Soulful November Playlist

Soulful November Playlist

The month of November is currently in full swing and I’ve finally gotten around to making my Spotify playlist for this month. I usually make a playlist for each month where I include songs that I feel are either appropriate for that particular time of year or just songs that I’m currently binging. This month, I thought I’d have more of an oldies/soul-filled playlist to listen to while working on homework or drinking coffee in the mornings. Talk about vibes, am I right? This is my Spotify account, so feel free to check out my eclectic music taste and all of my playlists!

I’m still adding songs to this playlist, but some of my favorites are currently:

  • Cigarettes and Coffee – Otis Redding
  • Bring It On Home To Me – Sam Cooke
  • You Send Me – Sam Cooke
  • I’d Rather Go Blind – Etta James
  • The Tracks of My Tears – Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
  • I’ve Been Loving You Too Long – Otis Redding
  • (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman – Aretha Franklin
  • This Old Heart Of Mine (Is Weak For You) – The Temptations
  • I Second That Emotion – Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
  • Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me) – The Temptations
  • Tired of Being Alone – Al Green

If you haven’t given any of these songs a listen before, you really should now! There is so much soul behind them (no pun intended, but I guess that’s why they call the genre ‘soul’ anyway…) and I would really love for more people to become familiar with these artists and their songs. This is goooooooood music!

Happy November my friends and keep jammin’.

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” – 1 John 4:16

-H-

 

Autumnal Touches

Autumnal Touches

Hey, y’all! I thought I’d share with you a few autumnal touches I have around my room at the moment. I’m not going to lie, I’m already preparing for Christmas since I’m one of those people who gets just too dang excited for the month of December! So, before I completely immerse my room in festive decor, here are some of my favorite autumnal spaces and things in my room!

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I’m totally itching to change my throw pillows right now because I have my Christmas ones all ready to go, but I feel like I would be socially exiled if I put them up before Thanksgiving, so these will have to do for now!

For some reason, I think candle sticks seem very appropriate for this time of the year. I love how they look with the other decor I have in my room, especially when I have one sitting next to a stack of my antique books.

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Dried flowers are some of the easiest decor you can have in your home. Though it might take a few days for the flowers to be fully ready, they make for a beautiful touch in a home, especially when they are placed in a brown glass bottle. I also threw this feather I found while in North Carolina and I think it adds a different texture to the mix.

The last little thing I want to put in here is this hook that I place my keys on. Another thing that always reminds me of autumn and this time of year are deers, although I’m not sure why. This hook is made of distressed gold-colored metal and adds a fun element to my room.

Even though I’m eagerly awaiting for Christmas to finally be here, I still love my fall-centered decor I have in my room. I’m sure you’ll see another post after Thanksgiving showing you what Christmas decor I have in my room, but until then, enjoy your Monday and prepare your bellies for the massive feast called Thanksgiving next week!

“Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken” – Psalm 55:22

-H-

 

North Carolina – August 2017

North Carolina – August 2017

In August, my parents and I took a trip up to North Carolina and Tennessee for a little vacation. I thought I’d add some pictures from our trip onto a blog post for everyone to see the antics we got up to!

 

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Hopefully, we’ll be back for another vacation sometime soon. Happy Wednesday!

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9

~H~

October Favorites 🎃

October Favorites 🎃

October is gone and I’m feeling both sad and excited. Sad because this year has been flying by and October is one of my favorite months, but also excited because this means November is here and that means Thanksgiving!!

I’ve recently been trying to write more blog posts, so I thought I would try something new and write a “favorites” post. Since it’s officially November now, I thought I’d share with y’all my favorite beauty and skin care products, as well as a sweet smelling favorite, for the month of October!

Skin Care

The first product that I want to mention is a face wash by the brand Simple. I’ve always struggled with acne, as I have pretty acne-prone skin, and this product has helped to maintain my breakouts for the most part this past month. This face wash is very moisturizing, and as someone with somewhat oily skin, it doesn’t over-produce oil by any means. It leaves your face feeling very clean and smooth, and for $4.89 at Target, it won’t break your budget!


The next product I’ll mention actually goes with the face wash. This is a moisturizer by the same brand, Simple. This product (as well as most other Simple products) has no harsh chemicals and no artificial perfumes or dyes that can irritate your skin, which is something that I really love about this brand. The only downside to having no artificial perfumes in this product is that it smells a little funny, but it doesn’t linger after you put it on your skin. It absorbs quickly and leaves your skin feeling very fresh and clean!

Beauty

This month, I didn’t try too many new beauty products due to the fact that I’m in college without a source of income… 🙂 Because of those reasons, I only shop for cheaper/drug store makeup products that’ll still get the job done. One brand that I’ve apparently been sleeping on is Elf products and boy do I regret not trying them out sooner…

Most of their individual products only cost anywhere from $1-$5 and that’s an incredible deal to me. I picked up this liquid highlighter/illuminator for only $3.99 and it’s proven to be one of my favorite highlighters that I own. I really like to wear this product when I’m not wearing much foundation, as it helps to provide a natural glow and it seems to sink into my skin much better than powder highlighters. You can add multiple layers of this highlighter to make it more eye-catching, or you can add a thin layer to make it more subtle. There really is no wrong way to go about this product.

Trying to take a picture of your own arm is actually kind of difficult, to be honest

Another product that I tried this month was a lipstick. I’ve been on the search for the “perfect red” and I think I’ve finally come close to finding it. It’s been very difficult to find a red lipstick that suits my fair skin tone, especially one that has blue undertones. This is the L’Oreal Colour Riche Collection in the shade “Blake’s Red” from the Exclusive Reds Collection. Anytime I put it on (which hasn’t been that often) I feel like I’m some sort of a 1940s film star. It gives me such a vintage vibe and I wish that I had more places to wear this lipstick to.

The last things I want to mention in the beauty category are two nail polishes. One of them is the Essie gel top coat, which was a total splurge for me. At $11, I thought that this was pretty overpriced. I still took the risk and bought it, though, and I really should have done this sooner!! I’ve always had difficulty maintaining the nail polish on my fingers but this product has helped me keep my nails looking much better than they usually do.

I also used this nail polish for the first time in a while and I’ve been loving it recently! This is the Sally Hansen “Hard as Nails” brand in the shade Mauve Over, which I feel is a perfect fall color.

Please don’t mind my chubby hand 🙂

Home

This time of year, there are loads of amazing home decor items that can be found at stores like TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and Ross, as well as fall-scented candles from Bath & Body Works. I picked up some candles towards the beginning of the month and, although I’m going to sound very basic for saying this, they undoubtedly smell like heaven in a jar. I got two candles (one of them is a Christmas one, so I’ll save it for later) and the one I’ve been really loving is in the scent ‘vanilla pumpkin marshmallow’. Anytime I have this candle lit, my whole apartment smells amazing.


Recently, the weather has been very cool and crisp, so I’ve had the windows open and let me tell you – you can smell this candle from outside and down the walkway. I only buy Bath & Body Works candles when they go on sale for around $11 or $12 each because, personally, I believe $22.50 for a candle is slightly expensive. Honestly, this candle is something that you’ll want if you truly love the autumnal season. Heaven in a jar, I tell ya!

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I’ve really been loving all of these products lately and I’m so grateful that October was so good to me! I hope everyone has a great start to the new month of November, and I’ll see you in my next post!

“For nothing will be impossible with God” – Luke 1:37

-H-

 

Where Have I Been?! – Life Updates

Where Have I Been?! – Life Updates

Hey y’all!

Happy Thursday! I haven’t written a blog post on here since the end of July and I’ve been so bothered by it. I thought I’d give a little bit of a life update and tell you all what I’ve been up to lately. Just a heads up: this is going to be a pretty long post!

To start, August was a hectic month. I took 11 credit hours this summer and managed to get an A in all of my classes after working hard to give my GPA a little bit of a boost. As soon as I finished taking my last final exam, I was on my way home to travel up to North Carolina with my parents. We enjoyed hiking around and exploring some new places that we hadn’t visited before, which is always an interesting experience.

Unfortunately, I only had a few days to really soak up the relaxation, as I had to come back home to Tallahassee in order to prepare for sorority recruitment.

The week leading up to recruitment, also called “Spirit Week” for us, is an intense week filled with recruitment practice run throughs and late nights at the house, but more importantly, this was a time for me to really sit and reflect on why I joined my sorority and why I decided to stay. Each day we had a different theme for dressing up to make this week a little bit more fun.

One of my favorite days we had was “AOII’s All That,” where we all dressed up in 90s attire. I tried my best to dress up like a Spice Girl, but it may have been a little lost in translation…. (if I’m being honest, I just really wanted to wear this corduroy pink skirt that I got for $3 from Forever 21!!!)

We also had a day that was “rocker” themed, so I dug out my over-sized denim jacket from the back of my closet. I sewed patches on the back of this jacket four years ago and I’d like to think that I was ahead of the game when big denim jackets became popular again.

Spirit Week taught me a lot about not only the recruitment process, but also about myself and my sisters. Even though we got frustrated and stressed out at times, we still managed to hang in there (although half of us were already sick with colds and strep throat)!

To be honest, I can’t really remember much about recruitment this year. I was sick with a cold and it felt like my throat was on fire every time I uttered a word, but the week seemed to go by in a blur. I only took some pictures from recruitment on the first day because that’s when I was feeling good and healthy, but I promise we looked cute every day that week!!

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The best day of recruitment finally came – BID DAY!! This was such a fun day and I loved our theme, “AOPalooza,” which was based around music festivals. We were able to welcome home 92 amazing new members and I’m so proud of my sisters for recruiting such wonderful women.

That was by far the most hectic month that I’ve had so far, so compared to August, not a ton has happened in the last two months. I started the fall semester of my junior year of college and I’m currently taking 16 credit hours. I’m still a psychology major, but I have the potential to finish that degree up by next December, so I’m considering the possibility of turning my current sociology minor into a psychology-sociology double major with that extra semester of time. Nothing is set in stone, but I thought I’d throw some of my school life/academics in here to prove to my family that I’m not just out here partying every night!!

Onto the month of September! I took TWO little sisters, Maddie and Leah, and my heart has been so full ever since.

Aren’t they precious?! That’s pretty much the only memorable thing that happened that month…

In October, we had a 70s themed social with Delta Chi at the Strip, which was so much fun!

My friends and I also took a spontaneous trip to a rather sketchy pumpkin patch instead of going to the football game one day. We saw a beautiful sunset afterwards and went back home to carve some pumpkins that we ended up getting at Walmart because they were waaaay cheaper.

Overall, this semester has been extremely busy for me, but I feel like I’ve been getting so much more stuff done than I have in the past two years. I’m taking more classes than I have ever taken in the past, I joined the German Club on campus and became their Public Relations Assistant, I got a 98 on one of my brain and behavior tests (which has been one of my biggest accomplishments in my entire life), I joined an IM softball team that plays Wednesday nights (we lost 4-12 at our game last night, but that’s ok), and I’ve been feeling more confident with myself than I ever have in the past. Junior year is starting to look good on me and I’m so grateful for it.

I’m really hoping to write more often on this blog, as my achievements and good moods have left me feeling so inspired recently. Also, one of my sorority sisters, Laura (preppedupblog.wordpress.com) has been killing her blog posts lately and I need to add her in here! I wouldn’t have written this post today if it wasn’t for her. YGG!!

~Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His love endures forever.~ 1 Chronicles 16:34

-H-

 

Birthday Bits & Bobs

Birthday Bits & Bobs

Hey y’all!

My birthday has come and passed me by and now I’m all of a sudden 20 years old! It’s nice to know that I can’t be classified as a teenager anymore, so getting into my twenties has definitely had it’s perks in all of my 3 days of being one year older. This year, my birthday fell on a Tuesday, which wasn’t terrible, but it also wasn’t great. My parents had come up to visit the weekend prior which was spent out on my aunt & uncle’s boat on the Wakulla River dodging rain storms and enjoying the company of my family. We got sunburned as heck and my sister got sick on the night we went out to dinner to celebrate my birthday, but overall, it was a good weekend spent with the people that I love the most. On my actual birthday, my aunt took me out to the Tallahassee Museum and it was nice to just walk around and see all the animals and walk around the old buildings they have nestled away back there. Later that evening, my sister and her boyfriend took me out to dinner at a very fancy, relatively unknown restaurant in town called Cracker Barrel and filled up our little tummies before heading to the movies to see the film Dunkirk. If you haven’t seen it yet, I would highly recommend buying a ticket soon because this film is very well done with amazing acting and cinematography. All in all, my birthday festivities were filled with a lot of love, laughs, and good food, so thank you to everyone who contributed to making me feel so loved over the past few days!

Now, on to the fun stuff! I got a few little goodies for my birthday that I wanted to share with everyone because I’ve really enjoyed using them so far and I wanted to sit down and write something for this blog.

For my birthday, I mainly got a few makeup items, a perfume, and some books from my sister. I’m super happy about all of these items because they were things that I needed in my life at this moment, so thank you mom, dad, and sissy!!

The first few things I’ll mention are the two Lorac lipsticks that I got.

Let me start of by saying that these are some of the smoothest and most buttery lipsticks I’ve used so far. I absolutely love how neutral the colors are, this first one being in the shade ‘Secret Agent’. I was in need of some lighter lipsticks (although this color is described as being a plum brown) in my makeup collection since I tend to gravitate towards buying the darker berry colors, which doesn’t necessarily go with my everyday makeup.

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The second shade that I got was in the shade “Exhibitionist‘ and it is a lighter, more peachy-orange shade than Secret Agent. Both of these lipsticks come from Lorac’s ‘Alter Ego’ line, which, according to their website, contains antioxidants such as acai berry, pomegranate, grape seed extract, and vitamins C and E.

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I want to throw a comparison out here with Lorac and Mac lipsticks, as I genuinely enjoy both brands, but I’d like to mention a few things. In terms of price, Mac lipsticks usually run at about $17 per tube, whereas Lorac runs at $18. Not a huge difference by any means, but I thought I would mention that they are pretty comparable in price. Personally, I’ve enjoyed using the Lorac more so than the Mac lipsticks so far. The Lorac lipsticks I previously mentioned are both matte and the major difference I see between the two brands is that Mac matte lipsticks dry out my lips to no end! Within an hour or two of putting on a matte lipstick from Mac, my lipstick gets crumbly and comes off and I feel like I need to coat my lips in copious amounts of chapstick at the end of the day. Maybe that’s just me? Who knows. I still love both brands, but I will most definitely be reaching for Lorac lipsticks next time I want a new matte rather than Mac.

Speaking of Mac lip products, I also received a full-sized lip liner/lipstick duo, which I have been really enjoying so far! The lip liner is in the shade ‘boldly bare,’ which my mom owns back at home and I absolutely loved using it when I visited for the Fourth of July. I used it almost everyday and now I have one of my own, so thank you mama! The lipstick is in the color ‘Velvet Teddy’ and this is another lighter colored lipstick that I can wear daily. It’s a beautiful shade that can be worn with a lighter makeup look and it really adds color to your face without over-doing it. I’ve already dug into all of these products, as you can probably tell, so I apologize for the messy-looking pictures of these products!

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From top to bottom: Lorac’s Exhibitionist, Lorac’s Secret Agent, Mac’s Velvet Teddy, Mac’s Boldly Bare Lip Liner. As you can see, Velvet Teddy and Exhibitionist are very similar in color!

Each time I get a new eyeshadow pallete, I always run out of the lightest shade the quickest out of all of the other shadows in there. I love being able to set my eyeshadow primer with a light, all-over-the-lid color which gives a nice base to any other eyeshadows I apply. My skin is pretty fair, so if I want to rock a “barely there” makeup look, I need to cover up the rather dark veins and discolorations on my eyelids. So basically, I wear the lightest shades everyday no matter what makeup I’m wearing, which, as you can imagine, means that I run out of those shades almost immediately after getting the pallete. Because of this, I asked for a single eyeshadow that is similar to the typical lighter shades you usually get in every eyeshadow pallete and my mom got me the Mac eyeshadow in the color “Brule,” which is such a perfect shade for my skin color! I’m so excited to use this everyday because it applies so well and is decently pigmented to cover up my naturally darker eyelids.

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The most exciting present I received this year was the perfume that I had my eyes on after falling in love with the scent when I used some samples that my mom had lying around her room. The perfume is the Jo Malone ‘Nectarine Blossom & Honey’ in the 1 fl. oz. bottle and I just have to say that, although I’ve only had it for 3 days, it is probably my favorite perfume I’ve ever had. The scent is just so fresh and sweet smelling and the packaging is just too darling.

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I’m not one to splurge on perfumes by any means. The perfume that I was wearing most recently up to this point was a $12, 3.4 fl. oz. perfume from TJ MAXX that smelled like the beach. This little 1 fl. oz. bottle from Jo Malone costs around $60, while the larger 3.4 fl. oz. bottle is around $130. I’m so happy to have gotten this perfume and I can definitely imagine myself buying the larger bottle in the future when I have enough money saved up!

 

I really am thankful for all of the birthday wishes, gifts, and love I received over the past week and I’m blessed to have lived to see another year in my life. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this post, as this is something that is a little new to me! I haven’t done any product reviews/hauls on this blog, but if that’s something that you’d be interested in seeing more often, let me know! I’d love to start doing monthly favorites and more fashion-related posts, so keep an eye out for those in the future. I hope y’all have a wonderful weekend!!

 

~As a deer longs for flowing streams, so I long for you, God~  Psalm 42:1

-H-

Thrift Store Tips!

Thrift Store Tips!

Hi y’all!

I am finally getting around to another blog post, as I’ve been MIA for the past few months. School, stress, and life in general, suddenly hit me like a brick wall all at once after I published my last blog post and I had difficulty finding the time (and inspiration) to make another one, but, alas! I come to you with my most recent post about my favorite pastime: thrift shopping!

Thanks to my parents, I’ve been thrift shopping and going to garage sales since before I was born (my mom probably went to both when I was chillin’ in her womb, I assume.) A good portion of the items and decor that we have back at home are from either of those two sources. What can we say? We love cheap stuff and vintage. It’s an addiction.

That being said, when it comes to thrift shopping, I’ve been around the block a few times and I’ve gathered a fair share of tips when it comes to finding some great hidden treasures.

 

1. You can’t expect to go to just one thrift store and find everything that you’re looking/hoping for.

This is something that I hear a lot when I talk to people about thrift shopping. They expect to waltz into just one thrift store and find anything they’ve ever dreamed of finding: the perfect pair of worn, 90s high waisted mom jeans that they can cut into shorts, a vinyl record by their favorite artist, a vintage art piece that would match perfectly with the decor in their apartment, etc.

This problem is mainly due to two things. One, you might be hitting up the same thrift store because you aren’t aware of any other thrift stores in your area. If you’re dealing with this particular problem, go online and do some research! More than likely, there will always be at least one other thrift store within a few miles of you, so take the time to do some research. If you’re very serious about getting into thrift shopping, don’t be afraid to drive a little further than you’re used to in order to discover new hidden gems!

The second possible reason behind this issue could be that you’re not making your thrift shopping a common enough occurrence. If you truly want to find some good items, you need to be checking back at your stores on a regular basis, ESPECIALLY on weekdays (if possible) when a lot of people are away at work. New stock comes in all the time and if you want to beat those shoppers who snatch up all the good stuff for the sole purpose of putting it on Ebay or taking it to the flea market, you need to make your local thrift stores another home to you!

Don’t get discouraged and give up if you don’t find something that you’re looking for the first time you go to a shop. That discouragement might prevent you from finding something amazing if you don’t come back!

2. Don’t be afraid to dig around! 

This is another thing that could be preventing you from finding all the goodies! If you just stick to the surface-level items that are scattered about the shelves or the bins, you’re practically scanning over the same items that everyone else has looked at and passed by. Don’t hold back from pushing items aside to look behind them; you never know if something is lurking back there! Also, someone might have deliberately left a cool item hidden back behind some other knick-knacks in order to hide it for when they come back at a later time. As bad as this sounds and please don’t hate me, but I always think that if they left it behind, it’s fate for me. Finders keepers, am I right?

3. Most of the time, things can be DIY’d and repainted

This is another thing that I keep in mind when I go thrift shopping. If you’re looking at furniture and see a brilliant piece that’s built well and you think would go amazing with your decor, don’t turn away from it just because of the color! There are many YouTube videos or websites that can show you step-by-step instructions on how to repaint, stain, or resurface furniture in order to turn it into something that is perfect for your style. Plus, completing a DIY project on an item that will be put on display for all to see might be rewarding!

The same can be said for little knick-knacks! A popular style for decor right now is to have items that are solid milk white glass or pure gold (other metals, too.) This makes things very simple when looking for decor items to fill your home at thrift shops! An ugly, outdated ceramic knick-knack can become something totally unique and modern with a few coats of some spray paint! It’s definitely cheaper than items at home and decor stores. Simple as that.

 

So those are my tips for today! I am planning on adding on to this list in a future blog post, so keep an eye out for that. I hope everyone has had a wonderful week so far and that you’ve been extremely blessed throughout the month of June. Happy Tuesday!

 

~Exodus 14:14 – The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.~

-H-