So you want a puppy? 10 Things to Consider First.

So you want a puppy? 10 Things to Consider First.

I don’t blame you. Getting a puppy was easily the greatest decision I have ever made. Waffles, who you may be sick of seeing pictures of by now if you follow me on Instagram, has brought me so much joy, responsibility, and unconditional love that I can’t truly describe how thankful I am that he joined my little family.

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How to Stay Grounded when You’re Becoming Overbooked and Overworked

How to Stay Grounded when You’re Becoming Overbooked and Overworked

Note: This article was previously published on another blog platform and has been updated to reflect a few (wonderful) life changes

Between work, school, the gym, dinners with friends, birthdays, holidays, laundry, family time and anything else you may be juggling it’s easy to overbook yourself. With the constant pressure to be able to do it all despite only having 24 hours in a day what starts as an easy to manage schedule can quickly become a nightmare. I know from experience.

Right now I am juggling a lot. I have a full-time job in marketing, work at Lululemon on the weekends, I run my own blog and Instagram, am training for the 2018 Chicago Marathon and just got a puppy. Not to mention I have a wide social circle and a boyfriend all who need my love and attention, boyfriend especially! Just writing all of this out feels like a headache, and I’m just writing down a list, not actually doing anything (well, okay technically I’m blogging right now).

My friends, family and coworkers are constantly asking me how I’m not banging my head into a wall, stressed out of my mind, functioning like a zombie, and trying to quit half of my responsibilities. And while some days I think they’re right and that it would be easier to just give something up, the reality is all of these things bring value and joy to my life and I don’t want to have to say goodbye to any of them. So instead, I’ve spent the last few months (well, years really) figuring out how to stay afloat when I should be drowning.

It may be self-proclaimed, but according to everyone I know who watches my balancing act I’ve become an expert at staying sane when, from the outside, it really looks like you shouldn’t be. But how do I do it? I’m glad you asked.

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Flowers for Every Occasion

Flowers for Every Occasion

BouquetAndTrayThere are few things that make me happier than a surprise bouquet of flowers. From their vibrant color to the intoxicating smell, a fresh bouquet in my apartment brings a huge smile to my face. And it’s not just me! Studies show that flowers trigger happy brain chemicals – so they actually do improve your mood. Which is why they make the perfect gift for every occasion.

Whether it’s to express condolences or joy, for an anniversary or Valentine’s Day, a birthday or Mother’s Day (Hint! Hint! At least one of these is coming up soon), a beautiful bouquet is the perfect way to show you care. Continue reading “Flowers for Every Occasion”

2018 Goals: March Recap

2018 Goals: March Recap

Does anyone else feel like March flew by? All of the sudden I woke up and it was April but still as cold as a brisk day in February. Maybe that’s why I can’t comprehend that March has come and gone and more goals can be checked off – or that I’m just getting to this post and it’s already the 18th. (I promise a new goal is to write these for you sooner!)

It was admittedly a mixed month of goal crushing and, well, not crushing. I managed to try out a new recipe and TWO new studios, but unfortunately my book of the month rolled over a little into April. While I’m bummed that I didn’t finish it in March, I’m happy that I was able to start another amazing read and that I’m pushing myself to finish it so I can get on to something new for April. While I may not have hit my true goal, I’m still doing things that help me become a better person and push me to do things that I previously wouldn’t have, and in my book (pun intended) that’s a win. Continue reading “2018 Goals: March Recap”

Coworking Meets Luxury in the West Loop

Coworking Meets Luxury in the West Loop

I don’t know about you, but often times my environment dictates my productivity. When I try to power through work at home I find myself taking breaks to do laundry or grab a snack from the fridge, wander to bed and need a nap, or the dreaded “I can get this done while watching The Real Housewives.” And while I’ve looked into coworking spaces to get my blogging done none ever fit my needs. They felt too informal, had kitchens I could wander in to for beer and coffee and get distracted talking to someone, or were spaces that felt more like a hangout than a work environment. That is, until Co-Optim moved into the West Loop. Continue reading “Coworking Meets Luxury in the West Loop”

2018 Goals: February Recap

​This post is one that has taken me a long time to write – not because I didn’t hit my goals – but because I really only enjoyed one of them. I thought I failed because my recipe wasn’t great and didn’t photograph well, and I felt guilty because I did not like the studio I tried – but then I realized something: this is the whole reason I set these goals.

Some months will have more joyous outcomes than others, but every month I’ll get out of my comfort zone, learn something, and try something new. I’m learning to cook (even if some meals are not photogenic or delicious), I’m reading books that will help me grow and develop, and I’m trying new workouts to push myself to work new muscle groups and try things that make me uncomfortable. With that being said, here’s what I was up to in February:

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International Women’s Day 2018

International Women’s Day 2018

IMG_7531.JPGAs many of you know, International Women’s Day (IWD) is coming up this week. On Thursday, March 8th, people throughout the world unite in order to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. In addition, IWD marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

As explained on its website, IWD “has been observed since the early 1900’s – a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies. International Women’s Day is a collective day of global celebration and a call for gender parity. No one government, NGO, charity, corporation, academic institution, women’s network or media hub is solely responsible for International Women’s Day. Many organizations declare an annual IWD theme that supports their specific agenda or cause, and some of these are adopted more widely with relevance than others.”

The theme for this year’s IWD is Press for Progress, a call-to-action designed to help accelerate the statistic that gender parity is over 200 years away. To learn more about the theme, which kicks off March 8th, visit their website, here.

Events will be held world-wide to celebrate, create dialogues and cultivate positive change. And while you can find events for cities across the world on the International Women’s Day site, I’ve created a round-up of some exciting things happening in Chicago.

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2018 Goals: January Recap

For those of you who saw my post on my goals for 2018, you know that every month I’ll be reading one new book, learning one new recipe, and trying on new fitness studio. Well, I can proudly say I survived the first month with all my goals still on track, though it did require a lot of last-minute reading (about 70 pages if I’m being honest).

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The challenge

The challenge

The other day my friend Geoff sent me a challenge. He told me that every day I should set three goals for myself. They could be to try a new restaurant, make a new friend, go to the gym – whatever I wanted – but at the end of the day if I didn’t accomplish my goals I have to reflect on why. As he said “progress not perfection. ”

It got me thinking about what we do in a day and the ripple effect it has and the progress it helps us make day by day. How reflection can help us. How motivation can guide us. And in addition to setting goals, I began reflecting on what I could practice daily to help myself progress daily towards my goals. So from now on, day by day, I strive for these things:

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New Year, New Goals

It’s officially the new year and everyone is talking about their resolutions – except for me.

Honestly, I hate new years resolutions for the sole fact that they stem from such negative feelings about ourselves. With the focus primarily on how much weight we need to lose, what we failed at in 2017, or the old saying of “new year, new me” the constant need to change ourselves year over year astonishes me. In fact, I’ve already seen posts from people beating themselves up because they already “failed” at their resolution. It’s been three days! There are so many opportunities to make things happen, don’t get down on yourself already! It may be a new year, but I am the same, self-loving me that you’ve known and (hopefully) loved all year.

While I don’t want to spend the year attempting to change who I am at my core, or resolving to change how I look, I do want to go into 2018 with some goals that I can accomplish. They’re not meant to change me, but they are some things that will help me grow as a person.

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