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Monday, April 29, 2019

What April Taught Me.

To worry WAY LESS about what other people think. || I really wish that one of these months this lesson would stick, but I'm a work in progress. This month, though, has shown me how little other people's opinions actually matter. Do I hope people like me? Duh. Do I wish everyone approved of every choice I make? Of course. But does it matter? Nope. 

I'll say this: The more I like myself and I approve of my choices, the easier it is to care less about what other people think. So for me, those are the things I need to focus on.

That forming habits isn't about making yourself like something, it's about making yourself do something. || I heard this on an episode of Rise podcast and it was a "duh" moment for me. I guess I've always thought that habits were about making yourself enjoy something...working out or being more disciplined about your day or eating healthy or cleaning your house...and then when I don't like it, I assume it's not a habit that worked. But this mindset is so helpful. You're not trying to make yourself like something that's good for you, you're just trying to do it. 

To surround myself with people that fill me up, not drain me. || Choosing who is in your circle is one of the most important and impactful decisions you can make. And (listen to this), if you're an adult, YOU DON'T HAVE TO SPEND TIME WITH PEOPLE YOU DON'T WANT TO! What a concept! If someone is draining, or mean, or belittling, what are you doing sharing your life with them? Bye!

To enjoy the slow days as much as the action packed ones. || I love adventures and trips and a day filled to the brim with plans. But I also love a slow day with some sunshine and a good book. Going out is great, but so is cooking dinner in sweatpants with your friends. Those nights are just as good, if not better. 

The good always outweighs the bad. || Always, always, always. You've just gotta do a better job of looking for it and calling it out when you see it. 

What did this month teach you? I had so much fun seeing everyone's answers on instagram last month, so here's an insta story template for April. Tell me what you've learned! 

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Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Birthday Shopping Finds!

Since I was about 14, all I ever want for my birthday has been the same every year...I want to lay in the sun and I want to go shopping. The shopping was GOOOOD this year, and I wanted to share my favorites! 

This crochet trim maxi dress. || This is probably my favorite thing I have ever found at Forever 21. It's flowy and hippie and fits perfectly and is GORGEOUS. I already want to go back and get it in the mustard color! 
This tropical floral maxi dress. || Forever 21 is very hit or miss for me. A lot of times I walk in and everything seems very grunge and very tiny and V CONFUSING. This month though, the stars aligned and everything was right down my this dress. Makes me feel like I'm on vacation, which is basically how I always want to feel.

This smocked dress. || I can't find it online, but I got this dress in a purple and palm leaf print and it's so cute. It's perfect for throwing over a bathing suit. When I was shopping with my mom, she made the comment, "If it's not a bathing suit or something I can throw on over my bathing suit, I don't want it." 2019 SUMMER MOOD.
This striped dress. || This is the perfect simple summer dress. It's so pretty and light and easy. I wore it out to dinner and it was adorable and comfortable, which is honestly all I want in life. 

This fringe crop top. || This had a pair of matching shorts (I love a good set) but when I tried them on, they were the most unflattering thing I've ever put on my body. So instead, I paired them with these...

Wide leg pants || I honestly tried these on just for fun because they are so unlike anything I've ever worn, and I LOVED THEM. I ended up wearing this outfit out for my birthday dinner! 

This striped romper || Soft, comfortable, and colorful. It doesn't get better. Plus, rompers are great because it's a one and done, ya know?

And also this striped romper. || I have a thing for rainbow stripes and rompers, what can I say? This one is vibrant and off the shoulder and I'm gonna wear it alllll summer long. 

This hair scarf and also this one. || These scarfs are so easy and versatile, I love them. Ponytail? Scarf it. Messy bun? Tie a scarf on that. Need a headband? Scarf! 

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Monday, April 22, 2019

Goals I Accomplished This Year.

I'm a very goal-oriented person. It's incredibly motivating to me to set a goal and be able to see specific progress being made towards that specific goal. 

I didn't set very many goals over the last 365 days. I was very tired. My heart hurt a lot. 26 was a year full of some of the very best days, but it was also full of the hardest days. And when you're walking through a season of hard days, goal setting (and goal achieving) fall to the wayside. Whether that's right or wrong, I don't know, but it was true for me. 

Around my birthday I always get a bit introspective. To be honest, I always am a bit introspective, but especially around a new year of life starting. 

So anyway, I'm all introspective last week, thinking about a new year of life and all the things I'm going to accomplish. And as I was thinking back on the last year, reaching for any sort of goal I had accomplished, I got super down on myself. It would seem I barely met a single goal. It would seem like I spent so much time trying to survive, that I didn't accomplish much of anything. 

It would seem that way. 

But because I'm on a new year, new freakin' mood kick, I didn't stop there. I forced myself to look at the last 365 days and find something I had accomplished that I was proud of. And what do you know, there was plenty. Like. . .

I kept a human child alive for 365 days. I taught him things like numbers and how to say please and thank you.

I wrote lots of words. Not as much as I would have liked, and not a book like I was hoping, but I wrote poems and blog posts and letters. 

I saw several amazing concerts. I danced my heart heart to live music and sang along with my favorite songs. 

I read a lot of good books. 

I watched sunrises and sunsets. 

I survived heartbreak. Not romantic heartbreak, but the guttural, devastating feelings of a broken heart. 

I learned the art (and necessity) of self care. 

I cultivated a routine of thankfulness.

I learned immensely valuable lessons. 

I made my circle smaller. 

I let genuine people in. 

I went on a cross-country road trip with my brother. 

I got a tattoo that means a lot to me. 

I had lots of beach days with my family. 

...I could go on for a while, actually. 

These may not have been on a pretty bucket list at the beginning of the year. They may not all be extravagant or adventurous. But you know what? That's a pretty dang full list. And I'm proud of it. 

What have you accomplished in the last 365 days? Force yourself to look and find something. Force yourself to find lots of things. At the very, very least - you survived. That's an accomplishment worth a lifetime of standing ovations. But I'm confident that's not all you did. I'm sure there's much, much more. And you should be so proud. 

So tell me...what did you accomplish this year?

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Monday, April 15, 2019

T W E N T Y - S E V E N.


Dear 27, 

You've arrived! I've gotta say, I'm thrilled you're here. I've never been so excited to welcome a new year of life. How lucky I am - during a time when I was desperately craving new and fresh - to get my own personal new year. It's a gift and I'm so thankful for it.

I have high hopes for you. Maybe the highest I've ever had for a year. I hope you're full to the brim. Full of more of the good stuff. More laughing, more slow moments. More time spent however the heck I want to spend it. More speaking out about the things that matter. More time spent in the sunshine. More good books. More living - loud, bold, unapologetic living. 

I also hope you're a year of less. Less caring about things out of my control, less worrying about what other people think, less wasting my time and words on things that don't matter. 

I am full of anticipation to see what you bring. I truly believe you're going to be a year of seeing dreams coming true. 

I am thankful for you already. 

Let's do this! 
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Saturday, April 13, 2019

Birthday Coffee Date!

via MHN

YOU GUYS. I turn 27 tomorrow! That feels weird. To quote my queen Taylor Swift, "part of me still feels 18 and part of me feels 283."

Of course, I am all sorts of introspective and day-dreamy about a new year of life. I'd love to sit down with you and have coffee and chat all about it. And if we were to do that, I'd tell you...

...I am more excited for this year of my life than any other year so far. I feel like there are incredible things on the horizon. I feel strong and ready and full of motivation. It's been a long time since I've felt like this, and it makes me so happy. 

...I'd tell you all I ever want for my birthday is new clothes. I want to shop and eat delicious food and lay in the sun. A few trips this week took care of the shopping part, and I got the cutest stuff. I also got an outfit that is way out of my comfort zone, but also feels 100000% me (does that make any sense?) and I'm kind of obsessed with it. 
pants (so comfy!), top

...That 26 brought the best days and the worst days of my life. That it was broken and it was beautiful. That I feel like I'm more myself than I've ever been, but that every single bit of that was hard fought for this year. 

...That I'm treating 27 as a fresh start for nearly everything in my life. How beautiful of a gift that as I'm craving that, I get to start a new year. I'm counting myself lucky and taking advantage of my own personal new year. 
I hope you have the best weekend ever! Eat some cake or sushi for me - calories don't count on your birthday, and I feel like that can definitely just extend to you. And to get just a little bit sappy...thanks for sticking through this year with me. Love you, mean it. xo
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Wednesday, April 10, 2019

just write: 26.

to all the wins and losses 
that have filled your year, 
to every burst of laughter 
and every bitter tear. 
to each mountaintop victory
where the views took your breath away, 
to the nights spent in the valley 
where the darkness did the same. 
you grew braver, you grew stronger 
with every single one that passed
and you became a warrior 
that through every storm will last. 

I want you to know that you are enough
and I hate how those words don't do that truth justice. 
because it's true, it's so true. 
the person you were created to be, 
the person you've become through every hard day, 
every heartbreak, 
every betrayal you just knew you wouldn't survive...
that's the one. 
the one who is enough. 

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Monday, April 8, 2019

Monday Live Blog

Oh hey good morning! I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love a good live blog. It's basically a chance to just type out a whole bunch of thoughts that are completely unrelated to each other and call it a blog post. 

I'm up insanely early today, because Jack starts VPK! Or as I have been calling it when talking to him about it, baby school. Every day I've told him, "Jack loves baby school!" Even though I have a strong suspicion that when I drop him off today, he will not, in fact, be the biggest fan. 

The last few weeks have been weird, because they have been SO HARD (on a multitude of levels), but they've also left me with renewed motivation for lots of stuff in my life. I'm not sure why, or if the two are related, but I'm rolling with it. 

Speaking of new motivation, I'm back on my you-know-what with working out. I don't love working out in the moment, I just don't. I wish I was one of those people who craved it, but I'm not. I am, however, one of those people who loves it after the moment, who realizes she always feels better after working out and has decided it's just not worth it to skip it. I've been doing pure barre at home workouts, and lots of Blogilates workouts (like this ab one - short, doable, and you'll 10/10 feel it the next day). 

File this under things currently making my life easier: Walmart grocery pick up. I can wake up, make a grocery list while still under the covers, and then take my coffee and drive up so someone can load my groceries in my car for me while I'm still in my pajamas. Magic? I think so. 

I hope you have the best Monday ever. What's on your agenda today? If you need me, I'll probably be crying into my coffee (kidding, but also maybe not) because BABY SCHOOL. Kloveyoubye. 
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Friday, April 5, 2019

Amazon: What I Ordered vs. What I Got.

It's about that time of month where I bless you all with my blurry mirror selfies (you're welcome????) and also the good and bad of my Amazon finds. Fashion blogger I am not, bargain finder I am. You win some, you lose some.

I am in full blown summer mode, and my Amazon buys this month totally reflect that. Let's get to it!

This Polkadot Lace Dress || $29, free shipping & returns. A few of my favorite things in life: polka dots, lace, open backs, and THIS DRESS. This just might be my favorite thing I've ever found on Amazon. To me, it could easily be a For Love & Lemons or Free People dress. It's amazing. I got a medium (6) only because the small wasn't available for Prime and I (obviously) needed it immediately. It's super stretchy and flowy and I love it.

This blue & white romper. || $18.99, free shipping + returns. I LOVE THIS. It's so cute, so flattering, and it looks like a dress but is actually shorts. I already know I'm going to wear this a ton this summer. It's fitted enough to look good, but loose enough to be super comfortable. WIN. I got a small!

This boho yellow dress || $23, free shipping & returns. I wanted to love this so bad, but I just didn't. The color and print are so pretty, but it was just too flowy. Like, I was wearing a potato sack, ya know? Back it went. 

This FREAKIN' ADORABLE palm leaf set || $23, free shipping & returns. I. Love. This. It's so comfy and cute and tropical and I honestly will probably never take it off. I got a small. It's definitely a different color than pictured on Amazon, but I kinda love the color it is, so that's a win. 

A too-bad-to-be-pictured-loser: This silver dress. It was cheap looking, had weird seams everywhere, and the medium was so tight on my hips I thought I might rip it. Pass.

What have you found on Amazon lately?! 

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Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Spending April: A To-Do List for Adventuring Through the Month.

Have the first few days of April treated you nicely? I know we already established that April is my favorite because #birthdaymonth, but I love it for so many other reasons. It feels fresh and new and full of possibilities. Summer is right around the corner, days are longer, and it just feels like a good month, anyone else think so? 

Anyway, a fresh month means a fresh to-do list, so here are some of the things I think you should do with your new month: 

  • Watch a sunrise with your coffee and no phone. Okay, you can take a picture with your phone, but then put it away!
  • Plan a summer vacation. Whether you can afford to fly somewhere tropical or just take a weekend at home, both can be so fun if you take the time to plan them out!
  • Write an April mantra for yourself. Write it down, stick it somewhere you'll see it every day, say it out loud often. It can be as simple as "I can do it." But something encouraging and life-giving!
  • Make someone a personalized Easter basket. With their favorite candy!
  • Find a smoothie recipe you like. Look, life is all about balance. I want to be good to my body. I also am not giving up pasta or pizza anytime soon. Smoothies help me balance. It's an easy way to fit a bunch of healthy things into your day. If you can find one you like, it makes being healthy a whole lot easier. PS: If you need some suggestions, I'm your girl. 
  • Hit up the TJ Maxx candle aisle. The last three candles I've bought have been from there and they're so good! And a lot cheaper than they would be anywhere else, which is a win. 
  • Make a vacation guide for your city. If someone was visiting your town, where would you recommend they spend their vacation at? It can be easy to grow immune to all the fun stuff your town has, so sit down and make a list!
  • Make a summer reading list. 
  • And a summer bucket list. Can you tell I love summer?
  • Look at the top three things you complain about the most. Then do one of two things. One, decide to try to change them, if possible. Or two, find something about them to be thankful for, and repeat that to yourself every day. Example: Your job. Is it possible to look for new jobs right now? If so, awesome! Stop complaining, start looking! If it's not a good time for that, tell yourself every day that you're thankful for a paycheck. It can suck to make yourself be thankful for things you don't like, but it's healthy and can greatly change your mood.
  • Invest ($10) in an ice roller. The epitome of bougie on a budget. 
  • Bake cookies. Or brownies, or whatever treat you like! 
  • Do one small thing a day strictly because it makes you happy. More small happy moments in April, please. 
How will you be spending your April?

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Monday, April 1, 2019

Happy April!

Happy April! Or as I like to call it, BIRTHDAY MONTH. Birthdays are a big deal around here. Yes, I will absolutely start celebrating today, thank you so much for asking! 

If you're anything like me and you love a good fresh start, then new months that start on Mondays are your jam. Blank pages all the way around! 

Take advantage of it. Whether that means going after some crazy goal or just letting go of some crap you've been holding on to or promising to take better care of yourself and take more breaks or whatever that means to you. I'm a firm believer that you can have a fresh start whenever you want, but today is one of those times when the calendar gives you a fresh start. Let's use it. 

That thing you've promised yourself like 17 times you're gonna do, but never actually done it? April is your month! 

The book you've been wanting to read but haven't let yourself relax long enough to pick it up? This is the time!

The trip you want to plan, the friend you want to see, the book you want to write, the workout you want to try...IT. IS. YOUR. MONTH. 

Life is short and unpredictable, but look at you, lucky enough to see a fresh month. Let's use it and live it and enjoy it. 

Happy April, you babe. xo

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