Week In Review, Vol. III

Okay, I admit, I’ve been absolutely horrible about posting in the last month between work, my online class, and maintaining my sanity I haven’t been setting aside enough time to dedicate to my blog. BUT the class is over, I’ve got myself on a new routine, and I’ve been feeling SUPER creative lately so stay tuned for upcoming content. 

If you follow me on socials, you’ll know that my best friend recently got engaged! I love, love, love weddings so I’m incredibly excited to help her with the planning; I’m sure I’ll include some planning posts on here in the future!

In other news, nothing really kicks into gear the need/desire to get in shape like a wedding. Not only have I pushed myself to work out at least five days a week, but I’ve started watching what I’m eating a bit closer, while cutting out pop. I also start my day with a glass of apple cider vinegar water. I was totally apprehensive about this, but I have to admit, it WORKS! It’s only been a week, but I’m significantly less bloated and have better digestion daily. 

Keep scrolling to see what else I’ve been up to during my mini hiatus!

Quick Reads:

What I’m Reading: Love & Luck by Jenna Evans Welch

What I’m Watching: Sherlock on Netflix

What I’m Listening To:

God is a Woman // Ariana Grande

Happy Now // Zedd, Elley Duhé

Stay // 5 Seconds of Summer (available on Spotify)

Thunderclouds // Sia, Diplo, & Labrinth

Animal // Troye Sivan

I’m Good // Wafia

Must’ve Been ft. DRAM // Chromeo

Run Wild // Thutmose

Lost ft. Chelsea Jade // Jai Wolf

broken //lovelytheband

Latest Purchases:

  • Not a purchase, but as a birthday gift I received this adorable seersucker dress from Lilly Pulitzer from my parents, and I’m obsessed.
  • NARS Powermatte Lip Pigment in American Woman
  • These adorable J. Crew Factory block-heel sandals go with just about everything! 
  • These nude patent leather flats from J. Crew Factory are perfect for the office.
  • Everyone needs a classic, white button-down, so I had to pick up (yet another) while it was on sale!
  • This camel cotton-wool Teddie sweater is a must-have to gear up for fall layers, also from J. Crew Factory.
  • Jo Malone London Discovery Collection from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale – English Pear & Freesia is my favorite!
  • Urban Decay Naked2 Basics Set, also from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale – I’m super impressed with all of the products in this set. I’m going to need to add the eyeshadow primer potion and All Nighter setting spray to my regular makeup routine.

Looking Ahead: Now that the facelift is nearly complete, I’m looking forward to bringing you some new content! I’ve been feeling awfully nostalgic lately, especially after going back through posts from when I initially began my blog, and I’ve been looking to write some posts similar to how I used to write. Prepare yourselves for a few more thought-provoking and fashion-related articles as I go back to my roots! Also, if you have anything you’d like to see on the blog, comment below or DM me on my socials and I’ll be happy to share.

Have a fabulous weekend!

-K.

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PR Girl Season 2: New Faces, Same Hustle

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This Fall, WhatRUWearing brings PR Girl back for round two! This season, the reality web series gives viewers a look behind the scenes of three PR pros navigating the worlds of fashion, beauty and lifestyle PR. If you read my previous post for season 1, you’d know that I loved every second of the show, and it left me so inspired to pursue a career in PR. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to get to know the stars of the new season a bit better by featuring them here!

Today, I’m introducing you to Nolita Pore. Nolita recently relocated from Houston to Chicago, making the career leap from higher education to PR and marketing. In her new role as Social Media & Public Relations Manager at Namaste, a leading hair care company, she demonstrates her expertise of how the digital marketing world operates in developing and executing strategic campaigns, brand management, and more. In addition to her full-time role, Nolita exercises her creative writing skills on her amazing blog The MonaLita. Learn more about Nolita in my Q & A with her below!

 

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Q & A with Nolita Pore

Kourtney: Why did you want to get into the PR profession?

Nolita: I have wanted to be in a creative field ever since I was a little girl. PR has allowed me to find that perfect balance as a creative. I can utilize all of creative talents and ideas to push a brand forward.

What do you find most challenging about your career?

What I have found most challenging at times has been teaching people that I do so much more than write captions for Instagram posts. That’s just 1% of the impact that I have had on the brands that I have worked for. Typically I have found that people who do not understand the power of digital marketing lack the ability to respect what my profession calls for me to do.

What drives your success?

What drives my success is my desire to establish a sustainable legacy of wealth for my future family. Every day I wake up with the intent to be paid my worth, to make my family proud, and do all that I can to get a few future brown babies of the Forbes list. Oh also, I won’t stop grinding until I can take a sweepstakes sized check to Navient headquarters and pay my student loans off in FULL.

What do you do to keep current in the PR industry?

I have to keep my finger on the pulse of the culture. I value the demographic that I strategically market to because I am that demographic. By me valuing them I have to know what’s going on across the board in the culture.

What surprised you most about working in PR?

What surprised me the most was how misunderstood PR and digital marketing is. It’s always funny when I travel for work and people assume I’m being paid to fly to different cities and simply twiddle my thumbs but once they realize I work 10-12 hour days working the beautiful events they only see from one perspective on social media they respect what I do more.

What is your favorite part of your job? Least favorite?

Favorite part is seeing the end result of my strategies and hard work. My least favorite part at times can be having to engage in surface level conversation at events because I am an introvert in my mind and if a conversation isn’t helping me to grow or learn I prefer to remain quiet.

What has been your biggest win thus far?

My biggest win thus far was breaking into this industry after soooooooooooooooooooooo many people told me to just go teach because it probably wouldn’t play out the way I wanted but look at me now!

Have you had to overcome any big obstacles? If so, how did you deal with it?

My biggest obstacle was making the decision to give up my life in Houston to move back to Chicago to pursue my career change from higher education to pr/marketing. I had to readjust to living with family at the age of 30 after having lived on my own for 10+ years. It was a challenge but that short term sacrifice has set ya girl up to be in this season of growth right now, so it’s all good.

How do you like to spend your time outside of work?

Outside of work I love to go on solo adventures whether it be to a new restaurant, walk on the beach, or going to a concert. Also I am still on cloud 9 of being back out on my own with my new apartment so I just love coming home and sitting in silence in MY place.

If you weren’t in PR, what would you be doing?

If I wasn’t in PR and didn’t have level 10 stage fright I would probably be a singer. I love singing but I just get soooooo nervous.

What is your best advice for aspiring PR professionals?

Figure out what YOUR formula of success looks like and do not sleep on what your gut tells you. My formula of success has been me being me and people either love it or move around. When I stopped going to interviews attempting to present myself how society tells me to I found that those interviewing connected with how real I am and my passion for what I do. Show your hunger and go for yours! The right people will respect it and want you on their team.

Follow Nolita @TheMonaLita

 

Are you caught up on the first season? You can binge watch season 1 on the PR Girl Series website, and check out my Q & A with the star of season 1, Alexandra Moresco here.

– K.

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How to Survive & Thrive in a Long Distance Relationship

My guy and I on my recent trip to his new town.

If you’ve been reading my blog or following me on social media for any length of time, you’ll know that I’ve been in a long distance relationship for the last three years, with another 10 months to go before we’re living in the same state. It wasn’t always this way, we were together for a year and a half prior to making the decision to go long distance in order to pursue our career goals. 

Since we’ve been doing the long distance thing for so long, I like to consider myself a subject matter expert in the topic. I’ve had a number of friends and acquaintances come to me asking for advice on how to deal when they end up in a long distance relationship, so I thought I would put my primary tips together in one place. Please remember that every couple is unique, and has their own way of coping in various situations. That being said, what has worked for my relationship may or may not work out the exact same way for you. 

The Goods: LDR Tips + Tricks

Trust your partner. I feel as though this is a relationship basic regardless of distance, but I CANNOT emphasize this enough! If you do not trust your partner, you are bound to run into so many issues in the future that will jeopardize your relationship. 

Communication. Communication. Communication. This is just as important, if not more important than trust. In long distance, communication is the foundation of your relationship because you don’t have the ability to hang out together or to go on dates regularly. If something is bothering you, talk about it ASAP so you can remedy the issue before it becomes a much bigger problem. Ry and I also talk to one another (or at least text) once a day at a minimum; never underestimate the power of a good morning and goodnight text. 

Be Patient. This is something I’m still working on because I am seriously one of the most impatient people in the world. I constantly have to remind myself that we took a much different path than most people, and we will be together again in just a few short months. It’s difficult right now, but it will be so worth it in the long run!

Make time for your significant other. Life gets busy and it’s so easy to get caught up in everything going on around you. Do not let “out of sight, out of mind” set in. Schedule a weekly FaceTime date and stick to that “us time”, call them on your way home from work or on your lunch period — whatever it is that works best for both of you, plan it out and stick to it!

Have a strong support group behind you. I honestly leaned on my friends and family so much when Ryan initially moved away. I booked up the vast majority of my time with friends, work and extracurricular activities so that I wasn’t spending too much time thinking by myself. It is so important for you to have friends and family that support both of you and your relationship. Furthermore, if you’ve met your SO’s family and you plan on being in the relationship for the long haul,  foster a relationship with them.  When Ryan moved away, I decided to still stick to our Sunday breakfast and church routine with his family while I lived close to them, and I still make an effort to hang with them every so often. Not only did this help with coping, but I have a great relationship with his family!

Look at the distance as an opportunity. It’s an opportunity to travel and visit wherever your SO is living and it’s surrounding areas. It’s an opportunity to focus on yourself a bit more, and to grow and nurture yourself individually, so that your relationship can be that much stronger. It’s also an opportunity to learn more about your SO on a deeper level — yes, this is possible with distance, reference”communication” section for details.

The Bottom Line

I’m not going to sugarcoat it — long distance is HARD, and it will not work out if you don’t work at it every. single. day. Initially, people are going to doubt it. I chose to be naïve to it for the longest time until it was recently brought up to me by several people that they were surprised that we lasted. Seriously, I’ve had people say this to my face! Take it with a grain of salt. Much as with everything else in life, you get out what you put in to it. Stay positive, stay strong, and don’t let anyone control your relationship but the two people involved.

Are you in a long distance relationship, and have a tip I missed? Comment below! I’d love to hear your solutions.

-K

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Week in Review, Vol. II

It’s hard to believe that we are already halfway through 2018! Unfortunately, I’m a bit behind on all of my blog updates since I was out of town last week and didn’t even touch my computer, which was much needed.

Lately, in hopes of saving money, I’ve been trying to spend mindfully, which means not going shopping every time I receive a paycheck. However, after purging my closet a few months ago, I realized that I desperately needed some new summer clothes. I recently went to the mall in search of some new summer clothes, and had a difficult time finding items that weren’t “trendy” or similar to clothes that I already have. You will not believe where I ended up… Abercrombie! I haven’t shopped there since high school, but I was pleasantly surprised by some of their new styles. Keep reading to see what items I picked up on my shopping trip.

Quick Reads:

What I’m Reading: Outlander Series – “An Echo in the Bone” by Diana Gabaldon (yes, still, but I’m nearly 3/4s through! It actually might be my favorite book in the series)

What I’m Watching:The Bold Type on Freeform 

What I’m Listening To:

5 Seconds of Summer’s latest album Youngblood

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart // Backstreet Boys

Summer Is a Curse // The Faim

New Light // John Mayer

Alone Together // Dan + Shay

Ocean (feat. Khalid) // Martin Garrix

I’m A Mess // Bebe Rexha

Born To Be Yours // Kygo, Imagine Dragons

Latest Purchases:

  • I have a huge thing for rompers lately. This adorable navy floral number was too cute to pass up
  • This knot front dress is not usually my style, but when I tried it on and it fit like a glove, I just had to have it!
  • This polka dot dress gave me major Parisian vibes and I adore the silhouette
  • I have been searching for a classic lace trim cami that won’t break the bank. Lucky for me, this one is currently on sale.
  • Finally, everyone needs a cute, summery floral top just like this one. It will look so cute with white jeans or shorts!

Looking Ahead: As I previously stated, I’m a bit behind on finishing up the facelift here on Keeping It Kourtney, BUT it’s nearly finished! I’m also still working on my summer schedule, so send me a message or comment below what you’d like to see in the coming months.

-K.

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Beauty Essentials + Product Reviews

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of trying out new beauty products, but there are some items that I cannot give up. All of my below beauty essentials are affordable prices, and can be found at your local drugstore. Please know that this is not a sponsored post, and all my opinions are my own. I would not recommend any products that I would not use myself.

The Essentials

TRESemme Tres Two Hairspray (level 4) // I have been using this hairspray since high school and still swear by it. It works just as well as the high-end hairsprays that cost $20 a can, but at an affordable price (only about $4).

TRESemme Heat Tamer // I started using this product in college when I realized just how much damage my straightener and curling iron did to my hair because I wasn’t using a heat protectant. This product has made a world of difference on my hair – it is much more silky smooth even after applying heat.

Dove Refresh + Care Volume & Fullness Dry Shampoo // This is by far the best dry shampoo I’ve used and it smells AMAZING! I’ve tried a number of other dry shampoos, but this I’m also a big fan of Dove’s new coconut scent, perfect for summer!

Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Shampoo & Conditioner // This shampoo and conditioner makes my hair feel silky smooth, not to mention it smells heavenly!

Invisibobbles Hair Ties // These do not damage your hair. Before I purchased them, I read that they don’t crease your hair, but I found that to be false. When I’m at work, there are times where I’ll throw my hair up on the top of my head to focus. I’d take the hair tie out an hour or so later, and I would still have the crease. Nevertheless, I love that these hair ties don’t snap nor damage your hair. 10/10 would recommend for those of you who have thicker hair. 

Garnier Skin Active Micellar Cleansing Water for Waterproof Makeup // I hopped on the micellar water bandwagon about a year ago, and was not disappointed. Check out my previous post about how I incorporated micellar water into my skin care routine.

Aveeno Eczema Therapy Itch Relief Balm // This stuff is as good as my prescription ointment for half the price! My only complaint is that it is a bit oily so I only put it on at night after I shower, right before I go to bed; however, I’ve never had a problem with it staining my sheets or anything, which is a plus. By morning, my skin feels soft without much itchiness throughout the day.

Burt’s Bees Lip Balm // Another classic high school staple of mine that I do not leave the house without to this day. Living in Michigan where the weather is constantly changing, I am no stranger to dry, cracked lips. Let me tell you – this product has worked miracles for me! The company also focuses on what is good for both their customers and the environment; not only is it made of natural ingredients, but the packaging is eco-friendly.

PRODUCT REVIEWS

It’s been a while since I’ve done a product review so let’s recap: I rate all products I try on a five star scale. This review in particular is also not sponsored; I purchased these products myself, and am giving you guys my honest opinion.

Brazilian Bum Bum Cream // This stuff has been EVERYWHERE lately, so you know I just HAD to get my hands on it! Honestly, I was a bit skeptical at first – I don’t venture out of my usual body lotions because of my eczema and skin sensitivities; however, I have found a new favorite “anytime” lotion. Not only does it smell incredible, but my skin has never been more soft and smooth. I will admit, I’m not totally trading in my eczema creams because flair ups still occur, and this lotion isn’t meant to clear up eczema, but I will absolutely be purchasing the big tub once I run out. I give this product 4 out of 5 stars. Note: this is the only item on this list that you cannot purchase from a drug store. I bought mine from Sephora.

OGX Refresh & Revitalize + Argan Oil of Morocco Dry Shampoo // I rate this product a 2.5. While the product smells absolutely amazing, I felt as though I had to use a significant amount of it in order to not my hair look so greasy after just one day, and I still had to put my hair up to make it look half decent. I was pretty disappointed in the product as a whole.

OGX Smoothing + Shea Sleek Smooth Style Spray // This is meant to be for thermal protection and to speed blow dry time. I give this product a 2 out of 5 stars because it didn’t speed up my drying time. While it did provide thermal protection, it made my hair super wet, and more difficult to straighten. Additionally, I wasn’t a big fan of the scent, but that is just personal preference. 

What are the beauty products you can’t live without?

-K.

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Big Announcement

I have been teasing you all about a big announcement for a few months now, and it’s finally time for me to tell you all the big news… 

SURPRISE! I REBRANDED!! 

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The new logo

I know what you guys are thinking… “okay, Kourtney, but didn’t you just rebrand a few years ago?” The answer is yes, yes I did; however, one thing I love about blogging is that blogs aren’t meant to remain stagnant – a blog grows and changes with its author. When I previously rebranded, I was fresh out of college, and didn’t really have a good grasp on what a brand consisted of. Since one of my responsibilities at work is managing our brand and taking a few classes, I now have a better understanding of what brand management entails. 

I’ve always thought of this blog as an extension of myself and my creative outlet. Truth be told, I’ve been feeling as though my blog has been missing something, but I just couldn’t put my finger on it. This in turn made me feel as though I wasn’t being 100% true to myself and that was being reflected in my blog. I cannot stress enough how much I adore solely writing about topics that I’m passionate about, and being able to connect with my readers on a personal level. That being said, I felt as though a change needed to be made and, thus, a new brand was born!

I’d like to extend a HUGE thank you to Katelyn at Driftwood and Daisies for taking on this project with me, and sharing her AMAZING design work!

Stay tuned for a new look coming soon!

-K.

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24 Hours in Annapolis

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that last week I visited my boyfriend at his new home in Maryland. As always with long distance relationships, the week together wasn’t nearly as long as we would have liked, but we had so much fun! During my vacation, I had the opportunity to explore Baltimore, DC, Frederick, and a spontaneous Memorial Day trip to Annapolis.

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Ry & I capitalizing on the gorgeous scenery

Annapolis, Maryland is an adorable historic, seaside town on Chesapeake Bay, and happens to be the capital of Maryland. Being the capital, I was leery about it being crazy tourist-y, but that wasn’t the case at all. We had a bit of a late start, so we didn’t get to see nearly as much as we wanted to, but we enjoyed our short time so much, that we are already planning a return trip in the future. Needless to say, it turned out to be our favorite part of the trip!

Continue reading for some of our suggestions of places to see when you visit:

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William Paca House from the garden

William Paca House & Gardens // Take a peek inside the what it was like to be a member of high society in the 1700s by touring this grand home! What’s significant about William Paca? One of the four signers of the Declaration of Independence from Maryland, Paca was a wealthy member of Annapolis society from his birth in 1740 until his death in 1799. He also served as governor of Maryland from 1782-1785. This house was one of the first Georgian-style houses in Annapolis, and had quite the history before being restored to its original state in the 1950s. 

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Maryland State House
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The exact spot where George Washington resigned

Maryland State House // Did you know that the US capital wasn’t always Washington, DC? The Maryland State House served as the capital from November 1783- August 1784. Though the reign was short-lived, the building has housed various historical events, and remains the oldest state house that is still in legislative use. You can also see the exact room where George Washington resigned from politics here. 

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Our lunch spot on the trip: Middleton Tavern

Eat seafood // If your lunch or dinner plans include beer and excellent seafood, then look no further than Middleton Tavern. Established in 1750, the tavern has played host to several renowned historical figures; you can check out their website for the full history of the establishment. One of my sorority sisters also recommended checking out the Chart House on our return trip. 

Sail Chesapeake Bay // Learn how to sail or rent out a sailing charter to fully take in the beauty of Chesapeake Bay. Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough time to actually partake in this activity, but it’s definitely on my bucket list!

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View of Memorial Circle from the top floor of the history museum

Shop ‘Til You Drop // There is some great shopping in Annapolis near Memorial Circle. Some of my favorites include Sperry and The Pink Clam. Also be sure to check out the local shops; you never know what treasures you’ll find!

Visit the Naval Academy // We did not have the time during our day trip to tour the Naval Academy because of our late start, but the campus looks spectacular!

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Sailboats on Chesapeake Bay

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream For… // ICE CREAM! There are countless options around Annapolis to satisfy your sweet tooth. If ice cream isn’t your thing, check out the local froyo and fudge shops, as well.

Have you been to Annapolis or surrounding areas, before? Let me know what your favorite activities are in the comments below!

– K.

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Note: The historical information included in this post was attained from tours, brochures, and plaques located at the historical site by the Maryland Historical Society and Historic Annapolis.