The Champagne Life on a DIY Budget Since 2007

TGWIF: Sweaters, Somerville + UNH Skating

goodwill irish fisherman sweater

Thank Goodwill It’s Friday! Last night, I flew home to the arctic tundra of Boston, and y’all: They ain’t lying. The struggle is real. Snow is EVERYWHERE. It’s well below freezing with the wind chill. Pretty sure it was zero degrees, not counting the wind, when I landed in Somerville just after sunset. I forgot about this cold — the kind of cold, as my great uncle used to say, that gets in your bones and doesn’t leave until Spring. This is the stuff that makes us tougher, the hardiness that underscores a New Englander’s steely nature, the stuff that makes us proud. Except this New Englander has gone soft, and fast, living in Texas, where 21 is about as cold as it gets — and even then, it’ll probably warm up to the 40s by noon. I was terrified to come home in the middle of yet another Snowpocalypse. Absolutely terrified.

Luckily, I found the most amazing and fortuitous ($4.99) score at the South Lamar Goodwill before leaving Austin: a pure lambswool vintage Irish fisherman’s sweater that is quite literally saving my life. It’s only been two winters since we moved from Boston to Austin, and already I forgot just how many layers it takes to protect yourself from the piercing wind and icy chill. Add a waffle knit long sleeve I found at the Goodwill Outlet a few months ago for $1, some brand-new fleece-lined leggings I also picked up at the South Lamar store for a few bucks, and my trusty SOREL Joan of Arctic Boots I splurged on back when I lived in Boston and we had a winter where we stopped counting snowfall in inches and started counting it in the number of Shaquille O’Neals. (Which, coincidentally was the winter that pushed me and Andrew over the edge and we decided to move to Austin. Thank you, winter of 2011.) Anyway, thanks to that lucky sweater, I was toasty warm walking down to one of my favorite neighborhood pubs last night for a welcome home dinner. Where I found your Vespa: it’s on Washington Street.

snowpocalypse somerville 2015 buried vespa

And I woke up to this scene out the window of my former apartment. The sun glistening off the ice dams while the whistling wind gently blows snow from the roof next door sets a serene scene, but don’t let it fool you: It’s cold. Damn cold.

snowpocalypse somerville 2015

The other thing that’s quite literally saving my life right now? The $1 pair of fleece adult-size feetsy pajamas that I found last week at the Goodwill Outlet. They have sugar skulls printed all over them. They kept me from freezing my ass off last night while I slept. I’m in love. Fingers crossed I survive the rest of the weekend!

goodwill outlet feetsy pajamas sugar skulls

Off now to the (eep!) 15-year reunion of my collegiate figure skating team, which I co-founded as a senior at UNH with my college bestie, who’s also flying into this madness from her home in Wyoming. Two New England girls gone west, now back east. Creating the UNH skating team with Annie was my first startup, and to this day is the one that’s dearest to my heart, and which makes me the most proud. It’s going to be the most special night ever tonight, sending the current team off to Nationals alongside Annie and a handful of other ladies from the original 1999-2000 roster, seeing how far the organization has come in a decade and a half. I will cry, no doubt about it. See you soon, New Hampshire! Currrently taking bets on whether we’re still tough enough for a nostalgic spin around the outdoor rink…what’s your over/under?

UNH synchro founding team 1999 2000