Sunday, June 28, 2015

Movie Date

Last night I went to see Inside Out with my friends Dan and Greg. First, I LOVED the movie!! I laughed so hard and then started crying. I highly recommend going to see it! It'd be so great to take little kids to go see, but it's still such a wonderful movie for 24 year olds as well (pretty sure there were people my grandma's age there without children too)!

Also, can we talk about the weather yesterday? If you're not in southwest Ohio, let me just tell you about it: The high was 67. That's right - 67 degrees!! It's been consistently in the mid 80s for so long. I'm not sure if it's from all the rain or what, but I loved it. I'm all for summer weather - shorts, tank tops, flip flops, swim suits - but I love cool weather. I thrive in it really. So naturally I used this random cool day to wear a new scarf I recently bought. I also used this three person date as an excuse to wear pink (not that I think you ever need an excuse)!

Charming Charlie scarf - here's a similar one // Revlon lipstick // Wal-Mart earrings - here's a similar pair

Goody's top - here's a similar one // American Eagle jeggings (my rinse is currently on sale!) // Similar scarf // Charming Charlie watch // Tommy Hilfiger sandals (I got these from TJ Maxx) - here's a similar pair


Side note: I'm moving this week. Any and all prayers for a smooth move are greatly appreciated! Especially for poor little Bug who is freaking out at all the boxes piling up in her room. She's just not sure what to think of everything changing!


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Real Talk - My Weight

I wanted this blog to be a place where I could be real. I love following fashion and lifestyle blogs, but so many times they seem like they have it all together. I'm the first to admit that I do not have it all together. I struggle with many things but one of my biggest struggles is my weight.

I've never been thin. Like, ever. And for the most part I've been okay with that. I was pretty active playing softball for 10 years so I stayed in decent shape, but I was never skinny by any means. When I was about 16, I stopped playing softball, started gaining weight, and Mother Nature stopped visiting. Softball had kept me in shape, but unfortunately show choir did not. I finally went to the gynecologist to see what was up thanks to my mom's gentle suggestion (but really more like forcing me to go). Eventually, I was told I have polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Basically my ovaries have a bunch of cysts on them (ew right?). PCOS isn't super serious, but it can lead to more serious problems. For me, it means I'm insulin dependent (aka pre-diabetic) and I have the hardest time losing weight.

I've been taking birth control ever since then. I've been told that if I want to stop taking it, I'll need to lose weight. But guys, I love food. So much. Pasta and ice cream were my jam! So every year after going back for a yearly check-up, I'd try to jump back on the healthy wagon only to fall off soon after. I used nearly every excuse in the book. I'm too poor to buy healthy food. I have too much homework to go to the gym. I don't want to look like an idiot who can't run. It's too hot. It's too cold. I'm too tired so I'll go tomorrow. Blah blah blah.

But finally this past December, a friend and I made a commitment to go to the gym. She was newly engaged and I was tired of hearing my doctor tell me the same thing every year (lose weight woman!), so we each had our motivation. Once January came, we got really good at making it to the gym 4-5 days a week. We'd do cardio and lift weights. We even completed a swimming challenge! I know that eating differently is more important than exercising though, and I've done really well at cutting carbs - I don't remember when I last made pasta! We kept this routine up all semester. That's nearly 4 1/2 months of working out and eating (decently) healthy. I should have lost weight, right?

That's a negative ghost rider. None of my clothes fit any differently. I'm not a fan of weighing myself so I always just go by how my clothes fit (my doctor likes to reinforce the fact that I'm not defined by the number on the scale too - she's great). Last week I went back to the doctor for my yearly check-up. I think I scared her when I said "we need to talk" as soon as she walked in the exam room. I told her everything I've been doing and how honestly frustrated I am. Of course she said that I can always eat healthier (aka don't eat as much ice cream), but she agreed that my habits are the best they've ever been and that yes, I should be losing weight. Thankfully she's invested in me and ordered a bunch of blood tests: a thyroid panel (it runs in my family so I have no clue why this has never been done), a diabetes test, and bunch of others that I can't remember.

I'd love to tell you that I know what's wrong with me, but I still haven't heard from her. I'm not sure about the timeline on blood tests, so I'm hoping I'll hear back soon. It's weird but I almost want something to be wrong because at least then I'd have an answer! But if all my tests come back fine, then it's back to the brainstorm board.

Regardless of what happens, I definitely feel healthier. I can run two miles without feeling like dying and my food choices are better than ever before (I actually have money to spend on healthy food!). One of the best things that's happened is that the Lord has been so sweet and has brought people into my life who also have the same goal: just be healthy! I'm not perfect all the time, but I'm trying really hard. This has been a journey nearly 9 years in the making and I'm just now getting up the courage to start it. So here's to healthy habits leading to a healthy life!


Friday, June 12, 2015

Summer Bucket List

I love summer. I complain about heat and humidity all the time, but I love the freedom that summer brings. I'm in school year round (no break, I know it's tragic), but my schedule is much more flexible. That's why I wanted to make a summer bucket list. (I may or may not have added things I've already done just to feel good about crossing something off! Also since I'm technically almost a month into my summer.)

Go canoeing // I love the laziness of floating down a lazy river with a cooler of beer and snacks

Get back into my workout routine // I worked out 4-5 days a week during school - that needs to happen again

Read 5 books // I read science articles all day so I will gladly welcome the break

Visit at least two new places I've never been // I definitely have a travel bug that I don't think will be going away any time soon

Make something out of the pallet in my closet // Yes, I have a pallet in my closet - I found it by the dumpster over a year ago and I still need to do something with it

Spend a day on a lake // I miss spending every other weekend on Lake Monroe - I need to be back on a lake soon

Go back to the Western & Southern Open // I saw Federer, Djokovic, Murray, and many others either play or practice as well as getting a picture with Murray (kind of) and I would love to do that again

Stick to my budget for an entire month // I'm decently good at this but I know I can do better

 photo BlogSig_zpsxyetefb3.png

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Tropical Morning Smoothie

I came across this smoothie recipe over on Southern Curls and Pearls. All I needed to read was "smoothie" and I was all in. Her recipe makes enough for 2 smoothies, but since I live alone and really don't need to drink 2 whole smoothies in the morning, I cut the recipe more or less in half.

I'm usually one for using exact measurements, but for some reason making this smoothie I just kind of eyeball everything. You can check out the original recipe here. But for those of you who eyeball things like me, here's a breakdown of approximately how I make this delicious drink:

First thing's first: gather your ingredients.
Frozen pineapple
Frozen mango
Coconut yogurt
Orange juice
Protein powder

I use one scoop of protein powder in my smoothie. (Don't shy away from protein powder! I don't get much protein from food, so this is a great way of getting it.) I'm currently using Aria protein powder for women. Thoughts on this brand? Meh. It leaves everything pretty gritty. My absolute favorite brand is Pure Protein Whey Protein in Vanilla Cream Shake. It blends so well - you can't even taste it!

 Moving on! I cover the bottom of the blender in mango chunks, then cover those in pineapple chunks. Really precise, right? You can always tweak it to suit your taste - more of a mango person? Don't use as much pineapple.
After that, I add a whole thing of coconut greek yogurt. I happened to have Yoplait on hand right now, but I'm also a fan of Light & Fit.
Then I add orange juice. I usually fill the blender until the juice is to the 3 cup mark. If I want it thicker, I use less juice. If I want it thinner, I use more juice. It all depends on my mood!

Blend it all together, pour into a tumbler with a straw, and you're done!



Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Ladies' Room by Carolyn Brown

I got a Kindle a couple months ago and signed up for Kindle Unlimited. I started browsing titles that I could read for "free" (unlimited is $9.99 a month but it's better than buying every book I want to read). My taste in books is interesting. I love anything fantasy/magical (think Harry Potter and the like), romantic (I give Nicholas Sparks a lot of crap but I can't get enough of his books), to comical autobiographies (Mindy Kaling cracks me up). So basically I'll read just about anything.

But then I came across this book: The Ladies' Room by Carolyn Brown. It's about a woman named Trudy who overhears something in the ladies' room at her great-aunt's funeral that changes her life. Her journey from that point on is funny, heartbreaking, and very empowering. The way she reacts to everything is almost exactly how I can see myself reacting.

I said this book was empowering. And it is! I found myself wanting to high five Trudy so many times while reading this book. I had lots of "you go girl" moments. Granted some of the struggles she faces are ones I have never faced, there's some things she deals with that I'm like "yaaaasssss I know that!!"

I read this book pretty quickly - within a week I think? I highly recommend it to anyone. It'd be great for a college girl just as much as it'd be great for my mom (actually, mom if you're reading this, I really think you should read it...just saying). 

If you've already read it, or if you end up reading it, let me know what you think!

 photo BlogSig_zpsxyetefb3.png

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Instagram Round-Up

I feel like I've been swamped lately but at the same time I've had tons of free time. Obviously it can't be both. I'd say I've just been feeling swamped because of everything I want to get done in the next month. Between cleaning out my apartment to move, to deciding how to redecorate, to actually getting good research done, I'm feeling overwhelmed. Which is why I haven't been posting much lately - my bad. I've posted 4 outfits recently on Instagram but not on here. So I thought I'd put them all in one post! It's a 4-for-1!

 I tried my best to find everything online, but a lot of stuff either isn't sold online (looking at you Walmart) or I bought a few seasons ago and just isn't being sold. I linked similar items if that's the case though!


My cat cracks me!
J.Crew top - here's one similar one and another one // American Eagle jeans // Target flats - here's two similar pairs here and here // Premier Designs necklace (this one is from the 2014-2015 Collection - if you need a jeweler let me know and I'll hook you up with one!) // Walmart bracelet - not sold online but here's a similar one from Charming Charlie

LC Lauren Conrad top - they don't have the arrows pattern online but here's a link to the rest of patterns (I'm obsessed with this top) // Old Navy shorts // Walmart sandals - they're not online and mine are kind of old, but here's a cute pair for $9! // Old Navy necklace - I bought it in the store because their selection online is pitiful but here's a similar one from Charming Charlie // Walmart bracelet - here's a similar one // Francesca's bracelet - here's a similar one

Probably my most comfortable outfit!
Old Navy chambray top - not quite the same but super similar // Old Navy t-shirt // Old Navy pants // Old Navy necklace - similar from Charming Charlie // Walmart bracelet - similar from Charming Charlie // Francesca's bracelet - here's a similar one // Target sandals

Kohl's t-shirt // Walmart pants - these are super old but here's a pair from Old Navy // Zulilly scarf - once the sale is over, the product is gone, but here's a cute one from Charming Charlie // JC Penney jacket - it's long gone, but here's a similar one from New York & Co // Charming Charlie watch and bracelet - here's a similar one // Target sandals

 photo BlogSig_zpsxyetefb3.png

Subscribe to my mailing list for exclusive content, recap of recent posts, plus other fun and exciting things!

* indicates required