Last week was one of those weeks when it felt like EVERY little thing was going wrong. Maddie (my dog) got sick and I had to go to four different pharmacies to get her prescription filled. I was pulled over by a cop for a registration mix-up. I lost my mail key. Work was difficult for a few reasons, and in the moment, it really felt like the universe was not on my side.
I generally try not to focus on the negative parts of my life, especially if I cannot change the circumstances. When it seems way too easy to focus on the negative things, I find it most helpful to refocus my attention to the positive things in my life and the things that matter most to me.
In the TedTalk, Waldinger shares how this decades-long study has found strong relationships are the foundation for a happy life. He talks about how loneliness is correlated to poor health. Waldinger also shares that the relationships don’t have to be romantic. Quality friendships can be just as valuable as a romantic relationship.
It was fascinating, and made so much sense. I have found my relationships with friends and family are the most valuable thing. When I think about the big picture, I know my life would be so different and so lonely without their support and the smiles they put on my face. The important people in my life are a huge positive force, especially on a hard day or during a difficult week.
In fifty years, the details of my difficulties will not matter. What will matter is that my relationships with family and friends remain strong, if not stronger than they are today.
“The good life is built with good relationships.” – Robert Waldinger
Here’s a little flashback for your Friday! Remember making mixed CDs on your computer, decorating them with sharpies and giving them to your friends?
Mixed CDs were the perfect way to compile your favorite songs, reflect on a specific time period and connect with friends or a loved one. But, newsflash — CDs are dying, and so are CD players (so sad). So, what is a girl to do when she wants to share a few specific songs with someone special?
I’ve discovered by trial and error, that YouTube playlists are the way to go. Over the past year, I have made several private playlists on YouTube for differnt genres of music and for different activities like working out or a road trip. With one click of a button you can easily add a YouTube video to a new or existing playlist. You can also keep your playlists private or share them with the world. And there’s no memory limit like there is with CDs! One of my all-time favorite playlists is full of songs from John Mayer, who I’ve loved since I was thirteen.
As Will and I have dated, there have been several songs that represent our relationship or make me think of him. Creating a YouTube playlist gave me a way to compile these in one place and a way to listen to them wherever I am. One of my favorite things about YouTube playlists is also that you can give the people you share it with the permission to edit the playlist and add their own songs.
Sharing a playlist like this can be a fun way to feel connected to a friend or loved one when you are apart. And of course, music has that wonderful way of taking us right back to a special moment. I’d love to hear if you’ve found a similar way to share playlists online.
Have a wonderful weekend and enjoy the beautiful fall weather. I’ll be baking up a storm with the dozens of apples I got at the orchard last weekend. Please share any favorite recipes you have.
It wasn’t until I dove into a black hole of beauty products on Amazon that I found out about fiber lash mascara. I discovered that women use this stuff instead of false eyelashes or eyelash extensions, and then I saw the before and after photos and decided I needed to try this stuff out for myself.
Before I get into my review, I’ll explain the “fiber” part of this mascara and how this stuff works. This is a three step mascara product. You use the magnifying gel first, apply the fibers and lastly apply the magnifying gel for a second time. The wand with fibers looks kind of like black cotton candy. The magnifying gel is essentially like a standard mascara you could purchase at a drugstore. The gel does seem a little creamier than other mascara I have used, and the wand is soft but substantial enough to get in between your lashes.
Overall, Mia Adria’s 3D Fiber Lash Mascara works really well. I was surprised by my results and how easy it was to use. It’s important to apply the natural fibers when the first coat of magnifying gel is still wet. The other thing that surprised me about this product was it’s staying power. The mascara lasted throughout a full workday without melting off/onto my face.
To me, with this product I feel like my eyelashes don’t really look natural so I don’t think I’ll be using it everyday. I tend to go for a pretty low maintenance, natural look, especially on work days. For $20 I think it’s definitely a great product to have on hand for a special occasion or date night. I’m no mathemetician, so I can’t be positive that this fiber mascara magnified my eyelashes by 300%. But, I think this stuff makes a noticeably bigger difference than regular mascara.
What do you think of my before and after photos? Have you ever tried anything like this? I’d love to hear if you’ve used fiber lashes before and what your experience has been with them.
Fall trends always tend to captivate me in a way that they do not in other seasons. So assuming I am not the only one in this boat, I’m sharing some trendy fall pieces that are totally affordable. From florals and suede to layers and booties, I aimed to include all the top trends and some more classic pieces.
Old Navy has several more floral prints in the dress I share above, and many are even cheaper. Target’s utility jacket and H&M’s fur vest will also double up as great pieces for wintery weather, depending on how cold your area gets.
Accessories like the windowpane scarf are also particularly affordable ways to play into trends and spice up some classic pieces in your closet. For example, the Old Navy scarf and messenger bag would pair nicely with a classic A-line navy dress. Hopefully these pieces will inspire your closet without hurting your wallet!
On another note, I hope you all had a lovely weekend. I went out to the Northern Virginia countryside on Saturday and visited an apple orchard, pumpkin patch and drive-in movie theater. The beautiful weather and gorgeous views were just what I needed after a very long work week!
Here’s to this work week going by swiftly. Please share with many an good apple recipes, too since I have way more than I know what to do with (oops!).
I was feeling adventurous when I recently got a manicure, and that lead me to finding a new favorite nail polish for fall. It’s a beautiful burnt orange, red color called Deutsch You Want Me Baby?by OPI.
I was worried at first that it might be too orange and too odd. But the voice telling me to try something new won out, and this nail polish is a major win! The color is deep and not too bright. It also has a very subtle sparkle that compliments my jewelry.
Fall has been a popular season for oxblood, burgundy and merlot nail polish. While I love those shades, I absolutely adore how this orangey-red shade is a little more unexpected and different from what’s trending. It looks especially great with navy clothes and blue jeans.
If you’re looking for more fall nail polish ideas, I’d check out Nail That Accent’s review of Essie’s 2016 nail polish collection. Essie’s Playing Koi burnt orange shade is similar to OPI’s Deutsch You Want Me Baby?, if you are looking for something similar.
Do you have any nail polish colors that you are loving this season? I’d love to hear if you have any recommendations.
Dry shampoo is the holy grail of my beauty routine. If you haven’t heard, it saves you from washing your hair everyday and keeps your hair from looking oily.
I have tried a handful of dry shampoo products, but one has continued to go above and beyond what the other dry shampoos do! Dove’s Refresh+Care Dry Shampoo is the best.
Seriously. This stuff is a game changer. It does not build up in your scalp like some similar products. The smell is light and not overwhelming. The product itself goes a long way and the dry shampoo doesn’t weigh your hair down.
If you’re thinking about trying a dry shampoo routine, do it! It is definitely worth trying out. When I add up the time throughout one week that I’d be drying my hair if I did not use dry shampoo, it adds up to about 90 minutes. This time back is huge, especially if you are not a morning person and you can sleep in a little longer!
I have even grown to prefer the texture of my hair when it is on day one or two of dry shampoo. My hair’s easier to style and often looks fuller with dry shampoo in it. I even find my hair holds curl better when it has dry shampoo in it – is that just me?! It worked great for me when I curled my hair for my cousin’s wedding in August (pictured above). I’d love to know if you use Dove’s dry shampoo as well and how you like it.
I hope your week is off to a great start too. I’ve been sick today but am thankfully starting to feel better. So, stay tuned for some fun posts later this week.
Vacation withdrawals is a real thing. I’m learning that is especially true when you come back to the DC area after a trip to Jamaica. First, I tried to wear shorts when the high temperature was 64 degrees. Then my tan started to fade and my daydreams of laying at the beach continually interfere with my daily to-do list. Finally, I realize I should probably stop replying, “No problem mon!” to people. Almost a week after this trip and I’m still struggling. I guess the better the trip, the worse the withdrawals!
Despite the reports of Hurricane Matthew hitting Jamaica and freaking out my friends and family, Will and I had a great time exploring the country. It was a perfect balance of adventure and relaxation. Thankfully, being on the west side of Jamaica in a Montego Bay put us pretty far from the hurricane’s wrath and we only had some rain late one night and early one morning. The only downside about our trip was that parts of the hotel shutdown as a precaution for the hurricane, but that really didn’t stop us from having a blast.
Our trip started off with beach time and some snorkeling. The hotel we stayed out was on a peninsula in Montego Bay, which gave us amazing views. It was also all-inclusive so we were never hungry or thirsty. I’d say the best thing we ate was the jerk chick and festivals which is basically fried dough that has some kind of amazingly delicious ingredient in it. While we spent a lot of time on the beach, hanging out and reading, we also enjoyed the pool, which had a lazy river and water slides.
On our second to last day, we climbed water falls at Dunn’s River Falls, had lunch at a beautiful outdoor Jamaican restaurant and then visited Bob Marley’s hometown. The excursion was with a group of about 15 people, and it was a phenomenal and affordable way for us to see the countryside and local parts of Jamaica. If you’re interested in booking a similar trip, I’d recommend checking out CheapCaribbean.com. We booked our trip back in May and were able to get a great deal.
I am back in the real world now, but thankfully I feel less stressed and more rejuvenated than when I left. That’s the point of vacation right?! If you are contemplating taking time off work to relax, do it and don’t feel bad about it! I like to think of it as an investment in my sanity.
I’m back in DC after a wonderful week in Jamaica. We luckily missed Hurricane Matthew’s wrath and got plenty of sun. I’ll share a recap of that trip later this week because all I can think about today is the lovely fall weather we are having and my favorite, fall fashion trend – suede!
Suede is definitely a popular trend this season, and all things suede have caught my eye. There are some really fun pieces and accessories out there (some below are even on sale!). What I like most about suede is the texture it adds to an outfit.
If this is a trend you’d like to indulge in, I’d suggest starting with an accessory like a crossbody bag or booties. These will be easy to pair with existing outfits. If you are feeling more daring or want to invest in something different, I’d try a suede skirt or blouse.
Here are some of my favorite fall fashion finds for this season:
Most of these items are faux suede, which is a good way to keep your wardrobe environmentally friendly! The Asos mini skirt, suede dresses and Modcloth booties are great deals as well. Hopefully these fashion finds inspire you to join in this fun trend.