Hello 2019!

Gearing up for the year ahead

Happy New Year, everyone! I can hardly believe it, but 2019 is here and I’m gearing up for a big year ahead of me. Not only do I currently already have big plans in the works, but I have some BIG expectations for 2019. I’m not usually the girl to claim that this will be “my year”, but I have a really good feeling about this year. Heading into 2019 with a positive mindset, solid goals, and enthusiasm is the formula for creating a great year for yourself.

Goals

It’s safe to say that I have the tendency to get a little too ambitious when setting goals for the year. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, it doesn’t allow me to actually focus on achieving these goals, and I tend to slack on more than one (oops). As a means of holding myself accountable for these goals, I discovered and downloaded the HabitBull app on my phone. I’m using the free version that allows you to track up to five goals (there is a small fee to upgrade to the premium version that allows you to track more). It’s only been about a week, and I already feel as though I’ve progressed a lot in such a short time with these goals, so I’m excited to see how the rest of the year plays out!

  1. Be Mindful // This is my biggest priority this year. My intention with this goal is two-fold: to be conscious about what I’m putting in and on my body, as well as who and what I’m giving my energy to. Last year, despite physical and mental health being a major goal, I didn’t get where I wanted to be with it. I looked at it more as a chore, rather than a blessing that I have the ability to work out and choose what I eat. This year, I’m being hyper-conscious of what I’m eating, what workouts I’m doing, and how my body feels every day in order to be a healthier person; after all, we are only given one body, so why not take the best care of it. Additionally, in being mindful of who and what I’m giving my energy to, I plan to accomplish tasks one at a time and slow down in order to enjoy what I’m spending my time doing and who I’m with. In doing so, I’m cutting out negative people and tasks that aren’t necessary/don’t help me achieve what I need to or nourish my soul.
  2. Meditate, pray, and/or journal everyday // While I did this for the past few years, I didn’t make as much of a conscious effort as I would have liked to, and certainly didn’t go it every day. This year, I’m making it a part of my nightly routine. So far I’m finding that it is incredibly peaceful sitting down with my journal and Bible before bed and taking that quiet time for myself and God.
  3. Continue to expand my knowledge through an online class and Duolingo // I’ve said it before that if I could be a professional student, I would! Since I can’t, however, I plan on continuing my post-grad tradition of taking another online course to expand my knowledge. I adored the PRISM course by PR Couture that I took last year, so I’m debating if I want to do something similar to that, or take a different route with a field I’m not as knowledgable in. Additionally, I learned that one year is not enough time to become fluent in another language, so I’m continuing on with the Duolingo app this year.
  4. Be kind to myself // It is easy to get angry with yourself when things don’t go as planned or you’re not hitting your goals you’ve set as quickly as you’d like. I know I’m guilty of this and beat myself up about my shortcomings last year, so I’m making an effort to change that. This year, I’m not going to be as hard on myself — taking a rest day if I need it (not a rest week), eating a sweet treat on special occasions, etc. This way, I’m helping myself both physically and mentally.

Health Goals

  1. Drink more water // I’m really good about this most of the time at work; however, when I’m home and running around, this is something I’m HORRIBLE at. I’ve started carrying around a water bottle at all times so that I don’t have an excuse to not drink it. Also, I eliminated pop and most fruit drinks and cut down on (and mostly out, save special occasions) alcohol, so water, coffee and tea are really all that I have to choose from at the moment.
  2. Be active for a minimum of 30 minutes 5-6 days a week // Fun fact: I HATE working out, but I love the feeling after a good workout. I have a hard time with clear cut workout plans because I get bored with them. Plus, I do not like going to the gym so all of my workouts are done at home. Luckily, YouTube has a ton of FREE workout videos ranging from yoga to pilates to Barre and so much more, giving me the opportunity to switch up my workouts daily if I wanted to. By using this free resource, I’m saving money while still getting my sweat on.
  3. Cut out pop // This is a big one for me because I love Coca-Cola! So far, I’m doing well with this and not even craving it — then again, it’s only been a week, so we’ll see where it goes from here.

What’s Next?

As aforementioned, my calendar for this year is already filling up. I’m super excited to return to Europe this summer on a girls’ trip to take on FRANCE! This means that I’ll need to be more diligent in completing my Duolingo French course these next few months. In other exciting news, next week, Ry and I celebrate five years together, but that’s not even the best announcement… 2019 marks the end of long distance for us! Furthermore, I’ve received a few save the dates for weddings this year, plus I get to be the Maid of Honor at my best friend’s wedding this fall! My heart is soaring just thinking about how many exciting things are happening this year, and I can’t wait to share my stories with all of you for yet another year!

What are some goals/things you are looking forward to in 2019?

-K.

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Week In Review, Vol. IV

Week In Review, Vol. IV

Hey hey hey! It’s been a minute since my last update, and life has been crazy lately so it’s time for a quick review of what’s been happening on my side of town. Since my quick trip to Vegas last month, I’ve been on hiatus with blogging since life happens; however, this is all starting to turn around this week. Life is slowing down a bit, the holiday season is upon us, and I could not be more thrilled! I love the holidays. Yes, I’m 100% that person that starts drinking peppermint mochas and listening to Christmas music right after Halloween NO SHAME! I digress, let’s dive into the recap, shall we?

Me and my guy after the wedding festivities in the Flamingo Garden

Vegas Recap: In early October, Ryan and I took a brief trip to Las Vegas for his friend’s wedding. When I say brief, I mean VERY brief…  like less than 48 hours brief. Anywho, despite it being super quick we had so much fun! Honestly, I never had a desire to go to Vegas, but we had so much fun in such a short amount of time that we cannot wait to return next year for my best friend’s bachelorette party. We stayed at the Flamingo, which is also where we spent most of our time in the casino, but  I was bummed that we didn’t get to see much of the strip on foot, though I did get to visit the Venetian while I waited for Ry to arrive, which was super cool and slightly trippy. Once he arrived, we all headed to Fremont Street (aka Old Las Vegas) for the evening. Since it was a Sunday night there was not a ton going on, but we enjoyed two of the outdoor concerts taking place. Our last adventure of the trip was ziplining from the roof of the Rio Hotel 500 feet above Vegas. If you know me, you know that I HATE heights! It ended up being an extraordinary experience, but one that I’m fine only doing once. If you have any recommendations of things we should see or do on our next trip to Vegas, leave a comment below!

Quick Reads:

What I’m Reading: A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne

What I’m Watching: Manifest

What I’m Listening To:

Baby // Clean Bandit, Marina & the Diamonds, and Luis Fonsi

Without Me // Halsey

Speechless // Dan + Shay

Burning Man // Dierks Bentley & Brothers Osborne

Lover, Leaver // Greta Van Fleet

Higher // Social House

Mona Lisa // Lil Wayne & Kendrick Lamar

Close to Me // Ellie Goulding,   

Recent Purchases:

  • I just ordered these adorable leopard print flats from James Ascher and I’m hoping to get in a few wears with them before the snow falls!
  • Also ordered from James Ascher is the navy and orange Window Pane Open Front Shawl Jacket. The link was removed from the website, but you can see it in my Instagram fashion highlight!
  • I also recently purchased these Ellie Chelsea boots from Target for only $30 to replace my favorite Ralph Lauren booties (RIP) and I’m obsessed. I try to not spend a ton of money on boots for the mere fact that Michigan winters can be pretty gnarly and the sidewalk salt can destroy boots.
  • Finally, I purchased a Quip toothbrush. I’ve had my eye on it for a while, and have heard nothing but good things about the brand so I’m excited to see if it makes a difference. What really drew me to it was the price; it’s super affordable compared to other electric toothbrushes.

Latest Fashion Picks:

  • It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of layering, and this tweed coat from J. Crew would be the perfect top layer as the cold weather rolls in. Plus, tweed is always in style.
  • Believe it or not, my mom actually just picked up a pair of these Faux-Suede Stevie Pants from Old Navy and I want them in every color. Not only are they comfy, but they can be dressed up or down for most occasions.

Looking Ahead: In October, I fell off the workout wagon, so I’ve gotten back on the workout grind with some at home Pilates exercises. That being said, I plan on putting together a health/fitness post about the plan I’m sticking to for the next year, that will most likely come out in early January in lieu of my 2019 goals post. I also am excited to have the next week off of work for the Thanksgiving holiday, which will give me plenty of time to crank out some fun content I have for the blog through the end of the year! 

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

-K.

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2017 Goal Check-in / Lenten Promise

2017 Goal Check-in / Lenten Promise

I can barely believe it, but it’s already March which means we have nearly completed the first quarter of 2017. This also means that it’s time for a goal check-in. Surprisingly, I’ve been very good about my goals for this year, and I’ve even interlaced it with my Lenten Promise.

Since I’m trying to be a healthier human being, I gave up soda pop for Lent, which is actually super hard for me since I crave Coke/Cherry Coke on a regular basis. Seriously, we’re talking insane caffeine headaches on a daily basis as of lately due to a lack thereof. Yesterday marked one week without my beloved beverage of choice, and it is turning out to be a bit more difficult than I anticipated. Nevertheless, I’m pushing through it, and I think I’m doing pretty well if I do say so myself!

I’ve been pretty good about sticking to a workout regiment at least 4 days a week. Pilates has lately been my workout of choice and I’ve come to really enjoy it. Sometimes I have an occasional slip-up due to a long work day or post-work plans, but, if that’s the case, I try to get in at least a half hour leg and ab workout. I also drink at least 20 oz. of water a day which has made a huge difference in my complexion.

As for my travel goal, I’ve booked three trips within the next three months! I’m super excited for what the rest of the year holds!

How are you doing on your goals? If you’re religious, what did you give up for Lent?

-K.

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Ch-ch-ch-changes

In a recent post, I briefly stated that I was making a number of changes in my life. My goal is to live a more positive, healthy, happy life by making small changes now to help me achieve bigger goals and chase bigger dreams.

Working a desk job, I don’t have much ability to be active throughout the day. After being able to be active while at school (walking across campus to class, dance practices, free gym access, etc), I realized I could not maintain my old habits. With the help of my boyfriend Ryan, I’ve devised a plan consisting of a few lifestyle changes in order to help me stay in shape and, ultimately live a more positive and happy life.

  • My FitBit is my new best friend. For my birthday a few weeks ago, Ryan bought me a FitBit Alta per my request.  While I have yet to reach my daily goal of 10,000 steps, it has motivated me to get up and get moving. At work I tend to take the long route when walking to the water fountain, bathroom and my colleagues offices in order to get the most out of my steps. It also helps a lot with tracking my calorie intake on the app; it’s free and downloads to your phone while activating your FitBit after purchase.
  • Absolutely no fast food. Ryan and I decided to use the buddy system with this one. By cutting out all fast food, we are cutting out the option of taking the easy way out when it comes to lunch breaks. While I tend crave McDonald’s fries and tacos from Taco Bell, I’m breaking the habit by choosing healthier snack options such as Skinny Pop and baked chips. I also allow myself the occasional bit of Dove dark chocolate and chocolate milk when my sweet tooth is acting up.
  • Limit caffeine/drinking your calories. We also came up with the idea of limiting my caffeine intake to 2-3 times a week since I have a serious coffee and Coca~Cola addiction. Something that’s really helping me drink more water is the ability to track your water intake daily on the FitBit app. I’ve also been turning to sparkling water to help get the carbonation I often crave from pop.
  • Thinking positive thoughts. In a previous post I discussed my desire to live an overall more positive life and discussed the various ways I was doing so. You can check out that post here.
  • Make a daily routine. Right now I’m still trying to get the hang of my new sleeping schedule, but I have a sort-of routine that I’ve been sticking to as of late. The whole point of it for me, personally is to make sure I achieved all I needed to in the day.

What do you do to make sure you stick to your goals? Also, anyone with tips to quit biting your nail pleaseeee comment because that is my next goal.

-K

Fear, Faith & the End of an Era

Fear, Faith & the End of an Era

This week marks the end of an era; on Friday I will walk across the stage at my college graduation and receive the most expensive piece of paper I will ever own in my life (unless I decide to eventually go to grad school, but that’s an entirely different topic). I’m excited, I’m nervous, I’m happy, but, above all, I’m terrified. Lately, when I tell people I’m graduating this week, their response is something along the lines of, “OH! How wonderful! So what are you doing after college?” Well sir/ma’am, that’s a great question. So great of a question that I don’t have an answer. Actually, I do have an answer: I want to travel, I want to see the world, I want to experience all that I possibly can right now with the man of my dreams. Then, I want to land the perfect dream job and build a fabulous career, get married and start a beautiful family. There’s only one problem… what I want and what is actually going to happen are two very different things.

From a young age, we get these ideas in our heads of what we want to do and who we want to be. At 18 we’re supposed to decide what we want to do with our lives, but what they don’t tell you is that college is where you completely lose yourself and often don’t come out the same person as you came in as. I’m relatively the same person as I was when I started college, but I have changed so much even in the past six months. Most of this change is good brought on from good and bad experiences and lessons learned; however, I have grown more and more fearful throughout college. I have no idea where this fear has come from or why I have it, but I have struggled with it my whole life. The even bigger problem is that it’s not just one fear, it’s multiple and they fill my head on a daily basis. This is supposed to be the most exciting time of my life, and yet my anxiety holds me back from letting the happiness take over.

From snakes to clowns to losing people I love from death or some other God-forsaken circumstance, I know that so many people feel the exact same way I do. While I’m well aware that many people share the same fears that I do, I still feel so alone. Lately my biggest fear has really come to light with how much change I’m currently going through in life is the fear of failure. Ever since I was young I have been so terrified of failing in life and disappointing my parents and my loved ones; so much so that my anxiety tears me up inside regardless of how ridiculous my thoughts are. It’s almost as though I’m a prisoner in my own mind, unable to escape from the fears and anxieties.

Because of all of this and more, I’ve been relying on my faith immensely. There’s something so comforting knowing that there is an all-powerful God who loves you and is always on your side no matter what life throws your way. I grew up in the Catholic church, but I never knew how much all those years of Catholic education have paid off in my faith. Even after losing myself for a while, I know that I am welcomed back to God with open arms. This Bible verse, in particular, has really helped me get through this time: “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” Isaiah 41:10. Though I am continuing to work on bettering myself, everyday is a little better than the last with God as my light, and my friends and family by my side, everything is starting to look up.

Take care of each other and God bless.

-K

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Top Fitness Blogs

Top Fitness Blogs

Hey there! As previously mentioned, I’ve decided to make a few lifestyle changes as a means to live a healthier life. I began following a wide range of health, fitness, and nutrition blogs a few months ago and decided to share a number of my absolute favorites with y’all.

FitSugar// Is there anything PopSugar can’t do? From pop culture to fashion to food, and, my personal favorite, fitness, they have it all. If I only have a short period of time to read, Fitsugar is my go-to site for anything and everything.

The Fashionably Fit// This UK-based blog combines fashion and fitness into one of the most aesthetically pleasing layouts I’ve ever laid my eyes on. Recipes, gym wear, everyday fashion, Jidy provides it all!

Yoga by Candace// I absolutely love yoga so it’s quite fitting that I follow a blog about it. Candace also provides recipes, clothing shops, and 30-day programs for FREE! Did I mention that she also has her own app to take with you on the go?

Lululemon Blog// I just love Lululemon and everything they do. Not only do they have fabulous articles, but they also have great podcasts.

Namasté!

-K

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So It’s 2016…

So It’s 2016…

So it’s 2016, the champagne has been popped, the calories have been ingested,  we’re all in desperate need of a detox, and there are a slew of people posting their resolutions. I, personally, despise New Years resolutions because, frankly, no body ever sticks to them. Furthermore, someone needs to put an end to the awful phrase “new year, new me.”

Sure, you may want to improve yourself or a specific part of yourself in the upcoming year, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Instead of dubbing it a “New Years Resolution,” call it a goal or, even better, a lifestyle change. Doing so makes a world of difference in your long-term perspective on that goal, and sheds a more positive light on said goal.

Let’s face it, it’s really only another day in another year, that does not make anyone any different than they already are. No more growing lazy, no more excuses, and no more unfulfilled promises; it’s time to stick to your goals and change your mindset. It’s time for new year, improved me.

2016 is a big year for me: college graduation, getting my first “real deal” job, travelling to Europe for the first time, moving back in with my parents (which is an adventure in itself), and so much more. I intend on having many goals throughout the year, in fact, keep an eye out for a blog post about my goals coming soon!

Have a blessed week!

-K

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