Friday, September 30, 2016

Book Club: September 2016

Hello Fellow Clubbies!

This has been a tough month in getting started. For some reason I had a real lack of motivation when it came to reading. I really had to force myself to read more. I think I need a really fun and silly book to read. If you all have any advice on what to read just let me know :)


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The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan
This one took me quite some time to read. Luckily I had it with me while I was on deployment so I could read it on some of my down time. It is an interesting read and it is interesting how some of the things Betty talks about are still true and relevant now, so many years later. With all the issues we are facing these days, it is nice to see where we have come from and where we are going.

What are you reading?
XOXO

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Teeny Home Upgrades That Make All The Difference



Hello Friends!!

Sometimes you fall in a rut. I know I have in the past and I feel completely uninspired by everything. I found that changing some teeny every day things can actually have a huge impact on getting out of that rut. By updating your living space without a lot of time or money it will be a huge change.

Switch out your light bulbs
I mean sure you switched to the energy-efficient LEDs, but upgrading to a bulb that casts an even tone that can really improve your home's overall glow. Filter out those dull, yellow rays so that colors and patterns in your home really pop!

Replace your pillow sham
Swapping out your neutral hued pillow covers for something bold and bright! Brand new colors can totally change the look of your living room- or bedroom. (BTW end of summer sales are a great time to look for new pillows).

Splurge on a nice throw blanket
New sofas are expensive. But it's easy to add a layer of texture! Whether its wool or faux fur, a new blanket is a great way of showing your sofa some love.

Add in a statement making house plant
You are totally capable to taking care of a fiddle leaf! The large green leaves make everyone think you put a lot more effort.

What would you upgrade?
XOXO

Monday, September 26, 2016

6 Reasons Why We Love Farmer's Markets

Hello All,

Farmer's Markets are my favorite things ever! They are great you can find so many amazing things and its fun to see what people in your community are up to. Here are my list of favorite things about Farmer's Markets.

one// Fresh Produce
This is the best part!! All the fresh fruits and veggies that are in season at the moment. It is great to be able to bite into a fruit or vegetable that is freshly picked. Farmer's Markets give us all the locally grown produce.

two//Artisan Products
From handmade soaps to fresh baked bread it is a perfect place to try all the new things. This is where my sister first tried and fell in love with Black African Soap. Everything is made by people that are experts at making that thing.

three//New Foods
Farmer's Markets have all sorts of new foods you can try! The one I like to go to has gyros, Argentinian food, arepas, vegan food, chia seed enriched food, and all sorts of goodies that make for amazing lunches and snacks.

four//Flowers
Along with the fresh produce, farmer's markets offer beautiful plants. My favorite buy at the farmer's market was a tangerine tree seedling. We planted it, watched it grow, and eventually got tangerines.

five//The Ambiance
Farmer's markets are great because of the ambiance. There is music and bustling. You can talk to the vendors or the other people. It seems that the whole environment puts everyone in a great mood.

six//Feeling Of Becoming an Adult

Look at you go! Buying fresh fruits and vegetables? Planning breakfast? Carrying grocery bags and providing for yourself! Props to you, you fully functioning adult, you!


What are your favorite things about Farmer's Markets?
XOXO

Friday, September 23, 2016

BFF Care Package

Hello All!!

The hardest part about growing up is the fact that everyone at some point or another moves away. If you're like me your best friend lives too many miles away to even count. I miss her like none other and the phone calls, snaps, and texts just don't make up for it. I personally love sending and receiving mail, so I am a huge sucker for letters and care packages. There are so many great things to send your BFF.

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one//Cute Clutch
Now you can go ahead and buy a super cute clutch, there's literally so many out there. I personally love this DIY Confetti Clutch. Because my best friend deserves to sparkle while she's out on the town!

essie angora cardi:
two//Nail Polish
My best friend and I have bonded countless hours over our love of nail polish and painting our nails. She finds it very de-stressing and some times when life gets too difficult I know sending her some fun nail polish colors will always help her out.

Brownie Cookies - brownies meet cookies in this recipe that's the best of both worlds!
three//Homemade Cookies
I think we can all agree that homemade cookies are the best things in life! So while you're getting this box of goodies for your bestie why not prepare a batch of her favorite goodies!!

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four//Candles
Candles are my favorite things. They help set a relaxing mood, or make your house smell amazing. I truly believe there is no such thing as having too many candles.

Art journal inspiration - embellishment for travel journals / diaries. Maps + polaroid postcards:
five///Cards or Postcards
What a better way to send a message than a handwritten card? I personally love writing cards and sending them. I, also, send postcards a lot. Whether its from somewhere I've traveled or to remind my bestie of home, postcards are a great way to show someone that they're on your mind.

What would you put in your package?
XOXO

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Wine Butter Recipe

Hello All!!

So I stumbled on this one and I thought it was amazing!! I just had to try it and share it with you all! Wine Butter!! Who would have thought?? It is so cool, so fun to make, and has great uses.


Here's how you make it:
Get a stick of unsalted butter and whip it. Then you need a bottle of wine (dry Sauvignon Blanc or Cabernet Sauvignon), 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, and parchment paper. You can add shallots, herbs, or more fruits for flavor.

Pour the bottle of wine into a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer for about an hour. Let the wine cool to room temperature and then add the whipped butter stirring until it no longer separates. Using parchment paper roll the wine butter into logs. Refrigerate until firm.

How to use it:
You can use it every time you're cooking with wine instead of the wine. Use it to make pan sauces or to top meat and fish dishes. Or forget the whole cooking thing and spread it on a crostini!


How are you going to eat it?
XOXO

Monday, September 19, 2016

Motivational Monday

Hello All!!

Happy Monday! I needed some motivation to get this week going:


Have a good Monday
XOXO

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

How to Stay Organized

Hello Loves!

Staying organized is hard enough, it's even harder when your busy schedule keeps you three steps behind where you want to be. I feel like busy comes in cycles. Moments where you are at your peak busy and then when it seems like nothing is happening. It is when we are at our peak that it seems like everything is falling to pieces. That is when we need to stay organized more than any other time. There are a couple things I try to do to stay organized in those crazy moments.



Keep Your Planner Updated
Basically this is my Holy Grail. This is the best advice I can give anyone for basically everything. I live out of my planner. If its not on there then it will not get done. Keeping everything in one place makes it so much easier to know what is going on for that day or week. Write down the times you have important engagements and reference your planner multiple times during the day. I also suggest color coding stuff, so different things pop out to you.

Know When You You Work Best
Although this isn't specific to organization, knowing when you work best will allow you to plan your tasks to ensure that you'll be ready to work when that time comes. For me, that is in the morning. So when I have a lot of stuff to do, I'll take an early bedtime and wake up nice and early just to block enough time to get work done. Mornings is when I am most focuses. Start to discover when that time is for you and organize any meetings or errands around it so they don't interfere with your productivity.

Create a To-Do (and a to-don't) List
One thing I love about my planner is that it has a whole portion each week dedicated just for a to-do list! I can separate it into daily to-do lists or weekly lists. Writing down the tasks you want to accomplish in a day will help you to not forget them and motivate you to get them accomplished. A to-don't list works in the same way. Write down anything that may distract you like online shopping, social media, taking phone calls while working, etc. Having these in a list will hopefully help to keep you accountable and on schedule.

Wake Up Earlier
This is my go-to when I am really busy. When I know that I have a long day ahead of me or I need extra time I'll go to sleep early and wake up early in order to get the most use of my useful time. Extra time in the morning allows you a lot of opportunity to organize and prepare your day before it begins. You can get your coffee, exercise, and get started on accomplishing things.

Take Five
While the candy bar is also a great solution I'm thinking more along the lines of taking five minutes at the start and end of your day solely to put things back into their proper place and tidy up your space. This gives you two opportunities per day to take some you time and to clean up your area. Everything feels better and less hectic when your area is tidy. At the beginning of your day you can make your bed and tidy your room so that you look forward to coming home. At the end of the day you can put all your clothes in their proper place and make sure nothing is piling up.

I'd love to know how y'all stay organized!
XOXO

Monday, September 12, 2016

Junior League

Hello Friends!!

Well I joined Junior League! It was sort of on a whim, and I still am not completely sure what I got myself into. So far it seems a lot like sororities which I loved! We have monthly general meetings and other meetings as well. We were put into groups by where we work/live so that we can meet people in our area.



We had our first meeting for our new group or provisionals in August. We got to meet the people in our group and our group leader. I knew one woman going into this and she has sort of taken me in as a little sister! We have some more meetings and stuff this month so hopefully I'll get to meet more people. So far we've had happy hours and some volunteer opportunities which is great fun.

Image result for junior league
 My Junior League chapter works with women and children that have escaped abusive homes or relationships. We work a lot with those protected communities. I can't wait until I get the chance to work with some of these amazing women. My group is going to throw a Halloween party for some of the kids we work with. I'm very excited for this. I'll keep you updated as I go along.

Have you joined anything new?
XOXO

Friday, September 9, 2016

Off to North Florida!

Hello All!


I came back from West Virginia, itching to get back out to another disaster (of course hoping one doesn't occur). Then between the possible hurricane in Florida, the wildfire in California, and historic flooding in Louisiana I had the opportunity to help people again.



I will be heading out to North Florida and I will be there for at least two weeks, possibly longer. I am hoping that this will be a great learning experience for me and also a great chance to meet the amazing people n my state and my region.

If you wish to help but cannot volunteer because of the time commitment please donate:

  • please visit RedCross.org,
  • call 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) 
Thank you so much!!
XOXO

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

How to Actually Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Hello All,

I love my comfort zone. I mean really love it, just thinking about leaving it makes me feel uneasy. Sometimes I think about venturing out and I can almost wish I was one of those people that do venture out and that's when it hit me, in those moments is when you need that extra push. I have been lucky enough to have support from amazing family and friends that always try to push me out of my comfort zone.

Great people do things before they are ready.:

As they always say "magic happens outside of your comfort zone" and man is it true! As much as I wish it wasn't true because then it would be way easier to go after things you want. Getting uncomfortable is part of the deal, I guess. Then you get there and it just feels like freaking out, total anxiety, lots of tears and so many "why am I doing this to begin with" moments.

Getting uncomfortable in life literally applies to every single thing you might ever want. Every goal, desire, wish, new opportunity, future. From new relationships to new jobs to travel to important conversations to learning new skills. Discomfort is the main ingredient for success.

So how do you actually step outside your comfort zone? I have found a couple things useful when you feel ready for a change or need that extra little push.


Pick Something You Really Want
If you want something bad enough, you'll handle anything to get it. Set your focus on something that is totally worth getting uncomfortable for. Having a reason that's bigger than ourselves will keep you going even when discomfort feels uncomfortable.

Jump In
I have tried tiptoeing out of my zone and sometimes that can work, but I find that just going for it can work even better. It can be very useful to just go for it. Go big and do it on a whim. There's a lot of times that I did things and when I get asked how I got started my answer is "I did it on a whim." So listen to your whims and jump in.

Pep Talks
I'm huge on motivational quotes. I like to collect them. I print them out or put them on sticky notes or just write them in my agenda. They are perfect little pep talks for myself. It helps ground you. That even when you are uncomfortable, you're reminded that you are awesome and can do this! So go get writing.

Find a Partner in Crime
Discomfort loves company. There's many things I don't think I would have ever accomplished without really great friends to push me through my discomfort. I've made it through a lot of tough and exhilarating moments because I had my best friends by my side. So if you've wanted to sign up for that improv class or try that new workout class, bring a friend along with you!

Reframe Discomfort as a Good Thing
One of the best things you can do to get out of your comfort zone is to reframe discomfort as a really good thing. Whenever you start to feel a little scared, remind yourself that this is a good thing, bringing you to closer to the  magic. Adjusting your thoughts in this way will be one of the most important things you can do.

Above all remember once you step out of your comfort zone and get through it, you'll be encouraged to keep doing it more and more. Your discomfort is bringing you to new heights. You may even learn to like discomfort because it'll help build so much confidence that you CAN get through.

How do you leave your comfort zone?
XOXO

Monday, September 5, 2016

Morning Yoga

Hello All!

I've been trying to get my morning routine down. It was difficult to figure out how to feel good in the morning and how to wake up in the best way. I have been wanting to start exercising but I hate moving so I decided to start some yoga. I love doing yoga and it always helps me wake up and feel more at peace with my days.


So what I did was set my alarm 15 minutes earlier than I usually set it. I pretty consistently set it at the same time so 15 extra minutes didn't seem so bad. In a past post I talked about using online videos to do yoga. So I went back to that so I could get some yoga in. As I started looking through the website and finally after trying a couple yoga sessions I settled on one that I really like. Currently I am only doing about 15-20 minute sessions of yoga.


I am currently working on Hatha Yoga for the Heart Chakra. It is 20 minutes and it really helps me get going in the day. I like that it stretches my arms and chest area. The deep breathing really energizes me during the day. I feel refreshed and ready to take on my day. Something about doing yoga to wake up really gets the whole day going. Some days I feel like I should do yoga again in the evening just to relax from a long day!

Namaste
XOXO

Friday, September 2, 2016

National Suicide Prevention Month

Hello Loves,

September marks the beginning of National Suicide Prevention Month. It is an important month in which we try to raise awareness for the countless lives that have been taken by suicide and how many of them could have been saved. There are countless "I almost did" stories so I really love this year's theme of keeping to live.
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Crisis and Information Resources

  • I'm in crisis or am experiencing difficult or suicidal thoughts: National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273 TALK (8255)
  • I'm looking for more information, referrals or support: NAMI HelpLine 800-950-NAMI (6264)
  • If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or call 911 immediately.
If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or call 911 immediately. - See more at: http://www.nami.org/suicide#sthash.GE2GI37c.dpuf

World Suicide Prevention Day

On September 10, 2016 we observe World Suicide Prevention Day to reach out to those affected by suicide, raise awareness and connect individuals with suicidal ideation to treatment services. It is also important to ensure that individuals, friends and families have access to the resources they need to address suicide prevention.



XOXO