Monday, July 22, 2013

New week... New post?

Hello,

Over the weekend, I decided to make this blog private because I don't find it appropriate that I continue to share my life so publicly when I want to be able to work for the government one day.  But I explain that in the below post.  

I did not do much this weekend other than sleep, workout, watch some movies and tv.  Very casual weekend, just me and Bernadette hanging curled up on my bed or on the couch eating food like only I can... Oh and I almost forgot, I did get to go to my first bachelorette party on Friday and it was very classy not at all like they do it in the movies.



The food at the bachelorette party was phenomenal!  Yoli's, the bride, family owns a tex-mex restaurant and I have had the fortune to try some of the food there and it is phenomenal.  There was some of that at the party as well as finger sandwiches and other selections.  Not sure what was my favorite us the strawberry cake was delicious (I wish I had gotten a photo of it...).  I wasn't quite sure what to get her for her party, so I plan to give it to her later this week a little something hopefully before the wedding on Friday! It is going to be a Victoria's Secret gift card or I might just go to bed bath and beyond and get her something that she registered for.  

Let's see... The rest of the weekend I relaxed with Bernie, crossed of things on my to do list including cleaning the entire apartment and getting back into working out full time.  Hopefully today I will make it into the gym to get back on track for basketball.  It is hard though because the girls have decided to start playing pickup after their 6 am workouts so that means pickup at 7 am which is hard to do for me unless I can force myself to go to bed before midnight - like I should be doing but my body really likes to nap for several hours after work which means I'm usually up to almost 1 but this is me saying no more! Bed before midnight ideally 11 am.  Along with that I also am trying to become healthier and sort of follow this "diet" though it really isn't a diet it is just trying to be healthier... I came across it on lc's blog (here). Besides advising get 7-8 hours of sleep and going to bed before midnight to then wake up with the sun it also suggests that one does not eat 2-3 hours before going to bed.  That is a really good idea for me and I want to try to accomplish that but it is difficult if you fall asleep till 8 or 9 and then need to workout and do work...

I finally finished watching body of proof... It was ok, the lead actress is really good but the stories could be a bit forced and what not.  But it finally allowed me to start watching Veronica Mars, and I will admit I had see some episodes at some point in my life many years earlier but really don't remember the show all to well but with all the publicity it has gotten for how they are making the movie, I decided to watch the show. I am so glad that I did because it is like a combination of 90210 and psych though not as funny.

  

I also had the opportunity to see Red2 (showing at the theater right behind my apartment complex and I also discovered an Irish pub though did not go in) which was good. I'd say quite a few bangs but the actors were all awesome, I mean how could they not be and the story made more sense the the most recent die hard and I am definitely hoping to see it again with my dad in a week or so... Also, it tells you how much I love red because I was willing to pay to go to a movie theater, I literally never do that!  Especially because it is always over $10 to go which is preposterous to me... But I went this weekend and surprisingly the ticket was only $8 but still $8 too much in my opinion but oh well...

I also saw the Croods and re-watched intolerable cruelty on Netflix... Both good.  The Croods was cute and funny but pretty predictable but it made me laugh and feel good so I guess that has something to say for itself and intolerable cruelty is an oldie but goodie that has awesome actors and an interesting story though I am never quite sold on whether they truly love each other but I do think it offers an investing perspective on marriage in today's world, especially in the USA. 


I plan to get back to updating my workout schedules here to keep me on track! That will be tomorrow's post with maybe a recipe if I'm lucky enough to get that far!

By the way, do you think it will be a boy or girl for the beautiful Duchess?  I want it to be a girl but I feel like it is going to be a boy for some reason...

Thanks for reading.

With joy,

A

Sunday, July 21, 2013

So I made a decision

Hello,

So I didn't post this week because I was quite overwhelmed with personal issues (as well as work) and realized that with what I want to do, I can't be sharing my life publicly anymore.  I do enjoy blogging.  It has introduced me to new skills and I have been able to use them for the job I currently have and maybe it is yet another part of my generation/age.  I still plan to use this blog for recipes I do, places I travel too, fashion that inspires me etc... and maybe one day I will make it public again but right now it needs to be private so that I can pursue my dream of working for the government, helping my country in some way or trying to save the world in one form or another ... too much? perhaps... but this is going to be more of a place for me to vent - my own form of therapy and to let myself be OCD and also get to try out things I find on pinterest.

If you know someone who would like access to the blog just send me their email and I will probably grant them access.  It is sad because part of me really wanted to become like the blogs I love to check on a daily basis but that is not where my career/passion lies.  As my best friend T, once told me, you can have many things you appreciate and want to be but some you have to recognize as only hobbies and therefore allow them to be back burners or find ways to appreciate them without allowing them to take over your life.  I did the same thing when choosing my major, I loved sociology, anthropology and history but realized I could always read about those things but they would not necessarily get me a job so I chose Economics, which I have learned to appreciate and does happen to cross over into those other areas that interest me but still gives me an amount freedom for jobs in the future.

Thanks for reading.

With joy,

A

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

No Post Today

Hello,

So sorry I have been really overwhelmed the last few days so no post really for today!  I have re-organized my life basically, which I like to do when I feel out of control, so you should see a new post tomorrow!

Thanks for reading.

With joy,

A

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

my new bathing suits

Hello,

Well I am almost at 1000 page views which is pretty cool since I only started the blog in May (I think?) and that is pretty cool!  I feel bad because this was not the post that I wanted to do today but I had worked on this earlier and it was almost done and I have been super busy the last few days that I haven't had time to really work on the posts that I wanted to post this week.  

I have never been big on sitting by the pool but I have rather preferred to be the one playing in the pool or ocean.  That is unless I fall asleep then I am fine laying down... But over this weekend I finally got to spend some time reading while soaking up some vitamin d by one of the pools in my complex! Which was really nice and I definitely got some color... So I thought I would share some of the bathing suits I got for this summer as well as some that I want.  I haven't really had time to spend at the pool or in a place where a bathing suit is a staple so I had not invested in any new bathing suits for years... Yikes! I love my old ones but they were getting ratty and well I don't look like I did 2 years ago let alone what I looked like in high school.  So here we go:

Forever 21 - this was one of the first ones I ordered I liked that it wasn't expensive, a basic swimsuit but still had a bit of flare to it... And my mom pointed out to me that I had learned to surf on this beach (it is Kauai beach) so it is even more special to me!


Forever 21 - I did not think I was going to like this bathing suit but it has grown on me and it is a little different for me and I love to push myself to wear things that are different ...Sometimes...

Old Navy- I got this before I left for Dallas it was in the clearance section and was only $9 but again it was a little different and I needed bathing suits so I went for it because I am not a fan of spending a fortune on so little pieces of fabric.  I mean honestly, I may lust after those super expensive ones but I just can't justify purchasing them! 

Victoria's Secret - I got a different pair of bottoms because I wanted more coverage. But I do love this bathing suit though it is a bit sexy and I haven't been brave enough to wear it yet... But I recommend it because it does make you look good!
Victoria's Secret - I love this style - the bandeau - it is my favorite style and I also love this color because it makes you look tan!  I have already worn it and loved it!

wanting:

Victoria's Secret - though it doesn't appear to be in my size anymore... But there are variations of it in other styles and I think it might also be sold at the mall in fact... Going to check it out... after the other one I purchased from Victoria's Secret in a similar style turned out to look awesome! I am ready to get this one in black - as long as the price stays low! 

There is also one other one from j. Crew but unless the price drops it is not worth it to me! 

Thanks for reading!

With joy,

A

Monday, July 15, 2013

Happy Birthday Mer!

Hello,

Today is my little sister's birthday!  She is turning 20!  Which is weird...because that means I am almost 22.  You know you are getting older when your little sister is halfway through college and turning 20.  It always gets me.  Just thought I would share some photos and wish my little sister a wonderful birthday.  She really deserves it!  She is working so hard this summer to earn some money and also get experience I am really proud of her!  She also declared a major and I hope that she likes it more than I like mine!  Her's at least sounds interesting!  Mine can be interesting but it also can be super boring!  Oh well, hopefully it still means I will get a job after I graduate.

Mer, we've been stuck with each other for 20 years now.  And though you know how to drive me crazy, like only you can, you do know me better than anyone else.  It makes me sad that we aren't even in the same state anymore, and though both our communication skills could be better, we still both make the effort and I know we will hopefully get to see each other at least once before the hectic life of school starts up again.
Some say we look completely alike, others say we look nothing alike.  Personality wise, I would say we are pretty different but yet still can end up liking the same stuff!  But it is good that we are different because we push each other to do stuff that we wouldn't normally do and gets us out of our comfort zone!  I need to work on being more social, and letting loose a bit, and you definitely do try to get me to be like that when we are together.  And, I do appreciate it.  I am definitely not comfortable like that but I know you have my back and there are days where I wish I was more like you in that respect.  

I mean, you have always been able to strike a pose and make a joke out of anything!  I am probably way to serious for my age (what am I now? 45?? but seriously...) I do need to sometimes act more my age and less like the middle aged grandma that I was born to be.  Thanks for always trying to make me less serious and make me laugh or at least change the subject when I was stuck in one of my rants. 
Look at us...we are smexy! Our life in one picture = Food + Gameboy (probably pokemon) and on a sailboat -- What a life! Good times... man I do miss those times! We have to try to get the parents to take us on another sailboat excursion... just for old times sake (and before they stop paying my bills)!  
I just can't believe we have grown up.  I mean 20 means you are no longer a teenager but now a real adult... and yes you are still young and can have fun, but Mer I mean we are almost on our own and I just hope you enjoy these last two years in college because goodness, where did the last 20 go??  But I know you are going to have a blast, I guess it is me that needs to learn how to live more in the moment and enjoy college.  
By the way, I am not quite sure what I have been trying to say other than I love you and hope you have a fantastic Birthday!  You definitely deserve it! It sounded like mom did treat you to a fantastic dinner! And I hope today goes well as well!  I can't wait to see you (hopefully soon in Austin)! I always love seeing you (and I wish we could get to Indiana to see the family but it might not happen this Summer but definitely sometime soon), though it doesn't appear that you were to happy to see me in this photo I mean :)  This was our first night in the Caymans from Spring Break 2012.  I realized I don't really have any photos of you (or you and me together) since then :( how sad...  Also, thanks for putting up with me - I know I can be a handful!

Well MerBear, Happy Birthday! Hope you didn't mind this little tribute and just wanted to let you know I love you!

Happy 20th Birthday!

Thanks for reading.

With joy,

A

Friday, July 12, 2013

Friday Faves

Hello,

So I decided to start a weekly post of Friday 5 Favorites.  A few of the blogs I love do something like this sometime during the week.  And obviously I just love it! It also allows me to categorize what I have been loving this week.... Now I am going to see how it goes today with either it will be just five things or five categories... we shall see... I am thinking five categories because I am constantly pinning different stuff in so many different categories...

(1) Fashion/Blogs
The first blog I really started to follow was The Pink Peonies, and I have pretty much loved almost everyone of her looks since she started posting!  This entire outfit is on my I need it now list and it is from Savvy Nordstrom - and some of it is on sale! I hopefully am going to try it on this weekend and see if I can get it!

I don't always love the looks on this blog and since I don't have children, I can't always relate but I do love this outfit.  Every once in a while she wears something that I am like, got to get, and her outfits tend to be pretty affordable (for the most part), which I love.  Lately, I feel like the blogs that I started following because they shop at H&M, Target, Forever 21, etc. are moving away from that type of clothing and wearing much more expensive clothing that I can't even consider affording right now... and probably not for a while.  I mean it is definitely because their blogs are doing well and being invited to events and given stuff but still... But I love this outfit from Style With Shannon because the sweater is from H&M (hopefully on major sale) and the skirt is from Target (though she is wearing the petite version and I would definitely not be... I am 6 feet tall after all).  

The sister of the girl from Pink Peonies has her own blog called Ivory Lane and like Style With Shannon, I don't always like what she wears (which tends to be things I can't afford) or has to do with her beautiful daughter! But every once in a while, I do fall in love with something she posts about and that is what happened here.  I have only ever bought one thing from ASOS and it is probably because I am a bit scared to not be able to try the outfit on, and worried that I would have to spend the time to return/exchange anything but I am super tempted to buy the dress and pair of shoes that she posted about.


From Sisters in the City blog, I fell in love with this old navy shirt!  It would look great for work or for just normal times and guess what it is on sale (plus that extra sale old navy is having on top of it)!  I can't wait for it to arrive!

I found this H&M paisley on the Blog Cupcakes and Cashmere and fell in love with it!
My only concern would be that the dress might be too short... I obviously need to try it on and I hope that the sale is still going on at H&M and that it applies to this dress!  

I know that this will make it more than 5, which is what I wanted to do in this post, but since it is my first Friday Five Faves post, allow me to share my excitement over LC's July Collection for Kohls.  I am literally dying over almost all the outfits! They look incredible! I love the pieces I already have from her earlier collections but I don't trust how the clothing will fit so I won't be able to buy it online.  I need to try it on in the store!  But the collection looks incredible - I mean the blue lace dress will be mine!


(2) Music
Currently, I can't stop listening to the following songs.  I have them on single repeat but I am considering making a playlist just so I can listen to them over and over again in a nice loop.

Cazette - Beam me up

Zedd - Clarity

Basshunter -- Crash and Burn (the video is a little inappropriate in my opinion) but the song grows on you! I was like it's eh at first but now I can't stop jamming to it...

Ellie Goulding - Figure 8

Ellie Goulding - Anything Could Happen


(3) TV Shows/Movies
Duck Dynsasty - I am literally obsessed with the show and can't wait for season 4 to start in August.  I know it is bizarre, but I have this hick country girl buried deep down inside me and it has started to come out over this last year but being in Dallas, and seeing what life could be like in Austin, and just a whole bunch of other things, just makes me appreciate the show.  Though no way am I or my family like it, though sometimes I wonder if my dad would want to be someone who could live off the land like Phil, but regardless my point is the show is also just freaking hilarious.  I started watching it when I was bummed and stuffing my face, and it really cheered me up!  I highly recommend it plus the episodes are only 20 minutes so they are a quick form of entertainment.

Rizzoli & Isles -- Always a big fan of crime shows and strong female leads.  This show is always good, though I don't necessarily follow it, I was behind a bit so I was able to use last week of having no new episodes of anything but still needing to watch something and caught up!

The Heat - I was able to see the Heat recently and just loved it.  I need S to see it so she can confirm that we are adding it to the list of movies that we watch a ton of times and then become able to quote it word for word (the whole movie) which then keeps us up late at night quoting back and forth all night long in the dorm at school.

Chicago - I had never seen it so I decided to finally see it.  Music was good but I didn't necessarily love it.  I thought the acting was good though!

The Tourist -- ok so every time I mention this movie to someone, they tell me it didn't get good reviews.  This blows my mind, because I love it and the first time I saw it - I started freaking out when I learned about the twist! I don't know, it is a movie that I need to own, and I literally just love it!  But I have always been a fan of Angelina Jolie and movies that have action, twist, but still romantic.  I absolutely love it...plus I have never been to Venice and I am just dying to go.  I also found the role to be out of character for Johnny Depp but that is probably why I loved it even more!  Definitely give it a chance.


(4) Food
Ok so I have gotten a little bit bored with the food I have been eating so I finally committed myself to go grocery shopping (plus the fridge was almost empty - finally), and I looked up some recipes that can make a good amount of food which means I can eat it over a few days - jackpot.  I should have done this sooner, I mean I tried, but I just need to commit to make the food ahead of time and stop goofing off so much!

  1. I can't wait to make my friend, T's, light Alfredo like pasta recipe.  I am not going to include the recipe here because I am going to post about it later. 
  2. I am also going to make Jamaican rice (I think that is what it is called) and that will be another post.  I got the recipe from SN when we were living in Jordan and it was relatively easy, just takes a fair amount of time, so can't wait to try that as well.  It is one of those recipes though that makes a lot of food for so little cost.  
  3. This is where my pinterest habits started to help me.  Wanted to really use the items that I already have and not have to buy to many over things.  So after I make the two recipes above, I plan to make the simply sour cream chicken enchilades!  
  4. I have not eaten a salad recently, but I started to crave one today but I have used the same ingredients over and over again so I looked through my pinterest salad board and found this one. It is the Taco Salad and looks delicious.  I probably will make some alterations based on what I like to eat and not eat and probably will post my recipe of it later on.  Definitely would make a good lunch recipe though I think!
  5. I seem to be on a Mexican/tex-mex kick and my last recipe is going to be a southwest chicken and rice burrito, but just like everything else, I really want to use the ingredients I already have and make it the way I think I am going to like it so I probably will tweak it and then post it. 

(5) Reading
  • I am/have been reading From Beirut to Jerusalem for the last year and I am toward the end have over 200 pages still to go but it is just so heavy it is really hard to pick up. I would really like to finish it just to be done with it...maybe I can work on it this weekend.
  • I brought President George W. Bush's autobiography and I would really like to work my way through that once I finish the book from above.  There is no way I could read both. 
  • I also am obsessed with the Nikki Heat novels.  Yes, the ones constantly mentioned in the show Castle.  One of the writers actually wrote the books under the pseudonym of Richard Castle and they are pretty good.  All I want to do now is read the whole series on my Kindle.  They are sort of an easy read - but at least quite entertaining.
  • I need to read the new Newsweek on my Kindle.   
  • I also need to pick up my pace of working/reading through my magazine pile! It is a monstrosity right now and the Economist is what is slowing me down - I like to read it even if they are older because they cost a fortune but are so informative.  I don't have a television so I get my news from them, Newsweek and the NY Times.  

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this new super long post!

With joy,

A

Thursday, July 11, 2013

My 5 Minute Summer Makeup Regiment!

Hello,

Again, no idea if anyone read this but this is letting me organize my makeup so it can help me better do my own makeup in the morning.  I also follow a tong of blogs as I mentioned and a bunch of them did recently their summer makeup and it inspired me so this is what happens.

I literally wake up every morning, do some emails/work and eat breakfast, stretch, go for a run and then get ready for work in less than a half hour.  I literally spend the least amount of time in the morning for getting ready but that is just how it is...

Ok so I normally am almost albino pale, literally people think there is something wrong with me for most of the time but with me moving to Dallas, I realized that being that pale would not be good so I started buying Jergens for my face and body (with SPF of course) and I apply it every morning and sometimes at night - usually right after I shower and dry off.

You can find them at Walmart or most drugstores - here and here

I then always get dressed before putting makeup on because well with my luck if I did my makeup first it would then be all over my shirt/dress for the rest of the day.

So for my quick take on makeup, I always start with a tinted moisturizer (during the summer that is).  I love Laura Mercier - found here - it is definitely an investment but so worth it!  I would suggest that you should go to a Nordstrom and have they match you to the color... because it is tinted you want to make sure it is not obvious that you are wearing makeup... I am tempted to try the Olay CC cream because I have heard some pretty good things about it - that and the Garnier BB Cream.  Though the BB cream may be only good for under foundation so don't take my word on it... but I have heard you can just wear the Olay CC cream (though I would have to check to see if it had spf/sunscreen).  Here you can find them here and here

 


If you are paler, like I am for most of the year, I am a big fan of Aveeno positively radiant with SPF.  It is good for when you don't want to wear makeup but need to wear sunscreen! Big fan... plus Jennifer Anniston is the face of Aveeno now...kind of cool - love the commercials.  You can find it here.

OK so you don't need to much of either and apply it all over your face (I use my fingers but I guess you could use a sponge for this...don't feel like you have too though).

Sometimes I put on bronzer in circular pattern with a blush brush.  My current bronzer is amazing and is from Clinique but again is not too cheap but it does also have SPF so that is good too... maybe too much SPF? is that a thing?  But no I do love it...I also realized I was running out of it recently so I bought a much much cheaper option from NYC brand...I think it might be a good backup but I have become quite attached to my clinique bronzer so I might stay with that but keep the NYC brand around for emergencies.  You can find the clinique here and the NYC here.
 


My blush is a tester from clinique - my mom and I also seem to buy clinique products right when they are giving away their gift bags so for the most part my lipstick has been free and so has been my eye shadow and blush - thanks clinique!

It might be this...but it is has more of a pink tinge but isn't too much!  Again, I got it for free and is only a sample that I just swipe on my cheekbones.


I then focus on my eyes and apply eye liner - I am obsessed with Chanel's eye liner in brown (found here) and Trish McEvoy eye liner in blue (found here -- but they don't seem to have blue).  Both go on super softly which is great because I wear contacts and they don't bother them at all when I apply my eye liner super quickly.
 

I then use FLOWER mascara - which I am completely obsessed with.  FLOWER is Drew Barrymore's brand found at Walmart but despite its low cost, it is actually made with high quality ingredients and manufactured where high quality products are made.  I am obsessed and the wand is magical!  Check it out here.  But seriously I do love the brand and I own her concealor that is also a brightener and I use it more than my Laura Mercier concealor! No joke! Super incredible!  The lipstick is also quite nice!

I usually tend to finish the look with "filling in" my eyebrows.  So I was blessed with having like little to no hair on my body, but as a result my eyebrows are quite thin and I literally never have to get them waxed - I groom them about once a year no joke with a pair of tweezers (it is also why my hair on my head is so thin :( so its not all good but it is worth it to not have to shave every day).  But I just like to make sure they are defined and my friend turned me onto Smashbox Brow tool and I am obsessed.  I literally can not live without it!  You can find it here.  It is definitely worth every penny.

Usually I am done and throw my hair up and it is time to run out the door.  I don't really do anything for my lips though I do use the Body Shop's lip scrub every morning (found here) and usually then just use Smith lip balm (you can always find at Sephora but its cheaper here here) throughout the day - always have it on me all year long - it is also my basketball lucky charm that I like to have with me during the game! Literally best thing ever invented.  Though if I decide to make the time for it I usually just use one of my sample clinique lipsticks or use one of my favorite lip glosses -- Trish McEvoy lip gloss or another tester from Clinique (or even one of my remaining lip glosses from Elizabeth Arden).  But really it is usually the Trish McEvoy lip gloss (found here) that I bought last year! It is awesome!


 


I know the post was a bit long... but really the whole thing takes less than 5 minutes.  I think I have done it in more like 3 minutes.  It also isn't too hard to do in the car (though I do not to do anything other than drive when you are driving/operating a motor vehicle).

Thanks for letting me babble on... It is late - but actually just super early... my goal is to get the posts up sooner than when I have been doing but it means getting back on track and working on the posts way ahead of time!

Thanks for reading.  

With joy,

A