To Sparkle Punch...

That is the question

High Five for Friday: December 15

JessComment

Hooray, we made it! Here's what put the sparkle into this week:

  • Saturday turned into CATURDAY because I got to meet my cousin's precious new kitten, Leo! He's two pounds of tuxedo cuteness that climbed right into my lap and fell asleep. I was basically like, "Welp, I live with you guys now!" 
๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญย 

๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญย 

๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ย 

๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ย 

  • I successfully drove in the (very light) snow on Saturday! The biggest accomplishment in this was that my aunt offered to pick me up--a perfect opportunity for me to avoid driving--but I turned her down and drove myself! 
IMG_5222.JPG
  • Here's something I never thought I'd say: I ordered a jumpsuit this week! I'd been sort of looking for one, as an alternative to the usual pants or a dress for the holidays, but all the jumpsuits I'd seen online were too intense. Plunging necklines, super-wide legs, bedazzled accents... nah bro. I finally found this tame one on Kohlsโ€™ website, and it arrived in two days! Now, it's super comfy, but Iโ€™m not sure that I can pull it off... I need some more time to mull over this very important decision.

 

  • This week has been disco/funk week in my car. Arenโ€™t you jealous you donโ€™t get to hear to these jams on repeat too?! ๐Ÿ˜‚
IMG_5349.PNG
  • Lastly, I'd really been wanting to get my nails done (I've been so lazy about painting my nails lately blah), and I finally did on Thursday night! It was delightful! I went with a bright red with a bit of shimmer that is perfect for the holidays!

 

Hope you guys have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

December 2017 Goals

JessComment
FullSizeRender.jpg

I had hoped to have this post up last week, but getting sick derailed that plan, so here we are!

FullSizeRender.jpg

Only one goal on the white board this month because I really want to catch up on my yoga teacher training homework before going back in January... and because I want leave some space for inevitable holiday craziness!

Now let's see how November's goals went:

1. Figure out Christmas cards: CHECK! Bonus that they've all been sent out! (With the exception of yours, Mica, because I want to go to the post office and get the right postage to Australia!)

2. Stick to my budget: Weeeell... this did not go great in November. But I've since paid off the credit card charges I racked up last month, and I've been much more responsible through the first part of December (even transferring some money to savings!๐Ÿ˜ฎ), so it's all good.

Now, I have a confession and a serious question for you guys. I created this space to try to cultivate and adopt a more positive outlook because I'm really a pretty negative person. I'm a pro at getting in my own way and talking myself out of things. So I've definitely fallen off with my Word of the Year "out of hiding." I set these goals at the beginning of the year when I'm all bright-eyed and optimistic, and then they start to make me angry as the year goes on. Like "WHY do I need to venture out of hiding? Eff that!" So we're at that stage in the twelfth month. I've still been going to yoga TT, and I've seen some friends recently, but I've mostly gone full hermit and am belligerent about it. (Like "YOUR MOM should get out of hiding!!" territory. It's not pretty.) I tend to not set bigger goals for myself because Iโ€™m so often in that petulant mindset of โ€œWhatever, itโ€™s not like Iโ€™m going to do X anyway.โ€ ๐Ÿ™„ Last month's angel card of "freedom" kind of similarly set me off because I don't want to acknowledge that I'M my own jail keeper--I so easily lapse into being angry and blaming other people and things for the state of my life. I'm not proud of it, but it's the dark and twisty truth.

In some ways, I feel like Iโ€™ve given up. Not in a suicidal way, but in a "Well, this is my life and I can't do anything to change it" kind of way because change so often turns my anxiety up to 11. (For instance, I donโ€™t think itโ€™s a coincidence that I went inpatient three weeks after starting a new job in 2013.) As far as I've come since 2013, I know I need to go further but am afraid to let myself. And then that is usually accompanied by the cycle of anger and self-sabotage. UGH.

So I'm curious: how do you guys set goals and stick to them? How do you quiet the negative self-talk? (I'm especially thinking of you, Bri, because you are so good at tackling big and small goals alike.)

This month's Healing with the Angels card is the opposite of where I'm at right now: serenity. Like "signs" and "freedom," I've pulled this card more than once in the short time I've had my deck. And this is the thing that always jumps out at me when I read the blurb in the booklet:

FullSizeRender.jpg

Huh. I always feel like I need to be calmer/in a better place before I can sit down and meditate etc., but I guess that's not the case. Maybe it's like that idea that the less you want to do X, the more you need to do X. Hmm...

 

Linking up with Nicole at Writes Like a Girl!

High Five for Friday: December 8

JessComment

I've been sick all week and haven't left the house since Sunday, so this week is even duller than usual! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Let's see what brought the sparkle:

  • Like making a few helpful adjustments to this picture of my friendโ€™s cat, Chuck!
IMG_5214.JPG
  • Our family Christmas party was on Saturday, and among the many wonderful people I got to see were a few of my grade school friends who I hadn't seen in ages! (Are other people still friends with their grade school friends? I've heard that this isn't a thing?)

 

  • Have we talked about how I tend to feel a lot of anger while doing yoga? Well, I had yoga teacher training on Sunday, and I was very proud of myself because when I started feeling angry, I got up and left the yoga class we were in, and punched a chair in another room for a little bit! And then I came back and got into child's pose, feeling a lot calmer. It was very freeing!

 

  • As much as I still struggle with yoga, I'm pretty sad that YTT isnโ€™t happening again until January. I love the ladies who are doing YTT with me, and I really enjoy being able to get away for a few hours or days a month and learn about something, rather than just doing my usual weekend errands and chores at home.

 

  • And lastly, this is definitely meโ€”if it were "stalking cats" instead of "chasing cats." ๐Ÿ˜ฌ๐Ÿ˜ฌ
IMG_5182.JPG

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

High Five for Friday: December 1

JessComment

I missed you guys last Friday! I hope you had a wonderful two weeks! Now let's see if I can remember what put the sparkle into the last two weeks...

  • Thanksgiving was great! I watched the parade, fell asleep on the couch while the Dog Show was on, pregamed with stuffing while watching General Hospital, and then went over to my aunt's where I bugged her precious cats and we all played Family Feud. #blessed
IMG_4941.JPG
  • Then on Black Friday, I stayed in my pajamas all day, wrote out Christmas cards, and watched The Karate Kid marathon on AMC (with Love Actually and The Holiday mixed in too--TV was really at the top of its game). IT WAS GLORIOUS. In case you didn't know (because why the heck would you?), I was absolutely in love with Ralph Macchio after seeing The Outsiders when I was 10, so The Karate Kid has a special place in my heart.
SWOON.

SWOON.

To this day, Pops and I will randomly yell, "This school SUCKS, man! It sucks!" for no reason at all and launch into impromptu renditions of "Best of the Battle." I would still pick the lanky, dark-haired, nerdyish guy over the blonde jock any day of the week, haha. (Although I did really enjoy William Zabka on HIMYM, and I hate myself a little for it. Zabkatage, indeed.)

 

  • Did you guys score any good deals on Black Friday or Cyber Monday? I actually only took advantage of one--the Glossier 20% off + free shipping sale! I'd been coveting the things I got (Cherry Balm Dot Com and Generation G lipstick in Like) for awhile, so I literally put in my order as soon as I found out about the sale at like 1:45 AM haha! I still love my Lipsense, but as a lip product junkie, having new things to play with has been very exciting! Especially because both colors are very buildable and can be as boring as I want them to be! ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰
FullSizeRender.jpg
  • Does anybody else watch The Goldbergs? (Do people outside Philly watch this show?) I recently got Hulu, so I've been watching it a lot lately. Barry just kills me. He doesn't even have to be doing anything and I'll crack up, but stuff like this is just ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ‘Œ.
barry.gif
  • Lastly, the end of November marked the end of my month of outfits on IG! Thanks to everyone who liked and commented over the past month! ๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’–(PS: This is the other sweater I bought at Primark in November. I couldn't find it, or the cardigan I got, on their website.)

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

November 2017 Budget

JessComment

Well, I did not repeat October's no-spend success!

IMG_5090.JPG

 

  1. Rib Drape Collar Cardigan (Primark): $14 - gift card = $0
  2. Balm Dot Com in Cherry (Glossier): $12 - $3 (20% off your purchase Black Friday sale) = $9
  3. Generation G lipstick in Like (Glossier): $18 - $3 (20% off your purchase Black Friday sale) = $15
  4. DevaCurl One Condition (Ulta): $22 - Ultamate rewards = $19

Not pictured:

  1. Super Stretch Skinny Jeans (Primark): $15
  2. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer mini (Sephora): $13
  3. Egyptian Magic All-Purpose Skin Cream (Target): $24 - gift card = $0
  4. Lanolips Tinted Balm in Perfect Nude (Ulta): $14
  5. Stitch Interest sweater (Primark): $11 - gift card = $6

TOTAL: $91

Gifted: Senegence Dark Circle Eye Treatment

I didnโ€™t feel like I went too crazy in November (only two impulse buys!), so the total snuck up on me. Curiously, I bought all but one of these nine things in the last two weeks... after I had to stop taking the medication Iโ€™d started in October. Hmm... I guess I now know how much it was helping to keep my spending in check!

Onto the purchases! Because I want to wear the pair of Primark Super Stretch Skinny Jeans that I bought in August every day, I decided to pick up a second pair! They are so soft and stretchy--almost as good as wearing leggings, which is basically the dream.

In a similar vein, the DevaCurl One Condition and NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer were repurchases of things I had run out of.

I had been wanting to try the Glossier lip products for awhile (I already have and love the Balm Dot Com in Original), and I couldnโ€™t help myself once they had their Black Friday 20% off your purchase + free shipping sale. (Literally the only Black Friday sale I took advantage of!) But it just arrived Monday (HOW did it get here so fast?!), so I don't have much feedback on them yet. The cherry is very red in the tube but subtle on the lips, like youโ€™ve just had a cherry Tootsie Pop ala Becky โ€œThe Iceboxโ€ Oโ€™Shea. (Who knew she was my makeup inspo?) And despite being matte, the Generation G lipstick is not wildly dry-feeling and annoying! And the color is very buildable, which is perfect when you're a nude lip addict like myself. ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ

The two total impulse purchases were the Lanolips and the Egyptian Magic. I got the Lanolips before I sprung for the Glossier goods, so I might end up returning it. And the Egyptian Magic was something I'd heard good things about and happened to stumble upon while my face was feeling painfully dry and tight last week. The day after I first used it, my face already felt much better, so I'm impressed thus far!

Lastly, Becky was kind enough to gift me a tester of the Senegence Dark Circle Eye Treatment to try out for her VIP group! I've never gotten anything remotely "gifted" or "c/o" before, so I feel like a very legit blogger right now! ๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿ˜‚

High Five for Friday: November 17

JessComment

First of all, I'm so sorry that I haven't been responding to comments as quickly(...ish ๐Ÿ˜‚) as I normally do. I'm hoping to catch up this weekend!  

And now, on with the sparkle!

  • On Saturday night, Pops and I saw Bob Dylan. Now, I love classic rock. But I've never gotten the Dylan appeal, and I know thatโ€™s sacrilegious. I do like a few weird songs of his (all post-motorcycle accident, curiously enough--"Lay Lady Lay," anyone? "The Man in Me"?), but not the ones that everyone is gaga over. Well, Pops really wanted to see him live and convinced me to go on the "This is a chance to see musical history and he might be dead soon!" ticket. And it was the weirdest show I've ever been to. BUT his opening act was MAVIS STAPLES! And that I was pumped about! I love "I'll Take You There," and the fact that the Staples Singers are in The Last Waltz, and that her father was also known as "Pops"! (Sadly, my Pops's first name is not Roebuck.) And she was a delight! She had everyone up dancing and singing along. I checked out her wiki after the show and apparently, she once turned down Bob's hand in marriage, which makes me love her even more!
  • Hall and Oates being on the wall at the Tower also made me happy.
IMG_4680.JPG
  • On Sunday morning, I had to go to Reading, and I was miraculously not running behind, but then I saw a cat, so you know it was all downhill from there. At first, I thought it was the triumphant return of Calico Pinky, but I became skeptical once I realized she was missing her namesake pink collar. (Unless she chewed it off and ran for freedom!) I spotted this Faux Pinky from our second-floor window, which is a good thing, considering the amount of shrieking that ensued!

ย 

  • On the topic of cats, I saw this on IG this week and was like, "Yep, that would be ideal for me!โ€ #FutureMotherOfTheYear

Coco wanted to send everyone a Monday smile!

A post shared by Julie Zahradnik (@princesscoco_foreverhome) on

  • Lastly, I ordered my Christmas cards this week, hooray!! They should be here in time for Thanksgiving, so I can carry on my write-out-Christmas-cards-on-Thanksgiving tradition!

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

High Five for Friday: November 10

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this week!

  • I was away at a much-needed healing retreat last Thursday through Sunday. I feel like it cracked open some things that need attention in therapy, which is especially good considering how โ€œstuckโ€ Iโ€™ve been feeling.

 

  • I'm documenting my outfits again on Instagram this month! Because I was off on Monday, I enlisted Pops to be my photographer, and we found this pretty tree! Having a real live photographer (versus a timer and tripod) really helps! ๐Ÿ˜‚
  • I also wanted to see some cat friends on my day off (ok and every day), so I made Pops detour to Petsmart on our way to the Giant. Look at this precious Calico angel! 
๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉย 

๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉย 

  • The fall leaves are just ridiculous right now. I'm perpetually the heart-eyes emoji while driving to work or yoga these days. 

 

  • Grey's 300th (!!) episode aired last night, and I LOVED IT SO MUCH. (No surprise there, as it was really a giant love letter to the early days of the show, and seasons 1-5 are my fave.) Poor Pops was lost in all the throwbacks ("Wait, I thought Izzie was dead!" "Whaaat? No!"), while I was all like, "OMG this is totally the song that plays when Mer has to rip Cristina out of her wedding dress!" #sendhelp Oh, and I legit teared up at Jackson's speech at the end, no shame. I only started watching this show in 2014, but my love affair is clearly still going strong!

ย 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

November 2017 goals

JessComment
IMG_4253.PNG

Since I'm not going to be home the first two weekends in November, and then it's basically the holidays, I'm only setting two goals this month: 

FullSizeRender.jpg

1. Figure out Christmas cards: I know hardly anyone sends Christmas cards these days, but I love them, and it just doesn't feel like Christmas without them! (PS: BLOGGER FRIENDS, let me know if you want to exchange cards!!) I usually try to write them out over Thanksgiving weekend, to really get myself into the holiday spirit--hence the need figure out the card sitch before December

2. Stick to my budget: I did SO WELL in October with not blowing my extra money or putting a ton of charges on my credit card. I really amazed myself! ๐Ÿ˜‚ I have my 11/1-15 budget set up and know what my financial limits are for the next 15 days. I also started writing out known expenses for 11/16-30, so that I know what the consequences will be if I don't stick to my budget right now... and to also see that there is light at the end of the tunnel (since I don't have yoga TT in the second half of November, which cuts down on some of my expenses)!

 

Let's see how my October goals went:

1. Get 8 hours sleep: I didn't do too bad! I pretty consistently got 7+ hours sleep, and even got 8 hours NINE times!! (And not only on the weekends!) ๐ŸŽ‰๐Ÿ˜ฎ

2. Try envelope system and stick with the amounts I budget: As I said above, CHECK! I did go my own way with the envelope system, though, opting instead for colored paper clips for each category of cash in my wallet. 

3. Just show up: I totally forgot this was a goal! But I was somewhat social, and I kept going to yoga TT (without always have perfectionism-fueled meltdowns!), so that counts for something, right?

 

It wasn't too hard to get out of hiding this month, as I had yoga TT twice and also met up with several friends (Timmi! Deena! Paulina!).

 

Last month's Healing with the Angels oracle card was "Signs." Picking just one card for the whole month really helped me to focus on it and in fact see some signs! Such as suddenly having "Free Bird" stuck in my head when it was particularly relevant to a therapy session, and getting tingly when talking about certain next steps with my other therapist. We've also been discussing things like intuition, energy, and signs from the universe in yoga teacher training, so it's all coming together! Oh, and the number 13 has been showing up a lot lately too--it was the lane I went through at the tolls last Sunday, I saw it in someone's tattoo, and XIII is my tarot soul card

This month's card, Freedom, is absurdly perfect for where I'm at. I often feel trapped--it's really a huge source of anxiety for me and has been coming up a lot lately. So the fact that the Freedom card said this seemed like a SIGN (see what I did there?):

 

UGH crushed it ๐Ÿ’ช

UGH crushed it ๐Ÿ’ช

Linking up with Nicole at Writes Like a Girl!

ย 

High Five for Friday: November 3

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this week:

  • Timmi and I had a wild Friday night of Moana, puppy snuggles, and tarot card readings on the one day she was in PA before heading back to Chicago! We learned that my soul card is Death because of course it is. (But singing "What can I say execpt we're dead soon" from Moana was very cathartic.)
IMG_4092.JPG

I also got the Hermit, which really feels like it should be my soul card, tbh. ๐Ÿ˜‚

#squadgoals

#squadgoals

Although it's obviously a bit hilarious to have Death as your soul card (rather than just a card plucked at random during a reading), I'm ok with it. For starters, it's number 13. And I do have a strange relationship with death, which has pushed me to start this blog, get help, etc. By virtue of my past suicidality, Death has had a significant, but these days positive, impact on my life. So I can see why we might be connected, Mr. Death Card and I.

 

  • I had some fall fun this week! First with a pretty orange tree during our yoga TT lunch break and then with a red tree that happened to be right across the street from my therapist. ๐Ÿ˜
IMG_4322.JPG
IMG_4324.JPG
IMG_4323.JPG
  • I got to sleep in a yurt at yoga TT on Saturday night! It was so cute and cozy! If only I'd had a ton of stuff from Sky Mall, I could have been doing some Tom Haverford-level glamping!
IMG_4321.JPG
  • Tuesday was such an annoying day. It's my new work-from-home day, but our Wi-Fi randomly went down in the morning, and I couldn't fix it on my own, and Verizon said they'd have to send someone out to fix it the next day. GRRR. So I decided that I would go to therapy and then just go into the office in the afternoon. Well, I'm on my way to work when Pops (who had been out in the morning) calls and says that he basically jiggled some wires and fixed the whole thing. GRRRRRR. By the time I got home, I was like, "SORRY KIDS, I'M BUSTING INTO THE HALLOWEEN CANDY!" Thank god it was Halloween--I needed some Reese's and Snickers in my life!

ย 

  • Ok, so the Dodgers lost. And I'm actually sad that baseball is over, so I've def lost it. But let's look at something positive. In 2016, I went to my first Cubs game, and we all know how they fared that season.
IMG_4352.JPG

Then this year, I went to my first Dodgers game, and they made it to the World Series.

IMG_4353.JPG

So basically, I'm magic. That's my takeaway here. ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿผโœจ

ย 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

High Five for Friday: October 27

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this week!

  • As I turned onto our street on Sunday night, I spotted a pair of white paws disappearing into our neighbor's bushes!! I immediately parked and ran to investigate! Unfortunately, though, it was Cinny aka Tina, who never wants anything to do with me. Womp. Carry on, wayward cat. :( But I did get to see her speed-waddle away, which is always adorable.

 

  • Then on Tuesday, I caught this gal sauntering through our yard!! Brindle Pinky aka Rosalita is also scared of me, so I didn't even bother to get out of my car and smother her with affection, but regardless, it's always fun to see a cat!
  • If I miraculously manage to get out the door before 10 AM, I love listening to "Connect 3" on the classic rock station, where they play three songs and you have to figure out what they have in common. I'm always really proud of myself when I get it right, but I was ESPECIALLY proud on Monday because no one got it right, including the girl whose answer they accepted! (It's like they just admitted defeat, haha.) The three songs were "Sister Christian," "Roxanne," and "I Shot the Sheriff," and the theme was law enforcement. (Do you know why??)

 

  • Despite my love of classic rock, I've never liked "Free Bird." But I heard it on the radio last Friday morning and really enjoyed it. And then it was stuck in my head for the next two days. My therapist and I had just been talking about how I tend to hold myself hostage, so the line "Won't you fly high, free bird?" really stuck out to me in a poignant way. (I might have teared up while listening to it on my drive to Reading Saturday! #halp) It was also fitting because I drew "Signs" as my Angel card for October, and the little blurb about that card specifically mentions hearing particular songs!
IMG_4070.JPG
  •  Lastly, Pops and I have Dodgers fever! Well, mainly Pops--he is all about that SoCal life. And he genuinely likes baseball, whereas it's too much of a snooze for me until the playoffs. But I actually know the Dodgers' entire lineup! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Of course, that lineup includes longtime Phillie Chase Utley, who I like a lot more on a different team, strangely enough. (I'm never one to like "star" players.) The fact that he used "Silver Fox" as his nickname for MLB Players' Weekend (when we happened to be in CA and went to a Dodgers game) was ๐Ÿ’ฏ. Also ๐Ÿ’ฏ is Kikรฉ Hernandez's banana hoodie (oh and his ridonkulous 7 RBI game against Chicago!).

I love that there's hardly any comment on his get-up, haha. It's just nbd. 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

October 2017 Budget

JessComment

Hey, where's the collage picture of all the things I bought this month?

Oh, that's right--I didn't buy anything that would count against my shopping budget! WHAT THE WHAT.

I was able to let my financial situation dictate my shopping, rather than letting my shopping dictate my financial situation.

(Full disclosure: I also started taking a medication that helps with impulse control again, but I don't think that's the only reason why I was able to rein in my spending.) 

I think committing to a budget and getting real about how much I can actually afford to spend right now made a big difference. The shopping budget of $170 that I set back in 2014 really is not feasible now that I have a car, yoga teacher training, a higher healthcare premium, a more expensive therapist, etc. Right now, I'm lucky to have $100 left over from a paycheck after bills, and that $100 needs to cover food/eating out and anything else that I didn't preemptively budget for. Not a lot of room for shopping.

This month, I took that "extra" money out in cash for a change, and being able to see just how little I had to work with made me less inclined to spend it immediately. 

So I basically used the principles of YNAB (give every dollar a job), but on paper and in cash, which seems to hold me accountable more than using the YNAB app and debit/credit cards. 

But it was also important that I allowed myself to have a little extra money, rather than overextending myself financially (as I usually do), because itโ€™s unrealistic to think that unforeseen expenses wonโ€™t crop up over the course of the two weeks before I get paid again. I often think that it's ok to spend beyond my means when that money is going toward something "positive," like an extra therapy session, but I'm starting to see how I use that as an excuse to be irresponsible. "I have no money anyway, so what the hell? What's a few more things from Target?" I usually feel like I have no option but to start charging things or tapping into money I haven't even been paid yet, but there is another option: I can avoid setting myself up for failure by starting each month in the black and keeping in mind that that little bit of money needs to last for two weeks. 

Well, thatโ€™s whatโ€™s been helping me! What helps you guys? 

High Five for Friday: October 20

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this week!

  • Saturday was a very social day for this hermit! First up was a lovely brunch with Deena, my South Philly roommate and Sasha's owner!

ย 

  • Then former roommate #2, Paulina (my college roommate), came over and took me to The Cheesecake Factory for a belated birthday dinner! Yay for redhead reunions!

ย 

  • For Disney Week on DWTS, Val and Victoria danced to music from Steamboat Willie!! It's no exaggeration to say that Pops and I were hype AF (unlike probably everyone else haha).

Mickey's whistling while steering the boat has always cracked Pops up, so now this movie has become synonymous with him. I actually have Mickey's whistling set as Pops's ringtone on my phone!

giphy (1).gif
  • I woke up in the middle of the night on Monday feeling super nauseous, bleh. So I sought medical attention in the form of Scrubs at 2:30 in the morning and used that to distract me into feeling better. And it actually worked! Hooray!

ย 

  • And lastly, when your worlds collide!
I did actually have Grey's on when Yoga Anatomyย arrived in the mail! If only Ellen Pompeo narrated that too...

I did actually have Grey's on when Yoga Anatomy arrived in the mail! If only Ellen Pompeo narrated that too...

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

High Five for Friday: October 13

JessComment

Let's see what brought the sparkle this week!

  • On Saturday, I got my car washed (HOORAY) and went to Marshalls. I was in search of a birthday gift, so of course, I found two Christmas gifts for other people. Oh, and UNICORN + DONUT WRAPPING PAPER:
IMG_3892.JPG

I had spotted this at HomeGoods months ago, didn't buy it, cracked and went back to get it, and then couldn't find it. So I pounced when it turned up at Marshalls!

 

  • On Sunday, I spent most of the day cleaning/organizing my room and could not have been happier. (The things that you end up doing when you sit down to read!) In case there was any doubt that I'd lost my mind, I had "Everybody Dance Now" playing on repeat for hours on end as I cleaned. ๐Ÿ‘Œ
My desk has managed to stay this clean! ๐ŸŽ‰

My desk has managed to stay this clean! ๐ŸŽ‰

  • On Tuesday, I found some pretty sunflower friends near therapy!
IMG_3889.JPG
IMG_3894.JPG

ย 

  • After my flower creep, I was reunited with my dear Timmi before she jetted off to London!
Legit ride or die--she's the second friend passenger I've had in my car!

Legit ride or die--she's the second friend passenger I've had in my car!

It was so good to see her, even if it was just for chicken fingers (#SHAlife) and an hour of deliberation about where to eat while her pups used us as a jungle gym.

Wherein Mieze and I both act as Biene's ottoman.

Wherein Mieze and I both act as Biene's ottoman.

  • Lastly, I've put out my one fall decoration! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜‚
IMG_3891.JPG

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

IMG_3895.JPG

High Five for Friday: October 6

JessComment

Oh sparkle, where art thou? We need you this week. 

  • My jam this week (even before the Vegas tragedy) has been George Harrison's "Hear Me Lord." What a gorgeously powerful song. Leave it to George to make a plea to God catchy. My bffl got super into the Beatles in college and took me along with her, so we listened to all Beatles albums and solo albums in their entirety. When we got to All Things Must Pass, this song immediately drew me in--such a depth of pain and longing. Definitely where I've been this past week (although I also have the jaunty "Ballad of Sir Frankie Crisp" on my phone now too, to balance things out! You might know that one from HIMYM.).
  • Because I was away at yoga TT on Saturday, I missed the chance to reunite with one of my dear high school pals and go to homecoming (or more accurately, Heartcoming!). Our school recently changed names, and we were plotting to snag some discounted swag. Well, it pays to have friends in high places like Kate--because she's that person that everyone knows and loves, one of her friends (who conveniently works at the school) was able to hook me up with two sweatshirts! SWEET!

 

  • The thrill of moving around my therapy appointments to avoid Center City was short-lived when I remembered that I had a psychiatrist appointment in Center City on Monday. Curses! But I managed to find a (PULL-IN!) parking space for $3!! Ok, so it was a half mile walk from the doctor's office, but who cares! THE THRILL OF VICTORY! ๐ŸŽ‰


 

So I decided to bury the heavy a bit in this post, so that you can just skip on over it if you don't need more heavy in your life this week!

  • As I mentioned in my October goals post, I got pretty emotional during yoga last weekend. But afterward, I spent all of maybe four minutes talking about it to one of the facilitators (who is also a therapist), and it made me feel SO MUCH better. My default reaction to feelings is to immediately try to bury them, but giving them voice in this instance really helped me to let them go--and make room for new feelings, if that makes sense. Carrie had assured me that my feelings of sadness were welcome (like that I didn't have to be fake happy to be there), but once I talked about them, that was enough. They just sort of fizzled. Interesting.
     
  • In the same vein, my regular therapist and I talked this week about how feelings come and go. That is something I get stuck on--panic and fear that my feelings won't change. But they do. And talking about them can help. โค๏ธ

 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

October 2017 goals

JessComment
FullSizeRender.jpg

Soooo I fell behind with my August budget post thanks to vacation, and since I hadn't done any of my August goals anyway, I just rolled them into September and skipped the posting part. Now that it's October, and I've kind of done one of my August goals, I'm ready to admit defeat on the others and set some new ones!

IMG_3789.JPG

1. Get 8 hours sleep: This one is still a work in progress, but it's getting better. I've started getting into bed earlier, which certainly helps!

2. Try envelope system (and stick to the amounts I budget!): I start out with the best of budgeting intentions, but at some point during the month, that usually goes off the rails and then I get all negative and spend more freely than I should. So I'm (sort of) trying the enevlope system--but rather than actual envelopes, I found some dividers on Etsy that I've cut out and put in my wallet, and I plan to use cash for these spending categories, to see if that helps me. (I never usually have cash on me, but it's just so easy to lose track of my spending when using a debit or credit card.)

3. Just show up: Last Saturday (the last day of September), I cried my way through a yoga class and felt old feelings of hopelessness. So this goal is just a reminder to keep showing up in my life, to keep trying, and to keep questioning feelings of despair. And also to just try things (yoga, writing, etc.) with the awareness that it's okay to be mediocre, as my therapist tries to tell me!

 

I decided to pick a Healing with the Angels Oracle card for the month, and this was the one I got:

"Your angels are trying to get your attention--please notice!!"ย 

"Your angels are trying to get your attention--please notice!!"ย 

You might recall that Signs was the first Angel card I ever picked, before I even had a deck of my own! Signs definitely fits with my interest in developing my intuition and with my discussion with the tarot card reader.

 

And how about "out of hiding," my Phrase of the Year? Well, I went on vacation and pranced around Disneyland with a birthday pin! ๐Ÿ˜Š And I started yoga teacher training and went back to the yoga studio near work! 

 

Linking up with Nicole at Writes Like a Girl!

High Five for Friday: September 29

JessComment

Oh boy, let's see what put the sparkle into this week! 

  • This has not been an easy week. Feelings of hopelessness and the desire to give up creep into my life a lot. (I'm not talking about suicide here, but about more benign things, like making healthy changes in my life.) Some weeks, I am more able to fight that impulse. This was not one of those weeks. (I swear, the sparkle is coming!) 

My reflexive reaction to things is giving up. I'm not proud of it, but I often feel powerless against it. If I'm not perfect at something, I don't want to do it. Just showing up doesn't feel acceptable to me. I have to be great, or else, why bother? Which (surprise!) is SO limiting.

So my therapist encouraged me to try to embrace being mediocre at things.

For instance, instead of focusing on how bad I am at yoga, and how annoyed that makes me, just keep showing up. Just keep trying. (Conveniently, I do have Yoga Teacher Training this weekend!) 

Just keep staying alive. I get annoyed with myself for not having done more in the 4.5 years since inpatient. Like, I'm actually working on my shit now! Hello, Mental Health Gods, it's me, Jess--make me better already!

Buuut that's not how it works. I still have to keep showing up in my everyday life as much as anywhere else. And get okay with the fact that I'm more able to sparkle punch some weeks than others. There's a lot of grey that gets lost amid the black and white. And THAT'S where the sparkle can come in.

 

  • MOVING ON! I went to a tarot card reading on Friday night, and it was so freaking cool! I'm so curious about connecting with the spirits/universe and discovering my intuition. I think it might help me to feel less lost and negative about my life.

 

  • So many things the tarot card reader and I talked about related to what had been coming up for me in therapy. She urged me to remember that "I'm in the process" and encouraged me to keep my eye out for synchronicities in life. So when I was at TJ Maxx on Sunday, this picture jumped right out at me. 
Huh. How about that.

Huh. How about that.

  • This has been my jam this week. (You might also recognize it from Ice Cube's "It Was a Good Day," which is what sent me down this rabbit hole in the first place!)
  • This chick is back eeee! I don't have a ton of interest in current Grey's, but I was pumped about Teddy's return and literally shrieked when I saw her. 
image1-2.JPG

I was so sad when she left at the end of season 8, and she didn't even die! (Such a rarity on Grey's!) 

๐Ÿ˜‚โค๏ธย 

๐Ÿ˜‚โค๏ธย 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

September 2017 budget

JessComment

Well, it happened. I finally started to talk about my spending in therapy. Because I'm not happy with my financial situation, and not talking about it isn't helping, so why not? 

I've definitely shopped more in the past (like, all of 2015?), but it just feels different now. I want to be able to also save money and do bigger and better things than just go to Target. I need to get better at letting that impulsive "You totally need this!!1!" rationalization pass and focus instead on my bigger financial goals.

So that's a work in progress.ย 

I actually spent less this month than last month (๐ŸŽ‰), and let's see what I got:

IMG_3673.JPG
  1. Super Pure Serum (Glossier): $28
  2. Geometric ring (Baubles By Bets): $19
  3. LashSense with UnderSense (Lips that Last by Becky): $20
  4. Milky Jelly Cleanser (Glossier): $18

Not pictured:

  1. ShadowSense in Sandstone Pearl (Lips that Last by Becky): $22 - 10% off = $20
  2. Embrace High-Waist Laser-Cut Legging (Target): $35 on sale for $10 - gift card = $0
  3. Lipsense freebies! Fly Girl and Matte Gloss

TOTAL: $105

The Super Pure Serum has been underwhelming thus far. It just feels like water, and it doesn't seem to have had any effect on my skin (which is prone to redness, the problem Super Pure is supposed to target). With that said, I know that it's only been a few weeks, so I'm curious to see if it does anything going forward. 

I do, however, LOVE the Milky Jelly Cleanser, which feels lovely on the skin! This was actually a repurchase (bottle #2!). PS - If you want to try out Glossier, you can get 10% off your first purchase with my link!

I think geometric rings are so pretty, but I always seem to have a hard time finding them--or, at least, finding them in a small enough size (I'm a 4-5) and in rose gold (โค๏ธ). So discovering this ring on Etsy was a total win! It's exactly what I've been looking for!

I don't have much feedback on the LashSense + UnderSense because it only just came a few days ago! I've only tried the LashSense part so far and was impressed with how fully it coated my lashes in 1-2 coats. I had to rewatch one of Becky's videos to remember how to apply the UnderSense, though (๐Ÿ˜‚), so I'll give that a whirl next time! The fact that you can get both products for $20, as opposed to paying $21 for Urban Decay's similar under-lash booster (which I've done in the past!) definitely intrigued me! Plus, LashSense comes in brown--hooray!

I'm actually going to exchange the Sandstone Pearl ShadowSense for Candlelight because I want to use it as a concealer, and the Sandstone Pearl was a bit too yellow for me.

The Target leggings are awesome. I have no idea why they were on the sale rack, since they are apparently full-price online, but hey! They are comfy with those snazzy on-trend cut-outs/mesh PLUS a pocket that can fit my iPhone 7!! (I'm so glad leggings with pockets are a thing that exists now, you don't even know. ๐Ÿ™Œ) Oh, and I only have like two pairs of leggings that are made out of a wicking material (it's not like I work out normally lol), hence picking up this pair, since I will be doing yoga regularly for at least the next seven months!

And lastly, two LipSense freebies that I had earned! Although other colors and glosses appealed to me, I wanted to go with classics that I wasn't sure I'd use enough to justify paying for. Enter Fly Girl and Matte Gloss!

FullSizeRender.jpg

Fly Girl legitimately terrifies me, but a red felt like a make-up bag essential. As did the Matte Gloss, which I had previously wished I'd had when I was using First Love more! 

High Five for Friday: September 22

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this week!

  • So I started something new last Friday... yoga teacher training! Eek! You might recall that I don't love yoga and certainly don't have a consistent yoga practice, so this is a bit of a strange choice for me. But I have worked with one of the teachers for years and love her, and I figured that the structure would force me to stick with yoga instead of just taking a class every few months. Even though it's only been one weekend, I've already learned so much, especially about myself because I am not good at yoga, and I usually only do things that I feel good (or at least competent) at. Feeling like the "worst" one in a group and experiencing that vulnerability is really tough for me, so just going back each day has been a big accomplishment so far, instead of being one and done (or one and run!).
This is generally how I feel during yoga. ๐Ÿ˜‚

This is generally how I feel during yoga. ๐Ÿ˜‚

 

  • I stayed over at yoga teacher training last weekend so as to not have to drive back and forth every day, and it was like a wonderful mini vacation! On Saturday night, I did all of my favorite things: went to Target (where I found an awesome pair of leggings on sale for $10), stopped at Sheetz for some popcorn chicken (chicken nuggets and fries are 100% my guilty pleasure), came back to Netflix and chill by myself, and went to bed at 11. It was GREAT!
Don't look so surprised, cast of Haven!

Don't look so surprised, cast of Haven!

  • I also found this iPhone case at Target, and I love it! So pretty, so purple--it's perfect for me! (Rose gold and purple?! It's like Compton and Long Beach together--now you know you're in trouble! If you're my wallet, that is! ๐Ÿ’ธ)
image1-1.JPG
  • For the past five years, I've seen therapists in Center City, which was a lot more convenient when I lived in South Philly or took Septa to work (which meant coming through the city every day). But since I started driving, the act of physically getting to therapy has been a giant pain in my ass. Besides the Paperboy nature of city driving in general, you also have to search for parking, which can cost up to $30 for ONE HOUR. โ˜น๏ธ Considering my driving phobias, I didn't want to wuss out, but just how much do I have to make myself suffer? So this week, I finally asked my boss if he was okay with me switching my work from home day to Tuesdays so that I can see my therapist at a different office that's WAY WAY less annoying to drive to and always has free, non-parallel street parking. I have a hard time cutting myself some slack, as well as asking for things, so this was a major accomplishment on two counts. HOORAY!

 

  • Lastly, if you're a grammar nerd like me, you'll appreciate this Buzzfeed article. ("COMMA AS YOU ARE" OMG.) That comma cupcake makes my English major heart sing with joy.
I might have made cupcakes quoting a line from Faulkner before, so the person who made the comma cupcake is basically my soulmate.ย 

I might have made cupcakes quoting a line from Faulkner before, so the person who made the comma cupcake is basically my soulmate. 

  • Bonus because I'm OBSESSED with my dahlia! Look at how bright it is when it first blooms and then how the color fades so beautifully after a few days. ๐Ÿ˜(As you might have gathered from Instagram, I take more pictures of this beauty every day haha.)
image2.JPG
image3.JPG

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

High Five for Friday: September 15

JessComment

Let's see what put the sparkle into this blur of a week!

  • On Saturday, I made some goat friends!! Pops took me to the nearby animal sanctuary (the one he'd taken the injured bird to), and I got to meet Spike:
plus random chicken ย 

plus random chicken ย 

And Frankie:

IMG_3417.JPG

I fed them crackers, which made them love me for a few seconds (โค๏ธ), and I also got to gawk at some chickens. I was really living my best Little House on the Prairie life!

IMG_3434.JPG
  • I very nearly had a cat-free week, but then a miracle happened: one showed up at work! A gingy cat! Hanging around where the groundhogs usually are! I'm sure the ladies lunching at the restaurant under our office appreciated me frockling through the grass making kissy noises for a cat who was like "Maybe if I don't move, she won't see me..." Needless to say, he was not my biggest fan, but I got my cat fix after all!

 

ย 

  • My bffl is now rewatching Haven too (in which characters have "troubles" aka bizarre problems ranging from not feeling pain to causing physical structures to crack nbd), and we made this sad realization:
SAD BUT TRUE

SAD BUT TRUE

  • I've been in a real Lucky and Liz circa 1998 spiral this past week. (Luckily, there are people who have done God's work and compiled the whole storyline in playlists on YouTube ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œ.) Bonus that I get to hear fine, greeting-card-worthy soap lines like this:
A reasonable question.

A reasonable question.

  • And finally, there's more blooms on my dahlia!! ๐ŸŽ‰๐Ÿ’–๐ŸŽ‰

ย 

ย 

Hope you have a great weekend! xo

h54f logo square.jpg

Outfits of the month (August 2017)

JessComment

You know, I used to post more than just H54F. But for whatever reason, this year, I just haven't been able to motivate myself to blog much.

For instance, I've enjoyed documenting my daily outfits on here for the past two Augusts, but I knew that I wouldn't be able to get myself to edit and post pictures in weekly batches, as I had in the past.

Enter Instagram.

I was actually energized at the thought of posting my outfits on there every day (rather than letting the pictures pile up), so I decided to do that instead. Sometimes, you just need to find an alternative, instead trying to force yourself to do something you're not super interested in (which usually ends in not doing it at all).

An unforseen bonus to using IG was being able to talk to y'all in real time! I so loved seeing all of your likes and comments, and getting to talk about clothes and girly things on work days! (I have two coworkers, and they're both dudes, sooo...)

Here are a few of my favorite outfits from August! My job doesn't have a dress code, so most of my outfits consisted of jeans or leggings plus tees. Nothing too exciting. But the Lindsay kimono helped me to break up the monotony! 

Lindsay kimono: LulaRoe by Dre Lydon (2017) | Tank: Gap (thrifted 2011) | Jeans: Gap (2014) | Sandals: Target (2017) | Belt: Loft (2014) | Necklace: Stella & Dot (Poshmark 2017)

Lindsay kimono: LulaRoe by Dre Lydon (2017) | Tank: Gap (thrifted 2011) | Jeans: Gap (2014) | Sandals: Target (2017) | Belt: Loft (2014) | Necklace: Stella & Dot (Poshmark 2017)

I would never normally pair a kimono with dressy shorts, but I LOVED this look! I felt so sassy in SoCal!

Lindsay kimono: LulaRoe by Dre Lydon (2017) | Tank: Gap (thrifted 2011) | Shorts: Sans Souci (thrifted 2017) | Sandals: Target (2017)

Lindsay kimono: LulaRoe by Dre Lydon (2017) | Tank: Gap (thrifted 2011) | Shorts: Sans Souci (thrifted 2017) | Sandals: Target (2017)

I love a boxy shirt and skinny jeans, and this thrifted Aerie tee has been one of my faves lately!

Tee: Aerie (thrifted 2017) | Sandals: Target (2017) | Crossbody: Francesca's (2017)

Tee: Aerie (thrifted 2017) | Sandals: Target (2017) | Crossbody: Francesca's (2017)

I wouldn't normally pay $55 for, well, any clothing item, but this Carly is so cute and comfy! I just love it! (Accessorizing with an earhat optional.)

Carly dress: LulaRoe by Serena McCulloughย (2017) | Sandals: Target (2017)

Carly dress: LulaRoe by Serena McCullough (2017) | Sandals: Target (2017)

Carly dress: LulaRoe by Serena McCulloughย (2017) | Sneakers: DSW (2016) | Longchamp Le Pliage: eBay (2015)

Carly dress: LulaRoe by Serena McCullough (2017) | Sneakers: DSW (2016) | Longchamp Le Pliage: eBay (2015)

I tend to wear things I love to death, and this romper from 2015 is still a summertime staple. Such a great, comfy piece! (Also, one of my friends recently suggested wearing a bralette under a romper, to avoid that pesky bathroom nudity issue, which is GENIUS.)

Romper: Old Navy (2015) | Sandals: White Mountain (2015) | Sunglasses: Kate Spade (2012)

Romper: Old Navy (2015) | Sandals: White Mountain (2015) | Sunglasses: Kate Spade (2012)

Linking up with Laura for Confident Twosday!