Sunday, July 31, 2011

Newsworthy Nails!

Hello girlies! (and guys too if you're out there!)

Today I thought I'd share with you guys a little trick that I learned this weekend for doing my nails. If you played with Silly Puddy as a kid, you might remember that you could stick it on newspaper and the ink would transfer over. My uncle taught me how to do it, and I thought it was the coolest thing. Well now I get to be a kid again because yesterday my brother's girlfriend Vicky taught me how to transfer newspaper onto my nails!

I'm not exactly great at freehand nail art, and I wasn't very impressed wth the Sally Hansen Salon Effects stickies for everyday wear (they'd be great for an event or if you're in a pinch though), so I'm absolutely loving this because it's super easy and quick!

Here's what you'll need:
Newspaper Nails Supplies


First, paint your nails with the color of your choice and let it dry completely.

Once your nails are completely dry, cut strips from the newspaper that are big enough to fit over your fingers (about 4-5 lines of text).

Dip your finger in the rubbing alcohol. Make sure then entire nail is covered.

Bring your finger out of the rubbing alcohol and immediately press one of the newspaper strips onto your nail.

Hold the newspaper in place for about 10 seconds, then peel it off. You can repeat this a few times for each nail depending on how much text you want.

When all of your nails have been inked, go over them with a clear top coat.

Here's what mine looked like when they were done!

Have a fabulous week!
 

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Today, July 30th, is my mommy's birthday!

I have to babysit tomorrow night and my brother Matt has to work, so birthday dinner will become birthday lunch, though I'm not exactly sure what we're having yet. Then, tomorrow afternoon my brother Phil's gifrlfriend and I will bake her her cake!

Here's one of my personal favorite pictures of me and my momma!


Happy Birthday Mom!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Friday's Fancies!

Today, for the first time, I'm linking up with {AV} at Long Distance Loving for
Friday's Fancies!

Here is my entry:
It's called 
"WholeHeartedlyHannah- Cowboy Couture"

The set that gets the most "likes" will be featured on next week's Friday's Fancies post, so go on over and vote or if you haven't made an entry, do it!

Have a fabulous weekend!

Ring the Bell

As you may already know from this week's 'What I'm Loving Wednesday' post, today was my mom's last day of radiation therapy for breast cancer. She began earlier this summer and has gone to the hospital everyday. You can read my post about her cancer HERE.

A common tradition among oncology centers is for a patient to ring a bell on his/ her last day of radiation, and my mom's hospital is no different. When it's someone's last day, the whole staff and everyone in the waiting area stand by as the patient rings the bell to symbolize the end of their treatment.


One thing that has really struck me about her treatment is the sense of comraderie among everyone involved. All of the nurses knew the patients by name and vice versa. Everyday, my mom would come home and tell me about the people she talked to in the waiting room, and as time went on, the names got more and more familiar. I could really tell how much they supported and encouraged each other, and it was really a beautiful thing to see that in the flesh today and all of the times I've gone with her.

Today, as my mom came back into the waiting room, tears welled up in her eyes. It really made me happy to see her so happy, as shehas been such a strong fighter and an absolute inspiration to me throughout these last 9 months.

When it was time for her to ring the bell, everyone gathered and I, of course, whipped out my camera to capture on video this momentous day! Since it was a very personal moment I am not going to post the video, but here's a photo to give you an idea of what the bell looks like (although this one is not from our hospital).


Ever since I learned about the tradition of ringing the bell, I have been reminded on a quote from the classic movie "It's a Wonderful Life":

"Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings!"

This quote seems absolutely fitting for today. It is an absolute blessing that her cancer was caught as early as it was, and that her body tolerated treatment so well, and I know that someone has been watching over her these past 9 months.
Her guardian angel definitely deserves its wings.


Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Hey Everyone!
Today is Wednesday, so of course I'm linking up with Jamie for What I'm Loving Wednesday!

Here's what I'm loving this week:

I'm loving that tomorrow is my mom's last day of radiation! After that she'll get some meds every few weeks and be on some pills, but the big stuff will be over!

I'm loving summer movies! Last weekend I went to see Friends with Benefits with a few girlfriends and we loved it! This weekend I'm hoping to go see Crazy Stupid Love when it comes out, and then in  August The Help and The Change-Up both look pretty good!
(Seriously, how cute is JT!?)

I'm loving watching Boy Meets World . It's one of my absolute favorite shows from yesteryear and I just picked up season 2 this weekend- I've been watching it nonstop!

I'm loving browsing Pinterest. I haven't requested an account (or however you even do it...) but looking at gorgeous pictures like these is definitely making me think about joining up!

I'm loving that it's almost time to start back to school shopping! Summer is great, but I love the feeling of starting out the year with brand new clothes and supplies, and getting back into a solid routine!

I'm loving "For Audrey" nail polish by China Glaze.
It's really thin, but I this week I finally figured out a way to make it work, and I've been loving it on my nails. 
It's a perfect summer color!

What are you loving this week!?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Feelin' Thrifty?

You may or may not know at this point that I am a creature of the large, predominantly female species know as shoppers. I love the feeling of finding something that I've been coveting, or even something out of the blue that I immediately fall in love with! And while I could undoubtedly spend hours at the mall (and I usually do- our mall is huge.), I'm also a teenager with a fairly small budget. This, along with what I like to think of as a natural instinct for bargain hunting, forces me to get creative in my shopping process. One of my favorite ways to get more and better items for less is to frequent thrift stores. When a lot of people think of thrift shopping, they think of musty, dirty, outdated items from stores that aren't in much better condition. Although this is sometimes the case, it is not always true, and there are many fabulous items to be found! So, without further adieu, here are my top tips for thrifty shopping!

1. Find the right store for you
Chances are, there are several thrift stores in your area. Many hospitals have their own, some benefit specific charities, and some are free-standing. Check out all the ones you can find, because they are not all created equal. Some are cleaner than others, and some have more desirable items. The trick is to find the store that works best for what you're looking for. The ideal store is clean, well-stocked, and fairly up-to date. Location is also key. A store's inventory typically reflects the area that it is in and the population its items come from- i.e. stores that are in more affluent areas typically pull from a more upscale crowd and vice versa. However, you may not be able to settle on just one. For example, my mom and I like for furniture, one for jewelry, and one for clothing. This brings me to my next tip...

2. Don't just look for clothes
Most thrift stores don't limit themselves to clothes, and neither should you! There are all different types of unique jewelry, furniture, home decor items, accessories, etc. to be found, so keep an open mind when it comes to looking for less obvious items.

3. Be a discerning shopper
Once you've found something that strikes your fancy, make sure to give it a once over (or twice over) and inspect it for rips, tears, stains, cracks, etc. depending on what the item is. However, keep in mind that many small tears (especially those along seams and hemlines) can easily be mended, either by your or by a tailor. Also, don't rule out items if they are simply in need of minor alterations (darts, raising a hemline, etc), as the price of the item plus the cost of alterations will most likely still be fairly low.

4. Stick to brand names
This is not a "rule" per se, but more of a personal practice of mine when it comes to thrift shopping. Most thrift stores have a mix of brand-name and non brand-name clothing. However, the difference in price between the two is usually minimal, if anything. So doesn't it make the most sense to go for a higher end piece from a brand that you know and trust rather than something random? This rule especially applies to basics. Say I'm looking for a white polo, and I find one that is from Ralph Lauren, and one that is from a store like Target, WalMart, etc. Obviously (although I have NO problem shopping the latter), I'm going to pick the Ralph Lauren because: A. I'd be paying about the same amount either way, and B. The difference in price between the non brand-name piece at the thrift store and a brand new one from a store is probably not very large. Of course, there are always exceptions to this, such as finding an absolutely fab one of a kind piece.

5. Know what NOT to buy
There are some items that simply should not be purchased used/previously worn. These include bathing suits, undergarments, shoes, hats, and hair accessories.

6. Keep a positive attitude
It is important to realize that, even at your ideal thrift store, the stock is not always the same. Therefore, there might be trips (even several in a row) where you do not find anything you like. Don't give up though- it's always worth it when you find something fabulous!

7. Make regular trips
To make the most of thrift store shopping, it is beneficial to make regular trips to your store to go through the inventory. I typically go thrift shopping about once every month or two.

8. Keep a budget. 
Although items at thrift stores can often be very inexpensive, it is useful to know ahead of time what the most you will pay for an item is. This will help you avoid overpriced impulse buys that may not end up being worth the money.

Now that I have hopefully shared some helpful hints about thrift shopping, here are some of my most fabulous recent thrift store finds.
(Just to give you an idea of price, the most I paid for any of these items was $30, but most were around $10 and under.)


As I mentioned earlier, thrift store shopping shouldn't just be limited to clothing. It's a great way to find authentic, vintage pieces when decorating your home. 

I actually bought the furniture in my bedroom from a thrift store

The style of my bedroom would probably be best described as vintage-preppy-glam, and this ornate furniture from the 1960's works perfectly against my pink and green color palette!

I got all of the items in this set (plus another being stored because it doesn't fit in my room) for just about $1000- an absolute steal for furniture that is solid wood and authentic to its period!

Happy Thrifting!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

unBRAlievable!

This post may be a little on the TMI side, but, girls, I think it is quite necessary.

I'll start off with two simple questions:

What size bra do you wear?

and

What is your bra size?

For some of you, the answers to both of these questions might be a no brainer... and your answers might be the same.

But for many of you, they probably aren't.

Now, I'll share with you a story:

Today, I was shopping and poked into Victoria's Secret- not an uncommon occurence. However, today they were hosting an event where, if you got measured for a bra, you were entered to win a pair of sweatpants. I know how to measure myself for bras, but hadn't done it in a while there was free clothing involved, so I set my bags down as the sales lady whipped out her trusty pink measuring tape. She asked me what size bra I was currently wearing, and I confidently told her my size. She responded by telling me that I was measuring out to a full cup size bigger than what I thought I was or what I was wearing. This was a little shocking to me. My bra didn't feel that uncomfortable. I'd heard that most women actually wear the wrong size bra, but I proudly thought I was one of the women on the other side of that statistic. Boy was I wrong!

According to Time Magazine
up to 85% of women wear the wrong size bra.


Wearing the wrong size bra might sound about as trivial as wearing a shirt that's "a little big on you", but a properly fitted bra is actually crucial in preventing various health issues.

These include:

Back strain
 A bra that is too small cannot adequately support your bust, causing pressure and unnecessary stress on the back. This can lead to intense pain and can trigger even bigger problems with your muscles and spine.

Poor Posture
Similar to the problems that wearing an ill-fitting bra can cause with your back, the weight of your bust in a bra that does not properly support it pulls your shoulders forward, which not only causes you to look hunched over, but can also lead to a whole host of other issues.

Irritation and Scarring
A bra that is too tight, especially those with underwire, will dig into your bust, causing the skin to become irritated or even scarred. Also, the straps of a bra that is not properly fitted can dig into the shoulders, causing further irritation.

Because of these issues (and because wearing the wrong size bra can be super unflattering!), it is crucial that every lady out there know her size. The best way to do this is to get measured every time you go out to buy a new bra. If you buy your bras from a store where measuring isn't available, you can learn how to measure yourself here.

In the end, a well-fitting bra will not only look better, but will feel better too.

Happy Bra Shopping!

 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Fill In the Blank Friday!

Today, I'm linking up with Lauren for Fill In the Blank Friday!


1.   One of my happiest moments ever was  getting my June SAT scores. That makes me sound like an antisocial, unloving, grade obsessed snob, but I don't care. The first time I took the test in May, my goal was to score between 1900 and 2000, and I got a 1970, so I definitely acheieved what I set out to do. But, when I took it again in June, I really had no idea what would happen to my score. When I took the test, I was so nervous about not improving (or even doing worse) that I was convinced I'd bombed it. Well, I got my scores a few weeks later and found that my score had gone up 80 points, bringing me to a 2050!

2.  Summer is wedding season and weddings are   something I've actually never experienced before, but I, like any other girl, cannot wait until the day that I get to plan my own.

3.  This summer     has been ridiculously hot so far. It's been in the 90s almost all week, and the high today is 101 degrees- it's supposed to get even hotter tomnorrow!

4.  My summer food of choice has been   waffles. I go to dance earlier than everyone else in the house eats, so I find myself sticking them in the toaster when I get home. Also, I have a belgian waffle iron, so I've been really into making them from scratch lately too!

5.  My summer uniform has been    dance clothes. Even on days I don't do anything, I still have to get dressed for dance 4 nights a week, so I've been living in leotards, tights, booty shorts, and various types of shoes.

6.  If I could spend the entire summer in one location I would choose      Rehoboth Beach, DE. My dad grew up around there, and my family goes on vacay there practically every summer. Except for one day trip, it's the only beach I've ever been to, and it just feels like home.

7.  My summer anthem is       "All Over Me" by Josh Turner- well, this summer anyway. As I mentioned before, country music and summer are just a perfect combination for me, and this song is so sweet- perfect for anything from a roadtrip to the beach to a romantic adventure!


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Summer Makeup Routine!

Here's a look at the at my daily makeup routine for the last few monthes. In the summer, I try to keep things as light as possible- i.e. only using powder to set concealer, rarely wearing eyeshadow, etc.

This was my first time making a video like this, so it's no work of art. 
I like the idea of incorporating videos into my blogging, though, so expect to see some more eventually!

video

Products Used:
Bath and Body Works Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel in Fresh Market Apple
Blistex Fruit Smoothies Lip Balm in Orange Cream
Garnier Nutritioniste Moisture Rescue Refreshing Gel-Cream
Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation in shade 100 Ivory
Maybelline Superstay Concealer in shade Ivory
Essence of Beauty makeup wedge
Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder in shade 001 Transparent
Bare Minerals Mini Kabuki Brush
ELF Professional Eyeliner Brush
Elf Elements Eyeshadow in shade Dusk (not shown)
Sephora Nano Eyeliner in shade 15 Gri Gri
CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Waterproof Mascara in shade Very Black
Revlon Colorstay Eyeshadow Quad in shade 02 Coffee Bean 
(I use the second darkest shade in the quad)
Random brandless flat shader brush
Maybelline ExpertWear Bronzer in shade 05 Forever Warm
Face Secrets Angle Blush brush
Random brandless kabuki brush

Have a fabulous weekend!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

To Be Honest

I've barely posted at all these past two weeks, and I feel like the posts I've done haven't been particularly creative. 

I've haven't been feeling very inspired lately, and I haven't had many good ideas for posts.

So, here's my idea:
What do you want to see?
Leave a comment letting me know what kind of posts you'd like to see more of- beauty, fashion, my life, organization, etc.

Obviously I won't be doing this all the time, but I thought it'd be a good thing to get me refreshed and back into the bloggy swing of things!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

F's 18th Birthday!

You may have heard me mention my friend F before- well, Friday was her 18th birthday!

Last night was her party, and I thought I'd share with you all a little something I put together for her!

As I mentioned before, she'll be going to college next month, so I decided to put together sort of a "shower gift basket" for her to take to school including a caddy filled with all of the items she'll need.


In the caddy I put:
Shampoo and Conditioner
Cotton pads, cotton balls, and cotton swabs
Nail polish remover
Facial cleanser
Disney Princess band aids
A bar of soap
Two toothbrushes
A tube of  toothpaste
Body wash
A loofah
Toilet-seat covers (personally, my favorite item included!)
Hand sanitizer
Ibuprofen

I wrapped the caddy up in shrink wrap and tied it with navy blue grosgrain ribbon. I tied a card with a poem on it into the bow.

The poem reads:

I looked up {her school's} colors
And found that they had none
So with blue, orange, pink (even clear!)
I got to have some fun!


I loaded up a caddy
With all that you may need
From nail polish remover to toilet-seat covers
And band aids if you bleed!


I really hope you like this gift
I thought it might be useful
But although I picked out lots of products
I already know you're beautiful!


Sadly, I didn't take any pictures at the party, but the party was a really good time, and I was happy to see that F loved her gift!

Also:
I am one away from having 25 followers, so if you're reading and haven't followed yet, do it!

Have a fabulous week!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Makeover Time!

"Cher's main thrill in life is a makeover. It gives her a sense of control in a world full of chaos."- Dion, Clueless

Hello, lovelies! It's been a busy week, and I am fully aware that I have been a totally MIA blogger!

But anyway...

My computer was looking a little bland and cluttered, so this week I gave her a little makeover!

My first order of business was taking care of my generic, factory wallpaper. About a year ago, my computer crashed, the hard drive had to be completely wiped, and the operating system had to be reinstalled. After that, I just never got around to changing my wallpaper from the boring standard windows background. I got a little inspired and here's what I came up with:

Before:

After:
 The font is called "Monogram KK" and I found it here.

I also decided to update my terrible system for organizing my documents.

I forgot to screencap it, but you can probably imagine: desktop halfway filled with random documents, random folders that go with applications floating around, documents with terrible names, etc.

You can see it in the pictures up there, but here's a close-up of my new and improved desktop:
I also have my recycling bin in the lower right corner.
Basically, the only things I have on my desktop are the bare necessities: Easy access to My Computer and My Documents, internet browsers, and my recycling bin. Anything else is filed away in its appropriate folder.

I also reorganized "My Documents"
The idea was to create general "umbrella folders" that specifically fit my needs. Each of my files fits into one of these folders, and most of them contain subfolders to organize further. For example, my "High School" folder contains a subfolder for the year and, within each of those, a folder for each class I had documents for. So, for example, if I need to look up a PowerPoint I created for my Spanish class Junior year, I know exactly where to look.

Also, some folders have two different homes. For example, my "Blog Pictures" folder is located both in "My Pictures" and in the "Blog" umbrella folder in "My Documents".

I want to do more of these organization posts, so let me know in the comments if this was helpful, and if you'd  like to see any more!

Have a fabulous day!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Once again, this week I'm linking up with Jamie at This Kind of Love for What I'm Loving Wednesday!

Here's what I'm loving this week:

I'm loving my followers- there's 20 of you now! You all leave such sweet comments, and your support is so encouraging to me. Thanks so much girls!

I'm loving the song "All Over Me" by Josh Turner. 
This song has been out for a while and it's a random choice, but it's super sweet and I've found myself listening to it a lot lately!

I'm loving that last year's Senior Ballet Company from my dance studio is having a get together this week! This group of us in particular have been together for years, and some of the girls who just graduated aren't taking summer classes, so it'll be great to all get together before last year's seniors head off to college! We're also handing out the company t-shirts we had made this year- we decided to do pinnies and from what I hear, they look great!

I'm loving the Mint Chocolate Javakula from Seattle's Best. I ordered it this morning at Borders, and it was absolutely TDF. Think part Double Chocolatey Chip Frapp al la Starbucks, part Mint Chocolate chip ice cream. You wouldn't think of Borders as a place for great coffee, but Seattle's Best is pretty fab!

I'm loving the book I'm currently reading, Growing Up Brady, by Barry Williams, aka Greg Brady on The Brady Bunch. Something you might not know about me is that most of my favorite TV shows are at least a decade old- some of these include Beverly Hills 90210, The Cosby Show, The Wonder Years,  and, of course, The Brady Bunch! It's one of the first "older shows" I got into, and I've loved it since I was little. The book talks about Barry Williams' childhood, how he got into showbiz, and what it was like, well, growing up Brady! The book also has summaries of each of the series' 116 episodes, as well as a little bit of commentary on each episode by Barry. It's a great book if you're either a fan of The Brady Bunch, or you just want to see what went into making one of America's most iconic television shows!

I'm loving that I found a green loofah to match my pink shower caddy! (Want to know what's in my caddy? Read it here!) I left my BB&B bag in the car, so this sad little stock photo will have to do!

I'm loving that The Life of a Suburban Princess included my question from her 400th post in her newest post! I asked what advice she had for new bloggers, and her answer was extremely thorough! Go check it out!

What are YOU loving this week?

Go link up with This Kind of Love and let us know what you're loving this Wednesday!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

4th of July Weekend!

Here's a little peek at some fun I had this holiday weekend!

On Saturday, Mom Dad, my brother M, and I went to a party at the home of some family friends. The afternoon was spent lounging on the deck and by the pool, enjoying food fresh off the grill, and enjoying the beautiful day! Unfortunately, I had plans that night and little time to go home and clean up, so I couldn't go swimming, but you bet my tootsies took a dip of their own while I basked in the sunshine!

After the party, my bestie E picked me up for some much needed QT- she is a camp counselor during the week, so I hadn't gotten to see her since we finished school!

Our first stop was to a local sports center for a game of mini golf
As you can see, we were quite the serious athletes...

...But not really.

After golfing, we picked up some ice cream at Baskin Robbins, and wandered around the shopping center while we ate.

Our favorite store turned out to be a shop called "Hair Hair Hair"...

...Needless to say, the window was an obvious photo op.

Next we pumped up the stereo, rolled down the windows, and took the long way back to E's house for a little before heading out again to see Bad Teacher. Cameron Diaz may have starred in the movie, and she was really funny, but my absolute favorite character was Scott Delacorte , a preppy, geeky teacher interested in Elizabeth Halsey's (Cameron Diaz's) worst enemy, Amy Squirrel. I haven't seen much of JT's acting before, but this was hilariously funny- I can't wait to see him in Friend with Benefits later this month!

Never have I looked paler, but I love love love this picture of us!

Sunday night, my friend F and I went to dinner at one of our favorite restaurants and afterwards took a walk around an outdoor shopping mall in the area. Sadly, we forgot to get a picture. We've been friends practically our entire lives, and in a little over a month she'll be headed off to art school, so I want to squeeze in as much time together as possible before she leaves!

Monday, the 4th of July, started out as a slow lazy day around the house. My brother P, his girlfriend V, and I decided to whip up some cupcakes using V's Martha Stewart Cupcake book. We made brown sugar pound cake cupcakes. I had to leave midway through, but they put their our own little patriotic touch on them!


Now of course, no Fourth of July celebration would be complete without a barbecue! Dad made up burgers and hotdogs on the grill while Mom prepared and served all the sidedishes. She decorated the table using a plaid table cloth along and little patriotic bear statuettes. 

After dinner, Dad, Mom, P, V, and I headed out to pick up my friend M, to go to a fireworks display at a local park. Last week, I showed a preview of the outfit I'd picked out, and I was excited to don my red, white, and blue!

Here's what I wore:
Originally, I planned on wearing a polo, but it seemed like a bit much when I decided to add my hairbow (you can read my post about it here), so I swapped it for a simple v-neck instead.

When we got to the park, Mom and Dad found themselves a spot on the bleachers, and P, V, M, and I staked out an area on the field. For the next few hours, we listened to live music, ate goodies, and played cards as we waited for the fireworks to start.

Finally, around 9:30, the display kicked off with the National Anthem, sung by the daughter of a local newscaster. Then, the fireworks began, and they were most definitely worth waiting for!


I thought the park did a fabulous job this year, as always, with their fireworks display. The whole presentation was super exciting, and, just when you thought they were done, another awesome set blasted off into the air! 

I also loved that the entire park was packed with families and friends, all coming together! It was a great way to celebrate the 235th birthday of the USA!

All in all, my 4th of July weekend was a fabulous one, packed with lots of fun activities and quality time with great friends and family!

What did you do on your holiday weekend!?