Saturday, April 30, 2016

Mother's Day Gifts

I think we can all agree that our mother's are one of the biggest blessings in our lives. Mother's are our teachers, rays of sunshine, shopping companions (always), cheerleaders, personal chefs, wisdom tellers, shoulders to cry on, and best friends. I sure know that I couldn't be luckier to call this jack of all trades Mom.

They are a constant source of the strongest, most unwavering love. On the good days and the bad, you always know you have your mother's love behind you. If I know what unconditional love is, it is because of my mother. I truly believe there is no love quite like that of a mother's. We are their flesh & blood, and we are forever indebted to them for giving us the most beautiful gift there is, life. If there is nothing else you can possibly think of to thank your mother for, this should be it. You are here because of her!

With that being said, with Mother's Day quickly approaching, I thought I would share some of my top gift picks for all the mothers out there! Although I don't think any of us will ever be able to fully express our gratitude for all our mother's have done for us, a nice gift is a great place to start. If your mother is one of those people who has everything and is impossible to shop for, then doing something fun together is another great option. Going to a winery, out to brunch, or for a hike together are fun ways to show your love and appreciation. Doing something fun together and making memories are often the best types of gifts!

To all the mother's I know out there, you are all the BEST! Mother's day is a day all about you. Enjoy it because you all most certainly deserve it. And to my most favorite mother of them all, Mom - you are the most beautiful example of the type of woman I aspire to be. Thank you for everything. I don't know where or who I would be without you. I love you to the moon and back. xo.


Shop here... 

xo. G 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Mornings


Anyone that knows me well can tell you I have never really been a huge morning person. I am the epitome of a night owl - I love staying up late, I am productive late at night, and I hate getting up in the morning. The snooze button is seriously my best friend, which is not always a good thing. The thing I've come to realize though is that it isn't so much the fact that I hate mornings in and of themselves, but I just don't love the act of waking up early. For those of you that do, I totally envy you (teach me your ways!). The truth is once I am awake, with a cup of coffee in hand (because duh), I am totally happy, and I actually do like having what feels like a jumpstart on my day. Although I love to sleep in, I think I might love the feeling of having a productive morning more. It sets you up for the day better than sleeping in and then rushing out the door to start the day!

I decided a couple weeks ago that it was time to really nail down waking up in the morning, which required a few changes to my normal routine and habits. So far these few changes have really made quite the difference! Whether or not I will every truly be a 'morning person' is up for debate, however I am most certainly happy that waking up is now a little bit less of a struggle, and I have a morning routine now that I love!

For anyone else out there that struggles like I do, I thought I would share some of the tips that helped me out. Give them a try and hopefully you will be on your way to becoming more of a morning person!


1. Do NOT hit the snooze button. I repeat, do not do it. This was the hardest thing to do, but honestly the most important for really changing my sleeping habits. Because I am so bad about hitting the snooze button, the only way to do this was to move my alarm (phone) across my bedroom. For someone who has slept with their phone right next to them every night for years this was honestly kind of a strugle. Sadly I know. However, this was extremely beneficial because it not only forced me to get up, but I also felt way less groggy which was a huge plus. Moving my phone across the room also leads to me my next point...

2. Like most people I'm sure, I use my phone as my alarm, and also like most people, once I get into bed to go to sleep, I waste a solid fifteen minutes at least scrolling through instagram, facebook, snapchat, etc... It's so bad and so unnecessary. Not only does it waste time that could have been spent falling asleep or actually sleeping, but it also makes it harder for you to fall asleep. The light from the screen is stimulating to your brain, which is exactly what you don't want when you are trying to unwind and fall asleep. I decided instead of wasting time on my phone, if I'm not quite ready to fall asleep or particularly tired, I will try and read a chapter from whatever book I am currently reading. I don't get much free time during my day for pleasure reading, so I have been taking advantage of this time. To be honest, I almost never even get through a chapter because something about reading in bed at night just puts me right to sleep!

3. Get into bed at night earlier. It's really that simple. The eariler you go to bed at night the easier it is to get up in the morning. Now this was a bit difficult for the night owl in me, but once I started doing it and it became more routine, it was much easier. By forcing myself to go to bed earlier, I also came to realize that there really was no reason for me to stay up as late as I was. It never hurts to get an extra hour or two of sleep, and it really does make a difference in how you feel the next day.

4.  Have something to look forward to. For me this is coffee, always coffee. I actually crave it and look forward to having it before I even go to sleep the night before (addicted). When I wake up in the morning and am really struggling to get out of bed, I just think of the cup of coffee I am about to have and that usually does the trick. Recently I have been making that cup of coffee and then taking it back into bed with me. This probably isn't for everyone, and if getting back into bed with your coffee will make you sleepy and likely to doze back to sleep then don't do it. However, I love it and it works for me. Depending on how much time I have, it is a nice half hour or hour that I spend waking up, drinking my coffee and enjoying the quiet moments of the morning before the day gets crazy. I will typically spend it reading my favorite blogs, checking emails, or even doing a bit of blogging myself. It has really made me appreciate mornings that much more!


Am I the only one who thinks cute pajamas make everything about bedtime and the mornings that much better!? 
Shop my favorites here... 

xo. G

Friday, April 22, 2016

Running Essentials

With the Boston Marathon having been this past Monday, and the particularly nice weather this week, I was feeling inspired to do a post on something I love very much.

Running.

I have been wanting to do a blog post on this topic for quite some time now, but I have struggled with how to approach it. There are a multitude of different topics I could/want to cover, but I think for now I will stick sharing some general running tips and essentials. I will save why I love running, how I got into running, and what I've learned from it for a later date!


The weather in New England this past week was beautiful (!!). There are many reasons why this makes me happy, one of them being that warm temps means saying goodbye to treadmill running. I think it is safe to say that outdoor running season is officially back! Fingers crossed I didn't just jinx it. I'm sure that many runners would agree with me when I say that the first outdoor run of the season is the best. It may not necessarily feel the best (hello hills), but it most certainly is good for the soul!

With the weather as nice as it is and only getting nicer, I thought I would share some tips and running essentials with you all. This is the ideal season to either get back into the groove or decide to give running a solid try as the weather isn't too hot yet.

My first and probably my biggest piece of advice is this: just do it. If you are new to running chances are it is going to suck at first. To be perfectly honest the first few runs I did this season were not the most enjoyable. The truth is that it will likely be a little bit painful - your legs muscles will burn, your lungs will probably hurt, you may or may not get a cramp, and there is potential for a blister or two. It is an adjustment period that is not unlike getting back into or starting up any other sport or exercise - you just have to do it. Dont let this discourage you, it will get better. I promise.

This leads me to my second piece of advice: stick with it! If you give up after the first run because of any of the above reasons, you are not giving yourself enough time to get past the initial adjustment and experience everything running has to offer. I don't want to give you the illusion that after that point running is a breeze, because it certainly is not. However, if you stick it out, it will get better. You will literally see your body get stronger and improve right in front of you - what could be better that that! In my personal experience the inital aches and pain are well worth it in the end.

As far as my essentials for running go, I don't have many, just because running really doesn't require that much! As far as attire goes, these Lululemon running crops are hands down the best. When it comes to running, you want pants that fit like a glove, don't slide down, and are the perfect material. These pants are all that and more. They are easily the best running pant I own, so much so that I will not wear anything else! I am not as picky about tops or sports bras as I am my pants, but I do recommend the Lululemon swiftly tech tops. I own both the long sleeve and short sleeve styles and have found they are great for wearing in wide range of temperatures. Nike has also become a staple in my workout drawer, which includes these shorts and these tank tops.

Speaking of Nike, that brings me to my next topic... running shoes. This is where you will find a lot of disagreement in the running community. There are some runners who swear by ASICS or Saucony. There are also runners who believe a more 'barefoot' running shoe is beneficial, where as some people still believe in the traditional thought that the more support the better. I have determined that there is no right or wrong answer here. It all depends on what works for you. What some runners prefer for running shoes, others might hate.

I have always been a fan of Nike running shoes, in particular a fan of their free runs. In the past people have told me that I needed a more supportive running shoe, so because of that and because so many runners swear by ASICS, I decided to buy a pair and see for myself. Long story short, after many runs, I decided that the ASICS weren't for me, and back to the Nike free runs I went. Three half marathons later, I still have no complaints and I am not planning on trying something new anytime soon.  Moral of the story, find a running shoe that you like and that works for you, and stick with it!

Long post, I know, I'm sorry! I will leave you with this. There will never be a run you regret running. Ever. Some may be hard, yes, but at the end of the day you will be happy you got out there and did it. I can only hope that I may have inspired some of you to get out there!

Happy running!

p.s. A killer running playlist doesn't hurt either! 

xo. G 

Monday, April 18, 2016

Graduation Dresses


Although I am not graduating this year, it is so hard to believe that graduation is only a few short weeks away! I think it is so hard for me to wrap my head around because it will mean I have officially been out of college for a year, which is so beyond crazy to me. It feels like it was just yesterday that I was walking across that stage officially becoming a Springfield College alumni, saying goodbye to that part of my life, and getting ready to begin the next phase. Truthfuly, it feels like it was just yesterday that I was moving into my dorm room as a freshman and yet almost five years have gone by. Where does the time go!? 

As I said in this post, I urge soon to be graduates to make the most of the last few weeks!! I can't even begin to describe how great my last few weeks of college were leading up to graduation. I was lucky to go to a school that not only put on a lot of senior events but that also had a senior week leading up to graduation. Although those left me with such wonderful memories, some of my fondest were just the times I spent doing absoultely nothing with friends. It is still those moments that I miss so very much. To all those graduating seniors, go out there and have the time of your life. It is in those moments that you will make special memories that you will always carry with you.

If you are anything like me, then you know that one of the few pluses that came along with graduating is shopping for a graduation dress! For as long as I can remember, I have associated graduation with white dresses. I wore a white dress when I graduated from high school, and of course I did the same last year when I graduated from college. Chances are good that I will wear one when I graduate from nursing school as well! There is just something I have always loved about the look of a white dress. It is such a classic style that you can wear time and time again, not just when you graduate. Not only that, but for the most part you shouldn't have to worry about your dress clashing with you cap and gown! 

I absoultely loved the dress I wore last year for graduation. It was such a winner. Between the shift silhouette and the eyelet fabric it really was perfection. I just dug it out of my closest, and it reminded me once more how much I love it. It will definitely be making some more appearances this summer! It is Banana Republic, and since it is from last season it is sadly no longer available. Check it out above for some inspiration!  

I have linked a bunch of beautiful white dresses from this season below! Happy shopping, and although a bit premature - happy graduation!! Give yourself a pat on the back and don't forget to celebrate a truly wonderful accomplishment! 

Shop here... 



And here is the final look, cap & gown included! 

xo. G

Friday, April 15, 2016

Friday Finds!

It's the best day of the week again! Whoo. Thank God it's Friday, I am so very happy to see you. The weather this weekend is supposed to be absolutely gorgeous, which I think is why I have been looking forward to this weekend a little more than usual. New England has not felt much like spring lately, so it's about time the weather warmed up a bit!

I hope that everyone has a lovely weekend, and takes advantage of the beautiful weather. I sure know I will be making every effort to get outside!

Enjoy!

photo

Best Ice Cream in Every State // Came across this and just had to share. I mean who doesn't love ice cream? I don't think I have ever met someone who doesn't. I sadly can't say I've been to any of these ice cream shops, but I will absolutely try to get to some of them if I am ever in the area! With the warm weather forcasted for this weekend, what would be better than taking a trip to get some ice cream that I'm sure won't dissapoint. Seventy-degress just calls for ice cream if you ask me. I know I will most definitely be making a trip to my local ice cream shop, Dari Serv, this weekend. It didn't make the list, but it is most certainly a favorite of mine!

Sweet Escapes // Ten simple ways to improve your days? Yes please. I don't think anyone will turn down a few tips to make your days a little bit brighter, relaxing, or more fun. Some are things I currently do daily or every so often to brighten my spirits, and others are absolutely going on my list of things to try asap. Once the weather stays consistently nice and the farmers markets get going again, I can promise you I will be there!

Agua Fresca Recipies // First the ice cream link and now this. Sorry guys! I just can't help it - I am always looking for new recipies to try and new places to check out! These first caught my eye because they were so pretty and to be honest I thought they were cocktail recipes (ha). Come to find out they're actually a mix of flowers, herbs, fruit, sugar, and water, which sounds so refreshing if you ask me! I am all about drinking water to stay hydrated, but it is also fun to switch it up every once in a while. These are perfect for that! I can already see these becoming a hit this summer when to temperatures rise, and they would also be perfect to make for entertaining!

xo. G

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Pretty in Florals

I don't know about you all, but when I think of a spring wardrobe essential, floral prints always come to mind. There is just something so feminine and pretty about floral prints in general, and wearing them during these months is so representative of the season!

The lovely thing about florals is that there are so many different designs and prints! There is something that everyone can love and incorporate into their own personal style. If you are looking for something fun and a bit bold you can easily find it in a floral. At the same time, if you want something a little bit more dainty and understated, but equally as pretty, you will still have luck with a floral print. Florals are a print that everyone can come to love!

I have rounded up some of my favorite floral prints that have been catching my eye lately! Check them out below!






























Shop here... 

xo. G

Monday, April 11, 2016

Scents for Spring!


Perfume is one of the few things that I almost never leave the house without having on (and mascara. always). To me, a spritz of perfume is the finishing touch to any outfit. Although no one can see it, it makes me feel feminine and put together no matter what I am wearing. Over the years I have found my favorites that I will always go back to and that have really become my signature scents. However, I am always on the lookout for new perfumes to add to my collection!

I not only love perfume because it looks pretty sitting on my dresser and makes me smell good, but it also has the beautiful ability to transport me back in time. There are certain perfumes that I wear that bring me right back to a certain points in my life or remind me of specific people. It's so crazy and wonderful that a scent can bring you back to the past, even if just for a moment.

I thought it would be fun to share with you all some of my favorite scents for spring! Some of which I  am currenlty rotating through wearing, and some of which are on my wish list. In the spring months I love a light floral fragrance which is perfect for the season and can also easily be transitioned to and worn in the summer. Right now I am super drawn to Tory Burch's orignial eau de parfum. It is such a beautiful feminine scent with notes of citrus and floral.  I just love love love it.

I have linked it and my other favorites below. Be sure to head over to your local Nordstrom fragrance department or Sephora to find the perfect spring scent for you!






Shop the scents here... 

xo. G

Monday, April 4, 2016

Too Faced Mascara


I was with some girlfriends over the weekend, and while on the topic of makeup, someone asked "If you could only use one makeup product for the rest of your life, what would it be?" The answer was unanimous. Mascara.

I like to think most people would agree with us. Mascara is a girl's best friend! Regardless of how I am doing my makeup, mascara is the one thing I always use.  Over the years, I have used a few different brands and discovered some favorites that I keep going back to when I run out. For the most part I stick to those tried and true favorites, however I recently decided to switch it up and try something new.

My friend uses Too Faced 'Better than Sex' mascara and highly recommended it, so for the sake of changing things up a bit, I bought it. I must admit, I love it! It does all the things I expect out of a mascara - it separates, volumizes, and lengthens my lashes without clumping or flaking off. I have a feeling this mascara is soon to be a new favorite and will become part of my makeup routine!

Below I have linked my three favorite and most frequently used mascaras. Be sure to check them out. I promise they won't disappoint!

Shop here... 


xo. G

Friday, April 1, 2016

Hello April!



Happy Friday and happy first day of APRIL! I have always loved when April rolls around because although spring has officially already started, I feel like April is the real start of spring. It’s finally starting to get nice outside, the trees are all starting to bud and the flowers are slowly but surely blooming (!!). The sundresses and sandals are for sure being brought back to life, and we are one month closer to summer. Yay! 

With the start of this month, I wanted to share some things that are on my radar for April and also some things that are catching my eye this month! 

Enjoy! 

First Monday in May // For those of you who may not know, The Met Gala is one of the most important events in the fashion world that is hosted to mark the opening of the Costume Institute's annual fashion exhibition. It is one of the most highly anticipated events and everyone who is anyone in the world of fashion, art, film, and music is in attendance. I am so very excited for this film to debut, as we will all get a behind-the-scenes look into a world that is so very different than our own. Anna Wintour might just be the most post powerful women in the fashion industry (she's amazing), and it will be beyond impressive to see what goes into pulling of as bash as important as this one. This will likely be the closest I will ever get to actually attending the Met Gala, and I will just have to be happy with that. 

Bittersweet Feelings // Attention all soon to be college graduates. If you read only one thing today (because lets face it at this point in time what's school?) please have it be this. I came across this again recently, but I still distinctly remember reading it at this time last year as I was heading into my final few weeks of college. It gave me all the feels then, and rereading it now still gives me goosebumps and makes me slightly emotional. I urge all of you soon to be college grads to make the absolute most of the next few weeks. They will sadly be over in the blink of an eye, but they also have the potential to be some of the absolute best. When I look back on my college years, I am lucky to say that they were all beyond amazing, but the last month or so of college was really the best. I will never forget the moments, the people, and the way I felt in those final weeks. Make the most of it because "you’ll not only miss the people you love but you’ll miss the person you are now at this time and this place, because you’ll never be this way ever again." 

You're Not Lost // And then there is this one, for all the twenty-somethings feeling lost and unsure in the post-grad world. Boy oh boy, one year really changes things up a bit doesn't it?  I just wrote this post about feeling a little bit lost and uncertain about the future, and this couldn't have been timed any more perfectly. Maxie does a hell of a good job reminding us that no matter what, we are never lost, but only finding our way. 

Overnight Oats // I am always on the look out for new breakfast options, so I was thrilled when I came across this. Although I can go for weeks eating the same thing for breakfast, I do like to switch it up a bit! I have made overnight oats in the past, but I like that this gives you a bunch of different recipes to try out. I made the strawberry-chocolate recipe and peanut butter-banana (fav), which were so good, and I am definitely going to be trying out the blueberry-almond oats! The best part (besides the taste) about overnight oats is how easy they are to make, and because you make them the night before, there is no excuse for not having something healthy to eat for breakfast. With summer quickly approaching, this is the perfect options for getting that bathing suit body! While we are on that subject,  I will be doing a post this month about getting in shape for the summer - be on the look out! 


xo. G