I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends

Monday, August 31, 2015

Well, well, well look who decided to show up to her blog today. That's right, this girl. I know it's been awhile but I really wanted to use the last two weeks to spend as much time with Daniel as possible. He left bright and early Saturday morning so now we can get back to some normal scheduled programing, sort of. I'm still going to be somewhat busy with my school schedule but these scattered blog posts just aren't gonna work for me so we'll see how things go.

Today I'm here to ask for your help. I'm taking an Art History class this semester and from the first week alone I can already tell it's going to be one that I love. On Tuesday my professor told us about an opportunity coming up to go on an art trip abroad to Paris and London. It's happening in May of 2016 which also happens to be the month that I'm graduating. It only took a little convincing begging before Daniel agreed that I needed to go on this trip as a graduation present to myself. I've never been abroad before and unfortunately for me, it's a little out of our price range if I have to pay for it out right. When I received the flier with our trip information, it mentioned using two sites called Go Fund Me and Fund My Travel, which help people like me raise the funds necessary to cover some of my trip costs. That's where you come in. If you're so inclined, I would appreciate any help in raising the funds for this trip. Donate if you can, or share my campaign profiles on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus if that's a little easier for you. Seriously, any little bit helps and I will be forever and eternally grateful to each and everyone of you.

My campaign link can be found at fundmytravel

P.S. I just created my first ever Twitter account. I repeat, I just created my FIRST Twitter account ever. Do I realize I'm about five years late to the party? Absolutely. Wanna follow me anyway? You can find my profile here

Happy Monday, everyone!

Dear Dad, Happy Birthday

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Dear Daddy,

I think everyone deserves a birthday shoutout, you even more than most. So thank you for all that you do for me, and for us. You've always made our birthday's special and I hope that we've been able to do the same for you today. I am so happy to be in the same state as you so I can join in on the celebrations. You're the best, most wonderful dad a girl could ever ask for and I can't wait for all your birthday's to come. Happy Birthday, I love you.

Your Daughter,

Five on Friday: Disney Highlights

Friday, August 21, 2015

I can't believe that the first week of Daniel's leave is already over. We've got one more week left but unfortunately its going to be filled with school and other less fun things than this week. Yesterday we found time to fit in our much needed Disney trip and since I still don't seem to have time to share an actual fully written post with you guys I thought I'd share Five on Friday post with the highlights of our Disney trip.

One// It's the 60th Anniversary of Disneyland this year.

Two// That means I had to pick up a pair of 60th Anniversary Minnie ears.

Three// We of course had to make a stop for some pineapple dole whip floats. 

Four// During the anniversary year there are so many more characters out around the park. This trip we saw Ariel, Jasmine and Aladdin, The Evil Queen from Snow White, Alice and the Mad Hatter, Mary Poppins, and Goofy. Usually these characters stay more behind the scenes.

Five// We never leave without picking up a new Disney coffee cup for my collection. Yesterday we saw this adorable Lady and the Tramp cup set and I knew I had to have them. How cute are they?!

Tonight Daniel and I are heading to my favorite restaurant Ink in Los Angeles, I can't wait to share all about it! Happy Friday! 

Weekend Snapshots

Monday, August 17, 2015

This weekend flew by and our busy schedule is just beginning! Daniel and I flew in on Saturday morning and we were so tired most of the day th. On Sunday we went to a Dodgers game and then went out for my best friends going away party at a place called Dirty Bull. Overall it was so much fun but since I'm running out the door again I thought I'd share a few quick snapshots with you all. 

Happy Monday, everyone! 


Friday, August 14, 2015

It's been awhile since I've put together a nice and easy currently post, and since things are going to start getting pretty busy around here in the next couple of weeks I thought this would be the perfect way to wrap up things up for a little bit.

I am currently...

Packing...all of my stuff up to head back home! My clothes seem to have found their way all over our little apartment so I've got quite the job to do.

Feeling...mixed emotions about leaving North Carolina. Of course I'm so happy to be heading home but I'm also not ready to spend another four months without my husband.

Eating...these AMAZING lemon garlic butter shrimp from Half Baked Harvest. As soon as I saw this picture I knew I had to make these shrimp, and they definitely did not disappoint. They were a little spicy and a lot garlicky and buttery and just perfect, go make this asap!

Angry...at our washing machine. I thought it would be a good idea to get all my laundry done before I leave that way I'd have less to worry about when I get home. But our washing machine is the worst and everything black that I put in there came out covered in white detergent. Now I'm rewashing it without more detergent, praying to the laundry gods that my brand new black jeans aren't ruined.

Watching...all the seasons of Parenthood. I've tried to stop myself from rushing through them because only five out of the six seasons are on Netflix. But I'm already on season four and I feel emotionally attached to the characters. I can't stop now, I've gone too far.

Anxious...about our five hour flight home. There's no specific reason other than I give myself flight anxiety every time! I'll feel so much better having Daniel on the flight home with me though.

Excited about...next week. I've got a packed schedule filled with a hair appointment, a Disneyland day, a dinner date night with my husband at one of my favorite places ever and all the family activities I could possibly imagine wanting. I'm determined to make the most out of my last week before I'm headed back to school.

Hoping...that our little fur babies won't be too upset at me when I get home. I'm going to suck up all the cuddles I can get over the weekend.

Craving...fall. Don't roll your eyes at me, I'm aware it's only the middle of August. But I can never get enough of fall and I am beyond ready for it.

What's going in your life currently? Happy weekend all!

Saving On Textbooks

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

I can't even begin to comprehend the amount of money that I've put into purchasing textbooks over the past four years. Seriously, it hurts to think about it. But now, heading into my fifth and last (finally) year of college, I've gotten much better at finding more affordable textbooks. When I first started school, I felt the need to walk into class with all of my books and supplies ready to go. But this was mistake number one. In one semester I purchased a 400 dollar biology book that I opened once, maybe twice, throughout the entire semester because my professor printed out notes each week for the students that outlined the chapters. After that happened, I realized I needed to be much smarter about my textbook choices. I continued to do the same amount of planning in order to be prepared for class, but I looked over all my options before simply buying the first one I saw outright. Here are my tips for finding and buying affordable textbooks throughout your college career. 

One// Wait until you've had all of your classes at least once before purchasing your books (unless they email you ahead of time telling you what you need). A lot of teachers will be honest about how much you're going to need your book. Some are willing to let you purchase older versions or can tell you where they've seen the book at its cheapest rate.

Two// Check all of your options. When I get the name of my book I like to check every avenue to see whats the smartest decision for me. I check my school bookstore, amazon, and a few local shops or online outlets to see which one has the cheapest version of the book that I need. Always buy used if you have the chance. Most places will openly tell you about any highlighting or markings that could be a distraction, but as long as there isn't too much damage then that is the smarter way to go. 

Three// See if renting is an option. After I check the buying price at each place I also check the renting price (and the sell back price on sites like amazon). Sometimes it makes more sense to rent, while other times it makes sense to just buy the book and get a little money back later. That 400 dollar book I mentioned before could only be sold back for about 60 because my school was switching versions for the next semester. That was definitely a time that renting could have been more beneficial. 

Four// See if anyone else at your school is selling the book at a cheaper rate. Sometimes students who have taken the same class as you in a previous semester will be trying to sell the book. Double check all the other options first so you don't get ripped off but a lot of them are usually just trying to get the books off their hands so they can buy ones for the new semester. 

Five// Just take your time with it. It can be a lot of work to find the best route for textbook purchasing, but it really is worth it in the long run. You will save a lot of money, or at least make a little back at the end of the semester if you just do your research and take your time. 

This semester I only plan to spend around 200 dollars for 18 credits worth of classes. I've done my research and I've planned out the cheapest ways to purchase my books so far. Prices change so keep your eye out if you decide to plan ahead of time, and always give yourself a little room for error because it isn't always in your control. 

Sleepless Nights

Monday, August 10, 2015

Do you ever have those nights? The kind where you're so tired, you get tucked into bed, fall asleep and then within a couple of hours its like someone set off the alarm in your head and suddenly you're ready to start your day. Except you can't, because its two in the morning and you don't have to be awake for at least another five hours. Those are the absolute worst, and it's what I experienced last night. I went to sleep around nine-thirty but for some reason right around two in the morning I was wide awake. I felt bad because I tried adjusting myself, thinking maybe I just needed to get a little more comfortable but it was to no avail and all that I was accomplishing was waking up Daniel. Then I tried staying as still as possible instead, which just got my mind racing as opposed to my body moving. I checked my phone, had some water, checked my phone again and got to the point where I just wanted to cry. I needed sleep, my body needed sleep, but it just wasn't going to happen.

I have to think that there is a better way to handle those sleepless nights than the way last night went. I mean if anything, I should be trying to be as productive as possible, right? My brain is going a million miles an hour so I should be too. But the only problem there is that eventually the night hours will run out and I'll be left exhausted for the rest of the day. So, what in the world am I supposed to do? Here are some things I might try next time I'm having a sleepless night.

One :: Read something. As much as I love reading, it definitely makes me a little sleepier. I've already got my handy dandy book light on the bedside table and maybe picking up a book and reading for a few minutes might help me fall back asleep.

Two :: Have a snack. I'm pretty sure that it goes against a lot of 'healthy' rules to eat past seven or eight at night. But trying to sleep when you're even a little hungry is really hard. Especially when your stomach is making noises louder than that alarm in your head. Grab a small snack that you can eat that won't make you feel yucky in the morning when you wake up, but will be enough to still fill you up so you can get some sleep.

Three :: Make a cup of tea or heat up some milk. I personally go in the tea direction, as milk at any temperature makes me feel a little sick. But choosing a type of tea like chamomile is a great choice for something to make you feel a little sleepier.

Four :: Actually get something done. Maybe the reason you're not sleeping is that you have too much to do and a lot on your mind. If you feel up to it, maybe get something done. Knocking one thing off your checklist could truly help you to ease your mind a little bit, but check it again in the morning to make sure that your half-sleeping self didn't do anything crazy!

Five :: Try sleeping somewhere else. Maybe your bed is the most comfortable place on one night, but the next it just won't cut it. Try the couch, or a guest room. Maybe switching a mattress or pillow would give you a better nights rest.

Six :: If all else fails, make yourself a big bowl of popcorn and watch Netflix movies till morning. You might be tired all day but at least your heart will be happy and full after hours of binge-watching.

That last option is my personal favorite.
I'm lucky because I don't have these nights too often. But next time i'm struggling to get some sleep I'm hoping that some of these tips will make it a little easier. 

Five on Friday: Thing's I'm Looking Forward To

Friday, August 07, 2015

Happy Friday pretties! Today I'm linking up here for another Five on Friday post. I'm heading into my last week here in Fayetteville so I thought I'd share five things I'm looking forward to when I get back home.

It is both a blessing and a curse to live within an hour of Disneyland. I usually purchase some type of annual pass and spend as much time there as possible. Daniel and I are already trying to decide when we can sneak a trip in during his two week leave! There's just nothing else like it. 

Two//Our Fur Babies
I don't remember a single time in my life where I lived in a house that didn't have at least one animal in it at all times. Being here for the Summer has been the longest I've gone without being with any of our pets and I can't wait to get back home for some cuddle time! Side note - Dear giant flying cockroach that I found and chased around my bedroom at 11PM on Wednesday night, you do NOT count as a pet. I do NOT wish to keep you. Please NEVER come back, ever again. 

Three//My Person
aka Maia, my best friend who also happens to be leaving a week after I get back home to start her semester at San Francisco State. I miss her like crazy already but I'm happy that at least we'll be back in the same state, and now I have an excuse to go to San Fran whenever I need a little getaway. 

Four//The Beach
I know that being in Fayetteville we aren't really too far from the beach. But back home I am much closer. I can drive right along side it on the PCH every day to school if I choose, or take a quick second to stop and look for dolphins. It's so relaxing and comforting knowing that I'll be so close to it again. Although it's usually much too cold to swim in and that picture was a very strange day with 80-90 degree water. 

Five//Family Activities
Although I'm not a huge sports fan, I do like the occasional family outing to a Dodger's game. My Dad's birthday is coming up in just a few weeks so Daniel and I bought tickets for the three of us to go to a game together to celebrate with him. I'm ready for some Dodger dogs!

Have a wonderful weekend! 

College Care Package Ideas

Thursday, August 06, 2015

Starting college can be hard. Being in college can be hard. Finishing college can be hard. I'm heading into my last year and sometimes I still wonder what I'm doing there. I love my classes, most of them anyway. I enjoy waking up and heading to a coffee shop to prep myself with a little caffeine before hitting the commute to school. I like buying school supplies and starting each semester off fresh. But it can be daunting. For those of you who know anyone who's heading into what can be one of the most exciting times of their lives, I suggest that you do everything you can to support them. Currently, that person in my life is my best friend. She's not entering her first year of college, in fact, she's heading into her junior year. But she's making the switch from community college to university. She's leaving all her friends and family to attend school six hours away. Which might not seem like much, but when you're in a routine and you make the choice to leave your comfort zone it can be a scary but exciting new adventure. To make things a little easier on her, I want to put together a little going away care package. Here are the types of things that I would include.






You can find all of these products at Urban Outfitters. It is one of my favorite stores of all time because you can find so many quality items there, I usually shop for most of my clothes and accessories there, and the apartment items are just as good. Support the college student in your life by putting together a perfect care package for them! If you're in college now, what would you like to receive in a care package? 

What's Hap-"Pinning" Wednesday Link-Up

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Today I'm linking up with Jenn from Going the Distance, and Jessi from Jessi's Design for a What's Hap-"Pinning" Wednesday post. I am all about Pinterest and when I saw this link up I was only too thrilled to have an excuse to share the things that I usually obsess over by myself, with all of you! Here's whats been happening on my Pinterest boards lately.

favorite hair color pin//favorite home improvement pin//favorite travel pin//favorite food pin//favorite accessory pin//favorite outfit pin

You can follow me on Pinterest here. What have you been pinning lately?

Kate Spade Wallet Round-Up

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Recently I've come down with a little Kate Spade fever. I want the bags, I want the shoes, I really want the wallets. Maybe it's because I'm growing up, but I feel the need to start investing in a clothing style that will paint me in a more professional light, especially nearing my last year of college as I plan to start pursuing internships and interviews. I've been selling a lot of my clothes on the Poshmark website as a way to get rid of some of the things I no longer plan to wear. As for a wallet, right now I happily use my fifteen dollar purse/wallet combo from JC Penny to carry everything I need, but by the end of the year I hope to own one of these beauties to jumpstart my new, more adult, wardrobe. Here are some of my Kate Spade favorites that just so happen to all be on sale.

Where do you find your favorite wallets?

Hello August: Goals

Monday, August 03, 2015

Although the weather may not agree, in my mind August is the beginning of the transition from Summer to Fall. It's the end of summer nights, and the beginning of early mornings preparing for long days of classes. It's my favorite transition between seasons because the beginning of Fall is the beginning of everything I love. I'm a big believer in goal setting. I think it's important to have a clear view of what you want to accomplish, even if nothing necessarily comes of them right away. Here are some goals I have for the month of August.

- Focus on the good. This is so important for this month because Daniel and I will be transitioning back into our long distance relationship status. I really need to make the attempt to focus on the fact that despite our distance, we're incredibly luck to have one another and there is so much good in our lives that we should be thankful for every day.

- Be money smart. I mentioned before that Daniel and I are working towards paying off a very large amount of money by the end of the year. I want to continue budgeting and keeping track of our progress so we can reach our goal! Obviously things will come up, especially with school beginning again and the cost of textbooks going through the roof. But as long as we keep a plan I am confident we can make it happen.

- Start the semester off right. This is a goal for the end of the month because my semester doesn't start till the 24th, but I hope to start strong so I can have a good jumping off point that will continue through to the end of the semester.

- Find the causes of stress in my life and eliminate them. This one is so important. I've come to find out that the neck pain I experience daily is due to the vertebrae in my neck being rotated severely. Unfortunately the cause of this could be anything, but a major factor is stress. The way I see it, if I can eliminate the stress, I can eliminate the pain. I'm working on changing the small things in my life that I have control over in order to help me relieve some stress so I can feel better overall.

- Spend time with the people I love. I have missed my family like crazy since I left to spend the Summer in North Carolina. I can't wait to get home on the fifteenth and remind everyone just how much I love them and how thankful I am to have them all in my life.

- Eat more Ben & Jerry's. Okay, that ones not really a goal for the month...just a personal preference, especially after giving this milk and cookies flavor a try over the weekend! ;)

What are your goals for this month?

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