10 February 2011

When I Grow Up

Top: Lands' End Canvas gingham poplin (worn here before - similar here)
Skirt: UO Cooperative zigzag
Tights: Anne Klein herringbone (worn here before - similar here)
Belt: H&M double buckle (worn here before - similar here or -ish here)
Shoes: Anthropologie Raines / Seychelles Ring in the New Year (worn here before - similar here)
Necklace: Anthropologie Grandma's Treasure Trove (worn here before - similar-ish here or here)

♦   ♦   ♦   ♦

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a tennis star - my dad has always been a recreational tennis player and during his rare free time when he wasn't out playing himself, would spend it watching Lendl and McEnroe duel it out. I tried so hard to emulate my dad that my mom still talks about a barely standing baby Lisa in diapers holding a big wooden tennis racket batting around a ball in the garden.

In elementary school, the wannabe stardom bug hit and my then-BFF and I spent afternoons trying out NKOTB dance moves and working up a routine we wanted to perform on the NYC subway platforms while waiting to be discovered. If only we could work up the nerve to actually do it.

Junior high emerged within me the future aviator - I would fly the F-14 Tomcat with my RIO in tow and we would go buzzing towers and dogfighting MiGs. Unfortunately the Tomcat was on its way to retirement and I had no sway to qualify for the Naval Academy.

Late high school saw a more serious me going through the motions of college preparation - a future cardiothoracic surgeon needed the extra credit to get into a good college and excellent medical school, so of course I spent my free time volunteering at hospitals and beefing up my poorly lacking math and science skills.

In college I wanted to do nothing more than write the great American novel. I took creative writing and even jourmalism to help fine tune my writing skills, and interned with a literary PR firm, boutique publishing company and then corporate travel magazine.

Close to graduation with the great big world looming, I felt like retreating - no need to battle the great concrete sidewalk, I would go to Door County and open a quaint B&B amongst the cherry orchards and summer fishing, spending my days baking and my evenings reading by the fire.

It's been years since college and reality has hit like a ton of bricks. I have a full time job now, real responsibilities, a live-in BF, a townhome, a new pup. But I'm still not sure what I want to be next.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up? Where do you see yourself in five or ten years from now?


  1. For a very brief period, I wanted to be a "mad scientist". I'm not sure what that meant: just that I wanted to be in a lab combining chemicals and not wanting them to explode, I guess.

    I've wanted to be a lawyer since 6th grade though. I was such a boring child! LOL

    I just got those shoes! I got the pewter/black suede version and LOVE THEM!

  2. I Love this outfit! The skirt is adorable! & I wanted to be a doctor...now I want to be a graphic designer, oh how times have changed :P

    - www.itsanewkate.blogspot.com

  3. I can't begin to tell you how amazing your outfit is today. I love the way you mix prints. love.

  4. I thought I wanted to be a teacher at one point, then perhaps a therapist, or work in broadcasting. The invitation for my 30 year class reunion just posted on Facebook, and that has gotten me thinking about all that I have yet to do.

  5. I always wanted to be a SAHM. I know, I know... TOTAL overachiever. Trying not to plan to far down the road because "if you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans"... Don't judge that I just quoted Woody Allen. Inspired to buy gingham since you rock it all the time.

  6. Wow, you are so well-rounded! Much more so than I. When I was younger, I wanted to dance. Now I have no rhythm. :) Then I wanted to sing, and while I still do that professionally, it's only seasonally and as a side job.

    I love this outfit on you! The pattern mixing is fantastic, the pop of color in the skirt is so pretty and I love the added fun in the sandals. You look fantastic!

  7. I wanted to be a ballerina/cashier at the grocery store 9I thought you could keep all the money). Glad neither of those dreams came true!

    I LOVE this outfit. So much.

  8. I didn't even read the post, I saw your outfit and I just skipped down to the comments. Now. I've been reading fashion blogs for a little while and I have realized that I am FAR from a fashionista. Very very far. And some of the time, I think the outfits I see on various blogs are over-the-top or a bit too loud. That being said, I LOVE THIS OUTFIT. I want it!


  9. thanks for sharing tid bits about you. and lol, I was a NKOTB fan too - Holla! And Lisa, I admire how you're so successful. If I were your mom, I'd be bursting w. pride; and I'm sure she is. As for me, I never imagined that I'd be working in a call center purgatory, but sometimes, life happens and you make changes that will benefit you and your family. I wanted to be a SAHM mom and still bring in some bacon, so I had to leave the job that I loved (tech writing) and pick hours at a call center. but overall, I'm still happy 'coz I get to watch my kids grow up. I am certainly not preaching this is for everyone, but it is what was best for me. where I imagine myself in 5-10 years? hopefully no longer in a call center, lol.

  10. Love your outfit! What a great skirt!

    Like you, I have gone through many, many phases in terms of "what I want to be". It has changed and evolved throughout the years. I have been in my current position for around 6 years now and I'm starting to feel bored and like it's time to move on to whatever is next!

  11. When I was younger, I wanted to be the President of the United STates. Then I decided I didn't really like public speaking, so...the next logical choice was architect. But I had a bad experience with a physics teacher in middle school, so I decided not to take physics in high school or college (guess I was pretty traumatized, huh?). During college I oscillated between professor, high school teacher, and lawyer...none of which I'm doing!
    And it's a shame I have terrible vision, because I think I would love to be a pilot.

    Love all these pictures. And your heels work so perfectly with the outfit!

  12. I want to be....wearing that skirt! LOVE IT TO PIECES! So cute! You look great and I loved reading your journey so far!

  13. I wanted to be a surgeon! Then I became a chemist - looks like the only think I really wanted was to wear a lab coat!

    Love your outfit, especially the shoes!

  14. I really wanted to be a hollywood screen writer because I have books full of just random stuff I'd write. But of course, I'm not there! Haha. In the next 5-10 years, the first thing I want to be is a good mom and then a wedding photographer. :) I loved getting to know you a little. Not to mention, you and Dea and Pamela are all making me want that shirt!

  15. Surgeon! But then I came to US and those medical terms in English ate me alive....

  16. Love the mix of patterns here! It was fun reading more about you!

  17. I think self awareness hit really late in life for me. Sissy and I started our own wardrobe consulting business last year. It's not the "bread & bacon" job, but it seems to be the perfect choice for me.....now if I could only make some money at it! ;)

  18. I wanted to be a tennis star too. Except reality hit in high school. I was decent but after getting my butt whupped against nationally ranked girls? No way in hell :) Never been the brightest either in school so med school and law school were out. I guess you could say I set pretty low dreams for myself. It wasn't until I took a computer programming class did I realize, hey I'm good at this! And this is fun! did I know that's what I wanted to be when I grew up. I don't see much of a change in the next 5-10 years career-wise, but in my personal life? Get married and have kids? Pretty boring and typical goals :)

  19. When I was little I wanted to be an artist. Of course, being in a Chinese family, my grandma said I ought to be a pharmacist or lawyer and make lot's of money - isn't this super familiar or what? So after completing highschool, nursing was in high demand and paying well so I thought I'd go for it. Midway through upgrading my math I just knew it wasn't for me. I even dabbled with financial management - not for me. I then found myself back where I started - in the creative field. I am now a happy and proud graphic designer. No, I'm not rich but I make ends meet. Best of all, I love what I do. Hit me up if you need a graphic designer : )


  20. This is a great outfit! I love that you put in the extra detail of wearing herringbone tights to mimic the design on the skirt.

  21. I pretty much have always wanted to be a doctor. But I did go through a weird phase where I just wanted to act as a doctor. Seriously, I just wanted to play a doctor on TV. It was strange. Cute skirt, btw!

  22. Great post! First off, thanks for the travel well wishes.
    Secondly, I love your outfit here, especially those shoes!
    To answer, I wanted to be a doctor like my grandfather. I am an eye doctor and will probably still be practicing in the next 5-10 years unless I get the balls to finally become a pro photographer.

  23. First a teacher for the longest time, but then all I wanted to do was work in fashion. FIT was the dream, but I knew the chances of making it as a designer were slim to none. So I got myself a scholarship to a business school in Manhattan that would transfer my credits to FIT so I could first learn the business end and then indulge my creative side.
    I turned that scholarship down to stay here in the burbs with a boy.
    But if I hadn't I would have become the mother of the best boy ever....
    Thanks for sharing with us, I loved this post!

  24. What a great color/pattern mix, looks beautiful. I always wanted to b a teacher, and was one for 23 years. Now I would love to be a professional student, only taking courses that were interesting to me.

  25. O M G!!!!! I loves this outfit!!

    I still don't know when I'll be a grownup!! I wanted to be a pilot and then an actress, and then a hermit in the woods (I still would like that one!) and then wanted to run a bookstore, which I do, but I think I'd be happier without the responsibility!!

  26. WOW. This outfit is ah-mazing. I love how your mixed the prints here. Wow!!

    When I was little I bossed everyone around. Now I'm a teacher. That's not too far off base!!

  27. When i was little, i wanted to be a princess and live forever ever after with my prince charming.
    When i was in my teens, i wanted to be a designer, then, work in advertising. I then studied economics at uni, with a bit of pressure from my parents trying to get me in the corporate world for the $$$. Now, im none of these....although i have found my prince charming but alas we don't live in a grandiose castle :-)
    You look so cute in gingham Lisa! I love your outfit as always.

  28. When I was younger I ALWAYS wanted to work in the entertainment industry specifically wanted to work in TV and movies - luckily I was able to make my dream come true. :)

  29. Isn't it amazing how our goals, priorities, and meaning of life can change from year to year. Growth is an amazing thing. Another amazing thing is that B and W gingham blouse of yours Lisa. It must be just about the most versatile item in your closet. I see you use it in so many different ways. I would have never put checks and chevrons together. You make it work perfectly. And the red hemline of the skirt is the perfect amount of color. Black, White and Red. Hey! I was wearing that yesterday. Your photos are different and varied today. I see a change coming. I love it.

  30. Oh I love that outfit! I was just drooling over that skirt yesterday and can honestly say I would never have thought to mix prints like that! It looks awesome! When I was little I, no joke, wanted to be a librarian. Now I'm on my way to be a psychologist. Oh how time changes us!

  31. I wanted to be Cher. No, seriously!

    I love that skirt!

  32. I figured by now I'd be working at a design firm doing graphic design. Instead, I'm doing web content development. Not nearly as exciting. And no creative outlets at work. In the next 5 years, maybe I'll have a kid... and a different job?

    Melanie@Unravelled Threads
    Follow @UnraveldThreads on twitter!

  33. Oh wow, Lisa, this skirt is ADORABLE on you! Such a great buy from OU! You look so chic today mixing your patterns - totally makes me want to track down that Anthro skirt that looks so similar and try an outfit like this!

    I wanted to be a ton of things as a girl - a vet was the biggest thing, but then in high school I started singing. I was a theatre/voice major in college until I realized I couldn't take the heat! It's such an intense job. I did English instead!

  34. I LOVED your comments, ladies! This is truly fantastic reading about what you all wanted to be - and are still aspiring to be!

    Kathleen - I admire you for knowing what you wanted to do and chasing after it!

    Ashley / Lisa - I think nowaways we let career success define who we are as a person way too much. Actually I think my professional career has really stifled my creativity - I used to write, paint, have tons of hobbies, etc. And now? Le sigh. I have to keep reminding myself, "We're not just our jobs!"

    Jamie - when I was learning to fly, it was awesome except for the whole ground school part! And the worst thing? The more I learned, the more hesitant a pilot I became! Like hell, I could die in this thing!

    Callandra - that is awesome! You gals should promote it on your blog! You've got fantastic taste!

    Cee - oh I had a rude awakening for tennis in high school too! All those USTA and nationally ranked kids were kicking my butt - plus I wasn't having any fun anymore!

    Danielle C - I know exactly what you mean, girl! I was surprised that my parents supported me as an English major through college - for sure they wanted a doctor or lawyer or (ha) pharmacist in the family - something specialized and stable!

    Mugdha - you crack me up, seriously! You can be the "I only play a doctor on TV" gal! ;o)

    Lesa - I have a cousin who is a professional student! She's in her late 30s and working on her like 3rd or 4th doctorate!

    Carly - hey, do what you're good at. JK! ;o)

    vintageglammz - That's just be a smart girl! I had friends in college who majored in things like art history - which was awesome then, but one of them had to go back to school and do accounting so she could get a job, argh!

    Fashion Therapist - big jealous AWWW here! I give major props to anyone who is loving their job and living their dreams!

    Laura - I actually have to keep myself from buying more gingham this year because I keep gravitating towards it (and stripes!) I love this top too because I think it is technically navy blue, but it is dark enough to pass for blue or black depending on what I wear with it. To think, a year ago, there would've been no way I could have put this outfit together!

    Melanie - you've got the whole big world out in front of you! At my old job, we had a really creative graphic designer - unfortunately his real job was to be our webmaster, so not a lot of fun or creativity there. After a few years, he decided to strike out on his own and now runs a success financial tool web site for other young adults (something he started as a hobby!) and does freelance web and graphic design! There's hope yet!

    Mandy - I was an English major in college too! I ended up minoring in Journalism and Marketing though, because I figured that would at least help me get a job later on, because reading Jane Eyre probably wouldn't, haha!

  35. FIRST, this outfit is fantastic. It's kinda quirky & edgy with the pattern mixing but it is so chic, professional and flattering too. You've really got a winner here. I love it.
    And this post was really cool to read. Thanks for sharing so much about yourself your dreams!

    Hope that whatever comes next keeps a smile on your face!

    Leaving the House in THIS?!?!

  36. First I wanted to be a teacher, then a psychologist, now i'm in business/hr! Helping people is the main theme! HR stuff really thrills me, I'm such a nerd, so I hope to be doing that work in the future. A long way down the road, I'd love to own my own business!

  37. I love your pattern mixing in this outfit, you look so feminine and chic!


  38. Love your outfit and I wanted to be a teacher but right now I am university and I think I should be a research specialist... it's funny hos things change!!


  39. What a perfect bold pattern mix, I really love it. The colors and jewelry are so great too. Beautiful.

  40. so so great! i love a good dose of pattern mixing :)


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