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Soaking Up Your Travel Experience: 5 Ways to Stay in the Moment
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Soaking Up Your Travel Experience: 5 Ways to Stay in the Moment

This past weekend I took a mini-vacation to Newport Beach (about an hour and a half from where I am in LA) and it was much, much needed. It was nice to be so close to home, yet far enough away to feel like I get to explore somewhere new.

Over Thanksgiving just a few days ago, my family and I were talking about how people don’t take the time to be fully present in the experiences they’re in. All too often we see the person in front of us at a concert who won’t put their phone down and just listen. Just take in the moment that they’re in. Taking this little “staycation” was a little reminder to soak up my experiences, even if I’m close to home.

Soaking up Your Travel Experience: 5 Ways to Stay in the Moment

It doesn’t have to be an international vacation to make you stop and notice how great life is. Soak up your friends, the laughter, the music, the sunshine, whatever it is just soak it up.

Here are 5 ways you can stay in the moment and take time to be grateful for this life we have.

  1. Plan ahead. I thought about this and it could go either way. Maybe staying spontaneous makes you feel more free, but my thought is that if you plan ahead you won’t have a need to be on your phone. Let’s face it, we use our phones for everything. We Yelp the best nearby restaurants, we Waze our routes, we Google what to do, etc. Planning ahead could keep your phone in your pocket a little longer.
  2. Put your phone away. You probably saw this one coming. I’m a fan of capturing the moment don’t get me wrong! But snap a picture at the beginning of dinner (or at the end) or get a quick photo of that beautiful sunset and then just take time to actually enjoy it. Just like the concert thing I mentioned above, we get so concerned with showing everyone that we’re watching an amazing sunset, before we know it the sun has set and we can’t recall any of the details.
  3. Inhale positivity, exhale negativity. Focus on the present instead of worrying about the future. Have you ever been somewhere trying to relax and you keep thinking about your to-do list? Or stressing over something that doesn’t matter? I do that a lot. When I’m trying to be in the moment, I have to just take a deep breathe and not care. If it won’t matter in the next 5 years, don’t spend 5 minutes of your life thinking about it.
  4. I know I said plan ahead…but to a certain extent. I’ve found one of the best ways to truly be in the moment and soak up my travel experience is to get lost with the people I’m with doing something really fun and having a great time. Just like when you get lost creating something you love, or how I get lost writing something I get into that flow state and lose track of time. You can still plan ahead what you’ll do but no one needs an itinerary.
  5. Be open to exploration. Not only within the environment you’re in depending where you’ve traveled to, but be open to discovering a side of yourself you didn’t know existed or to doing something you didn’t think you’d want to do. Don’t force anything, but if you have the urge to do zip-lining and it’s available, why not! There’s nothing that forces you into the moment than doing something that scares you just a little.
  6. Okay here’s a bonus one: stop and take it in. An exercise I’ve done for writing in the past is to take a walk up the street and write down every single sound you hear. What’s crazy is you don’t realize all the individual sounds until you list them. The birds chirping, your shoes on the pavement, the leaves in the trees, cars driving down the street, dogs barking in the distance, you get the idea! Try doing this mentally on your next trip. Just stop and list everything you see and hear. It might sound weird but this truly gets you in the moment and I guarantee you’ll be able to go back to that moment in your mind because you were so present and mindful.

What do you find are the best ways to stay present? Tell me in the comments below!

Reflecting on my birthday: 24 lessons in 24 years
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Reflecting on my 24th birthday: 24 lessons I’ve learned

I remember thinking on my 22nd birthday that I was finally getting older, “but imagine what 24 will feel like.” For some reason 24 sounds so much older! There’s a younger feeling about being 21, 22, or even 23. But despite all that I am EMBRACING 24 and I’m the kind of person that feels like everything gets better with age!

Well Scorpio season is among us! Scorpios are known to be the most “secretive” of the signs, and while I don’t like to spill my heart out completely on the internet I do love myself a good deep conversation (or in this case, blog post). I thought it would be fun to reflect on some simple lessons I’ve learned in my 24 years of life. Comment below and tell me if you can relate to any of these life lessons!

  1. Sometimes something we didn’t think we wanted turns out to be the greatest gift.Funny story to start this out: my brother was born premature and my parents spent weeks with him in the hospital. I was used to being the only child so when they finally brought him home I said, “I don’t like him. Can you take him back?” Well, flash forward 22 years and he’s pretty great if I do say so!
  2. Don’t be afraid to fail. In this interview, my good friend Lexy said she feels like failure doesn’t exist and rather everything is just a learning curve. I love that.
  3. Be kind, be mindful of what you say to others, be humble, be a nice person. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” –Maya Angelou. Sometimes I haven’t forgotten what hurtful things people have said to me. And I don’t doubt that I’ve said something that hurt someone. But if we can be more mindful of how we come off to people, of how our words or actions affect people, I think we should try our hardest. Being nice doesn’t make you naïve, fake, or a pushover, it just means you care how you make other people feel.
  4. It’s okay if you realize people don’t have a place in your life anymore. This has been a huge learning lesson for me over the years. I always felt a personal conflict with issues like this; wanting to be nice and not hurt anyone, yet also staying true to myself in knowing that someone doesn’t align with who I am as a person. Follow that inner voice. You might make mistakes, but everyday things will become more and more clear
  5. Take time to be interested in your Grandparents and spend time with them. They’re gone sooner than we think. My Grandma passed away a few months ago, and that marks the last living grandparent I had. I deeply cherished every one of my grandparents and I only wish I had more time to spend with my Mom’s parents who passed away when I was much younger. See you on the other side.
  6. Hustle with heart…but not always. Taking time to pause and reflect is often just as powerful as being busy.
  7. Follow your heart. I’ve always been a firm believer of this when navigating life, careers, love, friendships, you name it. Don’t let the pessimists get to you. Doing what’s right isn’t always easy and what’s easy isn’t always right but your heart will help you navigate that. I find that somewhere along the line your heart and your mind work together.
  8. Preserve your memories. Keep a journal, print out your photos and put them in an album, take video! I’ve learned too many times that technology is temporary and photos and videos get lost along the way. In a way, our own memory is temporary too. I recently realized that gone are the days when people walk around with the big hefty home video cameras and that makes me a little sad. No one is truly preserving the videos they take. I don’t know about you but I want to look back on my life when I’m 90.
  9. Be a rebel, take chances, create your own path. In 2012 I Facebook messaged Drake Doremus who directed one of my favorite all-time movies that made me want to be an actress and writer/director called Like Crazy. I asked him some advice and he gave me the most honest answers I will always remember. Here’s exactly what he said in response, caps and all. “WATCH A LOT OF MOVIES AND FOLLOW YOUR HEART. DON’T TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER AND DO WHATEVER YOU WANT ALWAYS. BE A REBEL.” Thanks for responding to a random stranger, Drake.
  10. Sometimes figuring out what you DON’T want to do can you lead you to clarity for your true purpose. During my first year of college I was still getting clear on what I really wanted to do in life. It was a time of change and growth and coming into who I was as a person. I still felt mildly embarrassed to admit that I wanted to act and I hid behind my love for writing. I ended up doing an internship at Warner Brothers for MadChance Productions and it was a great experience. It taught me so much and oddly enough I learned so much about what I definitely didn’t want to do. I did not want to be a producer’s assistant and sacrifice my soul. I did not want to be a script supervisor or editor or PA etc. the list goes on. However, one night when I got the chance to be a PA on set I learned that it would kill me if I didn’t take the chance to act. I remember looking at the actors while I was a PA and thinking, “I would give anything to trade places with you right now.” It hit me like a ton of bricks that it would be sad if I lived my whole life with that feeling and vowed not to do that.
  11. It’s okay to be both introverted and extroverted. I like to go out and have drinks with my friends and be social but I also really like being alone and making lists and reading a good book. Don’t feel like you have to fit a mold of anything or anyone, just be yourself.
  12. Be mindful of who and what you put your energy into. If it’s not being reciprocated or you feel like it adds negativity to your life, let it go.
  13. The sound of your dogs snoring will make everything fade to the background. Really, what’s better than coming home and snuggling up to my dogs and hearing them sleep so soundly. (cheesy, I know. But 100% the truth).
  14. Study your craft diligently, be driven, have laser focus. The people that do this, no matter what industry you’re in, are already a step ahead of those who put half effort into things.
  15. Social media is not real life. I’ll say it again…SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT REAL LIFE. (check out this video that explains this perfectly). Man, social media is such a love hate thing for me. I know we’ve all had our days when we wish we had what was on the other side of the screen. But remind yourself that 9/10 what’s on the other side of that screen looks a whole lot different in real life. I still believe that social media can be used for positive things, but I’ve learned to check myself in the comparison game online.
  16. Don’t be afraid to be ahead of the game. I’ve always had that entrepreneurial spirit about me (and I’m sure so many of you reading this do, too!) I started my Etsy shop back in 2013 and no one my age was really doing that. Not because they couldn’t but I just think no one my age really had an interest in doing that at the time. Part of me felt embarrassed to talk about the fact I had an Etsy shop at that time and I’ve learned it’s okay to stand out of the crowd. Be confident in your ventures.
  17. Just begin. The hardest part about doing the work is just sitting down and starting.
  18. Actions speak louder than words. Plain and simple.
  19. Anxiety can be paralyzing. I’ve struggled a lot with anxiety over the past couple years. I don’t have many answers here, but I’ve learned to breathe and look at the bigger picture.
  20. Deep conversations are the best way to connect with someone. I don’t know if I’ve learned this or if I was born this way but Lord knows I love to have deep conversations with people. Deep, meaning more than small talk. What makes you tick, what do you dream about, what do you think shaped you into who you are, etc. So if you’re ever having a day when you want to talk, head over to Instagram and you know where to find me!
  21. Speak with confidence about what you love. I wrote an entire blog post on this and it’s really a huge lessons I’ve learned over the years.
  22. Going out of your comfort zone helps you grow as a person. It can be as simple as going up to someone at an event and having a conversation, or joining a new community, or applying for a new job. That little pang of fear or sickness you feel when you’re doing something new…you’re growing! I wrote a blog post about how joining this network of women helped me out of my comfort zone and truly helped me grow as a person.
  23. True friendships are hard to come by. True friendships are a two way street, not one a one lane highway. They are empathetic, they care deeply about you just as you do for them, they never let anything get in the way, they love you for you. Remember, quality over quantity. I look at some of the friendships I’ve had for over 10 years and there’s nothing like a love for a person like that.
  24. You can’t control what will happen in your life. This is something I still struggle with all the time. I worry about the “what ifs” and it’s a constant reminder that I have to give up control and focus only on the factors I can control.
holiday gift guide made to create coffee mug
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Rising Tide Society Holiday Gift Guide: Handmade & Small Business

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook you know that I’ve been posting all about this amazing gift guide from the Rising Tide Society! If you haven’t heard of the Rising Tide Society before they’re an amazing community of small business owners, makers, artists, creators, entrepreneurs, DREAMERS of all kinds! It was started by the amazing photographer Natalie Franke and transformed into a place where people can go for support for their business, to learn more about navigating entrepreneurship and so much more. You can read more about RTS here.

This year they put out an amazing holiday gift guide (no fluff here it really is awesome) and I was lucky enough to have some of the products from my shop featured. I thought it would be super fun to show y’all some of my favorites! I am not joking when I say this guide takes the stress out of finding truly unique gifts for your friends and family! Take a look and browse some of my favorites below and be sure to comment and tell me what you love! P.S. Make sure you SUBSCRIBE to the newsletter when you click on the guide and you’ll get discount shops for SO many of the shops, it’s worth it!

Gifts For Coffee Lovers 

“Roasted” Themed Gift Box from Postcard Pantry                      Made to Create Coffee Mug (by yours truly!)

holiday gift guide made to create coffee mug

 

Hygge Knit Coffee Cup Sweater by Swell Knits.                        Coffee Mocha Handmade Natural Vegan Soap

coffee mug sweater holiday gift

 

coffee lover soap

Gifts For the Romantic 

You are Loved Pillow by Swell                                                            Isn’t She Lovely Fabric Sign by SweetGrass Paper Co.

 

You Will Forever Be My Always Postcard/Love Note (Me, again!).       Customized Gold Circle Necklace by StampedandFinch

stamped necklace holiday gift guide

It Is Well With My Soul Hand Painted Globe                                            Floral Initial Watercolor Ring Dish

holiday gift guide

holiday gift guide

Gifts For The Home

Custom Watercolor Map.                                                                              Mini Modern Succulent Planter Set 

custom watercolor map holiday gift guide

succulent set holiday gift guide

 

Springtime Bouquet Painting by Amanda Christine.                                        Home Sweet Home Laser Cut Sign
Painting Holiday Gift Guidehome decor holiday gift guide

So Many Books Bookends

Book Lover gift Guide

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gifts For the Entrepreneur Woman

You Got This Notepad.                                                                           Double Sided LetterChalk Board
Gift Ideas for Entrepreneurletter board for artists

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be With: Affirm Cards for Self Love                                                         Cultivate What Matters Intentional Goal Planner

Affirm Cards Gift Guide

holiday gift guide entrepreneur planner

Just Begin Canvas Pencil Pouch

canvas pencil pouch holiday gift guide

fallskincareroutine
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Fall Skincare Routine

Ever since I was little I had the skincare/makeup love gene. I’m the kind of person who absolutely has to take my makeup off before I go to bed and there’s nothing I hate more than dry skin. I love trying new products to see what work best (and also what’s not really makin’ the cut). So, I thought it would be fun to show you all my fall skincare routine and the products I’m currently loving! I could write a long post on my all-time favorites but I wanted to narrow it down and show you my fall favorites and my routine.

My Routine + Products

What I’m telling you is typically what I do in the morning or at night, so this doesn’t really include makeup, except for a tinted moisturizer.

fallskincareroutine

Morning Face Wash

In the morning, I usually wash my face or wipe it clean with the Kirkland Signature Daily Facial Towellettes. Facewash is the one thing not shown in the pictures because I took these photos while on my trip and I didn’t bring what I normally use. If I use a face wipe, I actually love the Costco ones. I’ve tried other brands like Neutrogena but most wipes make my skin too oily or they sting. Typically I use the CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser because it’s great for sensitive skin and has hyaluronic acid in it. I also really like The Body Shop Vitamin C Daily Glow Facial Cleansing Polish Face Scrub. It makes my skin so bright and refreshed. I got it last year on sale during Black Friday and that was a great decision haha it lasted me SO long too!

Morning Moisturizer

My skin always feels so much dryer this time of year so moisturizer is essential. Next, I put moisturizer on and I’ve been loving this Better Skin Mirakle Cream I first tried this product when I went to BeautyCon earlier this year and loved it! I would not say that unless I meant it and let me tell you, this truly feels like butter slathered on your face. They were kind enough to send me these products because they know how much I love them! Go try them for yourself, you’ll see what I mean!

SPF for the day

Then, before applying makeup like concealer or foundation I make sure to get some SPF on. I think moisturizer and SPF is the secret to great skin. My friends make fun of me because I am the SPF freak always telling people to wear sunscreen but the sun is an invisible damager! You don’t see the negative effects sun damage has on skin until about 20 years later (or so I’ve read). Anyways, I’ve been loving a tinted SPF/Moisturizer lately and this Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer is great! It’s definitely tinted and a little goes a long way but it’s a great base with the added plus of SPF. The Cotz Face Natural Skin Tone SPF 40 I also tried at BeautyCon and I found my new favorite face sunscreen! Think of whipped butter, and that’s what feels like is going on your face. It blends into the skin great and it’s perfect for pre-makeup.

fallskincareroutine

Nighttime Routine

At the end of the day, I always take my makeup off and wash my face. I use the same wipes and/or face wash. At night time, I also like to do an occasional face mask or scrub. I really like Better Skin Lava Magik – Cleanser – Scrub – Mask, which you can use as a scrub or mask. Here’s my experience with it: I loved it as a scrub, I felt like I had baby soft skin afterward. As a mask, not so much. I have really sensitive skin and my face felt a burning sensation after keeping the mask on for just a few minutes. The lava mask is also red in nature, so it might look like it stains your skin momentarily even though it doesn’t. That was just my experience so I’m not sure how your skin will react but do love these products overall.

I love the PCA SKIN Après Peel Hydrating Balm for nighttime. I’ve been switching off between this and the Mirakle Cream but either are super moisturizing! In the photo, this moisturizer is in a little travel container, but it comes in a much larger one when you buy it. It also smells amazing!

Next, I do some spot treatment if I have any breakouts and here are my go-tos for that this fall season. Epiduo is amazing for drying out a zit when needed. I found out about this through my dermatologist and I’ve used it for a while now! Now, for my secret weapon. On my trip to Oahu this past summer, I came across this Hawaiian Healer Salve. The girl in the shop (my favorite local store in Kailua) said it was a miracle salve and she swears by it. She said it makes scars fade, breakouts vanish, etc. She raved about it! I thought I would give it a go, but wasn’t holding my breath. Oh my goodness you guys! It really is magical! I will put this on my breakouts and I wake up the next day and my skin looks almost perfect! It’s all natural and also doubles as a great chapstick. P.S. this would make the perfect stocking stuffer for a friend or loved one! Whether it’s your best girlfriend or even your brother, definitely get this salve!

That’s it for my fall skincare routine! If you’re interested in me going a bit further and showing you my go-to makeup products for fall be sure to comment and let me know below! Any other questions and feel free to reach out! What are your favorite skincare products right now?

nostalgia and wanderlust
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Nostalgia For The Familiar: An Unexpected Gift in the Midst of Wanderlust

The first thing that always hits me when I travel back to the south, where my Mom and her family is from, is how much I miss my grandparents. I spend weeks, sometimes even months, preparing for the trip so excited to explore new things and places I hadn’t been to in years past. I gear up knowing it will be a totally different experience now that I’m older each time. And yes it is different, because each time I have a deeper appreciation for my grandparents and family, for the time we did get to spend together when I was younger, and for the foundation they built our family on.

I always expect to miss them when I’m back in the south, especially in South Carolina, but I never realize how much until it smacks me in the face. I thought I was craving adventure and exploration of somewhere new, but when we arrive in their city, in their same home, I don’t realize how much nostalgia I feel for their familiar faces, their voices, their laughter until I’m standing in it.

This time in the midst of exploring a new city, Asheville, I stumbled upon something (or rather someone) so unexpected but so fitting. At the bed and breakfast we stayed at they had “social hour” every evening from 4-6. Usually a good group of visitors would come to mingle and talk with everyone. We ended up meeting this older adorable and super sweet couple from Florida. Their presence was magnetizing because of their love for travel and adventure and because of the visible love they had for each other. In SO many ways, they reminded me of my own grandparents. It’s funny how certain things or people fill the gaps you feel in life sometimes. Nothing will ever replace my own grandparents or their love, but having this couple who was so interested in my life and goals and unbelievably encouraging made me smile.

The takeaway is, it’s funny what we find when we think we’re out there searching for something different. I ended up finding a familiar feeling I missed in an entirely new place.

Thank you for that little surprising gift, world.

wanderlust postcard

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changing leaves in Asheville and Lulu's Cardigan
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Changing Leaves in Asheville + The Softest Lulu’s Cardigan

My Mom and I took a southern fall trip back to Columbia, SC to visit my Uncle and then we drove a couple hours to Asheville, NC! I had never been there before and it’s been years since my Mom or Uncle went so we made the drive! We couldn’t wait to see the changing leaves and soak up every moment of the fall season in the south!

First, I will say that I was so happy to experience a crisp fall! It was in the hundreds when we left Los Angeles, so it was drastically different weather haha. Just a week prior in South Carolina it has been so hot though, we actually didn’t think it was going to be cold at all and we were a little bummed. When we got to Asheville though it was only about 50 something degrees! I wished I had packed a few more warmer clothing options but I was so happy it was cold enough to feel all warm and snuggled up.

We only spent 48 hours there and I’d love to do a trip itinerary if you guys are interested! We loved our bed and breakfast that we stayed in and I have so many cute pictures of the place!

Our second day in Asheville, we drove up the Blue Ridge Mountain to see some of the leaves. I’ll be honest with you…it was a little disappointing. The leaves weren’t as popping with color as they’d been in years past and the visitor’s center people confirmed this. They actually said on a scale of 1 to 10 as far as leaf color goes, this year was at a low 3 haha. But I will say, there were patches that we caught along the way driving through the Blue Ridge and it really was breath taking because we just don’t get that color here but it came in waves. The few pictures of the beautiful leaves I got were gorgeous and I wanted to stand there all day looking at the view. When we did get out to take some pictures, it was freezing. My fingers were numb trying to press the button on my camera but it was worth it!

changing leaves in Asheville

changing leaves in Asheville

changing leaves in Asheville

The Softest Lulu’s Sweater Hoodie Cardigan: Perfect for Fall!

I got this cardigan from Lulu’s in early October I believe and showed it on Instagram! I had no idea when I was going to get to wear it because it had been so hot I would have been sweating wearing it anywhere in California. I’m so glad I brought it on this trip though, it couldn’t have been more perfect! The material is SO soft and cozy and it’s pretty thick. I love that there are pockets which was nice to stick my hands in when we walked around town. The hood on this sweater cardigan is also so cute and different than just your plain jane cardigan.

changing leaves in Asheville and Lulu's Cardigan

changing leaves in Asheville

Enjoy the fall leaves and stay tuned for more from this trip!

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The Perfect Carry-On Bag + What’s In My Carry-On

I get sort of romantic about traveling. Really, I do. Traveling to me is like adding another color onto my canvas and treating my life like art. It’s filling up my cup a little more. It’s broadening my horizons. I always come back from a trip feeling renewed and with a newfound sense of understanding about something.

But before anything too revolutionary can happen, we have to worry about what to pack in our carry-on. I’ve become a carry-on packer pro of sorts, I even traveled to Switzerland for almost two weeks with just a carry-on (crazy, I know). But I wanted to show you guys what I pack in my personal carry-on bag (the one under my seat on the plane) and show you the inspiring tote bag that’s up in my shop that I am obsessed with! The quote says, “She turned her cant’s into cans and her dreams into plans.”  This could not be a more perfect travel tote. How many times have you told yourself you’ll go to that dream destination you’ve had in your head? This is all about just doing it. Stop thinking about traveling somewhere and make. It. Happen. You can shop this bag here.

Now, what’s in my carry-on? Click the photo above to shop (some) of the items on liketoknowit or you can also shop everything via the links below if you’re interested.

 

  1. My laptop. I recently had to upgrade laptops because my other one was from 2011 and it would take me 2.5 hours to do something as simple as open a word document haha. I have the 2014 Macbook Pro now and love this one, it goes everywhere with me.
  2. Laptop soft cover case from Etsy. The cutest cover case that prevents my laptop from getting scratched. It has pockets in front too so I conveniently keep all my pens in there, because I’m a pen nerd.
  3. My Planner. Type-A over here, so yes this goes with me when I travel. Especially if I’m getting some work done while I’m traveling I like that I still have my calendar there or to make to-do lists in. I’m a fan of larger planners and this one is very similar (same brand).
  4. My obsession with notebooks is a slight problem, but when I travel I try to keep it simple. I like just a regular school-style notebook so that I have lots of room to write everything I need. Whether I’m taking a break from my laptop and writing down blog ideas in here, making lists, taking notes on a podcast I’m listening to, or jotting down ideas for my next script, a notebook goes where I go.
  5. The 7-year pen. I wrote about this pen in my September Favorites post, but this is the best pen I’ve ever owned. I’m going to Asheville on this trip and that’s where the store is so I cannot wait to spend too much money there!
  6. Currently have The Nightingale with me (so excited to read it!) but I also have a book on writing subtext in screenwriting with me and my Your Best Year 2018 workbook too.
  7. I really don’t like that Apple keeps changing the headphone ports so now I take headphones that can easily plug into my laptop and ones that can go into my iphone too. Here are the headphones I have.
  8. Sunglasses and glasses. I’m a creature of habit in the sunglasses department and I’ve had this style of Ray-Bans for years. It’s a winner in my book. My glasses are necessary for distance. So, if you ever see me and it seems like I’m looking at you but I don’t say anything…it’s because I am blind haha. This happens to me all the time, it’s bad. At the gym, at the store. I should probably get contacts honestly. The pair I have are also Raybans and I got them at Lenscrafters.
  9. I am a snacker if there ever was one. I always need to have snacks on me or I reach a level of starvation and can’t function. Besides what’s seen in this photo, I also took a few more snacks and tried to keep it as healthy as possible. I don’t like feeling like a blog after eating airport food all day, but hey it happens sometimes. On this trip I also took Justin’s Snack Pack Almond Butter With Pretzels, a small Ziploc bag of Trader Joe’s Organic Popcorn with Olive Oil, an orange, a ThinkThin Oatmeal Individuals (6 Count) for in the morning (so I wouldn’t spend 1 million dollars at Starbucks in the airport) and this time my Mom and I took it a little far. We also got our favorite vegetable rice bowl from Aroma Coffee & Tea Company in Studio City the night before and took it as our lunch. I also take my own Jasmine Green Tea tea bag so if I’m on the plane I can have a pick me up instead of coffee if I’m feeling something different.
  10. My HydroFlask . I don’t leave without it. It keeps my water SO cold (or my coffee super hot) and I’d rather drink out of this than plastic water bottles if I can help it!
  11. Advil/Excedrin. I get really bad headaches and sometimes migraines. At times they can get so bad that any sound or bright light is excruciating pain. I try not to take these a lot, but if my headache is that bad while traveling I just want it to end.
  12. Beauty: I pack my makeup bag in my suitcase, but I usually have a few things to freshen up with if I’m going somewhere straight from the airport. This time I took my L’Oréal Paris True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup, N4 Buff Beige, 1 fl. oz., NYX Butter Gloss PRALINE, Bobbi Brown Telluride Shimmer Brick Compact – Sunset Pink, Costco Kirkland Signature Daily Facial Towellettes, 4.53 Pound, and Jergens Shea Butter Deep Conditioning Moisturizer 3 oz (Pack of 2).
  13. A sweater. I get cold very easily and I always find myself freezing on planes, so this is a must for me. This sweater cardigan is comfortable yet warm enough to snuggle up in. Here is a similar one.

So by now you’re probably thinking that’s way too much and yes my bag does weigh a lot haha but I am the kind of person that would so much rather have the option of having something than being disappointed that I didn’t bring an item. What’s in your carry-on that I should know about?

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Fall Reading List: 6 Books to Read for Every Mood You’re In

You all know I love writing and journaling but I’m a book nerd too! Every morning and night I get some reading in, even if it’s only a few pages. This is more a dream fall reading list of all the books I wish I had time to read more than a definitive MUST READ during October and November. I thought I would start making reading lists every season because I discover so many amazing authors and books I want to read every week it’s hard to keep up with it all. While I know I won’t get to this whole list during the fall months alone, I hope I can read them all eventually!

  1. When you feel like rooting for someone:

    The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah. This novel has been on my reading list for a while and I physically have the book, but have yet to dive into it. I’ve heard so many amazing things about this book. It sounds like a real page-turner and I already know I’ll be so invested in these characters and can’t wait to find out what happens!

To sum it up: “It tells the story of two sisters in France on the eve of World War II, and their struggle to survive and resist the German occupation of France.”

  1. When you feel like organizing your life and getting rid of the noise (inside and out):

    The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. The first time this book got put onto my mental must-read list, I heard about it on a podcast. It goes SO much deeper than just cleaning out your closet and really gets down to the nitty gritty. The podcast I listened to also talked about how it explained a little bit of why we hold onto things or people.

To sum it up: “With detailed guidance for every type of item in the household, this quirky little manual from Japan’s newest lifestyle phenomenon will help readers clear their clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home–and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.”

  1. When you’re in that marketing mood:

    The 10X Rule by Grant Cardone. I should probably make an entire list on marketing books to read because I have looooong list but this is definitely at the top. I am always looking to better myself and my business and reading books like this if anything give me a different perspective. I love knowing what makes people tick, what has made their businesses successful, and the journey they took to get there so this book is right up my alley.

To sum it up:  “To reach the next level, you must understand the coveted 4th degree of action. This 4th degree, also know as the 10 X Rule, is that level of action that guarantees companies and individuals realize their goals and dreams.”

  1. When you’re still in that marketing mood:

    Your Best Year 2018 by Lisa Jacobs. Sorry I had to add in one more! For years now I’ve been watching Lisa come out with a bigger, badder, better edition of this book but I finally just said, “what am I waiting for?!” and I can’t wait to get through this whole book! She is a marketing genius, especially for bloggers or those with a product shop of sorts. Don’t wait to get this book, you’ll want/need it for the new year!

To sum it up: “Your Best Year is a productivity workbook and online business planner designed to make your most ambitious goals come true. It is for entrepreneurs who are ready to stretch their comfort zone and make it happen already. Written by a best-selling internet entrepreneur, no better resource exists to help you make the most of your business year.”

  1. When you feel like being purposeful:

    Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist. Joanna Gaines wrote a beautiful article about the power of this book in the Magnolia Journal and every since then it’s been on my reading list. I’m all about trying to be more present, intentional, soulful, you get the picture. Hopefully I’ll get this read by the end of November!

To sum it up: “Present Over Perfect is a collection of essays that focuses on the journey from frantic and tired to connected and free. Many of us find ourselves busier than we want to be, missing the sweetest moments along the way. We end up resentful and distracted, full of regret and feeling disconnected. Present Over Perfect is a hand reaching out to a new way of living—full of grace, space, and connection.”

  1. When you feel like tapping into another world:

    The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman. I’ve heard about this book described as a dark dream you can’t help but be more and more curious about. The description alone really draws me in and to be totally honest I’m not sure if I will end up liking this book or not BUT I’m really curious to find out. I’ll keep you guys posted on what I think once I do read it!

To sum it up: “A groundbreaking work as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out.”

Are any of these books on your reading list? Tell me your must-read books this fall by commenting below, I’m always looking to add to my list!

 

6 Lessons on Entrepreneurship I learned from Family
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6 Lessons on Entrepreneurship I Learned from My Family

Entrepreneurship runs in my blood. It’s something I feel like I was born with and as I look back on the different lessons my family taught me, whether consciously or not, it’s shaped me into who I am and the way I navigate being an entrepreneur.

Fun fact: When I was 8 years old, I made holiday-themed stationary. I used paint pens and colored pencils to create cards and paper with pretty borders. I then photocopied the originals and printed out a ton. Then, I made my parents a PowerPoint presentation all about why I should be allowed to go around my neighborhood and sell this stationary. It was VERY detailed, and they got a huge kick out of it. They also agreed to my proposition. That was probably my earliest memory of being an “entrepreneur.”

Below are 6 lessons on entrepreneurship I learned from my family. Lessons I hope you can take with you and implement into your life as well. Keep reading, and I would love to hear a lesson you’ve learned too!

Lesson #1: Have a Strong Work Ethic

Maybe this is a no-brainer, but it’s easier said than done. My Grandpa Jack (my Mom’s Father) was extremely hard working. He came from the generation of folks who worked very hard at their 9-5 and he did so happily in order to provide for the family. For 30 years, he worked at the same company as an accountant and while he never went out on his own like an entrepreneur, it’s a lesson that anyone can apply to their life. He was extremely reliable, trustworthy, and so hard working he almost never took a sick day his entire time at the company. Having a strong work-ethic is essential in being an entrepreneur, because there will come times when you have to put in more hours than you’ve ever wanted to put in (no matter what you do). If you understand that, you’re in a better position to get to a place where you won’t have to do that your whole life.

Lesson #2: Have a Strong Support System

My Grandma Ettie (my Mom’s Mother, short for Esther) was the most nurturing, understanding, and supportive person you ever met. She was exactly the kind of person you’d want on your side and if there’s anything that entrepreneurship has taught me, it’s that it can sometimes be a lonely road. She was the support system to Jack and her family that everyone needs. Find someone to be “your person.” You will need them when days get tough, when you need ideas to bounce off of someone, when you have great days you want to share, and when you have breakthroughs that need nurturing. If you’ve never read The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron talks about needing a “catcher’s mitt” person. Someone to nurture your artist, to encourage you, and to support you. She also taught me to be that person for someone else and I cherish that.

Lesson #3: When You See a Need— Fill it

My uncle Mark started his own company creating first aids kits to businesses and factories.
He saw a need and filled it. He took control of his future, of his idea, and then implemented it. This is so important because often we see a need for something and even as that entrepreneurial spirit stirs inside of us, we live in fear of acting on it. He taught me that you can create your own destiny and be your own boss.

Lesson #4: Being an Entrepreneur Requires Stamina and Laser Focus

My Grandma Betty (my Dad’s Mother) came from a very very poor family in Colorado in the 1930’s. They had virtually nothing and my Grandma struggled with being seen as the incompetent girl in the eyes of her father. That really lit a fire in my Grandma to surpass everyone’s expectations and be successful. Her present didn’t look anything like the future she knew she wanted for herself, so she worked her tail off to get to where she wanted to be.

Eventually, she moved to California with her mom and brother and quit high school her sophomore year to start her own business. She had sewn some clothes here and there in the past but decided to learn everything she could about sewing, hemming, you name it. She started a business as a seamstress and realized what she needed to do to up level competition. She decided to make herself a “professional,” offering a pickup and delivery service. This made her more professional than anyone her age and in the local market. Throughout her lifetime, she had laser focus and the utmost determination to find success in the businesses she started.

Lesson #5: Believe in Yourself First

My Dad has that entrepreneurial spirit in his blood, just like his mom. His entire life he’s worked his way up from job to job, breaking into industries that didn’t even seem possible in years past. Something my Dad has taught my brother and I is that it’s so important to have confidence in yourself. You will need to take risks throughout your life and journey in your business and the only way that will be possible is if you have the confidence in yourself to do so. No one else will believe in you, if you don’t believe in yourself first. He didn’t need anyone else’s approval or validation to go after what he knew he wanted. He knew he had potential and summoned a determined force within himself to be relentless until he got to where he wanted to be. So often I talk with people who say they want to make changes in their lives or want to start a business, but they don’t go after it with confidence and that laser focus. Every day an actionable step needs to be taken. It’s easier said than done, but my Dad taught me to be driven and to go after my dreams with confidence every single day.

Lesson#6: It’s Okay to Pivot

My parents made it a priority, and had the privilege, to spend as much quality/family time with my brother and I as possible when we were little. They cared deeply about the way they raised us and I always appreciated how much emphasis they put on family time. My mom worked for many years of her life, but there came a time when she felt the need to pivot. She strongly felt the need to be home with my brother and I and what I learned is that….that’s okay. There will come a time in your life and business where you will need to shift things. Either drastically or incrementally, but it will need to be done. Welcoming that change instead of dwelling on it could be one of the most beneficial lessons you can learn. I’m so glad my Mom taught me that it’s okay to pivot and make changes or honor what you feel in your heart is the right path to take, even if it’s different than originally planned.

Many of the lessons I’ve learned I had the privilege of learning while my grandparents were still alive. Some lessons though, I really didn’t learn or even realize until long after they passed away. I’m very close with my family and even writing this post makes me so proud of my parents too. I’ve never felt more honored to be a part of this family and look back on their journey, while taking what they taught me for the road ahead on my own.

What lesson on entrepreneurship have you learned from your family? What’s something you want to start implementing into your life? Tell me below by leaving a comment, I’d love to hear from you!

Photo Credit: “Made to Create” Coffee Mug Photo by Hannah Robinson. Coffee Mug by Me, find it here.

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returningtoyourvisionduringaseasonofchange
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Returning to the Heart of Your Vision During a Season of Change

Autumn is known as the season of change, rebirth, and growth. Not only do we see change and growth visibly around us, but it’s a time of year where we might be experiencing changes within ourselves, our business, or our goals. Today I want to bring to the table a conversation about why it’s important to stick with and trust your goals, your dreams, or your vision during a season of change. We will encounter change in our lives no matter the season, and sometimes that change will be in small increments and other times it will hit us like a storm. However that change enters your life, here are some thoughts on trusting that vision you so passionately saw for yourself from the beginning.

Transitioning from Summer to Fall

For me, the summer months inched by for my blog and business, and even my auditions seemed to slow their roll. But now that fall has arrived I’m in full-on crazy busy mode. My inbox is getting busier and busier as the weeks go on, I find myself flooded with new ideas and sometimes struggling to make time for it all. While I try to stick to powerblocking my days, as new opportunities arise and my schedule gets more jam-packed, I have to give myself mental checks to remember my initial goals and always return back to the heart of my vision. There are some weeks when I spend far too much time worrying about my blog and I have to be intentional about giving my writing, acting, and product creation side of my life enough attention and nurture too.

Your Work Evolves but Your Vision Remains

My blog is constantly evolving and especially because I’m relatively new to the blogging world, I’m finding exactly how I fit into this crazy blogosphere (or rather, stand out). I like incorporating new ideas into my blog or exploring new branches of blogging, but I know that the reason I started this blog was to inspire and encourage other women and people in general. Even if that inspiration comes in an unassuming way (like sharing things I’m loving for fall). In this blogging world, it can be hard not to get swept up into monetizing like crazy and trying to jump into the stream of bloggers that promote a new sale every hour. That works for them, they love it, and that’s great! But that’s not the heart of my vision. I constantly return back to my manifesto I wrote when I first published this blog. Do I find inspiration in style and beauty? Sure, of course! And that’s not to say I won’t be sharing things like that. However, I will never stop writing heartfelt inspirational blog posts that I hope inspire or motivate someone.

Bridging the Gap Between Ideas

Do you ever come across someone, whether in real life or on the internet, that suddenly makes everything click for you? I’ve heard Ashley Lemieux and her incredible story before on multiple podcasts but for some odd reason, it wasn’t until this week where I felt her journey and mission clicked with me. She found a way to bridge the gap between having a blog and the products she was making that had a greater purpose and she’s given me more inspiration than she knows. She truly understands balancing blogging and having a product shop and I love that she has found ways to keep on inspiring people every day and give back in life-changing ways. I have been trying to bridge the gap for so long between my blog and the products I create in my product shop and this week has been one of the most clarifying weeks I’ve had in a long time. I have some big changes that will be coming and ideas that I can’t wait to share!

Returning to Your Vision

Whatever it is that you do, take time to be present with yourself and remember your intentions for your dreams and your life. When things in your life start to change or get busy, pause and reflect. When I have busy weeks or even busy months and spend far too much time worrying about things that don’t matter I have to stop and ask myself: why am I worrying about this? Why am I spending so much time doing this? And if you’re experiencing a slow season, return to the heart of your vision and take a small step each day towards that goal. It can be hard, but it will pay off.

Let’s encourage each other during this season of change and growth! Comment below and tell me what returning to the heart of your vision looks like for you.



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