Things I'm Loving

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Things I've been reading: I have a whole post coming next week about some other YA books that I've read, but since I have 180 Seconds by Jessica Park sitting in front of me at this very moment, I figured I'd talk about this one first and save the other three for an upcoming post (oooh, the suspense). I picked this book up on a friend's recommendation and it took me a while to start it because I had stacks and stacks of library books that I needed to get through first. The time finally came on Saturday night and I did what I do best and finished it in one sitting.

Allison Dennis had been in foster care her entire life, switching between families until she settled in with Simon when she was sixteen who adopted her. Because of her history, Allison has trouble letting people in, keeping her walls sky high for everyone besides her best friend Steffi, her foster sister at one time. Even going into her second year of college, Allison struggles to be friendly with people, preferring to keep to herself to avoid making connections and getting hurt.

I Was Busy Thinking 'Bout... | An August Playlist

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

There is a reasonable explanation for the nine Kesha songs on this month's playlist...KESHA IS AMAZING. It's as simple as that. It started with the emotional experience I had when I heard "Praying" for the first time and went on a hunt to find as many live performances of it as possible because sometimes I just like to make sure I'm not a robot and am fully capable of feeling things from time to time. And then I went down the Kesha rabbit hole and I had to bop to some of her old jams. I'm still working my way through her new album because it generally takes me sixteen years to listen to something new.

Six Ways to Manage Your Finances For Food & Fun In College

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

College is expensive. I'm not talking about tuition itself because we all know that price tag. Beyond tuition costs and room and board, everything costs a pretty penny. Between books, the necessary groceries, notebooks, pens, flash drives, computers, headphones, anything you see yourself needing on all adds up and the money to pay for it has to come from somewhere.

Maybe you have a job, maybe you just have a savings account that you tried to fill as much as possible during the summer while you didn't have any classes. Regardless, there's constantly the temptation to spend, whether or not the purchases are necessary. A couple of weeks ago I talked about how I've been saving money this summer, which is all fine and dandy, but saving money is a much easier task when you don't have rent or utilities to pay for or the endless possibilities for socializing that can happen when you're on campus or living with your best friends.

Breaking Down Actual Outfits I Wore to Class in College

Monday, August 28, 2017

It's Monday and the first day of classes for a lot of college students, so we're going to take it down a notch and make today a little more of a casual post. One of my favorite things on this blog is my Recent Outfits posts, where I just give my outfits ridiculous names, shown through crappy mirror pics. Let's pretend like it's 2008 again and kick it back to some outfits I definitely remember wearing around campus.

I'd say my last two years of college, but senior year mainly, I definitely stopped caring. Not about my appearance, but about what other people would think about my appearance. I had no issues with being the most dressed up person in the room or getting an eyebrow raise from a professor during lectures because I was wearing navy blue or black lipstick.

The fabulous thing about college is that you can literally wear anything you want and for the most part, nobody cares. I can't speak for everyone, of course, but my theory is that if people care about such inane things, they should really focus on something else.

Check out more of my Recent Outfits posts here, if not for outfit inspiration, then for a few laughs because they're my favorite posts to write.

T-shirt: gift | Jeans: Gap | Boots: Nine West | Cardigan: Rag & Bone
This was a pretty standard and easy outfit to pull off. It's really just a t-shirt, cardigan, and a pair of boyfriend jeans. I think a pair of black booties is just a massive wardrobe staple. They go with everything and make a simple look even more put together. Also, note the messy bun. Looks like I took some of my own advice for getting ready in the morning in a jiff...

Dream Closet, Vol. 32

Friday, August 25, 2017

I have to admit, this is one of the weirder editions of the series that I will never let die. I don't know what came over me during my monthly scroll through Net-A-Porter (another day more might just lead me to doomsday...also known as the moment I snap and make an order that will not help my financial standing). I just had a passion for slightly strange fashion and I have no regrets. Mostly because I made absolutely zero decisions and spent no money in the making of this post.

Things I'm Loving

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Things I've been reading: I plan on having another YA Lit book round up in a week or so when I finish the others in my library book pile, but I had a lot of time to kill on Monday and this book kept me occupied while I sat in a golf cart for literally over five hours. The Unlikelies by Carrie Firestone was a book that I, admittedly, picked out because the cover is adorable and super aesthetically pleasing. How adorable is that pastel blue cover and watercolors of ice cream cones and popsicles?

The Unlikelies follows Sadie, deserted in the Hamptons for the summer by her best friend who's coaching a camp across the country and her now college bound ex-boyfriend. She's destined to spend her summer working at a farm stand. One day on the job, a drunk man leaves his baby unattended in the car and Sadie shows concern and tries to help. The man assaults her and the entire thing is caught on video. This video went viral and Sadie became internet famous for saving that baby's life, as the father had kidnapped the child from its rightful mother.

Sometimes I Read Nonfiction Too...

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

I split up my most recent trip to the library into two sections: books on 14-day loan and books that were not on 14-day loan. This also perfectly split my pile of six books into three "memoirs" and three YA books. Let's be real, pretty much all I read is YA Lit, memoirs/books of personal essays, and the occasional cult favorite fiction book (i.e. Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, The Girls, what the hell is it with books with the word "girls" in the title being so popular?

I've been dying to read Lauren Graham's book because she portrayed one of my favorite characters of all time and she discusses Gilmore Girls through recounts and diary entries a lot during this book, which makes my GG loving heart soar. I've heard amazing things about Ann Shoket's book, The Big Life, and always love some career advice from time to time, especially geared towards women my age. I forgot Ashley Graham had a book, honestly, but it was on display in the new arrivals section at the library and I snatched it immediately. She is, beyond just being gorgeous, a really smart business woman and has undeniably helped shift the fashion industry to some degree. 

These three women have unknowingly entertained me for the past two weeks, so thanks, guys! You're the best!

Did Glossier Super Pure Serum Save My Skin?

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

In my head, I'm picturing my little blue bottle of Super Pure wearing a cape (pastel, of course) that flows gloriously in the wind. My skin has been my biggest nightmare for the past seven years. Forget the boogeyman or that creepy doll that for some reason keeps getting her own movie. Nope, my skin has been haunting me since I was just a wee little teenager and nothing has worked. I had bad acne. I don't want to say terrible because while it certainly was my biggest insecurity (which says a lot because few things trump my insecurity about my huge nose), it could have been worse. It was, however, seemingly never ending.

There wasn't a moment since middle school or so that I haven't had some sort of breakout on my face. Sometimes it would only be a few pimples, then it turned to my cheeks, then it was all around my mouth and nose. Then the horrible habit of popping zits and picking skin turned those zits into scars and I was left with not only active breakouts but scarring that added even more redness to my face.

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall...Wait, I Have How Many Minutes to Get Ready?

Monday, August 21, 2017

No matter how many alarms you set, how much sleep you get, and how much you know you have to do in the morning, at least once in your life, you'll oversleep by complete accident and throw off your whole morning routine. These things happen to the best of us, and honestly, you never know how to prepare for these moments. 

Another scenario: you wake up on time but it's an ungodly hour because you thought that an 8 AM class would be doable when, after only a week of being enrolled, realized that an 8 AM class was not doable. You look at the clock and realize that time has somehow sped up two hours and you have what seems like not enough time to do anything, let alone get yourself ready for the day.

I have good news for you: the world doesn't have to fall apart if you're running late!

Six Things To Do Your First Week of College

Friday, August 18, 2017

I don't know how to break it to college or grad school (do any Ph.D. students waste their time reading this blog? Probs not) students, but school is starting soon, if it has not already. My first day of college was six million years ago in 2013 and I did it wrong. I did my entire first two years of college wrong, to be quite honest. I was fine and content with my college experience thanks to my last two years being great, but man, sometimes I imagine how different it would've been if I started caring a little bit earlier than I did.

The first week of college can be seven days of complete stress bound together with the rest of the entire spectrum of emotions. It can be sad, exciting, maddening, draining. Most likely, it will be all of the above and they'll strike at random moments. To my rising freshmen who might be starting school on Monday or in a week (sorry if you've already started, oops), your first week isn't going to make or break your entire college career. Still, these are some things that I did or wish that I had done my first week of freshmen year that could have made my first two years a little different.

Things I'm Loving

Thursday, August 17, 2017

What I've been listening to: I don't use Spotify in my car, mostly because I am too lazy to create offline playlists and my brother plows through data on our family plan so fast that I'm constantly paranoid about using my phone when I don't have wifi to make up for his over-use of data every single month. This means that I tend to just rely on the music that I have on my phone. I've been using Spotify since my senior year of high school, so that was around the time I stopped buying music on iTunes. Long story short, a majority of the music on my iPhone is at least four or five years old, sans some new One Direction and Little Mix.

Seven Things I Can't Resist Spending Money On

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

My life is just one big contradiction after the next. I'm trying to justify purchases while also trying to save money also while admitting that there is a whole slew of things that I have a very difficult time saying no to. Just trying to keep it real on here. 

I am trying to save money, but I also do believe in being able to treat yourself if the bank account allows it. I feel very lucky that I can resist spending my entire savings on handbags that have the potential to bankrupt me. My weaknesses when it comes to shopping are fairly innocent. I mean, how embarrassing would it be if I bankrupted myself from buying too many coffees? I mean, I could see it happening know what, let's just dive into the seven things I hate about you that will always get the best of me when it comes to shopping.

A Guide to My Favorite NARS Lipsticks

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

When I look into my lipstick drawer, I see a sea of black tubes. This is partially because basically, every single brand uses black tubes, but also because I own a lot of NARS lipsticks. I mean, it probably doesn't seem like a lot, but I like to try out a lot of various makeup brands, so for me to have multiples from the same is pretty rare. If I could afford it, I'd have many, many more. Unfortunately, sometimes you just have to choose bill payments over new lipsticks. Is this what growing up is like?

NARS is well known for their Laguna Bronzer and Orgasm products, even their combination blush and bronzer palettes, but I never really heard much about their lipsticks throughout my time watching overwhelming amounts of beauty videos on Youtube. They seemed to have been the forgotten makeup products, hidden in the shadow of MAC.

The only time I really heard of NARS lip products being brought up was when it came time to use a gloss and the NARS gloss in Roman Holiday would come out to play. I've used quite a few of their formulas and I have to say...they're some of my favorites. I love the packaging, the formulas are very consistent, and the color selection is exciting, while still offering some traditional nude shades for those more conservative with their lip color choices.

My Reading Marathon | Four YA Books, One Post

Monday, August 14, 2017

Last week, I had a bit of a reading marathon. I didn't have a lot going on and the kids I babysit weren't home very much, so between some other work I had to get done, I basically dedicated a week to reading. A couple of these books I really liked, one I wasn't quite a fan of, and the other...well...I still can't decide how I feel about it. I would just like to say that I'm not the be-all-end-all of book reviews. I can't even write proper reviews. I just like to ramble about my ~ feelings ~ and hope for the best. So, you know, if I don't like something, it doesn't necessarily mean it's bad and vice versa! I don't normally talk about things that I dislike on this blog, so I just wanted to make that clear because I have guilty conscious and writing is hard and it's impossible to please everyone. Okay, now that we have that out of the way, let's dive in!

How to Break a Boy by Laurie Devore

This book stood out to me for a couple of reasons. First thing: the title is amazing. It's a #LifeGoal of mine (I'm absolutely kidding). But truly, the title piques your interest, plus the incredibly bright cover design. Couple in the fact that the description of the book on the inside of the front sleeve mentions fake dating and you've got the perfect formula for me to check a book out of the library. I don't think I actually squealed when I picked this one up off of the shelf, but honestly, it could've happened.

How I've Been Saving Money This Summer

Friday, August 11, 2017

I am notoriously bad with money. I never feel like I have enough of it and constantly feel like I'm spending irresponsibly. I used to joke that I was broke, but at least I was broke after paying off all of my bills, right? I saw something the other day that said that was "responsibroke," so, take that, mom!

This summer I really wanted to stick to my goal of saving as much money as possible. So far, I think I've been doing fairly well. I've purchased a few things here and there, but nothing has seemed too out of line and there's still some time this summer left to earn and save. This time of year was the most ideal time for me to try to save. I don't have rent or utility bills to pay. I'm not working in retail anymore and don't feel the need to buy new clothes and makeup to keep up an appearance. I'm not going out to eat or getting drinks with my friends. Aaaand now I sound like a total loser. 

Even with this ideal money saving situation of living at home and not having many personal expenses, I've definitely been doing everything I can to ensure that I save a decent chunk of the money that I'm making.

Things I'm Loving

Thursday, August 10, 2017

What I'm reading: I've read quite a few books over the course of the past week, but only one of those books I truly feel like I can recommend because I loved it. The other two...well, I'll leave those for a post for another time! However, I just recently read Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies by Laura Stampler and it knocked my socks off. It's no secret that I'm a speedy reader, but I genuinely did not want to put this book down at any time. I finished it in a day in probably a six hour period or so and it was so worth it. The only downside to my expedited reading process is that I'm done with the books I love so dearly in such a short period of time. Oh well!

Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies is about high-schooler Harper Anderson, the newest intern for Shift magazine. There's a catch–she's the new summer dating blogger with no dating experience herself, besides a few bad kisses. In fact, her application essay (which landed her the spot) about a bad hookup was based on her best friend Kristina's embarrassing faux pas. Far away from her comfort zone in California, Harper takes on a new persona in New York City, making sure that she becomes the magazine's ideal summer intern and dating blogger.

Weighing In On Liquid Lipsticks

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

As someone who is extremely passionate about my lipsticks, it has come to my attention that I haven't talked about them in quite some time. It felt like my lipstick drawer was calling out to me recently, telling me that it missed me. I have, admittedly, been ignoring it all summer, mostly because I haven't been wearing much makeup at all and when I do, I normally go for a matte nude. Tsk tsk, I am ashamed of myself.

One of my favorite forms of lipstick is a liquid lipstick. There are so many out on the market, so let's consider this comprehensive blog post a guide to some of the most popular liquid lipsticks out on the market and whether they're worth it or not. This would totally come down to somebody's preference, of course, but these are just my experiences with each of the brands that I've tried.

Whoever Said Negativity Was the New Pink Was Seriously Disturbed

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Maybe I spend too much time on the internet, but man, some people are just so negative. It's beyond being a Negative Nancy. It's Negative Nancy stuck under a black rain cloud that monsoons 24/7 and has little lightning bolts that strike every thirty minutes on the dot. I'm not sure when it happened, but being negative became the new black and I for one am not here for it. But what are you supposed to do when you're shrouded in negativity, whether it be the people you're friends with, your co-workers, classmates, or perhaps just the atmosphere you're surrounded by?

Show Your Summer Stripes

Monday, August 7, 2017

If you follow me on Instagram, these two outfits may seem familiar. If you don't follow me on Instagram, well, first thing's first, you're missing out. There's a common theme within my current outfits and as you can probably gather from the title, the common denominator is stripes. I always tend to gravitate towards stripes when buying clothes. It's a trend that will never die. Even if it does, at some point, become completely uncool to rock stripes, you'll have to pry my striped clothing out of my cold dead hands.

Recent Reads #1

Friday, August 4, 2017

Despite Sundays being "off-days" on my blog now, I didn't want to lose the spirit of my Good Reads posts, so I figured I'd sprinkle them in from time to time because it's fun to share some awesome posts from everyone else every once in a while.

1. What To Say Instead Of "You're Not Fat" I think this is a really interesting concept for an article and something that I struggle with when talking day-to-day with friends or customers back when I was working retail. The idea of "you're not fat, you're beautiful" is a really strange way to respond to someone's comments about themselves. That correlation would assume that fat = ugly and thin = beautiful and that's just not the reality of the situation. I highly recommend reading the entire article, but the key, as author Kelsey Miller points out, is to respond to their feelings, not their bodies.

Things I'm Loving

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Things I'm reading: After being home for months, I finally took a trip to my favorite local library, renewed my card, and took out five books that I'm so stoked to read. I picked them up on Monday and powered through the first book at the top of my pile, which was Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett. It's essentially a modern day, teen-version of You've Got Mail and it was addicting as all hell. I could not put this book down. I read all but about, like, 50 pages in one sitting yesterday and I was legitimately screeching towards the end.

The Purchase Justification Process

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The irony of this photo is that these shoes were $15, the jeans were my mom's from over ten years ago, and I got the sweater for $10 on sale at H&M. Trust me, though, most other things in my wardrobe went through this justification process.

I don't mean to pat myself on the back but I've had people tell me that I'm the only person they'll shop with. Now, we know it's not because I'm silent and not annoying because that is just not the truth. I am the master of telling friends that something just isn't them without crushing their spirits. But I have also mastered another skill that gets me into trouble more often than not. I can justify most, if not all purchases. There's a tier of questions to ask yourself as you're shopping and you pick up a black and white gingham ruffle one-shoulder top in the sale section.

Going Back to College?

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

It's August 1st, which can only mean one things. Actually, two things. You can officially start using the 2018 agenda that your purchased for this year. The second thing that the first of this month signifies something bigger (I know, bigger than getting to use a new agenda? Impossible). It's back to school at the end of the month for many people. Thankfully, not me. Not to point my finger and snicker and says "SUCKERS!" while I kick my legs back and relax. I paid my dues, man. I paid my dues!

I like giving unsolicited college advice. It's one of my favorite things to do. I'd like to think that I was pretty good at the college thing. I made some noticeable mistakes, but I came out of it at the end in a pretty good place, which I'd consider a success. So clearly, I am now mega-qualified to write all of these posts. Since I am the College Master™ (joking, totally, 100% joking), I figured I'd break up this back to school series into a few sections so I can delve into various aspects of college. We have today's, (You've Got Me Feeling) Emotions & Socialization, and then I'm sure I'll touch on money, what to eat, having fun, getting ready for classes, and who knows what else will pop into my head.
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