Christmas 2016

December 26, 2016

     Merry Christmas! Even though it was yesterday, I'm typing this on the couch while watching Avengers with my brother (it was one of his gifts from me). Today has been such a great family day, and I think it has to do with the fact that we all know that this time next year I'll have just gotten back from my first semester in college. 

Holiday Gift Guide 2016

December 19, 2016



      There's less than one week until Christmas, so time is running out to buy gifts for our nearest and dearest. Every year, I struggle to pick out gifts because I either have too many ideas that I can't afford, or I have absolutely no ideas at all! This year, it's been a bit easier than usual, so I decided to create a gift guide. This gift guide is composed completely of gifts that I've given and have been successful or that I've received and loved! Leave a comment with your best gift ideas! My next post will be the day after Christmas, so stay tuned! Xoxo, Lauren.

Holiday Wish List 2016

December 12, 2016


     I'm back with my 3rd annual holiday wish list! I started doing this in 2014, and it was helpful for "Santa", as well as my friends and family. I did it again in 2015, and now here we are with 2016's edition. I feel like I have to give the disclaimer that I don't except all or any of these items for Christmas, they're just a few things I have my eyes on. I've tried to include items varying in prices so you can get a variety of ideas for your own wish lists, as well as ideas of what to get friends! Stay tuned for a few more holiday posts this season, xoxo Lauren!

Book Talk: Leave Your Mark by Aliza Licht

December 1, 2016

     It's taken me a few days to get back into the swing of things since being off for Thanksgiving break, but I'm finally back! For me, Thanksgiving was restful yet busy. Somehow between stuffing my face with my sister's lasagna and Black Friday shopping into the early morning, I found time to read.

Thanksgiving Dance 2016

November 21, 2016

     Welcome back! I can't believe that November is almost over, which means that Thanksgiving, AKA my favorite holiday, is only a few days away. Until then I'll be cuddled up in my bed every night watch the Thanksgiving episodes of Gossip Girl (everyone knows they're the best) and waiting for the Gilmore Girls revival to be released on Netflix! This past Saturday, I attended my school's annual Thanksgiving Dance. I've been on the committee for the past two years, and since I'm a senior this was my last year to attend. I went, again, with my best friend Kyra; our pictures didn't turn out great so here are a couple I took with my sister before leaving!

Girlboss Radio

November 10, 2016

     It's been a while, over two weeks, but I'm back today to talk about something a little different, a podcast. Last October, I blogged about a book called #GIRLBOSS that I had just started reading. I finished it shortly after writing that post and I ended up loving, Sophia Amoruso's story is captivating and well-told, while giving insightful advice about the fashion industry and the world of business. A few months ago, I found out about Sophia Amoruso's podcast by the same name through one of my favorite bloggers, Nicole, who writes Empire Styles.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie

October 24, 2016

     The end of October is full of pumpkins; pumpkin spice lattes at Starbucks (and everywhere else these days) and carving pumpkins for Halloween. My favorite pumpkin-related food of all time is my sister’s pumpkin pie, but I usually don’t get that until Thanksgiving, which is kind of a shame. This past weekend, I was craving my sister’s pumpkin pie so badly and I was prepared to beg and barter and until she made one, until I realized that her famous recipe is. not. vegan. I scoured Pinterest looking for a vegan pumpkin pie recipe that was as close to my sister’s as possible, and I finally stumbled upon one that I could work with. I changed the recipe a bit to fit the ingredients I had, and I love the way it turned out! It’s still not as good as my sister’s recipe, but it’ll do until I can convince my sister to revamp her pumpkin pie to vegan!

Windy Gap: A Young Life Camp

October 17, 2016

{my squirrlie girlie, Lily|
    Something I've never talked about on my blog before is that I consider myself a Christian. I don't worship God in the traditional sense as far as going to church on Sundays, but one way I do pray is through Young Life. If you don't know what Young Life is, it's a Christian organization that has branches in a number of areas for middle school, high school, and college. We meet once a week as a group to jam, play games, and talk about Jesus; and then we meet again in groups of all boys or all girls to further connect with Jesus and each other. I've been a part of the group for about a year now and I absolutely love it.

Pumpkin Patch

October 3, 2016
  
   Today is my good friend Lexi's birthday, happy birthday Lexi ♥︎! This past Saturday, Lexi and I, along with 9 of her closest gal pals, celebrated by going to a pumpkin patch. It such a fun fall activity and the weather was gorgeous, so I couldn't help but take a bunch of pictures! When we first arrived we took a hayride to a corn maze. It was super fun running (but mostly walking) through the corn. From there we rode to part of the pumpkin patch and began our searches for the perfect pumpkin. I wanted a dusty/pale orange pumpkin, and luckily it didn't take me long to find it. At first, I was considering getting a white pumpkin and decorating it with gold paint as seasonal room decor. But, as we all know, DIYs are not my thing so I settled for a classic orange pumpkin. On the hayride back, I realized that I didn't have my phone. So, after setting our pumpkins in the car, my friend Lundy went back to the pumpkin field with me to help me find my phone. Honestly, only I would lose my phone in a pumpkin patch, so shoutout to Lundy for helping me out. Lundy and I returned to the group to find them playing in a pit of corn. We were both skeptical about joining them, to be honest, it reminded me of the sandbox from elementary school and those things are notoriously germy. But, after all, you only live once, and what is life if you can't enjoy jumping in a corn pit with your gals? Then, it was time to go, so we all gathered in a field to take a bunch pictures, as girls do. Thank you Lexi, for such a fun and memorable fall day, and I hope you have an amazing 17th birthday! Xo Lauren.







top: tobi.com
skirt: J. crew factory
shoes: Steve Madden
necklace: MonogrammedFromMeToYou
watch: Kate Spade

ColourPop Lippies

September 29, 2016


A few weeks ago, around Labor Day I think, ColourPop was having a sale. For a year now I've been waiting for a reason to try out their lip products, as I've heard so many great things. With lipsticks priced at just $6, I couldn't resist. In my order, I purchased three lips products and got one for free which was super exciting. I ended up giving the shade I received for free to my sister, it's a great shade but not my style. She wears it all the time and it's gorgeous on her. 

The three colors I chose are Stain, November, and Frick'n Frack. Stain is an Ultra Glossy Lippie, so it's slightly less pigmented. I love it for the transition to fall because it's easy to wear but still darker and purple-y for fall vibes. Layered on top of the other two products it looks great as well. My favorite one to layer it on is November. November is almost a Barbie pink, so it's definitely a look. I cannot describe how it looks layered with Stain, but it's kind of a dark coral and I love it! The last lippie is called Frick'n Frack. It's very similar to November in the tube, but on my lips, it's a lot darker. Frick'n Frack is a mauve that will also be amazing for fall on every occasion. November and Frick'n Frack are ultra matte lippies so they dry matte and last for the whole day, similar to the NYX Lingerie and Kylie Lip Kit which I compared here. ColourPop has exceeded my expectations so I will definitely be picking up more shades sometime soon! Thanks for reading! Stay tuned, xo Lauren.


{Stain Ultra Gloss Lip}


{November Ultra Matte Lip}


{Frick'n Frack Ultra Matte Lip}

Summer to Fall OOTD

September 19, 2016
     So, this Friday marks the first day of fall! Fall fashion is my favorite thing ever and I always finding myself wanting to wear sweaters and boots the day the season begins, but when the weather stays in the 80s well into October, it's not possible. Instead, I slowly transition into fall fashion by mixing my favorite summer pieces with some autumnal accents. This top works well for this look because of the mustard color. The color is versatile, so it can be worn with shorts and wedges during the summer yet also with boots and a cardigan come fall. The off-the-shoulder trend, as many of you know, was my go-to in the summer, and I love wearing it in this in-between season as it's not too warm for the temperature. My jeans are brand new from Urban Outfitters and I didn't get any good pictures of my shoes, but I was wearing my favorite new suede booties that I wore on Montreal Day 3. Unfortunately, I can't find my top online; I got it from a Francesca's outlet a few weeks back, but I'll link some alternatives below.
     As always, thank you so much for reading! Leave a comment below letting me know how you transition from summer to fall. Stay tuned, xo Lauren.



Top (similar options 1, 2)     Jeans     Booties
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bh Cosmetics Carli Bybel Palette

September 12, 2016
     If you don't know who Carli Bybel is, look her up on YouTube right now (or after you read this post). I've recently become a big fan of her, not just because of her style and beauty, but also her lifestyle as far as faith and being vegan. When I found out she was releasing a palette I looked it up online and fell in love. I added it to my wishlist, and a few weeks later my brother got it for me for my birthday (thanks, Nigel)!


     I've been using this palette 2-3 mornings a week, and I love the way it looks. It's extremely versatile and can be used to create a new number of looks. Some of my favorite shadows in this palette are shade 2 from the top row and shades 1, 2, 3, and 4 in the bottom row. The inclusion of the four highlights is super unique to me because none of my other palettes have that. I've gotten into highlight a bit because of this palette, and my go to is the third shade.


     Concerning the product itself, I feel like you're getting a lot for the price. At $14, the palette is a nice size with lots of good quality product. It also comes with a mirror, as well as a clear plastic cover that is attached to the palette so it won't fall out. I like the white and silver coloring of the palette, it makes the shades pop and so far it hasn't gotten dirty. The palette itself isn't as durable as the Naked palette, it's more of a waxy cardboard like the Lorac Unzipped palette. But, for the price, I can't complain.


     I think this palette is a must-buy for beauty lovers who like natural or smoky looks. Once again, the palette is extremely versatile and would be great for travel. Thanks for reading. Stay tuned, xo Lauren.

Agenda Organization - Erin Condren Life Planner

September 5, 2016
I'm back today to share my annual agenda organization post! You may remember my Kate Spade one's from last year and the year before, and if you've been reading this blog for a really long time you may remember my Lilly Pulitzer agenda from freshman year. Maintaining organization in my agenda is super important to me during the school year, it's the only way I can keep track of all of my extracurriculars, internship events, appointments, homework, and this year, student government.
Early this year, I found out about the planner community through Elle Fowler, and even though I still had a Kate Spade at that time, I was intrigued by it and wanted to join. I watched a lot of Plan With Me videos on YouTube, and in June when the new Erin Condren Life Planners came out I place an order. All the planner's I've ever had have been horizontal, and it was one thing I never liked so I chose the vertical layout. I designed my cover with the honeycomb pattern because I'm obsessed with bees right now, and I chose the white and grey to remain neutral so I wouldn't get tired by my cover throughout the year.

In July, I bought tons of stickers to help decorate my planner, it was fun and I didn't have tons going on. Now that the school year has started, I still enjoy decorating my planner but I don't use half as many stickers as I did two months ago. I know that stickers sound a bit immature for 17 year old, but once you dive into it, it's much for reasonable than it sounds. I also quickly realized that buying stickers weekly was an unnecessary expense and they didn't exactly fit my needs, so a few weeks ago I bought glossy sticker paper and started printing my own.

 A run down of how I use my planner: each week I have a checklist of what I want/need to get done for that week, as well as a checklist for homework assignments each day, as well as a checklist on Sunday for things I need to get done the next week. I also use the sidebar to track chores, such as when it's my week to clean the kitchen, what book I'm reading, and how much money I spend. The weekday headers read "stud gov" for student government, "homework", and "little things" which I used to track my meals, tv shows, deliveries, packages etc. This system works for me because it's visually appealing was well as perfectly functional. I use the monthly view to keep track of long-term assignments, as well as events or appointments that happen in the future. I also use it to write down birthdays and important things happening that month.
As mentioned in my July favorites, my Erin Condren Life Planner has become one of my favorite things. I'm absolutely obsessed with it and I think everyone should have one! Thanks for reading. Leave a comment letting me know what planner you are using this year. Stay tuned, xo Lauren.

Senior Year

August 28, 2016


Tomorrow will be my last first day of school (except for college, but you know what I mean). It's my first day of senior year, and while I couldn't be more excited, it's also nostalgic. I cannot believe that I've been going to school for 12 years; I still have the excitement for the first day that I've had since 2nd grade. Each first day of school is like the first page of a new chapter in my life. I know this chapter will be full of fun new experiences, like skip day, a prank, and pictures; while it'll also be scattered with stress and sadness from college applications and my last memories living at home with my family. I love the comfort of my home and my family, but I am ready to branch out and experience life without my parents, so I'm soaking up as much time with them as I can in the next year. The first day of school sets the tone for the rest of the year, so I can't wait to walk into school tomorrow with positive energy and excitement. Thanks for reading. Leave a comment letting me know what grade you are going into! Stay tuned, xo Lauren.
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The Best (Vegan) Waffles

August 21, 2016
Today's post was originally going to be a smoothie bowl recipe that I'm obsessed with. I've had it 2x this week, and I even went to the store to get strawberries, kiwi, and banana's to make it looks super cute. Alas, some people weren't meant to cook (or even make smoothies for that matter), because while it tasted great, the texture was off and it looked disgusting. While I was struggling to make a basic smoothie, my sister was behind me making waffles. My sister, Olivia, isn't vegan, but she's been making vegan recipes lately so that I can eat them too (she's pretty cool like that). Her vegan waffles looked way better than my soupy smoothie, so I switched gears and started photographing those instead. I even let her use the fruit I bought to top it. 

As far as the waffles, they are the best ones I've ever had. Let me be clear, not the best vegan waffles I've ever had, but the best waffles I've ever had. They are fluffy and airy and from what I can tell, not at all hard to make. I prefer my waffles with fruit instead of syrup, I don't need that much sugar in the morning; but as you can see in one of the photos, Olivia likes both (I had to run an errand and she picked up the camera to continue shooting photos...once again she's pretty cool). Strawberries are my favorite waffle topping, but blueberries and cherries are also delicious. Olivia also makes a delicious pumpkin spice pancake/waffle in the fall, so leave a comment below and I'll try to convince her to make some and let me photograph them! Thanks for reading, make sure you check out the recipe below. Stay tuned, xo Lauren.








print recipe

The Best (Vegan) Waffles
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups vanilla almond milk
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
Instructions
1. Whisk almond milk and apple cider vinegar in a large bowl. Set it aside.2. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, and salt.3. Add the canola oil and maple syrup into the almond milk mixture and stir.4. Mix the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients into a smooth batter.5. Pour 1/3 cup into the waffle iron, and cook until ready.6. Enjoy with fresh fruit and/or syrup.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 waffles

Coker Arboretum

August 14, 2016
It's been a while since I just went and shot some photos, so I dragged my sister out to Coker Arboretum on UNC campus, a location I've been wanting to shoot at for a while. My outfit isn't anything super special, but I really like the uniquity of the black trim found in this basic white tee shirt from Garage. I got this top in Montreal because I've found that I need more basic and "easy-to-wear" items of clothing for back to school. The jeans that I'm wearing are my favorite from Revice Denim, that I wear all the time. 

What's most exciting is my new shoes. I ordered these Adidas Campus' from Urban Outfitters back in June, and they were back ordered so I just got them in the mail. I haven't owned grey shoes since my New Balance's back in elementary school (I was obsessed with those too) and I'm ready to switch it up. Adidas' are a huge trend right now, and I think these are the best way to ride the trend while not having the same shoes as everyone else (ie. the superstars). Thanks for reading & stay tuned, xo Lauren.









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Pür Cosmetics Volume Vixen 4-in-1 Mascara

August 8, 2016
It was time for me to try a new mascara, so when I was in Montreal I ventured into a pharmacy and picked out this one from Pür Cosmetics. Of course, the company is cruelty-free, which is one of my biggest factors in beauty products.


I love that the mascara is "powered by keratin" because keratin is so good for hair and hopefully will help my eyelashes grow since they are super short! Since I have short lashes, I need a mascara that elongates them, which this one definitely does.  The mascara itself is thicker than others I've used and it helps with making my lashes look thicker and fuller.  It's become one of my favorite products, and it works well enough that I can put on just this mascara and chapstick, and I still look good on days that I don't want to wear a full face of makeup.

Thanks for reading, I'll see you back here next week! Stay tuned, xoxo Lauren.

Eating and Shopping | Montreal, Quebec, Canada

August 1, 2016
Yesterday was our last day in Montreal! Even though we only had 3 days, we did so much that it felt like a week! We didn't do as much today, nevertheless, I'm going to share my day with you.
We woke up super late to recover from Montreal Day 2, and we had a late lunch at L'Avenue. The wait was about an hour long, but it was so worth it! I had an amazing, but huge veggie burrito and strawberry mango juice. From there we went to the Museum of Fine Arts because I really wanted to see the Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit. I thought the exhibit was great because it showed his most famous work, as well as sketches and rough drafts. I also looked at the modern art collection to see Picasso and Monet.
From there we went shopping at Rue Ste. Catherine O, where I got a top from Garage Clothing some beauty bits from Pharma Prix. We walked in and out of a bunch of stores like Urban Outfitters, Brandy Melville, and Steve Madden. From there we went to dinner at Burger Bar, which was another hit. All of their burgers can easily be made vegan by substituting the beef with a black bean patty, so I did exactly that. For dessert, the rest of my family went to a cafe next door for macarons. 

We're back in the hotel room now, and I'm typing this post of quickly before going to bed. Thanks for reading my Montreal trip recap, and don't forget to read day 1 and day 2. Xoxo, Lauren.

July Favorites

July 31, 2016

This month's favorites post is a bit late and I'm so sorry about that! I overestimated the amount of time I would have to do blog posts while on vacation, and I'm literally typing this on my phone while waiting for the valet to bring the car so we can go to breakfast! 

Style
Steve Madden Nylie Bootie: I got these boots from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale because I wanted a pair of taupe booties, but also to wear in Montreal. They've been perfect for walking around the city because they're cute and easy to wear while being comfortable throughout the day as well. I wore them on Montreal Day 1 for the whole day, and they didn't start hurting until after dinner.

Beauty
Sun Bum Sunscreen SPF 30: Most major sunscreen brands test on animals, but Sun Bum doesn't so I bought a bottle before I went to the beach and it worked.



Food
Fruitocracy Squeezable Fruit Pouches: I got these as a joke when my mom told me to go grocery shopping, but I actually love them! It's great sweet treat as well as a way to get my fruits in if I'm lacking them that day.

Chronic Taco: My sister had been raving about this place non-stop, so I eventually made her take me. I loved it and ended up going back the next day. They have options for vegans and non-vegans, so it's easy to take my friends with me as well.

Other
Erin Condren Life Planner: I was SO excited to order this planner when it came out I was on the site all day trying to customize and order my agenda for this year. I'm doing a full post on it soon, so stay tuned for that!

Books: I really enjoyed The Husband's Secret, which I ended up doing a whole post on this book which you can find here. I also liked Flowers for Algernon, which I'm not going to do a post on, but I think is definitely a must-read.

That's all for my favorites this month. Let me know what your favorites are in the comments! Stay tuned, xo Lauren.

Osheaga | Montreal, Quebec, Canada


I'm sitting in bed this morning trying to get this post done before we head out for breakfast. I'm super exhausted as we didn't get back to the hotel until 1AM this morning, but I think once I get food I'll be much better. Osheaga was a blast, and I'm so grateful I got to go and experience it.

Once again we woke up early to leave from Mt. Tremblant, except this time we had to pack up all of our stuff to move to a hotel in Montreal. We didn't eat breakfast at the hotel, this time, so instead we opted for a popular restaurant across from our new hotel. Le Cartet was 100% worth the 40-minute wait. There were limited options for me as a vegan, but I enjoyed my baguette with jam and fresh fruit.


From there we left directly to Osheaga, which was located about 15 minutes away at Parc Jean Drapeau. It took about 20 minutes to actually get into the park due to bag checks and the incredibly long line. When we were in, we lapped the park once before stopping for our first activity. The wifi in there was terrible, which was unexpected, but it wasn't hard to find hotspots in the park. We went to the H&M tent where we got flash tattoos, bandanas, and an 180-degree photo/gif of my sister and I.
From there we went to out first show which was Logic. The vibe for that sure was super weird but cool, as there was a bunch of drunk guys that were super excited for his music and singing along. From there we went straight to Post Malone who my sister was most excited to see. He didn't sing White Iverson until the end, but we were the closest to the stage for his performance! After that, we bolted to Bastille, who I was most excited to see. He played Good Grief as well as new songs that the audience had never heard and closed the show with Pompeii. By then it was 7:30PM and we hadn't eaten in 5hrs, so we found food for me at a vegetarian station while my sister & mom opted for fish & chips. I, on the other hand, enjoyed tempeh tacos and a vegan brownie.

After that, we chilled for about an hour at one of the wifi stations, and we checked social media, posted photos, etc. Then we headed to our last show, which was Lana del Rey. I was so excited to see her in concert, because although she isn't one of my favorite artists, I feel like the opportunity to see her perform does not come often. Once she sang Summertime Sadness, it was almost 11PM, so we headed out on that note. The drive home took over an hour when it should have taken 10 minutes, due the traffic caused by everyone leaving the festival. 

I think everyone should go to a music festival at least once in their life for the experience. Granted, if you get annoyed easily or are bothered by people that are under the influence (and I don't mean just alcohol), it definitely isn't for you. That also goes for if you are a more modest person, my sister and I dressed for a festival, but not scandalously at all, but I saw more skin on men and women than I've ever seen before. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for tomorrow, xoxo Lauren.

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