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Six Things I Love Sunday: July 1

Wow, it’s nice to be back in the blogosphere! No, I haven’t died and miraculously rose from the  grave in order to do Six Things Sunday.  My computer has actually been broken, thanks to a certain dog who fell off my bed onto my laptop.  Yep, that happened.  So, I’m borrowing a friend’s computer right now to get some homework done and the like, and I figured I might as well quick do this blog post since it’s been so long!

 

1. Victoria’s Secret Voluptuous Volume Mascara

Why? Strangely enough, this is my favorite mascara.  I know a lot of people have their favorite cosmetic brands, such as Revlon or Neutrogena, but I like to pick and choose my favorites from a bunch of different brands.  I ended up trying this because I had a free coupon of some sort, and now I’m obsessed.  No mascara has ever made my lashes look this good.

 

2. Asymmetrical Dresses

Why? For some reason, I am in love with this style for the summer.  I have too many dresses to count that have this asymmetrical hem, and I think it’s just such a fun and flirty way to switch up your style.  I know a lot of people who either love or hate the trend, so I’m interested to hear what you guys think!

 

3. Air Conditioning

Me. If I was Asian and in a stock photo.

Why? This is a no brainer, but the last few days in Wisconsin have been HOT.  And I don’t mean 80 degrees and sunny.  I mean 105 degrees and can’t leave the house because it’s so humid and nasty outside.  Thankfully, I live in a house that has been blessed with air conditioning, and I have been cranking that baby up in the last few days.  I have been selfishly wondering what people back in the olden days did without temperature control.  I hope I never have to find out.

 

4. Autumn

Why? Feeding off of my last favorite thing, I hate the heat.  I would be perfectly happy with the weather being a steady 65 degrees year round.  Unfortunately I live in a state with four seasons, so I only get that temperature for half the year.  Most people up here love summer because of the brutally cold winter months we undergo, but I embrace the cold.  If I had it my way, it would be autumn always.  I love the chill in the air, the reds and yellows in the trees, the crunch of leaves underneath your feet.  I love that winter is just around the corner, which means cozying up under blankets and frolicking in the snow.  Alright, this is starting to sound cliche.  Mostly, I love autumn, and I can’t wait for summer to be over.

 

5. Summerfest

Yes, it really is that crowded.

Why? I’m assuming a lot of you don’t know what Summerfest is, and you are missing out.  Summerfest is the world’s largest music festival, taking place in Milwaukee every year.  Basically, for eleven days, everyone gets drunk and parties and listens to music all day long.  It’s seriously the best place to be, and I’m going tonight to see Brantley Gilbert.  There’s over a million people that show up every single year, with over 700 bands playing each year.  If you love music, you need to put this glorious festival on your bucket list.

 

6. Sister Wives

Why? This show has become my guilty pleasure.  Everyone loves watching things that are unfamiliar to us; it’s human nature to be curious, after all.  So when I first heard about this show, I knew I had to check it out.  Basically, the Browns are a polygamous family, made up with four wives (hence, Sister Wives), and one husband.  I love watching them interact and learning their story and how they live.  They receive so much criticism for their lifestyle, but they’re just trying to live a normal life like the rest of us.  I really recommend that everyone watches this show at least once, because it is such an eye-opening experience.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Holly, not Hollie

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Six Things I Love Sunday: May 6

Hello all!  Today is going to be a busy posting day for me.  I posted earlier this morning about receiving P90X, and I’ve decided that every day I will post about my progress with the program.  And of course, I can’t forget about Six Things Sunday!  So here we go.

 

1. Pinterest

Why? At first I was a little slow on the uptake with this site, but I’ve come to love it.  For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, Pinterest is a virtual pinboard on which you pin photos of anything you want.  You can organize the pins in folders too, so you can easily access exactly which pin you want.  Unlike a lot of people I follow on Pinterest, I actually use the pins that I post.  It’s a great place to find new recipes, gets some crafting inspiration, or even learn new workouts, among a multitude of other things.  I suggest you check it out, and while you’re at it, go ahead and follow me. 🙂

2. Wedges

Why? When it comes to heels, these are my shoe of choice.  I am not a girl that can wear sky high stilettos without breaking an ankle or two, so wedges are my go-to option if I want to add some height.  Plus, nothing says summer like a cute pair of wedges.  I’m sorry, but when I’m walking around Summerfest later this year, the last thing I want is to trip and spill my $6 Miller Lite everywhere while getting my stiletto stuck in some random crack in the ground.  Wedges will ensure that this will not happen.

 3. Jeopardy!

What a guy.

Why? I have been watching this show for years.  And when I say years, I mean a decade.  I remember spending weekends at my dad’s house when I was younger, and on Friday nights we would always watch Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune back to back because he didn’t have cable.  This early exposure turned me into a Jeopardy! fiend.  I watch the show almost every single day, and I can’t get enough of Alex Trebek’s dry wit.  My ultimate goal in life is to be on this show, but I’d be lucky if I could even beat a monkey.  Oh well.  A girl can dream, right?

4. Nook Color by Barnes and Noble

 

Why? I used to be an avid reader.  When I was younger, I would plow through books like my life depended on it.  Even in school, while the teacher was talking, I would be reading textbooks and taking notes ahead of time just because I enjoyed doing it (nerd status, right?).  Surprisingly, this love for note-taking has stuck with me as I’ve gotten older, but for awhile, I completely stopped reading for pleasure.  After I started college, I was so overwhelmed with my course load that the last thing I wanted to do was pick up a book and read it for fun.  Then, I got my Nook for Christmas, and I haven’t put it down.  Since December, I have read 21 books, which is more than I had read in the last four years combined.  I know that a lot of people hate tablets because you don’t get the actual feel of holding a book, turning its pages, etc.  I had these same worries too.  But once you get past the electronic-ness of the Nook, it’s so much better than lugging a book around with you.  I can access thousands of books with a simple touch.  I get magazine subscriptions, many of which have a free monthly trial.  Plus, I’ve found free knitting patterns on my Nook, which is great for when I need a simple project to work on and don’t feel like buying a book of patterns.  Okay, I’m rambling now.  Long story short, I love my Nook, and you should definitely check it out.

5. Neutrogena Nourishing Eyeliner

Why? I received this in my BzzAgent campaign box a couple weeks ago, but Friday was the first time I got around to using it.  I went through a pretty intense eyeliner phase in my teens, and I now cringe realizing how much a raccoon and I had in common.  The past few years, I’ve opted for a more natural look, which requires me shunning eyeliner altogether.  Until Friday.  My friend and I went out to the bars, so I thought I’d give this eyeliner a try.  Not only did it make my eyes pop, but it comes with a smudger, providing me with a perfect smoky eye.  I had never been able to get the smoky eye down before, but the smudger really made all the difference.  The eyeliner comes in four different colors, and it’s only $7.49 on Neutrogena’s website.

6. That Moment When You Finish a Really Long Paper

Precisely.

Why? I don’t think this even needs an explanation.  I have a 12 page paper due tonight about social media.  Haven’t even started.  Wish me luck!

Holly, not Hollie

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Spending Money Like It’s Going Out of Style

There is no other way to describe the last few days other than expensive.  Luckily for me, it was much more expensive for my boyfriend than for me.  As I mentioned in my last post, the boyfriend was going to take me shopping for my birthday instead of getting me a traditional gift.  The whole excursion took roughly three hours, and thankfully my boyfriend had his friend S along for the ride.  Nothing like discussing video games with your best friend while your girlfriend blows your bank account.  I ended up buying from H&M, Express, American Eagle, The Gap, and Charlotte Russe.  Warning: you are about to witness the aftermath of a dress-oholic.

So, without further ado, my haul.

H&M, $12.95 apiece

This was one of the first things I bought.  Overall, just two simple, solid-colored dresses.  I thought they’d be cute for day or night, so I ended up getting them in both orange and black.

H&M, $17.95

I’m usually not a big floral girl, but this dress was just calling my name.  I love how light and flawy it is, and I’ve always loved the high-waisted skirt look.  In fact, I have two other dresses very similar to this one.  Not as if I needed another, but when in Rome, right?

H&M, $12.95

This is by far my favorite dress out of the ones I bought.  I love the bohemian feel, along with the little braided belt that came with it.  Also, I think it highlights my curves without making me look fat, which is always a bonus.

Marshall’s, $29.99

For some reason, I have an obsession with white dresses.  Half of the dress collection I have is white.  To me, there’s just something so summery and beautiful about a white dress.  Hence, this lacy number.  This is the first one-shoulder dress that I’ve bought, and I was pretty happy with the price.  Usually Marshall’s requires a little bit of digging to find something lovely, and I’m glad I had the patience to find this.

Express, $59.90

To be completely honest, I’m still on the fence about this one.  I ended up getting it for 45% off because the store was running their 30% off sale, plus I had a coupon, so I don’t really feel guilty about buying it.  When I first tried it on, I thought it was cute and unique, but now the more I look at it the more I wonder what I was thinking.  What’s your opinion?

Express, $69.90

I’m pretty in love with this dress.  I love the cinched waist, and the little bit of leopard print adds a little bit of fun to a dress that might otherwise be considered stuffy.

Gap, $12.95

I really love this top.  It’s pretty casual, but that suits my lifestyle because nine times out of ten, I’m doing casual things.  It was originally around $40, but it was on sale for the above price, so I had to snatch it up.

Charlotte Russe, $5 apiece

Do you remember those sandals I bought from Charlotte Russe about a month ago?  Those cute ones with the orange beads?  Yeah, well, they broke.  One hour into wearing them, half of the beads fell off all over the pavement.  Needless to say, I decided to return them.  The employees gave me a really hard time about wearing them, even after I showed them the bottom of the shoes to prove that I hadn’t even gotten a chance to break them in.  Eventually, they agreed to give me a $10 store credit (even though the shoes were $34.95.  Yeah, I was kind of pissed.).  Since I couldn’t buy anything substantial with that amount of money, I took advantage of their $5 accessories sale and bought myself some bracelets and a new belt, in an attempt to make an effort to accessorize.

American Eagle, $34.95

I thought these were really cute, and I love the little silver detail and the braids.  However, I have tons of sandals.  Like, way too many.  These were kind of an impulse buy, so I’m debating returning them for something more practical, because realistically, these will get worn probably three times all summer since I have so many pairs already.

Whew!  That was exhausting.  Now, I’m off to find something to wear for dinner and drinks tonight with the girls.  It’s a little chilly, so I might have to forgo the dresses tonight.  Hope you’re all having a great week, and only one more day until the weekend!

Holly, not Hollie

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Six Things I Love Sunday: April 22

Happy Sunday everyone!  I hope you’ve all had a good weekend so far.  Here’s my six things for this Sunday.

 

1. H&M

Why? I’m kind of a late bloomer when it comes to H&M, but lately, I make a beeline towards this store every time I find myself at the mall.  The clothes are so cheap and so cute, and you’ll never find anything cookie-cutter there, which is awesome.  The only problem I have with this store is that it can be hard to find a size because everything is so picked through, but that’s not necessarily the store’s fault.  Overall, I think it’s safe to say that this is my new favorite store.

 

2. Cho by Zoya

Why? I ordered this from Birchbox and just received it in the mail on Friday, and I am in love with the color.  For me, it’s the perfect color for a neutral polish.  I was a little disappointed that I had to paint on three coats for a good color, but for spending only $1 (I used my Birchbox points!), I’m pretty pleased.

 

3. Luke Bryan

Whatta hottie.

Why? I cannot get enough of his music lately.  Aside from the fact that he is incredibly easy on the eyes, I can’t wait for summer so I can roll down the windows and blast his music for all of the world to hear.  Plus, I can’t stop listening to this song.

 

4. PINK Crop Tees

Why? Okay, okay.  I know a couple weeks back I posted about how I love everything PINK, but I swear, this isn’t a repeat!  I have three of these shirts, and I think they’re just perfect for a day at the beach.  Granted, there haven’t been many beach days in Wisconsin yet, but I’ve been wearing them around the house almost everyday in anticipation of warmer days.  Plus, I love how versatile it is.  It looks great off the shoulder or hanging low in the front or back.  Plus, if you’re like me and don’t have a super-flat stomach, it still provides enough coverage so you don’t feel like your belly is all exposed and whatnot.

 

5. Marley and Me

 

Why? I know this movie had been out for quite awhile, but I’m talking about the book, not the film.  I just got done reading it on my Nook, and I’m not going to lie, I teared up at the end.  I’m a huge dog lover, so I probably shouldn’t have read this book to begin with since I knew the ending, but it was worth it.  If you have only see the movie, I definitely recommend you read the book too.  So much better.

 

6. Tamales

Why? I’ll admit, this is a kind of random thing to post, but I went out for Mexican with my mom last night and had the most delicious tamales.  It’s basically some sort of meat (I had chicken) rolled up in cornmeal dough, then baked in a corn husk.  So tasty, and easily one of my favorite foods.

What are you loving right now?

Holly, not Hollie

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“So, have you found a job yet?”

These seven little words have recently become the most aggravating that could possibly be spoken to me.  I hear it from friends, acquaintances, even family members.  Normally, it wouldn’t bother me to be asked this question, because I have always prided myself in holding down jobs and working hard.  But now that the circumstances have changed, I can’t stand this simple question.

A few months ago I was diagnosed with GAD (generalized anxiety disorder) and social anxiety disorder.  For those of you don’t know much about these, it essentially means that it’s difficult for me to go out in public, converse with others, and/or cope with stress.  When asked, I can recall having symptoms of these disorders for years, characterized by tightness in my chest and difficulty breathing, but it was only recently that I started getting panicky while standing in line at the mall, sitting at my desk at work, and even driving.  I went to the doctor and left feeling relieved that what I had been going through wasn’t all in my head.  At the same time, though, the diagnosis really put a halt to not only my social life, but my work life as well.

I ended up quitting my job as a receptionist, because it was impossible for me to spend nine hours a day socializing with others in my office and on the phone.  I took all online classes this semester also, because I was having panic attacks from sitting in class.  I’ve been taking medication for about two months now, but it seems like my progress has been slow, if not nonexistent.  You can’t imagine (or maybe you can) how disheartening it is to not even feel confident enough to drive to the grocery store by yourself.

So, needless to say, it is exhausting and frustrating to be constantly asked by friends when or if I’m getting a job.  I understand that it’s hard for them to empathize with my situation, because none of them have to deal with it, but is it too much to ask for a little sympathy?  Yes, I know you are all doing well with your careers while I’m just trying to make it through the day.  Yes, I realize you want to go out to dinner, but have to settle for staying home instead.  Yes, I know you’re secretly thinking that I’ve become a buzzkill in the recent months.  But I’m working on it, and I want to get better, and “So, have you found a job yet?” isn’t helping.

Have any of you gone through anxiety or a similar disorder like this?  If so, please share.

 

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Just a Starter

Hi all! My name is Holly and I am the newest addition to the blogging world.  For me, I wanted to start blogging simply to keep track of the ideas and and inspirations I have.  Also, I want to be a source for others to find new, creative things to try.  My plan is to post once a day, for the next year.  Blogging has become such a great way to connect with others and I want to be able to look back on this day in 2013 and see how far I’ve come, creatively and simply as a person.

For now, some things you might want to know about me.

1. My name is Holly, not Hollie.  For some reason, since everyone and their grandmother has to give their child a “unique” name nowadays, I frequently find others trying to spell my name any way but the traditional way.  Hence, the clarification.

2. I’m going to school for Professional Writing, with a minor in psychology.  My ultimate goal in life would be to work for the magazine Psychology Today, but seeing as it’s probably a long shot, I have recently become more fond of the idea of being an author.  This idea is becoming more and more appealing to me because I love to write, and I think it would be more satisfying to write creatively on any topic I choose than to write what others want me to.

3. I’ve recently taken interest in more creative outlets, such as cooking and crafting.  I have never really considered myself an artistic or imaginative person, but I’m trying to convince myself that creativity is a mindset, not a genetic predisposition.  Hopefully this outlook pays off, otherwise I’m out of a blog and a future career.

I’m hoping that this blog is a good source of energy for me.  I love reading about what others think, as I gather most of my creative ideas from others.  With that being said, I’m excited to get started here, and I’m interested in learning more about the blogging world along the way.

Do you guys have any tips or thoughts for me?  If so, I would love to hear them!

Holly, not Hollie