July 2013 - Prep Essentials





College & Post-Grad

College & Post-Grad
College & Post-Grad

Lilly Pulitzer Calendar!

To help you get organized for this hectic month, I have made a downloadable Lilly Pulitzer calendar template! I had way too much free time my first week of summer before my internship started so I made this for myself and have decided to share it with you! 

Print it out, put it on your bulletin board and fill it out with all of your back-to-school events, appointments and To-Dos!

(PS I am no expert at this so if there is a problem with the download at all just let me know in the comments and I will fix it ASAP!)

If this goes well I am going to try and make one of these with a different Lilly print at the beginning of each month! Enjoy!



Tea Time

If you follow my blog you know how much I love tea. I never drink caffeine or coffee so (decaf) tea is the one thing I really have on a daily basis. There's this amazing store called Teavana that sells dozens of amazing tea blends, accessories, and more. My favorite part is they always have tons of yummy samples out in the store for you to try! 

(I am definitely guilty of going in two different times during my shopping trip on Sunday. Oops!)

The problem is it's a little pricey, but I finally caved and bought myself a small little bag of my absolute favorite tea they sell. I tried a sample of the iced tea version when I was in Detroit and it's been on my wish list ever since. 

It's called Berry Kiwi Colada and its amazing. Super refreshing for summer, and very fruity without being overpowering. I love that you can make any of their teas hot or iced so it works year round!

Then I found out you can even go into the store and they will brew you a cup of whatever tea you want - iced or hot! Amazing! It's probably a good thing for my wallet that we don't have one of these stores in Oxford. 

What's your favorite kind of tea? Any suggestions for new ones I should try??


...And Then There Was Rest

So July has been a pretty crazy month. I've been traveling nonstop, visiting friends, and (I'll admit) probably doing a little too much partying. Well...its finally catching up to me. I am totally exhausted, injured (again!), and starting to get sick. Now is definitely the time to take care of myself and get better before I head back up to Oxford.

I found a really great article that lists a ton of simple and quick ways to take better care of yourself during times of high stress or busy times in your life - things I definitely need to start doing every day! Sometimes I get so caught up with work, school, friends, and everything else that I completely forget to take care of myself in even the simplest ways like getting enough sleep or eating three meals a day. (Seriously that happens all the time; I get super busy and just completely forget to eat a meal!) So these are some of the best ways to just take a few extra minutes out of your day and take care of yourself!

1. Drink some tea. I know most people when they get stressed reach for the coffee, but don't! Tea is a much better option because it won't dehydrate you or give you a caffeine rush that crashes later.

2. Take 5 extra minutes in the morning and before you go to bed to just stretch and breathe. Even a few minutes a day of breathing and just focusing your mind can make a huge difference in your stress and anxiety levels. 

3. Write it down. Write everything you need to get accomplished that day down somewhere. It will help you keep your thoughts organized and can reduce the stress factor if it turns out to be less than you thought it was. It will also keep you from getting distracted from floating thoughts of other tasks.

4. Keep a planner and schedule some Me-Time. Keeping a planner is absolutely essential, and will help you keep track of deadlines and other events that need to get done. More importantly, though, schedule a time each day for absolutely no appointments! No meetings, no appointments, no assignments - that time is strictly for you to do whatever you want. Take a quick nap, read a book, watch a show...it doesn't have to be a long time, as long as you schedule it somewhere!

5. Light candles or use essential oils. Using shower products or lotions containing essential oils like lavender (for calming) or peppermint (to wake up) will help keep you relaxed and focused.

6. Once a week have a prepare day, where you sit down and figure out everything you have going on that week so you can prepare. If you know you're going to be busy, consider pre-making some meals so you can grab them on the go.

7. Do the dreaded tasks first. We all have those tasks on our To-Do lists that we keep putting off because they are either the most time-consuming or the ones we are most dreading. Getting those tasks out of the way first, even though its irritating, will help you feel much less stressed without them weighing over your head all day. 

8. Eat healthier and snack more. Instead of having large meals three times a day, try snacking on some healthy treats throughout the day. It will help keep your energy level up and prevent overeating due to stress.

9. SLEEP. I know this seems obvious but when people get busy the number one thing we de-prioritize is sleep. You will function a lot better and be much more efficient and productive if you've had a good night's sleep.

For more ideas on ways to take care of yourself, check out the article I mentioned earlier!

How do you take care of yourself when you're stressed?


iPhone Makeover Tutorial - Get Preppy Icons for your iPhone!

So I know I said I was going to make a tutorial on how to change your iPhone apps to make them preppy and adorable, but I found a great post that already has one made! It couldn't be a better tutorial, including screenshots so you know exactly what to do every step of the way. I am attaching the link so all of you who are interested can check it out!

*Very Important: Pay attention to her side note that you cannot under any circumstance delete the original app! Cocoppa simply creates a shortcut with a cuter image. I moved all of my original apps into a folder on the very last page of my phone so they are hidden from view. Just make sure not to delete them or you will delete the real app!*

If you have any questions feel free to comment and I will try to answer them, but I think she covers pretty much everything in her tutorial!

Here is the link to the tutorial!

These are the pros/cons of using the Cocoppa app, in my opinion:

1. Hello?! Its ADORABLE.
2. You can customize it and change it up whenever you want. 
3. When your friends try to hack your facebook status, all of the different icons throw them off! (Speaking from personal experience....)

1. You still have to keep the original app icon (but you can put them in a folder in the back and you'll never see them!)
2. They don't work for all apps! Like phone, messages, notes...etc.
3. Sometimes it causes the app to hesitate for a half second when you open it (not a big deal, really, but just a little something I have noticed!)

Custom & Cute Apps for your iPhone!

Some of you may have heard of or seen pictures of people who are changing their apps in their iPhones to have really cute patterns or pictures instead of the standard ones the apps come with. (I am one of those people - I had way too much free time when I broke my ankle in March!)

No, you don't have to 'jailbreak' your phone to do this. All you have to do is download an app called Cocoppa! *Full disclosure: this app was made in Japan and definitely is not the most user-friendly or English-friendly app I have ever used, but if you do it right, its super easy and totally worth it! I love looking at my phone screen now*

If you're ever super bored one day at work or in class (maybe you're out of candy crush lives??) this will definitely kill some time for you! Here is a screenshot of my phone after I changed all my apps!  (I moved them all onto one page so you could see it - I could never have this many apps on one page on my phone!)

PS they have really cute wallpapers too - that's where I got mine from!

What do you think of this trend?



And The Winner Is....

The winner of the What's In A Name giveaway is J. Parker! Congratulations! Thank you so so much to everyone who participated. I have really been wanting to do a giveaway for a long time and I definitely learned a lot for next time! I apologize that it took so me so long to choose a winner, it took me a while to find a good random generator that could select a winner for me! 

I also want to again thank Zoe Stanley for being so generous and putting up her amazing item for the giveaway, and I hope all of you keep an eye on her Etsy site because she is constantly adding great new items.

I'm hoping to do another giveaway of some sort within the next month for all of my amazing followers so be on the lookout for that if you weren't the lucky winner this time!

Congrats again, J. Parker! I will get in touch with you privately to get your details and send you your fabulous new mason jar tumbler!


Tagged Tuesday: Live Colorfully!

I just got tagged in my first Tag Tuesday post by Lindsay from Pearls Please. The tag is for Colors of the Rainbow, so here are my favorite items in every color!

Okay, so I went a little Kate Spade heavy but who better for this post than the brand whose motto is "Live Colorfully?"

Your turn, J. Parker! Good luck!

Thanks Lindsay! This was really fun (and way harder than it looks!)

Just A Reminder

Today is the last day to enter the giveaway for the adorable monogrammed mason jar tumbler from "What's In A Name!" Don't miss out!


What Time Is It?

Watches seem to have lost their functionality with the evolution of cell phones, but that doesn't mean they've lost their use as a fashion accessory! I'm definitely guilty of wearing a watch and never using it to tell time. (Does anyone else ever check their phone to see the time then have to check again 5 seconds later because you forgot to pay attention? That's probably just me...)

The problem is that some of the best (fashionable) watches are so expensive! I only have one right now and it is definitely my favorite accessory, but it was my big splurge item for Christmas. (The tortoise and gold Michael Kors - it was on my Christmas list for an entire year!) 

I knew there had to be some other great options out there that don't involve breaking the bank, although Michael Kors really knows how to make a great watch.

Here is a list of some of the best (and my personal favorite) splurge and save watches so you can be fashionable on any budget!

                              $250                                       $195                                        $250

                                     $29                                   $20                                                $40

What are your favorite timepiece accessories?


Essential Reading

I've been trying to make a summer book list...well...all summer! It's harder than I thought. When I make book lists I like to go sit in the book store for hours on the floor and go over the backs of pretty much every single one. It's a bit of an all day event, and I really just haven't had the time! I have been reading a couple recommendations from my Kindle and from friends, and I just finished one that I absolutely had to share with all of you!

Granted, this book is essentially just some easy and girly beach-read, but sometimes those ones are my favorite! I like to be able to just lay out by the pool or on the beach and dive into some cliché chick novel, and this one was definitely no exception. It was witty, inspiring, refreshingly realistic, and eerily reminded me of myself. I found myself laughing on page one, and that is no small feat.

If you're looking for something cute, quick and funny to finish off your summer, Brooklyn Girls by Gemma Burgess is for you! It's the first in a series, and you just can't help but fall in love with Pia and her friends as they try and tackle the first few months out of college and the real world of Brooklyn. I think no matter who you are you'll find yourself relating to one of the characters and laughing right along with them. Ok, I'll shutup now but seriously read this! You won't regret it.

I can't wait for the next installment in the series!


All That Glitters

I love sparkles and glitter more than I should. I'm like a little kid - if I see something sparkly I'll stare at it until someone snaps me out of it. Whenever I'm wearing sparkly jewelry while driving I swear I'm gonna crash because the sun hits it and I catch myself staring at it instead of the road. Oops!

I just love the way sparkles can totally transform an outfit and make it look glamorous and beautiful. Even just one little accessory makes all the difference. Here are some of my absolute favorite sparkly accessories (some of them I own, some of them I have been coveting for the longest time!!)

What are some of your favorite sparkly accessories? Is anyone else as glitter obsessed as I am?



What's In A Name: My First Giveaway!

Being a seller on Etsy myself, I am constantly on the lookout for other sellers on the site with great handmade preppy products. One of my new discoveries is "What's In A Name", a shop by Zoe Stanley. Her stuff is so great and really reasonably priced!

She can customize any of her products with your monogram, and even offers Greek letters! Her water bottles and mason jars are so perfect and adorable for taking to class or sipping some sweet tea on the porch. I am totally in love. She has some other cups and glassware, including a tumbler and a personalized Lilly Pulitzer koozie!

Zoe is super sweet and even sent me one of her mason jars this week and a really cute monogrammed keychain and I'm obsessed! The mason jar is really durable, cute, and I carry it with me everywhere, and the keychain is already happily sitting on my keys. (I wish I had found her store before I got my little sister in my sorority, but oh well - more for me!) She was even generous enough to let me do my VERY FIRST GIVEAWAY with one of her products!! A very exciting day!

Definitely keep an eye out for some new products from Zoe in the next week or two, she is adding a lot of really great stuff!

The giveaway is for one of her awesome customizable mason jars! (Once a winner is selected we will get your initials or greek letters and Zoe will work on sending it out to you.)

How cute are those?!

Want to enter? Here are the rules:

1 entry: Comment on this post! (Make sure if you don't have a registered account that you post your name so I will be able to contact you if you win! Otherwise it will just say anonymous!)
1 additional entry: Follow my blog!
1 additional entry: "Like" the What's In a Name's Facebook Page!
2 additional entries: Post about this giveaway on your blog (be sure to include a link!)

[Be sure to include in your comment on this post which entries you qualify for, and yes I will be double checking!]

The giveaway will run from today until Tuesday, July 23 at 11:59 PM! The winner will be announced and contacted on Wednesday the 24th.

Good Luck!



Essential(s) of the Week 2

Well, two weeks have passed and as per usual my attention span for things I'm currently obsessing over has run out! So now I have a new list of things that I am currently in love with that are essential to my life -and sanity - just about every day!

(Seriously, I wasn't joking last time. I really do have a two week attention span with these things. It's bizarre)

So here they are, the latest obsessions and essentials of the week(s)!

1. Bumble and Bumble Prep. I literally never use any product whatsoever in my hair besides shampoo and conditioner - my hair gets oily way too easily and I like to leave it alone if I can. But this spray is actually amazing! Use when your hair is damp or almost dry, just a couple sprays, and it will protect it from heat and split ends without adding oils to your hair! ($20 seems a little steep but you only use a teeny tiny bit, trust me it lasts a long time!)

2. Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller. With all of the traveling I've been doing on top of the fact that sleep is a rare thing for me, I am so happy I found this product. Super cheap at any drugstore, and the always-cold temperature of the roller gets rid of puffy eyes in the morning and leaves you feeling refreshed. 

3. My new infinity necklace! I have had an obsession with the infinity symbol ever since that show Revenge came out on ABC, but the one thing I have never been able to find was the perfect infinity necklace! (I hate when necklaces are too short, I feel strangled.) I found mine in Michigan at a great little boutique called Haystacks and I am in love! (Check out their website - their stuff is amazing! Especially jewelry)

4. I am one of those people constantly making lists - To Do Lists, Packing Lists, Things I Want to Try, etc. With school creeping around the corner I have a lot of lists to make to get myself ready and all packed to go! These notebooks from Target are so adorable and super cheap - only $4! I have one in my purse at all times right now.

5. Skinny Pop! For the past few years I have completely written popcorn out of my diet, even at movie theaters. Skinny pop is amazing though! Its light, healthy (no seriously - it doesn't have anything artificial!), lowfat, and comes in little snack sized bags so you don't overdo it. Movie night just got a lot yummier.

What things are you loving right now?

PS I have decided to make this a bi-weekly post for this blog, so look out for it every other friday!



The State of Print

Being a guilty convert from paper reading products to e-readers, this post is probably a bit hypocritical. But I can't help but comment on the overwhelming decline of use of printed books and magazines. Trust me, I own a Kindle and it is one of my favorite purchases I've ever made; it was absolutely perfect for my trip to Europe because I read way too fast and couldn't have backpacked around Europe hauling a bunch of paperback books. But I really think its sad how rare it is to see someone holding an actual book these days.

There's still something so refreshing and comfortable about cracking open a new paperback book. The feel of the pages turning in your hands, the smell of the pages when you flip through them...(Yes I know I'm a huge nerd and I'm proud of it. I love reading!) And although I am one of the many that have switched over to the ever-popular e-readers, the one thing I really can't let go of is magazines. I will never, ever be able to read a magazine online.

I love flipping through magazines, smelling the perfume samples, and actually physically holding the pages in my hands. Besides, staring at a screen all day really kills my eyes - I crave being able to take a break from all the white light on my various screens and just some read some old-fashioned black and white print.

I'm a loyal magazine subscriber. I never ever get mail (unless its junk) so its always pretty exciting whenever my mailbox is filled up with various magazines. My favorite thing to do is grab some nail polish, a good chick flick, a glass of wine and one of my new magazines - I'll be entertained for hours. I'm pretty stubborn and set in my ways, I suppose, but to me magazines are just the one thing that I can't allow to transfer over to technology. They're too much fun when they're printed!

Which do you prefer: printed or online reading?

"We read to know that we are not alone"


Monogram Love

So earlier this year my little (Courtney) and I were spending our typical 5 hours on Pinterest together and we could not stop staring at these monogram PFG shirts! They were everywhere and so freakin' adorable! We had to get them. For those of you who don't know, PFG is a performance fishing gear shirt, and they have become very popular, especially in the South.

We ended up finding the best deal on Amazon, and took them to be monogrammed at this adorable little store in Louisville called Sew Unique that will monogram pretty much anything you bring to them - aka my new favorite store. In the end they only ended up costing us $40.00! (Such a steal - normal ones without the monograms cost around $50.00!)

Now this shirt is my new summer obsession - it is literally perfect for everything! I wear it to the lake, as a cover-up at the pool, I pretty much lived in it while I was in Michigan, sailing with my Dad, and everywhere in between! It is so comfortable and lightweight; it protects me from the sun and doesn't make me too hot! (Definitely a must when I got a brutal sunburn the first weekend at the lake!)

Of course, that wasn't enough for me and my little. We naturally had to buy matching monogram hats to go with our PFGs too!

By some cruel twist of fate, we somehow don't have a picture of the two of us in our shirts and hats! I don't know what's wrong with us. That will have to be fixed very soon, but for now I have one of just me!

(^^ Like the sideways ponytail?? ^^ Oops....)

P.S. If you don't want to go to the trouble of taking the shirt to get monogrammed yourself, Marley Lilly sells some great ones already monogrammed on their site!

Check out some other adorable monogrammed products by Marley Lilly here!


Flash Sale!

Marley Lilly is having a Back-To-School Flash Sale tonight!! For those of you that don't know, Marley Lilly is an amazing site that sells literally anything and everything monogrammed - aka heaven! (That's where I got my monogrammed wayfarer sunglasses from!) And I mean they sell everything...clothes, jewelry, school supplies, purses, sunglasses, swimsuits... They definitely believe the saying, "If it's not moving, monogram it!" Their site is amazing, and the flash sales are definitely the best time to buy anything because they knock the prices way down. Definitely worth checking out tonight if you're home between 8pm and 11pm!

Also, if you go to their Facebook page and like/share the picture I just posted above you can be eligible for $100 gift card to their site! 

Happy Shopping!



Must-See Movies of This Summer

Now that we are entering July, the summer heat is definitely in full swing. Entering my car after it has been roasting in the sun all day while I am at work is an absolutely torturous experience. Getting black leather interior seemed like a good idea at the time...

Some days all I want to do is turn off my phone and duck inside a movie theater all afternoon and enjoy the cold darkness with some popcorn and candy. Especially since summer is just about the only time that I ever have to actually see a movie while its still in theaters!

There are so many interesting movies coming out right now its hard to pick and choose! So I have compiled a list of what I think are the absolute must-see movies of this summer.

If you haven't already seen this movie this summer, you're doing it wrong. From the same director who brought us Moulin Rouge (quite possibly my favorite movie of all time) comes this enchanting love story brought to cinematic life, based off of the original book written by F. Scott Fitzgerald. You don't have to read the book to love the movie, but you should absolutely read it at some point in your life. I don't think theres a girl out there who doesn't fall in love with Jay Gatsby after watching this compelling story of glamour, glitz, wealth, a little too much partying, and of course, true love between star-crossed lovers born into two different worlds. 

An exclusive look into the alluring and prestigious mystique that is Bergdorf Goodman through the eyes of a tell-all documentary, featuring interviews with various designers, fashion icons and celebrities that describes the iconic role that this store has played throughout history for consumer America and the pursuit of the American dream. This movie looks witty, light, and so captivating - a perfect way to spend a summer afternoon. And let's be honest - who wouldn't want their ashes scattered in Bergdorf's?

3. The To-Do List (in Theaters July 26)

This movie is a hilarious twist on all of those cliché movies about virgin high school guys trying to seal the deal before they head off to college - this time, its about a girl! Its about Brandy Clark, an overachieving and obsessive-compulsive girl who has spent her entire life playing by the rules, until now. Finally determining that enough is enough, she takes a very analytical approach to combating her naive sentiments about sex, partying, and everything that goes with it. In true OCD fashion, she makes a To-Do List, consisting of all of the sexual encounters she is determined to experience before she leaves in August. Definitely a must-see!

4. The Spectacular Now (In theaters August 2)

Ok, I'll admit I was a little apprehensive about this one but it is getting incredible reviews. Normally I would ignore that, but it did win a Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Awards. Its a story of a budding romance between Sutter, aka 'Life of the Party', and Amy (Shailene Woodley), the invisible girl who ends up changing his entire life philosophy as they both struggle with their conflicting interests between living in the now and planning for the future. (Does anyone else find it funny that shes playing yet another character named Amy - see also her role in Secret Life of the American Teenager?) I'm an optimist, so although I haven't seen it yet I'm giving this one the benefit of the doubt and saying that it has serious potential. Definitely worth a shot! (PS its from the same writers as '500 Days of Summer'!)

5. Girl Most Likely (In Theaters July 19)

If you like awkward comedies, this one may be for you. This movie looks outrageously funny! The main character Imogene (Kristen Wiig - Bridesmaids anyone?) has a psychiatric break after her relationship and career crash and burn simultaneously, and ends up being forced to move home with her mother with whom she has a...complicated relationship with. Her eccentric mom rented out her room to a random stranger, is dating a man who is clearly a compulsive liar, and Imogene comes to the realization that she is going to have to learn to embrace her Jersey roots and bizarre family if she ever wants to be considered stable enough to live on her own again and get far, far away from the madness. Judging from the trailer, it looks like this one will have me laughing as hard as I did during Bridesmaids, with Kristen Wiig pulling out similar theatrics. Can't wait!

What are your thoughts on these movies? Any other suggestions?


PS There are links to all of the trailers if you just click on the movie titles!

Let It Go

The ability to simply let go is one of the hardest behaviors to learn, in my opinion. For some people (like me) it is harder than for others. I am cursed with becoming easily attached to things and never wanting to let them go, even when I should.

I don't think anyone can truly master the art of simply letting go and letting life happen. It is human nature to try and control and manipulate everything around us, because we all like to believe that we are the drivers of our own destiny. Maybe we are, but I am a firm believer in fate and its ability to change as we do.

So how do we distinguish the difference between stepping back and relinquishing control, and giving up? To me that feels like the invisible line that I am constantly in fear of crossing. If I stop pursuing something I truly desire because it just isn't happening, does that mean I am giving up? Or does it mean that mean that I am simply learning to let go and let life happen? I think my fear of giving up too quickly on something I want will prevent me from ever really being able to recognize the difference between the two.

I'm constantly seeing quotes on Pinterest that seem to be having the same conflicting battle. Half of them tell you that sometimes things end to make way for new beginnings, and half of them say that you should never, ever give up on something you truly want and that you will be rewarded for your persistence, and that life is too short to not take the reins.

The control freak in me makes it seem nearly impossible to trust that things will fall into their proper place, but I'm still trying to learn! So far the best advice I've gotten is to keep living your life as much as you can, staying busy and pursuing the dreams that are within your reach until it becomes clear to you which ones you should let go of. 



Big mistake with that road trip playlist... I totally left my favorite song out! Of course right after I made the list I download this new song and become completely obsessed with it and realized it should have been on the list. So a bonus song to the road trip playlist!

Wake Me Up by Avicii

I'm not kidding when I say I am obsessed with this song. I was so surprised that it was done by Avicii because it's so different from his normal stuff but he did a great job!


Road Trip Essentials

Finishing off the road trip theme of today, I have prepared a list of the absolute essentials for road trips, from which bags to bring and what to put in them!

1. A good-sized tote or purse to keep your wallet, keys, and everything in between organized and in one place. Personally I'm partial to a large Longchamp Le Pliage tote because it's what I use everyday and I think it's the perfect size!

2. A cute cooler to store snacks and waters in! I never eat fast food, so I always bring a cooler with me on road trips so I can bring some healthy alternatives to snack on while I drive. This insulated cooler bag from Lilly Pulitzer is too cute!

3. A duffel bag, of course! I'm a notorious over-packer (guilty as charged) so I try to just use my Vera Bradley duffel whenever I go on a trip - cute, and big enough to let me over-pack a little without getting too crazy. 

1. A cute tumbler, like this one from Lilly Pulitzer! I've really adamant about not using plastic water bottles on road trips because of the hazards of the sun heating up plastic water bottles in cars.. (If you haven't heard, it releases a chemical from the bottle that has been linked to breast cancer!)

2. An ipod (or some other mp3 player) stocked with perfect playlists so you can keep your eyes on the road and your mind on the music! Check out my road trip playlist here.

3. A good pair of sunglasses (polarized are better in my opinion). I'm currently obsessed with my monogrammed polarized wayfarer sunglasses from Marley Lilly! (I'm always too afraid to buy Ray-Bans because I have bad luck with sunglasses breaking and getting lost. Oops!)

4. Some healthy foods that are easy to snack on! I really try not to use road trips as an excuse to fill up on garbage foods - especially with all the driving I've been doing this summer. I would be seriously gaining weight otherwise! Grapes, apple slices, nuts or trail mix, and pretzel crisps (my favorite) are all great options for on the road treats. 

5. A GPS. If you're as directionally challenged as me, this is an absolute must. (I definitely have to turn the volume off though, I can't handle that woman barking orders at me all day!) Luckily my car has a built-in GPS but a Garmin is a great option too!

6. A car charger for your phone! UGH I wish I had this last weekend. My ipod wasn't working and my phone couldn't survive the 9 hour drive from Michigan while I was using it for music. The last hour of that car ride was uncomfortably silent...

What are your absolute essentials for road trips?



Playlist: Road Trip

So since I just did a post about road trips and I feel like I have spent more time in the car lately than on solid ground, I thought a road trip playlist was only fitting! Trust me...a 9 hour drive by yourself will have you seriously wishing you had some better playlists set up while you travel. These songs are a tad all over the board, but they are all fun songs to either sing to, dance to, or just sit back and cruise to - all essentials for a solid road trip playlist, whether you're by yourself or with a group of friends!

Happy Listening and Safe Travels!


Road Trip

When you're in college, road tripping is like a rite of passage. Summer adventures with friends to music festivals, or to visit friends in their hometowns, or even a little beach reunion with your closest sorority sisters - the travel never stops! This summer has been no exception for me; I have planned trips for literally every single weekend this entire summer leading up until I go back to school. I guess I have been a little bit college-sick (Is that a real thing?) As much as I love Louisville it just doesn't give me the energy that being at school does, surrounded by constant events and people.

Seriously though, now that I am a junior I find myself constantly missing my friends from school (not that I don't absolutely love my friends at home, they're the best!) I just can't help but feel like there are such better ways to spend the summer than sitting on a couch in Louisville watching TV like I'm in high school again.

Maybe I'm just starting to outgrow my hometown a little bit - I constantly feel a pull to go to bigger cities like Chicago and New York just to experience something new and a little bit more exciting. So far this summer I have gone to the lake several times and I just finished an amazing visit with my little, Courtney, in Detroit and a family vacation in Traverse City, Michigan! Currently I am packing for my upcoming trip this weekend to Chicago to visit some friends who just graduated, another trip back to Oxford, and hopefully I will squeeze another trip or two to the lake again before I head back to school for good.

Or maybe its just envy of my many many jet-setting European adventurer friends who are all busy living it up on their study abroad trips (something I had the fortune of experiencing last summer). Regardless, I have definitely developed a serious obsession with summer travel and road tripping. What better way to spend time with your friends than in a car with the sunroof open, the summer sun beating down on you and some good music to pass the time? Sometimes getting there is just as exhilarating as the destination.

"Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer"

PS Be on the lookout for a great summer road trip playlist and a guide to packing your car for the perfect road trip!


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Sorry it has taken me a little while to get around to this, I'm still learning about running a blog!


Sugar Paper

I found the cutest website for stationary and other paper needs today! Its called Sugar Paper and I am seriously in love - I definitely know where I am getting all of my stationary and notebooks before I go back to school in August.

They have everything - note sets, notebooks, place cards, coasters, calendars, cards for special occasions, gift tags...The organizational side in me could stay and shop on their site forever! They even have wrapping paper! There are so many great things it was hard to choose just a few favorites to show you, but I definitely recommend checking their site out! The prices are pretty reasonable, especially for such a cute product.

There's just something wonderful about really elegant stationary, don't you think?


Set Sail

To celebrate the summer season, this post is about all things nautical! I went sailing today with my dad and couldn't help but be reminded of how many adorable nautical apparel and accessories have been popping up everywhere this summer! There are so many cute collections, I don't even know where to begin.

C. Wonder has an impressively large collection of nautical jewelry this summer featuring my personal favorite symbol, the starfish! (I have a pave starfish pendant necklace from J.Crew from a few years ago that I wear year-round - I'm actually wearing it right now!) They also have some other great nautical symbols featured in classic gold that would be perfect to pull together a cute summer outfit for any occasion! Seriously, there are so many I had a hard time choosing which ones to show but you can see all of the nautical jewelry featured on their site here!

Who could do nautical better than Vineyard Vines? I wasn't even sure where to begin with their vast variety of sea-themed products ranging from purses to jewelry to clothing. (I know I was certainly sporting my Navy Phi Mu Shep Shirt today out on the sailboat!)

PS how perfectly do those lobster flip flops go with the lobster shorts from Krass and Co?!

You can always count on Lilly Pulitzer to deliver their resort and summer collections with a nod to nautical style. Featuring three brand new patterns, 'Get Nauti', 'Booze Cruise', and 'Anchors Away', along with some other classic prints featured earlier on in the season, you can always find something appropriate for the sea.

And of course I can't help but give a shout out to the perfectly preppy nautical designs from Krass & Co! Their classy athletic apparel features the classic signature symbols of any good nautical collection, including lobsters, sailboats, seahorses, and seashells in a variety of bright and fun colors. What's not to love about the way this company takes comfort and adds just a pinch of prep to make their clothes appropriate for any activity.

"The cure for anything is salt water. Sweat, tears, or the ocean."


Essentials of the Week(s)

Anyone who knows me at all will tell you that I have one of the most addictive personalities of anyone you will ever meet...no seriously. Its almost dangerously addictive, to even the smallest or simplest of things. The strangest part of it is, I always have exactly a two week attention span with anything I become addicted to or obsessed with. The minute two weeks is up, I'm so sick of whatever it is that I don't want anything to do with it again for a long time.

This happens with literally anything - food, drinks, a game on my phone, a certain song, an outfit...Anything that survives more than two weeks of my addictive attention span is seriously impressive. For example, when I discovered dark chocolate-covered pretzel crisps this summer (oh. my. god). I felt like I had died and gone to heaven. Every single day at work I couldn't wait to get home and devour another serving of them, and every night before bed I always snuck a couple more. But after exactly two weeks - BOOM - bored of these and not all that interested anymore.

No matter when it is, I always have a constant selection of anywhere from 2-10 things that I am absolutely addicted to! (Of course some things really do last more than two weeks - the stronger the addiction to it the shorter it lasts because I tend to get pretty burnt out).

So these are just a few of the things that I am in love with at the moment! Basically things that are essential to my life every single day or I feel out of place and out of sorts - at least for the next two weeks!

1. My New Lilly Pulitzer Planner! I pre-ordered this almost as soon as they came out and its finally here! I love the new print, although I still find it so unnecessary that they insist on making these planners 16 months long. It really messes with my OCD...Does anyone else think this is strange? I've only had it for two days and I've already filled it up with everything I can think of. 

2. Vanilla-Lavender Candle from Bath & Body Works. Naturally I love this candle, it combines my two favorite scents in such a calming way - It drives me crazy when candles are too overpowering but this one is perfect! I light it every night when I'm trying to unwind from a long day. I've already almost used mine up!

3. My Kindle Fire (and its new adorable Kate Spade Case!!) I've been taking a lot of trips lately, so I've been doing a lot more reading than usual with the extra free time. One of my favorite things to do when I come up north to Michigan is sit on the back porch and read while I watch the water. SO peaceful.

4. Tazo Refresh-Mint Tea. I have been fairly obsessed with Tazo Passion tea for a while, but the other day at a restaurant with my friends I branched out and tried this new flavor and now I am totally in love with it. The mint is so refreshing and energizing (It's really hard for me to find a tea that gives me energy since I don't drink caffeine - I know, I'm crazy!) I definitely recommend this flavor. 

5. Eos Lip Balm in Sweet Mint. I guess there is a theme with the mint products right now but I can't get enough of this stuff. I'll admit, I initially bought it because I thought the shape was so interesting (totally judged a book by its cover, in a good way!) but I ended up loving it! The mint leaves your lips feeling tingly and I don't feel like I'm putting on some little-kid fruity-flavored chapstick. Definitely a must-have right now!

What are your essentials to get you through the day?



Sparkle, Sizzle & Pop

Whether you're relaxing at home with family, partying it up with friends, or traveling somewhere new and exciting, 4th of July is one of the best reasons to celebrate. What's not to love about red, white & blue, vibrant fireworks lighting up the sky, sparklers and fun festive parties?!

Being that I love all thinks sparkly, this holiday is definitely one of my all-time favorites. I love all of the barbecues, bonfires, dinner parties and cocktail hours that accompany this holiday - but most of all I love the festive outfits! It seems like the only holiday where its truly socially acceptable to dress for the occasion (unless you count ugly Christmas sweaters in December, which, I don't).

It seems like my email has been overflowing with sales and promotions for various 4th of July related apparel, all busting with the signature red, white and blue combinations of accessories and outfits perfect for the sunny July weather. This constant bombardment of notifications flooding my inbox has inspired me to compile some perfectly preppy and festive outfits to suit your holiday, no matter how you're spending it!

Take a look!

How are you spending your holiday?

Happy 4th of July!



Chino Craziness

I think my new obsession with J.Crew 3" Chino Shorts has reached an all-time high. While packing for my trip to Michigan yesterday I realized that I own them in - count them - 9 colors! (And they just released an amazing olive color that I have a feeling will be joining my collection very soon...) What can I say? I'm very picky, and once I find a pair that I love I buy them in every single color!

They're just so comfortable and cute. When you're as tall as me it's nearly impossible to find a pair of shorts that are long enough without making me look like a soccer mom. I love all of the staple J. Crew colors that these shorts are offered in (naturally to match my absurd amount of J.Crew Vintage Cotton V-Neck Tees...)

I've recently started expanding my belt collection too, and they pull the outfit together so perfectly! Then all you need to add is a few key jewelry items and you're all set! This is pretty much my daily outfit for summer and class every day in the fall. It's so simple, casual and cute! You don't have to wear something over the top or wildly expensive and extravagant to look put together.

(I only wish my collection was as impressive as in this picture, although I don't think that's too far off in the future at the rate I'm going!)

I think my favorite feature of the shorts is the adorable pinstripe pattern on the inside of the waistband! (I know you can't see it when you're wearing them but I still think it is such a charming little detail).

What are your go-to summer shorts?



Chase After Your Dreams

I'm not sure what it is, but lately I have been more inspired and ambitious than ever. Its like the world just opened up to me for the first time, and I am suddenly seeing opportunity every direction I look. I'm starting to realize dreams I never knew I had before, and I'm beyond motivated to pursue all of them!

Although sometimes I feel like there's not enough time in the day, lately I feel as if time can't move quickly enough. All I want to do is explore more opportunities, have new adventures, and discover more dreams that lie waiting for me.

As cliché as it sounds, I can't think of another way to describe the way I have been feeling lately other than saying that just when things seemed their absolute darkest, it was like I found myself all over again. I have never felt more like myself, more free, more inspired, or more driven and excited about the future and what is in store for me.

I can't take all of the credit for this newfound motivation, however. One of my close friends, Dakota Isaacs, has had a tremendous amount of success in her life lately and I couldn't help but be a little envious! She chased her dreams and went after the things she wanted and pulled it off! She has landed two incredible fashion PR internships in New York City this summer, and in the fall she is jetting off to Barcelona for the semester! (What a life, right?)

Hearing all about how she went after what she wanted without hesitation made me realize that is exactly the type of person I have always prided myself upon being, and I'm ashamed to admit I had been slipping on it for a long time.

I feel like I have finally taken charge of my life for the first time in (*gulp*) over a year, but let me tell you - nothing has ever felt better. Already things have begun to fall into place for me like this blog, becoming a brand representative for Krass & Co, getting a bonus at my summer internship, cleaning out my closet for the first time in my life, and planning another trip abroad for my fall senior semester! (Australia, Italy or Barcelona - any thoughts?!)

It really does just go to show you that, especially when you're in your 20s, the world is truly at your fingertips. There are no limits to what you can do, you just have to put yourself out there and trust that life has a funny little way of working itself out.

Re-examine your life as it is right now - how many of your dreams are you actually pursuing? 

"The only failure in your 20s is inaction. Everything else is trial and error."
                                       -Danny Rubin