Saturday, July 8, 2017

Boho Shift Dress + Getting Back on Track

It's funny when we realize we've gone off track of our normal routine, schedule, goals, etc. we're already so far off that track it's hard to get back on. Maybe you were looking to apply for another job but got too comfortable where you're at now and lost sight of your career path. Maybe you had a fitness goal in mind but something came up and threw off your routine. Maybe you were working towards a hobby you loved but something got in the way that set it on the back burner.

Whatever it may be, take a second to think about what even sparked your interest to get to that end goal in the first place? Was it someone who motivated you? A movie, a song, a pep talk, etc.? Get back to that feeling, re-energize yourself and make the next step to get back on that track. Do something for yourself. It's so easy to get consumed in daily routines, making time for friends or a significant other that you don't put yourself first.

Maybe you won't be going full speed ahead but at least turn your mind around to get the rest of your body going back in the right direction, too.

In today's post I'm sharing this super, silky soft shift dress from Target. I love this gorgeous boho print at the neckline and hem of the dress - it's super flattering and stands out so much you barely have to think about accessories! I threw on a pair of hoop earrings and some killer heels - also from Target - and felt good to go.

How gorgeous is this print!? I am LOVING Target's selection this season. I feel like it's pretty hit or miss for me but I am definitely loving every piece they have this summer. Someone stop me! Freeze my cards!


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Olive + Gold | Taking Chances

Happy Wednesday!

A few weeks back I was feeling pretty down in the dumps. I like to think that I'm a very easy going person for the most part and try to find a silver lining and be grateful for every day + opportunity that comes my way. For a few months I started realizing how unhappy I was with my living situation, work and life balance + realizing all my friends were living in different areas of the state and even country. It's a lot to process once adult life finally hits you but if you're feeling like you've been chugging along for weeks on end, waiting for the day to come when you're going to be able to live a life different than what you have now, you need to take the first step.

Whatever it may be, a new job, a new hobby, moving out, ending or beginning a relationship, do it for yourself. It's so easy to give and give yourself until you're spread too thin. Don't lose sight of your career goals, travel ambitions, relationships you want to make or improve. I hope this tiny, simple quote brings you joy and gets you out of the dirt, wherever that may be.

Today I'm sharing this super simple yet stately date night outfit with a few of my favorite pieces for summer.

I love that H&M's basics last for years.. I purchased this top almost 4 or 5 years ago and it has been a closet staple for me. They always carry very similar cuts and styles.

I finally sucked up and bought some real almost-adult shorts (haha!) I have been in denial for years that I need longer shorts but I finally gave up and bought these super comfy midi shorts from American Eagle. I also own these white (from my previous post here).

This gorgeous BaubleBar necklace has been my favorite piece of jewelry all summer long. I love the boho style and pairing it with long, v-neck type shirts or off the shoulder tops.

These Steve Madden sandals aren't on DSW's website anymore but I was able to find them on Macy's! They are super practical for date nights when you want to be dressed up but still comfortable walking around. Funny story: I had been wearing these incorrectly for MONTHS until I was facetiming my friend Julia and we found out the bow should be in the back.. oops!


Saturday, July 1, 2017

Cotton Candy Summer + Take a Deep Breath

Every year I look forward to Geneva Swedish Days downtown.. Most people get aggravated, annoyed and claustrophobic when being in large, noisy crowds or around too many kids and families. I love seeing so many happy people coming together, relaxing after work and enjoying the sun and music. Sometimes it just takes a few moments for your brain to chill out, open your mind and see that not everything has to be your way.

You don't need to get fed up if you're walking through a crowd. You'll get there in the end. You don't need to lose your cool standing in a long line, waiting for something you're not entitled for. Enjoy the space you're in, have fun with the people you're spending time with! Take a moment to let any pent up anger go and just enjoy the summer night. Learning how to be more easy-going and care-free when it comes to the smallest of things like that can set you free.

In today's post I'm sharing this super sweet, pastel look - perfect for summer days at the carnival. This top is new at Target this month. Although I couldn't find the exact top online, there are some SUPER cute similar ones here and here. I love these cold -shoulder tops, especially with the bow-tie detail on the sleeves. This top is super flattering for small chested girls (like me! oh ya!) and dinner dates when the good Lord knows you haven't been workin' on ya core this summer.

These shorts from Express are new this month as well - exact pair here. AND 40%! Yahoo! These mid-rise shorts are super comfy and are a bit more of a sturdier fabric, so they're great for more dressed-up events. 

These flats are carried on anymore but I found some similar pairs here and here. I love these ankle strap-type flats because they're super flattering, even if your feet are, like, a yard long like mine (ha!).

Let the little things go. Enjoy the space and place you're in with the people you love.

Pictures by Alexandra Lee Photo


Thursday, June 29, 2017

Club Master

Happy Thursday!

After feeling sick for weeks upon weeks I'm finally getting back into blogging again.. Today I'm sharing a chic yet super casual summer look with some of my favorite accessories. These Ray-Ban Club Master sunglasses are so easy to pair with anything and fit my tiny child sized head perfectly.

I have worn this button down top so many times I'm surprised there aren't holes or tears in it. Button-ups are by far my favorite type of shirt to wear. They're SO comfy and I love that stores carry them in so many prints and colors. If you guessed this top is from Hollister then you guessed correctly my friend ;) Their tops are very form fitting to me which is great when you want the sleeves to be a bit more snug and the torso not too wide.

DSW doesn't list store-only items on their website BUT I was able to find these (similar) super comfy, gorgeous loafers on sale at PriceFalls for less than $50! I'm pretty picky when it comes to any closed-toe shoe but these are by far worth the cost as they've held up for awhile now and are extremely comfy.

Shop my favorites below:


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Blue Lace + Overcoming a Month of Sickness

Happy Tuesday! Today I wanted to share not only this GORGEOUS lace dress that has been dying to be worn since April (impulse buy, heh..heh..), but touch a bit on the scariness of medications, birth control and the side effects as I was struggling with my health for almost an entire month!

This super flattering eyelet detailed midi-dress from Nordstrom was EVERYWHERE this Spring. I somehow managed to snag this gorgeous blue color + in my size back in April. Naturally, I haven't had an occasion to wear it but this is one of those keep-in-your-closet-forever dresses to whip out for any last minute spring/summer events!

These nude Kelly + Katie heels from DSW are insanely comfy -- the heel isn't too high and they were such a steal this past spring. I wore them to my cousin's wedding and they were such a hit and lasted 6+ hours of driving and dance floor groovin'.

More than an entire month ago I noticed the glands on my neck were super swollen. Of course when you're sick your glands will swell, but I barely had any symptoms of the common cold. After a whole week with these rock-sized suckers I decided to go to Immediate Care to check for mono (just in case). The test results came back negative but the doctor I saw gave me some medication to help with the swelling. What I didn't point out was the bug bite on my leg that had started bruising...

After about a week this 'bug bite' had turned into a huge welt, with more spreading all over both of my legs. They were super red, looked exactly like bruises and back to Immediate Care I went as they started to feel pretty painful. This doctor diagnosed me with Erythema Nodosum, an inflammatory disorder that causes bruising on your legs. She checked for strep (negative), and then told me to make a follow up appt. with my dermatologist.

Another week went by since I couldn't get in until that next Friday (mind you this is three weekends in a row I have spent at the doctor), and by this time I could barely even walk. The pain was so awful I remember limping around from my bed to the bathroom, having such a difficult time doing the easiest tasks of going up/down the stairs, in/out my car, etc. My legs were so purple he didn't think twice to giving me steroids. 

Now, if you haven't noticed I am a tiny person. I have to work 2x as hard to keep at a healthy weight, take all my vitamins, supplements, work out, etc. I have gastritis, IBS, many allergies and was not aware of alternatives to steroids. Plus the pain was so excruciating I didn't think twice about saying no. 

Immediately I noticed the pain went away. My dermatologist also recommended I switch my birth control which was very alarming as I had been on the pill for almost 2, 3 years and never experienced any side effects until now. While these steroids were doin' their thang, down plummeted my immune system. After two weeks of being on them I finally felt 100% healthy. My friends and I decided to go paddle boarding one weekend and the next week prior to that was the most pain I had ever been in my whole life.

I ended up getting a terrible infection in my lady area from that lake. They closed it down this past weekend to test for the blue-green algae as it's known to cause skin reactions, hives, etc. and lucky me got exactly that since my immune system was so wrecked at that point.

I'm not going to get into the gross details but the pain was so awful that I cried my eyes out every time I had to urinate because I could only go in the bathtub with freezing cold water. I was using my hair dryer to clean myself and laid in bed for an entire week straight. It's OK to laugh at some of this because it was such a ridiculous experience.

While this was all going on I had a fever, chills, canker sores ALL over my mouth and uvula causing pain in swallowing anything & an allergic reaction to another medication with bumps on my legs. I hit my bottom.

I ended up getting antibiotics, more pain killers, numbing gel, the whole works just to function. I kept praying to God to give me some kind of strength to keep going. I would sit on the floor and weep, not even remembering the last time I had been outside or eaten a full meal. I remember pacing in my room every night at 3AM because I had developed such a fear of urinating I had to talk myself through it every single time.

Finally after a few days the antibiotics kicked in and my body was healing. I wanted to share this experience as I feel like these things are important to share. Maybe it's TMI, maybe it's irrelevant but I did share this on my Instagram Story and had a lot of positive feedback from other people. If you have any questions or comments please don't hesitate to share them below!

Thanks for reading -- I pray this NEVER happens to anyone. Read labels, look for other routes besides medication. Listen to your body. XOXO


Thursday, May 18, 2017

Spring to Summer Beauty Essentials

The weather is finally changing, the humidity is starting to set in and that means also swapping out beauty favorites to accommodate our changing skin texture! Today's post is all about some of my recent favorites, some new, some old, for a change in season for the warmer months ahead.

Recently I have been getting a couple questions on my tanner and this is the one I have been using for the past few weeks. I definitely prefer this to drugstore brand Jergens and St. Moritz, which I have both used religiously and I'm so glad I bit the bullet because you really can't compare the long lasting effect and blended texture of St. Tropez to the other brands. I apply 1x a week, at night and rinse off in the morning.

This blush is a gorgeous shade of burnt orange/pink, best for those with medium to dark or olive complexion. I've had this sucker for maybe two or three years and I just hit pan a couple months ago! Blends so well, the color pay off is great and definitely lasts longer for my dry skin compared to a wet-blush and beauty blender.

Y'all. This texturing spray is heaven sent. I did a quick insta story a couple weeks ago right after I had curled my hair and the volume was gorgeous. I just do a quick spritz at the end, a little at the root and then finger comb + scrunch to get that Jessie James Decker type of messy-do.

This stuff. Smells. SO good. I recently saw Emily Gemma rave about this on her blog and knew I had to try it. I love wearing my hair straight but my hair is so awfully damaged that it's hard to keep it looking healthy and shiny. Directions for this spray are to use after straightening, let sit for a few minutes before styling and voila! My hair is SO soft and looks so much shinier, without being greasy, with this spray. Perfect to tame your tresses when the humidity kicks in and you really want the precious time it took to actually STYLE your hair to pay off against the summer heat.

I love Skin Food brand, anything! I used to buy their face masks (ya know those 9.99 ones at Sephora in different colors?) for .11 each on Amazon! Ships (usually free, actually) from Korea but so worth it. I paint this mask on my nose and chin when my pores get considerably clogged from the heat, let sit and gently wipe away to avoid any redness. It's super non abrasive, great for sensitive skin and doesn't leave your face all dry.

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