First day back working!


Just a random snapshot from behind our apartment. I can't wait until the ground is covered in snow.

Today was my first day at the job I got through a temp agency. It's temp to perm at a company I would love to work at, so I'm really excited, and really applying myself. The official job title is 'Licensing and Accessories Coordinator'. If I get it perm, I'll probably say more then!

I was sad to be away from Jack all day. When I got home, he and Scritchie both just wanted to be near me it was so sweet!

I think the next step I have to tackle is getting back into the swing of going to the work and the gym- I won't be able to go to my favorite class now, because it's during work hours. There is 6:30 Zumba tomorrow, or I may try to go just to do some weights. I can't let this change in my schedule mess me up too much.

Small Update Tuesday

Today has been super busy, with car getting and looking at animal shelters as we're looking into adopting another cat. I thought I would post two pictures of things that I have been super close to today- my new car, and my cat. :) Car posts should be dying down a bit now, and will mostly turn into I HAVE A NEW JOB posts.



Monday Night Quotes #1


For the past few weeks, on the back of my 'daily plan' paper, I will write down a quote and I thought I'd start sharing a few that I'd found throughout the week that really resonated with me. Pretty sure these are all fairly popular, but that's okay!
In three words, I can sum up everything I know about life: it goes on. - Robert Frost
 One thing Jack always says when I start to get worked up is that things will work out, to which I always respond 'whyyyyyyyyyy', and he will look me right in the eyes and say 'because it has to.' And it does! It has to work out, keep going, there is no pause. A second is a second is a second, no matter how we process it.

When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too. - Paulo Coelho
I love this one. It goes with my last post quite closely, to enjoy the fruits of my labor I have to actually, well, put in the labor.  If I want to bring out the best in something I have to give it my best first.

So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself - who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of live and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed? - Hunter S. Thompson
I used to convince myself to do things outside my comfort zone by telling myself 'There is a story here, and I want to tell it.' I find this holds true even now, and just thinking with that intention has led me in so many ways- I've gone skiing, gotten comfortable riding on a motorcycle, stayed up all night making superhero costumes out of found items with friends and doing impromptu photoshoots (true story), and more. Hopefully this will get me sky diving one day!

You are the universe, expressing itself as a human for a little while. - Eckhart Tolle
I dream about space a lot. I love learning more about our universe; how the stars work, what all these random balls of gas look like, are made up of, how they've gotten where they are and how we know they exist. It will always be a thorn in my side that I won't be able to travel into deep space on some exploratory journey and see something that has truly never been seen by another living being, but this quote reminds me of something I like to remind myself of. We're all made of stardust, and what can be found in the far reaches of our universe, known or not, exists right inside of me as well.

Maybe you had to leave in order to miss a place; maybe you had to travel to figure out how beloved your starting point was. - Jodi Picoult 
I've posted this one on here before, but with Thanksgiving having just passed and Christmas coming up it is always fresh in my mind.

Up to date Sunday #4

My new Subaru! I couldn't get a good picture of the car because of the time of day. :( It is a 2010 Subaru Legacy~


current song: Marina & the Diamonds - Primadonna

current thoughts: One of the things I've written down this week was about how if I wanted to become the best version of myself possible, it would take a ton of effort. No one gets anywhere without putting in effort- and I can't laze around looking for better things without working towards them. I make my own environment, and I'm the only person who can give myself the results I want. When I lost weight, it took a lot of effort, months of planning out every meal and counting every calorie. Last year, starting in June I think the only unplanned meals I ate were Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was effort and I got results I am proud of.

One of the things I've talked about on here before is how I get lethargic without a routine, and how I want to be more productive and I have been! But I think to be who I want to be in terms of personal happiness, social contentment, etc, I need to do more. Be proactive. Involve myself in projects that support me, and who I feel I am and involve myself with people who make my life better.

In my upcoming job, I hope to carry this with me. I remember at my last job, the best days were when I threw myself into my work completely, and was able to help others. This will always be true for me, and I just needed a bit of a reminder.

current plan: Go get my nails done, clean the apartment- with me starting work on Wednesday I will have less time at home to pick up everything! Better to get it in order now. I'm going to be doing some yoga at home later with the app I talked about last week. I did do a session of Jillian Michael's yoga meltdown which I really enjoyed a few days ago as well, but I don't think I've been able to focus on my own body as well. Plus, the svasana doesn't exist in yoga meltdown and it is my favorite part!

current quote:
Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice, It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.
- William Jennings Bryan 

this week's favorite things, 11/18/12 - 11/24/12


1) new pen from Mochi things 2) Marauder's Map crafty project thing 
3) sweet printable I found on GIS 4) Our snow from a while ago- I'm getting excited early!

We have two days of snow in the forecast! This will most likely change, but I am still excited. Putting this post together right now before I go to the gym for a 930 class- it's my first time going to this gym on the weekend so I am kind of nervous!

My favorite things this week:

diy x this handwritten poster project

fitness x these post thanksgiving workouts. I also couldn't stop myself from getting 2 of the blogilates tanks, the style is so cute!

fashion x this post on office party wear. I've seen a lot of crazy inappropriate things at holiday parties, and with all the casual fashion posts I like seeing the professional posts as well.

recipe x this protein baked apple oatmeal looks amaaaaaaazing.

phone x currently loving these phone background/lockscreen finds- I'm using the yellow bunnies and quality is not quantity print right now. :)

recipe x this vegan cranberry oatmeal bake also looks amaaaaaazing. I may have a thing for oatmeal!

I hope everyone had a good Black Friday, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Thanksgiving was wonderful!

Mine and Jack's place cards from dinner last night, I thought these were super cute and a great idea for organizing the 20+ dinner.
I skipped posting yesterday, but I just wanted to mention that I am extremely thankful to be where I am right now. I've moved so far from home, and the past few days have been really difficult but it's been okay. I am surrounded by wonderful people, my loving boyfriend, and the chance to go for exactly what I want in my life. I am thankful that I was able to make the choice to move, and have it go so easily.

I did go Black Friday shopping a little bit last night- I was at the Merrimack Premium Outlets at 1 AM! It was pretty fun, I've never done Black Friday shopping before. I felt like I was at a party- there was live music, lots of people and everyone seemed to be having fun. I've also been a fan of all the Black Friday Deals Posts I've seen today- this year I want to go more handmade/less store bought on gifts so these have led me to some great finds.

Today may go the car buying route, or that will go to this weekend. I have a lot of cleaning to do, and I need to recenter myself following the being up late/eating as much as possible/weird ennui in my life.

Job interview OOTD :)




-Cardigan/White House Black Market -Top/Forever21 -Pants/Target -Shoes/Madden Girl

Here are a few pictures of one of my job interview outfits- I did have another interview to go to this morning, which I think went well. I've been wanting to do a post about my job interview clothes for a while.

While I was a marketing assistant, I had to dress up every day so I have a semi-decent closet of professional wear at this point. I say semi, because I don't have a blazer that actually fits! I prefer the feel of cardigans anyways.

I think for job interviews, especially at the level (experienced, nonmanager) I am applying for, this is a really great outfit. I do feel the shirt may be a bit too shapeless/needed a little ironingohmygod, but I don't think it's a dealbreaker for the look. The cardigan does add a bit of casual to a look that may be too much with a blazer, but is still professional and could not be mistaken as casual.

I'm not sure how I feel about doing OOTD posts- my boyfriend took these as I don't have a tripod and I feel weird on camera! But in my search for appropriate job interview outfit styles I was almost hard pressed to find something that I felt comfortable with, so I hope this help someone!

Woooooo! New job!

I got a job!!! My interview yesterday went very well, and they got back to my recruiter saying I was far above the others in the running. I go in tomorrow to sign everything at the staffing agency. It is a temp to perm position, but they said in the interview they want to make it perm in the new year. I will be assisting two/three departments and an executive.

Now that I have a job, I need to get a car. Jack and I are sharing right now, but with me starting full time next Wednesday and him starting on December 3 at his new place it's become a priority. My dream baby right now is a used Subaru Legacy


It will be able to get me through the winter really well, and being a used car I won't be so terrified of any kind of danger.

I am super excited for this new opportunity, and taking a big step in buying my own car. :)

small update


I was so busy today! Well, for me. Compared to how my days have been. I went to the gym this morning, and had a phone screen and an in person interview. I think both went really well, but I assume most do.

So here is a picture of my male betta, Athena. He's awesome. I need to get a heater for his tank so he can truly flourish!

Drinking some angry orchard, watching Breaking Bad and catching up on blogs. Another interview tomorrow I need to get ready for!

Up to date sunday #3


Yesterday we went and took down a tree on a friends property, it was pretty neat! It was super loud, the ground shook, and the tree broke apart when it landed. I tried to get video but ran out of space on my phone a few seconds before it came down. Then Jack and I went to Wal-Mart and bought Christmas Candy. :)

current song: Genesis, by Grimes. 

current thoughts: Last night I realized I haven't been reading as much lately. By lately I mean at all. Growing up I got a new book every week, and I'm really sad I lost that sometimes. I found a few books I want to start on today. First I need to finish The Fault in our Stars by John Green, and then I think I'll move on to The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Steven Chobsky because I missed the boat on that one. My favorite genres are young adult and fantasy novels. And possibly new adult now that it's a thing.

current plan: Get out of bed! Charge my kindle, drink some green tea, get caught up on tv and start researching the companies I will be interviewing for.

current quote:
The problem, often not discovered until late in life, is that when you look for things like love, meaning, motivation, it implies they are sitting behind a tree or under a rock. The most successful people recognize, that in life they create their own love, they manufacture their own meaning, they generate their own motivation.
For me, I am driven by two main philosophies, know more today about the world than I knew yesterday. And along the way, lessen the suffering of others. You'd be surprised how far that gets you.
 -Neil deGrasse Tyson in an AMA on reddit.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend and a great saturday!

this weeks favorite things, 11/11 - 11/17/12

Played Battle of the Sexes with some friends last weekend, it was fun!
But not one of my favorite things this week! Those are linked below. :)

recipe x mashed sweet potatoes with sauted apples from Eat Yourself Skinny! I'm in love with this recipe! I love apples, and I love me some sweet potato. Perfect combination!

recipe x whoever thought of putting fruit in scrambled eggs? Skinny Confidential did, and I want some! Hopefully this will help to get me eating eggs more.

soul x this post about crappy thoughts on My Shine Project. It's wonderful to empathize on feelings and have the comforting feeling of if someone knows what I am feeling, and has gotten out of it, so can I.

recipe x what is up with food and me this week? anyways, this recipe for a high-protein pumpkin bread from The Iron You looks fantastic and I want to try it soon! Baking with protein powder seems like an adventure.

diy x a DIY project for cats? Cocorrina posted this earlier in the week. I am constantly looking to give my cat amusement after amusement, so I will be making one of these soon to try and entice him.

diy x love this eye mask tutorial from The Wonder Forest. Super chic and the examples she posted use my current favorite (adorable flowers). I can't wait to have a sewing machine again!

fitness x love workouts geared towards small spaces!

links x this link post on The Wonder Forest is also filled with a bunch of awesome things. I love Dana's finds! I will be making the felt trees this weekend hopefully.

yoga x Last night I tried out a yoga app for the first time, Pocket Yoga! I did the Desert practice, on beginner for 30 minutes and I really enjoyed it. It was easy enough that I could do all the poses, but I did have to push myself through the vinyasas. I love the set up as well; there are 3 different practices, and 2 Sun Salutations. Both have beginning, intermediate and advanced levels, and the practices have 30, 45 and 60 minute sections. The sun salutations go up to 30 repetitions. Even using my iPhone it was easy to follow and glance at if I needed to see exactly what was going on. I think I'll try it on my iPad next, the bigger pictures may help. Glad to know I'll be able to use this when I travel.

I hope everyone had a great week and is starting off their weekend on the right foot. :)

Liebster Award!



ReneĆ© over on Antiquarian Miss nominated me for the Liebster! :) This looks like a really great networking technique for smaller blogs. The rules are:

  1. Each person tagged must post 11 things about themselves
  2. They must also answer the 11 questions the tagger has set for them
  3. They must create 11 more questions to ask bloggers they have decided to tag
  4. They must then choose 11 special bloggers to tag & award with the Liebster award with less than 200 followers
  5. These lucky bloggers must be told in a comment on their blog 
So.... 11 things about me!
  1. I've always lived within 45 minutes of Disneyland.... until now!
  2. My favorite movie is Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  3. I have been dying my hair red since I was 16 or so... no idea what my true natural hair color is!
  4. I used to be obsessed with japanese and korean pop music. 
  5. I lost about 30 pounds last year, but have gained a few back.
  6. I write and keep notes around about EVERYTHING, I am addicted to lists.
  7. I love eating new kinds of food. If it smells not-bad, I will eat it just to try it out. 
  8. I have a small makeup addiction- my makeup drawer (which takes up half my desk) is almost full! My favorite brands are Urban Decay and NARS.
  9. I have made a 101 things in 1001 days list, and I think the 100 books task is the one I am most looking forward to.
  10. Jack and I are looking to adopt a female 1 year old cat, and name her Petra after Petra Arkanian from the Ender's Game series.
  11. I am addicted to movie adaptations of books! I do think most books should be presented as mini-series though. Especially Harry Potter.
11 questions from ReneƩ:
  1. What is your favorite holiday?
    1. Probably.... Christmas. It's when the whole family gets together and it's an amazing organized meal, and a lot of members put aside personal issues to have a wonderful day. This will be the first christmas I am away from home, and it gets to me sometimes!
  2. Cats or dogs?
    1. Aaaaah, this is so hard! I miss my dog, Honey, a lot but I have a wonderful cat. Jack and I are planning on adopting another cat soon as well. I love both!
  3. What is the best thing that has happened to you because you own a blog?
    1. I have been more creative, and done more things for myself. Instead of getting into a slump because of the 'between jobs' aspect of my life, I've been able to work on personal improvements and projects to enrich my environment while I search for a fulfilling job.
  4. Coffee or Tea?
    1. I love boooth. I've been on a tea kick lately, but I have some coffee in the pantry that is waiting for me! 
  5. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
    1. Physically, my smile! Emotionally, my optimism. It's been a bit neglected lately, but I always try to look on the bright side of things or at least remind myself there is a bright side.
  6. What is your favorite candy?
    1. DOTS. Always DOTS. Gelatin based candies are the best, and what would mess me up if I chose to go vegetarian
  7. What are your thoughts on IKEA?
    1. I love love Ikea. Furniture that's cheap and pretty sturdy? Awesome! At my new place the nearest Ikea is like, 3 hours away apparently so I've started investing in 'real' furniture, which has been interesting. I miss all my swedish names!
  8. What is your dream job?
    1. Dream job is something where I get to work with a team, and talk to other people a lot. I need to find the right passion to apply this to!
  9. Pepsi or Coke? Or neither?
    1. Coke Zero, all day every day! I am addicted, and I have Jack drinking it too now. He usually asks for it first at restaurants, haha.
  10. What is your favorite superhero?
    1. Invincible! I love that he had to deal with normal high school stuff while uncovering all the secrets about his life. The comic Invincible is by Rob Kirkman, who also writes the Walking Dead.
  11. If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it?
    1. Pay off my debt, buy a car, buy a house and save the rest. After shopping a bit for things for the new house. 
Hm, this is always hard for me! 11 questions for those whom I tag:
  1. Which sounds better, Disneyland, or Disney World?
  2. If you had to host a chick flick night, what movie would you choose?
  3. You have to hike a mountain, which one do you choose?
  4. Green, black, white, or what other kind of tea do you like the most?
  5. You get to repaint your bedroom, which color would you like?
  6. What is your dream vacation?
  7. If you could have a super power, what would you want?
  8. Favorite book from classic literature?
  9. If you went to Hogwarts, what would your favorite class be?
  10. You get a gift card for the store of your choice, which store is it? Major mall or handmade shop?
  11. Would you rather cruise in the Caribbean or vacation in the snow?
I don't actually have 11 bloggers to choose! I am still growing what I read a lot, and I think a lot of people will have been tagged already. 
  1. SimplyCallMeSylvia
  2. Brittany's Notebook
  3. Living Bittersweetly
  4. I think I need to explore more! I will link back to this post as times goes on, to nominate other bloggers I find and feel a connection to. :)
So, I've been tagged for this a few more times! Here are some additions:
  1. If you could be a character on any TV show, which show/character would it be? 
    1. Battle Star Galactica! 
  2. What is your favorite book?
    1. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. This does change a lot though!
  3. If you could pick which decade you were born in, what would it be?
    1. I love when I was born, 1989. :)
  4. What is your favorite part about being a blogger?
    1. Feeling more comfortable with writing- I feel there is a lot more direction in my life now that I blog.
  5. If you could learn how to do or make anything what would you pick?
    1. Play the piano! 
  6. What was your favorite TV show as a child?
    1. Sailor Moon.
  7. What is your favorite dessert?
    1. Apple pie with ice cream.
  8. What, in your opinion, is the cutest baby animal (pictures are always good)?
    1. Puppies!
  9. What accomplishment of yours are you the most proud of?
    1. Moving to NH on my own.
  10. What was the last movie you saw in theaters?
    1. Looper.
  11. If you could meet anyone who would it be?
    1. Real? Not sure, to be honest. Fictional? Remus Lupin. :)

Review, Masa Japanese Restaurant in Manchester, NH

Tuesday night Jack and I went on a double date to the restaurant I have most wanted to try since I moved here- Masa Japanese Hibachi! I have had hibachi/teppanyaki before and love the meat, the rice, and the show. I also knew they had a sushi bar and wanted to get my sashimi on.

Pictures originally from the restaurants website, Masa Japanese Hibachi. I forgot my camera! :(
The first thing I noticed about this place, which you can see from the pictures, is that it is gorgeous. In an area of family restaurants Masa really stands out to me for it's adult oriented and well, sexy decor. While some parts do feel a bit kitschy, the lighting underneath the bars at the hibachi tables and tiled everything really stands out. Even Masa's hours are more adult oriented- on a Tuesday night we were there until 10:30 with no rush from the staff, and on weekends they are open until 11:30.

When we walked in we were sat down at a Hibachi table, but they also have booths and a sushi bar. I ordered salmon sashimi, a bottle of Kirin Ichiban beer and steak for my meat. Everyone else in our party ended up ordering the filet and chicken meats. (You can see the full menu here, prices are between $15 - $45 for most entrees.) First the normal waitress brings out a salad which was delicious, and used some kind of house sauce as dressing. She also brought out a clear broth which the other girl with us enjoyed, but I didn't enjoy it at all. She also started to get the griddle hot.

I didn't catch the name of our chef for the night, but he was pretty young and energetic! We were the worst audience ever, since everyone was a little on the tired side and the birthday party sharing our table was headed by the most apathetic 20-year old ever. Poor guy, I still feel bad! He worked with what he had though. He did have tricks up his sleeve- juggling eggs on the cooking apparatus, making the chicken do the worm, accidentally spilling on one of the girls with a trick sauce bottle, throwing broccoli off the spatula into our mouths (I failed at this, miserably.), and squirting sake into the mouths of those who were up for it. I was very entertained, and so was everyone else despite the lack of energy.

First he prepared our fried rice, which was amazing. The fried rice was perfect. I would eat the fried rice for dinner for a week if I could. Next were vegetables, also insanely good! And finally the meat. My steak was medium-rare and I really loved it, the flavor was really great and it was actually medium rare! The filets were fantastic as well, and I probably should've just ordered filet but I am crazy. I did not try the chicken, but from all accounts it was awesome as well. I also got green tea fried ice cream as a desert and it was fantastic. I love fried ice cream, fried cheesecake, all fried deserts. I ate it all by myself! So proud.

I am going to go back to Masa, the only real negative for me throughout the night was the clear broth. I think next time I will try to make it more of an event oriented night, so that we can be more lively with the chef and make their night easier! I am sure there are better places in Boston, but with Masa only being a 5 minute drive from my apartment I think it will be my favorite for quite a long time.

MASA: Sushi & Hibachi Grill on Urbanspoon

I'm beginning a project today!

I've always admired people who have tons of photos surrounding them, and been able to have a creative outlet with their memories. This may be my first step into scrapbooking! I've been journaling lately- keeping pads of paper around I can write my thoughts on, which I later tape into a notebook where I can write more than a few lines if I need it.

But back to photos! I saw this post over on Here's Lookin At Me Kid (who has since moved to Making Nice in the Midwest, yay for growth!) which gave me instant inspiration. What's going on in that most is a lot more picturesque than what I came up with. On a recent trip to Michaels I picked up a cheap 4"x6" photo album, and some scrapbooking paper I really liked. I already had some photo paper from when I got a printer.

Steps!

  1. Take picture, edit picture, print picture
  2. Put picture in photo album
  3. Write caption on pretty paper, or a sticker, or other pretty things.
  4. Put caption on top of picture inside the sleeve!
Super easy, perfect for me. I really liked how simple but put together this little project looks, when I see most DIY or journal ideas the first thing I think to myself is 'the first time I try this it will be a huge mess', which just means I need practice! but this little thing turned out wonderful the first try.

Since moving I've been learning to treasure my memories more and more, and how important it is to record them. I think I'll be going back through pictures I took while I was home and making albums out of those like this as well. Here's what I have so far:

$2.50 at Michaels! Going to look on Etsy for better albums.

I've posted pictures from this ride before, in this post.

Picture was taken near Angle Pond, there are more photos here.

Another grab from this post.

I am really liking a lot of the journaling activities and ideas I'm seeing, and think I may be getting into it a bit more!

I'm picking up all these hobbies while I am without work! Hopefully I'll be able to keep everything up once I star working again. :)

Finding my space at home

Photo from SheKnows.Com
One of the challenges I've had moving into a small apartment is the lack of space for fitness. Well, this really isn't super accurate as my room back home was super tiny. One of my big, slow-going, personal projects has been making myself a peaceful space where I can focus on my favorite at home workout, yoga.

I use the living room as my practice space- we have a TV where I can watch youtube videos, or download programs to our media center. I am also able to play pandora through the TV, so I can throw on their Yoga station to help me get in the mood. I also have different surfaces around me- I don't have blocks, so it's nice to have a low table right next to me if I need to steady myself.

This room has probably been my biggest project. Keeping it clean and free of distractions is a constant effort. Before I practice I always go through with a plastic bag and pick up anything I can, and use the 30-second rule: If I can do something in less than 30 seconds, I need to get it done! I'll also break out the dust buster in areas around where I put my yoga mat. I light a few lightly-scented candles as well, to calm my thoughts. (I think it works? I really like smelling like a softer version of the Yankee Candle store at least.) I just need to push the coffee table against the couch in order to have enough space to practice.

Currently I use the YogaAccessories Super Thick Yoga Mat which may have been a bit overzealous of me in thickness, because I have carpet. I imagine I'll be loving it when I eventually take the mat with me to a class at the gym. I love how long it is- because we do have carpet and I practice in a high traffic area I don't want to be touching the carpet with my hands, or have my hair flop around. Because the mat is 74" long I am super comfortable stretching out wall-to-wall on it. A problem I've had with previous mats was also solved here - no slippage! A bit TMI, but I get really sweaty hands and feet while I do yoga. With my last GAIAM mat I couldn't even stay in down dog comfortably, but with this mat I feel a lot more comfortable with myself. I also purchased the Aurorae Yoga Slip Free Rosin Bag, but I'm not sure if this has actually helped or just made me a little messy.

My Checklist for creating my ideal yoga space:

  1. Pick up all trash, dishes, clean up any dust in the area.
  2. Put on music, like the pandora yoga station.
  3. Push that coffee table over
  4. Light some candles!
  5. Dodge the cat
  6. Get flexible and focused!
  7. After my practice, I will wipe down my yoga mat. I really need to look into a more serious cleaning solution though. I've seen wipes, and make-at-home-sprays, which I think I will go in the direction of. 
Does anyone have tips for yoga in a small space? I love finding new ways to change things up and improve!

I ❤❤ Autumn Tag


I've seen this around a few places and have always wanted to do a tag post/video, so here we go!

1. It's finally Autumn; what are you most looking forward to this season?
The Foliage already passed! So right now I'm most looking forward to Thanksgiving with my new family circle here in New Hampshire. :) 

2. What Autumn item in your closet are you most excited to pull out?
My fur lined boots! Sometimes when we go out a night it's already reached 30F or below, so they're a huge help. 

3. Since Halloween is the first holiday to celebrate, we all get treated with a horror film marathon all month long...What is your favourite scary film to watch?
Well, Halloween for me was spent curled up in bed watching Burn Notice! But my favorite scary movie is probably the original Shutter. 

4. What is your favourite Autumn treat?
Pumpkin everything! I am a huge fan of pumpkin candles, pie, cookies, muffins, cold drinks, warm drinks, ice cream, etc. And a new addition to this may be the fall quesadilla at the local T-Bones restaurant which had apples, and walnuts in it. Who would've thought?

5. Now that summer is finally over, What will you miss about it?
I think what I'll miss most is spending time with my mom in our backyard. We all put a lot of work into it and it was the perfect relaxation area. You can see some snapshots in a recent post

6. What make-up/beauty products do you love for Autumn?
I haven't changed my make up! I only really got into it this year, so I'm still learning a lot. I have noticed my skin gets drier a lot faster, so I've been upping my lotion use. 

7. What have you recently bought in preparation for the up and coming season?
A winter coat! I posted about some of my other winter readiness items in a recent post. I made sure my jacket was waterproof, and will probably pick up some leather waterproofing sprays for my boots. Which said they were waterproof. My toes still got wet!!

8. Have you ever been trick'or'treating?
When I was younger it was a high light for me! I was always a princess or some zany thing I came up with. I can't even imagine how much candy I ate in one night! There is no trick or treating in our area really, so I just bought the big bags to eat myself this year. 

9. Name the first 5 things that come to your head when you think of Autumn.
Foliage, apples, wind, warm colors, pumpkin.

10. What is your favourite season and why?
Probably spring - the weather finally picks up and everything is warm and lively again. :)

Met with a recruiter earlier at a staffing agency, she seemed optimistic about how easy it would be to place me and get a good fit with me. I just need to complete some software assessments and hopefully that will be off! Have a phone screening tomorrow which I'm excited about, even if it is retail. It's good retail! 

Jack is at his second job interview, we're hoping that goes well. We got invited to a friends for dinner afterwards which will be awesome. I hope everyone is having a fantastic monday, at home or at work! :)

up to date sunday #2

current picture:
Trees behind our apartment. 

current song: Taylor Swift - I Knew You Were Trouble. Still don't like Red as much as Speak Now, but love this song.

current workout: I am obsessed with Les Mills Body Combat. At my friday class, some high school girls showed up and stayed in the back half doing the moves. My brain apparently decided there was a competition happening? I worked harder in that class than ever before, it was super satisfying. Still keeping up with my yoga/gen exercise so I'm pretty happy.

current feelings: This was the first week I was really hit by homesickness. I miss my mom a lot- she is my best friend, and we would always do things together. Jack is always motivating me to be and do as much as I can, but having my mom with me for the past few months is probably going to be something I cherish and remember forever. Even if I get all teary remembering us in my room with the dog and the last day I was home, or my parents dropping me off at the airport (this gets me a bit more than teary, tbh.) I found a quote from Jodi Picoult earlier which did not help my emotional roller coaster-
“Maybe you had to leave in order to really miss a place; maybe you had to travel to figure out how beloved your starting point was.” 

current plan: I have 2 interviews for next week! I am also going to work on getting the apartment more ordered and structured, and try to work on my photography.  And journaling, I did a bit of journaling this week and really enjoyed it. Hopefully I keep it up, I found it very therapeutic.


❤stephanie

this week's favorite things

The backyard at my old house/parents house. It is gorgeous.

As the holidays get closer I'm starting to miss home more and more. How did this reach a head point yesterday? Laundry machines. The laundry machines in our building are terrible! And expensive. :( Either way, I'm trying to figure out how to healthily deal with my home sickness. Yesterday, I was extremely productive, but possibly a bit too neat-freaky. (I washed coins because they'd been sitting out for ~4 years! Ew!) I hope to have more small projects for myself in the future, which I'm able to show off a bit more!

Here are some of my favorite things I have found this week:

clothes x the gingerbread scarf from this ootd pair

food x these autumn salads. I really need to get back into the habit of making salads!

hair x this french braid into a ponytail do. just need to get capable of french braiding!

yoga x these pigeon pose tips. A lot of my night practices focus on pigeon pose, I'm trying to open my hips up a lot. I want to be able to do the splits by my birthday next year!

yoga x these poses for a better nights rest. i've been having some issues sleeping soundly, so i am happy to try out these easy poses at night.

decor x this lovely, feminine desk snapshot. i am constantly redoing my set up and trying to find new decorations and this photo is the dream. 

DIY x this studding tutorial is great, and not intimidating at all! might try this on a pair of flats.

food x this recipe for low calorie sausage, sage, and apple stuffing. NEED I SAY MORE?

feature x this interview with hair guru Chris Dylan. I've been needing some tips, and I think I've found a lot of goo info here.

food x this recipe for the Texas Roadhouse free bread. Which is the best bread I've ever tasted.

I am looking forward to going out for some drinks with friends tonight! I hope everyone is having a great Saturday so far!


stephanie
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the first little bits of winter

The beginning of winter is still a month and a half away, but I think I see it creeping in every day. A few people I've spoken to are surprised that we haven't seen any snow yet (last Halloween there was a nor'easter) but it looks like we may be getting some tonight! Barely anything according to the weather channel, but it's enough to have me excited. The average for New Hampshire in November is 1.9 inches, and the month is only beginning.

Over the past few weeks I've been working to get myself prepared for the cold & snow. Some of the essentials I've chosen are: boots, a jacket, good tea and cider, and some warm winter recipes.

1) Columbia Bugaboo Interchangable Jacket. I don't think this is the exact one I picked up at TJ Maxx last week, but it's close. I got the jacket for $80, and it originally retailed for $230, so I am pretty proud of myself. :) Jack and I ended up at the Merrimack Premium Outlets yesterday, and they have Columbia  outlet but they did not beat the price I got at TJ Maxx. :)

2) The Teva Tonalea boot. I found these at a discount shoe place, and so far have been super happy with them! They keep my feet very warm, and are super fashionable. I plan on spraying them with extra waterproof soon, as I've seen some mixed reviews on if they're actually waterproof or not.

3) Hot apple cider yesssss. I have seen a bunch of recipes for hot apple cider (some with rum!) that I want to try, as well as a plain ol' Starbucks Carmel Apple Spice. I'm pretty sure all of these will get me nostalgic for the coffee shop on Main St. at Disneyland.

4) I haven't gotten into the hot chocolate yet, just tea. I found this Genmaicha at the grocery store the other day and am in love with. The toasted brown rice makes it a bit more earthy so I still feel a bit of autumn.

5) This Winter Spice Cookie recipe looks delicious! I am normally attracted to everything with spice in the name or description, so I am going to be all over this once Jack and I get around to making it! Right now we have a long list of recipes we both want to try.

My first winter will probably be a little tough! But if I can stay warm and have delicious things I think I'll be okay. :)

stephanie
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Voting in a swing state, my experience

Obama in Nashua, photo from The Dartmouth

Presidential elections in CA are... kind of boring. It's a blue state. It will always be a blue state. Presidential candidates don't even visit outside of fundraisers. Every year I would go with my dad to our local polling place with our sample ballots, show my ID, get my punch card and be in and out of the booth in less than 2 minutes to get my sticker.

Presidential elections in NH are.... totally different. Obama has made multiple appearances in the past month, as NH qualifies as a swing state on some scales. I didn't get the chance to see him speak, but I've seen pictures from friends that look great!

I had to register to vote at the polls today, which was an extremely easy process. I initially went into a separate room, which also functioned as a line spillover room, and filled out a voter registration form. I presented the form and my NH ID to the official, who verified everything and gave me a slip showing that I had registered. I took the slip and got in the normal line to get our names checked off/filled in that we had come to vote, and I was written in to the back of the book. The volunteer gave me a poker chip, where I got in another line, and gave the chip to another volunteer to receive my ballot.

The ballot was like a scantron- we used pens to bubble in, which is a bit different from the ink punch I am used to. I filled out my bubbles, and got in another line to insert my ballot into the recording machine. After that, I was picked to fill out an exit poll, then I was on my merry way to Starbucks.

I had never seen so many signs outside the polling center- even an anti-choice sign showing a picture of a premature, stillborn baby masqueraded as a partial birth abortion. I hate when images like that are just laid out for people to see- there were a lot of children there who aren't even going to see torture porn movies for at least 8 more years.

In other parts of my day, I think the job interview went really well! Hopefully I will hear back Friday or next week. Right now I need to get out of bed and put the apartment in order before it tornadoes into a mess!

Current song: Silversun Pickups - Lazy Eye

Neil deGrasse Tyson

is amazing. Is so, so amazing. Jack and I like to marathon his specials every so often and get excited, yet bitter that we don't get to live in space! Which really has nothing to do with this post.
DC is doing this awesome issue, which i found out about through iO9 where Neil deGrasse Tyson helps Superman with some astrophysics because while Superman is an alien superhero, Tyson is like a space God with an awesome Dumbledore vest.


I haven't really been to a comic book store since I stopped working at one, but I may stop by my lcs to pick up Action Comics #14. You can find out more on the star Tyson chose Krypton to be orbiting here, at the Discover Magazine blog. 

If you like space, and used to love Bill Nye or any kind of science program, you should head over to Netflix and watch some Nova scienceNOW. It's a great show, lots of complicated subjects where people do not seem to be talking to the lowest common denominator. Check it out. :)

Also, GO VOTE!

Listless

Scritchie a few days ago, being curious. 

I've been strangely absent today- Jack says I've been listless.

One of the places I applied for this morning called me back! I have an interview tomorrow, and hopefully it goes well. Waiting to hear back from the interview I did last monday still, but they did close down about for Sandy an hour after my interview so I imagine things are still somewhat hectic.

After my interview Jack and I are going to go get him an outfit for his in-person interview on Wednesday. He had a phone interview today which went very well. (Jack is already employed, but has been looking for a better opportunity.)

Some things that have kept me motivated:

  1. my schedule! I have blogged about this before, and now that I'm being better about it my days are laid out pretty well. I have noticed an improvement in my diet, exercise routine, and ability to get shit done!
  2. I am already seeing positives now that I am back on the workout wagon. I think I'm overly bloated though, so tomorrow I'm going to try this lemon diuretic which I saw over on Skinny Confidential. I didn't make it to Body Step today, like I wanted to (my calves are super tight, I can't even touch my toes!) but hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to make it to Body Combat, or I'll do some arm/chest exercises. 
  3. Pop music! I've really been loving Robyn, mainly her album Body Talk. Time Machine & Be Mine = Love forever~~.

Tomorrow I will have a lot more direction to my day, so tonight I'm going to spoil myself with my favorite tea and get lots of beauty sleep.


❤stephanie

up to date sunday #1

current picture:
Start of our fire last night

current workout: Totally obsessed with Back on Pointe's Dancer Leg's routine

current feeling: Icky! I didn't workout yesterday, so I doubled up just now and oh lawd. So sweaty. Heading to the shower right after I hit publish. I'm doing Back on Pointe's November challenge, and today I did Dancer's Leg Workout, One Room HIIT, FitFabCities Total Core Toner (hate the word tone!!), and the Fat Blaster. Really glad we have thick walls in our apartment building, I was blasting Pandora's Pop/Hip Hop Fitness station the whole time. Going to do Les Mills BodyStep for the first time tomorrow. I've been getting more interested in step classes, and I generally love everything Les Mills so I'm really excited. 

current plan: hit up the grocery store, do some clean-up, do my schedules for the week.

I hope everyone had a great weekend!!

❤stephanie

~*~*~*La Caretta Mexican Restaurant*~*~*~

For my one month in New Hampshire anniversary, I went to La Carreta Mexican Restaurant with a few friends And we had margaritas. Lots of margaritas.

Mango Margarita as big as my head! (not pictured- my previous margarita)

I was really happy with their food. We got the normal chips and house salsa fare- the salsa was not my favorite but still pretty good. I got my normal staple, beef chimichangas. I did not take a picture of my food. :( I was a little let down by their portion sizes, and the lack of rice. My actual chimichangas though? DELICIOUS. Jack ordered a burrito with just chicken, beef and cheese it was so puny on his plate! Also, the plates here? When they say hot, they mean HOT. First time in my life that I got burned after they told me not to touch it. Yelp reviews agree!

The staff was fantastic, drinks were deliciously strong- I will be going back. 
I think I want to rate mexican restaurants on a scale of 5 Super-Mex, the best mexican restaurant. I will give La Caretta 3.5 Super-Mex. A good score- the food was authentic, but as I said before I was surprised by the portion size. 

The next place I've been told to check out for mexican food is in Woburn, I think Ixtapa Mexican Restaurant?

Apartment Decoration, geek posters

As Jack is a true, true bachelor he never actually had wall art beyond a Budwesier Dart Board. Which is in our living room right now with nothing else. Until I moved I had a room plastered with posters, so it's been different for me having blank walls. But there are pluses! You get to start over.

I saw a sale over on Fab.Com for awesome geek-genre posters by etsy seller Harshness who designs and prints archival quality posters in various sizes. He is running a B1G1 right now if you like his Facebook page which actually makes this deal better than purchasing through Fab, and you get a wider selection.


Jack is a huge Star Wars fan (I am not a huge fan, but I am not totally disinterested) and we both love the design of these posters, so we got the set of all 6, 11"x17" which we'll be framing as soon as they get in and putting over our TV.

I've been going through etsy a lot trying to figure out what I want on my walls, and you can see some more awesome posters I've found if you click the read more link.


BackOnPointe November Workout Calendar!

About a year ago I grew unhappy with my body, and self-medicated with ice cream. It took me a few weeks to stop that behavior and realize that I couldn't lose weight just by deciding to- I had to put a lot more effort in. Over the course of about... a year, I lost around 30 pounds total (from my high weight to my low weight), and about 6 months ago I joined a gym. The gym is my faaaaavorite.

 I was always the kid in PE who was miserable, walked every mile, hated sports, disliked sweating so it was a real shocker for me that I love the gym so much. I had to leave my gym and all my favorite instructors and gym buddies (love you mom!) when I moved, and it took me a few weeks to join up again. I am able to afford a gym pass due to savings and deciding that it was an investment that I would need to make for my own happiness, because group excercise classes are probably the #1 thing in my fitness regimine. So, I was going to the gym, doing my bodypump, and body combat- then Hurricane Sandy came!

While I never lost power, the roads are blocked every which way and I had to miss a few classes because I didn't want to drive 30 miles and get lost to get to my gym which is 5 miles away.

I was looking at the fitness section on Pinterest (follow me here!) when I kept seeing a bunch of workout routines from the tumblr BackOnPointe! I'm glad I found this at the end of the month when her workout calendar was right at the top of her page, because this has reenergized me!
This is the calendar that I will be using- there are also calendar's for students, beginners, and standard.
On the BoP: November post, she also links to the workouts that she's created which you can select from. For Saturday, I'll probably be doing Dancer's Legs Workout and One Room HIIT. Hopefully today and Friday I'll be able to make it to BodyCombat and BodyPump. I will also be doing some yoga everyday- last night I did the poses in this Yoga For the Splits post on FitnessLoveAffair Tumblr, which I'll probably be sticking to for a while.

I plan on using this calendar as a supplement to my gym going- I have gained weight, and let my diet go a bit out of control so I hope by giving myself a better schedule things will get easier.

How do you stay on track every week? What keeps you motivated?