How to: Start Listing Your New Year Resolutions

How to: Start Listing Your New Year Resolutions

I don’t know about you, but I’m in a little bit of disbelief that 2018 is merely 8 weeks away. They say time flies when you’re having fun but the fact that the end of the year is practically here has me feeling like I’ve overslept one too many days since January.

Obviously, we still have two major holidays to prepare for. I am the last person to add any major to-do’s to my list during the holiday season, so believe me when I say I am not advocating anything elaborate or ultra time-consuming. However, waiting until the very last week of 2017 to decide what you want to get out of an ENTIRE YEAR doesn’t seem to leave a lot of room for contemplation.   Continue reading “How to: Start Listing Your New Year Resolutions”

My Fall Playlist

My Fall Playlist

We are officially in the fall season as of yesterday and I couldn’t be more excited for everything it comes with! Bring on the pumpkin spice aromas and fall inspired lattes! One of the things I especially love about fall is the mornings. I don’t know if it’s just my mind playing tricks on me, but I feel like the air of a fall morning seems so crisp and clear.

It is always slightly chilly so when I get out of bed the first thing I do is reach for a sweater and some house slippers. Typically, when I get dressed for the day I play some music and fall mornings are no exception of course! Here are a few songs that are not only the cherry on top to what I envision a perfect fall morning to be, but for a perfect fall in general:  Continue reading “My Fall Playlist”

Crest 3D Whitestrips Professional Effects Review

Crest 3D Whitestrips Professional Effects Review

Because teeth whitening products are sold in a few different forms and by so many different brands, choosing just one can be hard to do.  I did quite a bit of research before I felt comfortable enough to purchase Crests 3D Professional Effects Whitening Strips. Most of the YouTube video’s I watched and online reviews I read praised the product for its results. Out of the complaints, the majority were about how harsh the teeth sensitivity became while using the strips. I have never experienced any sensitivity in my teeth before however, so I figured I would give the whitening system a try. I am super glad that I did because I was actually pretty impressed by the results! Continue reading “Crest 3D Whitestrips Professional Effects Review”

What I Wish I Knew Before Adopting a Plant-Based Diet

What I Wish I Knew Before Adopting a Plant-Based Diet

When I decided to go plant-based, I planned on quitting meat products cold turkey. I am typically really good about maintaining self-control so even if I miss a certain meal, I can refuse to partake and be just fine if it’s what I’ve made up my mind to do. When I actually went plant-based however, there were a few key things I feel that I would have handled differently had I known about them prior to making the switch.

That brings me to this post! If you are planning on eating a plant-based diet or even just thinking about it, this is my little letter to you! It may be able to better prepare you for what is to come and make your transition just a tad bit smoother.

What I Wish2

 

My Appetite Would Increase

In my first week I was constantly snacking on popcorn, chips, grapes and pretty much any vegan snack I could find in the moment. If you don’t feel hungrier than normal in that initial first week, you may feel it pretty soon. Although it won’t seem like it at first, this newfound hunger can be a good thing as long as you are choosing all of the right snacks (something I wasn’t doing at all). Just because a food item says “Vegan” on the label does not automatically make it healthy, so please choose wisely. 

Here are a few healthy snacks that help you to feel fuller:

  • Kale Chips
  • Hummus and Pita Bread
  • Guacamole on Toast (lightly seasoned with black pepper and salt makes this SO delish!)
  • a LARA Bar
  • Smoothies! (I’ve found that adding spinach to the mix makes any smoothie way more filling)
  • Nuts

My Skin Would React

how-to-find-the-right-facial-cleanser

I don’t know if it was because of all of the snacking or diet change in itself, but for the first few weeks I felt like I was 13 again, just constantly waking up to new break-outs. It wasn’t anything major, in fact it was very minor but it was abnormal for me. Especially with the skin care regime I’ve kept up with (which by the way, doesn’t consist of any of the products in the photo above).

It is perfectly normal for the skin to go through a short purge stage when you change your diet, so it is nothing to worry about. Just be sure that you are sticking to a skin care regimen and drinking lots of water to help flush all of the toxins- that your body is already trying to get rid of- out.

I Would Have to Meal Plan

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The picture you see up above is of a vegan pizza from one of the VERY FEW vegan restaurants I’ve come to know of in my area. What is my point in placing it here?

It’s rare.

I can’t just order delivery pizza anymore (and i’m not going to lie, I do miss that small little interaction with the pizza delivery people when they give you your pizza…sigh…). I can’t just realize that I’m hungry and wait a few minutes until my microwavable meal is ready. I can’t just be out and about and stop by McDonald’s for a full meal (that ISN’T a salad..). I actually have to account for what my breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be.

Now don’t get me wrong, since I have been vegan I have discovered quick microwaveable meals and have actually ordered vegan food from a few drive-through places (french fries count, right?) and restaurants.  Like I mentioned when talking about the increase in appetite, not everything with “vegan” stamped on it is healthy. I try to stay away from these foods to stay cost effective, but also to keep from becoming dependant on these kinds of preservative-packed meals because honestly, it is so stinking hard not to.

My Advice to Those Considering Going Plant-Based

If you are considering adopting a plant-based diet, first off I want to congratulate you! You are already taking a positive and extremely beneficial step towards a healthier and happier life! That’s pretty noteworthy!

Secondly, please don’t get easily discouraged. I think often times, with any kind of lifestyle adjustment, it is easy for us to become so overwhelmed with having to get used to the change that instead of toughing it out, we end up going back to our “norm”. In order for something to become your new norm however, you have to develop consistency and stick to it. It is only as hard as you make it! You got this!!

Lastly, for all of my fellow picky eaters out there, don’t compare the vegan foods to the meat foods. You will be doing a great disservice to yourself, trust me. For the first few months, you’re going to have to change the way you view eating in that you eat because you have to- not because you want to. Acknowledging that the food you eat may not always meet your expectations is a huge part to sticking to the diet. In my opinion, homemade vegan meals often taste better and fresher, but you may have to mentally prepare yourself for the change in texture and sometimes in taste. If you remember that we eat to nourish our bodies and not to satisfy our palettes than you will be just fine! (:

If You Are Considering Adopting a Vegan Lifestyle…

I’ve got you covered in the beauty department (;

I have partnered up with Siobhan, a lovely blogger friend of mine, to help you guys out in the make-up department if you’re interested in finding really good vegan/cruelty-free make-up products! Check out her super helpful post here.

If you have any questions about switching to a plant-based diet, feel free to ask below! I’d be more than happy to answer your questions and others might be able to help you as well(:

 

 

 

 

 

 

19 Life Lessons I Learned at 19

19 Life Lessons I Learned at 19

August 8th was the first day of an entirely new decade in my life. The big 2 0. Twenty years old! That’s T W E N T Y years old! It seems unreal and almost like the end of an era. 19 was that awkward in-between year, kind of like 9, 12 or 17; the ages that come right before the more “monumental” ages (according to society and cultural norms that is).  In all actuality,  every age is “monumental” in its own right. Each age comes with its own challenges and in those, its own lessons! These are the ones I learned at 19:

Candid Birthday Photo (Ninas) 1. You can either let the day run you, or you can run the day.

2. It isn’t who you are that holds you back, but who you think you’re not.

3. Happiness isn’t measured according to your circumstance, but by your attitude towards your circumstance.

4. You are your own worst enemy.

5. Blessings can be disguised as burdens.

6. It is better to choose significance over prominence.

7. Comparison is the thief of contentment.

8. Say what you mean, and live what you say. Otherwise, say nothing.

9. If it sounds too good to be true, it isn’t. 😛

10. The longer you spend doing the wrong thing, the longer it’ll take to get to the right thing.

11. No one can be better at being you, than you.

12. There is only one ultimate truth, but two ways to learn it; Experience or Listening

13. It’s okay to not have it all together all of the time!

 14. Growth is inevitable.

15. It’s the little things in life that matter (:

16. Sometimes, you get into periods in life in which you can’t be understood by others.

17. Old habits get increasingly harder to discontinue the older you get -.-

18. When you don’t have anyone to look up to, it might be because you’re that person for someone else.

19. For something that can be so hard to do, letting go is so freeing!

 Learned something in your 19th year that you didn’t see here? Please share your piece of wisdom with others below! 

Learning to Be Alone

Learning to Be Alone

Cool Down (2)

Often times life throws us curve balls. We can be skipping along one path holding the hand of a dearly loved friend or group of friends and all of a sudden find that we are at a fork in the road. To make matters worse, the road directly ahead of you is only wide enough for one person to walk on… which means that you have to walk alone.

The word that so many seem to be afraid of: Alone. Meaning no one but you. Party of one.

It can be a scary concept to grasp, especially if you genuinely love the company of other people. After all, it’s nice to have people to share life with. Part of being human is having that God-given craving for connection and community with other people. I’d be lying if I told you that being alone is the best thing in the entire world because, well, it just isn’t. Some of the most priceless moments we get to experience in life are those shared with others. Don’t get me wrong, there are times when being alone is enjoyable but it is when God unexpectedly changes your plans so that you are alone with Him that loneliness starts to seem like the chore you really dread doing.

I say chore because during that time, you truly are at work.

You’re doing you, learning all about your capabilities, your weaknesses, and building upon your strengths. But I want to share a secret with you: You’re not the only one doing the work.

God is working too, and a lot harder than you. He is actually handling the biggest task: Molding you to be ready for the next big thing.

Think of God as the coach and you as the boxer. You may have won your last match, but now you will be fighting someone with even MORE skill, even MORE tact, even MORE energy, and even MORE speed. You just won’t be ready for that right away and you certainly won’t be ready for it playing tag team with your buddies.

You have to test your own will power by training for the next big thing alone.

That means you have to master the training you are going through, the training God is carefully and tactfully assigning you to, before you are ready to fight the next battle. So please, don’t squander the time you have!

I want to encourage you to use this time of loneliness to the best of your ability by letting God prepare you for your next big thing in giving you time to grow stronger and wiser. Get on your knees and actively pursue Him in prayer so you can hear His voice clearly as he guides you during this time. When your human desire for connection and community arises, take that to the Coach(; He knows when you need the refreshment only Jesus can provide.

I’ve listed a few bible verses below that I’m hoping will help you along in this season of your life. I suggest writing the ones that speak to you down and keeping them handy. That way if you ever feel your thoughts begin to down spiral into a pool self-pity, you can refer to one of these for a boost of hope, confidence, and surety.

but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life. 

-John 4:14

For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. 

-Jeremiah 29:11-13

But if we hope for what we do not yet see, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know how we ought to pray, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans too deep for words. 

-Romans 8:26 

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

-Isaiah 41:10

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you 

-1 Peter 5:7 

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds 

-Psalm 147:3 

For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. 

-Isaiah 41:13 

The LORD is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed

-Deuteronomy 31:8 

 

If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.

-John 14:3 

Use this time wisely friend. You are being strengthened, refined, and perfected as you even sit here reading this post! Make the most out of the time you have now, and surely you will find yourself expressing gratitude for every moment God worked on making you fit for the next stage.