Wednesday, June 29, 2016

June Budget

Oh Nordstrom, how I love thee.  I hit the semi-annual sale up pretty hard at the very beginning of the month, but got some great deals (and they price adjusted two things, saving me a ton more money!!).  Everything I picked up has been in heavy rotation since they arrived, and I'm anticipating living in all 3 of the Halogen tanks for the summer.  I also had an unexpected windfall this month, and ended up ordering a few splurge pieces that I'd been lusting after for ages.  They are all a above what I would typically pay for that type of item, but am thrilled with the quality - you definitely get what you pay for! Not going to lie, I sometimes just wear the dress around the house - I feel gorgeous in it!

Halogen Olson Flats // $45
Halogen Scalloped Tank // $40
Bobeau Cardigan // $40
Halogen Tanks // $10 each

Total // $145
Quarterly Budget // $500 - $135 - $148 - $145 = $72 left over!

Eliza J Dress // $82
Barbour Beadnell // $298
Madewell High Riser // $128

Size Notes // Everything Halogen fits TTS and is super high quality for the price.  I went a size up in the Eliza J dress, to accommodate my chest, which ended up being a good move. I had to do some pin finagling to get the top to not gap, but it fits beautifully. Also sized up on the Barbour and can now wear allllllllll the sweaters under it.

Linking up with Fran

Monday, June 27, 2016

Trader Joe's Top 9

For most of my life, Trader Joe's was an exotic, destination grocery store.  The closest one was 45+ minutes away, and nobody had time for that.  A few years ago, though, one opened just a couple of miles from my parents house, and all of our lives were changed.  Which isn't hyperbole, this grocery store was life changing. I've tried a borderline ridiculous number of their products. Most are good, some are better than good. Below are my favorites!

Coffee Concentrate // I go through about 1 of these a week.  Iced coffee with no extra fuss. I dump one of these jugs into a pitcher, then fill the jar up with water and add that, then milk as I'm serving.  It lasts a full week and it's goooooooood.

Raisin Rosemary Crisps // Honestly, I never expected triscuits to get bumped as my favorite cracker, but these babies are awesome.  I highly recommend pairing them with all varieties of cheese, but goat and blue are my favorite.

Coffee Latte and Cream Bars // The first time I bought these, I ate the entire box in 2 nights. I basically inhaled them and have never been happier. They are bomb.  They taste like a really good cup of coffee, aren't too sweet and don't have horrifying nutritional facts.

Just a Handful Tempting Trail Mix // Like every other patriotic American, I find portioning out trail mix nearly impossible. I love that these little bags are the perfect mix of sweet and salty, without going overboard in calories etc.

Frozen Cherries // Dessert, every single day. I don't know what's different about TJ's cherries, but they are WAY better than other frozen cherries.  I eat them by the bagful, typically solo, but if I'm feeling decadent, I drizzle them with chocolate sauce because #treatyoself

Broccoli and Kale Slaw Salad // The salad that changed my opinion about salad. I love the mix of crunchy and soft, sweet and bitter.  It's an awesome mix and way more satisfying than eating a bowl of leaves.

Soyaki // Perfect on veggies, tofu, rice, pasta, all of the things.  It's one of two condiments I refuse to be without and find that this is, more often than not, the thing that makes my meals delicious, rather than ordinary.

Popcorn in a Pickle // Here's the deal. I hate pickles. I think they are gross. But I eat this popcorn with the kind of reckless abandon typically associated with the gold rush or Walmart on Black Friday. This shit is delicious and I could and would hurt people for it.

Flowers // Like every other girl in America, the Trader Joe's peonies and 5 dollar tulips make me go a little cray cray. They are damn good, last forever and always look beautiful.

Honorable/Holiday Mentions // Both the Candy Cane Joe Joe's and Peppermint Green Tea are huge favorites of mine, though only available in the winter. I stock up on both when they're around and typically my stockpile lasts about 2 weeks because I have no self control

Monday, June 13, 2016

Naturalish Skincare Routine

About 3 months ago, I made the pseudo-mistake of downloading Think Dirty, an app that rates products (beauty and home) for toxicity.  I pretty much immediately threw away a couple of things (stuff that had ingredients linked to hormonal disruptions) and have been slowly transitioning most of my products over as they've run out.  The only exemptions are the Sunday Riley products. As it turns out, most of the retinol/acid products aren't natural, and my skin becomes very unhappy without them, so I'm sticking with an 80/20 split on products. Close enough.

acure organics, natural beauty, rose water, sunday riley, sunday riley routine

In the morning, I wash my face with the Acure facial cleansing cream, which smells minty and makes me feel marginally more awake.  I use rose water as a toner, though I am definitely not sure it does anything except make my face smell like a garden. Whatever.  Next up is Good Genes, which I am genuinely made works as well as it does. It's so expensive, but I noticed a change almost immediately.

acure organics, natural beauty, rose water, sunday riley, sunday riley routine

One of my favorite parts of my day is definitely taking my makeup off. I use the Shea Moisture Rose Cleansing Oil on dry skin, then wipe it off with a flannel soaked in hot water.  Then, I use the Pixi Glow Tonic, followed by the Luna oil, which is also frustratingly beneficial.  I don't always use the Vitamin C serum, but I do really like it.  I follow it up with the Acure night cream and get some beauty rest!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Summer Goals

As of Saturday at 5:13 pm, it is summer break.  My students are gone, dorm is empty and I'm back to working a regular, boring 40 hour-a-week job.  I've been cycling through elation and boredom since then, but am very much looking forward to settling into a new routine. This summer involves a lot of travel, but also some pretty good downtime, so I'm setting some goals so that the time feels relaxed, but productive.

1 // Solo vacation

As I mentioned, this summer involves a fair amount of travel, most of which involves friends and/or family. While I'm thrilled to spend time with them and get to visit some of my favorite places (London!), I realized I haven't done a solo trip since I got back from Copenhagen 3 years ago.  Traveling solo is hard for me, mostly just because of my social anxiety (ie eating alone in restaurants), which is exactly why I need to do it.

2 // Make a fancy recipe

Most of the recipes I make are as quick and simple as possible, which is perfect during the school year, but I'd really like to spend some time choosing, shopping for and making a meal that's frivolously delicious.

3 // Complete BBG

Last winter, I got about halfway, then fell off the bandwagon.  I love that BBG is three times a week for only 30 minutes, so I'm re-committing and hoping to pull it off!

4 // Climb a mountain

101 in 1001 goal that really needs to happen. One of these not-so-hot days, Lula and I will be summiting something.

5 // Read 20 books

I am sort of ashamed of how little I've read in the last 6 weeks, and really need to get back to it. I'm hoping earlier bedtimes and a little less going on will get me back on track.