Pretty (Powerful) in Pink!

Lately it seems that blush is all the rage, and I couldn’t be happier about it! I am a huge fan of anything that makes me feel like a princess, and this dress fits the bill.

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Currently in our society, women are so often told that we must wear dark colors, and pantsuits, or over sexualize our bodies to be powerful. Honestly, this concept perplexes me. If you feel strong in girly clothes, then I encourage you to go for it! While I understand that it feels so difficult in today’s society to stand out and be a powerful young lady, I believe that we don’t need to wear boring clothes to do it. I command respect with my skills, and personality, especially when I’m wearing a dress like this!

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So if the only thing holding you back from all things girly is the judgement of others, forget about it! Saying that a woman must emulate a man to be powerful and strong is the wrong mindset. We need to encourage each other to dress in a manner that makes us feel “Pretty Powerful,” in the words of Bobbi Brown.

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This girly Lauren Conrad dress is SO me. I’m not sure whether I’m happier about the pale pink color, the light material, or the adorable 3-D flowers! Paired with some fun floral pumps and my gorgeous Kate Spade handbag (which happens to match perfectly) this look just screams confidence!

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What is one outfit that makes you feel, “Pretty Powerful?” -PS

Dress: Kohls / Shoes: DSW / Bag: Kate Spade / Watch: Michael Kors / Ring: Pandora

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Turning Twenty!

As I approached the big 2-0 I’ve been feeling such a strange mix of emotions. One half of me feels like this is rather impossible. Didn’t I just get my braces off? Wasn’t my bang phase just last week?! It’s really kind of insane how old 20 seems. I’ve been dealing with some of my usual, “Pre-Birthday Anxiety,” which has crept up on me since the year I turned 15. Let me explain what exactly my PBA is. Basically I’ve always been a perfectionist. I had a set plan for my life and a schedule to stick to. I set really lofty and sort of insane goals for myself when I was a little girl. I was supposed to be driving, get a boyfriend, and wearing makeup daily when I was sixteen. I still don’t have my licence, and have only taken to wearing makeup the past couple of years.

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Then I was supposed to get married by eighteen… What on earth was I thinking?! I met my boyfriend right after turning 19. He is so amazing and I’m so lucky to have found such a sweet boy, but we aren’t in a hurry to get hitched. We understand that our education is so important, and we are enjoying dating each other. Speaking of education, so many of what I thought were shortcomings have to do with education. I was supposed to be out of the house and living in a cool apartment somewhere by now. I went to a big state university when I was 17, and I hated it. I became very sad and unmotivated, and at one point even music seemed pointless. I wasn’t attending church and felt very alone. I came home and have been attending my local college. While this felt like a failure in my eyes, it has been so good for me! I have a job at a beautiful church, I am president of an amazing choir, and I have made so many fantastic friends. I may not have achieved my crazy goals in the time period I used to think was appropriate, but I am SO proud of who I am. I am a strong woman who survived and grew from her sadness. I am a published author of poetry and prose. I am an award-winning young soprano. I am a loving and compassionate friend.

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So why did I write this? I wrote this for everyone who has read “20 things you should do before…” or “15 must dos by..” article. Don’t give yourself absolutes. Create attainable goals that mean something. Becoming me has been a long journey. There were moments I thought that I couldn’t continue. That life was too hard. But those moments of sadness and self-doubt, are dwarfed by the number of times I have been overwhelmed by how God has blessed me. Sunsets, Disney World fireworks, running barefoot in the snow. Going on a mission trip was totally not in my original plan, but it was a life altering experience, and better than what my plan was.Thank you to my family for passing on your values and guiding me down the right path. Thank you to my friends for opening up my eyes to new points of view. Thank you to those who have been less than kind for building up my resilience. Basically, thank you to anyone who has had any involvement in my life! Although the fact that I hit the two decade mark today is still daunting, I am all in all very proud of who I am, and who I am in the process of becoming! -PS

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Skirt: Vineyard Vines / Shirt: Gap / Watch: Michael Kors / Shoes: Vince Camuto / Ring: Pandora 

First Day of School

The first day of school has always been one of the most exciting days of the year for me, (once I’ve had my coffee) and this year is no exception! There is something so thrilling about the prospect of learning new things, and meeting new people.

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I know that not everyone feels the same way. In high school, I used to dread the first day back to school. It wasn’t the classes, or even the teachers, it was my fear of not, “fitting in.” I have always loved learning, and that will never change.  The older I got, the more I realized that there is honestly a social group for everyone. I may have a type-A personality, be choir president, and adore literature, but that doesn’t mean I’m weird, and neither are you!

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This year, I encourage you to embrace your individuality, no matter how difficult that may be. Believe me when I say the world is so much more than who you hung out with in Middle and High School, or even college! So get out there and learn not just in the classroom, but in everything you do!

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-PS

 Skirt: Tommy Hilfiger / Shirt: Gap / Shoes: Jacks / Ring: Pandora

Fun Lilly Finds!

To a preppy girl, summer means one thing: LILLY! I’ve already talked about my love of Lilly, but now it’s time to talk about where all that Lilly comes from. My first Lilly purchase was during the After Party sale! I woke up early and was able to snag an adorable shift.

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Although I adore the After Party sale, it’s hard for me to wait six months between Lilly splurges. I considered buying some full priced items, but it just isn’t in my budget to spend that much money on clothes that are pretty casual. When I made my first visit to T.J Maxx, I found an adorable Lilly case and a vineyard vines belt. They were each only five dollars!

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From that moment, I was hooked! Although there are always great deals, my latest find at TJ Maxx takes the cake! I happened to find this cute strapless top in the clearance section for (wait for it…) TWELVE DOLLARS. I had sticker shock in the best was possible!

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I wore this fun little number with jeans to the Premios Juventud and my nude Vince Camuto pumps, which were a steel at just under thirty bucks! For a nice brunch, I would pair this top with white jeans, wedges, and my beautiful baby pink Kate Spade bag.

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Another fun way to style this top for a more casual look, like sightseeing (or shopping the After Party sale!!) is by throwing your hair up into a braided ponytail, and pairing it with white shorts and a pair of Jacks!

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What’s the best deal you’ve found this summer? –PS

Shirt: TJ Maxx / Purses: Kate Spade & Calvin Klein / Bracelet & Ring: Pandora / Necklaces: Tiffany’s & Etsy

Delightful Disney Recap!

Happy Wanderlust Wednesday! Today I decided to do a little recap of my exciting Disney adventures with Skye! Right before the trip, Skye surprised me with an adorable pair of Disney Vans! (Ariel themed, of course!) We had a blast with our shoes, which match our personalities!

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The first thing we did once we made our way to Magic Kingdom, was to pick up a pair of ears for Skye. She of course chose a villainous pair! We took a couple (well.. a couple dozen?) pictures in front of my house (aka Cinderella’s castle!) before we got all hot and sticky.

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Then we were off to The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train! After this, we had to ride Splash Mountain. Now don’t you dare laugh, but Splash Mountain is the one ride I am always terrified to get on. Put me on Space Mountain, or Even Island of Adventure’s The Hulk, and I’m fine, but there is something so scary about the little animatronic fox plotting Briar Rabbit’s demise. Despite my terror, I conquered my fears for my mommy and Skye! Once this was out of the way, we crammed in as many rides as we could! Between running from ride to ride, we enjoyed lunch at Pecos Bill, and of course since it was a scorcher, a delectable Dole Whip!

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All in all, it was a lovely trip, and such an amazing way to celebrate Skye and my 10 year, “friendaversary!” What have you celebrated at The Happiest Place on Earth? -PS

Top: Old Navy / Shorts: Gap / Shoes: Vans / Necklaces: Tiffany’s & Etsy / Ring: Pandora

Oh Hey, Monet!

This dress has been a go to piece in my closet for a very long time. As an art lover, this dress jumped out at me as a beautiful and unique piece. My mom and I have affectionately dubbed it, “The Monet Dress,” and were so sad when the store we bought it from (Delia’s) closed, but so glad to hear they reopened!

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Monet is most know for his impressionist art. I was lucky enough to get to see my favorite piece, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, in person. The amazing thing about impressionistic art is that it is all about distance. From far away, it looks like a beautiful and rather lifelike picture, but up close it is merely tiny dots. I believe that it emulates life in a way. Our daily life tends to seem insignificant and mundane, but if we take a step back and examine our life as a whole, we find the beautiful bigger picture to be quite evident.

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Now that I’ve had my artsy moment, let’s get down to why I love this dress! Obviously the pattern is what first called out to me, but the flattering shape is a close second! This dress makes me feel girly, confidant, and oh so pretty! It makes gray days so much brighter!

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It is often said that art imitates life, but far less often that clothes imitate art! -PS

Dress: Delia’s / Shoes: Jack Rogers / Ring: Pandora / Necklace: Tiffany’s

Disney Tips and Tricks!

Since I am headed out to The Happiest Place on Earth once again with my best friend, Skye, I thought it was high time I did a post about Walt Disney World! Disney is just about my favorite place on Earth:  from the exciting rides, to the yummy food, and the truly magical atmosphere! As a seasoned annual pass holder, I believe it is my duty to share some insider knowledge that I wish I had known for my first trip to Magic Kingdom.

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So without further ado, here are some tips to make your trip to The Happiest Place on Earth the happiest it can be!!

  1. If you are visiting any of the Disney Parks for a special occasion, such as a birthday or anniversary, be sure to stop by the guest relations area! They will give you a complementary personalized pin! It’s so fun to get, “Happy Birthday!” from other guests and cast members!
  2. Most of the restaurants will give you complementary ice water regardless of whether you are purchasing a meal or not. While Orlando water isn’t the tastiest, in the summer months, it is vital to stay hydrated. This is good to know because often people will spend lots of money on bottled water when they don’t really need to. Save that cash for some ears!!
  3. Fast passes are awesome! You can have up to three fast passes at a time, so make sure to snag the fast passes for your favorite ride first! (I would personally recommend the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train!) If you are staying at a Disney Resort, you can schedule your fast passes ahead of time!
  4. Bring ponchos! Yes, they are available for purchase at the parks, but once again, you may want to save your money for more exciting things (like the yummy caramel apples!)
  5. Finally, take a picture in front of the Castle first thing. I know everyone is so excited to get to the rides and start having a magical day, but you will want pictures to remember the magic! You can ask the Disney photographers to take a picture with your camera and/ or phone. Taking the classic castle picture first thing ensures everyone will have smiling faces!

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These are just five of sooo many tips to help you have a magical adventure! In the words of a famous mouse, “See ya real soon!” -PS

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Dress: Gap / Hat: Marley Lilly / Shoes: B.O.C / Ring: Pandora