Stephanie and I had a blast exploring Disney and Universal last week! I feel lucky to have such an amazing blogger friend and I am looking forward to our next adventure! Check out instagram for more photos.
Orange is the New Black
By now everyone has binge watched Netflix’s amazing hit, Orange Is The New Black and if you are like me, you have developed a huge girl crush on Alex Vause. However, not many people have read the novel by the same name that the show is loosely based off of. I will admit that the novel is not quite as drama filled as the show, which comes as no surprise since Jenji Kojin (the creator) is responsible for the drama filled hit, Weeds. The novel, however, is a real and honest look into life for a woman in an American prison. I think that everyone in prison-obsessed America should read it, especially any woman who has ever made a mistake (so basically all women except Tina Fey, who is indeed perfect).
Pumpkin carving has reached all new levels of amazing over the past few years. Two years ago, John and I purchased an elaborate pumpkin carving kit and actually impressed our friends and family with our sinister faced jack-o’-lantern. Since then, we have decided to pick a fun and challenging pumpkin design every year. In the next two weeks we will share this year’s choice with you!
Cheese and I are seeing each other again…and things are good. I’m still eating a mostly vegan diet but I am having one dairy cheat a week (which is usually cheese or something that already has milk or eggs in it since I never have them on their own).
Laugh Filled Dinners at Home With Friends
Cooking up new recipes at home with John for our friends to enjoy is always fun. Now that fall is here, we are finding so many new ways to prepare old favorites and we are having a blast doing it. We also have the kind of friends who you can laugh the night away with which helps burn off some of those delicious calories.
Stephanie and Me at Walt Disney World
Many people in fast paced, creative industries make friends who don’t live nearby. Also, with ever changing job markets, many people find themselves moving away from close friends at various times of their lives. Luckily, we live in a time when it is a lot easier to stay in contact with friends, regardless of where they live. Not only do I have good friends on both of America’s coasts, I also have good friends in England and Australia. Below are some of the ways that we keep in touch.
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like the surprise of receiving a letter or a card in his or her mailbox. Since so many of my friends live out of the area (and I am completely obsessed with stationary), I collect cards to send to them on random days. I think it is important to remember birthday cards, thank you cards, congratulations cards, and all the other card “themes” but I think it is equally as important to sometimes send a card to just say hello. It’s a perfect way to let your friend know that even though you live miles and miles apart, her friendship still means a lot to you.
I am a huge fan of Face Time and I use it often to connect with friends and family. I especially love it during the holidays. We can’t all be in the same place at the same time but we can definitely use the computer to make it feel as if we are. I also love Face Time for long “face to face” heart to hearts with friends who I don’t get to see often. Just make sure you have a fast internet connection or else it can end up being more annoying than fun.
It’s not always convenient to Face Time or Skype, which is why phone calls are important. Texting can be impersonal and while it can be a great way to quickly share small bits of information, you should wait to share more important stuff while on the phone.
Sometimes, despite my best efforts, life gets way too busy and much too stressful. If I find myself with no time to communicate with my closet friends then I always have my email plan to fall back on. Every Sunday morning, I carve out some time to send weekly emails to any close friends or family members that I haven’t been able to catch up with all week.
One of the best ways to stay close to your long distance friends is to travel together! You are not able to see each other often so when you do see each other, you should make it as fantastic as possible. Exploring new places and going on new adventures together is the perfect way to do that. Even just planning the trip together provides a fun experience. If possible, you can travel with all of your friends from various places in one trip!
Do you have a best friend who lives far away? How do you manage to keep your friendship strong?
Ever since I can remember, I have had a hard time making decisions. My decision making process normally involves tons of pros and cons lists in addition to some sleepless nights. When making a big decision, I can’t help but think of what I may be missing out on after my choice is made.
Major life decisions are something that we are all going to have to deal with at some time or another so it is best to have a plan of action for when these nail biting situations occur. I believe it is important to make decisions that you will feel good about years down the road. I think it is equally important to get to these decisions without an unreasonable amount of stress added to your life currently.
The first step to making decisions you won’t regret is considering all your options. Be honest with yourself about all the options that you currently have even if some of them seem ridiculous or far-fetched. Next you have to lay out all the possible positive and negative factors relating to each option. Give yourself decision-making time to look at all the different scenarios without having to rush. Once you have come to a conclusion, sleep on it. Giving yourself some time for your choice to sink in will help you know if it is a decision you can really live with, years from now.
Giving yourself as much time as possible to make your choices is the best way to ensure living without regret. Major decisions should not be rushed. Once you have slept on it and you wake up with the same outlook, you know that you can go ahead and take action. Whenever I wake up the morning after I have made a decision, I remind myself that I am fully capable of knowing what is right for me and I took the time to be sure. Then I stick to my choice and I don’t get upset about anything I may miss out on or that may go wrong in the future.
Things may go wrong because that is life but it is important to trust yourself and not waste time dwelling on the past. The more decisions you successfully make, the better you will be at it. It is important to trust yourself and to keep moving forward with no regrets.
Lately I have been trying really hard to get some sort of work out in every day. When you are trying to get healthier, exercising daily is important. The biggest problem that I am facing is that I sometimes find myself incredibly bored towards the end of my gym workout. The five following workouts are helping me combat that boredom.
Basketball is amazing because it tricks me into enjoying running. The running and jumping involved in basketball make it a great cardiovascular workout and while you are burning off the fat, you are also strengthening those muscles!
Jumping in the pool or ocean is a great way to get a workout while still going easy on your muscles and joints. Swimming can help with flexibility, muscle toning, a healthier heart, and even asthma symptoms. Not to mention, I always sleep like a baby the night after a pool workout.
If a daily trip to the gym feels monotonous, then videos may help bring some variety to your fitness life! I personally love anything that Jillian Michaels does, especially the 30 Day Shred. Beach body has a lot of great options as well that range from the extremely fun Hip Hop Abs to the extremely insane, Insanity.
Feel like skipping the gym this weekend? Why not grab your friends and tear up the dance floor? A trip to the nearest night club might be a great way to relieve stress, release endorphins, and tone those legs all while having fun with your friends. Just consider skipping the drinks (they are loaded with calories and they are not doing anything positive for your liver) and maybe wearing flats (your feet will thank you know, your joints will thank you later)!
5. Walking Dates
I go on walking dates with my husband a few times a week. It’s a great opportunity for us to talk without any distractions while still staying active. Sometimes we will walk to a local store or coffee shop while other times we will just walk until we feel like turning around and heading home. I also go on walking dates with some of my friends. It is a great way for us to catch up on what has been going on in each others lives without having to revolve all of our plans around lunch or dinner. Since my friends and I love to talk, these walks normally end up being quite long!
Hopefully one of these ideas can help you beat boredom and continue to stay (or get) active. Let me know if any of them work for you or other ways you enjoy working out with out getting bored!
Every week I am going to share a few of the people, things, or ideas that I am loving at the moment in a weekly post called Friday I’m In Love.
The Dexter Book Series
For the past eight years I have been completely obsessed with all things relating to Dexter. I have seen every episode of the Showtime hit and I have read all of the books except one. Knowing that the final season was this year, I decided to save the last book to read after the final episode aired. I am about half way through the book and so far, it is definitely living up to my expectations.
This year was incredibly busy and stressful which is a huge reminder of why fall never gets old. I am a big family person and I have no problem putting family before work. I love fall because all of the holidays associated with it force me to slow down and savor the moment. To be honest, I also love fall because everything tastes and smells like pumpkin.
A Vegan Diet
Who would have ever thought that I would prefer a vegan cupcake to a non vegan one? Certainly not me! I have been a vegetarian for the majority of my life but a close friend recently inspired me to try a month of being vegan. I already avoid milk and eggs on their own but I do eat things that they are in and I think cheese is a beautiful, beautiful thing. Not having cheese and delicious desserts have definitely been a challenge but the occasional vegan cupcake from Whole Foods has definitely made it a possibility!
Stephanie from The Loudmouth Lifestyle
Those who follow me on Twitter probably already know that I have so much love for Stephanie, the beautiful blogger behind The Loudmouth Lifestyle. Those of you who follow me on Instagram will soon know that she is flying across the country and visiting me this weekend! She arrives tonight and I am so excited about all the blogger bestie adventures we are going to have!