Saturday, May 30, 2015

The Girl on the Train WDA Book Club Review


Happpppppy Weeeeeekend!! Hope you all had a fabulous week!
Today we’re chatting about The Girl on the Train! This month we had our first book club on the blog and if you want to join the next one, make sure to check out #weREADalright ! We’ll announce June’s book next Saturday so stay tuned!

I LOVED this book, (you might have guessed since I mentioned it in my May faves)! I had heard it compared to Gone Girl by several people and while I enjoyed that one, I wasn’t crazy about the ending. However, I loved the way it was written and the mystery-ish genre so I figured I’d give GOTT a try. Plus, I feel like everyone is talking about it!

It took me about three days to get into The Girl on the Train because I had some other things going on but once I set time aside to read, I finished it in one day. I could not put it down!! It definitely kept my interest and had me wanting to see how everything was going to unfold.

If you haven’t read it yet or aren’t done, stop reading this (spoilers ahead) and go pick up the book!

The thing that I found so interesting about this book is that I hated all the characters! I thought Rachel was a hot mess who just could not get her life on track, I found Megan annoying and a cheater and a liar (obviously), and Anna was irritating and seemed like she was trying to put on an “I’m so perfect” front. I don’t feel like I knew any of them enough to have a reason to relate to any of them or like them and feel sympathy towards them. At times I felt like all three had very similar characteristics and maybe that’s what tied them all together. 

Out of everyone, I hated Tom the most but simply because I wish I knew more about him, I was very intrigued. I felt like his actions were not explained in any way. There was clearly several issues he was dealing with, lying to Rachel about her blackouts (which I thought was super WEIRD since sometimes I think he was lying just to lie) , murder, and crazy anger issues. I think it would have been interesting to have a couple of chapters from his perspective, although that might have given it away a little sooner.

Speaking of alternating chapters, that’s the one thing I found slightly difficult while reading. I think the two perspectives while having two different time frames going on was a little confusing at times and maybe too much back and forth. I found myself referring back to previous chapters to see exactly what point I was at and to make sure I had the correct time frame. 

I kind of suspected the ending but kept doubting myself. Scott was too obvious, the red headed man would have been too random and I just didn’t think it would have been her psychiatrist. I thought it might have been Anna for a little, which would have been crazy.

The only question I still have about the book is the pile of clothes that were mentioned twice, did it have any significance? Did I miss something?? I feel like since they were mentioned a second time they had to mean something but I can't tell! Help a sister out will ya?!


Did you guys like the book? 
Did you guess the end or were you surprised? 
Tell us, we’d love to discuss!!



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it’s been fun,
clancy



Friday, May 29, 2015

How to Make the Most of Your Mornings

Recently I've fallen in love with mornings. Don't get me wrong I loveeeee my sleep, and I'm really good at sleeping. However, since I have to get up early for work Monday-Friday now, I've become very aware of how peaceful mornings can be. There's something so restful and quiet about beginning a new day and getting a fresh start.

I've also noticed that how my morning goes sort of sets the tone for the rest of the day. And a hectic morning will not result in a stress-free day. So, here's how I've been able to start each day on a good note by making the most of my mornings:

1. Plan Ahead


I know you're tired, I know you just want to watch some Netflix and chill in bed. Trust me...I want to do the same thing. But spending an extra 20 minutes to prep for your next day makes a world of difference! Glance over your planner or calendar so you know what's headed your way the next day. Pack a gym bag ahead of time and put it in your car so you don't have any excuses! Lay out your outfit for the next day. This has been so helpful for me because I actually have time at night to enjoy picking out an outfit rather than grabbing the first thing I see before I have to rush out the door. Make a little plan so that's one (or two or three) less thing you have to worry about in the morning.

2. Wake Up With a Work Out



This is one sure thing that will wake me up in the morning. If I drag my booty out of bed before I even have time to think, throw on my work out gear and get outside I come back wide awake and feeling great! Whatever way you enjoying getting in some a.m. exercise do it! Yoga? Running? Class at the gym? Anything that gets you moving in the morning.

3. Give Yourself Something to Look Forward to


It's ok to have something to look forward to in the morning! Even if it's a weekly trip to Starbucks (gotta get those rewards points!) or wearing a new outfit or bringing delicious doughnuts into work. Any little thing that makes you happy and will give you a little extra motivation to get our of bed.

4. Be Inspired

What a way to get motivated for the day! Everyone needs a little inspiration in the morning. Whether it's a morning devotional, journaling, your favorite quote, an inspirational book, ANYTHING that gets you pumped up and inspired by life! For me, I start my day with a quick read from my go-to devotional Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. I am also a big supporter of inspirational quotes as iPhone backgrounds. My current is this one from designlovefest.com 

They have a TON of beautiful downloads for your tech! You can find this one here.

I hope this little post got you excited to wake up tomorrow! Don't miss out on the loveliness that is the morning.

//Porter//

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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

May Faves!!


May was a WEIRD month. Not good or bad necessarily …just a little weird. I’m in some sort of funk and am really hoping that June is going to turn it around!




Anyway, here’s some things I’ve loved throughout the month!!



Beauty





My new go-to lip combo!! The funny thing about these three are that I don’t really love any of these on their own, but together they are rocking my world. Rimmel Exaggerate lip liner in Natural, Maybelline lipstick in Daringly Nude, and NYX butter gloss in Creme Brûlée. It’s my perfect nude lip color. I’ve noticed that there is definitely a difference between your “my lips but better” color and your perfect nude. MLBB is more of a neutral that just enhances your lips and the nude makes more of a statement. I have reached for this combo a ton this month!!



I know I just talked about a brow product last month, but I’ve added a new one to my routine. This Anastasia brow wiz is fabulous! The tip of the pencil is so thin and really allows you to fill in your brows in the most natural way. I wear this alone on a daily basis and pair it with my Ulta brow gel if I need my brows to be a little more bold.


I picked up this L’OREAL Infallible Pro-Matte foundation earlier this month because I have heard nothing but great things about it and I am definitely jumping on this train. I love it so much!! It’s the perfect finish, matte like I normally reach for but not powder-y. It’s medium to full coverage but doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. I’m interested to try the setting spray from this line as well.


Face, Hair and Body

I LOVE a good face mask from LUSH. I think my favorite is the Cupcake mask, however they were out when I went (MAJOR sad face) I picked up Oatifix which I have used before and really enjoy. It doesn’t target oily skin, which I suffer from, but my skin has actually been a little on the dry side lately. This one contains mashed banana, and ground almond which are meant to soften the skin. Definitely recommend if your skin is just looking for a little loving!

Florida summers are brutal for my hair. It hates the humidity and I definitely don’t blame it. However that means that my hair usually ends up in a top knot by 11AM. The Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Spray has definitely been helping with that. It is meant to give you that beachy effortless wave that is so perfect for summer. I love curling my hair like normal and then spraying this all over and working it in. It helps my hair look “less done” so when the humidity starts to get to it, it doesn’t mess up a more styled look. 

I had my first beach day of the summer and got WAY more sun than I was expecting. My favorite after sun lotion is definitely Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration. It smells DIVINE!! Like I can’t even explain to you how much I love this scent. The combo of aloe and lotion is perfect too! It’s moisturizing and cooling, which is what your skin needs after a day in the sun!

Random


I don’t want to say too much about this because I’ve got our first BOOKCLUB REVIEW coming on Saturday, but The Girl on the Train is definitely on my list of favorites for the month! I finished it in just about three days!


Trader Joe’s hashbrowns. I can’t stop eating you. Why are you so good?! I have never really been one to love breakfast food but these babies are a game changer. I’m sure that any brand makes frozen hashbrowns, they’re not that special, so just hash browns in general, I love you.

I have really been enjoying Alex & Sierra’s cd It’s About Us. The duo won The X Factor …last season? I’m not too sure I didn’t really watch but I LOVE THEM. They are the cutest couple ever and have the most amazing voices. I fell in love with their performance of Gravity they did on the show and have loved them ever since. Plus their from Orlando so that’s cool too!!

Also- guilty pleasure of the month, Beyonce and Nicki Minaj’s Feeling Myself. I have to be honest I’m not on the Queen B train, but this song is PRAISE HANDS EMOJI. I find myself jamming to it all the time. 

Hope you all had a great May and are ready for an even better June!

What were your faves from the month? 
Anything you recommend to add to my life for next month?



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it’s been fun,
clance

Friday, May 22, 2015

So Fresh and So Clean: My Fav Cleansing Masks!

Recently I've been on a face mask kick. There's just something so relaxing and refreshing about them so me! I feel like I'm giving my skin some always-needed TLC. I have naturally oily and acne-prone skin...woohoo. So I'm always looking for new ways to cleanse my face that really just the job done. I'm really loving all four of these face masks for different reasons. Remember: not all cleansing masks should be treated equally.


First up is Formula 10.0.6's Deep Down Detox Mud Mask. This puppy is awesomeeeee! Definitely one of those you can feel working. After you put it on it feels sort of tingly but once it starts to dry that goes away. After you take it off you can immediately feel your skin is softer. And the light orange and bergamot scent is to die for!


(please excuse the cat tail...apparently I can no longer take blog pics alone.)


These next two are both from Freeman's which has always been a fav brand of mine. I snagged these two at Ulta when they were having a BOGO sale. YAS! I chose this first one purely because it said "anti-stress" duhhh I need that on my face! This one also made my skin feel silky smooth after and really refreshed. And less stressed I guess too! However...do NOT, I repeat DO NOT leave this on longer than directed. You WILL turn blue.



The first two masks I mentioned are your typical "smooth them on, let them dry, then you know you're done" masks. The next two are a little different.

The second one from Freeman's is the Black Sugar and Charcoal Mask. When you put it on it feels just like a scrub and you're like uhhhhh how is this going to stay on? Just use a light layer that way you don't have clumps of sugar falling off your face.


Big fan...but with a disclaimer: this stuff pulls all the gunk to the surface of your face. Meaning, after I did this mask my face broke out like crazy the next day and I freaked out. But after further research (cough cough consulting Clancy and watching my YouTube beauty blogger girl crush Essie Button cough cough) I figured out this was normal. The mask is bringing up all the deep down dirt that's stuck in your pores. So if you have a hot date...don't use this mask the night before.


Last is the Plantidote Mega Mushroom Skin Calming Mask from Origins. Again, doesn't really dry just hangs out on your skin until you take it off.


With Origins you're spending a little more but I definitely feel like you get your money's worth. I used this one a few times and really noticed that my acne had improved. Not gone away but no crazy breakouts and definitely more manageable. My only complaint with this one is the smell. It's not really bad, just weird. Probably the mushrooms ya know? 


Well there we have it! My current fav cleansing masks! Leave a comment and let me know what your favorites are! I'm always interested in finding new ones!!!

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//Porter//


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

She was an American girl, raised on promises


I love any holiday that celebrates America and gives me an excuse to have a beer in my hand. CUE MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND! 

Today, I wanted to share two looks with you that I will more than likely be rocking this weekend while enjoying good company and being American. 








This first look is just about taking different pieces from my wardrobe and pairing them together to make a MDW appropriate outfit. Sometimes, depending on where you are and what your plans for the weekend are, you want your look to be a little more understated. Reach for something red, white, or blue (obviously) and pair it with something more neutral. I went with a red and white stripped tank I picked up from Old Navy recently and just wore some black shorts. I found some blue and white bangles in my jewelry stash and thought they would go perfect to take my outfit one step further. 






This second look is definitely a little more casual and way more ‘Clance’ To me, nothing is more American than some denim shorts, an American flag tank, classic silver aviators and some white sneakers. Cute, functional and says “I’m here to party” You can find American themed apparel anywhere, and especially in the summer with Memorial Day and July 4th coming up. I’m a fan of wearing an American flag tank year round, but this weekend is 100% the time to break it out and wear it proud!


Just wanted to take a minute to say a huge THANK YOU to all of those who serve this great country of ours. You guys rock and make me more than proud to be an American, for real.

Hope you guys enjoyed today’s post and found some inspiration for your MDW outfits! I’ll be spending this weekend drinking at Universal and then adventuring through Tampa with my best friend! What are you guys doing? Any fun plans?





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it’s been fun,
clance



Friday, May 15, 2015

5 Tips to Stay Motivated for your Workouts

You guysssssss I am SERIOUSLY dropping the ball on my fitness goals for 2015. I've recently had a job change (holla!) but I am still not used to working a 9-5, Monday through Friday. (IF YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR ME ON THIS FRONT PLEASE HAALLLPPPP!!!) 

So needless to say, I am really struggling when it comes to finding time to work out. I've been thinking a lot about it and it all comes down to my motivation. When I'm leaving work at 5pm, I'm tired! I don't want to go to the gym, I don't want to go for a run, I want to go home and sleep! But after a week or so of this routine I really start to feel it. I just feel super unenergized and really uncomfortable in my own skin. So I've been brainstorming some ways to help me get motivated to work out (for me this is mostly running but I'm trying to change things up whoop whoop!). I've come up with 5 Tips to Stay Motivated and it's really been helping me out! I'm feeling healthier already people!

1. PUT IT ON THE CALENDAR


I cannot stress this enough. I had it in my mind that I could just go to the gym when I had a free moment. Well, some days you simply don't have any free moments! And when you do, an invite to dinner with friends is wayyyy more enticing than a 2-mile run. Putting it in my planner means I already have it set as part of my day, I can work around it but since it's written down...it's getting done!

2. PHONE A FRIEND


Oh my gawwwd this is so helpful. When you make plans with someone to work out you're now accountable. They'll know if you're not in spin class. They'll call and text you to get your lazy butt to the gym because they don't want to be there alone! And working out with a buddy is so much more fun! You can chat while you struggle through crunches and laugh at how awkward you are when you try to do squats. 

3. CHANGE LOCATIONS

The gym can become a pretty depressing place if you're staring at the same treadmill 4 times a week. Hashtag yawn. So change it up! Run outside! Explore a local park! Take a new class (Shout out to my friend Robyn who convinced me to try a hip-hop class. Probably the coolest I'll ever feel for a while). Keep your workouts interesting.

4. PUMP THE JAMS


It is a sheer fact that if I don't have music I will NOT work out. I applaud people who can just go outside and run without headphones. Like how?! I don't get it. But make yourself a playlist that you're excited to listen to! I'm a big supported of Spotify playlists, a personal fav for me is the ever-inspiring T Pain.

5. SET GOALS

This is a hard one for me but probably the most important. I've been calling myself a "runner" for about a year now which is great! However, I've met my running goals. So now when I hit my 2-mile mark it's like eh, you've done this before. To stay motivated set attainable goals. This could be something like setting a time for your mile, or maybe even trying a new workout or class. Giving yourself goals gives you a reason and a challenge for working out.

Boom! There it is! I hope this will help you guys out like it's been helping me out! Let us know how you stay motivated and send us a comment below or use the hashtag #wedressalright on Instagram.

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//Porter//

Friday, May 8, 2015

French Press: Pros and Cons

I've always wanted to be one of those people who wakes up really early, puts on comfy slippers and a robe, walks to the kitchen to slowly and carefully make a delicious breakfast then enjoys it out on the terrace while listening to the birds chirp outside. News flash: I am 100% NOT one of those people! I keep working on it but continue to fail miserably as I hit my snooze but for the 5th time and end up 15 minutes late to work because I had to drive through Starbucks.

But in my attempt to start making the most of my mornings, I decided to start with the most important part: coffee. We've had an unused French Press in our house for God knows how long. So I thought "Hey, this might be something you're in to." And I totally am. But this process did come with some pros and cons. So here I am to tell it to you straight so you don't waste what precious time you have in the morning.

Pro: A serious sense of accomplishment. You brewed that darn thing yourself!


Con: Using a French Press is a process, not difficult just tedious. And with coffee so easily accessible nowadays I'm not sure I'll make this process and every day thing.



Pro: You can taste the difference. It just tastes more coffee-y if that makes sense. Like usually I add tons of cream and sugar to my coffee. French Press coffee I just drank black.


Con: The cleaning process. Lots of pieces. Lots of parts to clean.


Pro: It causes you to slow down in the morning and CHILL. After the whole process you really want to take the time to enjoy the finished product.


Con: Not enough for everyone...but too much for me. In my little family, we didn't have enough for one full cup each. But I really didn't want to drink 32 ounces of coffee on my own. My heart would explode.


When all was said and done, I'm a fan of the French Press. Personally, I'll only make it a weekend or special occasion thing because it's quite involved. But taste-wise...totally worth the time.


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