Mom Mantras to Obey for Better Skin

Hello everyone!

So my skin is so finicky and unpredictable, and certain times of year make it worse. However, when I get into a routine and I make steps to take the best care of my skin, that is when my skin does much better! And, in writing this post, I realized that all of these are basic things that my mom would preach to me as a child. Momma was right! These may seem obvious and mundane, but once I started doing them every day at the beginning of the summer, I saw a definite difference in my skin!

Drink your water.

This is probably one of the first things out of everyone’s mouth when they’re talking about better skin. Roll your eyes if you will, but I can definitely testify that drinking much more water helped my skin tremendously! I like to keep my water bottle with me all the time, so that I have it there to sip on so that I don’t forget. Also, if you feel super thirsty all of a sudden, chug your water! My mom always told me that’s your body’s way of telling you that it needs that refreshment. So, don’t feed it Coke or sugary drinks when you feel this way, either. That’ll just make you feel even worse.

Wash your face.


Another no-brainer, but this is probably the most crucial habit to get into if you want to take good care of your skin. If you can get to the point where you wash your face every night with the same steps, then you’ll form the habit and it’ll be harder to forget. Also, two bonus “mom mantras” that go along with this: ALWAYS moisturize and NEVER sleep in your makeup!

Take Your Vitamins.


I started taking these vitamins from Nature’s Bounty, and after about a month I started feeling and noticing a difference, in both my skin and my hair! I like these as well because since they’re gummies and they taste good, I remember to take them. That was a trick my mom would use with me when I was little… I never forgot to take those Flintstones vitamins because I liked them so much!

Use Your Sunscreen.

Sunscreen is always, always, always a must. But when it comes to my face, sunscreen can either break me out or dry me out, so it can be hard to keep myself protected. So I think that, for your face, it’s important to find a sunscreen that works well for you. I started using this Neutrogina sunscreen and it really works well for me! Also, even if you’re not going out on the beach, it’s good to still use SPF, so I also like this moisturizer, and I use it after I wash my face in the morning. Also, don’t forget about the lips as well! This Pacifica chapstick is pretty good… It’s not my absolute favorite, but I really like how it is tinted.

I hope you guys enjoyed this mom mantra post… Let me know if you liked it and maybe I could make it into a series! Because there are lots of life lessons my mom drilled into my head that I would love to share as well 🙂




What’s In My Travel Bag?

Hello everyone!

It’s been about a week since I’ve posted! I decided to take an unplanned break from blogging after I got home from Stone Harbor. Since I was traveling yet again this past weekend to Grand Cayman (where I am now),  I just wanted to rest and be with my family before I traveled again! However, since this is my first post from Cayman, I thought I would share what I have in my travel bag! More specifically, this is what I keep in my personal item bag when I’m on the plane.


Since my carry-on is a bigger carry on and is usually either stowed in the overhead compartment, I need to keep all of my essentials in this bag. So, before I left for California, I hunted for a good tote bag big enough to carry what I need, while not too big. So, as I usually do, I went to Goodwill and Community Aid first. I’m so glad that I did, because I found this gem at Community Aid for $10! It’s originally from Aldo, so I’m hoping that means that it’ll last for a long time.

So inside the bag, I try to keep everything pretty organized for easy access at the airport. I have a computer case holding my iPad and the little keyboard that I use to write my blog posts with (so, if you’ve seen more typos than usual, that’s probably why.. it’s a little more difficult to type with the bluetooth keyboard). I always have a book to read in the airport and on the plane, an I usually just take an easier read like this Sarah Dessen book. I have a book light in case I need it to read with on the plane, as well. I keep a brush and a scrunchie to keep my hair in line and out of my face. In the red “Fifteen Puzzle” case, I keep my earphones, so that they don’t get tangled up with other things in my bag. I also make sure to always have a notebook and a pen with me to write down ideas for blog posts and stories! Then of course, I have my sunglasses in their case and an extra battery charger for my phone if I my phone or iPad runs low on energy. I have my wallet for obvious reasons of course, with my ID and money. I have my quart-sized bag of toiletries that I can easily pull out for security.



Inside my toiletries bag, I keep my essentials that I can’t just put in my checked bag. So, here I have mascara, concealer, sunscreen, hand lotion, toothpaste, hand sanitizers, and deodorant. There are a few products, like the face mask and the deodorant, that I probably don’t need to put in with the liquids, but I just like to have them all together for easier storage.



I also have my makeup bag here from Ipsy, which I like to have on beach vacations since it is waterproof. Inside, I put some toiletries for the plane; such as an face wipes, eye mask, oil blotting sheets, earplugs, a nail file, and some hair ties. I’ve found all of these to be essentials while I’m traveling on a plane, especially on longer flights where you might like to try to sleep.

I’ve been really enjoying writing about travel-related things on my blog this summer, since it has been such a big part of my life for the last two months! I’m thinking about writing more about my advice for longer flights, since I took a red-eye back from California, and I thought of some extra tips for others who may be taking a red-eye or a longer flight while traveling! If anyone wants to see something in particular on my blog, please feel free to comment any blog post suggestions! I would love to see them 🙂



June Ipsy: REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I’m sorry that it’s been a little since I’ve posted! After I got back from the shore, I just wanted to relax. I’m also volunteering again this summer, so I’ve been pretty busy doing that again! However, right now I am in the Cayman Islands with my best friend, so expect a recap post about my adventures here next Monday!

So I thought that I would share my Ipsy bag from last month! As an “un-bagging” and as a review, since I’ve been plying around with the products for a couple of weeks since it came. This was a pretty mixed bag (pun intended). There were a couple that I liked, and a couple that I am not particularly a fan of.

The bag this month is pretty cute,  although it’s a little small. So it isn’t really a good makeup case, but I’ve used it for my phone for my beach bag while in Cayman!

City Color Cosmetics Shimmer Shadow in Cheers to Life

I really like this shadow so far! It’s pretty pigmented and sparkly, which I like, but still wearable. The copper color can spice up my more neutral summer makeup looks, which is always good!

NYX Whipped Lip & Cheek Souffle

I’m sort of torn on this one. I love NYX as a brand and I usually love their lipsticks and glosses, but this didn’t wear well as a lip product for me personally. It was too sheer and the lighter pink color doesn’t really look right with my skin tone. However, I do like it as a cream blush! I usually wear lighter pinks like this, so it is a cute color for summer. That, and it blends pretty nicely!

Margaret Dabbs London Nail Polish in Daylily

I’m not super fond of this polish. The color is cute, kind of a dark-ish teal, but it wears so quickly! I painted my nails one night before bed, and the next morning they were chipped after I did some packing and laundry for Cayman. Granted, I didn’t take the time to do a top coat, but I looked this brand up and they’re kind of pricey on their own! So, they shouldn’t be chipping that easily.

BioRepublic SkinCare sheet masks in Aloe Rescue and Green Tea Detox

I’ve used the Green Tea Detox so far and I thought it was nice and refreshing. However, for some reason the scent of the mask didn’t smell like green tea to me… It smells like the wipes we would use on our old cat Jaspurr when he wouldn’t clean himself. So, good mask with a weird scent memory attached to it. Although, if you know me, you know that my sense of my smell is kind of off, so don’t take my word on this as gospel truth xD

TheBalm Balm Springs Blush

I was so excited to see this in my bag! I had been wanting to try it out for a while, but since theBalm is usually pretty pricy I didn’t want to shell out the dollars for it. Honestly, I think if/when I run out I’ll just buy my own, because this blush is super pretty on and it wears well!


NUDESTIX Magnetic Matte Lip Color in Rose

Seraphine Botanicals Lychee+Gold blush

OFRA ‘Gold Rush’ or ‘Victory’ eyeshadow

Hanalei Lip Treatment in Rose

Tarte Amazonian Clay waterproof bronzer (which I am the most excited about, because I love Tarte products!!)

I hope you enjoyed this post and the review! I’ll do the same next month, too, and let you know what I think about the products! I’m pretty excited about next month’s bag, so hopefully it doesn’t disappoint!

I hope you’re all well, have a good night!




Cute Workout Clothes for CHEAP!

Hello Everyone!

So every girl (or guy) who works out knows the struggle: cute workout clothes are so expensive! If you walk into the Nike outlet, Lululemon, or any sporting goods store, a good pair of leggings could be something like 80 dollars or more. I’m sorry, but you will never see me spending that much money on just one pair of leggings.

However, over the years, I’ve discovered some other places that have clothes that are just as cute and inexpensive!

This top is from Reebok, and I got it from Goodwill. It wasn’t used, and still had the original tags on when I picked it up! Now, be warned, when you shop the activewear section in Goodwill or Community Aid, you really need to pick through and inspect everything because a lot of the stuff can be pretty gross. However, there are usually a few items that aren’t used or were barely worn, and those are of course the ones you want to pick up! I have gotten my favorite Adidas shorts from Goodwill, along with a few workout tops and sports bras. Again, be careful and take a good look at everything, but don’t discount Goodwill. You never know what you will find!

I got these RBX leggings from TJ Maxx. Now if you know me (or have read any of my past posts), you will know that half of my wardrobe is from TJ Maxx. And my workout clothes drawer is no different. I think I spent about 15 dollars on these capri-leggings! The price range for leggings at TJ Maxx that I’ve seen can be between 12-25 dollars, depending on the brand, for leggings at TJ Maxx. I have also gotten some of my favorite full length, high waisted leggings from Target. It’s been a while, but I’m pretty sure they can be in the 20 dollar range at Target.

Now, sneakers can be pretty tricky when if comes to affordability. You can get sneakers at any Target or Kmart, but I’ve been there and I’ve done that and I do not recommend it. If you’re serious about your workouts, you really need the technology and support from Nike or Adidas or something like that. Now, you don’t have to spend a million dollars, either, if you do some smart shopping! I got my favorite gym shoes, which are black Adidas sneakers, for about 40 dollars at TJ Maxx last summer! That, and if you go to an outlet store and go to the clearance rack, you can find some cute sneakers that are at a pretty good price.

Lastly, whenever I’m running I need to wear a baseball cap to keep my hair in place! I recently bought this hat from the Morgainz Collection, and I love it! The Morgainz Collection was started by my blogger friend Morgan, and all of her hats are super cute and inexpensive! That, and she is expanding her line very soon! She will also be stocking leggings and crop tops, and the leggings will be up on her website soon! So, if you are interested in supporting her super cute brand, you can use my 10% off coupon code!! It’s gingerintrovert 🙂

Let me know if you guys also have any tips for saving money on workout clothes, I would love to hear them!



Weekly Recap: Stone Harbor!



I woke up later than I expected (again…) at around 10, with coffee and doughnuts waiting downstairs. While I was sleeping, my boyfriend went to the beach, and then went back to the house before heading out with my mom and cousin to the bakery and the Wawa down the street. All this, before he woke my lazy butt up XD

After breakfast, we got ready and headed down to the beach. We had intended to stay for about an hour and then head back to meet my parents for lunch, but it was so windy at the beach again! We waded in the ocean for about five or ten minutes, but once we headed back and tried to lay down a blanket and sit, it felt like we were being sand-blasted! Needless to say, that “beach day” did not last long. We stayed for about five minutes more before heading back to the house for showers.

I got ready, and then our whole family headed out to a restaurant called Chill. It is a rooftop restaurant, so everyone was a little concerned about wind, but it ended up being pretty pleasant up on the rooftop! I had avocado toast and lentil soup. They were presented beautifully and I wish I had remembered to take a picture, but I was so hungry that I tore into my lunch without a second thought! It was a pleasant way to spend part of the afternoon, and since we had to wait a little longer than usual for our food, the restaurant sent us a dessert for us all to share, on the house! It was a s’mores dip, and it was dangerously good.

Nathaniel and I hunted down an ATM after lunch, and then shopped for a little bit. I got a couple pairs of sunglasses (which he treated me to because he’s such a sweetie), and he got some cheese from the Bread and Cheese Cupboard. We walked around a little bit more before returning back to the house for a nap. As you can probably already tell, this vacation in Stone Harbor is going to be a pretty lazy and laid back one! I’m okay with that.

We woke up for dinner, which was egg noodles with broccoli alfredo sauce, courtesy of my aunt! It was so delicious! After dinner, we tried to find baseball on TV, but instead, we settled for Last Man Standing, which is a family favorite! We all congregated inside, since a pretty wicked storm rolled in. Dark clouds were coming in pretty quickly, and as soon as the clouds came over us they started dumping rain. Pouring rain, wind, and lightning, and there was even a tornado warning at home! Even so, like most summer storms, it passed quickly and left us with just rain and sporadic lightning strikes.

After the worst of the storm had passed, Nathaniel had to leave to go home, which made me so sad! But I’m so glad that he was able to come for as long as he did 🙂 After he left, I just hung out with my family watching television, since we couldn’t go outside and go for an ice cream run (which has been postponed for tomorrow evening.)



Today, the guys all went on their annual golf trip. So, us girls usually plan a fun trip for ourselves as a group, too! This year it was my mom, aunt, grandmother, and me, so we decided on something a little more low-key. We went down to Cape May and just walked around the promenade, exploring all of the little shops. It had been a few years since I had been there, so it was nice to refresh my memory and go and see what was new there! We had lunch at a place called Delaney Irish Pub and Grill for lunch, and they had a surprisingly large and daring menu (for a self-declared Irish pub). I ended up getting a tomato and mozzarella salad, which was beautifully presented and delicious. I nearly cleaned my plate.

We walked around a little bit more, and stopped to get some ice cream for my grandmother, who was craving some. I got a scoop of tiramisu ice cream, which was a little too sweet but was still pretty good. It was just fun to hang out with the women in my family.

After we got back from Cape May, I went on a short run. It was so hot out that once I got back to my house my grandmother took one look at my beet red face and exclaimed, “You’re really sweating, girl!” I changed out of my sweaty and sunscreen-y clothes and drove into Philly with my aunt and uncle to pick up my cousin Sarah from her apartment. She wasn’t able to come at the beginning of the week, so we were really excited to see each other! She didn’t know that I was coming, so I was able to surprise her 🙂 I even got to meet her little kitten, Margo, who is the cutest and tiniest cat I have ever met!

On the way back to the shore, we stopped at Wawa to get something to eat for dinner. I got a quesadilla that was much better than a lot I’ve gotten at bonafide restaurants before! Once we got back to the shore, Sarah and I walked around the downtown area… and I got some more ice cream. I couldn’t help myself (insert monkey-covering-eyes emoji here). But we had a lot of fun just walking and catching up, and we walked to the ocean and the bay to watch the water. It was straight to bed after we got back to the house at around 11!


I went for a run after hanging out with my family at breakfast time. By the time I got back, Sarah and her friend Stephanie (who had arrived in the morning) had gone down to the beach, so I put on my swimsuit and joined them. I walked down to the beach with my dad, who wanted to track down my mom, who had been at the beach since early in the morning. It was a good thing I found her, since I had forgotten my beach tag back at the house! They’re pretty strict about the beach tags here. If you don’t have one, you can’t get on the beach, and that’s that. I found the girls, and we all sat in the sun together. Them tanning, me sitting and constantly spraying on my 100 SPF sunscreen. Once we got down to the water, it was so cold that we all screeched when the first tide came in and lapped at our toes. We got used to it after a while, but I’m always surprised at how chilly the water is, even in the dead of June.

After a few hours, we headed back to the house at 1 for lunch. I took a shower, because my bathing suit bottoms (the ones that I featured in my Summer Favorites!) bled black dye all over my waist. I still love the suit, but they’ve done that twice, even after washing them. I’m pretty sure that it’s because of the sunscreen, but there’s no getting away from that. It’s not like I’m going to burn (and I definitely would) to prevent it from rubbing black dye all over me. That, and can you imagine the weird burn I would get from that suit, since it has all the criss-cross detailing?

After my shower, we all ate some lunch and headed upstairs to relax. The girls took naps, and I worked on my blog post, Exercising on Vacation? After dinner, we all walked downtown to the bookstore, and after we got there a torrential downpour started. we ran from shop to shop trying to keep dry on the way back to the house. I wasn’t complaining, we stopped in a Teavana-like shop where I shamelessly tried all three teas and had a second sample of my favorite one. But, I did make up for it by buying some tea, so I think we’re even.



Today was an extremely laid back day. The rest of the girls in the family went to the beach but I wasn’t really feeling it for some reason. I decided to go for a run and relax at the house instead. I went to Green Cuisine to pick up lunch for those of us who were interested… and the food is really good, but way too overpriced, which I forget about every year. I worked on the blog and hung out with my family until dinner. My mom made her chicken divan (vegetarian style for me), which is a Stone Harbor tradition for our family. Sarah had gone back to Philly to go pick up her roommates to come down to the shore as well, and when they got back we all went to Kohr Brothers for ice cream. We walked around town some more after that, before going to the house to play Yahtzee. It lasted for an hour and a half, before one of Sarah’s friends finally got a Yahtzee to end the game. Then, we all went to bed.


Today was our last full day at the house! It was a rainy and dreary morning. But the whole family still went to Uncle Bill’s Pancake house (our annual tradition), where I got the pecan waffle. It was pretty good, however, the coffee could have been stronger. But my taste buds are pretty much dead from my excessive espresso consumption so it was probably just fine XD After that we came back to the house, we relaxed for a bit before I went for a speed-walk with my dad around town, since the weather had cleared up. We walked for over 2 miles, and stopped at the Wawa near our house to pick up some cokes. We sat and talked for a while longer until the girls caught up with us on their way to the beach. I headed back to the house to get ready to join them, and my mom came with me on the walk to the beach. I must have brought the bad luck, because once I got there it was pretty windy on the beach, so we didn’t stay for very long. I wanted to try an acai bowl from Shore Juice, so we walked there next. It was overpriced but worth it, because it was divine.

Once we got back to the house, I finished working on my OOTW post, and we watched the Food Network for a little while. Once we all got hungry, the girls went out for pizza at Stone Harbor Pizza. We got two large pizzas to all share, and the vegetarian pick was the bruschetta pizza which was to die for. Seriously, if you’re in the area, I highly recommend! I hadn’t been to the restaurant in a really long time and they’ve really stepped up their game with renovations and menu changes. Also, quick tip: it tasted even better with ranch, if you are a ranch lover like we are!

We went back to the house again, and went down to the bay to watch the sunset with my grandmom. The bay is right down the street from us, so it’s a quick walk away. It was so bright and the colors were more subdued, but still pretty nonetheless. We had fun sitting together, and singing (cough*badly*cough) the national anthem. I’m not exactly sure why, but we serenaded the water anyway. That, and we took some cute pictures.

We got ready and then went out to play mini golf. It was just us girls, since the parents and grandparents were too tuckered to come. The golf course that we like is a three level course, and we go there every year, too. Usually it’s the entire family going, but this was fun, too. We played about halfway through, doing a livestream for part of it, until the power went out completely. We looked around, and the lights were out in the shops across the street. It was fine since we had flashlights on our phones, but it was still a little creepy. We played for a few more minutes until we were kicked out… Understandable, but still disappointing. We didn’t get a refund, but instead, we got vouchers to use for our game next year.

It was strange, because only about half of the shops downtown were closed. So, we walked around town a little bit more until we were all tired enough to go home. The power was out in our house, too, so my mom and grandmother had lit some candles. We all headed upstairs to get ready for bed (in the dark), until the power finally came on at about 11:30ish. I wasn’t especially tired, so I packed up all of my stuff after the power came back on, and watched an episode of The Hills.



We all woke up early since we had to be out of the house by 10 am. We packed the car up and were the last to leave, and before leaving town we stopped by 101st street’s gazebo to say goodbye to the ocean, which is a tradition that my family has. We always have to say goodbye to the ocean, and take some pictures as a family. Then, we just drove home and relaxed for the rest of the night.




OOTW: Stone Harbor

Hello everyone!

Whenever I go to Stone Harbor with my family, I always try to put a little more thought and effort into my outfits. (Meaning, I wildly overpack.) So, I thought that this year I would document my choices for the day for the blog, since it’s been a while since I’ve done an outfit post.

As always, keep in mind that I am not Gigi Hadid (not even close), but I’m trying! Looking back at these pictures, I realize that I also need to vary my pose choices… I’m learning!



Top: an oxford shirt made into an off-the-shoulder shirt by yours truly!
Skirt: Thrifted
Shoes: Thrifted

Monday OOTW

White bodysuit: thrifted
Shirt: Thrifted
Shoes: Target (old)


Top: H&M (old)
Shorts: Thrifted
Shoes: TJ Maxx

Wednesday OOTW

Shirt: TJ Maxx
Shirt: Thrifted
Shoes: TJ Maxx

Thursday OOTW

Top: TJ Maxx
Skirt: Thrifted
Shoes: TJ Maxx

Friday OOTW

Shirt: Firefly in Paso Robles
Jeans: Thrifted
Shoes: TJ Maxx

Okay, so I have some bad news… since most, if not all of these outfits are comprised of things that were A) thrifted or B) from TJ Maxx, which is the absolute worst when it comes to finding links to share. So, I can do some more research and update as I find things that are similar, but for right now I’m having a lot of trouble. It just speaks to the fact that I shop at one of three places: TJ Maxx, Community Aid, or Goodwill. There is rarely an exception, unless I’ve been online shopping (and your girl does not have the funds for that right now). Or, for Friday’s case, I got the off-the-shoulder top at Firefly in Paso Robles when I was in California, and I’m not having much luck finding that online either. Sorry guys!

Real quick before I sign off for the week, this Monday I will be posting my Stone Harbor weekly recap, but I am thinking that it will be my last weekly recap post until Cayman. I might do weekend recaps until then if I do anything interesting, but once I’m home I’m mostly just going to be volunteering and exercising. So that’s the plan for now, but as always, it could be subject to change 🙂




Exercising on Vacation?

Hello Everyone!

Today is the first day of summer! And since it’s summertime and almost everyone has at least one trip planned, I thought I would write a little bit about how you can exercise while you’re on vacation. Even if it is the last thing you might want to do while you’re supposed to be relaxing and having fun, but I know that I at least want to be a little proactive with my fitness goals, even on vacation. So, I thought about it, and these are some of the things that I have done in the past to keep myself on track, without a gym nearby to count on.

Research ahead of time.

A week or two before you go on vacation, do a little bit of research. If you’re going to a hotel, does it have a gym or a pool you can swim laps in? Are the roads near where you’re staying safe for running? Also, maybe look on YouTube and find some hotel-friendly workout videos! I highly suggest Ballet Beautiful and Blogilates, they’re both Pilates based mat workouts that don’t need equipment and don’t take up an awful lot of space.

Combine site-seeing with your workouts.

This kind of goes hand-in-hand with doing your research. See if there are some hiking trails with beautiful views you could go see. If you’re going to the beach, go for a run on the beach! Rent a bike and ride it around the town where you’re staying. It’s also fun (and usually surprisingly inexpensive) to rent a canoe on a lake, too!

Come prepared.

Whenever I travel, I usually pack an exercise band or a resistance band in my suitcase, because working out with those in a hotel or a house can be pretty challenging! Also (and stick with me on this one), gliding disks don’t take up a lot of space in your suitcase, and those workouts are always plenty challenging for me. If you don’t have disks, use paper plates, plastic baggies that you can tie around your feet, or even those dumb bra inserts that they always put in swimsuits that I usually just pull out and throw away (and they work surprisingly well, under the circumstances). Bring along small things like this and stick to them if you don’t want to run or bike, but don’t have a hotel gym. They do the trick for short periods of time, like a week long vacation!

Work with what you’ve got.

Even if you forget (which has happened to me plenty of times), there’s still lots you can do with a beach/bath towel (as a makeshift yoga mat) and a smartphone. YouTube has been a lifesaver many many times! Just look up “hotel workout” or “apartment workout” and plenty of options will appear.

Be realistic.

Let’s be real for a minute. We all have the best intentions to keep up with our workouts, but sometimes it just doesn’t pan out the way we thought. And that’s okay! Don’t beat yourself up about it, especially if you’re on a trip to a place like Disney or Orlando where you’re already doing a lot of walking. HAVE FUN!! It’s your vacation! If you want to work out that’s one thing. However, if it’s making you miserable to keep up with your workouts and you feel like you’re missing out on experiences that you paid to be on vacation to experience, just don’t do it! You can always get back on track once you get home, but that’s a whole other blog post 🙂


I hope this helps! If you have any tricks or tips for keeping track on vacation, please feel free to share them in the comments. I would love to see! And to help you guys out, here are some YoutTube videos that I’ve used in the past, and recommend for you guys… Not just for vacay use, but any time!


Tone It Up Love Your Body HIIT 


Rebecca Louise “How To Get A Summer Body” 

Ballet Beautiful 

I use each of these workouts and channels often, and love all of them! I hope you like them, too!