Downsizing Your Purse And What You Need To Know

As women, we rely on our purses to carry everything and anything we need on a daily basis. Women's pants pockets just won't do and rarely do we want to carry around a backpack. I have always owned a decent size purse and always thought that bigger is better, after all I do carry my whole life in there!

Well this all seemingly changed when K gave me one of my Christmas gifts early. He had panicked about the size of the purse he had just received in the mail, he decided to give it to me early so that I would still have enough time to exchange it before Christmas. That poor man, I don't think he understands that I am happy with whatever he would get me and could never imagine exchanging something that didn't "work for me".

He hesitantly gave me my gift after I tried my hardest to convince him that the size of whatever he got me would matter none. I saw the purse and immediately fell in love. Sure it was probably the smallest purse I had ever received and only half the size of my old one,
but it was classy and beautiful, he knew my taste so well.

Of course K had also bought a wallet to go along with it, that now, after seeing the actual size of the purse, he realized it would not fit. K told me we can either exchange the purse or the wallet. I was hesitant about the size of the purse, would I really be able to downsize and fit all the things I needed into the bag?

I had to take steps to assess the situation,

1. Empty contents of purse

2. Find out that over 3/4 of the stuff I lug around everyday holds no purpose in my day to day life

3. Fill new purse with contents that are actually necessary

After all this was said and done, I realized that it is totally realistic to use this purse everyday. K and I decided it would be wise to exchange the wallet he bought for a cute little card holder instead. 

After a quick trip to Charming Charlie's (Which by the way is probably the most visually pleasing store with all their color coded tables.) I was all ready to go. After the first day of lugging my new purse around, I felt significantly lighter as a whole. Since it is a cross-body purse, it didn't put it's whole weight on to my shoulder and the whole purse only weighs like a pound. I felt as light as a feather for the first few days although I couldn't shake the feeling that I was missing something. How sad it was that I felt so scattered with less weight with me.

It is truly amazing that as women, we can have a purse of any size and fill it to the brim with things we don't need. The smaller the purse the less useless crap I had to carry around all day. On the off chance that I ever have to bring my tablet or laptop anywhere I can always bring an extra tote with me. I truly believe a smaller purse has made not only myself feel lighter, but my mind as well without all the extra clutter with me all the time, and my shoulder thanks me as well.

Now all I carry around is my face powder, lip stain, a few pens, and my new and improved smaller wallet. To top it all off I still have some room to spare!

So for those of you who have considered buying a smaller purse, I urge you to try it. You have nothing to lose and remember nothing is permanent, you can always adapt to whatever works for you!


Studio 35 Beauty Toning Shampoo Review

Ahh the moments when you dye your hair at home and wonder if the finished product will come out completely amazing or if you hair will leave you wondering why your roots came out looking a different color than the rest of your hair, even if you followed the directions down to the T. Well my hair came out leaving more to be desired. My roots had a brassy tint to them as I expected they would, seeing as how I hadn't dyed my hair in a good 5 or 6 months. 

Off to the Walgreens I went to look for something to remedy my hair probs. I stumbled across two different toning shampoos, I guess Walgreens wasn't the place to go if you were looking for a extensive selection of hair products. I found a Clairol brand at 11 dollars and then this "compare to Clairol" Studio 35 Beauty one for 6.99. My inner cheapskate couldn't imagine spending a whole 4 dollars more on the name brand one so I went with the studio 35 one. I tried to look up reviews for this particular product and to my suprise I found none! Zero! Zip! Nada! Yet this particular one was the only one left on the shelf. 

 On my way out I saw a package deal for two of these for 8 dollars and thought to myself what a great day this was turning out to be. Not only was this "hopefully" going to solve all my brassiness issues but I just practically got two for the price of one!

I couldn't even find a description on this product online but I figured it was pretty self explanatory.

How did I like it?

The directions tell you to lather the product in your hair and then rinse out, for extra brightening, lather again and leave on for 3 to 5 minutes. Being the kind of blonde crazy person I am, I have been letting the product sit in my hair for 3-5 minutes every day for the past 4 days. I figure if your going to write a review, you need to dive in full force. 
The first time I used it, I definitely noticed a lightening of sorts. second and third use remained pretty much the same. After the fourth time I noticed that it added more life to my color and it didn't look so dull. I still had a little brassiness on my roots but not nearly as much as I did at the beginning of my experiment. I feel like the product is a little drying but it might also have something to do with me showering and washing my hair everyday after bleaching my hair. The dryness has been remedied with my awesome Argan Hair Oil!

Overall I would suggest this to the budgeted buyer. It's not something I would go out of my way to buy but if the options were limited, I wouldn't mind reaching for this product again. I will always be on the search for something newer and better. The quest goes on!


Take A Breath, Take It In

It has probably been a month since I posted anything. I have felt a lack of inspiration in all aspects of my life. I lost myself.

How could I possibly write about anything if my heart wasn't in it? I had many moments over the past month of whether I should relaunch my blog on a different website or if I would just quit blogging all together. There use to be a time when I would look at things multiple times a day and think to myself "wow, that would make a great post." and lately I haven't been feeling like that at all.

Quite frankly, I hadn't felt like myself in a long time. 

I don't know whether it was time for a break from all "responsibilities" that I needed or was it that I just wasn't interested in blogging anymore. How could a woman of so many words, have so little to stay.

I had to do some good old soul searching for a bit. I don't think I am quite back to where I want to be, but hey, the first part was taking the intiative to write this post. 

Sometimes I need to remind myself to take time for myself and unplug. I am constantly worrying and working, being apart of the "adult world" that I forget what I am doing it all for. How depressing of a thought is that? I'm sure everyone feels like this from time to time. Where you have to remind yourself what it is exactly that you like to do, what is it that makes you, you.

I want so much more for myself. I want to find a hobby that makes my mind easy. I want to sit on my porch and truly take in the world around me. I want to listen to the rain on the roof, with a candle lit in my living room and sit in total silence. I want the mornings to turn cool, so that I can take long walks in solitude. I want to get excited about life again and remember that there is only the one life that we are given. It's our choice what we do with it and how we spend it. 

"Some people feel the rain, Others just get wet"

I want to better myself as a person. I want to love selflessly, I want to laugh genuinely, I want to be surrounded by good people, making memories for a lifetime. I want to dig my feet in the sand and listen to waves crashing.

I am in the process of finding the spark that makes me the person I am. That K fell in love with. Something people can see in the glimmer of my eye and think 
"wow she is wild"


Lumene Day&Night Value Pack Review

Why yes, this is another Lumene post.
 I feel like at this rate I would make a great spokesperson for the brand!

I have had an ongoing struggle with eczema since I was a child and the skin condition still loves to show it's presence by giving me dry skin on my face. There is nothing worse than stinging, flaking, and itching of the skin! It is the worst around my eyes (see my post on Lumene 360 Eye Cream Here) and seems to pop up around my mouth and nose. It's embarrassing, I'm not going to lie. There is nothing worse than having adult acne and to top it all off red irritated skin. I feel like these  are all problems I should have been done with by now ugh.

None the less I needed a nighttime moisturizer that was heavy enough to give me the moisture I need for my skin to renew at night. I had been using my daytime moisturizer along with some Vaseline around the dryer parts of my skin, which don't get me wrong, worked quite well but the lotion itself was not providing enough moisturization. Besides I couldn't really lather on Vaseline all over my face either because 
a. I hate the feeling of greasy skin
 b. I doubt that would do much good for my acne problems 
Luckily when I went to my local CVS I found this amazing deal on a day&night moisturizer from Lumene, I was stoked. Something that would have regularly cost easily over 30 bucks, I got for the nice price of $19.99. That is the thing I love about stores like CVS, Walgreens, and Ulta. All these stores have a sale going on for beauty related items fairly often and products can usually be found in a nice price range that won't make your wallet and you weep tears of brokedom. 

(Is it just me, or do I have a man hand?)

Description of the day and night cream:

Day Cream:A fresh and moisturizing formula combines antioxidants from Arctic cloudberry and vitamin C, which is highly effective due to the encapsulation technology. SPF 15 medium protection UVA & UVB. 

Night Cream:Sleeping cream is more than a regular night cream. It helps your skin recover while you sleep and restores its natural balance. Packed with antioxidants to help brighten, nourish and vitalize tired and dull skin.
This intensively moisturizing overnight treatment contains hyaluronic acid to bind and retain water within the skin for optimal hydration, in order to diminish the signs of fatigue and reduce the look of fine lines. Protects the skin against the signs of aging.

 So the real question is, did it step up to the challenge?

With the night cream, I was feeling pessimistic about this one. My skin was dry and for the first few days it felt like it was making no difference and just making my skin feel greasy. As I mentioned above this is an issue for me and I hate the feeling of laying my head down onto my pillow and feeling like my moisturizer is just hovering on my face rather than being soaked in. But within the few days following I started to notice that my dry skin was letting up and the redness was fading. Now it took me about a week to realize (I kid you not) that with this product in specific, less is more. I had felt like I really needed to lather this in to get the results I desired but soon realized I could apply way less and still get the moisture I needed. 

Now the day cream was the same, less is more people. These are not the kind of moisturizers you want to slather your face with! This one I was thoroughly surprised with as I put the SPF15 to work on a beach day. I did not apply any additional sunscreen to my face after applying this and actually walked away after 6 hours of tanning with a unburnt face. It shielded my face from the sun while giving me the moisture TLC I needed for my face.

I would definitely recommend both of these products and with a price of 19.99 it was a steal. I have had both products for about a month and a half now and still have over half the product left. This is definitely more bang for you buck! 


Open Letter To The Impaired Medium

 PSA: Rant Ahead

Now I would like to begin this story by stating that I am as thick skinned as they get. I don't take much to heart and when I do, I won't be showing how much it bothers me. There are only a few areas in life that I will not tolerate:

1. Mistreating any animals
2. Disrespect
3. Saying unnecessary things about my loved ones

So this day started out like any other, K and I were going to babysit his youngest brother and his best friend for the day. We were going to have a nice day eating pizza, catching pokemon, and going to the pool. 

Everything went according to plan up until the pool. As soon as we got there we noticed that there was a very drunk couple in their mid 40's hanging out by the pool with their young daughter, I didn't think much of it, after all it was a nice sunny day and maybe they were just trying to have a good time on their day off. Well we had barely sat our stuff down before the lady and the man decided to start having a conversation with K and I. Not that it was much of a conversation, but out of courtesy we were willing to entertain them for a bit. 

They talked about how they had moved from California to Florida and how different the water was here compared to there etc. Meanwhile I coaxed the boys to go play with the girl, she seemed awfully lonely and bored with the fact that her parents weren't playing with her. Meanwhile K and I decided to move to the other end of the pool because the couple were acting like a bunch of fools. 

After laying by the pool for awhile I noticed that they had been joined by another maybe thirty something male who seemed hesitant to be hanging out with them. The lady immediately started jumping and hanging on to the guy in the pool as her husband reassured the guy that he really doesn't mind it at all. The guy was protesting this lady's advances anyway, saying how he didn't feel comfortable with the couples child watching their mother hang on to him like that. 

A little while later as I was heading out to grab some sunscreen for everyone, I saw the girl bust her butt while running. I walked over to her to see if she was alright and offering to help her with her scraped knees, meanwhile her parents looked and ignored that fact that their daughter was hurt. It was at this point when I began to be annoyed. How could two people be so uncaring for their child and be on god knows what in their child's presence? How could they not even make sure that their daughter  was alright? 

After I made sure she was alright and had returned with the sunscreen, I decided to move on and try to forget about the couples behavior, it wasn't worth dwelling on it. But as if to further annoy me the lady yelled over and told me she saw an old lady around me, a spirit of sorts. She asked me if I had lost my grandmother to which I replied I had. Now that was probably the moment when I should have told her to mind her business or that I didn't want to talk about it, my grandmother is a sore subject and something I still have not come to terms with. Of course this also happened the day after I had been thinking about her. She continued to tell me things my "grandmother" was saying to me and how proud she was of me. She asked me about my relationship with her and took shots in the dark when trying to guess something about our past. 

I was more than annoyed at this point, she was relentless about this, even after I was very obviously irritated. I wanted to tell her that she knew NOTHING about my relationship with my grandmother and how she couldn't possibly phantom how much I loved her. Finally she did end up moving on to her next drunken activity but the annoyance and grief stuck with me. We ended up leaving the pool right after and it wasn't until I came home and took a shower that I had to realize that I shouldn't give this lady the time of day. She was belligerent and a fool and I should leave her in her own worth. 

One thing she was right about, my grandmother is always with me, whether that be in my thoughts or my heart.


Renewing Argan Oil For A Great Hair Day

Love me some hair products! I finally after months of being broke (the struggle is real) got to restock on some of my necessities. I was out of a lot of small everyday things and had been neglecting key parts like my hair, due to this. I had been looking for a hair serum of sorts to bring a little life back into my dry ends that had been suffering over the harshest summer months. I ran out of my leave in conditioner about a month ago and had been using a small amount of conditioner just on my ends as a substitute. It wasn't half bad for a quick replacement, but did weigh down my thin hair if I wasn't sparing when applying. 

I found this argan oil of morocco penetrating oil at a local Publix.
I had used renewing argan oil of morocco before but I had bought it in a spray form. I was interested to see if there was any visible difference between the two plus it was only 8 dollars so it was right in the price range I was trying to keep it in. 

The description for the oil as found on Ulta.com:
This rare formula has a centuries-old history of providing natural vitamin E and antioxidants while renewing your hair's cell structure, sealing in shine, and creating lush softness. A precious blend of Moroccan argan oil which instantly penetrates the hair shaft restoring shine and softness while strengthening. Derived from the southwest region of Morocco, argan oil protects from styling heat and UV damage while creating soft, seductive, silky perfection.

As far as descriptions went it sounded pretty darn near identical to the spray oil that I had bought previously, nonetheless I was willing to give it a whirl!

Now I am not going to lie I didn't see a huge difference after applying the penetrating oil versus the spray. The only true difference is that I felt as though my hair had a much better chance of soaking in more product therefor my hair felt softer to the touch. After applying this to damp hair, my brush literally glided through my hair, whereas normally it would snag on about 20 different knots on the way down to my ends. I love the way my hair feels after using this product and it looks so healthy! Gotta say these Moroccan oil guys are on to something with their products!

This is a find for someone who is not trying to break their bank while keeping those bad hair days at bay because no ones got time for that!



Lumene Bright Now 360 Eye Treatment Review

Have I mentioned how much I love Lumene products? I might be somewhat partial to anything that comes from Finland but there is something about Lumene products that make my skin and I so happy with the way they make me feel. 

 I had recently started to develop a bit of exzema around my eyes (that pain is the single worst pain of dry skin in my opinion) to the point where my skin was literally cracking. I obviously couldn't use any of my regular deep moisturizing lotions due to the irritation they would cause my eyes, trust me I naively tried and ended up with watery stinging eyes. It sucked. I went to my local CVS with the intention of showing my mother where to find Lumene products when I stumbled across this guy,

(Find it here!) 

Description found on Lumene.com:
This lightweight treatment targets all signs of aging for brighter looking eyes. It visibly diminishes dark circles and reduces puffiness and wrinkles. Designed to lift and restore the firmness of upper eyelid against sagging.
Our unique, patented Cloudberry Stem Cell extract in synergy with Beautifeye™ technology is designed to be a global 360° eye contour solution for all skincare challenges around the eyes. The delicate eye regains its suppleness and brightness.

I couldn't resist the urge and just had to get it! Now it wasn't the cheapest of products but I wouldn't go to say that it was super expensive either. To me this was a splurge however, most of the time I tend to not venture beyond the 12 dollar mark unless it is gifted.

First impression: Boy does this sting! But what else could have been expected when you apply something to cracked skin, the feeling luckily quickly subsided. I noticed my skin immediately soaked all of the product and within a few hours my eyes were already looking less red and irritated. I decided to use this 3 times a day instead of twice due to the excessive dryness I was experiencing as well. 

The next day I noticed how much brighter and awake my eyes looked, I looked like I had gotten a full nights sleep when in reality, I had only slept about 5 hours the night before, this was awesome!

 Within a week my eyes had returned mostly to their natural state and I had noticed a serious improvement when it came to the skin around my eyes. There was still lingering dryness, which always takes quite some time to get rid of once it gets bad to the point that it had. Otherwise I feel like it transformed me into a generally happier looking person, it is amazing what a little eye cream can do for the soul and mind!
 I would definitely recommend the splurge to everyone who neglects their eyes from time to time!

If your dry skin is getting out of control, layer a bit of vaseline or lip balm (weird I know) on dry areas and it will give you non stinging relief and speed up the process of healing!


Epielle Facial Essence Cucumber Mask

I am a bit of a face mask fanatic, I love the feeling I get after using one (most of the time anyway) and love finding new and affordable masks that work for me. I recently stumbled across a brand name Epielle that K's mom had picked up at big lots. 

I personally never shop at big lots and I think it is largely due to the stigma I got the one time I did go. It was a very run down store with  no air conditioning and just overall a very sad looking place with little to no selection of items. Due to this I never went back or sought out another big lots in my area. K's mom however had been hyping Big lots for quite some time (apparently they have name brand products for way cheaper than other stores) and then proceeded to offer me this face mask she had gotten there when she saw that my skin had started to look angry again.

I had my reservations of course. This was a brand I had never heard of or read about, it was also a sheet mask which I had researched before but never really had the urge to try one out. But I decided to put my judgments aside and give it a whirl, what was the worst that could happen? My skin had taken a turn for the worse with the increasing humidity and heat that is Florida, I was desperate.

Description of product as found on the back of the package:
Epielle Cucumber Facial essence mask contains cucumber and essential botanical extract to leave your skin refreshed and  purified. Your skin will soak up the concentrated extracts in the pure natural cotton mask to brighten your face after every treatment.

After showering the other night I decided it would be the perfect time to give this a try. My skin was clean, prepped, and ready to go. I had read reviews on the mask earlier on in the day (cause I wouldn't be me if I hadn't) and had read for the most part very positive reviews, not that there was many to go off of. The only complaint was that the mask had a tendency of falling off and that it was overly saturated in the extracts. Neither of these issues bothered me one bit when I put the mask on, I decided to lay down on my back to avoid the slipping problem and thought that the mask was just the right amount of saturated. Plus this gave me a good reason to lay in bed and relax for 30 minutes.

The directions said to smooth it over my face to ensure good skin contact and to leave it on for 20 to 30 minutes, but I found that giving it an extra ten minutes made all the difference and gave it more time to dry on my face. Immediately after removing it my skin felt so light and fresh. The dullness had faded and my skin looked bright. It felt so smooth to the touch and overall just better. I was very happy with the results and noticed that even the morning after my skin looked way better in comparison to what it had looked like before. 

These masks are only 4 dollars I think for a pack of 6-8 so it is a great bargain and won't hurt your wallet too much when you just want to indulge in a little self care. I would definitely recommend this to everyone and it seems to work well with all skin types. I can't wait to dry a different one next and maybe, just maybe, this girl will become a big lots shopper.


When Life Knocks You Down, You Get Right Back Up

The past week I have been going through a rough patch, sometimes it feels like the whole world is crashing down on you and you feel so overwhelmed that you forget why you work so hard. The kind of times where everything seems to be going wrong and just when you think it can't get any worse, you turn your coffee machine on but forget to put the coffee pot in. I had forgotten to take time for myself and to take a breather, I had been so concentrated on reaching a goal that I forgot to take care of myself first. This led to me having a breakdown of sorts where I felt beyond defeated, I needed someone to just take the time to ask me if I was doing okay, I needed to vent, and most of all I needed to take a break. 

K saw that I was beyond done with feeling this way and decided to dedicate a whole day for me to do nothing. I laughed at the idea of me sitting around doing nothing productive for a whole day. There was no way I was going to be able to keep myself still for any longer than an hour. But nonetheless I promised him that I would try my very hardest to calm down and channel my inner bum, if only for one day. 

It proved to be harder than I expected.

By noon the next day I was feeling jittery and felt almost claustrophobic thinking that I shouldn't be doing anything but feeling a strong urge to occupy myself somehow. After a little convincing that I was going out of my mind, K caved and let me vacuum my car but after that it would be right back to what I was doing before. I needed to find something I could do that would relax me but also keep my mind busy, turns out the answer to my problem was simple.

as it turns out, are SERIOUSLY underrated. I felt at ease thinking I was accomplishing something while "building" but I also felt very zen and content sitting in one place for hours on end. I was content in complete solitude but also was very happy when K and his brother decided to join me. It was a form of bonding that you forget about nowadays, we were away from our phones, electronics, and any other brain numbing activities and we were just enjoying each others silent company while building something as a team.

By the end of the day I felt a million times better, all I had needed to do was to take a breather and do something other than my endless mental checklist of chores and tasks that I felt needed to be completed everyday. I needed to take some time for me and puzzles were the answer to keeping me still for long enough to relax. It was honestly one of the simplest and greatest days I have had in awhile. 

So whenever you feel overwhelmed,
Build a puzzle
Take a breath
Realize it will be alright
Selfishly take some time for yourself
And forget the chores

It will do wonders to renew your whole being.


Renewing + Argan Oil Of Morocco Conditioner

It seems like the ends to my hair are always dry, frail and frizzy. No amount of trims will change this and moisturizing products are always needed. Now that Summer has full blown started (as if it hasn't been hot for the past 2 months!) it seems as though my ends are getting more damaged. The sun dries out my hair, the pool dries out my hair, there are so many new drying factors that come with a new season, that is why I am always on a mission to find moisturizing products to keep my hair looking happy and healthy.

Quite a few things have worked in the past (like it's a ten hair mask) but I always like to widen my horizons when it comes to new products. 

If you settle for just one, how do you know there is nothing better out there?

I had stumbled across renewing+argan oil of Morocco conditioner and just had to give it a try. Not only was the beautifully blue bottle eye catching and fun but I have always like the ideas of using oils in my hair. There is something blissfully pleasing when you see your dry ends go from blah to hey hey hey look at them now!

Description of the conditioner online:

This rare formula has a centuries-old history of providing natural vitamin E and antioxidants while renewing your hair's cell structure, sealing in shine, and creating lush softness. A precious blend of Moroccan argan oil which instantly penetrates the hair shaft restoring shine and softness while strengthening. Derived from the southwest region of Morocco, argan oil protects from styling heat and UV damage while creating soft, seductive, silky perfection.

Immediately after using it just one time I noticed how after air drying and sleeping, I still woke up with smooth ends! This is by far the hardest state to achieve unless I wear my hair up or have product in it, so right of the bat I was impressed. After using it regularly I started to notice that my hair did indeed feel "stronger", There was less breakage while showering and with brushing after. My hair did indeed look renewed and healthy, it was more manageable on a daily basis and the conditioner didn't weigh my hair down at all. I do also use the condition before shampoo technique due to it keeping my hair looking less greasy for longer (I am a thin haired girl so it doesn't take much.) Overall I think this should be an item that every girl with dry hair or even girls who just need a hair pick me up keeps in their shower. Most definitely a must have for a bargain!


Short Sunday Thoughts

As a person I am so indecisive, I can't make up my mind for the life of me, and making choices often gives me huge anxiety!

"What if this isn't the right choice?"

A question that runs through my head from the most minuscule decisions to bigger life choices. But that is just it, life is full of choices, and no matter what, whatever choice you make will make your life take a different path than the other. 

Like Rush said and a lyric that really resonated with me.
 "if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."

Maybe it's my anxiety making me overthink but I know I am not the only one who deals with this, the struggle is all too real. 

So my answer to moments like these:


Take it easy

Go to the beach

Hope you guys are enjoying every last bit of this Sunday before the next work week starts!


Why We Do It

I wrote last week about my journey to try to start working out, what I had accomplished, and how I had felt lately. This past week I have been slacking, it is so disappointing when you were doing so good at attaining a goal you set for yourself and then you start to lose sight of what you are trying to accomplish.
Work is one of my biggest obstacles.
I had a big week last week and was not getting home until about 6 or 7 at night and at that point it is a game of catch up with preparing dinner, getting showered, and tidying up the house. It's truly exhausting when you feel like all you do is work and sleep and there comes a point in time where you just have to suck it up for a little bit and then pick back up from where you left off. So that is exactly what I did, I picked back up where I left off.
I had an awesome short day at work and was lucky enough to get home by 12, how nice was that for a monday! I fell into laziness at first when I plopped down on the couch and started watching tv, but after a nice lunch and maybe too small of a digestion time, I 
decided it was time to get my butt up and moving. 

I started off with some awesome yoga stretches like the pigeon and corpse (lazy I know!) and proceeded to start lifting my 15 pound weight, incorporating some squats into my session. That feeling I got afterwards, I almost forgot just how great it feels. The feeling of tension and anxiety just starting to melt away with each rep I did and soon I found my body and mind at ease and peace.

For the longest time I couldn't figure out how people stay motivated to keep working out, but it is that feeling you get right after a good workout of accomplishment and hard work that makes it all worth it. They aren't lying when they say exercise is the best anxiety medicine. Not only does working out give that special attention to your body, it also makes you feel so aware of how you felt beforehand, what normal felt like before you started doing something for yourself. 

Don't give up on your hobbies or goals, even if you start to fall behind or miss a few workouts. You can always pick right back up where you left off and no one will think any less of you. 

That's the beauty of life, you are the only person who you need to impress, everyone else is just background noise.


Adapalene Gel 0.1% Review!

A subject I don't shy away from is my skin. 

I have written numerous posts on products on my quest to clear skin, I have been plagued by adult acne for four years now and it is the worst. It truly does take a toll on one's self esteem and it is so discouraging when you try your very hardest and nothing changes. I have come across many products that have helped me keep it under control (like this Cetaphil cleanser) and have become the poster child for how one should take care of their skin. 

I wash my face twice a day, every day. I try to eat clean and certainly never touch my face. I wash my sheets at the very least once a week and have been trying quite a few home remedies lately (post to come soon!) I had even been working out almost every day!

So why am I still dealing with acne? 

Good question, the answer is unknown to me too, but I have found something that could change the game for me. I had gone to a dermatologist a while back to discuss different options that wouldn't be too harsh on my skin or body (like steroids or other harsh medicines). I was willing to try something new but I was not willing to put my body through hell and back. They prescribed me an oral medicine and a topical gel. I never ended up taking the oral medicine because I had read horrible reviews on them and common side effects were less than ideal.

The topical Cream was called Adapalene, also goes by the name Differin. I was a little worried about this stuff, questions like would my skin remain looking good after I stop using this or will I forever depend on this? Would my sensitive skin suffer horribly from this? But these were all questions I had to look past if I ever wanted to attain good skin.

I started using it and noticed within a few days my skin was becoming red, flaky, and irritated. I was also getting more new pimples than I had before. This caused a serious blow to my self esteem, I had just started a new job and I looked like a 13 year old going through puberty. I felt like everyone I was working with was only seeing my skin. Of course this is ridiculous, I'm sure some of them noticed but I am also sure that they are capable of holding conversations without only thinking about how disgusting my skin looked.

I almost stopped using it all together after the first few days due to these issues, but of course I decided to go on handy dandy google and look up some reviews. To my surprise it had awesome ratings more so than any other drug I had ever looked up. As I was reading the reviews, I started to notice that my initial symptoms were shared by many. See this topical gel will make your skin worse before it gets better, people were referring to it as the "skin purge", but they said these were symptoms that would subside in a matter of weeks. I decided it was worth it to stick with it for a little longer, it couldn't get much worse than this.

After a week or so I noticed the first signs of improvement. My skin was starting to look and feel less dry and more like my normal skin, the acne on my face was beginning to subside, and new pimples were becoming fewer and further between, healing much sooner than before. I was able to start wearing less foundation and even K started to compliment me on my newly clearer skin. That was probably the biggest compliment of them all, if K noticed a difference that means it had to be a bigger change than I thought. I was beginning my route to clearer skin and more confidence, this was awesome.

Now sitting on my couch, sipping my coffee, I am feeling a pimple start to form on my chin. I am not worried and remain hopeful that it won't become a bigger problem with the gel.

If any of you have been having trouble with skin problems, I would highly suggest going to see a dermatologist! If not for acne you should go anyway for a skin check, skin cancer is so real and so common!
So this might not be the end of my skin struggles but it is a very promising beginning to something newer and better.


Staying Motivated To Get Fit

It is not unlike me to have a whim to do something or change my lifestyle and it end up failing every time. Why is it so hard to build a habit or make a change to your lifestyle. Why are we creatures of old habits and new ones for me, are nearly impossible to adapt.

I read it takes 3-6 weeks to build a habit and make it routine. So when I had a whim to start working out, not only to tone up my "bod" but to lead an overall healthier life, I had low expectations to how long it would actually last. 

I'm an Aries, notorious for starting projects but not seeing them through to the end. 

Little did I know that I would force myself to find the time 6 out of the 7 days of this last week to workout. I was so proud of myself, not only for sticking through for a week but the fact that I was able to motivate myself enough to get off the couch more than just a few times. By the end of the week I was feeling more energized and overall more relaxed. I found it was easier for my anxious mind to put some of those irrational thoughts on the back burner when it was time to relax, which in turn led to a week of almost zero anxiety. I hadn't felt this good since I had lived in Oregon and had gone hiking on a regular basis. 

Diet on the other hand is still a little difficult during hard financial times. When you are broke it's hard to buy all the healthy dinners that should go hand in hand with this new lifestyle change. I have been rummaging through my cabinets on a daily basis trying to find healthy alternatives to replace the calories burned during my workouts. Being such a skinny build, it is major that I replace the calories because otherwise I will be losing unnecessary weight and that is not the goal. My goal is to feel better, tone up, and to build a habit earlier in life so that it is not that hard to stay healthy when I reach an older age.

Pinterest is an awesome resource for at home workouts and you can really find a variety of them so you can change it up daily or weekly to concentrate on different parts of your body. Don't be discouraged if you don't have any equipment because most of them do not require it. I have one 15 pound weight and two 10 pound weights and have barely even needed them. 
So even if you only do 15min a day, it's better than nothing at all am I right?

So what results have I seen this week?

  • I went from doing 15-20 crunches to doing 30-35
  • I fall asleep easier and get a better quality of sleep
  • I have more energy to do other things throughout the day
  • I feel better about myself
  •  I am more flexible

   Here's to another week of working out and keeping that motivation up!


When You Need A Pick Me Up

I spend a lot of my off time on pinterest, probably more than I would like to admit. It's just too convenient to have a place where you can mindlessly scroll through for hours and find so much cool stuff. Lately I have been trying to find a few good quotes a day and pin them. These quotes are always something that make me feel happy, powerful, and at peace with my thoughts. I thought it would be a nice mood booster for you guys for me to list off some of my favorites!

Make sure to checkout my pinterest board for more inspiring quotes to life yourself up, 


Garnier Nutrisse Nourishing Color Creme Review

I always end up putting off dyeing my hair like 3 more months than I had originally planned. It just gets to the point where I think to myself, maybe I can deal with my roots showing a week or two more, which then turns into me not caring for many more weeks. I have naturally blond hair that has varied from platinum blond to a dirty blond throughout my life, so it's not like my roots ever look that drastic when they grow out.

 I would however probably never go back to my original hair color. 

Anyway I realized that it was indeed time to dye my hair again. The problem however was that the last time I had dyed my hair at home, my hair had been fried. I try to take good care of my hair, god knows I do. I have witnessed too many people ruin their precious locks for vanity and I was not about to join that crowd. I did some research online (because what else could you possibly trust more) and saw that garnier nutrisse was all across the board people's fav go-to dye when it came to gentle hair dye. I had usually always gone the loreal route because it's a brand I know and trust, but with a price tag of 6.99 for garnier, I had to try it.

 The product description that you can find here:
 Garnier Nutrisse is the only permanent haircolor creme that nourishes with grape seed and avocado oil. The nourishing color creme enriched with fruit oil concentrate, penetrates deep into hair fibers to nourish and condition your hair so it takes color better and holds it longer, root-to-tip. Garnier Nutrisse delivers rich, long-lasting color with 100% gray coverage.

Now I was a bit skeptic as to how gentle this would actually be on my hair, at the end of the day I am still using chemicals to essentially bleach my hair. Nonetheless I stayed optimistic to the end.

The prep was the same as it is for any other at home box color. You pretend to be a scientist and mix all your ingredients together and shake well, simple enough. It should also be noted that this should be applied to unwashed hair for best results, trust me.

 The actual application was simple and easy as well, although it is said to be a non-drip formula, it still dripped. This could have just been how not concerned I was with being careful! Anyway I spread this onto my roots first, making sure to get the back of my head well too, I am so scared that I won't get even coverage back there since I can't see there and all, so this is where most of the product ends up being applied.

After the roots are done, you will need to find something relatively entertaining to do for 25 min and then come back and use the rest on your ends. Only keep it on for 5 minutes, your total process should only take 30 min, and then rinse. Rinse like you have never rinsed before. You will also find a handy avocado oil conditioner that you should lather your hair with and let it sit for two min.

And Voila! 

I loved the results I got! My hair didn't seem fried or dehydrated at all, on the contrary it looked shiny and bouncy. The color came out perfect and not an ounce of brassiness was to be found, it's always such a hit or miss when it comes to these things.  I would definitely recommend this!


Top Busy Person Tips To A Tidier Home

You look around your house on Saturday morning and see the mess chaos that is your home. Your plans are now narrowed down to cleaning your whole weekend away or ignoring it and it just piling up to the point of no return. Why cause yourself such a horrible ultimatum on your relaxation days when you could take a peek into my top tips to keep your house clean throughout the week to save you some trouble!

So how do I find the time to not only keep my house tidy, but also to relax and unwind? 

1. Do the dishes every night- Do a load of dishes every night. Prepare by pre-rinsing your dishes and putting them into an empty dishwasher. I cannot even explain how much less enjoyable doing dishes is when there are so many dishes that they are overflowing out of your sink and when every single dish has dried up gunk on it that takes you a solid 20 minutes to remove.

2. Don't wait for laundry to pile up- I used to wait until the weekend to do laundry, that is until I noticed that my whole Saturday and Sunday consisted of me steadily loading and unloading the washer and dryer. I have now made it a routine to wash a load every night (or every other night depending on need). Not only do I do laundry everyday but I put it away as soon as it is done.

3. Running a rag over surfaces- If you cook, take the time to wipe down the counters right after. If you just got done eating, wipe down the dining room table.  If you notice a bunch of dust gathering on any surface, take the 30seconds it takes and wipe it down. This will help your home look and feel significantly tidier on a daily basis.

4. Make your bed- After a long day at work nothing sounds better than my bed. What makes falling in to bed that much better is the fact that my bed is made. It just makes the whole bed feel more fresh and comfy.

5. Broom your floors- especially if you have dogs. Dust and hair collects so fast, as does food crumbs and other dirt. Quickly running a broom over your foyer and kitchen area, or even wiping it down with a rag will help with preventing pests and you'll love the way your floor feels beneath your bare feet!

6. Basically if it takes less than 5-10 min, go ahead and do it right then and there. 

Bonus ideas to help make your morning easier:

1. Set your coffee maker in advance, even if it does not have a timer. Just setting it up to the point where you can walk out of your room and just press a button and ta-daa you have a fresh hot cup of joe makes all the difference.

2. Set up you breakfast, the same as your coffee. Setting out, for example, your cereal and bowl with your spoon can make your morning just that much easier.  Forget looking through sleepy eyes, trying to find something to eat, all you have to do now is just pour and go! Give your yesterday night self a tap on the back.

3. Set your clothes out for the next morning. Say hello to walking in your bathroom and mindlessly putting random clothes on because for one, not random you set them there and for two still no effort required. #score

4. If your not one of those people who absolutely have to shower the morning of, shower the night before. Not only can you accomplish super cute next day hairstyles (no heat required) but you can also save yourself about 30 min every morning.

Some nights it might feel like you don't have the energy to stick to your newly found routine but a habit takes approximately 6 weeks to develop and become a part of your daily routine.
Keep with it!


Shopping For Less At Garage Sales

Sometimes I forget how much fun garage sales can be. Not only how fun, but what gems you can find in the midst of other people's "trash". I am not ashamed to admit that some of the nicest pieces of furniture and decor we have are from garage sales. 

My favorite garage sales are the ones in the "higher class" areas of town. Today for instance there was a community garage sale in a very well off area. That is where you can find the best furniture because most of these people are selling their "old" stuff to make room for their new living room, dining room and bedroom sets. Meanwhile you can pick and choose from each one and put together a nice, new and unique set of your own to fill your home.

The last time K and I went to a community garage sale in this very same neighborhood, we walked away with a beautiful wooden glasstop living room coffee table that still looks almost brand new to this day. So we set out on a venture with 40 dollars in our pocket to go look for some misallaneous items. We were not on the search for any furniture but more like small decorations and just overall fun pieces.

Here is our loot:

Wooden Sign $12

This sign was more of a statement piece I would say, it was exactly K's style of piece. Being that he is convinced that he is a pirate, this sign was essential for him. Who would I be to stop him from buying it. It is definitely something you won't find elsewhere!

Wooden Bowl Thing $1

Mostly bought this because it was nice looking and wooden. There was really no functional drive behind it. It will probably be full of random crap in a matter of days and be useless! But nonetheless, it looks nice for now!

Sunglasses $1

Sunglasses are something we never have a shortage of. When I saw these, I knew I had to have them. Not only did K say that they looked great but also the old man selling them. It might've just been a sales technique but it worked. After looking at myself a few more times in the mirror, it was a done deal.

Dartboard $10

This one I wasn't so fond of, this was purely of K's wanting. I wasn't too hyped about the idea of darts being thrown inside, nor was I too fond of having this out on the porch. I guess I am just a pushover cause here we are now and it's leaning on my dining room wall...

Glade Air Freshener 12 for $4

Now this was a deal and a half. Not only are these like a dollar a pop or more anywhere you find them, but also this lady had them in the greatest scents. K was also more than happy to buy these because inevitably we were going to buy some and he thinks they are a waste of money. So better to get them cheap where you can, plus I won't have to buy anymore probably for the next year and a half.

So all in all not a huge haul but definitely worth it. I got some personable and necessary items and also just some items that don't make a lot of sense. It was a good morning with K though and we enjoyed our time together after a week of barely having time together after long days at work.

 Is it time for me to win the lottery yet?