Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Sorry I'm Not Sorry

Today I'm joining in on the "Sorry I'm Not Sorry" Linkup! Here are some of the things I will never apologize for....

Sorry I'm not sorry... For NOT having a wedding/marriage board on Pinterest. I can't do it. I set myself up for disappointment by completely creating a whole scenario for an event in my head and then it ends up being not what I imagined and thus, I end up disappointed. It's like New Year's Eve Syndrome, and I can't have that with my wedding! On top of it, I don't want to create a vision of what I want and then force my future husband to go along with everything. It's his day too, and he should have input on the ideas and decisions! Besides, do we think Pinterest is going anywhere? Maybe there will be a new and better Pinterest type site by the time I actually get engaged....

Sorry I'm not sorry... For having two Pinterest boards each dedicated to food, fashion inspiration, and up to date wish lists. I have a lot of recipes and a lot of lifestyle pins that appeal to me more than others for a current season. It helps my brain to have them all sorted out and in a separate spot. 

Sorry I'm not sorry... That I can't stand the Kardashians or pretty much any other reality TV show like Buckwild, Honey Boo Boo, or Dance Moms (exceptions are Jersey Shore, Snooki & JWoww, and Double Divas. See below). People talk about the Kardashians around me and I'm literally like "Nope, bye!" Again, I just can't.

Sorry I'm not sorry... That I have a fondness for the Jersey Shore Crew. While the concept of these late 20's, early 30's individuals getting paid to rage for a whole summer and be filmed while doing it is kind of ridiculous, their shenanigans are just so funny. And in the end, it was really heartwarming to see them overcome their differences, repair friendships, and be so close in the finale. Also tied into my above statement is that I like watching Double Divas, mostly because the women on the show are such characters and I'm a little bit fascinated with what they do every day. And I kind of like that it's a show about female entrepreneurs. 

Sorry I'm not sorry... For not washing my hair every day. Or every other day. Believe me, you can't tell if I have or if I haven't on any given day. I've developed a great system over the past... six years? I buy dry shampoo in bulk, have a crazy baseball hat collection, and it's amazing. I hate wrangling my long hair as it is, and I can't say I hate having extra time to sleep or relax because my hair is already done! Plus, it's good for my hair! Win-win if you ask me.  

Sorry I'm not sorry... for saying "sorry I'm not sorry" regularly since I first saw it on TFM. Also for saying "YOLO" regularly because it's my final semester of college and sometimes that is your only justification for doing something. 

There are probably looooots of other things I wouldn't apologize for on a regular basis, but eh, sorry I'm not sorry! Have a great Wednesday!

A New Resolution

It is never easy to admit defeat, but I think I have reached an all - time low with being comfortable with my body. One year ago, I would have to say I was pretty happy with the way I looked. I was curvy and confident, wearing tops that showed off my stomach or sheer shirts with a bandeau. Fast forward a year and now I am not even happy with myself in jeans and a sweatshirt. Trying on clothes for the past couple of months has sucked because nothing looks the way I want it to because I don't look the way that I want to. Trying to find outfits to wear to chapter or to wear out at night has been extremely difficult because nothing in my closet fits either (and Spanx can only do so much).

I am unhappy. And as much as I want to just roll out of bed looking great, eating whatever I want, and not working out, it's just not possible. I have to work to get myself to where I want to be.

What is my plan and how am I going to do it? First, I have to change my diet. Second, I have to change my workout habits. Third, I have to change my mindset. Fourth, I have to change my lifestyle to emcompass all of these changes and to work around other "problems".

Diet The Way I Eat
First off, I need to change the way I think about food. Food is what fuels our bodies, it is not something to be cut out or restricted. No more "diet" - food is fuel. Secondly, I need to change what I shop for, how I shop, and how I plan meals. I need to buy, prepare, and eat food that will be efficient for my body while sticking to a budget. But I also need to think about what is going to work with my lifestyle (and my habits). Some things I need to keep in mind are: that I am always running late (I need quick things to grab and go, so preferably pre-prepared meals), how much fridge/storage space I have at my apartment, my class schedule and when I will be wanting foods (so again, prepared meals I can take to class and eat on breaks, without fear of spoilage).

Get Moving
I find it extremely difficult to schedule time to work out with the way I have my weeks planned right now. Most of this is because I wait until the absolute last minute to do work for class and often I forgo sleep to do so, leaving me exhausted the next day and barely able to stay awake, much less work out. I honestly need to schedule a day where I leave my apartment and go to a coffee shop to do homework so I am not scrambling during the week. Hopefully doing this will give me some time where I can squeeze in some workouts where I wouldn't have had time before (I'm looking at you, Tuesdays between 1 and 4). I am also trying to plan workouts with friends to hold myself accountable for working out as well as being social. One friend and I usually work out on Thursday afternoons but we are hoping to start working out on Friday afternoons (I don't have class so what's my excuse?) and take a yoga class on Wednesday night. If I can schedule some kind of work out for Sunday nights and Tuesday afternoons between classes, I would be working out at least four times a week and hopefully 5!

The Way I Think
"Any workout is better than no workout." "What you eat in private shows in public." "Food is fuel." These are some of the mantras I need to repeat to myself. I skip workouts, snack "just because", and cook indulgent foods regularly because of Pinterest and food cravings. I have to tell myself that working out and eating smart is just as essential as sleeping or breathing. I need to think positive about these things because the more I tell myself that, the more it's going to stick in my head and motivate me. I also need to think about my choices - Why am I choosing to eat this? What is the motivation behind this? Why am I craving this? Is there a different option on the menu that would satisfy my craving just as well but fit in better with the foods I want to be fueling my body with? Why am I not working out? What am I doing that is more important than my health? Mostly I need to stop beating myself up and instead bring myself up.

Changing My Lifestyle
This encompasses all of the changes I want to make but also goes beyond into other areas of my life. What lifestyle changes do I want to make? Planning my shopping list and menu for the week in advance (cut down on impulse buys, impulse indulgences, and trips to the grocery store), cutting back on eating out but also making smarter choices when I do, scheduling in meal prep time, adding in more workouts to my week, taking a day out of my weekend and spending it at a coffee shop to get work done in advance to "free up" other time in my week. I also probably need to go through my Pinterest food boards and clean those up as well... I spend too many late nights drooling over food pins. Yikes. I also need to clean out my shelf in our pantry and once I finish eating what I have (gotta work existing products in in moderation), I will have to keep it stocked with healthy choices instead of boxes of mac & cheese, packages of ramen, and cheesy crackers.

Wish me luck - and let me know if you are on a similar journey!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Stressed Out Skin Savers

I will admit it - I am 21 years old and still break out like crazy sometimes. I hate it. I hate that I break out just as much now as I did when I was 16. I hate that everything I have tried so far has not been the miracle I have been hoping for. Mostly I hate that I don't have flawless skin with no effort needed like some of my friends. Seriously, when you look at my roommate's half of the bathroom in comparison to mine, the amount of products on my side is at least double what you see on hers. Man, do I feel high maintenance.

Strangely enough, I am breaking out horribly right now and it is not related to PMS. I have been relatively meticulous about my skin care for a while now and all of a sudden, boom! Breakouts. What do I do when I get really stressed out about my skin? A face mask. I have been using masks for several years, but only in the past six months or so have I found two that are pretty amazing. Bliss "No Zit Sherlock" Breakout Busting Rubberizing Mask and Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask to Open Pores. I have repurchased the Bliss mask at least twice now and I have received several samples of the Origins mask in my recent Sephora orders. A purchase of that mask might be in the near future...

Bliss No Zit Sherlock Breakout Busting Rubberizing Mask
I love this mask. The minty smell, the refreshing cooling sensation, and the best part - getting to peel off the mask at the end! This mask sucks oil out of my skin and peels off rough skin flakes, leaving me with super soft, refreshed skin. Whenever I am having a major breakout, I use this and I swear my breakouts shrink overnight, which is quite a feat because most of my breakouts are huge cystic acne nodules. I am convinced this mask is magic.

Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask to Clear Pores
 This mask I have received as a deluxe sample in two of my recent Sephora orders. This mask is a little bit tingly (but in a warm way) and also does a great job of smoothing out my skin. I have not tried this mask when my face is extremely oily (i.e., the summertime) but I am loving it for the winter months. This one takes a little bit longer to take off because this mask needs to be rinsed off when it dries. Not my favorite feature, but the rest of the experience is pleasant so I don't really mind! It basically forces me to have a relaxing night because I use it after a shower and once I take off this mask, it's moisturizer and time for bed.

Hope everyone has a good Monday! Take some time off today and de-stress your skin - save your sanity for later in the week.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Friday Five

Here are my five favorite things right now!

1) Homemade iced chai tea lattes! I picked up a carton of this mix earlier in the week and I've been addicted ever since.... I'm drinking one as I write this post!

2) Working out with friends! In an effort to keep me away from my computer (online shopping) I have been heading to the gym with a friend this week to workout and hang out. Next week we're adding in a yoga class for some variety! 

3) Okay so... I don't technically have this item yet. I came up with the idea to embroider my sorority's crest on a bunch of garments (puffy vests, windbreakers, hoodies, sweatshirts, etc) and I am obsessed with this windbreaker! Yes, I graduate in a couple of months but this is the perfect thing to wear with leggings and Hunters when it rains! Or to go to the gym! Or.... okay I'll stop! 

4) My new phone case, courtesy of my boyfriend! I have had J.Crew cases ever since I got my iPhone (leopard, black and white hearts, and now this one) and I LOVE them. This one is even better than the original cases because the hole in the case for headphones is wider, meaning I can plug my speaker jack into it without having to take the case off!

5) I am obSESSED with this website! I know I gave up shopping for Lent but somehow it is very easy for me to look and not buy on this site - I think because everything is so inexpensive, I think it's stupid to have to pay shipping and therefore don't want anything badly enough! They have awesome jewelry deals and feature a ton of pieces that are very similar to J.Crew pieces! 

Hope everyone has a great weekend! 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Almost-Spring Cleaning

It's that in-between time of year where the temperature goes from cold to warm and springlike and back again, classes are taking their toll, and the to-do lists are piling up. For me, crazy days of classes combined with hanging out with friends and my boyfriend have been leaving me feel like everything in my life is a mess - especially my room in my apartment!

A major source of my cleaning stress is laundry. It seems like I always have either a ton of laundry to wash or a ton of laundry to put away (and putting it away is ten times more difficult than washing it!). To be honest, I think I just need to do loads throughout the week to make it all manageable. I end up washing the same few items that I wear repeatedly (leggings, my favorite jeans, quarter zip sweatshirts, v-neck tees, layering tanks) and digging through all of my clean laundry just to find it, leaving my room in shambles.

But in reality, perhaps my biggest problem is that I love to shop - and I don't wear nearly as many of my purchases as I should. I decided (on a whim) to stop shopping for Lent. It's something I've noticed several other bloggers are doing as well. My thought was, "If they can do it, why can't I?" and after I decided to commit to it, I keep thinking how great it will be. I will be forcing myself to work with what I have instead of buying new things. I will be taking a good hard look at the items in my closet and getting rid of what I don't love (and returning anything possible!). And another thing that my shopping ban is doing is motivating me to work out more so I can look great in the clothes I have instead of taking the easy way out and buying new items (I have noticed that my clothes are not fitting the way I like anymore - I want to tighten up my exercise and eating habits to get myself to a healthier and happier mental and physical state!). Of course, the final bonus is that there will be extra cash in my wallet now - definitely something I need as a college student!

Put away all of my laundry. Do the laundry that has been piling up. Organize my clothes in my closet so everything is accessible and won't become a mess when I'm in a hurry! Return at least one item in my "returns bin" (especially the returns to the store I work at!). 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Enjoy the day with all of your loved ones..... 
Friends, family, significant others, pets, favorite coworkers....
and don't forget YOURSELF!

Okay, and if you end up mourning your love life/what have you at a bar/salon/restaurant/etc, tell your favorite bartender/beautician/server that you love them and everything they do for you :) 
Give a little love, get a little love! 

Monday, February 11, 2013

Obsession: J.Crew Factory Jewelry

As a seasonal employee at J.Crew and a huge jewelry lover, one of my favorite things to do is check out the latest jewelry at J.Crew and J.Crew Factory! I love their necklaces and bracelets because they make it so easy to make a statement. I wear several pieces so often that they have become my signature items and my friends are constantly looking for similar pieces to get the same look!

Here are my current favorites from the new arrivals at J.Crew Factory:

Now the question is - which color do I want? 

My favorite co-worker has this necklace and wears it all the time - it's beautiful with anything, even layered with other necklaces! 

This necklace is insane. It would be gorgeous with a white collared shirt (buttoned all the way up, of course). 

A perfectly scaled down version of the ever popular Pave Crystal Link Bracelet from J.Crew. 

I normally pass on earrings (they get lost under my long hair) but I love the pop of color these add! Since they are studs, the color stays close to your face (meaning it won't get lost in your hair!). 

Someone take my credit card away from me. Or surprise me with these as a gift... 
If you're in a shopping mood, use the code GETMORE until midnight on the 12th to get 30% off final sale items at J.Crew Factory

Have a great week everyone! 

P.S. My boyfriend said he got me J.Crew jewelry for Valentine's Day... Can't wait to see what he picked out! He definitely did his research! 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Starting out...

Hi there!

Welcome to my blog. I'm Amy, a 21 year old college student located in the heart of the Midwest. I've had the goal of creating a blog for almost a year now and finally, I have. And it's probably the first thing I've actually been able to accomplish off of my New Year's Resolutions... But anyways. I'm a college senior in the homestretch of my undergrad career. I'm studying Art History and Material Culture and part of the reason I created this blog is to help me hone my eye for all things fashion and design related. On another level, I'm going to use it to blog about topics I feel passionate about and want to share with the world. Some of these topics that I hope to cover here are: 
  • Fashion
  • Interior Decor
  • DIY's
  • Recipe successes (and possibly failures...)
  • Wants & Needs
  • Cool things I find
  • Anything and everything that I love
I hope you will enjoy following me through life! I look forward to documenting things here and getting to "meet" new people!