2018: Year In Review

Long time no chat, friends! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season filled with family, friends, fun, and food. I most certainly did, which is why I haven’t been very active on my social channels nor the blog. I feel as though the holidays are a great time to unplug from the digital world, and focus on the things that mean the most to us. 2018 was a whirlwind to say the least – it started off slowly for the first six months, and then before I knew it, December snuck up on me.

Memories: A Brief Overview

So many incredible things happened this year – I’ve reached new highs and learned so much with Keeping It Kourtney, I’ve seen my boyfriend more than I have in the last 3 years combined since his new move, my little brother graduated from college, and my best friend got engaged! One of my personal achievements this year was this March when I successfully planned and executed my first out of state trade show for work. Additionally, I’ve grown a lot stronger in my faith in recent years, but this year, I made the decision to put it into practice more, which has made a huge positive impact in my daily life.

Lesson Learned: My Biggest Achievement

As much as I hate to admit it, I often find that I compare myself to other bloggers. I’ve based some of my content on things that I think want people to hear, rather than things I’m passionate about, and I allow the opinions of other people to cloud my own judgement of myself and what I should/shouldn’t post out of fear of rejection or criticism. The last two years, I’ve tried desperately to keep up the stereotypical “blogger image”, and pushed out content that I wasn’t 100% happy with just to keep up the consistency. Bottom line: It simply wasn’t me.

Earlier this year, I took the PRISM course by PR Couture, which made me deep dive into what exactly my brand is, and — in turn — who I am and how I want to portray myself to the world through my blog. While I completed the course a few months ago, the projects that I worked on didn’t fully resonate with me until shortly after when I began doubting my blogging ability. I’d been at this for about 5 1/2 years, and I had no paid collaborations or ad posts on Instagram to show for it. There’s nothing that will bring you to a hard stop like doubt and anxiety, and it really made me reflect on my history as a blogger. You know what I discovered? It’s totally okay, because that’s not why I started blogging in the first place.

Writing is my greatest passion, and I love being able to share my thoughts and ideas here. The internet is all about connecting and creating a community, and I’ve decided that I no longer want to push out content just to consistently create content — I want to write with a purpose. That’s why, when I was overcome with doubt, I didn’t give up on blogging. No, I don’t have the most readers nor an abundance of Instagram followers, but is that what this is really all about? Not at all. I decided to let my faith and passion outweigh the fear in me, and continue on because it was something that I love.

Keeping It Kourtney has been my space for nearly six years now, and it’s constantly evolving with me and my life. As a 24 year old woman navigating adulthood with a passion for writing, fashion, beauty, travel, food, and so much more that I haven’t even touched yet, I hope to connect with other like-minded women who can relate to what I’m thinking, doing, and feeling.

Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox now. Needless to say, this was a MAJOR breakthrough for me this year, and I’m beyond proud of myself for overcoming the mental hurdles that tend to accompany blogging and social media.

A Concise Travel Summary

2018 was a big year in travel for me. Between return trips to places like Chicago and Mackinac Island to new locations including Atlanta and Vegas, my wanderlust was definitely fulfilled. In February, I partook in a road trip to Chicago with my mom, brother, and family friends to Chicago to see Hamilton. March took me to Atlanta, Georgia for a trade show for work. I flew out to visit my boyfriend in Maryland this May, where I returned to Frederick and Washington D.C., but also got to explore Baltimore and — one of my new favorites — Annapolis. Our family road trip in June provided me the chance to relish the beauty of my home state, and return to Traverse City and Mackinac Island. My final trip of the year was to Las Vegas this October; while it was a short trip, we had a blast and I can’t wait to return in 2019.

In Closing…

Thank you for sharing another year with me in my little corner of the internet. I may not post as much as I’d like to balancing work and family life, but if there is anything my readers take away from this particular post, it’s that I fully intend on putting my best foot forward coming into the new year. 2019 is bringing out the raw, unadulterated part of me that I’ve been itching to put out there for a while, but didn’t know how. I look forward to sharing this with you in the years to come.

Cheers to the new year!

-K.

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Week in Review, Vol I

Week in Review

Hi Friends!

It’s definitely been a minute since I’ve had a chance to sit down and work on a post, but – truth be told – life gets crazy while trying to balance my full-time job, personal life, and blogging all while maintaining my sanity. Although I’ve been on this little hiatus,  I’ve been working on some projects behind the scenes of the blog, so stay tuned for some exciting news, big changes, and fun, new content coming soon!

I’ve decided to start this new Week in Review series as a “revamp” of the former Keeping It Current and monthly playlist series, but instead of just talking about myself, I’ll be sharing content relevant to my readers including books, new tv shows that have sparked my interest, new music, interesting articles, shopping/sales, and more. I’m always open to hearing what you guys want to see on the blog so feel free to leave a comment on my posts or dm me on my social channels; whether it’s something you’re looking to read about from my perspective in a post or a featured quick read in these Week in Review posts, I want to hear from you!

Quick Reads:

What I’m Reading: “The Heiresses” by Sara Shephard

What I’m Watching: Southern Charm Season 5 on Bravo, Versailles Season 2 on Netflix

What I’m Listening To:

Want You Back // 5 Seconds of Summer

Youngblood // 5 Seconds of Summer

Alone // Halsey

Familiar // Liam Payne, J. Balvin

Bloom // Troye Sivan

Kamikaze // WALK THE MOON

Shopping:

Looking Ahead: Be sure to check out my Instagram story in the next few days to take a survey on what you’d like to see on the blog this summer. And be sure to keep your eye out for my big announcement!

– K.

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50 Ways to Practice Self Care

50 Ways to Practice Self Care

Self love is a huge buzzword lately. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I recently shared a post stating that I have always struggled with it. Once I reflected a bit on my post and thoughts about the topic, I really started to think about what things I currently do and what I could do to aid with my practice. I consulted some of my closest friends on ways that they cope with the bad days, and practice self care. Creating self love takes time, but practicing everyday helps to improve it little by little.

Here are 50 ways that my friends and I practice self care:

  1. Take a bubble bath
  2. Read a book
  3. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi
  4. Yoga
  5. Meditation
  6. Turn on some of your favorite music and have a solo dance party (or with your friends if you so choose)
  7. Light one of your favorite scented candles
  8. Unplug for at least an hour
  9. Go for a walk or run
  10. Do a hair or face mask (or both!)
  11. Splurge on that item you’ve been eye-ing to help amp up your wardrobe
  12. Ask for help from friends and family
  13. Write out your thoughts and feelings
  14. Focus your energy into a workout
  15. Clean and organize
  16. Watch one of your favorite movies
  17. Have a glass of wine
  18. Cuddle with your pet or a loved one
  19. Laugh – put on one of your favorite comedy movies or tv shows
  20. Stop comparing yourself to others
  21. Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water
  22. Forgive yourself
  23. Remove toxic people from your life
  24. Go on an adventure to a place you’ve always wanted to visit
  25. Stop making excuses
  26. Search for the positives in every situation, regardless of how hard that may be
  27. Take an online (or in-person, if you prefer) class to expand your knowledge on a topic
  28. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you may be feeling, even cry if you need to
  29. Pray if it fits your beliefs
  30. Take a nap
  31. Indulge in a sweet treat
  32. Plan a girls’ night out with your best friends
  33. Eat healthy
  34. Get creative and try your hand at a Pinterest craft
  35. Have a night in with your SO
  36. Check an item off of your to do list that you’ve been avoiding
  37. Try something new be it an activity, recipe or restaurant
  38. Practice gratitude
  39. Bring the outdoors indoors and buy yourself some flowers or a house plant
  40. Get a massage
  41. Watch the sunset
  42. Recite positive affirmations to yourself
  43. Change up your look with a new hairdo or applying your makeup differently
  44. Play a relaxation Pandora station
  45. Cook a meal featuring your favorite comfort foods
  46. Be mindful
  47. Call a loved one you haven’t spoken to in a while
  48. Stop feeling guilty for taking some time for yourself
  49. Switch things up by creating a new routine
  50. Remember that you’re doing the best you can, and focus on your progress

 

Do you have some self care tips that didn’t make the list? Leave a comment below!

-K.

Follow Friday

Hello and Happy {FINALLY} Friday!

I’m not going to lie to you — this has been one of the absolute longest weeks ever, but it’s finally time for the weekend and I’m so excited to share with you some of my favorite blogger friends to follow! These ladies inspire me with every post, and I hope you love them just as much as I do. I’m sharing their Instagrams on my Insta stories today as well, so be sure to give them and myself a follow to stay up-to-date on our blogs (& lives)!

Bri Car

I know you’ve seen me talk about this lady before in several of my previous posts! On her blog, Bri highlights everything from her favorite haunts in Detroit to music to her own personal experiences in her As Told By Bri series, and so much more. Being one of my personal friends, she pushes me as both an individual and blogger in ways that I never thought possible – never in a million years did I ever think I’d hold not one, but two successful side hustles. Stop in to Bri Car here!

Lauren State of Mind

A friend and fellow blogger that I admire so much is Miss Lauren – or LJ, as I like to call her – the beautiful brains behind Lauren State of Mind. Of course, I love to read up on all of my friends’ and fellow bloggers’ adventures, but one of my absolute favorite things about LJ’s blog is her One Word series. This is easily one of the most well-written, and thought provoking series that I have ever read. Her raw depiction of her encounters in everyday life put into a simple, singular word will make you reflect on your own life and daily practices.

ReadyJesset **coming soon**

A blog that has yet to be launched, but I’m anticipating due to discussion to be incredible is another blogger friend of mine, Jessah’s, travel blog ReadyJesset. On her blog, you will find tips for traveling to countries such as France, Cuba, and Belgium. Additionally, Jessah will be sharing her experiences of traveling solo, as well as those of her friends! Be on the lookout for her blog!

Comment your favorite blogs below, including your own — I’d love to read them!

-K.

Top Summer Trends

Hello and Happy June!

It is finally warm in Michigan which means it’s time to start breaking out your summer clothes and read up on this year’s trends. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, while I don’t necessarily “abide” by trends, I like to take them and make them my own. Luckily, this season has some of my favorite trends of all time and I can’t wait to work them this summer!

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Gingham // It’s no surprise, that one of my favorite classic prints is at the top of my trend list this summer. Generally it’s one of those prints that people associate with a more preppy style; However, thanks to the help of companies such as Zara, gingham is becoming more versatile like this Zara dress.

Bell Sleeves // I’m LOVING this trend right now, and maybe spending a little too much money on it as well! Bell sleeves pair great with the off-the-shoulder trend that’s also in season. You can get both in this dress I just posted on my Instagram. PS – it’s SUPER affordable and currently on sale!

Retro Swimwear // One piece and high-waisted bathing suits are back! I never thought I would be loving this trend as much as I am now. I recently purchased one similar to this one and I can’t wait to rock it on my upcoming vacation.

Statement Earrings // The bigger, the bolder, the better. That seems to be the motto accompanying the latest jewelry craze. I’ve had my eyes on these tassel earrings and these bauble drop earrings both from Francesca’s.

Wrap Dresses // Midi, maxi, mini, you simply can’t go wrong with a wrap dress. They work for any occasion, which is especially convenient now that wedding season is upon us. I absolutely adore this gorgeous pale blue maxi wrap dress from Asos. It’s definitely a possibility for my uncle’s wedding later this year.

What are some of your favorite trends that you are trying out this summer?

-K.

Keeping it Current

Keeping it Current

Just today I was converted into a huge Madewell fan. I swear their jeans are absolute magic; I have an odd body shape, and I’ve never had jeans fit me properly. But, let me tell you, when I slipped into my first pair of Madewell jeans today, I became a believer.

Recently, I tried my first bath bomb from Lush Cosmetics (this one to be exact) and it’s great for those days when you want a relaxing bath, but don’t necessarily want to be covered in bubbles. My only complaint with this bath bomb in particular is that you have to clean the rose petals out of the bottom of the tub when you’re done.

I’m still obsessing over Justin Timberlake’s opening number of Can’t Stop the Feeling at the Oscars. If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the video, I promise you won’t regret it. Plus, if you’re anything like me, the song will get you on your feet and dancing as if you’re one of his backup dancers.

If you don’t already, feel free to follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. I usually follow back if I’m paying attention to notifications, and I give insights into my personal life on all of them. Tonight in particular, I’m live tweeting the Oscars, and I think I’m really funny so go check it out!

-K.