Tuesday, December 23, 2014

seasons of life.

with another season of my young adult life under my belt, i can't help but notice how many (needed) lessons god has thrown my way this semester. i just arrived home in wisconsin for a couple days for the holidays, & i've had some time to reflect on the whirlwind of a couple months that just took place.

so far, so good on the apartment front. i've managed to not set the place or myself on fire. i still don't know how to cook, therefore i'm quite hungry most of the time. my meals consist of frozen smart one dinners & a fair share of mediocre sandwiches. i'm so bad of a cook that i mixed the seasoning & water in a separate bowl when i made tacos for the first time…. yeah, i'm still embarrassed as i type that out three months later. i don't think i can consider myself an adult until i can turn a frozen chicken breast into an edible one. every time i head to the grocery store i think to myself, "yeah, this is the week i'm gong to start cooking." i buy an excessive amount of ingredients for just myself & the meals i think i'm going to make. my success rate of completing these meals is at 0%. sadly, my roommates are getting used to my moldy food taking up space in our fridge. "who's nasty cheese is this..?! it's been here for weeks." "it's probably lauren's." yes, there's a 100% chance it is. this is a reminder of the excess i carry around in my life. less will always be more.

i like to consider myself half & half on the introverted/extroverted scale. i love my social life, but i love my alone time a tad bit more. so, much to my surprise i've throughly enjoyed sharing my living space with my roommates. we've made it through half of our time together with minimal drama (you can't put five girls in a four bedroom apartment & expect it to be sunshine & roses). coming home after a long day to woman you feel comfortable telling anything to, is something that i've come to love & i'm sure will miss once our time comes to an end. we've shared some hilarious moments & some not so laughable ones, but i'm so glad i have them along my side as we go through some of the same seasons in our lives. i'm confident in saying that they are the reason i love my time at college so much. it's so heartwarming to know that my friends who were strangers a year ago, have turned into my second family.

somehow i finished my third semester of college. "the best years" of my life are going by at lightening speed. i'm at peace with this though, because that means that exams are almost a thing of the past & soon i'll be kicking ass at my dream job. i didn't finish as strong as i would've liked, but i'm using that as fuel for second semester's fire. falling behind & procrastinating are things i'm very good at. luckily, i've always been able to finish what i need to even if it's at 11:58, a minute before the dropbox closes at 11:59. i'm not going to start advocating procrastination because it adds way more stress to my life than there needs to be, but so far it hasn't completely failed me. my goal for next semester is to be way more organized & to put the complimentary school planner to good use. i want my sunday nights to be filled with church & netflix. starting your week off with hours of homework is just way too depressing. why i continue to torture myself with it is something i'll never understand.

as you can see, i've taken an embarrassing leave of absence from this blog. i let school, work, & life become top three in my life & the free time i did have was spent doing absolutely nothing. i've missed writing & connecting with ya'll. i'm hoping to use winter break as a chance to recharge & get re-inspired in my little corner of the internet. stay tuned for lots of catch up posts!

i hope this finds you curled up on the couch at your own home, enjoying the holiday season & cherishing your loved ones. i'm off to do the same. 

xoxo. lauren.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

instagram ketchup.

here's what my life has looked like lately on instagram. it's prettier with a filter.

xoxo. lauren.

Friday, September 19, 2014

learning process.

^^ god rocks, ya'll. passed this on my way home from class & noticed it when i needed it the most. ^^

i haven't been here as much as i've liked & i've been itching to get a writing session out. bare with me, here. school has been in session for about a month now, & over the three month long summer break i seemed to have forgotten how it works. i've come to the realization that i took not having a job & naps on the futon for granted last year. (i've only napped twice, so far. what?!?) nothing is more of a slap in the face than being on your own. i need to work five days a week in order to afford my life, & the other two days are now filled with appointments & new found grown up duties. also came to another realization that this is how it's going to be for the rest of my life.

i'm currently struggling with how to "do" my new chapterbalance is key, they say. & i myself don't know how to balance. there aren't enough hours in the day to do school, work, & life in general. learning how to prioritize what i have to do to get it all done is my new challenge & so far i've failed. i'll be a little dramatic & say i feel like i'm drowning. i'm up to my knees in homework & when i come home from work all i really want to do is sleep & watch sherlock (my current obsession). i think my key to having a balance is going to be sacrifice. i'm not going to get to watch sherlock every night & i'm not going to get to go to every activity my friends partake in like i want to. my new reality is that i have no choice but to do homework after work & the world isn't going to end when i miss out on things. i've got to start holding myself accountable & kick my to-do list's ass every. single. day.

i've been making a conscious effort to attend church every sunday morning, & i've been amazed at the result. i feel so much more grounded & centered after i leave. it's the kick i need to set my week off on the right note. i've learned that on the other side of all the curveballs life is throwing at me, god is always going to be there. my faith is the one thing i can't afford to loose.

one wise soul i used to know said this about how to tackle life's valleys and peaks. using this as my new battle plan & life mantra: 

"the way i go about any type of challenge, no matter how big or small: i break it down into
small parts that i can manage without being overwhelmed. it’s a continually evolving process, since every challenge is different, and i have to adapt to unexpected changes. i’m lucky that i enjoy observing details and fixing things (it’s the “enginerd” in me). after all, life is a continual progression of challenges, so if you can find pleasure in actively overcoming each one, you’ll have an unending supply of opportunities to experience the satisfaction of a job well-done." 

i'm not always going to have it together, life is a process. leaning that, that's okay though.
xoxo. lauren. 

Monday, September 8, 2014

parachute pants aren't just for mc hammer no mo'

blazer: thrifted. / vneck: old navy. / pants: old navy. (similar) / wedges: gap. / purse: forever 21. (similar) /

it amazes me how style trends from different decades continue to find their way back to being in style today. the parachute pant trend from the 80's is back in full force. i'm a personal fan of these because of their "comfy-cute" factor. i chose to dress mine up with some wedges & a tailored blazer. i also love them with a sweater & flats as well. 

mc hammer should be so proud. xoxo. lauren. 

Friday, August 29, 2014

3 way chambray.

chambray: gap. /

if you take anything away from me & this blog i'd want it to be this: the chambray is the only shirt you absolutely need hanging in your closet. (okay, maybe this isn't the most important thing. but, it's definitely top 5 material.) this magic little shirt is so versatile for your wardrobe. it can be dressed up & dressed down & all the way back again. i chose a casual look, a dressed up look, & an in-between look for this post. these are my personal favorite ways to rock my chambray. but, the options are endless for this closet staple. i'd recommend this one from gap. it's a softer denim, which makes it easier to pair it with multiple items in your closet. a chambray can be many things, but boring is not one of them.

now, go get that chambray ladies! xoxo. lauren.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

flower child.

top: thrifted / skirt: (pac sun) / shoes: gap /

floral was my obsession this summer. i've always been drawn to the more softer & feminine looks. i scored this skirt on the clearance rack at pac sun earlier this summer. & let's be real, nothing is better than falling in love at the clearance rack. the light & breezy material made it the perfect skirt for one of my favorite times of the year.

this summer went by faster than the last. it doesn't look like life has intentions of slowing down anytime soon. i start my sophomore year of college tomorrow & i'm oddly enthusiastic about it. i've loved being back in town this last week reuniting with faces i grew to love last year. as cheesy as it is when they tell you, you really find your true friends while your away at college. i'm so anxious to see what adventures await us this year.  

xoxo. lauren. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

white hot.

top: (thrifted) / pants: (thrifted) / jacket: forever 21. (similar) / sandals: gap (similar) / fedora: target (similar)

i'm not ready to let summer go out the window just yet, so i'm saying no to plaid & yes to this summer's go-to look. all white get-ups have been all the rage this season. it's about time white gets the credit it so deserves! "no white after labor day" is a myth ya'll! i'll stand by my new favorite color & say you can rock white all year round! if you're not too keen on an all white ensemble, add some neutrals or classic pieces (i.e. black sandals, jean jacket) to compliment the look a little better. i threw my fedora on because not only have i been living in it this summer, but it helps keeping the look from being too basic. the great thing about white is it's a jack of all trades. you can keep your look neutral, or you can go as bright & bold as you'd like!

xoxo. lauren.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

five important truths i learned this summer.

you have to work for what you want. 

this ones a real downer: nothing will come easy in this life of ours. thankful my parents set this example up for me ever since i was a little girl. but, living under their roof for the last eighteen years of my life, i haven't really been left to fend for myself all that much. man, have times changed folks. i'll be living in my very own apartment this year & paying my very own bills for the first time in my life. i've never been good with my finances, i'll be the first to admit that. i tend to see things in the moment when it comes to my money. for example: this shirt looks super cute right now. i need this shirt right now. today i have to see it like this: this shirt looks cute now, but it won't look cute in two weeks when you don't have any money to make yourself some dinner. i learned that money does in fact look better in the bank. it's been rewarding watching my savings account grow for the first time in my life. spending more time working & making money doesn't suck all that much when you realize you actually have money to do the things you want. & the best part? you earned it yourself.

fill your life with positives.

i'm talking about positive people, positive environments, & positive attitudes. i think this truth finds itself forgotten about because most of the time we don't believe we have a way out. it's almost like we think we're stuck in the job we hate, or the relationship that you know there is no future to build on, or people that you find slowly starting to bring you down. this summer i realized many times this isn't the case. if you're not doing something that brings positive outcomes in your life, cut your losses & move on. there are so many other people & opportunites that will do nothing but make you better & lift you up. it's our job to keep looking until we find them.

take a nap when you're tired.

this one might actually be the most important truth of them all. i spent many late nights working this summer & because of that my body never found itself a regular sleep schedule. i also started to donate plasma to help sustain my (lack of) college student budget & i found myself feeling nothing but drained afterwards. i'm a very strong advocate for power naps. sometimes you need to lay down, put your phone on silent, & recharge your body for twenty minutes. you'll wake up feeling refreshed & ready to tackle the rest of your day. only allow yourself twenty minutes, though. anything longer than that you'll be late for work & even more exhausted than when you laid down in the first place.

enjoy the moment.

i struggle with this truth a lot. i've never been one to be able to just sit & enjoy what is happening in my life today. my mind likes to do this thing where she goes to worrying about tomorrow, & the day after that. i've been more conscious about working on this & when i actually allow myself to enjoy the sun that is shining now, i feel so much peace. as my grandmother's alzheimer's is starting progress itself daily, i've seen that this truth is actually so important. when we go to get ice cream she's as happy as can be. we know she will forget about our treat a couple hours later, but in that moment with a spoon in her hand she is so delighted. you've got to focus on & picture that bowl of carmel cashew in every aspect of your life.

be your own best friend.

i don't mean for this truth to sound selfish. but when it comes to taking care of yourself i believe there is no choice but to be. a lot of people my age aren't in tune to their own bodies. they don't know what their minds need. it took me awhile, but i know myself more than anyone else in my life. this comes with treating yourself with respect in every area of your life. respect what you put in your body & allow yourself a couple days a week to strengthen yourself by staying active. respect yourself by only surrounding yourself with people who are your biggest fans. don't allow time to think negative thoughts about the people who aren't rooting for you. respect your own thoughts & know that it's okay to not have everything together at all times. have faith in something. pray to whoever you need to pray to when things aren't okay. for me, prayer has given me something to lean when things aren't crystal clear. god will always be the one constant in my life. with this truth it's vital to know you're the advocate for your own life. you have the power to decide where you go & how you'll handle the unexpected moments when they come your way.

it's no secret i don't have everything figured out. i've got so much left to learn in this life of mine. but one thing i know for sure is that there will always be truths that sneak their way to us when we need them the most. some will be nice & easy. others, not so much. both kinds of truths are necessary & will always leave us stronger than before. there will be many more truths that will work their way into my life someday, but i know the future holds things that are too incredible to even picture right now. i'm so ready to see what the universe will throw at me as i enter the next chapter of my life!

i'm headed to bed with a grateful heart.

 xoxo. lauren. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

a little maxi never killed nobody.

maxi dress: (old navy) // floppy hat: target. similar (here) & (here) // shoes: target. similar (here) // clutch: forever21. similar (here) //

it's no secret that maxi dresses are the one closest staple you need this summer. they are the easiest pieces to transform from brunch in the morning to dinner at night. love. i got this one on major clearance at old navy. earlier this year. it's was a little long so these tiny wedges give it the perfect length. usually, flats or sandals work better because most maxi's will hit just a little above your heel. i'm thinking a couple more maxi's are in order for me!

xoxo. lauren.