Monday, May 18, 2015

Dear First Year of College

Dear advisor who put up with me for six months: Thank you for being understanding & not losing patience despite the various issues that caused my college acceptance to be delayed until a week before my flight. I could never have done it without you. Thank you for the endless emails, phone calls & even texts that helped me figure out classes, FAFSA, meal plans & everything else in between. Looking back, I realize now how chaotic the whole process was, but with your help, I was able to transition smoothly. 

Dear orientation leader: Thank you for being over-the-top welcoming & for answering the few questions I was brave enough to ask in our small groups that first day of college. Your enthusiasm, while seemingly fake & terribly annoying at the time, really did help me ease into the whole "be chill" vibe that is crucial to practice. 

Dear boys I kissed: It's college. It happened. We're adults, it's not awkward. Okay, let's move on. I promise I don't hate you. And yeah, of course I remember. No, we don't have to get married. 

Dear favorite teacher: Thank you for believing in me & my work even when I cut myself short. Thank you for tolerating my sometimes inappropriately casual & unfiltered attitude in class & for always having your office door open. Thank you for listening to me rant about my final paper & the annoying characters I was dealing with- both in literature & real life. Finally, thank you for encouraging me to pursue something I've always wanted to pursue but didn't have the guts or the encouragement to do so. 

Dear friends: It's not easy being my friend, is it? Thank you for accepting my crazy, my annoying, my good, bad & ugly. Thank you for being a shoulder to cry on, providing a bed to sleep on, a buddy to eat with & a partner to study with. Thank you for the whole days we wasted watching Netflix & the nights I swore I wouldn't survive. Thank you for the lessons you taught me & the love you gave me. Whether or not we remain friends throughout the coming years, I will never forget you, even if you forget me. 

Dear Louayne: You are one tough lunch lady. Thank you for always greeting me with a smile & being patient when my I.D. didn't work & had to be swiped 6+ times. Thank you for never judging me when I came in to get a cup of coffee every 45 minutes five times in a row. Thank you for cleaning up the cafeteria messes, wearing holiday-themed accessories with pride & striking up conversations with the football players (which was just plain adorable).

Dear roommate: You are my best friend. I don't know what I did the first few weeks we weren't friends. I still don't know how we got from that first Barnes & Noble date & talking about our exes, high school & families to where we are today. Thank you for truly never giving up on me, even when I'm sure you felt like you wanted or needed to. Thank you for believing in me, trusting me, listening to me & yelling at me, each when needed. Thank you for supporting me in the things that deserved support & helping me mend things that needed mending. Thank you for doubling my closet & being my most favorite hello & hardest goodbye. You made my first year in college all that it was & I cannot imagine how I got on before you. I love you so much & can't wait for the years to come. 

Dear North Dakota: Thank you for showing me that heaven exists in a bowl of knoefla, that San Francisco's "windy" is literally nothing compared to yours & that trees should be appreciated when seen (which is pretty much never). Thank you for being my second home. P.S. I love you.

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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Spring Photoshoot

Now that spring is in full force and it's feeling more and more like summer every day, I wanted to take advantage of the gorgeous weather and put together some outfits that I've been styling. They range from super casual to something nicer for Church, a graduation party, etc. Dressing up is my absolute favorite and I believe that even the simplest of outfits can be pulled together with some pearls and a pop of lipstick. 

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Hooked On...

This app: I'm a little late to the Audible bandwagon, but after recently dedicating this summer to reading more books (among other things like working, driving, surviving, etc.) I figured I'd give it a try. I signed up for the free trial which includes one free audiobook of your choice (which is awesome, thanks Amazon) & so far, so good! I haven't yet decided if I'm going to cave in and pay for the monthly membership. It will depend on whether or not I get this job that I applied for...more on that later. It's also kind of a bother, being that Audible is twice the price of Netflix, and I've been considering getting my own Netflix account for when I go back to school in August. I guess binge-listening is healthier than binge-watching, but we'll see. Anyway. The book I decided to listen to is What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty. I put it on my list of books I want to read this summer, so I thought it was an excellent choice. I like how you download the book to your phone or tablet, so it doesn't require WiFi or use data & the app has a sleep timer along with a variety of other settings, so I'm really enjoying it. My guess is that I'm going to get so addicted that I'll have to join...that's their whole plot, isn't it?

This cleanser: I discovered this after going through my YouTube subscriptions & hearing it mentioned more than once. When I got back from school for the summer, I needed to buy all new skin & hair care products as I couldn't bring my full sized ones on the plane. But that's all besides the point...I picked up this cleansing water because I wanted to try a new skincare routine & thought that this would be implemented nicely. I love it. It's light & refreshing & doesn't require a rinse because it's an actual water itself. I pour a little on a cotton pad & cleanse my face in the morning before moisturizing & I've already noticed a difference in my skin. It's not as dry or tight & it just feels all around a lot cleaner. 

This hair: I've been debating getting my hair done for a while now. It's well overdue, but I've always been really hesitant to cut it or do anything with it because it takes forever to grow & I have somewhat difficult hair to deal with. It's naturally curly, but lately, it's less curls & more awkward waves that like to do whatever the hell they please. I guess you could say there's no real order to my hair. I end up straightening it a lot of the time, just so it's easier to manage, but even with proper protection, I hate how heat slows down the growing process. With that in mind, I'm considering taking the plunge & getting my hair done & I mean done, like consulting a professional & seeing what the deal is & how I can learn to love my natural hair more. I really like the whole long-bob style, especially the look of this one, minus the color as I'm a lot darker than that & would like to keep it that way. I'll keep you updated on that whole process. 

This coffee: Y'all know how I am about my coffee. Absolutely addicted. Really it's starting to get a little worrisome. At school, I was getting up to 6-8 cups a day. Yeah. One of my best friends recently started working at Dutch Bros. Coffee which is new in Napa, & let me tell you, it's a whole experience in & of itself. There's a walk-up window or a drive-thru & the whole atmosphere is super chill with a sort of hippy vibe, very different from a Starbucks or Peets. The coffee is really good. I ordered the Annihilator the other day, but I'm willing to try the whole menu. If you have a Dutch Bros. near you, I definitely recommend. 

This quote: This quote has just been speaking to me lately. No other explanation. 

These shorts: Clean, classic, comfortable. That's what I'm looking for in an everyday/working out/hanging around short. I like these because they're super lightweight & have a softer material, so it doesn't feel like you're wearing those annoying nylon workout shorts that ride up in the back and show underwear lines and all that dumb stuff. These are also reasonably priced for Under Armour & I love the range of colors, but the grey is especially unique.

This photography: I want to get back into using my camera more this summer & this kind of photography is something I've always wanted to master. It's so different & pleasant to look at & not that complicated once you get the hang of it. The American Flag is so cool, but I'm really not sure how it was captured so that would be really fun to play around with. 

These nails: Yes, those are mine. I missed my manicures so much. I like to keep it simple & classic & my mentality is that I can do a lot of color on my own at home & they generally don't look half bad, so when I go to get my nails done, I like to do something I can't do myself, aka a French manicure. 

This comic relief: Oh Ellen, I don't agree with the majority of your beliefs but boy, are you funny. I started listening to comedy radio on Spotify during the day or before bed, if I'm not reading/listening to a book & Ellen is just plain hilarious. She's a little coarse sometimes but very straightforward & sarcastic & she's pretty harmless for the most part. I really enjoy listening to her. 

Anything new you're hooked on?
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Saturday, May 9, 2015

Summer Makeup Wishlist

Summer Makeup/Skincare

Dior Lip Glow in Coral Coral // find it here

Stila CC Color Correcting Cream // find it here

bareMinerals Perfecting Face Brush // find it here

Benefit Puff Off! // find it here

Tarte Cheek Stain in Tipsy // find it here

bareMinerals Complexion Rescue in Vanilla // find it here

Dolce&Gabbana Light Blue Eau de Toilette // find it here

Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics Palette // find it here

Which beauty or skincare items are on your summer wishlist? 

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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Summer Reading List

I used to be an avid reader, sometimes reading up to three books a week. I started forgetting my love for reading when I started high school, and didn't find much time for it in college, but a few weeks before finals, I was at Barnes & Noble with my roommate, and I grabbed a random book...I was hooked. I admit, I picked it up off the shelf because I liked its cover and definitely didn't plan on actually reading the whole thing. I was tired of social media and Netflix (gasp!) and I just wanted to take my mind off of life. So I started reading. And I've had a hard time putting it down since. I had to take a break to focus on finals, but I only have a few chapters left and now that it's summer, I really want to keep reading and get through as many books as I can, while still enjoying them. 

Here is a list of the books on my summer reading list. (The book I'm currently reading is A Hundred Summers by Beatriz Williams.) 

1. The Secret Life of Violet Grant by Beatriz Williams

2. Paper Towns by John Green

4. #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso

5. What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty 

Hopefully, if I can succeed in reading all of these within the next few months, I will plan on doing a review on each one to let you know how they were. 

What books are on your summer reading list?
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Monday, May 4, 2015

Musings of a Foodie: Afternoon in the Valley

View from Hall Winery

Pulled pork sandwich on sourdough roll with creamy potato salad, Homestead Restaurant

View from the Artesa balcony

Virgin Mary statue, Artesa Winery

Dean & Deluca, Purveyors of Fine Food

Farmstead Restaurant

Iced vanilla latte & sea salted caramel, Dean & Deluca

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