Monday, November 16, 2015

Pumpkin Bread

Homemade Pumpkin Bread with Fresh Pumpkin |

Happy Monday, y'all! Last week, I made my last and final jokes about the humongous pumpkin sitting on the concrete next to the front of my friend's apartment door. It had been sitting there for weeks and it was honestly an eye sore. It looked a lost pumpkin. We finally decided we would commit to cutting into it and making a few loafs of pumpkin bread. We altered this recipe by substituting grated pumpkin for two and a half cups of freshly made pumpkin puree and white sugar for brown, cutting down the sweetness by half, and making a few additions like chocolate chips, pecans, and a few dashes of nutmeg. I happily ate a slice thinking about all the other yummy breads I want to make once school lets out in a few weeks. Any ideas from you baking enthusiasts out there?

Sunday, November 8, 2015

October Favorites

Last month was full of ups and downs. I did lots of fun things such as go to ACL Music Fest, hang out with old and new friends, and even go back to pole fitness again, but I also had the most amount of stressful days in a month than I've ever had before. It gave me the opportunity to reflect on the things that I needed to improve such as finding new places to do productive studying and doing laundry more often. :P I'm looking forward to November because of Thanksgiving break and my last round of midterms! Here are some things that I loved in October:

skin care favorites
{nighttime skin favorites: CeraVe cream WITH A PUMP, Nivea balm, Caudalie serum, Liz Earle makeup remover}
homemade pizza
{homemade pizza at girls night in}
fuzzy bath and body works socks
{wearing fuzzy socks to sleep because its's getting chilly!}
marmite vegemite
{my go-to spread for breakfast; best on whole wheat toast or  a toasted english muffin}

Friday, October 30, 2015

SRD's "Fall-O-Ween Festival"

Scottish Rite Dormitory Austin Texas
{fun friends}

Hello, all! Yesterday, the sweet people at my home SRD put on a fun event for us to celebrate the fall season and its festivities. SRD prides itself in making living away from home as enjoyable as it can be and events like these definitely remind me that dorm life can't be topped by any other place. Out of all the events held throughout the year, it's hard to pick a favorite - but this one is definitely in my top three. :)

I only spent about an hour outside, but it was the best way to decompress from the week of studying (a.k.a. basically living in the petroleum engineering building the whole week) for my upcoming test that evening. We had some delicious food, carnival games, a pumpkin painting station, lots of photo ops, and more that I am so excited to show you because all of these things are just so Pinterest-worthy, it makes me want to host my own event like this in the future. :) Here are some photos below:

Scottish Rite Dormitory Austin Texas, frito pie in a bag
{yummy eats excluding the desserts like diy s'mores, highlight of the day: frito pie in a bag}
flash tattoos
{flash tattoo station}
fall photo shoot set up Scottish Rite Dormitory Austin Texas
{fall photo op station}

pumpkin decorating
{mini pumpkin decorating}
Scottish Rite Dormitory Austin Texas
{sweet neighbors playing inflatable twister}
mini pumpkin decorating
{my mini pumpkin. isn't it cute?!}

It's hard to believe how gorgeous the weather for the carnival was because of how dreary it is now. This week, I am extra thankful that I live around such sweet people and that I'm more than taken care of here in college. I hope all of you have a great weekend! For those of you in Austin, stay dry!

P.S. In past years, I typically upload a monthly favorites blog post at the end of each month. That blog post will be a little bit delayed. It will be up by next week!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Belated Birthday Paddleboarding

Hi, friends! I had quite the fun and eventful week. Because I didn't have any exams these last few days, I took advantage of my time away from studying for exams by going to ACL Music Festival on Sunday, having an awesome girls night in on Thursday, and taking a belated birthday paddleboarding trip yesterday on Town Lake with my roommate and sweet neighbors from last year. 

paddleboard experience review austin
{best neighbors/roommate!}

Let me explain. These three girls were so nice to send me gifts through the mail on my birthday in July. In the box, I got a handmade "redeemable for paddleboarding/kayaking trip" coupon with them anytime I wanted and we were all available. It's been stuck on my wall with washi tape since I moved in so I'm so happy we all were able to get together to go yesterday.

stand up paddleboarding austin
{view of the city}

We left at around 9:45 am so by then, it was already quite hot since the sun was out. It was a short drive to the lake and even though we had a little trouble finding parking, we were able to find a place in walkable distance. We signed a waiver, payed the Friday-Sunday weekend fee, and got a quick lesson on how to paddleboard after we got our life jackets, paddles, and boards. This was my first time ever to go paddleboarding so I was nervous about how I would stand up on the board without falling into the water.

stand up paddleboard austin reviews
{the girls in front}

The only trouble I had with paddleboarding was figuring out how to turn around, but once my roommate showed me how, it was no issue at all. Also, I realized I kept tensing up my feet so I had to take kneeling breaks or else my feet would fall asleep. But overall, the whole process was easier than I expected. I had a blast! It was so peaceful on the water and I loved the views of the trees and the city of Austin. 

stand up paddleboard austin review
{taking a quick sitting break}

I am so excited to go again as a nice break from studying. Thank you to these girls for the birthday paddleboarding extravaganza. It was worth it - even if I had to rush to class in these clothes and swimsuit. :) I hope all of you have a great weekend and do something fun outdoors!

Friday, October 9, 2015

How to Store Skincare Samples

If you know me, then you know I love trying out new skincare products. I have quite the collection of these foil tear sample packets of cleansers, moisturizers, serums, and sunscreen...a whole lot of sunscreen.

I've been very hesitant to open up any new ones because I couldn't find a practical way to store them while I was using them. I find that a typical skincare sample packet will last me more than one day. It takes more than a few days - even a few weeks - to see if a product really works for me so it didn't seem right throwing them away after only one use.

I find that storing them in contact lens cases is the best solution to keep them from drying and collecting bacteria. I have plenty of them in a cabinet at home since I go through contact solution so quickly.

Here, I ripped open the top and squeezed out the product into one of the compartments, but I recommend snipping off a corner of the packet to make squeezing out the product easier.

Washi tape is the easiest way to label and date the samples I'm currently using because it's easy to write on and remove. Using tape also allows me to reuse the case after I'm finished testing out the product.

The one thing I would recommend is to buy little cosmetic spatulas or cotton swabs to use the product so you are not introducing bacteria in the samples by dipping your finger. I hope this little tip is helpful if you have sample products and extra contact cases laying around. Have a great weekend!