Week in My Life No. 13

Happy February! The time is really flying by, although I could do with more warm weather. The past two weeks have been relatively uneventful for me. I has mostly been focusing on school/work with a few other things thrown in. Every Tuesday night we go over to our friend’s house to watch the Bachelor. Hazel gets some play time with her German Shepherd friend, Zoe. I also have been reading a lot and doing yoga almost every day. I did finally start going to some yoga classes again so I am hoping to keep that up in the coming weeks. We also have had a couple of game nights with our friends, one of which was last night Saturday. It was a blast and I am really glad I pushed myself to get out of the house.

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If you follow me on Instagram you probably know that Hazel really loves to be right there while I do yoga at home. It is so cute but can be a bit challenging!
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Hazel and Zoe hanging out. It is so great for her to have some dog friends close by and she just loves when we go visit them!

In other news I was not as productive at work/school as I was hoping to be. I ended up getting distracted with other things and then I got super sick on Thursday. I am not sure what happened but I barely left my bed and got pretty behind on a few things. Tomorrow (Monday) is kind of my make up day since I ended up having to deal with some other things on Friday. I have a pretty crazy to-do list for this week. We have also been pretty good about taking Hazel on walks. I have heard very mixed things about puppies and walks but she loves them so much so we have been doing shorter walks about every day.

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Lots of reading! I we be recapping everything I read in January later this week. 
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My favorite winter outfit. It was actually warm enough for this jacket but I think we are supposed to get lots of snow and cold for the next couple of days!
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Hazel got a super soft doggy blanket!

I did relatively well with my cooking goal this week. I made a delicious vegan soup that lasted us several days. It was a veggie stew but we added spinach, sauerkraut and avocado as garnish and it was amazing. I also baked something new yesterday which was fun! Today we hung out with some friends and made food for the Super Bowl. The half-time show was pretty amazing and there were a few great commercials.

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The amazing stew! The recipe was from Ellen and Andrew Fisher’s Epic Vegan Food.
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Waiting for Aiden to get out of an interview. Hazel and I had a great little walk around campus and I had a long chat with my mom!

Interesting articles (and many videos):

Recycling some unexpected items. All about recycling and being sustainable so this is super useful.

Patagonia fighting climate change. Patagonia is donating their huge tax cut to fund different organizations fighting climate change. This makes me so happy!!!

Ireland planting trees to fight climate change. Also this article has great organizations working to save trees.

Alexa Chung visiting the Dior atelier. It is amazing to see the time and effort people are putting into these clothes.

Shay Mitchell’s Home in AD. Yes this is another celebrity home tour because it is absolutely gorgeous!

An insightful take on aspects of Little Women with Great and the cast. Yes I went down a Little Women Youtube rabbit hole. Here is another great discussion with Greta and some of the actors.

Everlane came out with leggings. I love Everlane so I am 100% on board with this and I did order the lichen colored ones!

Reading: I am actually right in between books right now and will probably start Things in Jars later tonight. It is going to be released on the 4th of February but I got mine as a January book of the month so I am a little behind.

Wearing: I don’t really have anything new this week but I am still loving my Adidas sneakers and am debating whether or not I should invest in some Veja sneakers. I love that they are sustainable brand and I know I would wear them a ton. If you have them I would love to hear your thoughts!

Watching: In all honesty I have gone down a couple of Youtube rabbit holes and don’t feel super great about them. I sometimes find great things but I often feel like I just wasted a ton of time. On the other hand I am really looking forward to watching Taylor Swift’s new documentary!

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Overall the last few weeks were pretty mellow. I have been able to take some much needed me time and I have been prioritizing my mental health. I want to feel better and to be continuously striving to be a better person! I hope you had a great weekend and my this week bring lots of happiness, love and productivity!

Erin

Week in My Life No. 12

We are finally back in Utah and I am back into the full swing of the semester! Coming home was very bittersweet since I so loved the warmth in Captiva and am not really psyched to be back in the cold for another couple of months. On the flipside I am ready to get rolling this semester and am excited to get going on my goals for the year. I am also just so so happy to be back with Hazel. I missed her like crazy during our trip.

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The view of Gringotts Bank in Diagon Alley at Universal Studios. The Gringotts ride is so well done!

We had a couple of days left of vacation after Captiva that we spend exploring Universal Studios. I have never been to Disney or Universal and the closest thing I have done to that is maybe six flags. Aiden’s family likes to go and I was all about going to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The Harry Potter parts of both parks were amazing. I was very impressed. I also wasn’t sure how I felt about rollercoasters (I had not been on one in over ten years) but there were some fun ones. Hagrid’s Motorbike was by far the best although the wait is kind of crazy. Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade are both very well designed and include some incredible details. Wednesday, January 8th we had a relaxing morning before flying back to Denver. We spent one day in Boulder catching up with my family and packing the car. Our drive home was pretty uneventful and Hazel did a little better then the last long car ride.

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My sister and I saw Little Women while we were back in Boulder. It is beautiful and all the actresses did an incredible job (I can’t recommend enough)!

 

We had the weekend to catch up and take Hazel for her vet appointment. This past week was very full for me. I had several urgent projects that I was pushing to finish. I ended up being in the lab eight to twelve hours every day. I worked at home on Friday though which was really nice! I really love that as a grad student I have a lot of flexibility with me schedule. I have a class this semester on Tuesday and Thursday but other than that I pretty much make my own weekly schedules.

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The sunset on our drive home was beautiful. We stopped just before Bear Lake so Hazel could take a pee break.

Oh yes I do have to say that the new season of the Bachelor started and I am here for it. I have had mixed feelings about the show in the past but I have been totally on board for the past several seasons. It is so entertaining! We had a watching party with our friends on Tuesday.

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Hazel cuddling with her friend Zoe during Bachelor night.
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I gave Aiden Pandemic for Christmas and we have playing several times already! It is so fun. I am a big fan of cooperative games. We also made breakfast tacos a bunch. Trader joe’s hashbrowns, goat cheese, egg, avocado and pear salsa. It is amazing!

I have spent most of my time this weekend with Hazel. She is just adorable and we have been playing quite a lot! We also took her on a couple of walks to parks nearby. She is still not great at walking on the leash but loves smelling all the new smells. I also started my 30 Days of Yoga with Adriene this weekend and am psyched to get back on my workout game.

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Lots of snow walks with Hazel. It has snowed probably four or five days since we have been back.

Interesting articles and other things I’m loving:

The real women of Bombshell. This is just a moving discussion that highlights what was kept true in the movie and what they got wrong. I highly recommend it!

Tan France’s home tour. Of course it is beautiful. I liked how he talked about how it was before and what aspects of the original house were kept.

The Everygirl Splurges. Great ideas on pricier things that are really worth it.

Almond Cow plant-based milk maker. This was in Hitha Palepu’s newsletter this week and I am very interested in trying it! Also this is a great read on the problem with almond milk.

The cutest sweater. I am so tempted by this right now.

Of course there is the whole Harry and Meghan thing. There is a lot out there on this. I recommend reading this article on the press’ portrayal of Meghan vs Kate. It is kind of crazy!

The temperature in your city last year.

Watching: As I mentioned earlier I am back on the Bachelor train and excited for this season. I honestly have not had time in the past couple of weeks to watch anything else!

Wearing: My brother got me this scarf from Anthroplogie for Christmas and I have been wearing it almost every day since we got back to Utah. It is so warm and soft but I have had to teach Hazel not to bite at the fringe.

Reading: I just started The Only Plane in the Sky as an audiobook on libro.fm and it is very moving. It is going to be tough to listen to but it is already a really good book. Also I already can definitely recommend listening to it (there is a full cast that reads it and I think it is a little more powerful since it is an oral history)!

Instagram: I am loving Julie Leach‘s Instagram feed.

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I am totally obsessed with this jacket right now. It is Gal Meets Glam and on sale for such a good price.

I hope you are having a great weekend!

Erin

Week in My Life No. 10

I am skipping straight to another Week in Review since I have not had a whole lot of time to post but want to at least stay up-to-date with what has been going on in my life. This has definitely been a holiday week. I had a ton of work to get done as well and really tried to cram that into the first few days of the week. It was busy since we also had to pack, take Hazel to the vet and tie up all the loose ends around the house.

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Last real day of work attire plus a necessary coffee.

Our drive back to Boulder was quite an adventure. I have to say that one of the biggest struggles we have had with having a puppy is travel. I knew this would be tough but I was always saying to myself that since we drive from Utah to Boulder it should be fine. Hazel hates the car. She whined for so much of the drive. We also had to stop to take her out a lot which is fine but when we did stop it took a while to actually get her to pee and eat/drink if was time. At Little America it took at least 30 minutes just to get her to pee (it was almost 0 degrees so she got really cold and we had to get her warmed up). Anyway we eventually made it to Colorado.

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She could not figure out what this statue is or what she should do with it. This was when we wondered around Little America waiting for her to pee!
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Warming little Hazel up in the car!

I still had quite a bit of work to do from home so I spent the rest of the week doing that and Christmas shopping. It was really nice to be around my family though! We had a great birthday dinner for my dad and brother! I have been doing yoga as much as I can even if it is just an online class (I do Yoga with Adriene and really like it). I also got in a cycle class that my friend teaches at Rush. I also got to spend some time catching up with that same friend (which was long overdue!). The weekend has been overall very chill and nice. Saturday we took Hazel up to Wonderland Lake and she met so many people and dogs. It took us two hours just because we met so many people and she played with other dogs. We baked lots of cookies and had some family/friends over for dinner. Today we baked more and hung out with Hazel.

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Christmas shopping with my sister!
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Saturday morning Rush Cycle in Highlands following by a delicious brunch.
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The end of Hazel’s walk up to the lake. Also the weekend was so warm in Boulder. It feels so weird because last time we were here (Thanksgiving) it snowed over two feet and was freezing. I know Boulder is always kind of like this (very drastic changes in weather/temp especially through winter) but it still feels weird around the holidays.

Articles/links (yes I am a little light on these since I have not really been on my computer this week for anything other than work):

A great last minute gift guide. It has a little of everything!

Women to watch in politics. So this is not just women who are in office (what I expected) but minority women who hold jobs that relate to politics. This is such an interesting and exciting read!

Ideas for New Years Eve. I feel like the New Years Eve hype can be harder as I get older! These ideas for staying in on New Years are great.

I will also say that something else I have been really following this week are politics in general. There are lots of both interesting and frustrating things going on right now. I highly recommend following Jessica Yellin on Instagram for a great recap. I also listen to NPR’s Up First podcast.

Wearing: Lululemon align joggers are amazing. I was picking up some gifts in Lululemon and somehow found my way to these. I am already a huge fan of the align legging so its not really surprising that I fell in love with these. They are so comfortable and flattering and I have been wearing them almost every day since I got them!

Watching: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel season 3 is out on Amazon! I love love love this show and am so excited. I started watching this week and of course its amazing.

Reading: I am still finishing up Red, White and Royal Blue however I am hoping to finish up in the next day so I can start reading Leigh Bardugo’s Ninth House.

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The sun setting over the mountains at Wonderland Lake.

I hope you are have a great weekend and holiday season!

Erin

Fall Feels Second Edition

Last year I did a series of seasonal posts that highlight my favorite things about that season. See last year’s Fall Feels post. I wanted to continue that tradition but I am challenging myself to not repeat anything from last year’s post. My list now includes both things I love about a season and things that remind me of that season. Fall is my favorite so it is when I started this series and I can’t wait for everything it has to offer. I have already been wearing lots of fall clothing and have found some great decorations for the season (mums and pumpkins are my favorites!).

Yummy candles

Hot springs

Burnt orange

Cool breeze

Apple crisp

Rainy nights

Reading Harry Potter

Changing colors

Butternut squash soup

Booties

Cozy blankets

Camping

I also linked my Halloween movies post last year that I will link again since I definitely stand by all of these movies as great fall and halloween inspiration!

Erin

On Being Happy

I won’t go into all the details, but I have been struggling on a personal level a lot this year. I realized recently that I haven’t been entirely happy and that has really made me not want to do things that I usually love to do.

The important part of this is that I also realized that my happiness is 100% in my control. I have had some great opportunities and I have amazing, supportive people in my life. I have an amazing job that I really love and I live in a very beautiful place. I thought to myself, how am I unhappy with all these incredible and positive things? What is it that is making me unhappy? The problem is right there. I am way to focused on the outside factors. Happiness is something that can be influenced by outside factors but is ultimately a thing I can control. I can control my own attitudes about my situation and about life in general. This might sound intuitive to some but for me this has been a big realization. I need to take the necessary steps for myself to be happier and have a better outlook on life.

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I want to make a quick note that generally I am a very positive person and don’t usually have a problem making friends and being happy. I have gone through some big changes in the past year and I think I struggled a lot with that. It put me in a state of mind that was not as positive and I started blaming things on other people or outside factors.

A few things I have been doing to change my mindset:

  1. Lots of yoga. This is one that is probably different for everyone but moving your body is a really great way to focus on something else (not thinking too much) while moving your body and getting in touch with your physical self. I overthink things a lot and letting myself let go for an hour or two each day is such a beautiful gift. I want to be clear about this one, it is not at all about losing weight or even being physically fit, its about getting to know myself better and focusing my mind on that.
  2. The 5 minute journal. I only started this about five days ago but I spent a lot of time thinking about it and debating whether or not I should give it a try. I wanted something that puts me in a more positive mindset from the get go every morning. This journal seemed like a great way to influence my initial attitudes about the day while still being true to myself. The journal is just a daily journal with more directed prompts. The prompts are short and quick to make it a very easily attainable habit.
  3. Everyday joys. Incorporation of the things I love and am passionate about into my every day life has been a fun way to remind myself of what I do and who I am, everyday. This sounds vague so I will be more specific about what I am doing. I first made a list of things I love and care about and am trying to dedicate at least 5 minutes a day to thinking about each thing. I am trying to incorporate this into my Instagram stories because it gives me a sense of accountability to those things and it lets me shares those things that I love. One example of this is finding a cool nature video on YouTube or taking the time to explain an interesting biological concept (I think about biology all day but this gives me dedicated time to remind myself of why I love biology). It could also be sharing a trend I am into or a book I am loving. I will say that of all the things on this list, this one is the least developed, meaning I have not made it a habit yet so it might change a little over time.
  4. Intentionality with food. This absolutely does not mean that I am only eating super healthy food, it also does not mean that I previously was not eating healthily. It just means that I am focusing more on what I eat and how it makes me feel. Balance is such an important part of life and it is something I am trying to intentionally bring into my diet. A green smoothie every day has really improved my stomach problems and it has increased my vegetable intake significantly.
  5. Saying yes. In the past I have been that person that always says yes, is always overcommitted and takes every opportunity. This definitely made my life crazy busy but I like being busy, I feel like I work harder, am more productive and am happier when I have lots to do. I realized that I have been making excuses a lot lately which is very unlike me. So, I am trying to say yes to more social things and volunteer for different opportunities at school.

Being happy is a big part of creating the life I want to live. Realizing and recognizing that I have been unhappy has been a big step for me. I definitely hid my feelings and tried to convince myself over and over that everything is okay I am entirely happy with my life right now. It is okay to not be great and happy all the time. Life ebbs and flows and that is just a part of being human. I can’t always control what goes on around me but I can control how I choose to react to things. I may have a gut feeling about something uncontrollable but ultimately I can control how I feel about it in the long run. I choose to be happy with the person I am and to do more of what makes me happy.

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I hope you had a nice, relaxing February. Its already almost March, so crazy!

Erin

Around the Web

A new week is already here. With the holidays closing in I keep expecting to wake up to snowflakes falling across my window but it has yet to happen. I am shocked at how warm it has been. By this time in Colorado we should have a least had a couple of snow storms by now. The nice thing is that because it has been so warm I have been able to do lots of walking and hiking. The lake by my parent’s house is perfect for an early morning jog with the dog (such a beautiful view as well!). I have been reading a lot lately so I included my current book in this week’s round up. Here is are my favorite articles and items from the past several weeks:

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Getting motivated, organized and following through: I have been spending lots of time planning and getting myself organized. I found several articles that have really stuck with me. This Career Girl Daily has got me thinking about 2018 goals and how dreaming can be translated into a goal no matter how much of a stretch it may be. I also found this article on being a more put-together person and it has been motivating me to stay on top of things even when I am not in a permanent or comfortable position (not at home/work).

Style & Life Inspiration: Carly the Prepster has been doing a series called 1 Women 5 Outfits, inspired by Cup of Jo and I was very struck by the most recent post. Caroline’s story just is so inspiring and reminded me that people are so incredibly dedicated and capable. So many people face very tough obstacles yet are so resilient and persistent.

The City Baker’s Guide to Country Living: I am in the middle of reading this book right now and I just keep loving it more and more. It has made me think so much about career/life changes throughout life and how your major and career choice right out of college in no way dictates the rest of your life. I have always had this idea that I have to stick to what I choose and while there are advantages to sticking to one path it is not a life requirement. For some reason this book particularly has been so interesting for me to read right now.

Yves Saint Laurent Lipstick: Number one on my wish list this week is this rouge YSL lipstick. I have heard great things about it and it is just an amazing color. It does come in so many different colors as well!

Plaid Wrap Skirt: I was in J. Crew Factory the other day and saw this skirt. It is so amazing and looks fantastic! Just so flattering and perfect for this holiday season.

Trader Joe’s Holiday Products: Last year someone gave us some Trader Joe’s Holiday tea and it has been my absolute favorite. I am so surprised I haven’t mentioned it before because drink it so much. The one I love is a chocolate mint black tea but I was able to find this candy cane tea this year and I am sure it will be delicious. I also am loving their white pine soaps and lotions.

Stacie Flinner’s Travel Stories: So I very recently discovered Stacie Flinner on Instagram and I am obsessed with her Instagram stories. I first saw the one she did on her Orient Express adventure and I was completely hooked. I just love her photographs and she has given me so much inspiration in planning my own Europe trip next summer. I have yet to explore her blog but I am sure it will be just as great.

Anthropologie’s Puffin Collection: I was doing some Christmas shopping with my mom last week and we popped into Anthropologie to check out their sale section. I found the cutest puffin mugs. I am seriously obsessed and can’t believe they are on sale.

Style Influencer’s, Kate Middleton and RepliKates: Kate Middleton is undoubtedly a style icon, who I very much look up to and am influenced by. I never new however just how far some people go with it. This article was fascinating to me because I never would have guessed the extent to which Kate has influenced fashion brands. It is just an overall interesting article on who has the most influence on fashion (throughout history).

Something else I did a lot this past week was go to thrift shops. My sister loves going and is really into converting old jeans into something new and exciting so we went a bunch this past week. I found some really great vintage items. I sometimes really struggle with thrift stores because they can be so big and just drain my energy really quickly but if you can spend the time there are often buried treasures!

Thanks for reading and have a lovely week.

Erin