Update: Overload

Just a quick note to let all readers know my posts may be a bit sporadic in coming. Obligations have reared their head, and between my two (three?) jobs and other responsibilities, I’ll be cutting back. Ack! Not what I want to have to write, and probably not what you want to hear. Dang life–always getting in the way. ūüėČ

I realize this is a little late in coming as it’s already been awhile since my last post. However, better late than never is a motto I now choose to fall back on. So! Please expect a review and some fun free-writing in the following days. And beyond that, I’ll be here… reading all your lovely blogs and (sporadically) maintaining my own.

Thanks so much guys!

‚ô• Jenn

Why You Should Sing Badly

“Oh no, I don’t sing.”

I hear this so often. Along with the matching comment,¬†“I don’t dance.”

Personally, I know I don’t sound like Celine Dion and I may never be Dancing with the Stars, but marching to my own drummer has been a life-long resolution of mine; even if, as Nietzsche said, others can’t hear the music. Life isn’t a party, it’s a flipping parade. We share our stage with so many other bright stars, and because of that, we tend to lose sight of our own spectacular selves. We lose the fun-loving freedom of our youth. Growing up, for so many, equates to giving up.

I don’t quiet down in a car full of strangers. I belt loud and proud, smile stamped firmly on my face. And generally, that kind of attitude is contagious. Before you know it, a whole room has joined¬†in. Freedom to be ourselves is supposedly apparent in our current society. To a degree, at least; until it becomes too uncomfortable for others to bear. It’s so odd to me that as we grow older, we are required to “mature”. Not just mentally or emotionally, either; but in a repressed kind of way. As if aging is a reason to become reserved and surrender all spontaneity.

I burst into laughter wherever I go. I try not to dampen my personality just for the sake of others. And yes, sometimes I get a dirty look or three for deigning to be happy in public. Ridiculous! 

The short time I’ve been in this world, the one thing I’ve observed universally is people trying to control each other. I’ve been hurried along and told to slow down–instructed to seize opportunities of my youth and commanded to wait. Whatever decisions I’m making always seem (in the eyes of one person or another) to be the wrong ones. And at 25, I’m done taking orders. Please leave all life advice with my secretary. I’m no longer¬†available to take calls.

Get silly, before you forget how! Pack a bag and go on a freaking vacation. Buy something outlandish, just to let yourself have it. Storm through each day like there’s theme music playing just for you–and never let anyone take away your will to let go and have fun. If you’re not out there taking risks, what’s the point anyways? Don’t. Hold. Back.¬†If I could give myself one gift to claim at the end of it all, it would be the memories I’d went out of my way to make, despite everyone who told me I’d regret them.¬†Those things you worry you can’t or shouldn’t do… they’re the ones you’ll always be grateful you did.

WANTED: Nike Free 5.0 N7

WANTED: Laced or unstrung. Reward if captured. Report directly to Jenn.

I don’t know how many of you are fitness enthusiasts–but the Nike Free line has been my heaven on earth (or foot, I suppose). I have a pair of the old 5.0’s in coral that are my go-to runners and have seriously upped my game! Soft, flexible material that moves with the natural motion of your foot. Great grip and a design that helps propel you forward with ease. I didn’t need another running shoe; and I was content on wearing those until they were dead. Until I saw… the newest 5.0 trainers.

With much elation, let me announce that the Nike Free 5.0 N7 Women’s Training Shoe is finally here!¬†I’ve been waiting for these suckers for weeks. The design, the pattern, the colors! It’s everything I could crave in a trainer, with the same great concept that made me fall in love with my other 5.0’s. Plus perfectly geared for weight lifting, basketball, or other adventures. And now of course here I am, without any¬†fun money remaining!¬†Ah well. The wait will make it all the more sweet. ¬†‚ô•

What about you? What sports related accessory have you been dying to get your hands on?

Review: Shea Moisture Body Products


Today I’m taking a moment to cover a rather¬†underappreciated category¬†of beauty products: bath and body items. I’m typically a handmade soap kind of person (the kind that other people make, anyways), so I felt keen on exploring the avenue of bath and shower-time pampering just a bit more.

SheaM7
Shea Moisture is a drugstore brand that caught my eye. They come in pretty packaging and scents of all variety, but I chose the coconut and hibiscus because it was light, floral but not overpowering, and already vaguely relaxing. The sticker on each item touts their cute origins story, as well as a list of no-no’s these beauties are free from. *Ahem* No parabens, phthalates, paraffin, gluten, propylene glycol, mineral oil, synthetic fragrance, synthetic color, DEA, or sulfates. And also–NO animal testing. Nice!

So how did they fare in¬†my extensive trials? Good, for sure. Better than great, and just shy of grand. For the affordability factor, they can’t be beat. Each one ranges from $7-$10, and typically,¬†they seem to be on sale. There was a nice one running when I stopped in, so I got all of mine BOGO 50% off!

SheaM3The best product, in my opinion, was the Dry Oil Mist. The label proclaims that it is for “brightening and toning”, but really, it’s just a quick, awesome way to add moisture to your skin. Phenomenal to spritz on in the morning, or just after a shower. This is probably my favorite item because it absorbs with such ease.¬†Fantastic as a finishing touch to keep legs and arms silky smooth.

The Hand & Body Scrub was selected for my guy. He has issues with dry, sensitive skin, and whole-body exfoliating seemed to be the way to go! I sampled this once in the shower, but personally, I found it a tad too abrasive. For myself, the Foaming Milk & Body Wash was much better. Ultra rich and creamy, working this into a good lather makes me feel like I’ve stepped out of the spa every time!

SheaM4Back to the scrub. For a person who has rougher, drier skin, this number seems to work wonders. My boyfriend swears by it now, actually preferring it to the body wash (which is apparently too slick for him to really do anything). The first ingredient in this, and what it is largely made of, is sugar. Now I’ve never tried a sugar scrub at home, but I’ve heard of the exfoliating benefits of sugar before, and this stuff really takes the cake! Since using this, my boyfriend has noted less irritation, less flaking, and healthier skin overall. As I said, it is very abrasive, so it may not be for you if you already have naturally soft skin. But for the end results, it’s definitely worth a try!

Almost every product in this line contains a combo of vitamin E, coconut oil, jojoba oil, shea butter, olive oil, and aloe–all ingredients your body will thank you for. They smell heavenly, and leave you feeling refreshed and renewed. If I had to suggest just one item (an impossibility!) I would have to say to give their massage oils a try. Longest lasting product I’ve found, slightly warming, and sooo indulgent. Try this on yourself or a partner and be amazed. You can thank me later. ūüėČ

Rating: 4.5/5
4starhalf

How to Hog the Bathroom, Effectively

Men are great. Truly, they are. But if there is one thing my¬†man will never understand, it’s that sometimes, a girl just needs her privacy.¬†The sound of him banging on the door is one I’ve come to loathe. Such is the way of things when you¬†live in a two person household with only one bathroom. Usually, this isn’t something that bothers me. I’ve lived too long slapping an outfit together or¬†some concealer on my face though, and I¬†won’t do it again…¬†¬†never again.

To quote the greatest video game of all time:

So how do you hog the bathroom, effectively?

Perhaps I should rephrase that. The real question becomes: How do you get the space you need for your morning/nighttime ritual, without offending the person you share half of your life with? And truthfully, that’s a hard question to answer. The key here, though, is in compromise–and some very careful planning. As Sun Tzu said, the path¬†to victory is in knowing one’s enemies, as well as oneself.

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.    -Sun Tzu, The Art of War

If you want the upper hand, then play to win. Getting to know my spouse’s schedule has been key in working around these little incidents. If I can anticipate when he’s most likely to need time to get ready, or wanting to shower and shave, less stress abounds for us all.

I know what you’re thinking…¬†Should it really be that hard though?

Sometimes you give up certain privileges for companionship. And being in a couple means learning to live around each other. There are reasons people stay single; usually, finding happiness with someone just outweighs the little benefits of living alone. (I may revoke this statement periodically.)

The last piece that you need is:¬†Communication.¬†If there’s an issue, try talking to each other! I know if I just approached my guy and explained that I wanted time for some personal things, he’d be more than happy to give me that courtesy. Respect is a big part of a solid relationship, and one that you both should work to build upon. I think as girls, we fall into this mindstate of needing to look flawless all the time. It’s difficult, having someone see all your imperfections–especially when it’s someone who you only want to show your best to. Just be open and sincere. Homeostasis… that all comes in time. ūüėČ

And to leave things off on a lighter note, Andy Grammer!

Living in a Dreamland

Exciting news… I picked out a new engagement ring!! ‚̧

Spur of the moment, my boyfriend decided we should swing into a jeweler’s and try on rings for fun. We’ve been engaged a while, and I already had a small solitaire ring he’d gotten me after proposing. I thought it was just for entertainment; until he turned to me seriously and said, Why not get one?

Like a true rollercoaster ride, I’ve been down so long lately the sudden rush of being on top has successfully¬†taken my breath away. Life is good; it’s better than good. I felt like I had stepped into the twilight zone as I tried to talk him out of the purchase. In the end, though, my will just wasn’t strong enough… ūüėÄ It made my heart sing when I put it on. And walking out of the store wearing it, I noticed that he too was grinning from ear to ear.

It makes me feel good, he told me. He gets to see the symbol of our love and feel proud of the fact that he gave it to me. And I adore it beyond belief. This is the ring I’ve dreamed of since I was a child¬†— a ring fit for a fairytale. I just had to share!

 

‚ô• Jenn