants: The Limited [exact]
Watch: Michael Kors [save | exact]
Belt: Gap [very similar]
Shoes: Banana Republic [save | exact]
Bag: Kate Spade [similar]
and here are a couple of other cute and inexpensive bow blouses.  number two is definitely my favorite (it would go with literally everything, but especially my new midi skirt!)

Monday, February 9, 2015

bows on my (red) toes

red flats with bows 
one: a soft leather version of the classic ballet flat
two: available in a ton of fun colors/textures
three: a sleek take on the more expensive Ferragamos 
four: a leather shoe for $10 is a win win
five: a flat with just the right amount of cushion
six: a sportier take on the classic ballet flat
seven: possibly the cutest shoes ever
eight: the black trim makes them a bit unique

I bought my pair of red ballet flats from Old Navy for $8 on a total whim almost 3 years ago. I didn't think I would get that much use out of them, but I was trying to branch out and try new things, so red flats seemed like a great place to start. I've worn these shoes countless times since then, and so therefore, it's time to replace and upgrade them. 

I've been such a fan of the Salvatore Ferragamo flats for years. Many of my favorite bloggers, who are all working ladies whose taste and opinion I highly trust, can't stop raving about them (see the teal on Jessica, the red on Adina, the blue on Rachelle, and the nude on Jean). Since I teamed up with Shopbop last fall, I've approached it as an opportunity to add a few pieces to my closet that at this point in my life (ie finances) I couldn't otherwise. I've been hoarding my credits for the last few months, and I'll finally be able to order my own pair at the end of the month. I know that a pair of classic red flats will be a staple in my closet, and so I'm excited to add this beautiful pair to mine. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

top three [2.08.2015]

a light weight sweater across the season

  • Capgras delusion is a mental disorder where people believe that their loved ones have been replaced with impostors. The cause of this hasn't been discovered yet, but it sounds horrible. Here's an NPR story about it!
  • If during a pregnancy a mother has hypothyroidism, the fetus suffers severe deficiences once born. The medical term for this is "cretinism", which is a word that stems from the word Christian, because at the time it was discovered, people believed that these people were so mentally impaired that they were incapable of sinning. 
  • Don't google carbuncle. or furuncle. 

  • I saw this watch recently on pinterest via instagram and I'm so in love with it. I definitely don't need another watch right now, but it's fun to daydream. 
  • Wouldn't this top look great with some dark skinny jeans, cognac leather, and gold accessories? 
  • Do you have a hot date for Saturday and don't know what to wear? This dress will be perfect (now, and in the spring!)
  • P.S. Did you see that Everlane came out with a striped tee?! I'll be sure to do a full review when mine comes!

on the internet

notable sales

on franish

  • Happy 30th birthday to my bff Caitlin - we all celebrated for a few hours on Friday night (while responsibly drinking water between each drink) and it was exactly what we all needed. I don't know what I would do without you! 
  • I was nominated for student of the month this month :)
  • So I live in a pretty cute little townhouse community where half the residents are med students, and the other half are families with small children. We feel super safe there, and feel we got really lucky with our living situation. So imagine my surprise when I came home Wednesday morning to find a bunch of cops and DEA agents outside my house. Apparently my neighbor a few doors down, who I had never seen since they moved in a few months ago, was a member of a Mexican drug cartel and was being busted for cocaine and heroine trafficking. I had noticed some strange people in our area the days leading up to that, and when I mentioned that to one of the agents, he said it was his people staking out the area! It was seriously like real life Breaking Bad. 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

just wanting to be normal

simple weekend look The closer we get to the end of our second year of school and the beginning of our clinical years, the more and more I look forward to being a bit more of a normal person. Right now, between school work and studying for boards, we don't get a night, much less a day off. Every hour I'm not studying is an hour I feel incredibly guilty about. But it's also really hard to just go go go and never have a break. The worst times for me are really on weekends, when I see everyone else enjoy their time off. 

CR knows that that really does affect me, so we have a new rule that once a month, we go out for Sunday brunch. The library doesn't open until noon anyway, so once a week we get to sleep in a bit more, actually spend a bit of time doing my hair and make-up, and enjoy a nice meal out together. It really has been nice to have that to look forward to and feel like a normal person, even if it's just for the hour before we go to the library all day ;)

rebecca minkoff love crossbody
Sweater: BR Factory [not similar, but how cool is this sweater?]
Pants: Gap [similar]
Scarf: gift from Steph 
Boots: Vince Camuto [exact]
Purse: c/o Shopbop [exact] **
Watch: c/o Daniel Wellington [exact]
** Shopbop has updated their sale section with a bunch of cute new items, including Rebecca Minkoff purses, and Paige denim (most under $140). The C. Wonder home decor and some Jonathan Adler accessories (like his adorable phone cases!) are really cheap right now - don't forget that if you have Amazon Prime, you get free 2 day shipping :)

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

ask me anything: fashion + style

This is the last installment of this round of Ask Me Anything. You can find previous answers to various other questions (med school, budgets, boyfriends) here. Have any questions you'd like to ask but hasn't been answered? Let me know in the comments!

If you could only shop at one store what would it be?

Monday, February 2, 2015

hussy ankles

simple cold weather work outfit I grew up in Wisconsin, so me and snow go way back. It's like that slightly annoying friend who you are initially excited to see and hang out with, but then you get sick of real quick after one too many unexpected visits. While I'm all about bundling up on those really snowy and drifty days, I don't wear boots for the 6 months straight there is snow on the ground. If it's not actually snowing, and there's just a slight dusting on the ground, I happily wear my flats for the 45 second walk I have from my car to school in the morning. I playfully call this showing off my hussy ankles because they are so bare and out in the open ;)

 I know sometimes you guys worry that I'm cold or dying of hypothermia when I wear ankle pants and flats in the winter, but once you spend two decades in -20 degree weather with real blizzards (real ones, NYC!), a dusting of snow at 30 degrees is nothing. 

how to wear a blanket scarf
Tee: Loft [exact on sale - love love love, should get a second]
Pants: The Limited [same style]
Scarf: present from Steph 
Belt: Gap [very similar]
Flats: Banana Republic [exact]
Watch: Michael Kors [exact]
And on an unrelated note, but because I'm wearing cognac here, I did order those wedges I talked about in my last budget post. They didn't have my size at the time, but I happened to check back a few days ago, and they had one left in my size, plus they were on a pretty steep discount (they are still 50% off from Amazon)!  They came the other day and are beautiful, but I'm also a crazy person and am wondering if the fact that they are slightly darker than my transport tote and leather belts will bother me. Thoughts? 
frye carson wedges, madewell transport tote
via instagram - follow along if you love puppies, too many shots of med school books, and very few food pictures ;)

Sunday, February 1, 2015

top three [02.01.15]

can't stop won't stop with these boots: one | two | three


  • Locked-in syndrome, or pseudocoma, happens when there is a lesion in the brainstem. Basically, the person has a stroke, goes into a coma for a few weeks, and then slowly regains consciousness, but can't physically move anything except possibly a bit of eye movement, so the patient still seems like they are in a coma when in fact they are fully conscious. Doesn't that sound completely horrible? A journalist and editor of French Elle named Jean-Dominique Bauby actually had this after suffering from a stroke and he ended up writing a whole book with only his eyes. He ended up dying two days after it was published. 
  • Oxytocin is a hormone that is released from your pituitary gland that has two big functions - uterine contractions during birth, and milk letdown during breast feeding. Interestingly, our bodies can be conditioned to the sight, sound, or smell of a baby to have milk let down happen. Kind of an unfortunate response if you aren't ready to breastfeed the second you see a baby...
  • In 2000, the measles were eliminated from the US. I don't fully understand why we are currently putting ourselves, and especially our infants (who can't be fully vaccinated yet) at risk for diseases that are preventable. I once read a quote that people who are afraid of vaccinations giving their children autism are more afraid of having an autistic child than their child dying of a preventable disease, and that really stuck with me. I don't mean to step on any toes here, but I spend day in and day out learning about these horrible diseases that happen when one isn't vaccinated, and I just don't understand how anyone could put their children at risk of getting these diseases when there are very real, and very safe, vaccines out there. 

on the internet

  • Besides the Chanel-like shoes, Target has been killing it lately with accessories. This tote would be a great addition to your closet (the reversible red makes me all *heart eyes*), while this watch is veerrrrrry  similar to this $1000+ version
  • How pretty is this top? I would need to do at least a million push-ups before I felt comfortable in a sleeveless top, but it may be worth it. 
  • Thoughts on this dress as a "wear to a wedding" dress? The back is so beautiful. 

on franish
  • on the blog: january's budget, and all the ladies who linked up!
  • on instagram: snowy mornings call for warm scarves, hot coffee, and cuddly dogs
  • on facebook: a throwback of 3 years of layering - upgrade or downgrade?

  • I hit a diet milestone this week by finally putting another hole in my belt. Although I've lost close to 15 pounds, I haven't changed dress sizes. The downside of being 5'9'' (besides that most jeans are too short) is that you need to lose quite a bit of weight to change dress sizes, but it did feel great to tighten up the belt a bit. 
  • My exam last monday went really really well - I was in the top 10%! Now if only this endocrine exam tomorrow would go that well....
  • Baer and I celebrated our 5 year anniversary the other day. He's grown about 40 pounds, still has feet too big for his body, and I love him more every day.