things that made my week

weekinpictures

it’s friday! who’s excited?! clearly, I am. keeping it short & sweet with a roundup of the things that made my week. have a good one!

minidish | the cutest mini ringΒ dish I’ve ever seen |jcrewboots| dreaming of these booties |makeupbrushesΒ | using this mug as a makeup brush holder. now if I could actually wash my brushes… |bitelipmask| the lip mask that saved my lips |kusmitea| the tea that helped soothe my poor stomach this past weekend |

happy weekend!

loving lately

loving lately

planner | watch (also here) | tote | clutches | cardigan

the things that are currently making me smile and brightening up my day:

one of my favorite things about the new year is buying a new planner, and this one is lovely, with beautiful typography and ample space to write everything I need to remember.

this watch was a Christmas present, and it is quite possibly the most beautiful watch I’ve ever seen. I love everything about it – the grey band, the clean face, the little second hand dial, the slim profile…I could go on & on. it’s everything I love aesthetically in a watch, which in my opinion is the ultimate accessory (I rarely go without one).

I’ve been wanting this tote for awhile but I’ve hesitated purchasing one because I wanted to make sure that I would really use it. so in the meantime, I used a gift card to purchase this tote (in black/cognac), which is of a similar size & look but at a much friendlier price point. the pleather is good quality, and the fact that it’s reversible is a plus. so far, I’ve been using it daily with the cognac side out & loving it, so I’ve made a note to look into upgrading to a leather version in the future.

the one downside to totes is because they’re often one single compartment, everything kind of gets lost & you find yourself digging through everything just to find the one thing you’re looking for. these clutches have put a stop to that. I have both the large (in seaglass) & small (in black) clarity clutch, as well as the privacy clutch in dove grey. they are a lifesaver, keeping everything easy to find and in place. I also love that they keep everything fairly compact because of the slim design. they are pricey, but the quality of the leather trim & plastic are excellent, and I made use of birthday & Christmas money as well as holiday discounts to lower the cost.

this cardigan is from forever21. can you believe it? I couldn’t. I haven’t shopped at forever21 in years because it’s a little overwhelming how much stuff there is inside, the product quality is hit or miss, and most of the things they offer are a little too young for me now or are just not my style. but I was drawn to the geometric pattern & colors of this cardigan, and when I touched it, I was pleasantly surprised to see that even though it’s 100% acrylic, the material was thick & nicely structured. I bought it, and I was impressed enough to check out their website when I got home. I found a lot of items that seem really nice and geared towards an older demographic, so I’ve made a note to check out forever21 periodically.

what have you been loving lately?

places I love | greer chicago

greer1 greer2photos from my instagram

I could spend hours in a stationery store. I love things that are beautiful both in form & function, and with stationery, that’s often the case. I love the feel of good quality paper – thick & crisp – and the feeling of writing with good quality pens – no dragging, just smooth & easy. I also love sending stationery, especially now that sending cards & notes through the mail is becoming more & more a thing of the past. it takes so much more time & effort to do it that way, so whenever I receive a card in the mail, I really take the time to read it & appreciate the message.

a friend of mine gave me a notebook for Christmas, and she mentioned that she had purchased it at greer & highly recommended me to check it out. I finally made my way over there last week (it’s on Wells just north of North Avenue for my fellow Chicagoans), and it did not disappoint. various stationery items were on tables, beautifully displayed. their selection is fantastic – so many of my favorite stationery brands were there (rifle paper & co., crane & co, snow & graham, sugar paper, kate spade) as well as other brands I hadn’t heard of before but was happy to get introduced to. the front room led to a little hallway that had an incredible collection of unique greeting cards for every occasion, and I took advantage of the opportunity to pick up some cards for birthdays & events coming up. I also picked up a bunch of these pens (photo above), which have quickly become a new favorite. I’m digging the extra fine point nib.

if you love stationery and beautiful gifts, I highly recommend you go & check it out!

cold weather essentials

cold weather essentials

even though there have been some (barely) above freezing temperatures around here lately, winter is well & truly here. with the change in weather comes a change in daily must-haves to combat the cold air & dry, dull skin.

hat | I have a giant head, so I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with hats: I love them in theory, but I hate the way they look on me. because of that, I went for years without wearing a hat, but last year, I finally found a beanie that looked sufficiently okay on my head, and I enjoyed having the added warmth on my head. sadly, I lost that beanie and searched high & low for a replacement. this one was the winner. it doesn’t hurt that it kills two birds with one stone: it keeps my ears & head warm and lets me rep my hometown in style.

intensive lotion | I never had any serious skin problems until this past summer when I had a case of eczema on my arms & legs. I went to a dermatologist and was prescribed some medication that ultimately took care of the problem, but I wanted something I could use daily to hydrate my skin and hopefully prevent more intense flare ups. I picked up this lotion after receiving a sample of the hand cream. it really sinks in and keeps my skin moisturized all day long. I apply once in the morning and again at night when I go to bed. it’s not greasy at all, and since it’s fragrance free & formulated specifically for dry, eczema-prone skin, it’s great for those with sensitive skin. I recommended it to my sister who has a much more serious eczema condition, and it worked wonders for her. I also picked this up from the same line to apply to intensely dry patches.

lip balms & scrubs | this time of year is when lip balms & scrubs really prove their worth. I have four products in heavy rotation. I use this to slough away dead skin. this is a great balm to layer under lipsticks – it’s fragrance free & absorbs really quickly. this is a tried & true favorite and my default lip balm for on the go. for overnight lip conditioning, this is great. I apply a thick layer right before I go to bed, and when I wake up in the morning, my lips are soft & happy.

what are your cold-weather essentials?

hello again

path

needless to say, it’s been awhile since I’ve come around these parts. the break came about organically. I didn’t plan or resolve to take one; I just did, for various reasons, the main one being that I needed to just get back to the basics and that meant letting go of all the extra for a little bit.

what have I been up to in my time away? well, for one thing, I finished a semester of classes, got straight As, and made the President’s list. I hope that doesn’t come off as bragging – I’m just really, really proud of my hard work, and I’m working on owning my successes just as much as my failures.

I’ve also remained full-time at my job. I have a new boss and all the changes that come with that are challenging, but I’m also excited for what’s to come for the community of people I work for and with.

on a more personal note, shortly before I took a break from blogging, I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder. coming from a culture and a background where mental health is somewhat of a taboo subject, I thought I would dread the diagnosis, but all I felt was relief. I felt validated. I felt understood. it was freeing to be able to know what exactly I’m dealing with and from that knowledge, feel like I had more agency to come to terms with what that meant. to be honest, I hesitated for just a second about sharing this here, but one of the things I’m working on is being honest with myself in all aspects of my life, and this is a part of me. it doesn’t define me, but it’s as much a part of me as my right hand. I will probably write more posts about what this has meant for me in more detail sometime in the future, in the hopes that sharing may be helpful to someone, somewhere. mental health is important, and I want to contribute towards stripping away the stigma around it in whatever little way I can.

the time away has been really great, and I have so many things I want to share & write about here. the blog has been revamped a little bit, with a new layout that’s more my style, new features & series, and its own domain. I also wanted to incorporate more topics & ideas here, so while there will always be some fashion & beauty posts, there will also be new posts on books, movies, current events, and a bunch of other things I’d like to touch on.

if you’re still around after such a long break, thank you, thank you, thank you! I hope the new year has been lovely so far for all of you, and I’m excited to be blogging again.

talk to you soon!

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