Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Balancing Work & College

Homegirl has to have a job. I'm not in any position to be able to be unemployed during the semester, both financially and mentally. I don't do well when I'm not busy. I don't know how to explain it, but the less time I have to get things done, the more productive I become. If I know that I have a whole day to do something, I'm going to take the whole day to do that one thing. If I know I have four hours to do my homework and catch up on reading or writing or my blog, I'm going to kick my booty into gear, get my homework done and then spend the rest of my time doing things that I actually enjoy (sorry, didn't mean to call you out, schoolwork). The question is...how do you successfully and equally balance work and school? Well kids, don't do what I do. Just kidding. Despite a little blunder last semester, I personally think that I balance the two quite well. How? Wow, so full of questions today!


Agendas are no joke. I mention them in every single college advice post that I write and I will continue to do so until the end of time. Life with agendas and planners is infinitely better than life without one. Seriously. Head on over to Target or splurge on an Erin Condren planner. Doesn't matter what you use as long as it has monthly calendars and weekly spreads for your assignment. Keep track of the days (and hours) you work on your monthly spread. In a different color, put your class times. The key is to make sure that there is enough time in there for breaks. If you're going to work three days a week and have classes three days a week, make sure that you have a day off or at least a chunk of time off one of those days, whether it's during the afternoon or at night. Sometimes this can't be helped, especially if you're going to school full time and are close to working full time to make ends meet and pay for school. Those situations can get tough and that's when you need to practice incredible motivation and self-control to keep yourself focused. Use your agenda to not only keep track of your work and school schedule, but also to keep a detail count of your assignments. Write them down as tasks for the day, but also include their due dates so you know how much time you're working with.

2. Dedicate a specific time to school work

Yep, that's right. Create a period of time on your free day(s) dedicated specifically to school work. Carve out two hours (or three or four, however much time you need) and make that schoolwork time and nothing else. Knowing that a certain portion of your "free time" away from class and work is dedicated to schoolwork makes it part of your routine, your schedule. If you know that you have a four hour window of time on Tuesdays and Thursdays to get work done, take two of those hours each day to only do schoolwork. If you finish early, great, then you have more free time! Eventually, it'll become part of your routine and you'll know that schoolwork always happens from noon to two every Tuesday and Thursday!

3. Don't bring your work home

Easier said than done for some jobs. This might be easy if you work strictly retail, but if you don't and work in an office environment or hold some sort of other position at work, try your hardest to keep your work at work. This might be impossible from time to time so if it's an emergency, don't be too hard on yourself. But if you can, try to avoid working on work during your free time at home, especially if that free time is coming out of your allotted schoolwork time.

4. Give yourself weekly check-ins

Dedicate even twenty minutes or so at the end or beginning of each week to see where you are in the semester. Check to see which due dates have passed (and make sure you turned something in for those!) or which ones are coming up soon. See what you have to look forward to in the readings or discussion posts for the week. Just try to give yourself a little understanding of what your week is going to be like in regards to school instead of going into a week of classes blindly. Plan accordingly if you know that you're going to have a lot of work to do that week. Give yourself more time to work on school, by extending your "schoolwork time" by an hour or taking time out of one of your evenings after work to get a little extra done.

5. Give yourself breaks

It's easy (at least, for me) to get into that work, work, work and busy, busy, busy mentality, but sometimes you just have to give yourself a night off. I try to get all of my work done before the weekend so I have nothing to worry about until I start to plan out my week again on Sunday evenings. We all deserve a free day or night from time to time. Make it a priority if you can. Sometimes, we are just so loaded with work from school and our jobs that maybe this isn't possible, but if you can make it happen, treat yourself to some free time. You deserve it!

Monday, August 29, 2016

First Day of Class Woes

Nearly considered naming this post Running Through the (21)6 With My First Day of Class Woes. Maybe I should've.
Well, it's here...the first day of classes. And I have to be honest...I'm not excited. I'm truly, one hundred percent not excited. I'm sorry professors, who most certainly will not read this (but if you do, by chance, it's no offense to you–it's my last semester). After what feels like one thousand years of being in school, I'm finally at the end of the road and...nothing. I feel nothing. Not an ounce of excitement, not any sort of eagerness to go to any of my classes. Just a whole lot of nothing.

But all of this sounds so pessimistic. I do wish I was a bit more excited about the semester, but I also know that sometimes it just takes going through a situation to become more comfortable about it. Maybe I'm nervous that it's my last semester. Maybe I'm just not excited because I'm not entirely sure what I'm getting myself into. Or maybe I'm just not excited because I don't know what I'm capable of this semester yet.

The first day of classes still makes me a little nervous. Will I know anyone? Will the professor like me? Am I going to be able to pass this class? Am I going to be able to ace this class? Will I say something dumb? Am I going to understand the material? These are the stilly little things that run through my head during the first day and I don't think I can control them. But then they disappear and I stop worrying and all is well again.

I suppose it's hard to escape the first day of classes woes, the nervousness, the negative feelings. But then the first week of school passes and you fall into your routine and you don't even remember how you felt when you first walked into class at the beginning of the semester. At least, that's what I'm banking on!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Good Reads

1. Packing for College - How to Pack Like a Pro When you have the most adorable roommate in the world who finally came back to Ohio and used to make equally as adorable Youtube videos. Olivia is the master packer and organizer, so really, trust her tips.

2. NYC Will Always Have My Heart So jealous of Danie's summer in NYC and I think you might be too!

3. Dimmed Lighting Scares Me This entire blog...just yes. Hannah is hilarious and such a good story teller that you just get really engrossed in whatever she is saying. Give it a read!

4. Cracking Concealing Hannah is another person I trust with my makeup life so, by default, you should too.

5. Striped & Scalloped Can't go wrong with this classic color combo!

6. Timeless Originals I am so unbelievably excited for fall. This look isn't helping...#ByeByeSummer

7. Pinstripes and Pom Poms An unlikely combination that still manages to work!

8. Tools for Vlogging #NeverSayNever

9. 3 Ways to Actually Make Your Idea Come to Life Generally, I get ideas pretty often, I just struggle to do anything with them...

10. Leather & Lace A favorite fabric duo of mine, plus an equally as great song.

11. Pre-Fall Moodboard What I would give for fall to actually be here...

12. Three Looks: Prada Spring 2006 Boots Never doubt the power of patent leather hot pink boots.

13. The Dreaded Style Rut! I feel like I get stuck in these quite often...

14. Woman Crush Wednesday: Simone Biles I think I  mentioned my love and admiration for Simone Biles last week but in case I didn't...here I am, mentioning it again.

15. 25 Lipsticks for Fall Winter 2016-2017 Give me them all. Right. Now. (Though I do already have that Kat Von D liquid lipstick, so at least I'm ahead of the game there).

16. Remember 'The Nanny?' @WhatFranWore is Doing Important Work  I don't think I've ever seen The Nanny, but I know for a fact that I reblog photos of Fran Drescher every time they pop up on my dashboard on Tumblr because I am so in love with her character's style. Major heart eyes over this account.

What have you been reading lately? 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Can't Fight the Moonlight | An August Playlist

I don't know how this playlist got so big, but damn, August was the month of new (and rediscovered) music for me. There were a lot of killer songs on the Pandora stations at work and I think I really just dedicated time this month to try to listen to new releases or to delve into some #tbt tracks. Truthfully, for this to be a truly reflective playlist of what I listened to this month, the songs "Closer," "Into You," and "Cool Girl" should be on there about fifty times each. Those three songs were definitely the songs of August for me and I don't see that changing in September. So. Good.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Positivitea Cup Twelve: New Semester Pep Talk

Well folks, we're at the three day countdown until the fall semester starts. Three more days of freedom until school, once again, takes precedence over everything else. Whether you're excited or not (both are completely valid feelings), it's too close to the start to avoid the reality of a new semester. Whether it's your first semester or your last semester, or anything in between, the new semester is a new start in a sense. You get a new batch of classes with new professors and classmates and course material and all that good stuff. You might even get a new campus, if this is your first semester or even if you're a transfer student. Whatever the situation, something new awaits, which can be a little nerve-wracking.

It's okay to be nervous. It's hard to combat nervousness for the unknown. Sometimes, it just happens and it's nothing to be ashamed or afraid of. Easier said than done, but try not to let your nerves consume you. Find your comfort on campus or even a place off campus, if you must. Do what you need to do to make yourself comfortable, but don't let it control you or your actions on campus. Talk to the person next to you in class, meet your floormates, raise your hand to answer questions, make lunch plans, study plans, just take advantage of the new. Embrace it, even. No matter if you're going to a small college or a big university, you're going to be exposed to new people, new places, new things, just a whole lot of new.

College is going to be an adjustment. Heck, even a new semester is going to be somewhat of an adjustment. There's something ever-changing about college life, from new schedules every semester to seeing new faces when you're on campus on different times. New students filter in and out and there are only a few aspects that are constant. Even you might not be constant, but that's okay. College is a place to live and grow and learn new things about yourself. It's okay to make personal adjustments, adjustments to your schedule, any sort of tweak to grow and adapt with your new life.

Overall, just try your best. Put your all into whatever you do. Participate in class, make plans and go through with them, make friends, make acquaintances, make something of your time in college. Make yourself proud.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Things I'm Loving

1. Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Cannelle

I've been somewhat without concealer for the past month. I accidentally broke my Urban Decay Naked Concealer when I was home in July, but it was running out while I was on vacation regardless of the fact that I shattered its lid. I had a little bit of my MAC Pro Longwear Concealer left that got me through the following couple of weeks, but it was time I tried my hand at a new concealer. I always get nervous trying out new skin products as my face likes to break out any chance it gets. I didn't want to try something entirely new, but I also didn't want to repurchase the Urban Decay concealer because I just like to experiment with different products when I can.

Back in December, I picked up a sample of the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer to use as an undereye concealer. When I was on the hunt for a new one, this one was on the top of my mental list. It didn't break me out when I was using it back in the winter and I'd always heard good things about it from the beauty vloggers I watched on Youtube. I never know which shade to get so I just sort of...winged it with the shade here, but I ended up with Cannelle, which seems to be working out just fine for my skin tone (and foundation shade) at the moment! A little bit goes a long way, which is always a plus in my book. I just dot it over my imperfections, also known as my zits. I cover up my zits. Imperfections is such a kind way to describe my terrible skin, though. Thank you, Sephora descriptions.

I haven't had any issues with it yet! It hasn't irritated my skin, it wears quite nicely (I do set it though, just to really make sure it doesn't budge), and I like the packaging a lot! I always like Nars packaging though, even if the black matte packaging does get dirty easily.

2. TooFaced Better Than Sex Mascara

Man, I feel like this one needs a big #TBT hashtag next to it. I used to use this mascara back in my early college days (because I'm so old now, yeah?). I think I just got caught up in trying a lot of new mascaras that I sort of forgot that this one existed. However, I started to run out of my MAC False Lashes mascara and this was the first thing I thought of when I was thinking of what to replace it with. I just love this mascara so much? It's one of the only ones that I've tried that actually keeps my lashes voluminous and curled. It's not the most lengthening mascara for my lashes, but I am quite lucky to have long lashes in the first place, so it doesn't affect me all that much. I'm typically more concerned with making my lashes thick and voluminous rather than spidery and long, so this mascara is just the perfect one for me to achieve that look! Plus, I love the pretty metallic rose packaging!

3. Becca's Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Champagne Pop

Well, I finally did it. I finally joined 2016 and got one of the most gorgeous highlighter shades ever. This was definitely one of the most impulsive purchases I've ever made. I was meant to be getting the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette to replace mine (RIP, thank you for lasting me a whole year before you ran out) and right before I went to check out, I took a peek at the Becca counter. I took one look at at the metallic rose gold packaging and I snatched it. Right then and there, I snatched it and took it right to the counter with me without another thought. I've certainly swatched it before, but I just told myself I didn't need it. I still don't need it, but I got it anyways and I don't know if I've worn anything but this shade since I bought it last week. Honestly, Becca highlighters are just a personal favorite of mine in general. They literally make your cheekbones glow. If you are looking to jump on the highlighting train, just go right in and get a Becca one. You will not be disappointed.

4. "We Don't Talk Anymore" by Charlie Puth and Selena Gomez

This is just a continuation in my never ending saga of Francesca Loves Pop Music. I heard a few covers of this song and enjoyed it quite a bit, but then it came up on one of the Pandora stations at work and I wanted to fall on the floor. It's so good. Charlie Puth's voice is just so smooth and lovely and then you know Selena Gomez is there. I'm joking. Kind of. But really, it's a really nice duet and I'll probably cry at some point listening to it, but so far I've been tear free and have been able to truly just bop to this tune.

5. Topshop 'Dart' Block Heel Sandal

And here we have another impulsive purchase on my part. I have no excuse aside from the fact that Topshop finally had my size shoe in my favorite style and in a color that I don't have that style in yet. All of the elements were there and I had money in my bank account. Honestly, the timing was perfect and we were meant to be together. I have a pair of shoes like this in both nude and, oddly enough, a neon apricot color, but not in black? How did I go this long without having this shoe style in black? It's a travesty, truly. There are so many outfits that I've worn that could've used a pair of shoes like this, but better late than never, right?

All of my co-workers must be so sick of me wearing these shoes every single day, but I can't help it. They're comfortable, they go with literally everything and they are so easy to put on and take off. My other ones have complicated buckles or just slip on and take a lot of wrangling to do so, but these just slip on and you just have to do one little side snap and they're secured. One day I'll stop wearing these shoes. But for now, I'm going to embrace their presence in my life.

What have you been loving lately?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Stationery for a New Semester

My favorite (and one of my only favorite) thing about going back to school is going school supplies shopping. I am obsessed with and will probably always be obsessed with things like pens and netbooks and agendas and everything in between. There's just something so fun about buying the things that you need for school. The school part...eh, I could do without it. Let me hoard all of the post it notes for my own pleasure, not for actual use...

I swear, stationery is getting cuter and cuter as the years go on. These are some of my picks for some adorable school stuff on the market this year. Admittedly, I haven't done any school supply shopping yet because I technically don't have to because I buy this kind of stuff all year round...but I might just need to have a little peek, anyways.