Thursday, August 29, 2013

Ten Reasons Garrett is Probably Going to Get Sick of Me Soon

Alternate Title One: Ten Reasons Why I Am Insufferable
Alternate Title Two: Ten Reasons I Probably Shouldn't Have Any Friends
Alternate Title Three: I swear I've Lived With Roommates Before, and They Still Like Me! (most of them, anyway.)

Now that we're finally living together, I figure it's just a matter of time before Garrett realizes he made a huge mistake.
Our apartment smells like fingernail polish pretty much all the time. No really. Even when I haven't painted them in three days.

I spill everything. No, I'm serious. Everything. And it is exhausting because the carpet in this super nice apartment is super new and super nice and I REALLY don't want to mess it up. Also guess who usually ends up cleaning up the mess?
Uh, whoops?

He lives his life constantly wondering "is this going to end up on the internet?" Spoiler: probably yes.

I call his underwear "panties" or "knickers" or "underroos (when I'm being especially hilarious)." Never boxers... or just "underwear." That would be boring. And I'm definitely not boring.

I would probably eat pasta for every single meal if I could. Because Garrett is a mature adult who wants to live a healthy life, he needs a) variety and b) something other than all carbs all the time. The fact that I am basically a child makes meal planning difficult.

I come up with a new Pinterest adventure nearly every day. Garrett is super handy, but Pinterest is an expensive habit. I'm working on it, okay?

Our bed usually looks like this by the time I'm done getting ready:

And our bathroom looks like this:
Why does one person need so many hair tools in one day?

I waste valuable DVR real estate on things like the Real Housewives of wherever and The Nightmare Nanny.

I may or may not be (but definitely am) the primary reason that we're getting cable. Garrett wants TV, but I REALLY want TV, so really, all the issues we've had with all the cable/satellite companies are because of me. Whoops.

I'm pretty sure all of these things are what make me adorable and quirky, buuuuuuut they might be all the reasons that I'm going to end up alone with eighteen cats for the rest of my life. Keep your fingers crossed for me, okay?!

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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Are we still talking about Miley? Cause I wanna talk about Miley.


So, in case you've been living under a rock that's buried below a tree that's growing in a different universe, you've heard about Miley Cyrus's performance at the VMAs on Sunday night. And before I go any further here, please know that I've never really been a Miley fan. She's always grated my nerves something fierce. But the criticisms I've seen of her in the last 72 hours have gone way past "yeah, she's kind of annoying" territory.

If you haven't, go watch it. I'll wait. You won't be gone long, because it's horrible and the most cringe-worthy thing ever.
Are you back now? Okay, so:

Our girl Miley has obviously gotten a lot of criticism for her performance. Let's talk about why.

First of all, there's the pesky 'cultural appropriation' issue. Twerking is her thing now, right? Ignoring the fact that, uh, she's not even really good at it, twerking is something that has been appropriated from black culture forever. Not cool, Miley. Not cool.
That's all I'm going to say about that, because there are people who are much smarter than me that spell out exactly why everything Miley is doing right now is extremely problematic, and you can (and should) read those articles here, here and here.

But for real. If I met Miley right now, there's only one question I think I would ask her: why, girlfriend? why?

I believe a woman has every right to dress the way she wants, dance the way she wants, and talk the way she wants. I didn't think her performance the other night was "slutty" like a lot of people did (God, I hate that word.) but I did think it was just... weird. Why did she think that thrusting with a foam finger and sticking her tongue out all over the place is sexy, or cool, or whatever it is that she's going for?

What was she trying to accomplish with this performance? Did she only want people to start talking about her again? Because that's definitely happening. People are most assuredly talking about her today. But it's definitely not kind. And I'm not sure she's going to be able to bounce back from it.

Everyone's so angry that she was grinding up on Robin Thicke, but I haven't seen hardly any outrage directed at him. And he's married. It takes two to tango, so if you're going to be mad that she was dancing up on some man, you need to get mad at the man, too. It's not like he was pushing her away. She doesn't deserve all your anger just because she's a woman.

AND AND AND: 'Blurred Lines' is literally about blurring the lines of consent. It's a super creepy, rapey song. But you're mad about her dancing too provocatively? Get outta here. If you're going to take issue with her performance, get mad at that. Get mad at the fact that, as a woman singing and dancing to that song, she perpetuated the idea that women ARE objects. She has every right to express herself the way she wants to, but not at the expense of others.

Finally, I want to know who told her that THIS
was a good idea. Because that person should be fired.

At the end of the day, I really do feel sorry for her. And am a little confused by her. Honestly, I'm not sure what to make of her. From where I'm standing (okay fine, I'm sitting) right now, I see a confused, insecure, slightly delusional, probably scared 20 year old girl. Can you imagine having everyone watching your every move when YOU were 20? I can't - having my awkward phase immortalized forever would be... awful. She's like that girl that gets too drunk at parties. She shows up, drinks way too much of everyone else's booze, and stumbles around, spilling beer, dancing on whoever is standing still and laughing way too loud. She's annoying, but you mostly just feel sorry for her because she's clearly trying WAY too hard to be liked and it has to just be exhausting. I mean, yikes.

So maybe what she needs to is take one giant step backwards, out of the spotlight (especially if the rumors about her doing drugs are true). Examine what her priorities are and what she wants to accomplish with her music. If she decides that she likes what she's doing, like, she REALLY believes she's on the right path, fine. She's a grown woman, past the age of consent, and totally capable of making her own choices. But hopefully she realizes that what she's doing - whatever the heck it is - is most decidedly not working for her, and she'll take some time (a lot of time) to reevaluate.

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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Monday Things, some White Whines, and an Ad Sale!


I'm beginning to think I can't be held to anything other than random lists on Mondays. Maybe it's because I feel like the last three weekend recaps have sounded the same - moving, getting settled, hospital, blah blah blah - and I feel like it's just getting repetitive. And boring.

I also think I've been hesitant to gush about how awesome it is to finally be able to live with Garrett because I don't want people raining on my parade. I've gotten plenty of "of course it's good NOW, you just wait until <insert arbitrary amount of time has passed>. You'll hate each other by then." Super encouraging. And hello? Stop projecting your awful relationship on me. It ain't my fault, so pipe down.

But seriously? It's pretty great. I was expecting there to be a few more growing pains, I guess? Garrett and I are both pretty set in our ways, so there are always going to be bumps when you combine lives like that. But we've both been making an effort to not get hung up on... anything, really. This is what we've been waiting for for a year and a half, and we're both committed to making it as awesome as possible.

So that's what's going on with that.

In other update-y news, if you don't follow me on Twitter, you may not know that I've been TV-less since we moved in. I know. I KNOW. It's been a nightmare.* Especially since I MISSED *NSYNC LAST NIGHT.**

*It really hasn't been that bad, but that's not the point. We're going for theatrics here. 
**This part really was a nightmare. I MISSED IT.

We're both pretty committed to NOT going with Time Warner Cable, which is the only cable provider around here. Their customer service is THE WORST, and it is way too expensive. Their $50 BASIC CABLE package was going to cost over $100 a month once they tacked on all the fees, and taxes, and equipment, and all that. I'm sorry, what? No. Go away.

So we made an appointment with DirecTV to come out on Saturday to hook us up. Double the channels TWC was offering for literally half the price. AND whole house DVR. Exciting, right?

NOPE: Apparently our apartment doesn't face the right way. Other apartments in our complex do. But not ours. No DirecTV for us. Whomp whomp.

Naturally, I handled it in a totally mature, adult way:

So Dish is coming out this afternoon to see if our apartment points the right direction for THEIR satellites. So we'll see. It blows my FREAKIN' mind that it is 2013 and we can put a man on the moon and make a hologram of a dead person to sing to us at Coachella but my satellite has to be pointed the EXACT RIGHT DIRECTION for me to be able to watch the Real Housewives. I mean, come on.

And finally, some exciting news: I won a year of Passionfruit for free from a giveaway on Hey Love Designs, so to celebrate, I'm offering 50% off all ad spots for the next 48 hours! Just use the code helloawesome and scoop up any spot. I added a "Friday Happy Hour" option, where you and your blog are featured on my Weekly Roundup. Those are usually my favorite posts of the week, and I'd love to have you on there! Hop on over to my sponsor page and get your spot! (and then check out the new graphic I added. I think it's pretty adorable, don't you?)

So anyway, that's what's going on around here. How are things with you on this lovely Monday afternoon?

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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Guess what day it is! Guess. What. Day. It. Is.


Hey, did you hear? I have a new apartment. This week has been full of unpacking and organizing and settling. Did you see Brit's fabulous guest post on healthy snacking, and my post about being a Professional Blogger, and my feature on ShopAtHome? Super exciting stuff!! 

This post on College Humor about being a "new drinker" made me laugh, because we've all been there, right? Right. Here's some footage from other famous people auditioning for The Office. Hint: Seth Rogen is involved. Could you imagine?! Patton Oswold performed arguably the most effective trolling that Twitter has ever seen. Finally, who said grammar is important? Not these people. 


This isn't a Read necessarily, but it's the trailer for season five of Parenthood, and that is important. 
I wish I could show this article about five tips for modern research to every college student I know. If you consider yourself a foodie (or like to pretend you are), you should read this article called 'Of Paste and Pasta." Since you know I love stories about people being awesome, here's a story about a school employee who stopped a gunman at her school using sheer awesomeness. This one is a must-read, I'm telling you. 


This weekend we're getting our couch, our kitchen table, and our coffee/end tables! It's going to look like a real apartment, AND we'll actually have somewhere to sit! Revolutionary stuff, huh? We're going out to dinner tonight and doing our first *real* grocery shopping trip together. I get to spend the afternoon with my two cousins!!! (Be on the lookout for Instagram pictures.) 


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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Professional Blogger? Duh.


Last week, I was happily bopping around the internet, when I came across an article called "Hey Lifestyle Goddess, Get Off My Internets." You can read the full article here if you want, but it's just a pretty short article about Get Off My Internets, which is essentially the Burn Book of the Blogosphere. I've never really put much stock into GOMI. it's pissed a lot of people off, but I figure... everyone isn't going to like you all the time. According to The Cultureist, there are approximately 2.5 BILLION people that use the internet. The chances of at least one of those 2.5 billion people hating your guts is pretty high, right? Sooooo, you know. Get over it and stuff.

Anyway, this post wasn't even supposed to be about GOMI, or that article. It's supposed to be about a comment someone made in reference to us lifestyle bloggers. This comment, specifically:

"I mean, it's ludicrous that this is an industry. These are people keeping online diaries. The writing for the most part is atrocious and the attitude they throw around is hilarious. They. Are. Not. Celebrities except in their own circle and their own mind."

At first, I rolled my eyes. Then I giggled, because it's kind of true. I mean, what does it mean to be a celebrity... on the internet? You probably wouldn't put it on your resume (although I know one guy who does. and it REALLY makes me laugh.) even though it's something that you obviously spend a lot of time on. 

And then after the eye rolls and the giggles, I really started thinking. Blogging IS ridiculous. But I can't imagine my life without it. At all. And this is why:

1) It magnifies the good parts of my life and the things that I like about myself. I've discovered so many things about myself since I started blogging because I take the time to sit and write about them. Really revolutionary, I know.  

2) It also magnifies the crappy things and helps keep me accountable. There's nothing like self-reflection to give you a kick in the pants sometimes, right?

3) When you have a blog, you're never alone, ever. I wrote a whole post about why blog friends are the best kind of friends here, but really, they are tops. If I want someone to gchat with, or someone to watch the Real Housewives with, there's always someone on Twitter ready to gab with you. This is especially beneficial to those of us with boyfriends/husbands who just cannot POSSIBLY listen to another Real Housewives dinner party. 

4) It's a constant self esteem boost. Most of the bloggers I know are pretty down-to-earth women. It's why I love them. But we all love having our ego stroked sometimes, right? It feels pretty freakin' good to come home to ten new comments on your blog. You know it's true.

5) There are always people around to give you outfit/work/relationship advice. Bloggers are smart, yo. Listen to them. 

6) It helps you examine everything more critically. I notice so many more of the "little things" now that I have a blog. Content really is all around you, and once you start paying attention to it, you notice everythingggggggg.

7) Occasionally, it pays you. I got paid once to talk about nail polish. NAIL POLISH. Something I would have talked about anyway. It is the best thing ever.

8) Obviously, it's a journal you'll be able to look at in the future. At the very least, it'll give you a good laugh when you look back in ten years and see that your biggest problem one Tuesday was that your favorite waiter at your favorite sushi place quit mid-shift. Wait, that's only happened to me? Oh. Anyway, even though I wouldn't want anyone ELSE going through my blog archives, I'm glad I have them to look back on. And laugh at. 

So there you have it. Blogging is the most ridiculous, most time-consuming, most laughable thing that I do, and I wouldn't change a thing about it.

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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Guest Post: Healthy Snacking by Brit!

If you haven't met Brittany yet, you are seriously missing out. She's one of those people who you feel connected to immediately because they're just THAT awesome. I've never met in real life, but she's real life besties with one of MY real life besties, so ipso facto.... we're besties, right? (Is that even the right way to use the phrase ipso facto? Anyway.) Brittany blogs all about how to stay healthy while still enjoying food. And she didn't mention it on her own, so I will: she just got published for the first time!!! I basically have a famous person posting on my blog today. Long story short, you will love her. Take it away, Brit!!


Hi! I’m Brittany and I blog over on my site Wine, Cheese, and Workout Capris. I am so excited to be writing a guest post for Alyssa’s blog. My blog focuses on how I’m trying to live the healthiest life I can while still enjoying my favorite things, which is wine and cheese (let’s be honest, I’m never giving those up). In the spirit of trying to incorporate health and fitness into everyday life, I’m writing to you about some simple, healthy snacks.

As summer winds down I always feel that I get quite a bit busier in the fall. In order to stay energized and on track I do best when I fuel myself properly with healthy snacks throughout the day. However, let’s face it, I’m lazy and I’m not one to prepare time-intensive food so here are some of my favorite, easy, healthy snacks. Most of these options you can simply buy in bulk and keep at your desk or in your backpack.


Anything with Peanut Butter or Hummus
I LOVE hummus and peanut butter (but not combined together, that would be gross). I eat one or the other every day whether it’s on pita chips, celery sticks, or other sliced vegetables. Choosing a protein-rich spread like peanut butter or hummus helps keep you fuller longer and is a much healthier alternative, over something like Ranch dip.

I always keep a jar of peanut butter at my desk at work and reach for it when I have an afternoon snack attack. See?
Also, these are my thoughts on hummus and bell peppers, just in case you were wondering:

Kale Chips
Heed my warning…


When 3 p.m. rolls around at work and I start to get hungry again, I usually want to reach for something salty and savory and the vending machine beckons me to come buy potato chips. And for the first 6 months that I worked at my job, I did usually give in and get the potato chips and promptly gained 10 pounds in that time. I’m not even kidding.
Don’t be like me and gain 10 pounds. You can indulge your salty treat obsession to your heart’s content just by doing one thing: switching to kale chips. I have literally made 8 humongous batches of kale chips in the last month alone because I adore the treat so much. By switching from potato chips to kale chips you’ll save yourself a TON of calories and you’ll be delivering your body a nutrient dense snack.
You can buy them pre-made but I much prefer homemade kale chips and they’re easy to make! For directions, check out my post on how to make kale chips.

Instant Oatmeal
One thing I have found since I have started transitioning to healthier eating habits is that halfway through the day, whether I have had lunch or not, I am still ravenous. One way I tide myself over until dinner is with instant oatmeal packets. All you have to do is add water and pop them in the microwave and you have a super healthy snack.
Plus, you’re doing your body a favor since oatmeal is full of fiber, aids in lowering cholesterol, stabilizes blood sugar, and is full of antioxidants.
Also, if you add a scoop of peanut butter to your oatmeal you’re doubling your healthy protein intake (See how I incorporated peanut butter again? Yes, I am obsessed)


Frozen Fruit
I know, this sounds like an odd snack to keep on hand. However, it is actually really versatile and can be used in so many ways. I often bring a large bag of frozen strawberries or mixed berries and keep it in my freezer at work and then use it throughout the week in the following ways:
  • As a yogurt or oatmeal topping
  • In a mid-afternoon smoothie
  • Plain and slightly thawed – it’s like a cool, healthy sweet treat!
  • In a glass of water for extra flavor
However, my favorite way to enjoy frozen fruit is in a cocktail of course!

On-The-Go Store Bought Options
If you’re totally in a bind, starving, and haven’t brought any of the previously snacks along with you, here are some of my favorite options you can find at any grocery or convenience store.

  1. Sargento Pepper Jack String Cheese
  2. Clif White Chocolate Macademia Nut Bar
  3. Greek On The Go Yogurt Strawberry Granola Bites
  4. Terra Original Vegetable Chips
  5. Skinny Pop Popcorn
  6. Whole Fruit Valencia Orange Greek Frozen Yogurt
  7. Healthy Choice Thai Style Chicken with Brown Rice Soup
  8. Triscuit Brown Rice and Sweet Potato Crackers

That’s all I have! If you try any of the snacks I mentioned I hope you like them. Thanks for reading and have a beautiful day!!

Cheers!


And check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Monday, August 19, 2013

"You're putting WHAT on my bookshelf?" and other update-y things.

First of all, if you'll allow me to humblebrag a little bit, I was featured in the Bloggers We Love section of ShopAtHome.com, which is a fabulous website that provides unlimited access to printable and downloadable coupons, coupon codes and promotions. Since I talk about saving money allthetime, obviously, this website is one of my new faves. Go check me out, and then scoop up some coupons for yourself!

Anyway, there's not a whole lot to recap, since my entire weekend was filled with moving activities, and even though it rained ALL WEEKEND LONG, it went pretty well. My parents met Garrett's parents for the first time (after 1.5 years of dating), so that's something. It was brief, and it went pretty well too.

As I mentioned yesterday, we're still couchless, cableless and tableless, but we're making it. We have our meals planned for the week (I KNOW!), a cable installation date, stain for the coffee table we're getting, and *hopefully* a washer/dryer and maybe a new bed coming to us over the weekend. Keep your fingers crossed for us, okay?

Tomorrow will resume regularly scheduled blogging, where the SUPER adorable Brittany from Wine, Cheese and Workout Capris will be here with some healthy snack ideas! I can't wait to see what she comes up with, because I'm beyond ready to get back into a (mostly healthy) routine.

Happy Monday!!! I hope yours isn't rainy and disgusting like mine is.

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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

The Sunday Currently


Sitting in the floor of our NEW apartment. Wooo!!!
Looking all this stuff in front of me that still needs to be unpacked. 
Reading my new Women's Health mag.
Hearing uh, nothing. We don't have cable hooked up yet, so we haven't brought the TV over, so it's pretty stinkin' quiet over here. By next Sunday, I'm guessing it's going to be filled with sounds of European football, and then a few weeks after that, AMERICAN FOOTBALL. 
Clicking through Pinterest... We have a mantel over the fireplace (we have a fireplace) that needs some decorating. 
Planning oh, just dinner for this week! We're doin' it, you guys! 
Excited that we're finally IN! We still have a lot to unpack and organize (and we don't have a couch or a dining room table in here yet) but we're in and it's ours and that is wonderful.
Wearing a tshirt and shorts. And no underwear. I don't tell you this to be gross or anything, I'm telling you so you can make fun of me for LEAVING ALL MY UNDERWEAR AT MY PARENTS HOUSE. What a moron. 
Typing a few emails and a post for tomorrow. 
Feeling tired and mostly uncaffienated. Yikes. 

Happy Sunday!!!!
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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Friday!!!

I'm so glad my post about friendship resonated with so many of you. Your comments made me realize that I'm definitely not alone... I'm glad we have each other! 
As soon as I leave here, I'm off to meet Garrett to pick up keys to OUR apartment!! Can you believe it? I can't. If you don't want to miss a second of the action (lol) you can follow me on Instagram!!!

As bloggers, we look through stock photos a lot, right? Here are some... um... strangely naked ones? For the boys that read this blog, here is some SOLID advice from a dudebro who has "learned about women." Really, you can't make this stuff up. Are you Type-A? Do you experience these side effects? 

In things that make you say "well, DUH." some study proves that 50 Shades of Grey (which is apparently still a thing we're talking about) perpetuates abusive relationships. What are your thoughts there? Do you love Hillary Clinton? I do, and apparently so does everyone else. But they didn't always. And since you know I'm a sucker for any article about millennials, here's a very interesting one about millennial Christians. Veeeeeery interesting.

Um, did I mention we're about to pick up keys? To our very own apartment? Does it get any more confetti worthy than that? I don't think so.

Have a great great great weekend!!!!!! 
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Check out one of the sweetest (literally! get it?) bloggers I know, Leslie!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

How to Write a Blog Post, A Helpful Guide

Have you ever wondered what I looked like when I'm in blogger mode?

So, the last time I posted one of my helpful guides, you all seemed to really like it. I really think I changed a lot of relationships for the better that day. 

1) Decide you should actually get ahead of the game and write a post for tomorrow before, you know, it's actually tomorrow.

2) Announce to partner that you, The Blogger, are about to 

3) Check Twitter, just to see what everyone's doing.

4) Engage in a ridiculous conversation with your blog friends about the hot topic of the day.

5) Oh right, you were about to go write a post. 

6) Make sure you have established the Ideal Blogging Environment (TM). This includes: laptop, box of wine, blogging notebook, and iPhone to continue checking Twitter without leaving your blog post. Also recommended (though not entirely necessary) is a doting partner to refill your wine glass. You're busy being a Professional Blogger, after all. No time for breaks!

7) Open browser. What were you doing again? Oh, writing a blog post. That's right.

8) Realize that ummmmmm... you don't actually have anything to write about. Sit in shock for a few minutes, because your life is so interesting and all. Talking about it should be way easier.

9) Check blogging notebook. What are all these scribble lists? Were they written by an actual person? There's nothing to write about in here.

10) Oh snap, the wine's gone. Better get some more from the box.

11) The wine gets your creative juices flowing, so you finally decide on a topic.

12) Every blog post needs a good graphic, right? Open PicMonkey and go to town.

13) Realize another 30 minutes has passed, and all you have is a title and a beautifully edited picture taken by your incredibly patient fiance.

14) Have you checked Twitter lately? Better make sure you don't miss anything!!

15) Your wine glass is empty AGAIN? Fix that.

16) Pat yourself on the back for being such a great multi-tasker.

17) Oh right, you still haven't actually typed anything. Maybe you should try that now?

18) Hammer out a few paragraphs. Dang, girl. You are funny.

19) Realize that three rambly paragraphs is totally sufficient for now. Pour a glass of wine, sit back, and relax.

20) Pat yourself on the back because ZOMG, you're such a good blogger!

21) Wait until 9am the next morning and realize that you never finished that bomb.com post you started yesterday.

22) Scramble to finish it so it can get max exposure.

23) Curse your own procrastination.

24) Realize it should NOT take 25 steps to write one freakin' blog post.

25) Repeat. Everyday. Because you will just NEVER learn, will you? Seriously, self. Seriously.


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