Kicking Bad Habits

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Ok it's confession time: I have a slew of bad habits. Not just one or two that you can chock up to being busy, but several really bad habits that I am dying to change. I'm sure you have all seen those hashtag challenges, The Everygirl and 100 Happy Days are popular ones, and they got me thinking. Could making a big deal of changing or shifting behavior work for even simple everyday tasks? I'd like to find out. I've often heard it takes about 28 days to effect habitual change, so I have the month of September to see if I can make the changes stick. So in the spirit of transparency and starting fresh (the adult version of back to school), I wanted to share with you my bad habits, and how I would like to change them.  

Bad Habit #1 : I struggle to put clothes away and at times leave them on the floor.

I am not a dirty person, let's make that clear. However, I tend to get my head caught up my ass and ignore the fact that with exception of underwear, I have thrown two days worth of clothes off to the other side of the room. This unkempt pile should not be welcome in my bedroom. So while it's simple and very basic, my goal is to put away my clothes each day. Whether that is going into the hamper, being hung up or folded, there should be no clothes on the floor...PERIOD. I'm going to piggyback on this goal again with organizing my very large walk-in closet so that getting dressed is easier, I know what I actually have, and I can asses what I need and need to get rid of.

Bad Habit #2 : I go stretches of time without any kind of exercise.

If this was the only thing I stuck to, this entire experiment will be a win. This is just plain bad for me. It's bad for my health, it's bad for my mood, and it's plain awful for my body. There really is no excuse not to get moving for at least 30 minutes a day if not more. A walk, a workout DVD, a class is really all it takes. I have a gym in my building I have never been in and they have tv's on the machine, that's pathetic. In short, I need to move my ass. While I'm at it I want to set a goal of not only moving each day, but also taking time each day to stretch. As a former dancer and cheerleader, it's shameful where my range of motion is lately. I'm about as agile as Chris Farley in Tommy Boy, and yes I wish I was kidding. So some kind of exercise (walks for the days I don't workout) and stretching daily.

Bad Habit #3 : I eat carbs (not the great kind) at almost every meal.

Look I am not a champion of low carb, no carb, or anything like it, but I do know I cannot eat starchy carbs at every meal and think I'm going to see change. I can eat all the kale in the world, but it won't matter when it comes to starch. I know carbs are a trigger for me, and that I have literal carb addiction. Going cold turkey won't work, so it needs to be minimized. No carb 3-a-days. Preferably lay off starchy carbs in the evening, and when I can't or simply don't want to avoid them make sure I remember that for the rest of my meals. Like I said I am never giving up carbs, but I need to curb those babies in a serious way.

Bad Habit #4 : I go to bed very often without taking off my makeup/washing my face.

Yep, this one is gross. I don't know any reason other than sheer laziness for this one, but it's pretty rare that I take time at night to care for my skin and yet I bitch about blemishes and skin issues. This is a simple fix with an even easier back up. I'd like to take 5-10 minutes a night and devote them to taking care of my skin. Cleansing, treating, whatever I need, and for the nights when that's too much then at least use disposable face cleansing cloths. I am also going to piggyback on this and say that I should be cleaning my makeup brushes/Clarisonic weekly. 

Bad Habit #5: I put my hair through a hot, chemical shit storm on the regular.

Yes my dear readers, I am a bottle blonde. I am a colored, bleached, flat ironed, hot mess. I coat my scalp in dry shampoo just so I can wash my hair every other day, which has been a savior but causes MAJOR buildup. I blow dry and straighten my hair which you know is f*cking awful for it too. The reality is I am not going to stop coloring my hair or styling it with heat. This means I need to take some extra care of my locks. This is another easy one, but I NEED to start using a weekly hair masque and deep conditioning treatment, along with some sort of heat protection product. I am so lucky my hair doesn't look like shredded wheat, but I won't always be. The time is now!

This should be no surprise to you, but I have a few other bad habits. I want to set myself up for success, so I am trying to be realistic about changes I want to make and not bite off more than I can chew. So if you are feeling brave, inspired, or can just commiserate with my less than stellar habits, leave a comment. It's always nice to know that other people don't have it as together as they appear to on Instagram!

image via

Weekend Links: Labor Day Sales

Friday, August 29, 2014

It's finally Fri-Yay (are you guys sick of that yet?!?)! I am so looking forward to a long, lazy weekend. This Friday's links is all about the great sales going on for labor day. So get ready to shop because there are some amazing deals out there!

Anthropologie is having 20% off sale items 

Baublebar is offering 50% off select styles

Take 30% off all full priced styles at C.Wonder

Enjoy 40% off final sale items at J.Crew

Take an amazing 40-60% off everything in stores and online at J.Crew Factory

Don't miss 50% off new fall styles at Loft

Get 15% off everything at Furbish Studio with code ENDOFSUMMER

Up to 40-50% everything at Old Navy

Enjoy the long weekend, and I apologize in advance to your credit cards. xx

Easy Healthy Recipe Roundup

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Today I wanted to share some of my favorite simple and healthy recipes. We are all busy, all the time. It's really easy to get home and nuke something, order take out, or just eat cereal (I am guilty of all of these things). But when I take the time to do a tiny bit of planning, and realize that cooking a good meal doesn't have to be a daunting task, the process becomes so much more enjoyable. Personally, I like cooking especially when I have something really good to look forward to. Note: I have made all of these recipes during the week when I have gotten home from work so they are all manageable I promise. Also they are all Weight Watchers friendly and boyfriend approved!

It's no secret I love Natalie's recipes, and this one is a real winner. I had never made meatballs before, but since making these I have made them several times. You can sub lean ground turkey if you cannot find chicken, I have done both and they come out great.

I love this recipe for when I am trying to ease up on the carbs. This carb addict doesn't even miss the bread. They hit all the right flavor notes and they are a real bang for your calorie buck.

I actually never knew I was capable of being a salad addict, but this salad changed my mind. FYI I am too lazy most of the time to make my own dressing so I use a light caesar and measure out a little bit and toss it into the salad really well. I do make my own croutons, with whatever I have around (Fiber One bread, sourdough, etc) and to make it a full meal I will toss some grilled chicken or shrimp on top.

First, you know I love Gina's recipes and cannot wait for her cookbook to come out. Whenever we make chili there is always tons leftover. This recipe is so comforting and filling and when I have leftover chili around, it comes together quite easily (also don't be afraid to use premade from your grocery store just adjust nutrition content if you are counting).

Yup another recipe from Natalie. I tried this on a whim after we have been ordering Chinese way too often. It is in full rotation now and I always have the ingredients on hand. It's easy, spicy, and makes great leftover lunches. I serve it over jasmine rice from Trader Joe's or brown rice, use super lean beef, and throw in raw asparagus or broccoli while it simmers. 

Yes, sometimes I just want a big bowl of brussel sprouts (but I will typically have some protein too just because it's the right thing to do). They are delicious, versatile, and very filling. I mix up my recipe from time to time. Sometimes I will add some thick cut bacon, truffle oil, parmesan, etc. The combinations are endless.

Old faithful or my anytime meal, Avocado Toast

If you have ever seen my Instagram, you can see that I love avocado toast. It's so simple and delicious I just never tire of it. There is no recipe link for this because all I do is mash half an avocado with sea salt and red pepper flakes, slather it on your toast of choice (I highly recommend sourdough), top with more salt and pepper flakes, et voila best easy meal ever!

Now it's your turn. What are some of your favorite, healthy meals you make after work? I am always looking for new ones to try!

Loyal Follower

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Instead of creating my weekly "On My Radar" post highlighting my wishlist items, I though I would share the things I buy time and time again. When it comes to skincare, I will always restock Mario Badescu's Drying Lotion and Fresh's Sugar Lip Treatment when I run out. Broken record here, but Drybar's Detox dry shampoo is purchased every few weeks without fail (it really has changed my life). I'm an Apple loyalist and yes I'll be purchasing the iPhone 6 this fall no matter how "cool" Droids become. I've gone through several Longchamp bags over the years and I still love their bigger totes as a carryall, you can fit so much and they are extremely light. Every few years I get a new pair of aviators (prescription) and use they them daily. While I love statement jewelry, you'll most likely find me with my tiny gold chain bracelet and small pendant necklace on over anything else. Last, but certainly not least, ballet flats. I live in these shoes and like to have multiple pairs to rotate.

What are some of your can't live without items? It's so interesting to find out what others categorize as must haves!


Back to Cool

Monday, August 25, 2014

Just because you aren't going back to school doesn't mean you can't indulge in your love for office supplies. Above are a few desk stapled for the stylish gal that appreciates a put together work space. Say goodbye to boring desk accouterments and say hello to beautiful, functional pieces.


Weekend + Links

Friday, August 22, 2014

I am writing this as I head out the door to go visit my little sister in Charlotte. For once I think I didn't over pack which is shocking. I am looking forward to hanging out with her and her fiance, finally trying Tupelo Honey Cafe, and yes Zaxby's. Let's get to the links!

As per usual I have fallen in love with another Drybar product. This one is a texturizer, volumizer, and dry shampoo all in one! Flat hair girls rejoice!

Saw this recipe for Momofuku Milk Bar's Crack Pie and had to share as these puppies retail for over $40! Save it for someone special because it takes a bagillion steps.

Tag this under first world problems, but I have the hardest time pairing throw pillows. This nifty guide will show you pairings for every style.

Not exactly ready to succumb to the pumpkin spice latte just yet? Try this instead to get you in a fall-like mood.

I needed this DIY in my life so so bad. Time to get artsy folks!

Not making it to the beach, the cape, or Nantucket for labor day? No problem. Your one pot clambake coming right up!

And because no weekend is complete without a cocktail, here is the at home version of one of my favorite drinks ever from Charleston's Husk restaurant "Dragoon's Punch." This tea based cocktail is out of this world!

Have an amazing weekend loves, see you Monday! xx

High Style, Low Cost

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

pillow // coral // vase // tray table // throw // candlestick // jars

Thanks to places like H&M and Zara you can now get some very stylish home decor at budget prices. A few of my favorite pieces are pictured above. All are super versatile and could fit in with different styles and color palettes. What are some of your favorite places (besides Home Goods) to find great home pieces on a budget? I'd love to know!