currently loving...

hello there! just wanted to share what i'm loving from this week...

ingrid michaelson's new album, "human again"

not to sound at all like a music snob, but i have loved ingrid michaelson since i downloaded her first album in 2007, "girls and boys", after hearing the way i am in an old navy sweater commercial. i still love that album to this day, and the two that were released since then. my sister loves her too, so we've seen her the past couple times she's made it to chicago. her latest album, "human again" just came out this week, and i fell in love all over again. haha. so sappy. i'm glad this one is back to the edgy/angry vibe a little bit. the lyrics are so well written. my current favorites are ribbons and how we love... always you is incredibly beautiful too. she released her spring tour dates, and i snagged 2 tickets for the chicago show. i cannot wait!

the descendants

i just recently saw this movie with a couple girlfriends, and i loved it so much. i remember seeing the trailer on itunes months ago and instantly wanted to see it. then it started gaining all this press, and i hoped it that wouldn't fall short of the hype. it certainly did not. it is beautifully acted, quite funny and tragic all at the same time. and a 90% on rotten tomatoes! seriously, if you get the chance, go see it.

i'm eagerly awaiting my next birchbox, which should be here any day now, so i'll do another post about those goodies. i also have some new beauty favorites i plan on sharing, and a more in depth look at photojojo's easy macro cell lens band that i received for christmas (and i absolutely LOVE).

hope you all are having a good weekend! we're celebrating a friend's birthday tonight, then i'll be in san diego for a video shoot early next week. hopefully i'll be back midweek with a post or two.


"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

still one of my favorite quotes, from anyone. i also really liked this one too: 
"I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."

thank you for everything you have taught us, Martin Luther King, Jr.


i was pretty excited when i found out that my mom got me a subscription to birchbox for christmas. i first heard about the monthly beauty subscription from liz at chanel & chocolate cake, and i like the idea of being able to try out new beauty products without having to pay $$$ for the full sizes at my local beauty store. this lovely package below what i received shortly after christmas:
jouer moisturizing lip gloss - the one i received is a really bright pink, but applies more sheer than i thought, so even though i'm not big on the bright pink shades, i think it will layer nicely with other lip colors.

oscar blandi pronto invisible volumizing dry shampoo - i have actually wanted to try this dry shampoo for a long time, but hesitated b/c of the price. and over the holidays, i ALMOST bought a travel sized can at ulta, and i'm so glad i didn't! i just used it yesterday and i like it a lot. it has a slight lemon scent, but it's not overpowering at all.

showstoppers designer fashion tape - haven't had a need for these yet, but i'm sure they will come in handy at some point.

harvey prince yogini perfume - i wasn't a big fan of this scent. it was a little too musky for me. but i'll probably throw it in a travel bag as a "just-in-case" scent to use.

EBOOST orange natural energy booster - haven't tried it yet, but i heard from other bloggers that it's good!

laura geller i-care waterproof liner - this was by far my favorite item in this month's birchbox!!! i received a full sized caffee mocha and i love it! it's a little lighter brown than my other go-to brown eyeliner (i wear brown about 90% of the time), but it's a nice change :)

so far i'm loving birchbox! i've heard that the monthly packages can be hit or miss, but i'm already looking forward to my next one. i've also heard a lot about a similar subscription service, myglam, that is getting rave reviews across the board (except for their website, yikes!). they are currently sold out of subscriptions, but i'm hoping to try them out too when the bags are back in stock. in the meantime, i'm totally content with birchbox.

anyone subscribing to birchbox, myglam, or another beauty subscription right now? did you get anything amazing? :)

goal for the new year...

i know a lot of people make the resolution to work out (more) at the beginning of a new year, including myself, and the motivation usually tapers off before spring hits. but this year i feel like it will be different for me, and i'm pretty excited about that :) i actually started a workout routine near the end of october, and although i'm not hitting the gym as often as i'd like just yet, it's definitely at the point where going to workout is becoming a habit, and i make sure to fit it into my weekly schedule.

i chose to blog about the ease into 5K app because it really is a great program for someone who's not used to running. to be honest, i hate running. i always have. but i know that it is a great overall workout for your body, so i decided to download the app.

the program is 9 weeks long, and does a great job of easing you into running. the bursts of walking in between really helped me out. i love that the app alerts me when it's time to run and walk, because trying to keep track of that while running would be impossible! what's also really cool is that you can load a playlist into the app so you don't have to sacrifice your workout songs in order to hear the app alerts.

i'm a little over halfway done right now. and i remember looking ahead to week 5 workouts when i was still in week 1 and thought, "no way can i do that!"... but now that i'm there, it's not so bad. each day is a push from the last, but it's still very attainable. and if i feel like i need more time until the next push, i just repeat the last workout (which helped a lot when i had a week between runs b/c of scheduling conflicts).

once i finish this one, i plan on moving onto the bridge to 10K app, which a friend of mine is doing right now. she says it's tough but she likes it a lot.

have any of you tried this program? or do you have another routine that works great for you? i'd love to hear :)

'til next time,

hello 2012! (massive blog update)

hello hello! my sincere apologies for disappearing on this blog since the summer :/ like i mentioned before, i was in a bit  of a funk and didn't feel like blogging much at all. but here we are in the new year, and i'm going to get back to regular posts!

here's a recap of the last few months (a bit image heavy):

on august 20th, our very good friends denny and krystina became husband and wife. their wedding was magical, and so much fun. they had amazing photographers and videographers to document the day, and everything turned out so cool! i can't wait to see their full video. (their photos & video, photo on bottom right from gina meola photography)

on september 23rd, another pair of very good friends, chris and jayma, got hitched! i was honored to be in the wedding as jayma's maid of honor :) it was such a good time, everything went smoothly and everyone had a great time. they also had a stellar photography team, george street photo & video. (the b&w image below is from their set)

although the weddings were a blast this summer, the couples were happy to be done planning as fall approached, and we were all ready to party for halloween! we rented a trolley and roamed downtown chicago. so much fun! (and i was super excited to be the black swan)

in november, we had another great 40DoX party to kick off the christmas season. below are a few shots from the photo area (a tropical christmas theme this year).

thanksgiving weekend the family and i flew to phoenix, az for my cousin matt's wedding. it was really nice to spend the whole weekend with family, and i was floored that we could enjoy an outdoor wedding at the end of november! ha, that doesn't happen here in the midwest. marissa did an amazing job with the decorations, and it really was a unique wedding.

christmas was great this year. everyone was super generous, and i received some great gifts! below are a few of my favorites: a 6 month subscription to birchbox, tickets to michael jackson's immortal tour, and the coolest macro iphone lens from photojojo (added bonus, also takes amazing bokeh shots).

and lastly, we rang in the new year last night with great friends in chi town! i still can't believe it's 2012 already, but i'm excited for this year :)

hope you all had a great christmas and new years! and thank you to those who are still following this blog...i'll make sure that i post WAY more often...haha.

til next time! xoxoxo