Ever seen that Parks and Recreation episode where Tom and Donna spend a day treating themselves to whatever they want? I have always wanted to do that, but I do not have the budget to cause that kind of damage to my bank account. Instead, I took a $20 bill with me and spent it on a wide variety of things that would grant me the perfect evening at home. Today, I will share with you the wonderful goods that I got, all totaling to under $20.
Here is everything that I got! I was looking for a nice meal at home as something that I do not usually eat, something to spice up a bath, and a face mask. I was very surprised when I was able to find almost all of these things in one store, and at how cheap everything was.
Some of my favorite things to get every once in a while are the $1 Arizona Iced Teas, because they are so cheap. But at Walgreens, they were having a 2 for $1 sale and I could not say no. It was a good way to try a new flavor and still get a favorite for the same price.
The main reason I went to Walgreens was that I was in search of the new Soap and Glory products. I wanted to try some of their scents without committing to a body wash or lotion, so when I saw the bath bombs 2 for $8 sale, I was down. I tried the original scent that night and not only did it smell amazing, but the bomb had the perfect amount of sparkle in it, I was surprised to see that if left my bath sparkly, but it wasn't an overload of sparkle on my skin after which was amazing.
The one thing about Walgreens was that I was having a really hard time trying to find the face masks. I do not know if I just kept missing them, but they did not seem to have any when I went. I did grab these one minute masks because the idea of self-heating intrigued and also frightened me. How it works is that the mixture combined with water reacts and heats up while on your face. After one minute of massaging it in, rinsing it off left my skin cool and tingly. I was impressed with how clean my skin felt without leaving on the mask for very long.
And lastly, because I couldn't find any at Walgreens, I stopped at my local grocery store to grab some $1 Kraft Mac and Cheese. Eaten on a rare occasion, I grab this when I am too cheap to eat out, but too lazy to cook. It is a great treat yo self meal.
And that is everything I got with my $20! It kept me entertained and feeling great for an evening that I deserve, and is something within my budget that I could definetely do again! This idea works great on your own, a night in with friends, a date night, etc.
With Pumpkin Spice out the door, the new flavor of winter has entered businesses everywhere. As early as November, this flavor entered drinks in Starbucks and products in Trader Joe's. Being one of my absolute flavor combinations growing up as a child, every year I purchase every chocolate peppermint treat that comes in sight. Here is the collection that I found over the years (of both chocolate peppermint and candy cane), and continue to get on an annual basis.
Candy Cane Tic Tacs
This first one may be a little bit of a stretch with the chocolate peppermint flavor, but if you just had chocolate and then popped one of these, it's the same thing. These Candy Cane Tic Tacs are super cute and better than the original flavors of tic tacs, maybe because of the cute candy cane on each one.
Candy Cane Chill Blizzard
DQ may not seem like the place to go in December, but it is this year. One of the two seasonal treats they have this winter, their Candy Cane Chill Blizzard features hearty chunks of both chocolate and candy cane. The combination was minty delicious, and I loved seeing the ice cream turn pink as I was eating it. I would love to see how it tastes if I got it mixed with chocolate ice cream instead, if that would overpower the mint entirely or not. Overall, definitely a fan favorite from me.
Candy Cane Tootsie Pop
Now these lollipops are one of the reasons that I have loved the flavor of chocolate peppermint throughout my childhood. I used to have these lollipops about once a year, and I always thought it was the coolest thing because it was like an easier to eat candy cane, with a tootsie roll in the middle. The combination of a chocolate tootsie roll and mint may sound weird, but it created lasting memories during my childhood years.
Peppermint Bark is something that some families make home-made every year as tradition, but the closest that I've gotten are these Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark Squares. The perfect combination of white chocolate, dark chocolate, and peppermint creates this wintry treat a great after-palate and dessert all in one.
Peppermint/Candy Cane Tea
These pics are also a little off the chocolate peppermint theme, but they are some of my favorites. These peppermint teas from Trader Joe's appeared just in time for the holiday season, and their combination of the minty goodness and other flavors adds some spice to my daily mint tea.
Peppermint Hot Chocolate
Although this flavor is typically ordered as the "Peppermint Mocha", for those non-coffee people out there who still love chocolate peppermint, the Peppermint Hot Chocolate is my favorite drink that Starbucks offers during the year hands-down. It is only around as long as the Peppermint Mocha is, so you better get it while the flavor is still in stores.
Peppermint Flavored Ice Cream Cones
My absolute favorite on the list are these "Hold the Cone" miniature ice cream cones from Trader Joe's. Originally released as a plain vanilla with a chocolate coating, Trader Joe's has since expanded this line of products to feature holiday editions this year. This Peppermint Ice Cream coated in chocolate with a chocolate cone is the winter edition, featured after the fall creation of pumpkin ice cream with white sugar coating and a ginger cone. The new flavors are a good treat to add to the freezer, and make a perfect on the go snack.
(Not Pictured) Candy Cane Joe Joe's
Trader Joe's take on Oreo's has taken a spin this winter with their Candy Cane Joe Joe's. The regular frosting was mixed with bits of candy cane, creating a minty crunch when combined with the chocolate cookie. They make a great watching tv and accidentally eat a whole sleeve snack.
White Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps
Last on the list are these white chocolate peppermint pretzel crisps that I could probably eat the whole bag of in one sitting. Having always been a pretzel lover, finding pretzel crisps was a dream come true, only to later find out that they made some covered in chocolate, and even peppermint in winter time. Thus, a combination of my 3 favorite flavors was made: salty, sweet, and minty. The combination may sound like a lot, but they balance each other perfectly, making this the best snack of the winter season.
That concludes my list of favorite chocolate peppermint items. I hope that this list gives you some inspiration to add a little flavor to your holiday season. I also make a lot of my own peppermint/chocolate items at home, such as candy cane ice cream (you can find the recipe and step by step instructions with pictures here), and chocolate cookies dipped in peppermint. My suggestion is to research some of your favorite recipes but replace the traditional flavor with chocolate or peppermint, or go shopping and see what you can find! If you find a chocolate peppermint product that was not featured in this post, take a picture of it and tag me on social media, I would love to try it out! I hope that you have a fantastic week.
Happy Sunday! I hope that the long weekend was spent doing things you love: spending time with family and friends, shopping, eating, etc. One of the things I did this weekend was get together my advent calendars counting down to Christmas this December. Every year as a kid, I found myself looking forward to opening a pocket in my chocolate advent calendar, and seeing the more holes in my calendar, meaning the closer it was until Christmas. Over the years, I got a little bored of the plastic-y tasting chocolate and wanted to try something new, so today I am going to show you a couple different ways to count down to Christmas, including all different price ranges and accessibility. I hope you enjoy!
$0.99 - Basic Chocolate Calendar
This chocolate advent calendar may look like any other, but the design on this was especially fun. It looks like a board game, and it leads you through all 24 days leading up to Christmas with little directions on each day. It is very inexpensive, and a fun way to keep track of the days!
~$6 - Fancy Chocolate Advent Calendars
The Trader Joe's Grown Up Advent Calendar is an example of a fancier chocolate option for a countdown, that is still on a cheaper price side. The 6 flavors that included in the box are Fireworks, Orange Tea Hibiscus, Sea Salt Milk Chocolate, Black Salt Caramel, Coconut Caramel, and Ginger Caramel. You can peek inside and see that they are quite large truffles in all different shapes and sizes. A classier, but still keeping the same chocolate tradition that one does as a child. You are never to old to have a chocolate advent calendar!
$52 - L'Occitane Advent Calendar
L'Occitane's design for their beauty advent calendar was adorable. The bow that tied it all up, and the drawings covering the front and inside of the box make it look like a traditional advent calendar with a little twist. Their calendars are filled with 24 travel sized samples of their products, adding up to over an $100 value. If you want to try out a beauty companies products without buying products full size, this is a great idea, because it is an easy way to try out a lot of what the company has to offer, and at the same time, count down to Christmas! I am excited to see what favorites I find in this box. A lot of other beauty companies do the same thing, and are in a wide range of prices. They release new ones every year, so you can try a new company each Christmas!
$55 - The Body Shop Advent Calendar
Another beauty advent calendar that I purchased this year around the same price range, was the Body Shop calendar. This one offered a different variety of the products received, including a variety of beauty products, gloves, and body and skin care products. It is larger than the L'Occitane one, so I am excited to see which one has more overall value.
$ ? - Tree Advent Calendar
I have had this wooden tree and ornament advent calendar since I was a little kid, and I still do it every year to date, even though it is the same thing every year. A purchase such as this, depending on the quality, can be on the pricier side, but it is an advent calendar that can be used every year. Each day, you take an ornament out of the appropriate box and put it on the tree, and should end on the 24th with a full tree. It is a cute way to count down the days, and it can create great memories in doing so.
Free - Make your own!
Some other advent calendars I have tried over the years were on the more creative side. One of my favorites is taking miniature stockings with the days of the month on them, and filling them with small gifts such as a piece of candy, ornament to hang on the tree, or a small craft or puzzle. Another idea is to have a smaller tree with smaller gifts under it, that could be items that you already own but haven't seen in a while, or products/things you have always wanted to try. You can also do advent calendars with/for others, where you create a gift scavenger hunt, or prepare a different treat in bags for your pet every day, etc.
Advent calendars can be any price range, but what makes them special is the memory of creating and completing them! By doing an advent calendar every year, it creates a tradition with family, friends, your dog, or just yourself! I hope that the holiday season is going well, let me know if you have any advent calendar traditions in the comments below. Have a fantastic week
It may have been fall for a while, but it's only starting to feel like it now. The change of color in leaves, warm apple cider, and sweaters signal the beginning of fall to me, and I immediately start checking off the yearly fall bucket list. Today, I thought I'd share with you some of my favorite activities to do in the fall!
Bucket List Ideas
With who, where, and when?
All of these activities can be done by yourself for a "me" day, or rather with friends or family. I would plan who you do your bucket list with based on your schedule, so that way you are fitting in as much as you possibly can. For example, if you know you have a family day coming up, suggest going apple picking together. Or if all your friends are out of town, pick up those needles and knit with some apple cider in front of the fire. The goal of a fall bucket list is to incorporate fun, season themed activities in your regular week day schedule, and this is the sole reason why fall is my favorite season, and can be yours too.
Now It is time to get out there and create your own! Use the above examples, and add your own favorite things to do in fall, whether it relates to the season or not. If you create a bucket list of your own, share it with me on social media, I'd love to see what you come up with! I hope you have a fantastic week.
Happy Sunday! I hope you are having a great summer so far. The heat in many places can seem deadly. and sometimes even be deadly. That is why it is essential to stay hydrated, wear sunscreen, and do other things to protect your body from the heat. Here are some tips and information on how to keep yourself safe in summer.
1. Stay Hydrated
One of the easiest things to do by accident in summer is dehydrate yourself. It is often hard to remember to drink water throughout the day, and if you forget a water bottle you are often left stranded with nothing to drink. It is important to stay hydrated because it offers many health benefits, including healthy skin, hair, and increased mental health. It can prevent headaches and help with weight loss. To keep myself hydrated, I keep water bottles in every shape and form so that I always have one with me. Cups, big ones, small ones, foldable ones for bags, etc. I especially love the bottles with markings on them to motivate you to drink the regulatory 8 glasses a day. There are also helpful apps such as Waterlogged that help you keep track of what you drink in a day, water or not, and helps you set goals.
2. Sun Protection
The sun may be one of the reasons summer is so awesome, but is only good in limited amounts. Sunglasses, sunscreen, and other forms of protection are essential to keeping your body healthy. Burning is very bad for your skin, and can also lead to health problems later in life. It is important to wear sunscreen on all parts of your body, lips and eyes included. I always wear lip balm with spf on days I will be spending outside, and make sure I have a pair of sunglasses in every bag. Hats are also very helpful to protect your scalp and forehead from getting burned.
3. Water Protection
We spend a lot more time in and around water during the summer, usually without realizing the effects it has on hair and skin. Excessive trips to the beach, showering, and water in general can lead to our body being stripped of its natural oils too often. It is important to limit your water usage if you know you will be using it a lot. For example, if you are spending the week at the beach, alternate days getting your hair wet to avoid it getting a straw-like texture. It is also important in regular day routines to not wash your hair every day. If you do not do much activity/sweating, let your hair rest for a day so you are not constantly stripping it of its natural oils. You will find your hair a lot softer and won't have to use as much conditioner.
Those are all the tips that I have for you involving sun and water! I hope that you found this post helpful. I didn't know most of these things on my first few summer trips, and they are some helpful tricks I learned along the way that help me keep my body healthy throughout the hot summer months. Let me know in the comments below if you have any summer tips that you have learned over the years. Have a fantastic week!
When you are a teenager, summer's can easily be filled with work, volunteering, or school preparation, leaving no time to do other activities. Every summer, I make a bucket list with everything I want to do, eat, try, etc. over the summer, but I never end up doing over half of them. Below, I have included some tips with how to make yourself some time this summer to try something new, along with some ideas to put on your summer bucket list. Enjoy!
Bucket List Ideas
Managing time for it!
One of the easiest ways to make time is to plan ahead. If you create a planner for everything you have in the next week, it is a lot easier to see empty spots or times that you can fill with summer bucket list activities.
Another way to get more time in is to set aside set time for yourself. Before planning out your summer schedule, double check what you have time for so that you don't overbook yourself before the summer has even started.
The reason a lot of people believe that they don't have any time for a summer bucket list is because the time not spent working is used for sleeping because of how tiring work was. Scheduling a short nap during the day and making sure that you receive 8 hours of sleep a night will prevent you from feeling run down during the day, which will give you more energy to do an activity from the summer bucket list.
The next step is to go out and create a summer bucket list of your own! It can be made together with friends or family, or can be a personal summer bucket list with goals that you want to reach over the summer. By creating and following a bucket list, you will feel more fulfilled at the end of summer, and maybe a little bit more ready to get back to the routine of work or the school year. Let me know in the comments below if you have ever made a summer bucket list or have any tips that you want to share. Have a great week!
Happy April! I hope you are had a great weekend, and didn't get too caught up in all of the April Fool's jokes. I often find that at this time of the year, routine can become a little boring, and it is harder to find each and every day unique and fun. That is why, for the month of April, I want to try and do one thing everyday to keep the whole month interesting. Don't let the April Showers get to you!
There you go! I hope this blog post brings you some inspiration to either create your own list of things to do this month, or follow what I have here. It can make every day just a little bit more interesting and worth looking forward to. Have a fantastic week!
Happy Sunday! I have taken a break from posting in the past few weeks because I have been so busy. I apologize for not being able to post as regularly, but it gave me a great idea to write a post covering what I have learned recently about managing time. I hope that it helps if you are dealing with a busy schedule, either on a regular day basis, or from time to time.
This is something that I have only started to discover and use recently, but planning can help you keep your chill during the times when you are busy. I keep both an agenda at school for homework, and one at home where I write all my activities for the week. Writing out how your week is going to look keeps you prepared and ready for whats about to happen. Although it may not make things less busy, knowing what you have in advance creates less surprise activities during the week.
2. Set Reminders
Reminders can be distinct, specific things that you have to cover on a certain day, or they can be as simple as "Bed time in 15 minutes". What is important is that they do a little of the brain work for you. When we are busy, our minds tend to forget other important things, and focus on what we are doing, which can lead to a lack of self care. Setting reminders makes sure that you are still thinking of these things, and are often a great help in remember all the things you need to do.
3. Take a Break
Things can get very hectic, very quickly when you are busy, and sometimes you need to prioritize. Tell yourself that it is okay to take a break, because over stressing yourself will just lead to a crash later. Skipping tutoring or cardio class for one week to take a well deserved nap is not a bad thing. Self care comes before any other activity that may seem more important or necessary. It is always important to keep a steady relationship with friends and family also, and sometimes a small break can keep you ahead in the long run.
4. "Me time"
Different than just a break, "me time" is something that one can plan throughout their daily schedule. It can include things like reading, coloring, a bath, listening to music, meditation, or other relaxing things one does by themselves. It is very important to maintain this because even a small amount of time spent caring for oneself can keep you much healthier, especially mentally. Finding an escape from a busy schedule can be even more refreshing than a nap.
When it all narrows down, sometimes we just have too many things on our plate. What's important is to recognize when you are going over your limit, and to take away things that are causing you to be unhappy or unhealthy. Although society may pressure you to do anything and everything, it is okay to pick and choose what is important to you. Keeping a balanced life in which you are happy in is the most essential factor when being successful.
I sincerely hope that this article gave you some inspiration or helped you if you are struggling with being busy. I think that this spring I am going to try and focus in on writing more wordy posts, and thinking less about having to include photos with every single post. That way, I can focus more on creating one aspect of the blog even better, the writing :) Have a great, stress free week!
Hello, I am back! Although it may not be Sunday, I have a new post for you. I wish I could've posted it sooner, but my SD card was having issues and I couldn't get any photos onto my computer. Anyways, since it is a little too late for January favorites, here are some of my favorite items from the last 2 months.
One of the things that I wanted to pick up this year was bullet journalism, although I didn't think I would have the time or commitment to keep it consistent. That is why I got this planner, which gives you the option to add your own pages into to it, make it your own, but still has the regulated, printed weekly schedules. I have found it so much easier to keep track of my week, especially areas and certain goals I want to focus on.
Winter Candy Apple Body Mist
I love Bath & Body Works, especially their winter scents. I also love all the mini versions they have in their stores, so that you can give a scent a try before you commit. This mini candy apple perfume smells amazing, and I have been loving it for the winter months, because it is different than my regular floral scent.
After my most recent trip to Canada, I purchased these chocolate biscuits at the local food store. My family ate the whole box within 24 hours, so I went back a purchased a few more. They are the perfect combination of chocolate and buttery biscuit, which satisfies any cookie craving.
The most recent (but not really new) book by Rainbow Rowell, Carry On is about a wizarding world that is a little different than the usual fantasy. It follows many different perspectives through romance, adventure, and mystery. I would highly recommend to anyone who loves fantasy, romance, epecially if you have read any other Rainbow Rowell books.
This little light is from Flying Tiger, and it is one of the cutest book accessories I have ever found. It reminds me of the light from Pixar animations, and the bottom comes off so you can clip it on to whatever you are reading. Perfect for dark nights or car rides, I will be using this light often.
Lastly, I got this ukulele recently, because I wanted to try out a new instrument. It is super easy to learn, and very easy to practice regularly, because it is portable. It also an easy way to play many different popular songs. I highly suggest trying it out if you want to learn a musical instrument because ukuleles are cheap, and very easy to learn with! There are plenty of videos and apps to help learn too.
Those are some of my favorite things from the past two months! I hope you enjoyed getting a peak at what I have been loving recently. What are some of your favorite things from January and February? Let me know in the comments below. Have a great week!
Hello! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend, and that you got to spend it with the people you love. Finishing off the lovely weekend with family, I took a trip to a Christmas Tree Farm to chop down a fresh-scented pine for the house. I took my camera on the journey and wanted to share a few tips and pics. Enjoy!
To start off, I had to wear an ugly Christmas sweater to the farm. Luckily, I have one that has Christmas trees on it, which perfectly sets the mood. I also paired it with a white beanie to keep warm and cozy.
It was a lovely day, but very cold outside, so tip #1 would be to bring some hot chocolate with you! Extra points if you bring a snack, such as warm cookies, with you also. They give you energy to go cut down trees, and will also keep you very warm.
A lot of farms carry different kinds of trees, so make sure to check beforehand, whether via phone or on their website, because certain trees appeal more than others. The traditional tree which most people relate to when they think of Christmas trees are Douglas firs. They are tall, cone shaped and have soft needles. The kind pictured above are Norway Spruce, which tend to be wider with spread apart branches and thick needles.
This is a Douglas fir. They can grow really tall, and often look smaller than they actually are in the fields. Therefore, make sure to measure the space for your tree, both height and diameter, before heading off to a farm. This makes sure the tree neither is too big or too small for the area you want it to fit. Lastly, make sure to have fun! Go with family or friends and make a day out of it, because it really gets you a jump start into the Christmas season. And if there is no tree farms near you, or they are too expensive, having a decorating party. I highly recommend either getting some evergreen scented sticks or candles if you have a fake tree, because it makes it seem just like the real thing.
That concludes my Christmas Tree Farm post, I hope that it helped if you plan on getting a real tree for the first time, or needed the inspiration to try it. The event can become an amazing tradition for family, and it's an active way to get outside and do something with others, even in cold weather. Have a fantastic week!
A seventeen-year-old fashion obsessed girl, who stands just under 5 feet tall.