Thursday, June 6, 2019

June Small Goals

Happy June friends! I feel like I come alive in the summer. The sun doesn't set until almost 9pm and it just feels like there's so much more time to do things. I already feel like all my weekends (especially the ones with the girls) have filled up for the summer and I'm honestly really excited about it. I'm feeling this renewed sense of purpose lately and I'm just really looking forward to all the fun summer things I've got planned. Let's tackle some small goals to make those bigger goals a little more possible! 

Jen's May Small Goals
1.  Finish painting downstairs bathroom.  Finished!!! I haven't had the time or energy to think about decorating it but it's doneeeeee.
2.  No Outfit Repeats.   Yes! This was actually way easier than expected. I know I have a lot of clothes but it is so easy to get stuck in outfit ruts.
3. Selfish Sewing.  I didn't make myself anything, but I did start working on making new covering for the kitty's window shelves.  Their current covers are so faded you can't even tell what the print was. 
4.  Buy a Fern.  Nope, even though this was such an easy goal to accomplish.
5.  Buy a new shower curtain. Thank you, Amazon prime.

4/5 is pretty ok with me.

June Small Goals 
1.  Finish painting the kitchen.  I recently started working in my kitchen. I've removed some paneling and part of the wallpaper border.  Since it is such a high traffic room, I've been trying to do it in stages so that everyone isn't inconvenienced too much.  One side of the room is complete!
2.  Keep a Fashion Diary.  This is something I've done on and off but I really want to stick with it. I'm going to post my outfit every day on Instagram.  I think that will help keep me accountable.
3.  Spend time outdoors.  I can be so project focused sometimes that I'm not taking enough time to relax and enjoy the warm weather.  I will spend more time outside this month, even if I'm just sitting on my porch reading.
4.  Buy new living room curtains.  Since I updated my living room last summer, I've been wanting to upgrade my curtains.  This is the month, folks.
5. Buy a new swimsuit. This goal will hopefully help push goal #3 even further, plus I haven't had a new suit in like 5 years so it's time.

Heather's May Small Goals 
1. Bring my lunch 3 times a week I don't think this was accomplished but I also didn't really keep track. 
2. Read 5 books I read exactly 5 books in May. I still feel like I'm in a slump, but honestly two of the books were 500+ pages so maybe it's not that bad. 
3. Book AirBnB for Colorado trip Done! I was getting a little nervous we wouldn't find somewhere affordable and nice for 8 people, but I did it. It's got mountain views and a hot tub on the porch. I'm so ready for this trip! 
4. Start a new crafty project Complete fail. I didn't start anything creative in May. I need to make time for this in June. I'm feeling really uninspired lately. 
5. Buy some patio furniture Done! I got some cute furniture from Aldi's of all places and spent $40. I'll have to share photos soon! 

3/5 goals complete in May 

June Small Goals 
1.  Read 10 books I have so many library books on my cart right now (like 18 of them!) so I'm doubling my May goal to make some serious reading progress. 
2. Take myself on a date I want to go do something alone (honestly probably dinner and a movie). I don't do enough things like this so I want to give it a shot. 
3. Donate stuff from extra room I've been adding things to donate in a pile in my extra room. It's finally big enough that I think it's time to drop it off at Goodwill. 
4. Buy a diffuser for essential oils I've been wanting to try diffusing essential oils, specifically lavender oil at night when I'm falling asleep. Now just to get a diffuser. 
5. Find all my debt Something I talked about in therapy recently is not being clear on exactly how much debt I might have. I used to deal with money stuff by just ignoring it all and hoping it would go away. This has not worked out for me as a long term strategy I don't want to feel anxious about it any longer, so I'm hoping to just find out what debt I might have. No plans for it yet, just getting the information together. 

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

The Summer of Trying New Things

I think by now it's very clear that I love a good to do list. I make work to do lists each week, weekend to do lists, I've got my 101 in 1,001 list, plus every month we do small goals. So yeah, I love a good list. Recently I've been working with a life coach (Hi Molly!!! Check her out here!) and we have been diving into a lot of stuff that kind of overlaps with the work I do in therapy, but a little more focused on actions. I started thinking of ways I could take some meaningful action to bring new things into my life. I feel like there is a lot of stuff I want to try, especially related to self care, but I feel overwhelmed on where to start and how to keep going.

I've felt like the past year has been incredible for my mental health & growth. Therapy is the hands down best thing I've ever done for my self care. I've been able to work through a lot of childhood traumas & also understand how those experiences shaped the way I show up in my life. My anxiety and depression are much better (not gone, but definitely more manageable) & I feel like I show up in my relationships, work, & friendships in ways I never would have done in the past. The only thing I feel like was missing was actionable items from these internal changes. This is where Molly comes in! She's been the second best thing I've done for my self care. I cried so much on our first call together, but she creates such a safe space of caring and acceptance. She genuinely cares about me & helping me turn my goals into small, actionable steps.

The Summer of Trying New Things was born out of this need to try forming new habits based on the growth I've experienced from therapy. It goes from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend (and possibly longer if I end up liking it). I made a list of about 30 things that I have always wanted to try and the plan is to pick one thing (via random number generator) each week on Sunday to try for one week. Usually the thing that trips me up when trying to form new habits is feeling like if I slip up, I've failed completely so I quit. To me, one week feels like a long enough time to see if I actually like something, but also short enough that I don't think I'll have a problem sticking with it through the entire week. At the end of each week, I'll decide if this is something I want to keep doing. I'm hoping to keep track of my progress on Instagram stories and here on the blog!

So what's on my list? 

  1. Meditation 
  2. Yoga
  3. Take Jake on a walk every morning before work 
  4. Wake up at 6am 
  5. Bedtime at 10pm
  6. Listen to DRE twice a day 
  7. Gratitude journal 
  8. Lemon water before coffee
  9. Essential Oils 
  10. Walk/run every day for 30 minutes 
  11. Brain dump journaling 
  12. Self reflection journaling 
  13. Make plans with friends (once a week for a month?) 
  14. Spend zero dollars for one week 
  15. Read for one hour 
  16. No screen time 
  17. No social media apps 
  18. Work on something creative every night
  19. Create a morning routine 
  20. Create a bedtime routine 
  21. Plan meals for the week 
  22. Do whatever the girls want to do together each night 
  23. Tarot card pulls every morning (to learn more about the cards & reflect) 
  24. Eat breakfast 
  25. Drink 90oz water every day 
  26. No dairy for one week 
  27. No alcohol (this one might not be good for only a week challenge?) 
  28. Development podcasts only on my commute 
  29. Audiobooks instead of podcasts for one week 
Molly was incredibly helpful in listening to my list & helping me figure out if there was anything I wanted to prioritize. We decided a good way to kick this off would be to start with gratitude journaling. I downloaded the 5 Minute Journal app at Molly's suggestion and I really love it so far! Obviously, you can also do this with good old pen & paper, but I'm enjoying my experience with the app. We also decided to try the morning routine at the end of July/beginning of August, since a lot of the things on my list could fit well into a morning routine once I know if I like them or not. I seriously love my experience with Molly and coaching so far. It's been the perfect tie in with my therapy practice and a good way to show up for myself. I'm also really excited to get started on my Summer of Trying New Things! I feel really excited and motivated in a way I haven't in a long time.

I'll be posting updates here monthly and on Instagram weekly. I'd love for anyone to join in with their own lists (or even borrow mine!). I'm excited to see what habits I've formed by the end of summer. 

Monday, June 3, 2019

June Book Club

Happy June book babies! I cannot believe summer is already here, but honestly I'm so ready for it. I come alive in the summer; Everything feels slow and possible. I feel like I'm shedding my winter skin and ready to have fun, tackle my goals, & read all day long. This month Jen picked our book club selection With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo. I had never heard of this book, but I'm excited to dive in! 

What's it about?

Ever since she got pregnant freshman year, Emoni Santiago’s life has been about making the tough decisions—doing what has to be done for her daughter and her abuela. The one place she can let all that go is in the kitchen, where she adds a little something magical to everything she cooks, turning her food into straight-up goodness.

Even though she dreams of working as a chef after she graduates, Emoni knows that it’s not worth her time to pursue the impossible. Yet despite the rules she thinks she has to play by, once Emoni starts cooking, her only choice is to let her talent break free.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Quality Over Quantity

Hey friends! We are back with another outfit posts as promised! Today, I want to discuss quality over quantity. I've always fallen more in the quantity category. Always adhering to the mindset of loving something and thinking I need it in every single color.  The notion of needing more, more, more; no amount is ever enough.  This is something I want to change.

Before, acquiring more clothes felt like a compulsion.  Like, I couldn't live my life unless I had all these things.  In a strange turn of events, this put a huge damper on outfit planning and getting ready each day. It was sensory overload. I'm also a little on the indecisive side and there were just too many options for me to be able to make snap outfit decisions each morning.  I also thought more options were better, but friends that is just not true.  For me, at least. 

I recently donated approximately 15 bags of clothing, shoes and accessories to goodwill. I got rid of so many things but I still own so much. I'm still overwhelmed, but not as intensely. I honestly should purge a few more things, especially some dresses, but I'm on the right track. I'm already feeling less stressed each morning and I'm starting to enjoy shopping in my own closet again. 

Another thing I have noticed is as much as I love following trends, I really hate trends. They are so fleeting, here for a season or two and then gone. It hit me the other day that I was feeling pressure as a "fashion blogger" to keep up with different trends and to buy outfits just to display on our blog even if they weren't conducive to my every day life.  It hit me how wasteful I was being.  There are so many times I will grab a vintage piece over a new trendy piece. Sometimes I'm in the mood to be a chameleon but usually I'm more into mixing trendy pieces with vintage flair. I'm trying to figure out a way to balance vintage pieces and trendy pieces. 

For now, I'm limiting my shopping. I'm avoiding most stores with the exception of thrift stores which I'm still heavily limiting. I'm even avoiding online window shopping.  I'm mixing and matching again. I'm rewearing outfits again. I'm enjoying fashion again.  

Outfit details:
Top {Goodwill Outlet} / Mom Jeans {American Eagle} / Kicks {Converse}

Jen and I are on a similar wavelength when it comes to quality over quantity. It's definitely something I've been thinking about a lot in 2019. My experience is a little different, more focused on wearing things that I feel good in because they actually fit me. 

I've went through my clothes so many times and felt like everything I owned, I loved. The only issue was most of it didn't fit me any more. I've gained weight over the past year & was stuck wearing the same few things over and over because it was so stressful to go in my closet and try on multiple outfits that didn't fit me anymore. I finally got fed up and a few weeks ago tried on literally every single item of clothing I owned. Anything that didn't fit got packed away. I set a calendar reminder for September and anything that still doesn't fit gets donated, no matter how much I love it.

 I'm really trying to lean in to loving my body how it is, removing the focus from losing weight to taking care of myself with no pressure. It's been a game changer mentally & I didn't realize how much those too small clothes were affecting my headspace. I've brought in a such a small amount of things to my closet since then, I've started measuring myself to make sure I buy the right size & am not feeling that urge to buy everything I see. 

Outfit Details 

Shirt {Etsy} / Jacket {Target} / Jumpsuit {I don't remember, I bought it because I saw someone wearing it in their Insta stories. Sorry!} 

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

May Small Goals

For the past few years, Spring has been pretty much skipped here in Missouri. We will have a week of nice weather then it's all humidity all the time. I have been pleasantly surprised by how long Spring has stuck around this year. I've gotten to leave my windows open and wear light jackets and enjoy a few spring storms. I'm trying to be better about enjoying each day a little more for what it is, not wishing for time to move faster (or slower). Gratitude is hard sometimes, but I'm working on it. Now let's kick off May with some small goals that I can accomplish with my windows open and that sweet spring breeze. 

Jen's April Small Goals
1.  Stain quilt display shelf. Didn't get this done. I did buy supplies so hopefully I can knock it out in May.
2.  Take 2 Morning Walks per week.  Nope. Didn't happen even once.
3.  Paint the vanity in the downstairs bathroom.  I decided to paint the vanity navy blue on a whim, after having a different color picked out. I'm really glad I went this way because it really pops.  Just need to finish up painting the trims and doors white.
4.  Clean out cabinets above fridge.  I did this! I need to still donate everything, but the cabinets are pretty much empty.  Just need to figure out what I want to use them for now since they are such awkward cabinets.
5.  Finish painting the stairs.  Yes! I finished this project and I'm in love with my stairs. These little transformations are making me so happy!

3/5 - I'll take it. I was pretty sick the last week of the month and that sucked up so much of my energy.

May Small Goals

1.  Finish painting downstairs bathroom.  It's close guys, just doors and trim!
2.  No Outfit Repeats.  I'm going to try to make the most out of my current wardrobe this month and do a no outfit repeats challenge. 
3. Selfish Sewing.  I've been spending a lot of time sewing for others lately. I'm going to spend one day or afternoon working on a personal sewing project.  Nothing planned, just whatever strikes my fancy.
4.  Buy a Fern.  For some reason, I've become obsessed with the idea of having a big leafy fern on my front porch. The porch is ready for spring/summer with my patio set and various gnome decorations. I think a fern would just complete the look.
5.  Buy a new shower curtain.  Now that the bathroom is almost finished, I'm ready to start looking at a few things to decorate it with. First on my list is a shower curtain. I keep joking about making the bathroom HP themed and I think I found a shower curtain that will have a subtle nod to the forbidden forest without being OVERLY HP.  Apparently my husband is not as obsessed as I am?

Heather's April Small Goals
1. Start Couch to 5K I started and am only a few days in but I am feeling good about getting back into it. 
2. Buy a book cart Done! I bought it on April 30th, but I did it. Just in time too since I also picked up like 10 library books on the same day. 
3. Meal plan for dinners I did not get this one done, but I still want to try and fit it in at some point. 
4. Sew a robe Nope. I got confused by the pattern and just didn't start on it. I still want to do this though. 
5. Spending Freeze Besides the book cart, I did a good job on my spending freeze this month. 

3/5 goals completed

May Small Goals 
1. Bring my lunch 3 times a week I've been either eating out or not eating lunch and I need to get better about planning. I want to bring my lunch at least 3 times a week this month. 
2. Read 5 books I feel like I've been in a reading slump. I want to read at least 5 books in May. 
3. Book AirBnB for Colorado trip We are going on a family vacation to Colorado this summer with my sisters and I want to make sure we book the AirBnB this month since we need a place to sleep 7 people. 
4. Start a new crafty project I haven't been doing anything crafty lately. I want to at least start on something, probably knitting or crocheting something. 
5. Buy some patio furniture I love sitting outside on my porch, but we have been using weird folding chairs (until they broke) and now an old computer chair so it's time to invest in some actual outdoor furniture. I don't need anything fancy or expensive, just two chairs and a small table, which I think I've already found. I just need to go buy them! 

May Book Club

Hey book lovers! It's May which means time is ripe for some outside reading time. I'm looking forward to getting some outdoor furniture for my porch so I can sit outside and read in the spring breeze before the humidity shows up. This month I suggested we read The Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. I had gotten it from the library and wanted to prioritize reading it, plus it's gotten so much hype that I knew I wanted to find out what it's all about. I'm excited to get started, especially because it's long & I've got a few days off for a staycation this month.

What's it about? 

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

Friday, April 19, 2019

GROUNDBREAKING: Florals for Spring

Friends!! Winter is finally over (or is winter coming?)(V timely Game of Thrones reference).  This is our first outfit post in close to a year.  Winter was brutal and we just couldn't talk each other into freezing nor is it easy to feel stylish when its that cold.  Anyway, fashion is such a big part of our lives and we are so happy to make this a regular thing again.  

Heather suggested we do some floral outfits to kick off the spring and our return to the fashion blogging world.  It felt so good getting back into the swing of things, giggling, twirling and collaborating on outfit ideas that we are determined to make this a regular thing again.  

Heather and I have both been rather strict with our funds this year.  We both have serious goals of tackling debt and planning for the future which feels really good.  This means less shopping in stores and more shopping in our closets.  I feel like I'm embracing this in a way I never have before.  When you are constantly bringing in new pieces, it feels hard to mesh your wardrobe together. You get excited to wear the new piece, but its hard to realize all the potential outfits because you have so many pieces. This top for example, I've worn it a few times but only with mom jeans. It was hard for me to see the potential of the other outfits it could help create. Now as I'm looking at this outfit, I could picture the shirt with some black skinny jeans and a denim vest.  

I think I was just overwhelmed and that dampened by creativity in this outlet of my life.  In the past couple of months, I've donated approximately 15 garbage sized bags to Goodwill and I still have so many things. There still isn't much wiggle room anywhere though. I do have things organized better and everything now has its spot; but there isn't much room for new things.  My mom always said you should get rid of something old when you bring something new in and damnit, I think she might be right. 

I feel like I'm way more apt to mix and match now which is helping create some super cute outfits and I'm feeling less bored with my wardrobe overall.  Sure, there are still times when I think "Ohhhh if I only had this top or those shoes, this outfit would be perfect" but would it? Honestly, IDK but I'm feeling a lot more saner have less to choose from. 

I honestly feel like it might be a precursor to start a "only buy used clothes for 6 months or however long" challenge.  I'm so intrigued when other people do this challenge. I think it is definitely something I'm going to try in the future since I thrift pretty often anyway and I reallllly enjoy rocking a vintage piece. 

Outfit Details

Bodysuit {Forever 21} / Pants {Forever 21} / Sandals {American Eagle}
All from last season.

Jen and I always seem to be on similar wavelengths and this is no exception. I've donated my heart out over the past year, but still my closet seemed to be filled to the brim. Not only was it overflowing, but I also was basically wearing the exact same like 10 things. There was no creativity and getting dressed didn't bring me joy like it used to, which was a real bummer. 

I've gained about 15-20 pounds over the past year and part of my lack of clothing creativity was things didn't fit anymore. So last Friday I decided I was done. I took literally every single piece of clothing I owned and piled it on my bed, Marie Kondo style. Then I tried each thing on. If it didn't fit, it went in a pile to the side to be packed away. I'm giving it until August 1st and if it still doesn't fit at that point, it's being donated. I'm not actively trying to lose weight, but I do love all the items I'm keeping so I want to make sure they need to be gone for good before I donate them. I struggle with binge eating and healing my eating habits could mean I lose weight, but it also could mean I don't. And I'm fine either way. 

This process means my closet holds about 1/3 of what it did before, but now I know every single thing fits me and I feel good in it. It's incredibly freeing. I had no idea the weight those clothes in my closet had on my mental health. I'm working hard to stop attaching my worth to how much I weigh and what I look like at any size. My body is my body and it does not determine how worthy of love, success, and affection I am. Easier said than done, but clearing out the physical reminders that I'm not a certain size has helped make that head space easier to occupy. 

I'm incredibly thankful for Jen and her support. She's always there to remind me I'm cute and valuable just as I am. She also took these photos of me which reminded me how much I love clothes and looking cute. I've been living in leggings, but probably more accurately, I've been hiding in leggings. I'm excited to get dressed again and cannot wait to be creative with my best friend to take outfit photos I feel good in. 

Outfit Details