Have a great week guys, and if anyone has any suggestions for leather, brown/cognac riding boots I'd greatly appreciate it! After many repairs my boots of 5+ years died last year, and I need a replacement! To see what I'm up to between posts follow me over at Instagram!
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Tis the season for Cosby sweaters, cozy plaid scarves (pulling the trigger any day now), and riding boots! With a few White Barn candles by my side, I'm ready. Although today is the first day of fall I feel like the weather has been ready on and off for the past few weeks. A few of these mornings have been brisk!
Last fall, I definitely had much more free time then I do now, but I still plan on hitting a few things on last fall's bucket list as well as sharing and enjoying the season's merriment whenever I can, one leaf picture at a time. One of my favorite things about fall is that the weather completely justifies my love for sweaters, scarves, and boots. Luckily there's a few city love, fine finds, and home inspiration posts around the corner while I figure out how to best take outfit pics. When I'm not in my favorite jeans, I'm remixing summer pieces with sweaters and leggings, so birthday and Thanksgiving shopping can't come fast enough!
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Beauty? Yes. Empowerment? Yes. Equality? Yes. I think most people would agree. I was introduced to Alaffia, a company that supports all three, a few months ago during a trip to Whole Foods. I saw a tweet about a $1 sale on bar soap, so I thought I'd check it out. And of course buy strawberries, donut peaches, and a bunch of other things too. Anyways, what I found was the most delicious smelling coconut soap from an even greater company.
"Alaffia advances gender equality, helps to alleviate poverty and enriches lives with authentic beauty products based on fair trade, hand-crafted shea butter. We pay fair wages to members of our cooperatives in Togo, and use the funds from this soap and other Alaffia products to conduct our community empowerment projects."This includes things like maternal health care, environmental, and educational initiatives. Basically, these are people making good soap and doing good things.
It also doesn't hurt that the bar fits perfectly in my dove soap dish from Serendip boutique. I almost didn't want to use it. They are many scents to choose from (lavender, vanilla, and mint just to name a few), but the coconut smells amazing. It's subtle but leaves a refreshing coconut scent on your hands after washing. Even when it's not on sale it runs for less than $3, and it's worth trying even if just to support some good causes. You could easily bundle a few of these in some burlap with twine or ribbon for an inexpensive yet thoughtful gift. Basically, it's good all the way around. Alaffia also has a face, hair, and skincare line that I'm looking forward to trying.
Good stuff, I know. I hope you grab one of these babies at your next trip to Whole Foods, and let me know if you have suggestions for any other Alaffia products!
What are some of your favorite beauty finds?
Friday, September 12, 2014
I meant to do something special for my 100th post, but somehow I ended up with a post about pears. Coincidentally enough this is my 101st post, which is appropriate because I consider it to be a bit of a crash course about me. I call it: "ELE 101." Thank you for all the love and support you guys have shown me over this past year. It feels great to connect with total strangers through common interests, life and style. Lately I've been adjusting to this new phase in my life and learning how to manage my work, so I haven't been posting as much as I would like to (I have drafts for days). However, with my first set of exams out the way I've realized how necessary blogging is, even if it's just a few minutes a day as stress relief. I hope my regular readers and new visitors alike enjoy learning a little more about me through a little Q & A, and stick around! There's more to come :-)
I was so flattered when Nadia emailed me a few weeks ago nominating me for the Liebster Award. I really admire the style of her blog and beauty posts, so it was great to hear she enjoys my little blog just as much. I also want to send some love out to the adorably sweet Kelli over at A Deeper Joy who also inspires me. She contacted me a while ago about answering some similar questions that I never got around to. So please consider this to be your challenge accepted as well!
1. Are you a texter or a caller?
I'm more of an "in-personer" for catching up, but LDRing it has made me a caller. Text is my favorite for quick communication though.
2. How long have you known your closest friend?
I'd say my bf J, going on six years. Started off Organic Chemistry lab partners where he thought I was gonna wash all the dishes (glassware) all the time. He was mistaken, but he came to love me anyway. The rest is history. I'd also say my mom, my oldest friend, all my life, all day, everyday.
3. What is one product that you recommend to everyone?
Wish I could offer some kind of game changing product, but I'm still trying to figure out what works best, for me at least. I keep it pretty simple, but the minute I figure it out I'll let you know! I will say that I love things that can be used multiple ways, so I'm sure something like that.
4. Are you an online or in store shopper?
Store. I've found that many of the things I thought were amazing online don't hold up to my expectations in store. On the other hand, I've found the most amazing things in store that I wouldn't have given a second look online. I also always end up finding the best little pieces in store and some great clearance/final sale items when I least expect it. However, you can find the most amazing things online that you can't find in store, and you're not limited by geography. So, yet again, I guess it depends.
5. What is your most worn item of clothing?
My Longchamp bag, just because over the last few years I've "worn" that more then anything else. It's lightweight, holds up very well, and great for traveling. Luckily for me it was a gift, but I think it's worth every penny. Check out my review (pictures taken with my old Blackberry before it expired, but it's at least pretty thorough). After that I'd also say leggings in general, black and grey "long and lean" tanks from Target, and my "always skinny" jeans from the Gap.
6. What is your favourite holiday?
Christmas! As a Christian, I love celebrating the birth of Jesus, but I also love the energy of the season. Regardless of your beliefs, the spirit of Christmas has a way of temporarily penetrating all aspects of society and our culture. Acts of kindness, giving, gifting (one of my favorite things to do!), spending time with loved ones. Lights, decorations, holiday shopping, the food. The movies, holiday specials, the music, special episodes of t.v. shows. For a short period of time, everything you see and hear is different. Even the news. You see the best of people. People are generally more kind and compassionate. There is a greater emphasis on good. It has a different meaning and significance for different people, but at the heart of it is love. It's unifying.
7. What is one material possession you couldn't live without?
Hate to say it, but my phone. Even with the limits of my broken Blackberry, that thing never left my side. But thank God for the iPhone! Oh the many perks of an upgrade.
8. What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?
I think people would say an easy one is getting into medical school. I consider this to be the fulfillment of a huge goal. This was a long journey towards a lifelong dream that required a great deal of faith, but really it's just beginning. As grateful as I am for it, I don't feel like I've achieved my greatest accomplishment yet. I can't fully explain it, but I get a sense that there's much more, that the greatest still lies ahead. I'm not sure if I'll ever achieve it. It will constantly be replaced by something else (graduation, marriage and children, saving a life). For instance, right now I'd say going to bed caught up with the day's material is a great accomplishment. At this point I've learned to dream big, but take things day by day. It's the achievement of daily goals that paves the way for future success.
9. Are you a hot or cold beverage person?
Depends. Let's just say I like my hots hot and my colds cold. But I am most definitely a beverage person.
10. What colour do you think suits you best?
Fall colors. Burgundy, brown, mustard, navy. If you look in my dresser or closet, it would say I think grey suits me best. I don't know why, but I tend to gravitate towards that color. I have a special place in my heart for teal/turquoise, my energy colors, but somehow it's not in my wardrobe so much as of late. I've been really digging neutrals lately. Maybe it's the change in season? Creams, tans, browns, black, and more grey of course. As well as chambray and denim, which are colors as far as I'm concerned.
11. What has been your biggest learning since starting your blog?
The same thing life continues to teach me. Faith and patience. In the beginning when I had no followers or blog friends as I'd rather call you guys, it felt like I was writing to myself, but the experience was a lesson in patience. It was also a lesson in not comparing myself to other people and remaining true to my own voice. It's easy to compare yourself to others in life, but everyone is on their own journey and everyone has their own style. This blog has really helped me to embrace that. This blog has been a much, much needed creative outlet, a way for me to explore and express many sides of who I am as well as my many interests. It's also given me more confidence in putting myself out there and taking chances. Most of the things we're concerned about will never happen, but the chance we don't take most definitely will not. Conditions won't always be perfect, but sometimes you have to just start where you're at, and you'll be surprised how much you learn along the way. It's also really taught me to trust my instincts, and listen to my inner voice. Things turn out much better that way :-)
Now because I like to color outside the lines, I'm going to do this a little bit different. Many of my favorite bloggers aren't newbies, and some of them are. Some of them have also already done these question/about me posts. While it doesn't hurt to do it again, I'm more interested in their favorites.
So, lovely lady writers of: Joy and Sunshine, Scrubs and Silhouettes, Making Restorations, A Little Bit of Lacquer, Extra Petite, Franish, The College Prepster, Visceral Maze, A Deeper Joy, and The View is Beautiful,
I know you're all out there being boss-ladies, but if you have a little time for a reader request I'd love to know:
What are your favorites?
Favorite beauty product
Favorite other product
Favorite city (and the best things to do in this city!)
Favorite piece of clothing (still available for purchase!)
Favorite online-only store
(I'd like to get some fun mail, something that's not a bill)
(I'd like to get some fun mail, something that's not a bill)
New posts, a compilation of previous posts, direct me to your old ones, or message me (I check email way too often). My blog reading may be on a little bit of a delay right now, but I always catch up to my favorites, and I would love to hear about yours! The same goes for my readers and visitors. When I'm not studying, I love eating, shopping, traveling, and trying new things. Basically all things pertaining to leisure. So, I'd love to hear about the same from you! Always open to suggestions!
Very long post I know, but it had to be done. Thanks for reading, liking, and following along! It means more than you know. And please leave your favorites and any suggestions for new posts and things for me to try below! I love hearing from you! Have a great weekend!
"Fine Finds" series starts next week, the first one is a "beauty" post!
When I'm not on Blackboard, I'm on Instagram. Follow me there :-)
Joy and Sunshine favorites here.
Making Restorations favroties here.