Merry Christmas + Happy Holidays

steve madden shoes

I wanted to wish everyone a merry Christmas, even though there's no blog post for today. (Obviously, I also wanted to share my cute new shoes--thanks, Santa).

I hope everyone has a happy holiday with friends and family, and eats plenty of good food! I know I'm super excited for lasagna and the oatmeal carmelitas I made yesterday morning. I also hope no one is too stressed out today even though the holidays can do that to you. One thing I get anxious about is the change in routine and all the mass amounts of food.

But really, though, the carmelitas are bomb. Maybe I'll post the recipe one day!

MERRY CHRISTMAS! xx

P.S. Can we talk about how warm it is? It was 85 degrees for Christmas Eve and that's not cool.

Top 5 Healthy Store Bought Juices

soho juice co

I have been sitting comfortable on the cold-pressed juice bandwagon for a looong time. Based on the weird looks I get in my hometown, no one here has found the appeal of drinking healthy store bought juices yet. But, I mean, why not? What is so bad about being able to quickly get in some vegetables without having to eat them or manually juice them. Because sometimes you don't feel like eating vegetables and (as much as I love this fat flush juice recipe) fighting with a juicer is not everyone's favorite pastime.

Also, who can resist trendy juice bars? I was totally in my element in New York. There was a juice bar in the same building as my internship and I made it my mission to try everything. (I even wrote a post about their weird juice shot remedies when I was sick).

The downfalls of cold-pressed juices are that they're not all found in stores and they can be expensive. Sure, you find juice anywhere, but not healthy cold-pressed juice without a bunch of added sugar and chemicals. Also, sometimes they tend to taste like grass (which you know, isn't super appealing).

I've tried plenty, though–which has lead to me establishing which ones taste more like an enjoyable drink but are still healthy. Here's my breakdown of my top five healthy store bought juices:

Versatile MAC Eyeshadow Pallete

mac pallete

I love my MAC eyeshadow pallete for two reasons:

1. You can build your own.
2. They're travel-friendly.

This is my first MAC pallete and it is (obviously) very well loved. It's lasted me quite a while, but I love it because it can be used for so many different occasions. I typically end up just throwing this in my suitcase any time I'm going home or on vacation because I can use it for anything.

Matte Colors:
Cork
Espresso

Pearl Colors:
Arena
Paradisco

Here's my favorite looks with them:

Easy 5 Move Workout

workout diagram

This past month has been super stressful because of the end of the semester. I'm only one semester away from graduating, so it makes sense. I've kept telling myself (and the unfortunate people who hear me complain all the time) that I really need to get to the gym because one, it's been a while, and two, working out make you feel so much less stressed.

Except figuring out what to actually do once you make it to the gym kind of just adds more stress on top of everything (or is that just me?). Honestly, the reason I end up not going is because there's A LOT of equipment to figure out and A LOT of giant guys huddled around the weights. #gymtimidation

But I'm tired of hiding out a treadmill (because running sucks even when you like it) so I've brought back a workout that was given to me by a personal trainer during a free session.

I have about zero attention span, and I can do this workout no problem. So you can, too! The best parts are that it requires little equipment (you still kind of need the gym though), you can do it even if you're not particularly strong (hello–me), and it's only five different moves. 

The Blind Tiger Cafe

blind tiger coffee
It's been a while since I've written a coffee related post–but don't worry, the coffee addiction is still going strong and I've gotten some pretty legit headaches if I don't drink it.  

I don't advise going to Ybor unless there is something really specific you want to do and there is no other area around Tampa you can go for it. I've been wanting to try The Blind Tiger Cafe, but needed another reason to go to Ybor besides the coffee.

I decided I wanted a hoop for my nose ring (which didn't end up happening), but there was my second reason. 



1. It was really good and one of the few coffee shops in the area that are open late at night. 

2. They served Buddy Brew coffee, which is local coffee that they brew at my other favorite coffee shops.

3. For some horrible reason (pretty sure taxes are higher) I ended up paying over five dollars for a latte that usually costs me around three. WHY?

If I'm in Ybor and really want some coffee after all the other shops are closed, maybe I'd go back. But I'd probably just drive the extra ten minutes to actual Buddy Brew and pay significantly less. 


The "Everything" Product That's Not For Everyone

josie maran argan oil

Because I spend way too much of my free time in Sephora (and I have no willpower when it comes to purchases) I'm one of their VIB members. Between special VIB offers and Sephora's regular newsletters, I've seen a lot of advertisements for the Josie Maran Argan Oil.

I always ignored them and stood firmly with my "I have oily skin, I don't need to add to it" belief. Then I read somewhere that apparently adding oil to oily skin was actually some kind of physical version of reverse psychology, and it was actually good idea. The description on Sephora's website even says the same thing––which leads to why I'm actually sharing one of my semi-negative experiences.

To start off on more of the safe side, I purchased the light version of this product. It was supposed to be lighter and fast-absorbant, but also deliver all of the benefits of Argan Oil.

The best part? It's meant to be used on your face, nails, hair, and feet.

Oxford Exchange - Coffee, Books & More

oxford exchange caramel latte

You would think that after ten weeks in New York I would have been able to find a coffee shop that I like better than OE.

Nope.

Maybe it's because theres not enough space to have a nicely decorated coffee bar / bookstore / Anthropology-ish store / restaurant all in one place in Manhattan. But I mean I feel like there should be one somewhere.

Either way, Oxford Exchange is no doubt one of the perks of living in Tampa. (Even if it takes a 20 minute drive on the highway to get there).

It's perfect. I've written about OE before in my post about how to be more of a "morning person" but it deserves a whole post of it's own because literally anything you can order there is good.

Beachy Hair Without Heat

bumble and bumble products

I've been back in Florida for a week now. It's humid, hot, rainy–and I started my senior year yesterday.

I'm also in desperate need of a haircut. Combine that with re-introducing exceptionally high humidity, and my hair has been a mess. (It's fine, I needed an excuse to try new products anyway).

I want to love Bumble & bumble, I really do, but the price makes it difficult. The only products I've convinced myself to purchase were travel sized bottles of their gentle shampoo (on sale!) and super-rich conditioner. They smelled great but were apparently too gentle and not rich enough for my stubborn, curly hair.

I've been wanting to try their invisible oil line since they came out with it, and then their introduction of "Don't Blow It" (one of the few hair products designed for air-drying) finally convinced me to just do it since I needed something new anyway. (And I promise I'll get to the beachy hair at some point).

Culture Espresso – Were Have You Been All My Life?


This is my last week in New York, and therefore my last New York coffee shop review. It's only fitting that I've just now found my favorite one. 

Last week, I thought I had found the perfect coffee shop, but this one is even better!
Culture Espresso is a little bit small and crammed (basically, it looked a lot bigger online) but it has a bar and some corner seating. There are marble counter tops (my weakness) and chandeliers!

I ordered an iced latte (something I haven't tried at previous places and don't usually order) and it was really good. Usually iced lattes are too milky for me and I prefer to actually taste my coffee, so I order iced coffee or cold brew instead. 

Two Products for Soft Skin


Everyone wants soft, smooth skin. It's popular now, because it's summer and everyone is wearing tank tops and shorts; and it's popular in the winter because we're all trying to combat the try cold (well, Florida isn't, but everyone else is).

As a disclaimer, I'm known to have super soft skin. I can't tell you why (except for that maybe I do a decent job taking care of it), but every time someone has grabbed my hand or brushed against my arms I get some variation of "Oh my god, you're skin is so soft!" So thanks guys, it does wonders for my self-esteem. 

But even though I always have soft skin, it's always really dry. I can't explain it, I know it doesn't make sense, but at least I can use this information to prove that these products actually work and it's not just my good luck. 

Stumptown Coffee Roasters

stumptown cold brew coffee

I only have a week and a half left in New York. The past ten weeks have gone by incredibly fast––like, so fast it feels like just yesterday I didn't know how to parallel park.

(It's debatable on whether or not that might still be a true statement, my parking is horrible).

I'm ready to go home, but I'm also ready to come back even though I haven't left yet. 

Yes, I know. This post is supposed to be about coffee. I'm getting there.

Anyway, cold brew coffee has become pretty popular but a good one is still kind of hard to find. It's super strong and sometimes it tastes super strong. I like the taste of coffee, it doesn't have to be to be sweetened too much for me to drink it; but I don't like bitter coffee that tastes like someone mashed up coffee beans, added a tiny bit of water, and brewed it for way too long. 

Unfortunately, that's the definition of a lot of cold brews. Even more unfortunately, I still take the risk and order cold brew because it's so ridiculously hot outside. 

I walked past Stumptown Coffee Roasters on the day when I thought it would be a good idea to walk the ten blocks from Penn Station to my job after coming straight from a less-than-24-hour-trip to Long Island. Then (because I couldn't remember the name) I decided to just wander the vicinity of those ten blocks until I found the shop (8/10 would not recommend––it took a while) so I could try it.

August Nail Polish Picks

essie colors

When I think of August, I don't think of summer––but maybe that's because I'm from Florida and my whole concept of seasons is all kinds of messed up. I mean it is in the nineties today, so I'm not really sure why I'd even question it.

By this point, though. I'm way past having any interest in super bright and summer-y nail polish colors. Anything coral, orange, or pink is most likely shoved in a drawer somewhere to be avoided until spring break comes along. But at the same time, I'm not at the point where my nails stay a shade of purple that's so dark it's basically black (don't worry, that will come later).

Gregory's Coffee: See Coffee Differently

gregory's coffee

While I'm trying to limit going to super chain-y coffee shops during my stay in New York, Gregory's Coffee has been my go-to for days in between my "let's-discover-a-new-coffee-shop" trips. We've been in a love-hate relationships since my first day at work, and I will miss it dearly when I leave.

I'm honestly considering buying a jug of their cold brew (otherwise known as rocket fuel) before I leave. 

Gregory's is the place for your vanilla latte or extra-strong cold brew, and it's one of the few places where I can consistently say I'll like the coffee regardless of if it's iced or hot. Also, it's kind of hipster. I mean, just look at their logo––it has square glasses.


And they have really great doughnuts. Doughnuts are my weakness and I love them with my coffee. Seriously, go get one if you're in New York. I'll probably get one on my way to work this morning if we're being honest. 

Anyway, to the love-hate relationship. Their cold brew is super strong, and sometimes it's extra strong. My first day at work I stopped to get some on my way in. There's a shop practically beneath my office so I was like "oh, that shop looks cool" and I bought my coffee.

While sitting in orientation, the person leading said "Oh, is that Gregory's? Don't drink it black. It will make you cry."

The #BreakYouMake

breakyoumake

I'm not a super preppy person, but Carly from The College Prepster, is a person I follow regularly. This past weekend I attended Her Conference, put on by Her Campus, as a part of their blogger network. Carly was there to speak on a panel about blogging and the advice she had to give was totally worth the ridiculous train ride I experienced in order to get there (weekend train schedules are rough, guys).

It's no surprise that she knows so much about the back end of blogging, but I was honestly blown away by things she talked about! She sounded like a pro (because she is) while telling us about all the analytics and statistics that go into blogging and had really good insights into what life as a professional blogger is really like.

All I have to say––after profession my undeniable respect for her––is that she definitely needs a break. Which is why I nominate her for a #BreakYouMake, Completely relevant: I also thought it was funny that when we talked about managing stress and taking a break she mentioned one of her new favorite apps, which happens to be one I just talked about in my post about ways to relax last week.

chobani break you make

After deciding on whim to take the train to Long Island on Sunday, spend the night there, and then take the train back to Manhattan to go straight to work on Monday––I think I might need a break, too.

Coffee + Cupcakes


coffee cup

Two major things from my New York bucket list have been accomplished. Unfortunately, neither of them involved finding the perfect cup of coffee. 

My most recent approach to finding a new coffee shop has kind of been to just explore until I see one that looks interesting. To kick this off, I started at One World Trade (which is a photographer's dream, btw). I had taken the PATH from New Jersey, so when I emerged from the depths of the PATH station / One World Trade, I found Brookfield Place. 

My intentions were to find a local coffee shop in the area (meaning a little exploration was in store) but plans change when you walk about five feet and find this:

5 Ways to De-Stress


dandelion

Working from 9 to 5 has definitely made me realize a few things--some good and some bad. One of the bad things: I get stressed and overwhelmed pretty easily.

I'm the person that has to take somewhat frequent study breaks, go for short walks, and do other random things to take my mind off of something I've been focusing too hard on.


By this point, you'd think I'd be a pro at de-stressing. I have some reliable go-to options, but I've also picked up a few things while being in a new city and experiencing different things. Some are from reading blogs and articles (which is another way I like to de-stress too).

1. Relax with an easy read.

Whether it's a book, your favorite blog, or a fun article, reading something that's quick and easy can be a good way to take your mind off of whatever is stressing you out. (I'm a big reader, so I've done a lot of this recently).

2. Use a relaxation app.

One of the VP's at my internship recommended Headspace and I also read about it in this article. It definitely "declutters the mind."

Paris Baguette Bakery & Cafe

coffee cup

This whole “try all the coffee shops!” plan has taught me one thing: I’m kind of a coffee snob.

So hi, hello, my name is Marina and I like to drink an obscene amount of coffee and I don’t prefer it any particular way—however it cannot taste like dirt.  

Which is why I’m relieved that the coffee shop I originally went to for this post, the-coffee-shop-who-shall-not-be-named, only charged $2. It went straight in the trash, which is ridiculous because:

  1. You don’t ever throw away coffee.
  2. You don’t ever throw away coffee that you paid for. 

Seriously, though! I see so many people with cups from there! What are you all doing?!

…so I went to Paris Baguette instead. 

New bareMinerals Complexion Rescue

bareMinerals

So it’s summer, and it’s hot, and I’ve been outside walking a lot. That rhymed, which is weird, but I’m going with it.

I went down the shore this weekend for the first time (it was pretty exciting) to see family and my long-lost friend, the ocean. The boardwalk at Seaside showed me how kind of necessary boardwalks are (Florida, get on it) and if you follow me on Insta, then you know I had some pretty legit pizza while I was there. 

This also explains why this post wasn’t up yesterday. (Oops). Apparently everyone was trying to get back to the city at 11 pm last night. It was rough, we were tired. Work the next morning was fun.

While down the shore, with a slightly dry/burnt face and in some intense heat, I realized that my usual powder-foundation wasn’t working for me anymore. My cousin just told me that she liked the new bareMinerals Complexion Rescue (and she left me unsupervised for entirely too long in Ulta) so I bought it—no surprise. I also bought their Smoothing Face Brush to apply it with and I surprisingly like applying liquid make up with a brush. 

Birch Coffee — NYC

birch coffee

"We don’t do flavored coffee here."

I’m a big coffee fan (obviously), so I don’t mind drinking it unflavored. However, when I get lattes, I do like them be vanilla. I mean, I just think lattes should be flavored—but that’s me. 

So when I order my vanilla latte at this coffee shop that I was so excited to try, I was a little disappointed when I earned a slightly judgmental glance and those words. (I guess he thought I wasn’t a true coffee drinker since I wanted my latte flavored).

Tourist Things + Shake Shack

central park sailboat pond

I was definitely a tourist this past weekend. My boyfriend came to see me, so we went to Times Square, did some shopping (I bought these really great shoes that are on sale), and walked around Central Park.

It was my first trip to the Hersey's store. Which was essentially heaven, but also smelled like artificial chocolate (gross). We walked around Time's Square a bit and then made our way toward the park.


Naturally, we climbed to the top of one of the rocks--which was an interesting experience. I can now check rock climbing in Toms and a dress off my list because I did both and successfully avoided falling. I absolutely could have spent all day sitting up there, though. It was beautiful.

Coffee, Smoothies & The Occasional Cheeseburger

le cafe coffee

I joked the other day that I would totally live off of coffee, smoothies, and the occasional cheeseburger if I would still be able to function like a proper human being. I just really love coffee, and taking pictures of coffee, and cute coffee shops.

The fact that I'm spending a large chunk of my time in New York is only further feeding my addiction.

I've already decided that I want to try as many coffee shops and little cafes as I can. I've now decided that I should probably blog about it. I mean, why not?

First coffee shop to kick everything off: Le Café Coffee.


Love Wins + Weird Trendy Juice Bars

skyline

It's been pretty eventful around the country since last Friday. Working for an agency that revolves around social media only helped magnify the reaction--the office was buzzing.

The excitement even called for canceling all healthy lunch plans because:

"We are celebrating marriage quality! We are NOT getting potatoes, we are getting burgers and french fries because life is good." -- overheard at VM.

The PRIDE Festival was also happening over the weekend in NYC. #lovewins

I also was conveniently sick just in time for the weekend. Naturally, I found this as good of a time as any to try out any weird remedies that juice bars have come up with (because I need to get the full trendy-juice-bar experience before I head back to Tampa).

Current Must-Have Face Products

face products

My face has been extremely upset with me since arriving in New York.

Maybe it's that I'm not used to the air quality, maybe it's stress, maybe it's my uncanny ability to never stop touching my face. (It's probably the last one).

My skin is still not happy with me, but I've been using four products recently to hopefully fix my problems.

Boscia Detoxifying Black Cleanser
A warming gel cleanser that removes make up, deeply cleanses, and detoxifies. It doesn't leave my face feeling oily and it's definitely helping with some of the clogged pores and breakouts I'm dealing with.

Quick & Easy Breakfast: Overnight Oats

source: Rachelle Lucas

I have woken up at 5:30 a.m. every day this week. Hello real world, I don't like you. I don't know how people do it. I'm not even technically in the real world yet and I'm struggling! At 9 p.m. (the latest!) I'm falling asleep immediately.

I don't think I've gone to bed at 9 p.m. since I was like, seven. Maybe.

I'm so tired that not even the so-strong-it-will-make-you-cry iced coffee made me feel energized. It just made me feel way over-caffinated, while twitchy and still ready for a nap.

On to relevant things--waking up at 5:30 leaves room to get ready without a good breakfast. Now I don't know about you, but I can only deal with cereal for so long.

Which is why my new best friend is going to be overnight oats.

Welcome to New York

new york driving


Are you singing T-Swift with me?

I start my internship today and I couldn't be more excited (and nervous, definitely nervous). 

I'm not actually staying in the city so my weekend was spent figuring out how to drive, park, and take the train. (I can't promise that I successfully figured it out, so wish me luck). 

I'll be posting about it on here, but since Instagram is my favorite form of social media, I'll be using it pretty frequently. So if you'd like to stay updated with my summer in New York, follow me! (Expect a lot of coffee). 

Click here to subscribe to my newsletter and get new posts sent straight to your inbox. 


June Goals & Updates

june goals

It's been a while since I wrote a post about goals since the Weekly Wishes link-up ended. I wanted to keep it going, but make it monthly rather than weekly. It's kind of nice to sit down and type up some goals and updates as if I was sitting with someone and having coffee. (Ugh, I need some coffee).

Anyway, right now is also the perfect opportunity for an announcement: I've been offered and internship for the summer in New York! I'll be leaving at some unreasonable hour tonight to begin the 17 hour drive to my aunt's house in Jersey.

So if anyone has any recommendations of things to do/places to go (especially coffee shops)--I'm going to need that list ASAP.

I Guess Spotify is Cool



The title of this post pretty much sums up my thoughts for the past two-ish weeks in a slightly understated matter, because in reality, I'm pretty obsessed with Spotify.

This isn't something new--in fact, you probably are hardcore judging me for being so late--but I'm going to gush about Spotify anyway and all the greatness that I've finally accepted.

I should start with how diehard of a Pandora fan I am. Let me tell you, my Ed Sheeran pandora station knows exactly what to play, and my Fall Out Boy station knows exactly when to throw it back to middle school and play some All Time Low.

May Favorites

I feel like I haven't done one of these posts in a while because the past few months have kind of passed by without me even noticing. I'm not even entirely positive what today's date is. (I now know it's the 27th--I should probably pay my rent).

Now let's talk about some new favorites:

I'm the person that is constantly frustrated with my hair and therefore always trying new things. While this doesn't necessarily make it so that I can just put it in my wet hair and go like both my mother and Jennifer Aniston promised me, it makes my hair manageable and soft when blowdried. 

I'm trying to get back into the habit of removing my makeup before washing my face. My face wash does remove makeup, but your face will be cleaner if you actually remove your makeup first--this way your face wash is washing your actual face, and not just taking off your makeup.

97X Barbecue 2015


On Saturday, I was up bright and early to make it to St. Petersburg for the 97X Barbecue

If there one thing I love more than concerts, it's free concerts (especially when your roommate wins VIP passes). 


The lineup included two local bands, Vinyl Theater, Night Riots, In The Valley Below, Robert Delong, Panic! At The Disco (*heart eye emoji*), and AWOLNATION

Bath Bomb Reviews

bath bomb

I wrote a post a little while ago about how obsessed I was with LUSH and all of my favorite products.  I didn't go into detail about any of the bath bombs, though, because they deserve a whole post of their own.

Not only are they good for your skin, but they look pretty, too.

They're just so cool, okay.

Avobath
Avocado and olive oil softens your skin and the very strong lemon grass smell wakes you up. This bath bomb is really good for lazy days (not right before bed!).

Phoenix Rising
This apple and cinnamon bath bomb looks amazing! I loved it, however my roommate also tried one and informed me that it will stain blond hair.

Billboard Music Awards Highlights

Because I'm a sucker for anything music and award show related, I will continue to watch every award show regardless of how downhill the hosting goes and how they progressively become the "Taylor Swift Show" (nothing against T-Swift).

Here are the highlights from last night:


Taylor Swift premiered her "Bad Blood" music video starring everyone.
I personally didn't think it lived up to the hype (still love her, though).


One Direction won Top Touring Artist and Top Duo/Group.
Yes, I'm a 1D fan, don't hold it against me. I promise I like "good music" as well. There was a Zayn shout-out (fans everywhere died a little) and then Billboard cut them off before Liam could do it a second time.

Tips for Surviving Finals Week



If you're like me, you're in the middle of taking finals right now. If not, you're lucky and you still have time for some tips on how to study, destress, and try not to freak out.

Sweet Cherry Smoothie

So I've been sick for the past two weeks and having USF Week (aka work all day, every day) during that time made it even more complicated. The good part about being sick, I found a really good new smoothie recipe! I was getting tired of my go-to green smoothie and I wanted something that was supposed to be beneficial if you weren't feeling well.



Unfortunately, I didn't have any of the ingredients that I think actually made this smoothie good for when you're sick, but I improvised and it was really good anyway!

Weekly Wishes #20



Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

I actually had a very productive weekend. I went to a local concert which wasn't fantastic but I liked one of the bands and it had been a while since I had been to a live show--so it was pretty fun.

I'm also on the verge of becoming a regular at the coffee shop I like downtown. #goals

Really, though, I drink so much coffee. Between my Instagram and Snapchat I've been told on multiple occasions that I'm in a need of an intervention. 

To top everything off, I cleaned my room and bathroom this morning and now I feel a whole lot better about my life. Finals, USF Week, and projects are coming up really quickly so I have a ridiculous amount of things to do--but my room is clean, so everything's fine.

Lush Favorites




Lush is one of those stores where all self-control goes completely out the window and I just want to buy everything. Granted, being obsessed with natural beauty and bath problems isn't exactly a bad thing, but it can get expensive very quickly.

My favorite thing about Lush, though, is that they'll let you sample pretty much anything. You can try some of the products in-store or ask for little sample sizes to take home. (Which reminds me, I have a hair treatment to try!)

I wouldn't say I'm anywhere near being an expert on all of their products, I haven't tried too many in comparison to the large amount of products they have, but I definitely have a few favorites (and not-so-favorites)!

THE BEST:


1. Ocean Salt
This smells so good! It's a face and body scrub, but I mainly use it on my face just so it'll last longer. It smells like lime, salt, and the beach. I had to get used to it in the beginning, because my skin is a little oily--but everything goes well if I use my Philosophy face wash at night and then this in the morning.

Weekly Wishes #19


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

As you may have seen on Instagram, I was sampling gourmet popsicles this weekend and it was as awesome as it sounds. For one of our events at work, we're having this local business from Sarasota come out and we had to go choose the flavors we want them to bring.


pop craft ice pop display


Mexican Chocolate, Caramel Sea Salt, Blueberry Lemon Basil, and Lime Mojito were some of my favorites! 

I just wish their shop wasn't so far away and that I could go back all the time.


THIS WEEK'S GOALS:

My Post-Workout Routine



Once I'm done working out, especially after something intense, the first thing I want to do is drink gallons of water and take a nap on the gym floor.

Except you shouldn't do that because:
1. You're not done yet.
2. The gym floor is gross.

The good news is, you can drink all of the water you want.

In order to not hurt myself, and help my muscles recover the fastest, there are a few things that I like to do after working out.

1. Stretch
Stretching is so important for so many different reasons. Since your muscles are really warm, stretching right after working out will be easier and help improve flexibility. It also helps prevent your muscles from getting too tight after working out. I also make sure to focus on any muscles that I've worked extra hard--so if I went running that day, I'm going to really focus on stretching my legs.

2. Foam roll
I don't do this as often as I should, but this is really good to do before stretching. I like to use a foam roller on days when I'm really sore. It helps you get a deeper stretch in your muscles, which will help them feel better faster. (Do this before stretching, though!)

Weekly Wishes #18


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

I've finally gotten to the point where I don't feel incredibly overwhelmed with school (except thesis, I will always be overwhelmed by thesis). Spring break was supposed to be my time to relax and get caught up, but the first week back was super hectic with getting assignments in that I had refused to work on during the break. It was still really nice to get some time in at the beach, though. I hadn't realized how much I missed it and I definitely needed the hours I spent there. 

My mom and her friend came to visit me this weekend, so we got some shopping done and found a new Italian restaurant in Tampa that I plan on going back to frequently. Italian food is the key to my soul--especially eggplant parmigiana.

In other exciting news, we've welcomed a fifth roommate to the apartment. We're all big animal lovers and couldn't last any longer without one--so we got a hamster. Her name is Spencer, after Spencer Reid from Criminal Minds (we're just a little obsessed) and she is adorable. I'm personally not a huge hamster fan, but desperate times call for desperate measures and I'm in love with the little thing. 

Weekly Wishes #17


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

My boyfriend came to Tampa over the weekend for Valentine's Day and I'm pretty sure we circled the city at least twice. It seems like everything we always want to do is in opposite directions and we end up making multiple trips. 



Heart doughnuts, handmade gifts, and lots of iced coffee basically sum it up.

Oh, and geocaching--which is basically where you get gps coordinates that lead you to where something extremely difficult to find is hidden (this involved me walking to the top of an eight story parking garage and vowing to never do it again).


Staying Organized in College

staying organized in college


I had a really exciting phone call about an internship yesterday morning, so I basically celebrated in my head all day long. (Now I need them to call me back again!)

Which kind of leads me to why staying organized in college--and life in general--is really important.

When you're applying for a bunch of things (scholarships, internships, etc.), taking a bunch of classes, working, and getting involved on campus, things can get a little hectic. My key to keeping myself sane during all of this is to write everything down.

Seriously, write it down. Multiple times, in multiple places.

Just last week I had my week planned out in my planner, a to-do list on my dresser, notes on my desk at work, and a sticky note on my laptop with my homework for each day outlined. Oh, and everything is color coded because it looks cool and it helps.

Weekly Wishes #16


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.


This weekend, I figured out that the best way get to know a new place is to just walk around. Not that I'm new to Tampa, but I found so many different places just from walking around downtown with my boyfriend.



I also went to the movies to see Project Almanac and it was...interesting. 


First of all, it was one of those home-video-style movies, so that was annoying. It was actually a pretty okay story overall, but the ending was a little frustrating. It had a somewhat clear ending (I mean you kind of knew what happened), so I wasn't confused. But I was still confused?



January Favorites

I'm currently listening to the typical Tampa thunderstorm going on outside my window and wishing that I was including a pair of rain boots in this post. I will get a pair this month and not ruin any more shoes! (If anyone has any recommendations, let me know).

I feel like it's been a while since I've written one of these posts, but surprisingly I didn't have 50 things to include.

I promise everything is good, though!


Fujifilm Instax Mini: My boyfriend got me this for Christmas because he's the best and he knows I love cameras. It's really nice for those moments when you want an instant picture. While they obviously aren't the best quality photos, I really love the look of them. The pictures are slightly faded and blurred, and have that vintage-y feel to them. Like a tangible version of the perfect Instagram filter. (I can't believe I just said that).

Weekly Wishes # 15


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

This weekend was definitely the most relaxing weekend I've had since the semester started. I managed to get all of my homework done on Friday so I was able to just enjoy the whole weekend (which consisted of Gasparilla and Netflix).

I also got my designated "coffee Sunday" at Oxford Exchange with my roommate. However, I've learned that they make their coffee very strong and I can't have two. Apparently I'm a one cup of coffee person--unless I want to be hysterically laughing, extremely overwhelmed, and very jittery for the rest of the day.


I felt a little judged while ordering my second cup, anyway. I should've just taken that as my cue to not do it.

Weekly Wishes #14


Welcome to Weekly Wishesa personal goal setting community started by The Nectar Collective where you can share your upcoming dreams and connect with other goal-setters. Join us and add a link to your own goal-oriented blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to achieve your weekly aspirations.

So this post was definitely supposed to go up yesterday but apparently I lost track of my weekend.

Regardless, this works out better because my Monday has inspired some goals that I hadn't previously thought of. 

LAST WEEK'S GOALS:

1. Don't skip any workouts. Check!

2. Start a new book. Not that it's a new book, but I'm finally starting to read Harry Potter. (Maybe I shouldn't admit that I haven't actually read them all).