5/1/16

We All Scream Thinking About 13


Dear Pussycats,

Very recently my amazing friend Hannah had her 23 birthday party which was themed “Hot Mitzvah: The 10 year anniversary of my Bat Mitzvah.” Being that I am also 23 I was shocked, has it really been 10 whole years since we’ve turned 13?

In honor of commemorating our 10-year anniversaries of being thirteen, here are few cringe-worthy stories that all lead up to where I am today:

My Teen Modeling/Acting Career

When I was 13 I decided I wanted to be an actress/model/superstar-of-the-world, (aka Hilary Duff). I once read somewhere that Eva Mendez got scouted while sitting on her stoop, so I of course knew this would be my shot. I thought it would be a great idea to catwalk and strike poses every time I walked my dog outside on the off chance a casting director would drive by and discover me. Safe to say that didn’t work.

My next step was begging my mom to get me acting classes.

After binge watching marathons of America’s Next Top Model and a month full of very expensive acting classes, the next thing I know I was signed with a local acting/modeling agency. I even have these cringe worthy head shots to show for it.


While I do believe my love of acting has graduated me into the 1% of the world who isn’t afraid of public speaking, my acting career was doomed from the start. The highlight of this time in my life was booking a mall fashion show, and my lowest time was sobbing during my first and only acting audition because I studied the lines for the wrong part and felt like I let myself and Hilary Duff down. I always wonder if that horrible, horrible audition tape is out there but the world will never know!


The Time I Catfished My Best Friend and Myself

The next one is a bit of a doozy. When I was 13, I loved young adult fiction, specifically devouring all of the Princess Diaries books - Meg Cabot was my GIRL. And being the girl that I was with the rich fantasy life that I had, I made up this best friend named “Lily” and proceeded to catfish my real life best friend.

To paint this picture properly, my friend and I never had drama, she is calm, cool, extremely smart and is still one of my best friends to this day.  But I was bored, and hoping for a tween-dream, Meg Cabot life! 

Now this was before “catfishing” was even a thing. But I made up a fake email address and would email my best friend messages from “Lily” this fake friend who was coincidentally exactly like Mia Thermapolis and brag about all the fun we had during the summer or whatever, living out my Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants dream fantasy.

The email correspondence probably lasted like 3 emails because I got bored. But when I think about how stupid this was, I cringe! Especially because this was just a dramatic attempt to seem cool. And the worst part is that my best friend at the time probably thought I was already pretty cool, I mean, I did turn my old jeans into a handbag and had Snake on my Nokia brick phone.


Then of course, The Two Times I tried Witchcraft.

The same best friend and I practically spent every waking moment together during our three years in middle school.

One day at her house after school we were flipping through the channels (this was pre-Netflix days, aka a world I try not to remember) and we landed on the Tyra Show (RIP). In true Tyra fashion, she had a witch on the show who taught the audience a love spell.  Our tiny 13-year-old faces were glued to the TV.

Apparently you were supposed to take a paper bag and write all the qualities of your future boo and then melt a candle on it while thinking really hard about it. My list of qualities probably included: “As hot as Nick Jonas,” “can play guitar,” “super funny,” lol.

Safe to say we did the spell and anxiously waited for…. Absolutely nothing. I would still have to wait another 3 years before my first kiss.

But that didn’t stop me.

With another group of friends during a sleepover we busted out the Ouija board. I asked the mystical Ouija master in the sky (aka Lucifer), what my future boyfriend’s name is. We all concentrated really hard and lead the tiny triangular shaped piece across the board and we spelled out the name Shawn Landers.

I crept Myspace for a couple months for any Shawn Landers in Hawaii and asked everyone at school if anyone knew a Shawn Landers but came up with nothing.

What a huge disappointment Ouija! WTF!

………………

13 was one of the rockiest years of my life, it marked the very beginning of my hormonal teenage years, and was the first year where I asked myself the tough questions like “am I hot?” It was also the first year where I starting comparing myself to others, tragically flat-ironing my hair, and feeling the need to start acting a certain way (and I quote, ”Mom I’m THIRTEEN”). But what’s most hilarious is that even though I’m 23-years-old now, I think I’m more like my 13-year-old self than ever.

I’m the first to admit that I was a fantastic 13-year-old. Reflecting on these stories of my past are enough to know that the best part about being thirteen is all these silly mistakes you make and how you roll with the ridiculously steep learning curve.

I think about all the time I would spend absorbing Teen Vogue and Elle Girl (RIP Elle Girl) magazines while half-paying attention to Degrassi on my twin size bed and dreaming of my own Seth Cohen boyfriend. Iwould obsessively collect every Ked advertisement with the adorable Mischa Barton and recreate the outfits she wore because she was the quintessence of teenage cool. And I would sigh to myself as another day went by without having my first kiss.

I truly pined for a life outside my tiny room and tiny all-girls school just like all the best 13 year olds on television and in real life would. I hoped I would wake up the next morning with big boobs, no braces, a boyfriend and a dreamy life full of Frappucinos, a posse of girlfriends, a bedazzled t-mobile sidekick and all the Paul Frank t-shirts I could ever want!

As I grew older, I tried to abandoned my thirteen year old image, which subsequently meant giving up pop-music, pink velour, lip gloss and teen dramas, because once I turned 16, I was waaaaay “too cool” for any of that stuff.  It seemed like every year of my teen life and even into my college days revolved around different phases and obsessions that continued to push myself and my image as far away from my derpy, insecure 13 year old self as I could be. However, after 7 or 8 full years of this, I feel like now I’ve finally embraced 13-year-old me because it is my truest self.

I feel like one of those Russian nesting dolls containing different versions of myself inside. 13 year old me was dramatic, said how she felt when she felt it, was unembarrassed of liking things she liked. She dreamed of perfection and she was so hard on herself, and anxious before she even knew what anxiety was and just wanted to be happy.

While I still feel like this many days, I realize I’m now a moderately tolerable version of 13-year-old self, because I’ve built up armor to protect myself. This armor is made from years of experience, embarrassment, falling on my face and a series of little victories that got me where I am today.

I still wish people liked me, I’m still really hard on myself and I still get very anxious that my life isn’t perfect or that I’m not doing as well as my peers. But just like my thirteen-year-old self, I’m not afraid to like the things I like and feel what I feel and be who I am. I also look at the life I’ve carved out for myself 10 years later, and I think 13-year-old Caelan would be pretty proud.

I’m living in New York, I have my own studio apartment, my boyfriend is snarky, Jewish and has great music taste, I have a fabulous collection of phone cases and I treat myself to Almond-milk Ice Lattes way more than I’d like to admit -  all I need are more Paul Frank shirts and I’m set.



What were you like as a 13-year-old?

Can you believe it's been a whole 10 years since we would match our braces rubber band colors to our moods?

Keep it Sassy,
xoxox
Caelan

4/24/16

How I Woke Kurt Cobains Spirit at Soul Cycle


I’m not the most athletic person.

When I say that I mean, I told my gym teacher in 7th grade that I had asthma so I wouldn’t have to run as many laps as everyone else. A lie I maintained all the way through my senior year in High School.  I’d quit just about every sport I ever played, and recently gave up my gym membership because I wasn’t going - even the allure of maybe seeing a glistening, t-shirted Michael Shannon once in awhile wasn’t enough.

And while I usually consider all the walking I do to and from subway stations in New York exercise - emerging from winter hibernation mode, I realized that I barely fit my favorite clothes and that maybe it was time to find an exercise that I don't totally hate. 

Every day on my way to and from the subway, I pass a SoulCycle. One day, I pressed my nose to the big glass windows and saw the hustle and bustle of young, yoga-fit moms wearing color coordinated Lululemon workout gear, and the super happy employees giving out water bottles and smiles. Blerg. Staring at these women made me low-key feel like I was that 7th grader again, sitting on the sidelines watching my classmates run without a care, while pretending to breathe asthmatically to avoid the wrath of my gym teacher. Despite these thoughts, I decided that this would be my starting point.

The morning arrived for my first class and after a cup of coffee and a banana, I slipped on my yoga pants, wore two sports bras because one can never be too prepared when it comes to booby-bounce - slicked my hair into a ponytail, and put on my converse (I need to get some grown up work-out shoes).

I skipped over to SoulCycle 15 minutes early, and was welcomed by the friendly staff. I will say, it felt a bit strange to be on the other side of the window. Suddenly, I was surrounded by the swarm of women with glowing skin, shiny hair - all of them looking like extras from a Shakeweight infomercial. I did notice that on the inside of SoulCycle the attendees seemed a bit more aggressive and less carefree, then what I imagined. Regardless, they all operated like a school of fish, going to their lockers, stretching and waiting patiently outside the class, all together, all in sync, yet not acknowledging each other at all.

The staff checked me in and gave me my first pair of cycling shoes. The cycling shoes were red and black vinyl with three pieces of Velcro to strap your feet in, and had these big scary, square metal plates on the bottom of the shoe. They looked like some kind of posh, prison-issued bowling shoes.

After I put my things in a locker and went up the stairs, I waited outside the class with the other women, while I awkwardly fumbled to put these shoes on without a proper place to sit. I apologized to two different people who bumped into me and without my cell phone for comfort I was left to wonder what women did before a Jazzercise class in 1995.

I was nervous that I was going to be the only stumbling noobie in the bunch, that I would get a side pain, or worse, that I would pass out mid-cycle and need the jaws of life to separate me from the machine to be later whisked away on a stretcher. But just as I began to plan my escape, the employees in matching yellow shirts opened the doors to this dark room that was blasting T-Pain’s “Bootywerk (One Cheek)” and motioned us to come inside.

Again, in unison, the participants moved to their bikes, adjusted them gracefully, and began cycling before the class had begun. It was apparent that I would not be leaving this machine for the next 45 minutes.

The class was illuminated with four huge burning candles in the front of the instructors’ bike and the red emergency EXIT sign. I did wonder if the candles were a fire hazard, but then I whispered to myself, “just go with it, Carol.” I call myself that in times of need.  

In walked this burly, bald, tattooed man in his late 40s. He was wearing a black do-rag and tiny gym shorts. He scanned the room, hopped on his bike and sorta screamed into his headset, “Brooklyn, are you ready to rock?!”

I was a bit scared, but my adrenaline started pumping once he began the class with Nirvana’s “Smells like Teen Spirit.”

He proceeded to play a very diverse playlist of the Killers, Nirvana, Eminem and some old Motown jams, while coaching us on different cycling positions - who knew there were so many ways to
sit on a bike? 

Everyone in the class hooted and hollered as he told us to turn up the resistance (I never did figure out how to do that), while bopping their bodies and swinging their perfect ponys to the beat, their legs
cycling at warp speed. I don’t know if I’m extremely rhythmically challenged or if I was just that new, but everyone seemed to know what they were doing except for me. And how did all of those women know all the words to Eminem’s B-sides?

What got me through the class were five parts adrenaline, and two parts constantly contemplating if the class was half an hour or an hour.

Towards the latter half of the class, our instructor proceeded to extinguish the candle flames by whipping his tiny towel above the candles. When there was one candle still lit, he proceeded to pick it up and take it to a beautiful girl in the front of the class, and he said to her “blow it out, baby.” At that moment, I wondered if I was participating in a cult-like séance trying to bring Kurt Cobain back from the dead through the power of synchronized cycling.

My face was beet red and I was drenched like the winner of a wet t-shirt contest I never entered. But there was something really liberating about this experience. Loud music forced me to get outside of my head, the dark lights allowed me to get outside of my body, and the cherry on top was that no one was giving me judgey gym-eyes.

Also, my feet physically strapped into my machine was a great incentive to not give up after 20 minutes like I normally do on an elliptical machine. I didn’t even want to totally die when they made
us do the Macarena, while cycling, with 3-pound weights (okay it wasn’t actually the Macarena, but I don’t know how else to describe it).

Once the class was over, I followed everyone in the room in touching palms and bending at the waist in a bow, as he said some sort of weird Soul Cycle mantra that might as well have been“Namaste, bitches.”

Then the large door swung open and I wanted to hiss like a vampire when light filled the room.

“What just happened?” I wondered to myself as my jelly-legs led me one foot in front of the other to my locker and out the door into the crisp spring air. 

Whatever it was that just happened, I realized that I wanted to do it again. And somehow I knew, something awoke inside me. I think it was the spirit of Kurt. 

I have my next session booked.



Have you ever been to Soul Cycle?
Have you ever joined a cult?
Tell me about it in the comments down below!

Keep it Sassy,
xoxo
Caelan

4/18/16

12 Questions I Need Answered!


Dear Pussycats,

I feel like blogs are supposed to be this thing where you give advice and are really certain about everything you're talking about. But in my early adulthood I've realized that I don't know anything about a lot of stuff, so here are a few questions I'd like answered and if any of you have advice, please send it my way.

1) How do I actually conceal the dark circles I've had under my eyes since I was born (I came out of the womb exhausted)?

2) How does anyone afford to live in Manhattan?

3) How does anyone make time to write or do something they love, work out and have a full time job?

4) How do I learn to love myself if I'm hyper paranoid that everyone low-key hates me?

5) Why does my FOMO make me so saaaaaad, when I don't even like doing things most times?

6) Does anyone else fall asleep to Netflix so they don't have to be alone with their sad-nighttime thoughts? Also does anyone watch specifically 30 Rock for this purpose?

7) Why does writing, the thing I love the most, give me SUCH anxiety sometimes?

8) How do I get Zayn to love me when I'm not Gigi Hadid?

9) Does anyone else feel like they have the anxiety of a perfectionist, but lacking any other perfectionist tendencies, i.e. being thorough and actually reading emails in their entirety?

10) Can you spell the words: expierence, throughough, and definetly on the first try?

11) How bad does a period stain have to be to throw out a pair of jeans that you bought three years ago but spent over $400 on? (I used to be bougie)

12) How do you make kale taste good?

Let me know if you have any answers to these questions!

Have a great night Pussycats

and PLEASE keep it sassy,

xoxo
Caelan

2/29/16

Spring Cleaning, Hawaii Dreaming!

Dear Pussycats,

Living in New York, I find it really difficult to make time for work and...well anything else! But instead of trying to accomplish a million things during my vacation week back home, I relaxed and prioritized the important stuff. I hung out with my momma, ate a lot of delicious food, watch a ton of Real Housewives and I cleaned my high school bedroom. 

Every morning as the early sunlight would trickle into my teen-girl bedroom, my mamma and I would come in, after a cup of coffee and some deep morning conversation of course, and get to work. 

With each binder full of random school stuff, itchy or XS sweaters, and every partner-less earring that I threw out, the better I felt. Going through each of these possessions that I once deemed as important, and throwing them out - filling up trash bag after trash bag with memories, momentos and mmgarbage, I felt like I was leaving my past behind and moving forward. 

In another effort of spring cleaning, I deleted my Facebook, and honestly, it was even more liberating than throwing out all the uncompleted diaries of mine. 

In some ways, this blog is sort of like one of those diaries that I would start and stop. But this one, I've actually sort of, committed to for 5 years now, which is pretty cool.

Now that I'm back in New York, with a full love-tank and about 15 new freckles on my face, I thought that I would be great to prioritize the things that matter to me again, and one of them, is blogging, and of course fashion.

Since I barely documented being back home, check out my instagram for my humble brag Hawaii photos. But for now, here is Brooklyn!




Some guys asked Mark and I if we wanted a photo together, to which I replied "no," lol. Also no shade Mama, but Mark is coming for you as my photographer extraordinare!


Outfit details: Coat: J.Crew, Dress: Fighting Eel, Hat: J.Crew, Purse: Rebecca Minkoff, Shoes: Sam Edleman 



And that is all for now folks!

Who is your favorite housewife? Let me know down below
and until then
Keep it sassy,
xoxo
Caelan

2/3/16

A Chocolate Covered, 14-day Build Up to the BEST DAY EVER!


“Mama, is today my birthday?” I remember asking my mother that question as a four-year-old with sad floppy pigtails and a permanent kool-aid mustache.

She got down on my level and shook her head, “no honey, it’s July, you have a long time to wait.”

…..fuck

I countered with “but wait, is tomorrow my birthday?”…It was safe to assume I was setting myself up for more disappointment… was she going to tell me the tooth fairy wasn’t real next?...smh.

As a small child, I had a really hard time understanding the days of the week, how to tie your shoes without two bunnies ears and the concept that your birthday is only one day a year.

I wanted every day to be my birthday, because who doesn’t want cake, attention and presents, EVERY SINGLE DAY.

And unlike the average bear, I have a beautiful, heart-filled, chocolate covered, fourteen-day build up to my favorite day. Not to mention that my special day ALWAYS falls on a three-day-weekend.

I mean, February 16th is the ultimate birthday.  I think everyone can agree that if their birthday was February 16th, they’d be a birthday person too.

I love the fact that our consumerist-driven society starts celebrating Valentines Day on January 2nd, because it means the lovey-dovey build-up to my birthday is only greater and longer.

I get so frustrated with anti-valentines day people, because I take personal offense that they are hating on my birthday month and my general style aesthetic. I’m also offended, because I am the human-personification of Valentines Day.

I know that technically Saint Valentine is the human personification of Valentines day, but hear me out, I commit my life to this shit.

I am a fan of snail mail, hearts are my favorite shape, I wear pink on the daily, talk about love constantly, and eat empty, sweet calories like it’s my day-job.

In a “chicken or the egg” type conundrum, I always wonder if the fact that my birthday is so close to Valentines day effects my love for it, which is reflected in my style and general disposition, or if it’s some sort of reverse. 

I’ve written over 30 Valentines Day related articles on this blog, and I can honestly say I’ve only been taken for two of those years. That means that my love of Valentines Day itself is greater than my love for a romantic partner.

What’s funny to me is that people paint Valentines Day to be this all-or-nothing sort of deal. Either you are in a Nicholas Sparks wet dream, or you are crying eating chocolate in your sweatpants, and I say, WHY CAN’T YOU HAVE BOTH?

I don’t see why you couldn’t wear sweatpants and cry with your boyfriend? Or take yourself on a solo horse-drawn carriage around Central Park!

Valentines Day has shitty stigma because people make it that way. You are not a loser if you don’t have a date, and you aren’t the hottest thing since Hot Pockets if you do have one!

My point here is that my love of Valentines Day and my birthday run deeper than my love of almost anything. And while you’re entitled to your own opinion about the holiday, I truly think there is something much worse than being single on valentines day, and that is, getting a papercut while making a valentine for your hot, married teacher.


I don't really know if this article has a clear point. But what I want is to ask you to join me in my celebration! Lets talk about things we love, love itself and our love of being sad, throughout this entire month!

Who is with me?

xoxo
Caelan

1/18/16

Looking for Submissions + Contributors!

Dear Pussycats,

I've been beating myself up a lot lately because of my lack of content on this blog, and my lack of content to create.

I felt like I hit a wall. But you know what? It's okay! I'm only human, and it's okay to take some time off and to ask for some help!

I had an amazing brainstorming session with my AMAZING friend Candy about what I want to do with my blog and we came up with a few ideas.

1) I think I need to take a little bit of time off - nothing crazy, probably just the rest of the the month. But I want to take some time to actually write a bunch of stuff so that you can start expecting more regular content!

2) I WANT CONTRIBUTORS! I love the idea of having regular contributors, maybe just a handful of people that also love to write about their feelings and things they love as much as I do!
I can't choose everyone, but if you're interested please contact me through the button on the side of this blog.
Include your name, age, favorite pastry and a 500-word writing sample!

3) V-day submissions
If you don't think you can handle regular monthly contributions, but are interested in celebrating my FAVORITE holiday with me next month, please feel free to contact me with an idea and we can brainstorm!

Thats all for now, pussycats! Thanks for being so patient with me throughout my whole 5 years of blogging!

See you next month pussycats!
xoxo
Caelan

1/11/16

Disposable Diaries: Jenny Lewis Fall '14

Dear Pussycats,

For this #DisposableDiary entry, I need to tell you about my most religious experience ever - the time I saw Jenny Lewis live.

I first encountered Jenny Lewis in the film Troop Beverly Hills, which, lets be real is TOTAL aesthetic goals. Not only was I a Daisy (didn't quite make it to Girl Scout) but also I share a deep love of uniform inspired fashion, cookies, and of course, diamonds! This movie was such #goals for me as a small child, and to this day I look to this film for fashion inspo, guidance and strength when the going gets super tough.

Then, during my 90's-revival, Pacific North West-Indie band phase of high school, I discovered Rilo Kiley.

I was listening to a mix-tape my internet pen-pal Kimberly made me while driving home in my mothers, old, beige, station wagon after seeing a friend. I was cutting through the Ko'olau mountains, and it was one of those afternoons where it had just rained and the clouds hung so low it felt like I was driving through them. Through these puffy clouds were pierced with streams of light and the beginning of "Arms Out Stretched" began, and everything changed for me.

Rilo Kiley's music saved my life in more way thanks one. In fact, I wrote an article all about how much they've saved me on this very blog in 2013, click here. Rilo Kiley and Jenny Lewis's music has been the soundtrack throughout my life since first discovery.

16-year-old day-dreamer Caelan never thought she would ever move to New York, or would have maintained this blog for 5 years, or would ever see Jenny Lewis live. But 21-year-old Caelan made it happen.

My amazing friend Misha extended the invite and I of course said, "HECK YES." Misha and I scurried after work, wearing our ginormous rabbit fur coats, big hats, and huge beers in hand...we were ready.

We bought matching sparkly, gold "Voyager" necklaces from the merch booth and busted our way into the front row. Misha has this amazing way of cutting through a crowd, and surely enough we were front and center.


The crowd was annoying and didn't seem to want to put up with Misha and my dancing, but who cares! Our goddess was right in front of us!!

Her firry locks were as shiny as I imagined and her voice was even more than I could've ever imagined.

She played every song that I blasted in my teen bedroom, songs that I listened to while I was getting my wisdom teeth removed, and every song off my NY subway playlist. I was overwhelmed with nostalgia, but it was also one of the most present moments of my life.

Seeing Jenny Lewis live was one of the first nights in New York that I really felt like I belonged here. And to vibe and connect with my ultimate queen and one of my dearest friends was a euphoric experience.

Misha and I danced and cried and gave no fucks about the total squares behind us. We gave into the music and into the night and it felt so liberating.

And pussycats, I have the opportunity to see this babe in concert again on February 4th! Also all these photos are from Misha!

Have you ever had a concert experience like this?
More importantly, have you ever seen Jenny Lewis in concert?

Keep it sassy,
xoxo
Caelan