31 July 2012

Detoxing... Kind of

Last week I took a much needed vacation to... wait for it... Las Cruces! I guess going home isn't really a vacation, but it was definitely a welcome break in routine. Visiting home was great, for many reasons. Throughout the week, however, I definitely overindulged. I ate a ton of (amazing) greasy, cheesy Mexican food, lots of bread, and drank way too much. It was all fun and enjoyable, but I definitely felt bloated and disgusting by the end of my trip. (I think I gained about 6 pounds.) I was planning on doing a fruit and veggie detox for 3-5 days to clean out my system when I got back, but that fell by the wayside pretty quickly. I have, however, been eating mindfully, and I do feel slightly healthier. I made a batch of this black bean quinoa salad on Sunday that I've been eating for lunch every day, and today I made broccoli arugula soup that will be dinner for a couple days.

On another fitness note, apparently I have really wide feet! I've always had a problem with my feet hurting when I go running (ok, jogging). So I finally went to a Fleet Feet store and got a gait analysis. I learned that my feet are so wide that they hang slightly over the edges of my shoe, so I'm not getting full support when I run. After learning this, I tried on several pairs of wide shoes (they even have you jog outside in them to see how they feel!) and purchased a pair of (expensive) running shoes on my mom's credit card. Now, I feel bad about spending so much of my parents' money on a pair of shoes, but my mom said that as long as I'll use them she doesn't mind. So now I have to start running jogging!

This coming weekend is Lollapalooza, so I know my healthy habits will all be shot to hell, but I'm going to keep up with them for the next couple days and resume them next Monday! Maybe next week I can even stick to an all fruit and veggie diet for a few days. I've been thinking and talking about changing my diet and exercise habits for a while, but now I really am going to stick to a new, healthy lifestyle!

29 July 2012

If you really knew me...

Ok, so about half of the people who follow my blog have already done this, so you know the drill.

If you really knew me:

You'd know that lemonheads are my absolute favorite candy. Have been for as long as I can remember. I'll eat them til my teeth hurt. I just ate a couple right now, as a matter of fact.

You'd know that I have an incredibly corny sense of humor. I think I inherited it from my mom and grandpa. I get a kick out of the silliest things. I can spend minutes giggling uncontrollably over things that no one else finds funny.

I love love love the movie Mean Girls. I can quote almost every line and apply said quotes to almost any real life situation.

I hate the word slacks.

My socks never match. Who even has the time to find each pair and roll them up together?

I have a terrible habit of picking at my split ends. I don't know when it came about but it's been awful for my hair. It's an obsessive habit and I don't know how to stop.

I love owls. I taught the one-year-old I babysit to say "owl." I don't know when I was first drawn to them... maybe around my senior year of high school. But I do love anything owl and people give them to me as gifts quite frequently. (For some reason, people also give me elephants, so I have an elephant collection as well. Which is cool. I like elephants.)

Even though I moved to Chicago to try something completely new and different and try life in the big city - and I'm glad I did - I get incredibly lonely sometimes and wonder if I made the right choice.

When I'm sad, I'll watch sad movies or listen to sad songs. Rather than watch or listen to something that will cheer me up, I put on something sad so that I have an excuse to cry and can pretend that I'm crying because I want Noah and Allie to end up happily ever after, and not because of my own life.

I don't know how to ride a bike. Well that's not true. I understand the concept of riding a bike. I just can't do it. I just can't keep pedaling and I always tip over.

I love eggnog. When I was younger my dad used to buy me a jug the first time he saw it at the store. The concept of someone not liking eggnog was baffling to me for the longest time. For the past 2 or 3 years I've had a tradition of drinking eggnog with SoCo while carving pumpkins.

Although I'm extremely independent and need my space, when I fall for someone, I fall hard. All of my past relationships have had a huge impact on me, and I have learned from each one of them. I don't regret any of them, nor do I wish I was still with any of them.

Sometimes I think in a British accent.

18 July 2012

Southern Dreams

As of late I've found myself daydreamin' about the South. Southern style, Southern interior design, and most importantly, a Southern man. It is currently my fantasy to find myself a nice, non-Republican Southern man to marry and live out our lives drinkin' sweet tea and makin' pie in our simple but charmin' house with our oh-so-adorable children.

What's so appealing about the South, you ask? The landscape, for one. I love the shabby chic style of some country homes. I also admire Southern Belles. The way they never leave the house without getting done up. The way they can keep a smile on their faces no matter what. The way they can say incredibly catty things with a southern drawl and make it sound completely non-offensive.

I came to Chicago to experience big city life, and here I am fantasizing about a nice country cottage in the middle of nowhere. Silly, isn't it? I don't know how long this fantasy will last, but for now I'm content to imagine my future as a Southern Belle. Now I know - Southern Belles are born, not made. But a girl can dream, right?

Here are some tidbits I came across in my obsession with all things Southern this week.

13 July 2012

Happy Weekend!

It's Friday! Which means I'll be headed to work in a couple hours and then again tomorrow. But I have Sunday off, which hasn't happened in a while. So I hope to find something fun/relaxing to do. Hope y'all have a great weekend!

10 July 2012



I use Aveeno shampoo and conditioner. My favorite is the Nourish + Strengthen, but I like the Nourish + Moisturize as well. I do not wash my hair every day, however. My hair is pretty dry and damaged from years of coloring and straightening, and washing every day would only make it worse. I usually wash my hair every third day. (I do shower every day, I just pull my hair up on the days I don't lather, rinse and repeat.)

I use this stuff in an attempt to restore my damaged locks. It's supposed to mend split ends (of which I have many) and make your hair a million times shinier and stronger. I'm not sure if it does, but it definitely makes my fried tresses softer, which I dig.

I've never been into having big hair. However, I recently received a bad haircut that's something akin to a mullet. In order to pull off the Joan Jett-esque rocker chic shag, I need volume. That's where this stuff comes into play. It adds volume and doesn't leave my hair too sticky. It does not, however, last 24 hours like the name would imply.


I love this luminizer. I smear it on my cheekbones and put a dab along the bridge of my nose. It adds a bit of glow without making you look too bronzy. Plus, it smells great!

I love love love this tint. It's too pale for my lips but just right on my cheeks when I want a pop of color to brighten up my face. I never thought blush would be a staple in my makeup routine, but here it is.

Lip butter. I'm not the biggest lipstick fan, but this stuff is great. It is so buttery and moisturizing and they have a great selection of colors. My current fave is Tutti Frutti. I like to go heavy on the mascara, skip the shadow, and add this fun splash of orange.

This duo is my current eye shadow obsession. I bought "On Set" on a whim at Sephora when I was having a crummy day and I do not regret it one bit. They go on smoothly and are easy to blend. The colors are gorgeous, with just the right amount of shimmer. 


This is my everyday body lotion. It's thick but absorbs well and leaves my skin nice and hydrated, even in the winter. I love the smell, which is fresh and tropical without being overwhelming.

I've been wearing this scent daily for a couple months now. I love almost all the scents in this line, actually. They come in adorable cocktail shaker-shaped bottles and all the boxes look like little houses to go with the kind of girl the scent represents. This one is sweet and playful, with a sexy undertone.

06 July 2012

Avocado Tuna Salad

It's 102 degrees right now. And humid. Gross. This kind of sweltering heat almost ruins my appetite. Almost. For lunch today, I wanted something light, but filling, as I won't have a proper dinner tonight since I'll be at work. The solution? Tuna salad! Fish feels less filling than other meats but still provides the protein and energy to get me through the day. 

My Avocado Tuna Salad

1 can tuna, packed in olive oil
1/2 avocado
some finely chopped red onion
4 or 5 cherry tomatoes, quartered
couple squirts of Miracle Whip
some chopped cilantro
juice from half a lime
pepper, to taste

Mix all ingredients together.

I piled mine on a piece of whole grain toast, topped it with a side of cheddar cheese, and popped in the oven for a few minutes to make a tuna melt. It would be good on its own, stuffed in a pita or on a bed of arugula as well! What I loved about this salad was the freshness of it. The tuna, combined with lime juice and fresh cilantro was light and summery, yet filling. Perfect.

Summer Intentions

Since I'm no longer in school, summer has a different feel to it. Summer used to be a nice break from classes, and even though I've worked every summer since I was 17, at least I had a couple months with no homework and more time for friends. Now it's just a few (extremely) hot months and I'll still be working the same 5-6 days a week. In an attempt to recapture some of the magic of summer I decided to make a list! This is my Summer Manifesto.

Eat lots of fresh fruit
Go to (at least one) outdoor concert
Spend at least an hour a day outdoors
Try new salad recipes
Write more
Learn to ride a bike
Have a picnic
Hang out with my cousins more
Find a spot to watch the sunset
Mini road trip with my mom
Visit different farmers markets

02 July 2012

Learning to be alone

I typically don't have a problem being alone. I used to savor my alone time. However, when solitude is forced upon me, rather than being an option, that's a different story. That's when being alone turns into loneliness. Loneliness, I do not like. 

I don't have any true friends in the city. I have people to socialize with after work, but no one I'm truly close to. A (couple) good friend(s) from back home told me this is normal. They both said that it will take time to make true friends and not to push it if the people aren't right. I think know they're right. I don't want to force myself to spend time with people that aren't right, or good, for me just because I'm lonely. I'll find my niche eventually, but right now I need to learn to spend time alone. 

My uncle told me that I should take advantage of this time in my life. I can do whatever I want without discussing it with anyone or feeling obligated to invite anyone along. He said that this is the only time I will have for the rest of my life that is truly my own. Once I get settled into a career or a group of friends or a relationship my time will never be completely mine again. He's right, too. Kind of. I do have work obligations and since I live with a family, I have obligations to them. But, for the most part, my free time is my own. And that's exciting, I guess. 

Problem is, I don't like doing certain things alone. I don't like going out to eat alone. I'm sure I could enjoy a museum or the zoo alone, but it doesn't particularly appeal to me. So, I need to learn to be comfortable doing things on my own. And that's a challenge. But it's one I'm willing to accept and maybe even embrace. I don't want to look back on this time in my life and regret the way I spent it.