Saturday, March 31, 2012

3 of my favorite hair products

So many people have hair products and tools that they swear by - "cult favorites," tools they've used for years, etc. Other people use hair products and tools, but aren't totally satisfied with them. I thought I'd share a few of my favorite hair products and tools I use and rate them as well!

Here are three products I regularly use, on a scale of 1 to 5. (1 being low and 5 being high).

Rating: 5

I really like this iron! It gives me waves that are more unique than regular curls and they usually stay bouncy longer (my curls often fall flat). Here's a photo of me on one of the days I waved my hair using this iron. It took me a few tries to get it down easy, because having two barrels is more different than one - you have to weave the hair in a figure-eight motion to get it to wave. There are plenty of tutorials on YouTube to help you figure it out (that's how I did!) I recommend this for beautiful, wavy hair.

Rating: 3.5
The curls made using a curling wand (an iron without the clamp) are very popular right now. I like this style, so last fall I got this curling wand from Remington - I got the smaller barrel size version. It does a great job curling the hair, however, I wish the barrel was just a tad larger! Also, since the base is a little plastic-y, sometimes a few strands of my hair get caught in it. If I could go back, I might have just spent a little extra money on a nicer version, but I'm actually pretty satisfied with the purchase. Overall, it gets the job done!

Rating: 5
I LOVE THIS STUFF. It is pretty pricey - $40 per bottle - but a little goes a long way. (Apparently on the website I linked to has it on sale for over 1/2 off, which is awesome). I started using the oil in August, and even though I use it on my hair often, I still have a lot left! Just a dime-sized dab of the vitamin E-loaded oil is all you need to smooth the ends and bottom half of your hair, and voila! Shiny, silky hair. I usually put it in before I blow-dry my hair but it will work on both wet and dry hair. HUGE recommendation!

Anyone else use these products? What are your favorites? Any recommendations for me? (I'd love to know!)


Thursday, March 29, 2012


My favorite pattern is checkers. I like checkered bedding, notebooks, and especially clothes! It is a classic print that is reincarted every season. I enjoy the pattern year-round, but love seeing the pattern more often in the spring.

You can never go wrong with a traditional, checkered button-down! A button-down in blue gingham has been on my shopping list for a while now, but other colors like green and light pink other good options.

Branching out from button-downs is nice too! I love this Marc Jacobs skirt - perfect for work or dressing up - and this retro swimsuit is adorable.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

lead fall [rock climbing]

I recently took my practice lead fall in rock climbing! I did the practice lead fall in class about a year ago, and it was a lot of fun. I thought it was going to be so easy compared to last year, when I was freaking out before letting myself fall.

But this time, I still freaked out before I fell. It's a mind thing, similar to a roller coaster - you know you'll be fine, be safe, have fun, and experience the adrenaline rush. When it's over you want to do it again!

The climb up was easy. The instructor belayed me and we used a sturdy lead rope. I was familiar with the simple route. However, when I got up to the last clip, the adrenaline started to kick in. Nervous adrenaline. It took about a minute and a half for me to actually let go. It was one of those things where I told my fingers to release, but they still held tight.

Here's the video - it's slightly (very) embarrassing during my freakout, but if you want to see the fall, go to 3:47!

On the way up, I was thinking Oh, this is so easy. When I was at the point where I was about to fall? Little shrieks of EEeeeEeeeEee and sounds that didn't even sound like me escape from my mouth! Protesting no, no, no! and I don't like this part! were little excuses that factored into my fear of falling. Then came a slight shriek during the fall followed by exciting adrenaline and the desire to do it all over again. Then I say "and it's all on video" and am weirded-out watching it because it's weird hearing what my voice sounds like on camera.

Nevertheless, I did it! I'm excited to do more lead climbing, now that I've done the practice fall!


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

turquoise hi-low shirt

Shirt: Free People Jeans: DL 1961 Flats, beaded bracelets (right wrist): Nordstrom Bracelets (left wrist): F21 Watch: Michael Kors

Today I am wearing a "hi-low shirt." The style is also known as the "mullet." Shirts, skirts, and dresses with a shorter cut in the front and a longer cut in the back are very trendy right now. I decided to subtly dip a toe into the trend with this shirt - which would be perfect with leggings as well. Here are a few dresses and skirts in the style:

I wonder how long this trend will last! I don't mind it for the season, as long as the mullet haircut doesn't come back in style...What do you think of the hi-low/mullet trend?


Monday, March 26, 2012

how to: happy ways to pull yourself out of a funk

Yesterday was a weird day. I was kind of in a funk. I've been busier than usual lately, and things are starting to get to me. I love doing all the things that I do. Yesterday, however, I was tired and cranky, and really not liking my homework for this one particular class that I will not mention on here but rhymes with fistory.

Who likes to be in a funk?! No one! Or, at least, I think no one does. I don't. It's not fun. I enjoy being happy. That being said, here's a list of things you can do in case you are feeling weird and want to pull yourself out of it:

Watch funny YouTube videos. Last night I watched "David After Dentist" for the first time in a long time. I dare you not to laugh.
"Is this real life?"

Peruse Pinterest or Tumblr and look at all the nice, pretty pictures. Cool photography, fashion, cute pets - whatever makes you smile - is bound to be floating around the web!

I have an aromatherapy stress relief candle from Bath & Body Works that I love! It smells great and seems to calm me.

Talk to friends. Get your emotions off your chest with a support system that you trust. Even if you hang out like normal, having a regular conversation and chatting will lift your mood.

Distract yourself - paint your nails, call a family member, or watch a TV show.

Read a book. Reading basically forces you to connect with the characters to stimulate comprehension, so you're bound to take your mind off of something negative for a little while.

Exercise! Remember how I said I have never left a Zumba class in a bad mood?! Any type of exercise, whether it be going to the gym, a run, a fitness class, playing tag with kids, walking the dog, etc., will create endorphins, keep you healthy, and boost your mood!
Think about future goals and plan steps to achieve them. Doing this makes me excited for my future plans (like moving to California after graduation!)

Color! Get a piece of paper and draw, doodle, or paint something. It doesn't have to be good. But that doesn't mean it won't be fun!

Get of the house/apartment/dorm. Take part of the day to clear your mind and go anywhere.

Take a nice, long, warm shower. So relaxing. Need I say more?

Hope these tips help! Feel free to add any tips or things you do to pull yourself out of a funk. 
Have a wonderful, fantastic, happy day. :)


Sunday, March 25, 2012

random post about pets

While I was perusing Tumblr recently, I saw this adorable picture of a puppy:
It's wittle and cute and makes me want to talk in a wittle baby/pet voice. I kind of want a dog now! Isn't it funny how when you see a cute, small animal you sometimes have the urge to get one as a pet? ...Or is that just me? I've never had a pet. I think about if I got one, I'd probably want a dog, but dogs take a ton of work and a lot of time (that I don't have). My apartment is also a pet-free building, too. When I babysit, I'm not always the biggest fan of having a dog around. So why would I want to get one as a pet? I don't know, maybe someday - if it's as cute as that lil' guy.


Saturday, March 24, 2012

back to basics [music]

I don't know if this title totally makes for this post, but bear with me! So over Christmas Break, my brother asked me what type of music I had been listening to lately. I responded, "Uh, the new Coldplay, M83, and ... I don't know, some stuff on the radio." One thing my brother and I had growing up was a similar taste in music. He would tell me all about the cool new bands - I was totally into the pop-punk phase in junior high - and I always was listening to music on the bus. (Ha, the days before I was old enough to drive.)

My brother was shocked that I had lost my excitement for music. I was shocked too - it was weird that I hadn't been listening to my good ol' faves. Part of it might be switching to a new computer, and having to re-download all my music. I forget about some artists I don't listen to often.

Recently, I went "back to basics" (make sense now?) and downloaded some music from the bands I used to listen to in junior high and high school. Bonus was that most of them had come out with new music since then!

Here is my a new playlist I made with a mix of older songs and newer ones. This is more of my personal music taste; maybe you will like some of these songs too!


Friday, March 23, 2012

pink & blue

Shirt: F21 Tank: Nordstrom Jeans: GJG Denim Ring: Swank Bracelets: New Look London Flats: Report

I am still waiting for spring to come to Spokane, so I wore pastels today! I wore the striped cozy shirt with the pink-coral colored jeans and added sparkly silver flats and accessories. The cheery colors helped wake me up in a tired daze after getting only a few hours of sleep. (Worth it for The Hunger Games midnight show!)


Thursday, March 22, 2012

Happy 74th Annual Hunger Games! May the Odds be Ever in Your Favor

Yes, I know I completely nerd-ed out on the post title.

I'm going to see the midnight premiere tonight. I can't wait.

I had known that The Hunger Games series had been popular for a while, so I bought the book back in November. I didn't end up reading it until February though, but now I am totally addicted! I am currently on the third and last installment of the series. I don't want to read the last one too quickly because I don't want it to end!
My enthusiasm/excitement/obsession with this series makes me feel like a 14-year-old. At least I'm not dressing up or anything tonight. (Not that there's anything wrong with that...)

The movie has supposedly been projected to make between $125-$150 million this weekend, which is a lot, especially considering this is not a holiday weekend. 

If you're trying to kill time between now and midnight, there is this fun website where you can find out your "hunger name." Mine is Cup Ragbone.

Anyways. Just devoted a whole blog post to contribute to the current craze.

Who else is going to see the movie this weekend? Are you team Peeta or Gale? I'm team Peeta. ;)


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

mightybell - steps for following your dreams


"I love my job."

That's what everyone's career dream is, right? To do work that they love to do? To enjoy their time at work and leave feeling satisfied? That's what I want out of a job.

I'm still in school, but I'm currently applying and interviewing for internships. I want to learn more about my field of study and see what I really want to do! I truly enjoy the classes I'm taking for my majors and minors right now, and I am ready to apply what I learned to the real world. While I'm still figuring out my next internship, I am also thinking long-term. What do I want to do after graduation? Where do I want to live? Do I want to work in one specific field, work with people, or start my own business?

So many unanswered questions - which is exciting! (Now, if I were a senior, these questions would probably be really nerve-wracking. Good thing I am not quite there yet.)

I found out about Mightybell recently, which is a social site to create goals and experiences and organize big goals into incremental steps. It is pretty simple and easy to use. I really like sites like this that give tips on thinking about the big picture, but Mightybell is the most unique one I've found yet! Also, most "experiences" are free. Another plus.
Example of a question the site asks to fit an experience to your interests
The "experience" I am participating in is called Kristen Walker's Levo League's 7 Steps to Turn Your Passion into a Full-Time Career. That sounds pretty nice, right?

Step one is about visualizing your end goal. Step one mentions, "Imagine the clothes you would wear and the layout of your dream office. Take a mental snapshot of your business card, and feel the pride that will surge through you when you hand it to people saying, 'I'm a insert your dream job title.'" You can't see the next steps until you've completed the previous one! So I currently don't know what steps 3-7 are.

So far, I find this 7-step experience really motivating. It makes me excited to keep learning and growing, and hopefully one day, if my end goal is still the same, I will make my vision come true. My dreams? They're going to happen. I know it.

Interested in signing up too? Click this link to go to the site.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

spring break in photos

Last week, I went to visit my best friend in Colorado over spring break. It was so warm that week! I laid out and even got a tan (crossing my fingers it will last a couple more months). We hung out just like old times, met each other's friends that live in the area, and ate ice cream. For some reason many of these photos involve was too pretty looking to not photograph! Haha.

...we took photos on the gorgeous sunny day
....went out to eat
I think this was the best breakfast I've ever eaten. It was almost sad being too full to eat it all...
A red velvet pancake. Yes, you read that right. our nails done and took pics on photobooth
...had Starbucks almost every day

Now it's back to reality and rain. It's the first day of spring (yay!) but the weather is far from it here - pouring rain and wind. I miss the Colorado sun so much, but more-so my bestie! I couldn't have had a better spring break. It was the perfect mixture of fun and relaxation.


Monday, March 19, 2012

colorful neutrals

Jacket: Vivid Plaid shirt: Madewell Striped shirt: Nordstrom Pants: F21 Boots: me Too Ring: Kate Spade

Olive, brown, and navy are all neutrals, but when paired together, they work and mix things up! These colors basically match anything, so I added the red in the shirt and ring to liven up the sort-of dreary colors.

Short post today, I need to head to class!


Sunday, March 18, 2012

fruit & beaches

Photos of fruit and beautiful beaches

make me want summer.


Links to photo sources can be found on my Tumblr

Friday, March 16, 2012

Took this photo right before I went into ice cream Heaven

Last night my friend Jenn and I got these ice cream sandwiches from Cold Stone. I saw them in the freezer case next to the cakes, and apparently you can buy them separately! So we each got one to bring home and eat while watching Footloose. (I really liked that movie, by the way. I had heard both good and bad reviews so I wanted to see it.)

Anyways, these are so. darn. good.

I recommend getting one if you stop by Cold Stone - we got the kind that had the chocolate chips cookies with cake batter ice cream covered in sprinkles. Yeah, I think I'll pass on making any of the St. Patrick's Day recipes I wrote about yesterday because I'm still in a sugar coma from last night. And I need to go to the gym now.

Happy Friday!


Thursday, March 15, 2012

st. patty's day recipes

When I went to Ireland last summer, the food was amazing! It was a nice break from Italian pasta and paninis - which were also amazing - and it was the first time I had regular eggs and potatoes in a while. With St. Patrick's Day coming up this weekend, I've seen plenty of recipes popping up around the web that are Irish or Irish-inspired!

While these would be good any time of the year, why not whip up a thing or two to get into the holiday spirit?

"Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Bailey's Irish Cream Cheese Frosting"
click here for the image source and recipe!

Doesn't the name alone just sound wonderful?! Not only does Bailey's Irish Cream taste like the alcoholic equivalent to a chocolate milkshake, but the cupcakes are under 200 calories each! These would be perfect to bring to a party.

Mini Shepherd's Pies
Mini Shepherd’s Pies
click here for the image source and recipe!

I love Shepherd's Pie. From its looks, it may not seem very appetizing, but I promise - it tastes good! Since a whole Shepherd's Pie is pretty heavy, these mini pies are a much lighter alternative.

"Hint O' Mint" Chocolate Chip Cookies

click here for the image source and recipe!

I recently saw the mint chocolate M&Ms at the grocery store and was excited to see a recipe that uses them! I haven't tried them, but they sound delicious baked into a cookie. This recipe also shows that the cookies would be great as a sweet (sweeter?) sandwich, putting mint ice cream in between two cookies!

Irish Soda Bread
irish soda bread 
click here for the image source and recipe!

The soda bread I tried in Ireland didn't have raisins in it, so I think you can leave those out if you want. My first meal in Ireland was fresh salmon on soda bread with coleslaw. It was so good! Click here for a gluten-free soda bread recipe.

I'll be really busy with dance and traveling this weekend, so I don't know if I'll have time to make any of these. If I do, however, I'd love to try the cupcakes. If you've tried any of these or will be making them soon, let me know how they turn out!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

st. patrick's day

I don't have much green clothing, and am usually at a loss for what to wear on St. Patrick's Day! (Well, with this new-ish dress, I guess I have an option...) The holiday usually sneaks up on me, so I thought I'd do a little preparation beforehand! If you want to go green head-to-toe or just add a pop of the color here and there, I have a few choices to start with if you're stumped!

L to R: Tank, jeans, leggings, shirt



I love the J. Crew jeans. I'd wear them any time of the year! I think they'd be cute with a contrasting skinny belt in pink, yellow, or white. I also like the boat shoes, of course ;) - they're the perfect way to get through a rainy spring with some color. If you're going to a costume party, I think this tutu is adorable. I also like the nail polish, because you can't beat the price ($2.80)!


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

seeing the sun

Sunglasses, hoodie: H&M Shorts: Rock & Republic Bracelets: ASOS Shoes: Sperry

This outfit isn't particularly interesting, but I was so excited to be wearing shorts that I had to post it! Being in  Denver, the altitude makes the sun feel a little warmer. I spent a very relaxing morning laying out and reading The Hunger Games book 2 (anyone else obsessed with the series?). I might look a little out of place wearing shorts in March, but it is currently snowing in Spokane so I need to get my fix before I go back to school. I restrained myself from wearing flip flops and wore my Sperrys to not look too out of place.

Also, I got this jacket at H&M, but I just realized it looks like an American Apparel knockoff. Oops? Haha. Whatever, I like the color. It goes nicely with the tribal bracelets! It is a perfect example of a hoodie I'd throw on in the summer when it gets chilly at night. I can not WAIT for summer weather! Who's with me on that one?!


Monday, March 12, 2012

adventures in colorado, year 2

I am visiting my best friend this week for spring break! We decided to take some photos outside on the sunny (but very windy) day!

What I'm wearing
Dress: Swank Cardigan, earrings: Nordstrom Flats: Divided Watch: Michael Kors

Jenn's outfit (isn't it cute?)
Dress: Urban Outfitters Earrings: Target Boots: Aldo Jacket (below): Nordstrom Ring: F21

Here are some more photos from the day:

We haven't seen each other in over a year - since last spring break - but it's amazing how nothing has changed! Well, a lot has happened over the year, but when we started talking, it was like we had never been apart. That's when you know it's BFFs, best friends forever!