October Must-Haves

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

I can't believe that it's already November! This year has gone by so fast! October was a really unique month for me. I had my surgery at the end of September and I came home from the hospital the first week of October. I'm very limited to what I can do at this point in my recovery, so October was spent doing things a lot differently than I normally would.

Since yesterday was officially the end of October, I wanted to share some of my favorite things that helped me get through the month.

Chapstick - Between my surgery and the weather changing, my lips have been extremely chapped lately. I've been loving this chapstick because not only does it keep my lips super hydrated, but it also adds a hint of color and shimmer to my lips. I haven't been able to wear any makeup since my surgery so I love this chapstick because it makes me look a little more vibrant and awake.

Bath Bombs - I love taking a bath right before bed. It helps me to relax and is also a great wait to help manage my post-op pain. I love relaxing in the tub with a good book and my favorite bath bomb. I've been loving the Shoot For The Stars Bath Bomb from Lush. The beautiful blue color is so relaxing and I love the smell!

Puzzles - So my newest thing that I've been super into lately, especially this past month, is puzzles. There's only so much Netflix a person can watch, so I started doing a lot of puzzles during my recovery period. Disney is one of my favorite things in the world and I love Thomas Kinkade so I was so excited to find the Thomas Kinkade Disney puzzles. This one has been my favorite so far, but I also really enjoyed doing these. I'm currently working on an awesome 101 Dalmatians puzzle and it's super hard!

A Good Book - I've always been a big reader and last month I read a lot since I had more free time. I'm a huge fan of Stephen King so October was the perfect month to break out some of my favorite novels to get in the Halloween spirit. Last month I re-read IT and Misery. These are both two of my favorite Stephen King novels.

Planner - I had so many appointments last month and it was important that I didn't miss any of them. Last month my planner was with me at all times and was a great way to stay organized and keep track of appointments.

What products were you loving in October?

5 Ways To Reduce Stress

Monday, October 30, 2017

Good morning everyone! This time of the year can be extremely stressful. With the holidays quickly approaching and midterms right around the corner, it's very easy to get overwhelmed. Keeping calm and staying focused can be hard, but with these 5 tips, you will be able to tackle this holiday season feeling relaxed and de-stressed!

1. Adult Coloring Books - My absolute favorite way to de-stress! Adult coloring books have become extremely popular over the past year. There are so many different themes and styles out there and there is truly something for everyone! I have several adult coloring books varying from mandalas to Disney theme. Coloring books are a fun, simple way to relax your mind and be creative! You can find these books pretty much anywhere from Target to Amazon. Here is one of my favorites.

2. Exercise - Not only is moving your body important, but it also gives you more energy. Whether it's going for a walk or taking a Zumba class, exercising is a great way to de-stress yourself. Not to mention burning a few extra calories doesn't hurt, especially during the holiday season! ;) Prior to my surgery, I was loving PiYo. It's a cross between Pilates and yoga. The workouts seem easy and simple, but by the end of my workout, I was dripping in sweat. Totally worth it!

3. Write/Keep a Journal - What better way to de-stress than by writing down your thoughts? We all know that bottling up our feelings only makes things worse. Writing down your thoughts forces you to think about the events that happened throughout the day and helps to clarify your thoughts and feelings. Whether you start a blog to share your thoughts with the world or keep it old school and write them down in a notebook, taking those few extra minutes to reflect on your day is a great way to de-stress and stay grounded! If you're in the market for a new journal, Michaels has a great selection!

4. Watch Your Favorite Movie or TV Show - Who doesn't love watching their favorite movie or TV show? Whenever I'm having a bad day or I'm feeling stressed out, I watch a few episodes of The Office and my day is instantly better. 

5. Read a Book - Reading is a great way to escape from the stress of everyday life. If you're having a stressful day, set aside some time to read a book. It doesn't have to be a best seller, just something that interests you. I try to read for at least 30 minutes every night. Not only does it help relax my mind, it also helps me sleep better!

Of course, there are many other ways to reduce stress. These are just my favorite ways to unwind, relax, and keep my mind occupied. Let me know in the comments what your favorite ways to reduce stress are.

What I'm Watching

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Last month I had a major surgery that I'm still recovering from, so I've had a lot of time to catch up on my shows and check out some new ones. I usually wait until a series is on Netflix and binge watch it because I get so impatient waiting for answers to all of the questions I have as I watch every week. But lately, I've been doing things a little differently and have been watching shows weekly as they air on live TV. I've found that it's actually more exciting and suspenseful waiting for the next episode to see what's going to happen. I kind of like it!

Today, I wanted to share with you what I've been watching lately.

Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders - I'm a huge true crime fan and have always been intrigued by this case so when I heard this was coming out I knew I had to watch it. I like this series because I think they do a great job at showing all sides of the story. I often find that with shows like this they are usually either extremely biased or show only one person's point of view, so I like that with this show we get to hear from several different people involved in this case. The actors do a great job and are very believable, sometimes I forget that this is a scripted show because it feels so real. If you're in to true crime I would highly recommend this show. All episodes are on Hulu so you can get caught up!

The Mindy Project - So this is funny because The Office is my favorite TV show of all time, but I never really cared for Mindy's character, Kelly Kapoor. I was looking for suggestions for a new show to watch a while back and a lot of people suggested this knowing that I was a fan of The Office. For the longest time, I refused to watch this show because I thought her character would be too similar to Kelly. I finally gave in and started watching it and I'm so glad that I did because it's quickly become one of my favorite shows. It's a nice change from her role on The Office and I find Mindy's character to be so loveable. I'm actually kinda sad that this is the final season. This show has it all - romance, drama, comedy, so if you haven't watched it yet, I suggest checking it out. All seasons are also available on Hulu for you to stream.

Superstore - The executive producer for this show was a writer for The Office (do you see a pattern here? LOL) so I had high expectations when this show first came out. I can honestly say that it has lived up to every single one of them. While Superstore isn't exactly like The Office, it gives off a similar vibe and has a wide variety of personalities and roles just like The Office did. Similar to The Mindy Project, this show has comedic, romantic, and dramatic moments and I love how they cover serious moments in a comedic manner without coming off tacky or overdoing it. This is one of the few shows that makes me laugh out loud and always cheers me up if I'm having a bad day. This show can also be streamed on Hulu if you are interested in checking it out.

Riverdale - I was bored one day and decided to check this show out on Netflix. I was instantly hooked and I'm pretty sure I finished the entire first season in 2 days. This show is so suspenseful and always leaves me on the edge of my seat every week. Season 2 just started and I already have so many questions. A few of my friends also watch this show and we are constantly texting each other while watching each episode coming up with theories of our own and asking one another questions. I'm really curious how this season is gonna turn out and I can't wait to find out more. If you're interested in checking Riverdale out, you can watch season 1 on Netflix and new episodes are also up on The CW website.

Eric & Jessie - I watched this show years ago when it first came out and was excited to see that it was coming back after 3 years! I'm not a huge fan of reality TV, but I love this show. I think Eric and Jessie are the cutest couple and I love their relationship. I really like how supportive they are of one another and the fact that they are each other's biggest fans, plus their kids are super cute! I look forward to Wednesday because every week I go over to my mom's house and we watch this together!

And last but not least...

Football - I am a huge football fan and I love the New England Patriots. Every week I make sure to watch the Patriots game, but I also try to watch every Thursday Night Football game as well regardless of who is playing. Sometimes I'll even sneak in a couple of other games on Sundays in between the Patriots game. My boyfriend is also a Patriots fan so football is something that we can bond over and enjoy together. I love lounging around on Sundays with our favorite snacks cheering on our team. I can't wait to see where this season takes us!

Go Pats!

I'm always looking for new things to watch so if you have any suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments below. I know I'm looking forward to Stranger Things season 2 in just a few days. I can't wait to watch it!

What shows are you currently loving?

Fall Lip Colors

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Happy Tuesday everyone! Up until the past year or so, I was always too scared to try a bold lip color. My go to was this shade that is pretty close to my natural lip tone. Last Fall I decided to try out some new bolder lip colors. I started out with a nice red perfect for the holidays and a deep burgundy. I was instantly hooked and started buying more and more shades.

Lately, I've been seeing so many posts on Instagram about ColourPop and their amazing lip colors. After reading so many awesome reviews I decided to pick up two of their lip bundles - Truth Be Told and Out and About. $30 for 6 lip glosses with free shipping is a steal in my book!

I am so impressed with these colors and needless to say I will be buying more! Today I wanted to share with you some swatches and my initial thoughts.

I'll start with Truth Be Told. How cute is this packaging? The middle color, First Of All, is what really caught my eye. What I like about these lip glosses is that they are fast drying so you don't have to worry about smudges. They also stay on all day. I had a tough time removing them even with makeup remover wipes. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing LOL.

Check out these swatches:
(Top to bottom: First Of All, Ambush, Cashing Out)

Overall, I was impressed with the colors and the quality. My only complaint is that Cashing Out is a little darker than I expected. But I'm still going to try it out because I think it could be perfect with the right outfit and a neutral eye!

Next up is Out And About and just like the Truth Be Told bundle I am loving the packaging! Now I know I said I wanted to try bolder colors in the beginning of the post, but since I'm new to this brand I figured I would try out some more neutral colors as well. I am in love with these shades and both the satin and matte formulas are great. I'm pleased with how consistent the products are between the two bundles as these glosses dry fast and last all day just as the last bundle I talked about did.

More swatches for you all to check out:
(From left to right: Times Square, Barracuda, Viper)

I'd have to say that this is my favorite out of the two. The colors are more neutral, but add a little more pop of color than a typical nude lip product would. I think these colors can be worn on a day to day basis as well as for more formal events.

Overall, I am very pleased with both lip bundles and am so happy that I decided to finally try out ColourPop. I am extremely impressed with everything about these products from the packaging to the wear time. I can't wait to try more of their products!

Have you tried ColourPop? What is your favorite product?

Allow Me To Introduce Myself

Monday, October 23, 2017

Hello everyone! Welcome to my first blog post. I thought it would be fun to introduce myself so you can get a better idea of who I am and what brought me here. I've been following many different blogs for a while now and thought I would give it a try myself, so bear with me as I get into the swing of things.

My name is Ashley and I'm from Upstate New York. I graduated from college in 2014 (I can't believe it's already been 3 years!) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and a minor in Business Administration. Currently, I work as a Brand Strategist for a local marketing company. My time in my current role has allowed me to get more familiar with understanding not only how different brands operate, but what it takes to be a brand. Prior to starting this job, I was a Sales Assistant for a local news station working with both broadcast and digital media. It was here that I discovered my passion for digital marketing. I can honestly say that I have my dream job and I've been fortunate enough to work for a company where I can learn and grow in an ever-changing industry.

Family is the most important thing to me. My mom is my best friend and I find myself at her house more often than my own apartment. She has always been supportive of me and everything that I do and I truly don't know what I would do without her. I also have two older sisters that I am extremely close with and have been blessed with 2 adorable nephews and a beautiful niece. Being an aunt has been one of the most rewarding parts of my life. It feels so good to know that my niece and nephews look up to me and appreciate all of the time that we spend together. And the saying is true, kids really do say the darndest things!

I've been in an amazing relationship for over two years with the most wonderful guy. It's actually a pretty funny story how we met. We both went to the same elementary school when we were younger - I was a year older so when I was in kindergarten he was in pre-k. I never would've thought that the same boy I played on the playground with during recess would be my soulmate. It wasn't until about 3 years ago when we re-connected at an old job. At first, I wanted nothing to do with him, but after talking every day for months and getting to know one another better I quickly realized that I wanted him to be apart of my life. And after that...the rest is history!

Besides my job, family, and boyfriend I have a lot of other interests. I'm a huge Disney fan and I'm obsessed with Minne Mouse. I must admit that I'm a little bit of a nerd and I not only collect Disney movies, but Disney Funko Pops as well. I also love to read and try to read at least one book a month. I'm a huge fan of thrillers and dystopian novels, but am open to anything that piques my interest so if you have any good recommendations leave them in the comments below! I also love fashion and am a total beauty junkie. Some of my favorite places to shop are Kate Spade, Nordstrom, Express, J. Crew and of course Sephora and Ulta. My favorite makeup brands are Urban Decay, Benefit, Tarte, and Mac. I plan on sharing tons of beauty and fashion related posts so stay tuned!

Whew, that was a lot! Thank you for reading. I am still in the process of getting everything set up, so be on the lookout for updates. I plan on posting weekly on Mondays-Wednesdays as well as Saturdays and I already have some fun posts lined up! I can't wait to get to know you all better and if you have any suggestions or ideas for posts that you would like me to do feel free to leave them in the comments below.