Mini Penny Blog

2012 in Review

Posted on: Monday, December 31, 2012


What a year. I feel like that the person I was a year ago has grown so much to where I am now. To be honest, I've had some rough times over the past five years or so — struggling with jobs and the like — and 2012 had its trials. Money was short and I was living in a big city. It was a big change from Columbus, but obviously a good one.

Chicago Recap

Posted on: Sunday, December 30, 2012


I had such a great time in Chicago for Xmas/Hanukkah — it was a much needed reminder that home is not far away. Here's a little photo dump of all the great times I had with my friends.


Lunch with Matt at Deli Boutique

Holiday Sweater by Grey Antics // Pleather skirt by UO



Learning to twerk


Nate's adorable dachshunds in their Barbour coats — Indiana & Rambo!
Jewish Christmas in China Town
Spotted Lil Bub taped up in a record store window
Lakeshore Drive on my way to the airport
Flight Delay
Ended up being stuck in the airport for ~7 hours. Ouch.
Overall, it was such a perfect trip! Lots of great shopping and great food. Until next time, Chicago...

Weekstagram // Dec 30 // Chicago Edition


I had an amazing week in Chicago! This round of Weekstagram features some of my favorite parts of my vacation...
  • The Chicago flag, always.
  • Visiting my ex roommate, Jack (and Dex, too, of course).
  • Definitely made time to stop by The Wormhole.
  • Picked up some galaxy leggings at a boutique for under $20.
  • Saw some old friends — Josh and Nate (wah?!) at Soul Night at the Empty Bottle. How appropriate. It was great seeing these guys!
  • Skyler's kitty, Latrice, is too adorable.
  • Oh, and Angus was cat sitting this cutie named Sam.
  • Logan Square always feels like home. Love!
  • And of course, reuniting with my bestie Matt.
Follow Mini Penny on Instagram @chaplinnn.

Home for the Holidays

Posted on: Wednesday, December 19, 2012


This year I treated myself to what I wanted most for Christmas — not an iPad or a new pair of fancy shoes, but a trip home to Chicago. I'll be back in my favorite city from this evening until next Wednesday night and I'm looking forward to seeing lots of people that I love and miss.

If you don't hear from me, I wish the best of holidays to all of you. Drink eggnog, open gifts, and enjoy the company of your friends and family.

It's a Rainy Day

Posted on: Monday, December 17, 2012


Yesterday was a rainy day in Philly and I got all cozy for a little brunch and shopping in Old City.


Under all the winter wear I decided to break out my new Fred Perry sweater. It's really soft and naturally I'm pretty in love with it.


I'm totally smitten over these new boots from Cat Footwear. I had no idea that they made non-work wear and was pretty shocked when they sent me an email about their products. I'm overly impressed by the quality of these boots and I love their versatility. The front buckle strap (is that the correct terminology?) snaps off and they can be worn as regular red boots! They're a fun statement boot, no doubt!


I love big scarves and last year I bought this exact same style (but in black) at the Urban Outfitters Surplus in Chicago. Once winter rolled around, I decided to pick it up in cream and grey as well. It's the comfiest eternity scarf ever! I was pretty happy to find out tonight that it comes in even more colors this season — definitely going to get the green one!

Only a few days until Chicago and I am pumped!

Double Cable Knit Eternity Scarf, Urban Outfitters
Military Jacket, Vintage
Rose Leggings, Urban Outfitters
Shontelle Bridgetown Boots, c/o Cat Footwear
Sheer button up, UO Surplus
Fred Perry Sweater, Fred Perry Surplus
BDG Briefcase Envelope Satchel, URBN Sample Sale

4ARTISTS1CAUSE Benefit // NYC

Posted on: Sunday, December 16, 2012


On Friday I had the privilege of attending the 4ARTISTS1CAUSE event at Terminal 5 in NYC. For those of you not familiar with the event, some really wonderful people got together to help raise money for the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City in support of Hurricane Sandy Relief.

Aside from the fact that I love Grizzly Bear, it was fantastic to see Sleigh Bells, The Antlers, Cults, Converse, Fader, Urban Outfitters, Bowery Presents, and Terminal 5 all get together for a great cause. We sold out Terminal 5 and collectively raised ~$300,000 for the benefit.

Weekstagram // December 15

Posted on: Saturday, December 15, 2012


I had two trips to NYC this week and next week I'm headed home to Chicago. What a crazy, beautiful time.

  • Met this amazing shop dog at Sazz Vintage.
  • Thrifted an incredible holiday cat shirt. 
  • Vegan grilled cheese from the work cafeteria.
  • $25 train tickets to NYC? Don't mind if I do. Lou and I spent the day there on Tuesday and had lots of fun!
  • Some mornings it would be nice to stay in bed a bit longer.
  • Amy Winehouse love.
  • Ladies at the URBN Holiday Party! What a good time :)
  • Tonight I came across a restaurant named YOLO. It's out of business. Tons of irony here.
  • Silver legs. I love the metallic trend! Spice Force 5!
Follow Mini Penny on Instagram @Chaplinnn

Lost in New York

Posted on: Wednesday, December 12, 2012


I dunno, everyone. The more time I spend in New York, the more I realize that I'm kind of in love with it. My slow adjustment to Philadelphia was flipped around a bit today when I made the two hour train ride to NYC for some shopping and touristy things. This is only my second time in the Big Apple — last time I was there for work and didn't get to see much.


Step one to having a great day: if your roommate wants to borrow one of your bowties, let him. In fact, encourage it. Here's Lou looking snazzy in a polka dotted BDG bowtie I picked up at the URBN Sample Sale.


One of my main focuses of the trip was to hit up the Fred Perry store. Yep, nailed this one. Immediately upon arrival to NYC, we went to Soho and found it. It was love at first sight, naturally. I spent a decent amount of time browsing and ended up purchasing the one shirt that I really had my heart set on. Absolutely swoon.


Here's me being derpy on the streets of Soho and trying to act cool in front of the FP Store. Did it work? Okay.



Afterwards, we went to the nearest UO (well, we ended up at three total for the day). There are lots of cool things happening in our stores for the holidays and I wanted to see them first hand! Some totally great spaces and staffs in NY!


We stopped by Red Bamboo for vegan popcorn shrimp. This is highly recommended. I would I could have tasted the entire menu!



Post-lunch we went to Brooklyn for the Fred Perry Surplus. It was to die for. I ended up grabbing two pieces from an earlier Amy Winehouse collection (the Amy button up and the checkered polo) and a great basic black sweater for less than what the new Amy leopard polo cost. Whoa. They had some serious deals.


And of course I had to be a tourist. I stopped by 30 Rockafeller center to see if Kelley's cousin Aidy (who is now a cast member on SNL. So proud of her!) could get Seth Meyers' number for me. Just kidding. I just wanted to look cool and pose.


And I once heard that there is a big tree in Rockafeller center, so I thought I'd check it out. It was pretty cool for a big ol' tree, don't you think?


Before leaving, we stopped at the Apple Store in Grand Central Terminal to visit my friend Stan. I posted about him ages ago when we played around Columbus together. It was my first time seeing him since and it was wonderful! The Apple Store set up in the Terminal was actually really fascinating. I had no idea it was there!


So, NYC, thank you for such a great time. I'll be back again on Friday, but until then... stay wonderful.

Deena & Ozzy New Wave Leather Shoes, UO
BDG High Rise Twig Denim, UO
Samantha 113 Cardigan, Wood Wood
Striped Tank Top, Thrift
Leather Biker Coat, Zara
Black Beanie, UO
Belt with Gold Chain, URBN Sample Sale
Fish Necklace, Thrift
BDG Briefcase Envelope Satchel, URBN Sample Sale

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

Posted on: Monday, December 10, 2012


My mom's recipe for cookies is easily the best... ever. Okay, maybe I'm a little biased. But seriously, these are just perfect. I posted a vegan version of this recipe last summer and wanted to whip up a new batch (non-vegan, but super easy to swap out vegan ingredients!) using this organic honey I picked up at Terrain a few weeks ago. Recipe after the jump.

DIY "Ugly" Hanukkah Sweater

Posted on: Sunday, December 9, 2012

Say hello to Vanessa!
Everyone is all in a rage over Ugly Christmas Sweaters. They're funny, corny, and heck, who doesn't like a pom pom or two? Went I went on a search for Ugly Hanukkah Sweaters, however, I came up with very few results. The only once that came up in a search were $60+ — and they weren't even that great. I opted to make my own. Check out the full how-to after the jump.

Weekstagram // Dec 8

Posted on: Saturday, December 8, 2012


First day of Hanukkah, Christmas is on it's way and you know that Hanson's Snowed In is playing on my Spotify.

  • I have a new desk friend! Boo, of course.
  • PBRs at the work screening of A Love Letter For You.
  • Holiday trees at the office! I'm in love with these!
  • Quinoa-stuffed avocados for lunch.
  • Amazing new boots from Cat. Who knew that they made such lovely footwear? I can't wait to outfit these!
  • Boo helped me by taking my conference calls and replying to emails on my behalf. He's such a sweetie.
  • Holiday photos. More on this later...
  • Rosemary Gingerbread and Peppermint Hot Chocolate Ice Cream at Little Baby's. I really want to try to pizza ice cream!
  • Wine in a Griswold moose mug. Just because.
Follow Mini Penny on Instagram @chaplinnn

Friday Finds // Stanley Kubrick's Camera

Posted on: Friday, December 7, 2012

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia
Film is something that I've been disconnected from for a while. Don't get me wrong — I love it. I wish I had more time and patience to shoot it. I'm particularly feeling rather lustful after seeing these images shot by Stanley Kubrick of Chicago in 1949.

I should start out by saying that my original plan to go to San Diego just before Christmas has changed — I opted for a week in Chicago instead. I feel like it's a trip that I really need. My adjustment to Philly and my "new life" has been a rough one and stumbling upon this article via Lomography came at a perfect time.

Bite Beauty Lipstick and Sugar Lip Treatment

Posted on: Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Product images courtesy of Sephora
As mentioned in my November Review, I finally took the time to embrace Sephora this past week. I'm a big fan of Ulta, but there's a Sephora just a couple of train stops north of where I'm stay — hey, it's convenient and has so many wonderful samples. Despite not being a regular customer here, I have been signed up for their Beauty Insider program for a while.

On my birthday I got the standard yearly email with a free product. I was on a mission to find a nice wine/berry lipstick to gift to myself, so I figure I'd give them a whirl.


Bite Beauty Luminous Crème Lipstick — I actually almost bought the Lacȏme Rogue in Love. I ran into a really nice gal that follows me on Instagram and it turned out that she works for Bite Beauty. I love trying new products and am always intrigued by natural alternatives. What drew me into Bite was that, for one, the Mulberry color was spot on to Lacȏme's 391N. Secondly, the price point was virtually the same. And thirdly, Bite lipstick is free of synthetics, parabens, sulfates, and all of those other nasty things that we always get warned about. I have emailed Bite to find out whether or not they test on animals (and I'm crossing my fingers that they don't!) and am just waiting on a reply from them! You can also see me wearing this shade in my recent Good as Gold outfit post.

Fresh Sugar Kisses Mini Lip Duo — This was the birthday gift! These are really fantastic, soft, and smooth lip treatments. The Sugar and Rose came in the small set. While I think they smell great and are a perfectly fine balm, I don't see much different in my lips between this product and my Maybelline Baby Lips (a product that I love). The tint is nice and it was a gift, so I'm not complaining! But in the future I can't imagine spending $23 for a product that I don't see exceeding a drugstore brand I already own.

On my next trip to Sephora I'm hoping to test out OCC Lip Tars (ugh, finally!) and get a nice deep cocoa lipstick. Perhaps I'll spoil myself and go for the Givenchy in Racy Brown? We'll see...

Birthday Adventures

Posted on: Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Image courtesy of a weird DQ site. Hah.
I'm one of those people who normally celebrates my birthday all week. But, given the whole I-don't-have-any-friends-in-Philly-yet thing, Lou and I went to the museum and shopping. Duh.


For starters, Lou made me a veggie breakfast.


I mixed a nice berry lipstick out of three shades and went on a mission to have fun... and find a tube of raspberry lipstick (more on that later this week...).


We ended up at the Franklin Institute, where we saw the Titanic exhibit. This is my third go at it — I saw it in Chicago at the age of eleven and in Columbus at twenty-four. I love it, it's really quite fantastic. Lou and I didn't pass up the opportunity to touch a cherub's butt at the Grand Staircase photo op.



I couldn't resist a work pun.


And of course I walked trough a giant heart.

So now I'm twenty-six. Whoa. Let's see what the next year brings!

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