So I told you the Patreon was off for March (and
it is. It’s automatically set to go on hiatus, and Patreon assures me you will
not be charged, and, if it is, I will call and have it all refunded.) This is
because, in this year of me and Jill preparing to settle down and have a baby,
I am going to Europe. I’ll be gone between March 6th and March 31st.
Doc, that sounds like the worst possible way of
settling down. Let me explain. No, there is too much, let me sum up.
When I was a girl, going to Europe was my dream,
and it was a dream that was like going to the moon–I come from a relatively
poor background on both sides, particularly when I was young. No one in my
family had been to the east fucking coast when I was a girl, I saw the ocean
for the first time when I was 18 and only because I made it happen. But Europe,
you see, was never going to happen, no matter how many avenues I tried, I was
still a girl from the middle of nowhere who, regrettably had never been born
I was talking to my boss about how it was
something I’d always wanted to do before I had a baby, and I was sad that it
was pretty clear that wasn’t going to work out. Jill had wanted to send me, but
we just couldn’t make it work. It was a thing she really longed to do for me
before we had a baby, but the truck broke, and we need a new water heater–the
banal things of life. It was disappointing, but it was a dream I was going to
My boss is a complex man, a rich white dude who
nonetheless has a sense of compassion and generosity that occasionally strikes
like lightning. So he gave me the money for plane tickets, train tickets, and a
month off (unpaid). If you’re going to go once in your life, he said, try to
make it count. SO I AM. I was originally going to go by myself, as I don’t have
much trouble doing that, and actually enjoy a certain amount of solitude. I
live in my head a lot. But ever since my Mom divorced my Dad she’s had a pile
of money and weeks of vacation sitting there doing nothing, so I invited her to
come along, and I thought she was going to cry with excitement.
The Patreon has been an amazing help, and is
going to cover my bills while I’m gone. But since it’ll be off that month, and
for some of you who have always wanted to toss a couple bucks my way, but don’t
want the month to month thing, I decided to set something up specifically for
this trip. I want to add that I don’t expect anything–y’all have done enough
for me, frankly. And I’ll still be able to borrow money from Mom to make it
work, so you’re not ruining my life. Basically, I’m just asking you to help me
out with a lifelong dream I’m getting out of the way.
But there’s rewards! SHINY, FANTASTIC REWARDS.
I’m not just asking for money, I want to do stuff for it. And when I say any
character, I mean it. (Though, if I’m totally unfamiliar with even the
property, you’re taking your life into your own hands) Want a postcard from
Bill Cipher? PRETTY SURE I COULD KILL IT, ACTUALLY. A letter from Bastion? The
most soulful beep and boops you’ll ever read. Usagi goes to the Paris
Catacombs? DONE, WITH LOVE AND TENDERNESS.
So here’s the breakdown:
Any level: a
photo post thanking you personally with a picture of me doing the thing!
Tier One: a
postcard of the country, from either me or your favorite character! Mailed from
Tier Two: a
two page ficlet of your fav character experiencing whatever you got me, or a
two page letter from me about it. Mailed from Europe. Example of how I write
about food here.
Tier Three: I
buy you a small souvenir from said locale, and wrap it up with a letter from
your favorite character or me. Mailed upon my return, I can’t figure out the
post offices THAT well.
don’t do this, but if you want to, convo me first and we’ll work something out.
How to do this, if you want to:
Message me with what you want to sponsor and your email address. I’ll send you a request via paypal! And let me know which character(s) you’d like your letter/postcard from!
Again, I have no expectation of anyone doing
this, so no worries. I thank you anyhow! You’re all amazing. This is a dream I
never thought I would fulfill, and all of you have had no small part in making
it a reality. I wish I could tell you how much it means to me, and I look forward
to all the new shades of adventure we’ll have together.
Online Plus Size Shopping Guide for Super Cute Clothes
Notes: Everything contained herein is based on my own
personal shopping experiences, so YMMV. No one retailer is perfect for plus
size shopping, and not everyone’s taste aligns with mine, so please bear this
in mind. Right now, I am about a US size 16/18 or XL/2X depending on the
retailer, but I have bought online up to about a US 20. I have very chubby
arms, but my bust and waist are a lot smaller than my hips, so I tend to have
some trouble finding things that fit all over. Most retailers usually have a
plus cut, so there shouldn’t be a lot of discrepancy from my experiences for
sizes above US 22. I know this will not be all-inclusive, so please feel free
to add on whatever you think is helpful, because I know so many plus size
shoppers really, really struggle, so share your experiences and advice.
Notes pt 2: I don’t really shop at B&M plus size
retailers (like Lane Bryant, Torrid, Catherine’s, etc.) but I did work at
Avenue for a while, so I will just leave those retailers out. Again, if you
have a lot of experience with a particular plus size B&M retailer, join in
the conversation and add whatever you can that will help people shopping online
or in-store. The same goes for department stores, I do not ever shop in
department stores, so I have no experiences to add there.
Notes pt 3: If you are shopping exclusively online, please
try to get measurements so that you can compare that to size charts. Remember, there
is no standardization in sizing, and every company sizes a little differently,
so size charts are your friend. Plus, if you really fall in love with an item,
you could tell from the size chart if it could be altered to fit if you bought
a size up or something. (I know this is not an option for everyone, but it does
at least give the option for some.)
Notes pt 4: I won’t link to my Ebates account because I am
not trying to make money off of anyone, but if you don’t have it, SIGN UP NOW. It
is so easy to use, and you get money back for shopping. I’ll note below which
of these stores offers Ebates rewards.
-ModCloth. They offer sizes up to 4x, but their house brand
tends to be cut about a size larger. They have a decent size chart that allows
you to compare your own measurements. They also have a customer service live
chat, and if you tell them what item you’re looking at, they can almost always
get measurements for it so you can compare. (I have done this several times,
and it absolutely makes the shopping process a lot easier.) There are lots of
reviews and outfit photos from other shoppers, which also really helps if you’re
on the fence about something. They offer a lot of different styles, leaning
toward kitschy/cutesty/retro/vintage-inspired offerings. Shipping is moderate,
it usually takes about 10 days if you choose the free shipping option (if you
qualify.) BEST FOR: Unique dresses and a-line skirts. PRICE RANGE: moderate,
but quality is usually good. Most items will be between $40-$75, but it varies;
items in the sale section can be anywhere from about 30% to 60% off, so you can
get some GREAT deals in the sale section. SIZE RANGE: XS-4X. Does not offer
-eShakti. CUSTOM SIZING. Let me repeat: they do custom
sizing for their pieces. Plus, if you don’t like the sleeves, neckline,
embroidery, pockets (you heathen!), etc, you can alter. They have casual and
special occasion dresses and separates, all of which you can custom size. I can’t
emphasize this enough. If you’re looking for something for a special event, or
if you’re like me and a different size on top and bottom, this is your best
friend. They do charge a fee for customization, but it is worth it since it’s cheaper
than alteration. Sign up for their email list, they often do some good sales
where you can get a good deal. There’s a special discount for shopping on
mobile, too. They do offer free returns as well. NOTE: dresses are made as they
are ordered, so if you need it for a certain event or date, order as early as
you can, as it can take about 15 days to receive your items. BEST FOR:
workwear, special occasion dresses, jersey dresses for every day. PRICE RAGE:
the higher end of moderate, but the dresses are custom made when you order and
the quality is outstanding. Without a discount code, an uncustomized dress is
about $45-$70. SIZE RANGE: 0 to 36W. Yes, you read that right. And you can
customize ANY size. Does not offer Ebates rewards.
-Target.com. I know a lot of the stuff Target sells online
in its plus section is bullshit, but for basics, you can’t go wrong. The prices
are good, and the quality of the Merona t-shirts and cardigans is excellent for
what you’re paying. The Who What Wear line is a lot more fashionable and great
to wear to work, but be aware that everything runs about a size smaller. I do
not care for the Ava and Viv line, and I think I have only ever bought one pair
of shorts from that line, which I promptly returned. If you like Ava and Viv
good on you, it just doesn’t do it for me. You can return in-store if you buy
something online, and if you have the Target RedCard, you get 5% off and free
shipping on items from the website. It generally takes about 5-7 business days
for a package to come to me. BEST FOR: basics like cardigans and t-shirts; Who
What Wear for work, but pay close attention to sizing. PRICE RANGE: low,
especially if you pay close attention to sales and use the RedCard discount. Most
items average between $10 and $30 USD. SIZE RANGE: sizing for Ava and Viv and
Merona plus is X-4X (translating, according to the website, to roughly 14W to 30W.)
Sizing for Who What Wear is X-4X (where an X is probably about a straight-size
12/14, 1X is about 14W, and going up from there. All items I have from WWW are
sized smaller than the rest of the plus clothing at Target.) Does offer Ebates
rewards. *IMPORTANT EDIT: I just read that the Victoria Beckham line for Target will go up to size 3x, but odds are that the sizing will be more in line with WWW rather than Ava and Viv.*
-BooHoo. BooHoo is an online retailer based in the UK, so
make sure that you choose USD from the drop down at the top of the page, because
when you do, it also converts the sizing. They offer some workwear, but most of
their stuff trends toward casual or clubwear. If you want something on the
sexier side, BooHoo has you covered. In my mind they’re kind the UK answer to
Forever 21, but I think most of their stuff is cuter. Be careful, though,
because sometimes the quality isn’t quite what you’d expect. That said, they do
a TON of good sales, it is quite easy to get many things from their site for
not a lot of money. Like F21, they too have cute, cheap, trendy accessories as
well. Even coming from overseas, they ship very fast, and I haven’t ever waited
too long for a package from them. BEST FOR: trendy pieces, experimenting with
your look, clothes for going out and partying down. PRICE RANGE: comparable to
Forever 21, so pretty low, with some nicer items going into moderate, but they
do offer a lot of codes. SIZE RANGE: US 12-24. (The dresses I have bought from
there seem pretty true to size, but I have not bought any bottoms, so I can’t
speak to their pants sizing.) Does offer Ebates rewards.
-ASOS. To me, ASOS is BooHoo’s grown up, more chic older
sister. They have an amazing variety, from workwear to club wear to casual to
formal. If your style is more eclectic or punky, you will definitely find
something you like here, but even if you trend super feminine, you will not be
at a loss. They also have a MEN’S PLUS SIZE section, which I only recently
discovered. I have not bought anything from this portion of the site, but even
knowing that it exists is helpful, and it looks like they offer staples, work
wear, and more trendy pieces there as well. Their accessories/shoes/beauty
sections are off the hook too, seriously; their accessories are amazing. They
also have basics (like leggings or tshirts) in multi-packs, so you can save
even more and stock up. Sizing can be hit or miss, since they carry a lot of
different brands (including some BooHoo items!!) but most items I have bought
have been true to the size chart that they provide. They do offer good codes
from time to time. Items ship from the UK, and it takes about 1.5 to 2 weeks to
reach the West Coast of the US. BEST FOR: a wide variety to choose from, pretty
dresses, fashionable casual wear. PRICE RANGE: moderate to high, depending on
the item and the occasion. They have good codes sometimes, and a great sale
section. Items can range anywhere from $20 to $200. SIZE RANGE: for Women’s
Curve & Plus it’s 14-26, but sizing can vary between brands. For Men’s Plus
Size, it is XL-XXXL (they offer measurements on the site, so you can convert. I
know jack all about men’s sizing, so I can’t really speak to how helpful this
is, but if someone knows more, please let me know.) Does offer Ebates rewards.
Love/hate category (AKA I don’t often shop there, but if I
see something I like I will buy it):
-Forever 21. We all know this one, and probably a lot of us
hate it a little bit too. I have some awesome things from F21 that I really
enjoy, but I have gotten some stuff from there that I straight up hate. Also,
their Plus section is ridiculously priced compared to the rest of the site.
Like if you advertise $2 camis, make the fucking Plus ones $2 too. They do make
some cute stuff, and if you’re familiar with how their sizing works, you can
probably get pretty lucky and score some cute things. With how popular the
website is, you do have to pull the trigger pretty quickly, or you might miss
out. A lot of cute stuff goes out of stock and never comes back. Of course,
there’s also the accessories and the beauty sections, so you can find cute
stuff to pile into your cart to meet the free shipping minimum. You can return
in store if you buy online, but for me at least, going into a Forever 21 store
is a very trying experience in every single way. Sometimes the sizing is way
off, so read reviews if you can; I find that the sizing is especially weird for
the “deals” items that tend to be very inexpensive. Also, the non-stretchy tops
just aren’t made for fat arms. PRICE RANGE: low to moderate. Items are anywhere
from about $10 to $40. BEST FOR: dresses and skirts, shirts with lots of words
on them. SIZE RANGE: 1X-4X. Does offer Ebates rewards.
-Simply Be. They have some cute shit, but I don’t often find
things there that I need.They have a lot of casual and workwear, and some
pretty dresses. I have found that the sizing is pretty good, but always check
the size chart as this is another UK brand. They really push their store credit
card, which does have some rewards, but also a super high APR. (They took a
line out of the Avenue/Torrid/Lane Bryant/Catherine’s book by trying to create
customer loyalty with the card. I won’t get into a rant here, but unless you
plan on shopping ONLY at that one store, then don’t get the card.) PRICE RANGE:
moderate to high. Items are in the $40 to $100 range. BEST FOR: I can’t really
say since I haven’t shopped here a ton. SIZE RANGE: 6 to 28. Does offer Ebates
-Eloquii. They make beautiful clothes, but every time I work
up the nerve to buy something, it is sold out. They’re like a cooler, more
fashion-forward version of Lane Bryant in my mind. They do a lot of really
gorgeous workwear, but some more casual pieces as well. They’re known for their
Kady cigarette pants, which they offer in a variety of colors and patterns. In
my opinion, they’re a lot more daring with their cuts than a lot of other plus
retailers, and now they offer Plus Petite and Viola Fit (which is for bodies
like mine that are smaller on top with wider hips.)Their prices are high, but
they offer a lot of different sales and they usually have a pretty good sale
section as well. PRICE RANGE: moderate to high, depending on if there is a
sale. BEST FOR: workwear, vibrant colors, pretty dresses that are unique. SIZE
RANGE: 14-28 in Original, Petite, and Viola. Does offer Ebates rewards.
The point of a co-ed dorm
was so that you could live with opposite genders on the same floor. Not in the same room. However, my female roommate
wanted to move in with her boyfriend, who just so happened to by my best friend
Dean’s roommate. I was pleased to find out he was moving in with me. Without
notifying anyone in the rest of the building, Dean carried all his belongings
to my dorm and glanced at my old roommate’s bed.
roomie.” He smirked. I stood up and pushed my books back to run over to him and
wrap my arms around his neck.
get to see me even more now.” He smiled holding me tight before releasing his
grip a moment later.
not complaining.” I responded.
Dean and I have known
each other since pre-school. We just so happened to end up going to the same
school the rest of our lives. We were always with the same teachers until high
school. We had a few of the same classes but our schedules would be a bit off. He
lifted his suitcase up on the bed and threw his book bag and duffle bag on the
bed as well, his pillow, blanket and sheets tucked under his arm.
“Let’s make your bed
first.” I said grabbing his things and moving them to my bed. He nodded and ran
his hands through his hair. It was naturally standing up but when he ran his
hands through it, it looked a little more ruffled. The scruff on his face
complimented him more than any other guy I have met. We spread out the sheets
and he took one of the corners.
goes this way.” He said beginning to tuck one of the corners in.
Dean, flip it.” I said.
pretty sure I’m right, sweetheart.” He said. I stood back and crossed my arms
across my chest.
Go ahead.” I said. My confidence suddenly worried him as he second guessed
himself and realized I was right.
sorry.” He said removing the corner he had placed. I rolled my eyes and took
the other end helping him make the bed. He threw his pillow on top and his
blanket before looking over at the closet in the wall. “Is that all you’re
hanging?” he asked noticing the only thing I had in the closet was my “Special
all my things are in the dresser.” I replied returning his bags to his bed
before climbing back in mine.
are you so focused on already? It’s only the second day of classes.”
he already gave me notes.” I frowned flipping through my textbook.
“Sucks.” He responded
pulling out shirts and hanging them up.
“Yep. Do you have
anything yet?” I asked.
“For someone who hasn’t
decided on a major, hell yeah.” He responded.
“That stupid earth
science or whatever.” He shrugged. I laughed at his irritation and looked at
the TV to see an amber alert flash across the screen. “Damn.” He frowned at the
screen. I nodded and turned it off. “Do you work today?” he asked in attempt to
change the sudden sad emotion vibrating through the room.
“Um, yeah for a little
bit.” I sighed. I worked at the University Library. I put back books, checked
people out, and upkept the place.
“I might go with you.” He
responded as he finished up hanging his clothes and put his bags on the floor
of the closet.
“Okay. It would be nice
to have someone to talk to.” I said. He leaned back on his bed, but looked at
me with something clouding his eyes. I ignored it knowing how he can get a
little moody. He reached for his phone suddenly that I could hear was
“It’s Karlie.” He said. I
nodded knowing that his recent girlfriend was extremely demanding. He asked me
for my opinion on her after a group outing and in all honesty, I felt he could
do a whole hell of a lot better, but he thought that I was just being too harsh
for only knowing her for one day. However, the longer they’ve been together,
the more unhappier Dean was. And he was beginning to notice. “What?” he
answered the phone pulling me out of my thoughts. Dean was one of the sweetest
guys you could ever meet, and him answering the phone like that never happened
in my nineteen years of knowing him. “Give me like a half-hour.” He responded.
I furrowed my eyebrows as he hung up, threw his phone on his bed, and sat down.
“Half hour?” I asked.
“She wants me to come
“Dean… her house is
literally around the block…”
“I have to prepare myself
for her insanity.” He sighed getting back up and sitting on my bed.
“If you’re this unhappy
then why don’t you end it?”
“Daddy’s got big bucks.”
He winked. I grabbed my pillow and hit him with it. He laughed and put his
hands up in surrender. “I’m joking! I just… I don’t want to hurt her.” He
“Dean, she orders you
around! Did she ask you to come over? Or did she tell you to get over there.”
“She told me.” He
“Exactly. That’s not what
you want. You want to be in control. Be a man, not a wussy.” I teased.
“I’m not a-,”
“Prove it.” I said.
“Okay.” He nodded and
stood back up walking over to his bed and picking up his phone.
“Break-up in person, not
over the phone.” I sighed as I highlighted a line in my textbook.
“Dammit.” He sighed. He
grabbed his keys and left the room.