Friday, July 18, 2014

Lilly Pulitzer 2014-2015 Jumbo Agenda Review

 All through high school, I was forced to use the plain, black and white daily planner that my school gave me. I could have bought my own, but everyone was pretty much expected to use the planners they gave us. So after 4 years of using a boring planner, I have finally upgraded to a Lilly Pulitzer Agenda, and I am SO EXCITED!

I first found out about the release of Lilly Pulitzer's new line of agendas from Dorothy's post on her blog Prep In Your Step. And after seeing all of the new designs and reading the reviews on last year's Lilly agendas, I knew I had to have one!

I ended up choosing the jumbo-sized agenda in the design Trippin and Sippin. And boy, choosing the design for my agenda among so many pretty ones was such a hard decison! I chose the jumbo size agenda to make sure that I'd be able to fit everything, especially since I have rather large handwriting and I'm sure that I'll have lots of stuff to write in it when college starts in the fall!

If you're wondering what the size of the jumbo agenda compares to, it's pretty much the size of your average notebook. It's about an inch thick, and it is a tad heavy for an agenda. But that's okay with me because I'll be caring it around with me in my backpack or bag, anyway.

So I thought I'd give you a little sneak peak inside the agenda if you haven't gotten one already, and share my opinions on it.

As I said before, I got my agenda in the print Trippin and Sippin. When I bought it online, I just thought there were the pink flowers and such on a navy background, and somehow didn't realize until I got it that there are seahorses and starfish on it, which make it even cuter in my opinion! The hardcover and spiral binding make it seem durable, and the pink strap I'm sure will help it stay closed when I have it in my bag.

On the inside cover, I wanted to personalize mine a little and put my monogram on there. I didn't really feel like buying a monogram sticker, so instead I made my own! All I did was print my monogram out in a cute font, cut around it with a specially-shaped scrapbooking sciessors, and stick it on with a piece of packaging tape. If you're wondering where the elephant sticker came from, it was my favorite sticker from the sticker sheet that comes with the agenda (more on the stickers in second).

The first "page" in the agenda is a page with a flap, sort of like a folder. I don't know what I'll stick in there yet, but I feel like it will come in handy!

Below is a little close up of the inside front cover.

And here's the sticker page!  I just love these cute little stickers. As you can probably see from the picture, I've already started using them!

Oh and here's the Christmas sticker I put together...the agenda came with the tiger and Santa Claus hat stickers separately, but I decided to put them together to make Christmas tiger. Cause why not, right? Who doesn't love a Christmas tiger?

Here are some of the front pages in the agenda. It includes some pictures of Lilly Pulitzer herself, the story behind the Lilly brand, a page to write in birthdays and anniversaries, a list of holidays, and a horoscope page.

 Next, before the monthly overviews and weekly calenders is a Lilly print for each month. I'll show you a few of my favorites:

Next after each monthly print is an overview of the month. Here's mine for August.

Then after the overview of the month is the calender by week. Here's a week in August. Dates and Holidays are printed in a pink cursive.

After all 18 months of the agenda are some pages of plain notebook paper. So far, I've used some of these pages to write down blog post ideas.

I also wanted to touch on the monthly tabs for a second. They're laminated, which makes them hard to bend or rip. This will hopefully make them durable, especially if my agenda is stuffed in my backpack.

 And there you have it. There's your little sneak peak of the new Lilly planner :)

Overall, I just love this planner! I didn't realize how popular the Lilly Agendas were until I bought my own. I had never seen anyone using them before until I came across Dorothy's post, but I initially thought that it was just because I'm from the Midwest. But I guess I was wrong because I've seen quite a few people I know buy a Lilly agenda recently. Anyway, August just can't come soon enough for me to start using it!!

Also, I just got a new laptop, and the picture editing program I used is a little new to me. So I apologize if the pictures above are a little blurry! I'll try to be better next time...

 Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Summer Nails + Slanted Tips Design

Painting my nails in fun, bright colors is just one of the many things that make me look forward to summer. As I've mentioned before, I usually post anything nail-related on my other blog, Dream It Up Nails, but today I thought I'd spice up this blog a little and add a nail post to it!

It's sort of a repost from my other blog, but I wanted to share with you one of my favorite nail designs that I did with some pretty polishes! 

My favorite nail design to do is slanted tips, which is just about the easiest design ever! I'm not so good at nail art, so if I can do this, you can too! I just did them free-handed, so you don't need to bother with any tools. All you need to do is use the handy dandy nail brush that came with the nail polish, and then lightly paint on the tips! 

In the picture above, that's what I was referring to when I was talking about fun, summery nail polish colors. I just love the bright mango color paired with the sparkly blue polish! It's perfect for summer! The polishes I used for it were OPI Where Did Suzi's Man-go? and the blue polish was China Glaze Seahorsin' Around.

This next slanted tips design was done using OPI Love.Angel.Music.Baby. (the sparkly gold) and OPI Hey Baby (pink). This mani isn't as bright and summery as the first one, but I think it's still pretty! You can probably tell that I really like pairing a sparkly polish with a solid color when doing this design!

Probably the most popular nail polish colors for summer are neons, and surprisingly, I haven't worn them too often yet. I probably should start wearing them more often while it's still summer!

Have you been liking any specific nail designs or polishes lately?

♥ Colleen

Monday, July 7, 2014

10 Things I Wish I Knew In High School

Now that it's already July, I thought I'd put together a little High School Series where I talk about my high school experience and give advice. I felt like this would be a nice way to clear my mind of everything high school before starting college! My hope is that someone in high school or just starting high school will find this series and benefit from it, or that I'll meet some other newbie college life bloggers like myself!

The first topic in my High School series that I wanted to talk about was the Top 10 Things I Wish I Knew In High School, especially in terms of the things I wish I knew during freshman and sophomore year. The following list contains 10 pieces of advice based on the things I wish I knew earlier in my high school career:

1. ALL four years matter. A common misconception in high school that a lot of people have is that they think that you don't have to try very hard freshman and sophomore year, and that grades don't really matter that first year of high school. However, that couldn't be any further from the truth. All four years of high school are important, especially in terms of applying to colleges. If you completely blow it freshman year like some people I know, it's really hard to come back from it. It's not impossible and I know things happen, but it's still really hard. Luckily, I did do well my freshman year, I just think I could have tried even harder, and I wish I knew that it would have helped me in the long run if I had put in a little more effort. 

2. Your past doesn't define you. Just because you had your weird middle school days (I'd like to forget mine), it doesn't mean you can't shape yourself differently in high school. You're allowed to be whoever you want to be, and high school gives you a new start. I wish I knew that I could be myself, and I wish I would have found my niche earlier in high school.

3. Make Sure to Choose Your Friends Wisely. This is definitely a biggie. My Mom always advised me to find nice friends because other people will associate me with the people I hang out with. Thankfully, I did find some good friends my freshman year, some of the same people who I'm still friends with now that I've graduated. But now that I'm done with high school, I've found that a couple of my "friends" weren't really my friends. I had sort of seen the writing on the wall near the start of my senior year about a couple of these girls, so the point is, I wish I choose some of my friends more wisely.

4. Don't worry so much about what other people think. To be honest, I still haven't mastered this one completely. But I have come a long way. I just wish that freshman year of high school, I wouldn't have cared what everyone thought of me so much. I think I would have been a lot happier if I didn't, and I wish I would have known that it's okay to be a little different. :)

5. It's best to branch out of your comfort zone. Activity wise, I used to be a competitive swimmer and I played in my school's orchestra both freshman and sophomore year. I didn't do any other clubs or activities because swimming and orchestra took up so much of my time. But when I had to quit swimming at the start of my junior year, I had a whole bunch of time on my hands, and I wish I would have joined a club earlier in my high school years. It's a lot easier that way, and if I branched out and joined a club or organization, I could have met so many more people! Socially, I think branching out of your comfort zone applies as well. It was so easy for me to just hang out with my circle of friends, and not have to approach anyone else. I wish I would have talked to more people in my classes, and people I didn't know very well. I could have had a broader circle of friends, and met people I normally wouldn't have! It's a good thing I learned this for junior year!

6. You'll change tremendously. I'm definitely not the same person I was 4 years ago, during freshman year of high school. I've changed so much, and thankfully for the better! I just wish that during freshman year, I wasn't so afraid of change. That it was okay and normal for change to happen, whether it be within my group of friends, or anything, really. 

7. You aren't defined by a number. This one is mostly in regards to junior year, but still applies to the rest of the high school years. I wish I knew that a number, like your GPA or ACT scores, doesn't define you as a person. I mean I knew this, but I would get so worked up about any slip in scores or a not-so-good grade on a homework assignment. I just wish I knew that if I tried my best, that was all I could do, and that I could always try harder to better myself the next time. 

8.  You'll win some and you'll lose some. Meaning: you won't be perfect all 4 years of high school, and that's okay. You're going to make some mistakes, and you're not going to be amazing at everything. You'll get recognition for some things you do, but not for everything. I think this is important for everyone to learn, and I wish I would have learned this sooner.

9. Look toward the future, but stay in the moment. After the initial appeal of high school during freshman year, there's bound to be things that you're bored with at your school, or things that don't really appeal to you anymore. This was the case with me, especially my senior year (aka senioritis). All throughout senior year, I feel like I was too busy counting down the days to graduation and finally being out of high school, that I forgot to stay in the moment. I wish I had more memories from my senior year, so my advice to anyone in high school right now is to make the most of your time in high school, because those 4 years will truly fly by. 

10. The best is yet to come. This is one of the biggest things I wish I knew in high school. It's okay if your high school experience isn't perfect. I know I haven't even gone off to college yet, but I just know that although I had a good high school experience, life after high school will be even better. I've been told this by multiple friends who are already in college, and I believe them. I can't wait for my college years!

And that is my 10 things I wish I knew earlier in high school. For any of you who have already finished high school, did I miss anything? Is there anything you'd like to add?

That's all for now,

♥ Colleen

Saturday, July 5, 2014

July Goals

I hope you all had a great 4th of July! Mine was good, and I was so glad to spend it with not only my immediate family, but my grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins! It was nice seeing them because in a little over a month, I'll be heading off to college and I won't be around as much.

I also marched in the parade which was a fun experience! I got a scholarship from a service group in my town, and they wanted me to join them in the parade. We ran out of candy to pass out after the first street we went down, so I'm sorry to all the kids near the end of the parade! :(

Anyway, now that the 4th of July has come and gone, I thought I'd share some of my goals for the month of July:

Spend more time with family.
College will be here before I know it, so I really want to try and spend more time with the people who have been there for me my whole life. Once I get to college, I won't be able to go home until winter break, so I'm going to make sure I set some time aside to hang out with my family!

Finish college shopping.
Oh my, I still have a long way to go with this one! All I've gotten so far is my bedding set (which comes with a comforter, sheets, pillow case, and sham) and a mattress pad. I still have loads of other things to buy, like a new laptop, printer, back-to-school clothes, and other dorm essentials, so hopefully I'll save myself some stress and finish most of my college shopping before August!

Start blogging again on Dream It Up Nails.
This is a biggie for me. I just past my 1-year of blogging mark on DIUN, and I feel TERRIBLE that I haven't blogged on there as much as I should/wanted to. In fact, I didn't blog on there the whole month of June. Granted, I did have my graduation, grad parties to go to, and I have been working a lot, but these aren't really excuses since I could have planned ahead and scheduled time in for new posts. I've also been on a no-buy for nail polish the past few months (since my Mom wants me to save money for college stuff and not spend it all on new nail polish collections), which hasn't helped me make new posts for DIUN, either. I guess that's another reason why I made this blog. Because on this blog, I can blog a lot more since it doesn't all have to be about nail polish. But I do really love doing my nails and the nail polish blog world, so I am planning out some posts for the month of July, and I will hopefully be back blogging on DIUN shortly. :)

Become a member of the Her Campus Blogger Network with this blog.
I'm already a Her Campus Blogger Network member with my other blog, DIUN, but I'd also like to be a HCBN member with this blog too. I just feel like HCBN has a lot of members who have lifestyle/college/beauty blogs, so I'd fit in better and maybe make some blogger friends if I joined in with this blog. I'll apply this month, so hopefully I'll get in!

Start working out again.
Ughhhhhh. All May, I kept telling myself to start working out again. You know, to look decent for summer. But of course it's now July, and I never did start working out. It's pretty sad too, since all I have to do is walk out my room, down the hall, and into the laundry room where there is a treadmill, workout bike, and weights. Like how more convenient can it get?? I'll have to develop a workout plan this month, and stick to it. It's probably easier said than done, I guess.

Go through my closet.
I have so many things I don't even wear anymore in my closet, so it would be a good idea to give some clothes away to people who need it. It would also be nice to clean out my closet to see what I still need to buy in terms of clothes for college!

Read a book.
 So far this summer, I haven't really had time to just relax. June was just crazy and hectic with graduation, grad parties, and the fact that I've been working a lot at my summer job. So in July, I hope to set aside some time for myself and just cuddle up with a good book! Any suggestions?

Do a "High School series" on this blog.
Now that I'm done with high school, I thought I'd do a "high school series" where I share advice, my thoughts on high school, and my experience with the college admissions process. My thought is that maybe someday, someone will find this advice series helpful, just like I wish I could have talked to someone about life in high school when I was an incoming freshman!

Spend time with High School friends.
It's not even college move-in time yet, and I've already learned that some of my "friends" in high school weren't really my friends. However, I'm still really close with some girls from high school who have been there for me from the start, so I definitely want to see these girls more over the summer before we go our separate ways when August comes around! It's going to be weird not seeing them everyday when college starts, but I know I want to keep in touch with them and make use of the rest of my summer by spending time with them!

Hopefully I'll accomplish all these goals by August! Thanks for reading and have a great rest of the day!

♥ Colleen

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

June Favorites: Rimmel London, Victoria's Secret, Beauty Products, & more!

Happy Tuesday everyone! I can't believe that it's already July...I mean, where did the month of June go??

Since it's the first day of July, I thought I would share with you some of my June favorites! These are the products and things that I used a lot in the month of June, and things that I've really liked or enjoyed. I'm going to start with my favorite beauty-related products and then go into some random favorites.

Rimmel London Scandaleyes Retro Glam Mascara
This mascara by Rimmel London has been one of my most-used mascaras this month. This was one of the products I was given to review from Influenster in the Spring Fling Voxbox, which I will reveal to you in a post tomorrow! I love the way this mascara doesn't clump, as well as the fact that it separates the individual lashes for a more "retro" look. 

Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship Leave-In Split End Protector
This product has honestly helped save my hair this past month. I teach swim lessons in the mornings and then go back in the late evening to teach more, so my hair has been exposed to chlorine way more than it should. By rubbing this product through my ends, it has helped save my hair from split ends caused by chlorine. I taught swim lessons last year, and by early July last year, my ends were already pretty split and starting to lighten from my normal hair color. That hasn't happened this year so far, and I think it has a lot to do with the help of this product!

OPI Nail Polish in Love.Angel.Music.Baby.
I wore a navy dress for my high school graduation in early June, and I thought that this polish would look great with it! I've literally worn this polish on my nails the entire month of June...from my graduation the first week of June, to today as I'm writing this (even though it's a little chipped now, haha). I just love this sparkly gold polish! It's from the January 2014 Gwen Stefani Collection, and if you'd like to see a review of this polish or another polish from this collection, feel free to click here and see it on my other blog, Dream It Up Nails! I guess while most people where neon nail polish during the summer, I where gold! ;)

Victoria's Secret Lotion in Aqua Kiss
This lotion has been one of my favorites for awhile now, but since my skin has gotten really dry after being in the pool so much this summer, this lotion has really come in handy. I usually find the scent of Victoria's Secret lotions to be a little overpowering, but this scent I've found to be just right. I think it smells really good, and it also moisturizes my skin very well. My only small complaint is that it is a little bit greasy. It's not as greasy as some lotions I have (and believe me, I have a ton of different lotions lying around), so it's not too bad in that respect.

This pair of Roxy Shoes
I seemed to have lost the shoe box for these shoes, so I don't know the exact title of them. I bought them at a store in the mall called Journey's, and I mostly bought them because not only were they kind of cute, but there were on sale for $25. At first I saw a pair of Sperry's that I liked, but a little voice in my head told me that I didn't really need to have them (aka spend a $100 dollars on them) so when I saw this pair of shoes and saw that they were on sale, I decided to buy them. They are cute, and I ended up wearing them at work a lot this month, as well as at the first day of my orientation. I also got a lot of compliments on them which is always nice!

 Aviator Sunglasses by Charlotte Russe
I actually bought these sunglasses a couple months ago when Charlotte Russe was having a sale on sunglasses, where each pair was $5. Even thought they're not very expensive sunglasses, I still really like them! I'm a big fan of aviators, and I just love the floral print on them! This might actually be an ongoing monthly favorite because I plan on wearing these aviators a lot throughout the rest of the summer!

And that's it for my favorites for June! What are some of your favorites for the month of June?

♥ Colleen