Monthly Archives: September 2016

my 20s

fri-yay ten: america the beautiful

September 30, 2016

so i have been recently re-obsessed with america.

that sounds completely different now than it did in my head…

what i MEAN is that i have started thinking about places in america that i would love to visit. i will always love traveling abroad but dat shiz is expensive yo. so lately i have been taking notes of places my fav bloggers live, where my friends take photos, etc etc to remember for when i am too broke to go to thailand but could swing a road trip to somewhere in the great u s of a.

i am going to write this as fast as i can so that it’s as organic as possible and link a photo to the name of the place with the image of what i want to see when i am there. these are literally just off the top of my head so yolo here we go!

1 | charleston, south carolina

2 | bryce canyon, utah

3 | new york, new york

4 | boston, massachusetts

5 | martha’s vineyard, massachusetts

6 | nashville, tennessee

7 | antelope canyon, arizona

8 | yellowstone national park, wyoming

9 | literally any island, hawaii

10 | savannah, georgia

just because you might not have the money to go somewhere where they speak a different language doesn’t mean you need to miss out on the thrill of traveling. go visit a friend, do a road trip, visit a nearby national park. our world is beautiful if you just take the time to go see it!

 

vibed to the latest grey’s anatomy episode. i haven’t been super impressed lately…? #dontgetmad

beauty

the great mascara hunt of summer 2016

September 28, 2016

okay so after trying a gazillion mascaras, i have found le winner.

you might be asking yourself, “why in the world does she care so much about mascara?”

touché, my internet friend.

two answers:

  1. life is pretty bland around here so i try to make grand adventures out of kind of nothing. a trip to starbucks turns into the most exciting thing i do all day. going to work involves also stopping at sephora to browse around or taking the long way home to bump to music. going on a walk involves finding the perfect podcast to listen to. so finding the perfect mascara was a way for me to take my mind of some other more serious, less frivolous things.
  2. i don’t wear a lot of make up and i am trying to wear less, especially on my face. since the only thing i regularly replace is mascara (because blush and bronzer last A G E S), i let myself spend a little more. i’d rather have one really nice one that i use til it’s completely dry than three cheaper versions that i rotate until i get sick of them which is usually when they’re only about half finished.

these are the ones i tried:

  • too faced better than sex: my favorite before le winner. h8 that name, love(d) the mascara. the only problem is that it has a lot of “fall-out” which i learned from my pals at sephora is when mascara kind of just falls off your eyelashes throughout the day which makes them look kind of worn out by the end. i’d have to agree. this mascara makes you feel like a million bucks when you put it on but after comparing it to le winner, it just didn’t have the same lasting effect.
  • maybelline great lash: it just doesn’t do much for me? it’s pretty wet, doesn’t give a lot of volume (which i need for my spindly little lashes) and i end up getting another one everytime i buy it.
  • covergirl lashblast: the bristles on this mascara are useless – they’re SO short. by the time i give up on my 78th coat trying to get some length, they’ve become so thick that i get annoyed. merp.
  • bobbi brown eye opening: this made my eyelashes v heavy and didn’t give them a lot of length. however, i do get why it’s called eye-opening because your lashes look very black which rims your eyes and gives them a bright-eyed look. maybe if i had longer lashes it would’ve worked better for me!
  • l’oreal double extend lash extension effect: holy smokes that’s a mouthful. so this mascara has a primer which will make your lashes look really defined and pretty. if you’re looking for a more natural looking lashes mascara, this is the one. i like a little more volume and drama. #thrills
  • l’oreal voluminous volume building: that feels like the same word twice to me – anyone else?;) i had hopes for this little guy but alas, another return. it was very wet and thus clumped together with every coat since it never really fully dried.

and le winner is…lancome’s hypnose drama instant full volume! this little tube is freaking expensive. completely hear you on that. but, i’ll admit it, i am vain about my eyelashes. so i’d rather get a nice mascara than get starbucks everyday. s u e  m e.

reasons why it rocks:

  • it still looks good after a full day of wearing it
  • it will give you length, definition and fullness. which is VERY hard to pull off i have learned
  • it’s VERY black which i lurveeeee #ohthedrama
  • the angled, curvy brush actually helps me get full coverage on my lashes and they look more full which is a FEAT because i am pretty sure i have approximately 7 lashes. total.
  • it smells good…? no idea why but it has like a nice scent? guess that’s what you get for selling your soul to lancome
  • the packaging makes you feel like a regal baller whilst amidst your other feeble make-up products that are being worn down to the bare bones

quick tips: to make your mascara last longer don’t pump the mascara brush in and out of the tube. you’re forcing oxygen into the tube which will cause it to dry out faster.

oh, and there’s a LOT of product in this lancome tube so the first couple of times i had to lightly scrape some excess off but it’s golden now. i’m taking that as a plus because the more the better for that price point.

if you’re at the end of this post, i just want to say that your commitment to lashes makes you both amazing and insane. welcome to the club.

p.s. i’ll let you know how long it lasts and what my thoughts are after a full term of using it. why did i just say full term? no, i am not pregnant.

 

vibed to this is us while writing – is anyone else really into this new show? it’s a good one. and i am PICKY when it comes to tv shows.

my 20s

instafollow: lifestyle/mom bloggers

September 26, 2016

I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS ONE FOR WEEKS.

okay, yes, touché, i could have just written it earlier. after all, i am in charge around here.

i love lifestyle blogging. i just think it’s so creative how people can take daily life and capture it in tiny squares. i totally get that some people think it’s too much or overdone but i think it’s pretty cool to see moms or young gals in their twenties that are able to take the mundane and view it in a perspective that makes it beautiful.

so these are instagram accounts that i love on HARD. i comment. they reply. i think they know me. they probably don’t. i read their blogs. i think we’re friends.

etc. etc. etc.

so these are the mom bloggers, the lifestyle bloggers and the all-stars of my feed. giving you the elite eight this week because you know me – if i ain’t got one to fully recommend, i ain’t gonna.

here…we…go….!!!!

1 | @camppatton: grace patton makes me laugh with (almost) every instagram post. this is my all-time fav photo on instagram. ever. she doesn’t do a load of sponsorships and her account is just refreshingly REAL. and she has wit if i’ve ever seen it. oh my, she is FUNNY. i feel like she could have a book of her instagram photos + captions and i would buy it for my coffee table. she’s catholic and i just feel like i know her, okay? okay. *ps phoebe, one of her daughters, truly slays my heart. she is so cute and sassy.*

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2 | @ash.beck: ashley it one of my good pals here in fresno. i met her on the first day of anthropologie training and it was friend-love at first sight. she is exactly what you want in a friend and feed: real, kind and jesus lovin’. she is trying out the idea of intentional shopping with me so you’ll be seeing her name pop up around here in the next couple of weeks!

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3 | @mamawatters: she’s kind of like the pioneer of mom ‘grammers. she has this kind of old soul, midwest, home cooked vibe. don’t know what i mean? look at her insta and you’ll figure it out reaaaaal quick.

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4 | @mytinytribe: oh my gosh, i love this lady (and her aesthetic). please look at this post, fall in love with her sincerity, realness + commitment to her daughters, and follow her. period. the end of story.

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5 | @burtsbrisplease: other than the fact that i have ZERO idea how to pronounce bri’s instagram handle name, this gal is cuuuuute. and her son? his hair and little mischievous smile? i cannot. (but i can and do follow.)

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6 | @taylorgolden: she just seems to really love to find beauty in her life. she is friends with mary lauren, #7, and they both just have this really fresh, creative aesthetic that inspires me! also she just had a son and named him sage – gooooood bye HOW CUTE.

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7 | @marylauren: i loved this post because it reaffirmed that she’s actually living simply and not just saying that. she has a pretty fresh, simple lifestyle feed and it doesn’t feel overdone. gosh, her and taylor are just so darn cute.

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8 | sarah hart: SARAH AHHH I LOVE SARAH. her feed is one of my favs. her son gideon is literally just the cutest little bub with this mop of hair that makes me want a little boy so bad. she has this way of writing captions that makes you feel like you’ve been pals for awhile and, gosh, i just really like her. she thrifts, cooks and like sunflowers. check, check, and cheeeeck.

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vibed to pitch perfect while writing. specifically the part where fat amy says “well, sometimes I have the feeling i can do crystal meth, but then I think, ‘mmm, better not.’ #classic

my 20s

fri-yay ten: falling in love

September 23, 2016

IT IS FALL!!!

even thought it’s still quite hot here in central cali….

anyways, i love all the beautiful quotes that go along with this season. the instagram captions yesterday were kill-ing it.

so for this week’s ten, i compiled all my favorite quotes about fall. they make me think of crisp air, crunchy leaves and cinnamon flavored goodies. grab some apple cider and read on!:)

1 | “If a year was tucked inside of a clock, then Autumn would be the magic hour.” -victoria erickson

2 | I can smell autumn dancing in the breeze. -unknown

3 | Life start all over again when it gets crisp in the fall. -f. scott fitzgerald

4 | Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree. -emily bronti

5 | fall has always been my favorite season. the time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale. -lauren destefano

6 | and all at once … summer collapsed into fall … -oscar wilde

7 | i’m so glad i live in a world where there are octobers. -anne of green gables

8 | autumn … the year’s last, loveliest smile. -william cullen bryant

9 | no summer nor summer beauty hath such grace as i have seen in one autumnal face. -john denne

10 | october is about trees revealing colors they’ve hidden all year. people have an october as well. -jm storm

 

i hope you’re feeling the crispness of a new season. i’m glad that summer is over and i feel so reenergized! you with me?!

vibed to rivers and roads by the head and the heart

my 20s

let’s stop the glorification of lukewarm

September 22, 2016

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annie f downs, author and all-around all star, talks a lot about how we should just feel what we feel. stop making it seem like what is going on in your life isn’t happening. stop making yourself feel smaller by comparing your circumstances to someone else’s that are maybe more “extreme”.

you have a right to feel your feels.

you’re sad? feel sad. you’re jazzed about life? get jazzy. you’re giddy about the future? WE NEED MORE OF THAT GIDDINESS!

i just couldn’t agree with her more. i think our society makes us lukewarm. we’re supposed to be chill. we shouldn’t care too much, be too much, feel too much.

well funny story: i do all the above.

i am not chill.

i care about people so much my close friends need to remind me that i shouldn’t have anxiety over other peoples’ happiness. i struggle with being viewed as ‘too much’ – i am too into my dreams, my faith, my passions. i feel everything deeply, from worrying about family to worrying about a homeless man i see once to worrying about whether my future husband will like taylor swift.

so this summer was really hard on me. between graduation and moving home, going from having a whole campus of friends to zero, and the precarious health of my mom, i felt like i was on an endless roller coaster of emotions. add on the stress of finding a job and it was almost too much.

but honestly? i mainly just felt like i was the only one going through this rough transition. i felt, and sometimes still feel, so lonely. no one ever talks about how hard the hard stuff is. how hard it is to take care of a sick family member and all the tension, stress and sleepless nights that go with. how hard it is to see someone you love so much struggle and live too far to help them. how hard it is to graduate with such big dreams and then get continuously crushed with rejections.

we see these lukewarm lives on social media, lives of “couple goals” and “squads”, and we get brainwashed into thinking we shouldn’t feel the feels. that everyone else has it together. that we’re the only ones that has ever moved back in with their parents and worked retail to keep their sanity. that we’re the only ones who sometimes cry over a lost friendship or dances to throwback jams when they’re getting ready.

i had convinced myself at some point along the way that no one else feels these feels. but people do. actually, everyone does.

we’re not made to be lukewarm. we’re made to love deeply and act passionately. so even though my blog and instagram are often beautiful edited photos, i hope you see that i am trying. i just really love editing photos but i will not edit my feelings.

at the end of the day, doing this is not really for you, but for me. i am trying to rewire myself to feel what i am feeling instead of pretending to be this chill gal who doesn’t care. because i do care. A LOT. about ALL of you. about my future. about my family. about flavors of ice cream. and i love that part about myself.

so if i seem overly into this whole blog dealio or if i seem like one of those “really” catholic girls or if i seem like anything too much, that’s because i am. i refuse to be lukewarm.

will you join me?

 

vibed to more like love by ben rector while writing.

my 20s

late summer kale barley salad

September 21, 2016

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okay so today got COMPLETELY away from me. however it is 10:26 p.m. and i refuse to go back on my promise to have a post out everyday this week.

i wanted to elaborate on the recipe i posted to instagram for my trader joe’s tuesday series because you NEED this salad in your life.

so go buy*: 

  • kale
  • barley
  • red bell pepper
  • cucumber
  • corn (you can use canned but if you can grill it the night before and chill it, it’s SO good)
  • onion
  • kalamata olives
  • feta cheese
  • salt + pepper
  • olive oil
  • balsamic

*i am not including quantities because it kind of depends on what you want from the salad! but if you maaaaaade me, i’d say 1 cup barley and a bag o’ kale. the rest is genuinely up to your taste buds. consult them.

day before: 

rinse and dry the kale to making it spankin’ clean. then take a little sea salt and some olive oil and massage the kale. this will make the kale soft and better in the salad! put in a big bowl and place in the fridge to chill overnight. cook the one cup barley and chill overnight as well.

day of: 

chop kale into smaller pieces and combine with barley. mix in the chopped bell pepper, corn, onion and  cucumber. take the kalamata olives and cut into fourths – mix that right in. crumble feta cheese in (lots of that, let’s be real). then mix with olive oil and balsamic plus salt and pepper to your preference. mix mix mix.

enjoy. eat the next day for lunch. enjoy again. eat the next day for dinner. enjoy again. make the next week and repeat.

 

vibed to the finale of so you think you can dance while writing. #longliveJT

my 20s

dreamy 23

September 20, 2016

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back in january (you guys, another new year is in 3ISH MONTHS…WHAT???), i made some new year’s resolutions and i actually stuck to them. it’s funny – i think i just assumed i would never stick to new year’s resolutions because i always see things on instagram or memes about no one ever doing theirs so i have never tried! #thatsdumb

i kept my resolutions simple and small with a quote to tie them together so i could easily remember them. my 2016 goal overall is to minimize comparison so as to eliminate jealousy. but more on that in three and a half months when i do a wrap-up on what i’ve learned in 2016…

i often talk about goals and dreams, etc etc but i have a hard time actually remembering what those are. for example, i have this “bucket list” i often refer to but i couldn’t tell you what’s on my bucket list because it doesn’t really exist anywhere on paper – ya know what i mean?

SOOOO to keep myself accountable for 23 being a rockstar year, i wrote a list of 23 things i want to do by august 5, 2017. if it worked for 2016, i figure it’ll work for 23 too. i have a private list of a few more personal ones but these are quantifiable and i can physically check them off my list as they are completed which i am ALL about.

anywho, you can follow along as i try to cross them all off over the next 10.5 months!

ps the bold numbers are ones i have already completed!;)

  1. visit new york
  2. make my own ice cream (holiday flavored? i am thinking pumpkin or cinnamon…or both…)
  3. (finally) buy glasses i love to wear (for once in my darn life)
  4. go on a road trip to an outdoorsy location (to vitalia: insert yourself here)
  5. shoot an engagement photography session
  6. spend intentional time with Him everyday for at least 15 minutes
  7. bake a cake for no reason and top it with flowers
  8. launch a blog 
  9. read one self-development book per month
  10. make plans to travel internationally either in year 23 or 24
  11. go to confession once a month
  12. go home to colorado and visit my brother
  13. go thrift shopping at least once a season
  14. make a terrarium
  15. learn how to transfer my writing onto the computer to make my own lettering
  16. make a desktop background to share
  17. design a mock-up for a planner (this is a serious pipe dream of mine)
  18. make a diy holiday wrapping paper post
  19. shoot a family photography session
  20. schedule a wedding as the main photographer
  21. use first names whenever possible (grocery store, flight attendants, the homeless, etc.) to promote dignity of life
  22. volunteer at least three times (more would be great!!!)
  23. get 5,000 followers on my instagram account

 

a few tips for those of you who want to make a list for yourself: keep it manageable, post it in a place where you’ll frequently see it and make each item something quantifiable. for example, instead of “read more” you can do “read 3 books every month”, etc.

23 has already been challenging and blessed. i feel like this is the year that god is just completely breaking me down to build me into something better because i am being tested and am reevaluating so much of what is important to me – which of course includes all of you!:)

vibed to the best crew by tep no while writing

beauty / style

instafollow: beauty + style

September 19, 2016

hello friends! i have missed you!!!

so sorry for the lag on posts last week. learned a valuable lesson of blogging that i need to pre-write posts when i am going to go visit my nephew because i couldn’t seem to put him down for long enough to write a post. 😉 as my way to make up for that, there will be a post everyday this week!

today i am continuing the instafollow series with my fav beauty accounts to follow! this summer i have become quasi obsessed with beauty tips, especially for make-up. i am not a make-up wiz by any stretch of the imagination but i do want to start to buy the best of the best instead of a million drugstore or cheaper versions … because it ends up equaling the same amount!

so as a result of my curiosity, i have found some really good accounts so let’s get started!!!

1 | kristin lauria: her account is mainly just photos of her doing life and being adorable but her YouTube channel is where it’s at my friends. props to everyone who goes to cosmetology school and does rad make-up, but i don’t want anything super extreme so i tend to follow normal gals with a knack for finding the best products! kristin is a make-up fiend and i LOVE her videos. i have tried lots of her recs this summer and they’re always good. also she’s freaking sweet as cotton candy and it’s not an act. literally so nice.

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2 | emily schuman of cupcakes and cashmere: emily does a ton on her blog but her style is a bit out of my price range usually. however i LOVE her beauty section. one of her editors, alina, used to be a beauty editor and they just seem to know it all together. #dreamteam. she keeps it affordable for the most part and does awesome comparison pieces with lipsticks, mascaras and shows lots of photos so you can see the differences! also her daughter, sloan, is so cute on snapchat and i feel like i know them personally…

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3 | kayti oldham of the beyouty bureau: kayti is just super real and her instagram doesn’t have millions of followers but she has the best tricks and budget-friendly make-up tips. she won’t tell you to go spend $100 on a face cream, always knows where the best sale is and she’ll always respond to your comments if you have a question or want her advice! she struggles with acne and makes sure to use products that won’t irritate her skin which i SUPER appreciate. also she’s just super genuine.

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4 | jenna from jenna’s kitchen: she is one of my all-time favs. follow her on snapchat. she is SO real and down-to-earth and i just feel like we could be friends in real life. we’re a similar level of girly-ness. she started to do more and more style posts on her IG and she’s on fleek, peeps. this is all funny because she’s actually a foodie account but i just love her style!

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5 | julia engel from gal meets glam: first of all, FOLLOW HER ON SNAP CHAT. funny story: i actually was kind meh on julia because i don’t reallllyyyyy have the same style as her but her account is such good inspiration and her photo quality is unreal. but then i followed her on snapchat and liked her as a person which makes me want to follow and support her! she’s based in san francisco with her husband but they are moving to charleston (i think soon?) and they travel a LOT which i love to see on snapchat. also she snapped all of NYFW and i was d.y.i.n.g. i follow her mainly for her beauty tips because she has amazing hair and the make-up i go for which i call “enhanced natural” – essentially it’s not overdone and just enhances your natural features! some of her products can get pricey but she often does drugstore finds or cheaper products so it’s worth it to look at her beauty page! #stillnotoverherhair

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6 | caroline joy rector from un-fancy: she was the one that coined and formulated (is that a word?) the idea of a capsule wardrobe, at least to my knowledge. she is pretty minimalist and although i think i am a bit more interested in trends and styling, she has the BEST ADVICE for staples. i literally stalk her posts for the essentials like the best cami, the best jeans, the best sandals. i hope that i emulate her in that respect – that you know you’re getting a solid recommendation when you see mine!!!

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7 | christina from new darlings: omg her hair. HER HAIR AND HER GLASSES AND HER BANGS. when she does the braided hair crown, i lose my mind. she reminds me a little of what’s her name from new girl…ZOOEY!!! anyways, this girl’s account is quickly becoming one of my favorites. i have been really refining my style accounts lately and hers always makes the cut. she has a really fresh, crisp look that i am leaning towards these days. i would say it’s madewell meets j crew meets urban. hers not mine. #oneday. LOVE HER. also her husband and her are so cute and trendy it pains me.

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8 | anna from in honor of design: this was a hard toss-up because i want to include her in my lifestyle instafollow post but i love her style and her beauty go-to’s are CONSTANTLY epic when i try them so maybe i’ll just put her in both? anna is hands-down one of my top three fav accounts on instagram. the end. she’s a catholic mom of five, loves her hubs, keeps it real, has great taste and is remodeling their home which is a dream of mine one day. she just seems to like all the things in life i do? idk, one day we’ll be friends so stay tuned. she has great style but also epic pregnancy style – is it weird that i sometimes bookmark her maternity clothes for when that happens for me? is it weird that i am not pregnant or with any plans to be anytime soon and still do that? welp, the cat is outta the bag on that one. (jk, the cat is veryyyyy deep in the bag. i hate cats.)

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9 | kathleen kay: i love kat! she works with one of my friends at the georgetown free people and she is always wearing the best new pieces from them. i follow her because then i know what to buy at free people and that is a very important aspect of my life. also a lot of respect for her love of emojis.

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and that’s it! i don’t have a tenth and i don’t want to give you someone sub par so there ya go. i hope you find some inspiration in these accounts! see you next monday for the instafollow: lifestyle/mom blogger series which is most certainly going to be my favorite. #goals

vibed to starving by hailee steinfeld … which i am weirdly obsessed with?

my 20s

fri-yay ten: iphone cases

September 16, 2016

tell me you don’t love a fresh new iPhone case and i will most certainly not believe you.

if you follow me on snap chat (@ania.sullivan), you saw my reaaaally long story yesterday about my realization that i replace things way too often that are neither broken nor entirely used.

examples:

planners (first time finishing one will be this december)

make-up

jeans

….and iPhone cases!!

so i did a little experiment with myself and told myself that i could not buy one until it broke. AND IT FINALLY BROKE! i should not be this excited seeing as though i now i have to buy a new one but i haven’t loved how my clear one has become so gross looking so HELLO FRESH CASE WAZZUPPPPP.

i research phone cases all the darn time so here’s my top contenders for this week’s fri-yay ten:

1 | i have a veryyyyy strong attachment to marble lately so this decal + case is quite tempting

2 | sonix has the best cases for whimsical little graphics – can you not with these cute cacti?

3 | still obsessing over ferns so this one is not leaf-ing the contest anytime soon

4 | okay so i love this leather madewell case but the reviews are very mixed as far as quality? anyone have experience?

5 | and then there’s a leather one at j crew….

6 | and on apple’s store website….

6 | all white everything. as simple as this case is, i REALLY like it. #helpmehelpmyself

7 | if rifle paper co has a version, it will ALWAYS be a contender. this floral case speaks sweet nothings to my soul.

8 | oh no i found more marble – and it comes with a screen protector. it’s like stumbling upon gold in the wild west. EXCEPT BETTER.

9 | i had a clear case this time around and i am not opposed to all clear errythingggg again? however it does tend to look a bit worn after awhile…

10 | this is just gorgeous. blue floral watercolors for my phone??! maybe yes.

 

snap me your favs! making a decision by sunday so stay tuned for which i choose if you care in the slightest! 😉

vibed to believe by mumford and sons while writing.

my 20s

fri-yay ten: xavi style

September 9, 2016

SORRY THIS IS LATE! but i had it in my head to have a fri-yay ten of xavier photos since i am here visiting him.

and guess who’s delivering?

THIS GIRL. or should i say, this aunt? 😉

introducing fri-yay ten starring xavier joseph, my sweet 4-month old nephew!! (complete with captions of course.)

1 | when bae wants to hold your singular finger between his two fingers because that’s OF COURSE the most natural way to hold hands…

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2 | pillowtalk

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3 | remind me never to buy toys for my kids. all he wants to do is hold my hands and feet

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4 | when someone tells you what they got at Ted Drewe’s

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5 | when you see someone trying to steal yo girl…

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6| …and then you remember how good-looking you are…

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7 | …and lol to yourself about that fleeting lack of confidence in your charm

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8 | when your aunt wants to kiss you but you’re not having it

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9 | friday at 3 pm:

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10 | friday at 5 pm:

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wishing you all a weekend of rest and snuggles! 🙂

vibed to the sound of xavier’s coos while writing this #heaven