Journaling For the Soul

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I recently started a joint journal and sketch pad all rolled into one, as a way to express myself and experiences through two different outlets. Journaling and art can be such great tools to therapeutically externalize your feelings in a way that is laid out there in front of your eyes to see. Once they are visually in front of you, it is then easier to sort through the emotions, honor the emotions, and then begin to let them go.

One way or another you have to get out your feelings, because if you keep them internalized they can come out in a way that will hurt yourself or others. Not to mention what it does to your health! So write it out, blog it out, draw it out, or talk it out- but get it out!

A new goal of mine is to be better about expressing my emotions and to stop letting fear dictate how I live my life. So I am going to share two of my journal pages that address the fear I have of never being satisfied in this life and briefly about my recent heartbreak. I am not good at letting myself be vulnerable and keep everything close to my chest, so even admitting to myself that the breakup affected me, is a step in the right direction towards healing.

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Hope everyone spent some time focusing on themselves today! Don’t forget to be kind to yourself.

 

Winter is Here

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Fashion is funny because it’s constantly moving forward and looking to the future. So right now the fashion world is already focused on Spring, while we’re still here shivering our way through winter in this Game of Thrones level storm!

With that being said I wanted to share a wonderful new discovery of mine: fleece lined faux leather pants— with POCKETS!! If you are like me, most of the time you are more concerned with looking good, than staying warm. That is until you’re actually out in the weather and completing regretting all the life decisions that led you to standing outside waiting for your Uber in negative degree weather in a mini dress and a fake leather jacket that does nothing, but hold in the cold. Plus the whole, being 26 and off my parent’s health insurance, has me more concerned on dressing weather appropriate, than I have been in the past.

Faux leather pants and thigh high boots are two of my favorite trends right now, because not only do both items make an outfit, but they also keep you warm! Faux leather pants keep you covered, but also make it look like you put a lot of effort into your outfit, even when you pair it with an over-sized and overly comfy sweater. While thigh high boots have the sex appeal that you want on a Saturday night, but still covers a good portion on your legs. Not to mention that there multiple things that you can wear under your boots to help keep you warm and stylist, such as tights and holey jeans!

Hope everyone is staying warm and fashionable during this snow storm!

Top: Target

Pants: Amazon

Scarf: Banana Republic

Boots: Gabriel Brothers

Dating Faux Pas

Photographer: Shaun Campbell

First dates are awkward whether you are meeting for the first time or have been friends for years. So it is my advice to keep things simple to try to eliminate unnecessary anxiety! There’s nothing worse than going to a location that you’re uncomfortable at, with someone you’re not comfortable with yet.

Everyone is different, but from my personal experience here are places that I would suggest avoiding:

  • Expensive restaurants
    • Money can be a touchy subject, so it’s best to keep the cost of the date well within a budget for everyone’s sake. Then whether one person or both are paying the bill, no one is left with regret or unease when the waiter brings the check. This also helps to avoid any feelings of obligation or resentment.
  • Overly fancy places
    • No one wants to go somewhere that they can’t pronounce something on the menu or aren’t sure exactly what the etiquette is (what the heck is the three pronged fork for??) when you are trying to make a good impression.
  • The movies
    • I think it’s best to be able to talk and get to know each other before sitting in a dark theater, where there are quite possibly teenagers who are making out around you.
    • This also means that there is a set time that you have to spend with the person. So even if you meet up to talk beforehand and things are not going smoothly, you then have the obligation of spending the length of the movie together, or the awkwardness of saying that you are no longer going.

It is also important, especially when meeting someone on a dating app for a first date, to have plans that have an easy escape, without cutting things short if things are going well. Here are some suggestion for simple and fool proof first date ideas:

  • Coffee shop
    • You can take as much or as little time in a coffee shop as you want, so this leaves the date more open-ended. There’s also an out when your coffee cup is empty, if the date isn’t going well, or the option for grabbing a refill if the conversation is flowing!
    • Plus it’s cost-efficient for everyone
  • Casual drinks
    • If you partake in adult beverages, this option, like the coffee shop, allows for less time restraints, while still offering wiggle room to leave. Restaurants typically have a time limit, because even if the waiter says “no rush” when they bring you the bill, the dirty looks from the long line in the lobby says differently.
    • When choosing a place to grab drinks, I would make sure it is somewhere that is more low key, so that you can have a conversation without yelling. But still somewhere that has a decent amount of foot traffic and a good reputation to keep things safe.
    • When I grab drinks with someone new, I like that I have the option of offering to take turns grabbing the rounds. This then eliminates any first date awkwardness when it comes to picking up the tab at the end of the night.
  • Taco joints!
    • This option depends on where you live, but there’s a lot of hole-in-the-wall places to grab made-to-order tacos in Pittsburgh.
    • Casual dining places like this goes along with our theme of  not being pressed for time. There’s enough people coming in and out that it’s safe, but no one serving you, so you can linger in that side booth for awhile if your date has great stories.
    • Tacos also have a variety of options for those who have dietary restraints as well.
    • Taco dives typically play fun music too and what better conversation starter than a song coming on that’s from your middle school days. Nothing breaks the ice like having a good laugh about how awkward you were in middle school and bonding over old trends.

These are just some things that I have come to realize now that I am back in the dating game. It is hard enough to meet someone when you are an adult with work obligations, without setting yourself up for failure with an overly complicated date. I would love to hear any fun dating stories or other date suggestions, so feel free to comment below to share!

A Fairytale at Your Fingertips

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Need an affordable gown for a night out with your prince? Or you know a cost efficient bridesmaid dress that you won’t want to shove in your closet and never look at again? Well, whether it’s to celebrate your own love, someone else’s love, or just the love of yourself in a gorgeous dress- here is the perfect option! 

This Amazon steal comes in silver, black, burgundy, ivory, navy, pearl pink, red, and dusty pink! The dress is made of quality material and the lace embellishing really makes for a magic feel. The material also holds up when put it the test- it’s even Pittsburgh river tested and approved (as pictured above)!

I was able to spend a magical night twirling around the dance floor in this gown at a charity ball recently and loved the way the tulle moved. I fully support any excuse to wear a ballgown, so please share your photos with me if you decide to purchase this gown for an event or just to sit around your house feeling like royalty for a day!

Photographer for featured image: Jeremy Matthews 

New Year, New Dress, and a New Return

The end of 2017 was a rough time for me, filled with a lot of transitions, so I decided to bring in 2018 feeling confident in myself! So I splurged on a new dress, courtesy of a Black Friday promo code, from Lulus.

I have zero complaints about this number and suggest it for anyone who is going to a fancy event and wants to channel old Hollywood vibes for the night! The material was thick and of good quality, though the sequins did come off some, but that is to be expected. I am almost 5’8 and had to wear heels for the skirt to fall at the right height, so my shorter glitter lovers would have to get it hemmed. Another perk of the length- I wore extremely comfortable bootie heels so that I could dance the night away without my feet hurting, since they were invisible for the most part.

Now for my NYE fail! I wanted a fuzzy pink jacket to keep me warm, while still being fashion forward, so true to form, I ordered this style from Amazon. Despite looking adorable when thrown over my shoulders, if you actually tried to wear it as coats were intended to be, it was extremely unflattering. The coat sleeves landed about three inches above my wrists (though again I am tall), but it was also extremely boxy and despite being a small size, set unflatteringly away from my body.

I ordered two more styles (thank goodness for prime returns) to continue my hunt for the perfect trendy fuzzy jacket! I will keep everyone posted with the findings.

Hope everyone’s New Year has been as glamorous as I felt on NYE! Have a safe and healthy week.

A Little Lace

 

Happy Thursday! Wanted to share a positive experience for my first post. I am an avid Amazon shopper, so I have had items show up on my doorstep on all sides of the quality spectrum. It can be a bit of a gamble when you click that purchase button, because sometimes you end up with a product that looks nothing like the pictures you saw on the site! I plan on sharing my purchasing experiences with everyone on here and I am happy to say that this fashion forward, little red dress not only looked like the pictures, but had great quality material as well. Here is the link!

Photographer: Josh Gates