june makeup must-haves + effortless summer dress

I hope everyone is having a great week so far! It has been rainy here in Alabama, but thankfully that has cooled things down a bit! At the beginning of quarantine, I was seriously judging everyone who was wearing makeup and anything other than stretchy pants while they were confined to their own home. But now I have become one of those people! In order for me to be productive, I have to get up and get ready as if I am physically going into work or I won’t feel like doing anything all day. Quickly, I found that doing my full-face routine was just too much, so I adapted my routine to a simplified and more summer-friendly look.

The past month I have been trying out some new makeup products and I am excited to share these with you because I think they are a must to add to your makeup bag! I always love drugstore products —they have come such a long way since I was a diving into the world of cosmetics as a kid. Unfortunately for my bank account, I go through phases where I am also really into higher-end products. This was one of those times, but I am so glad that I splurged because these products are worth it! All of these products are linked so you can purchase directly.

Make Up Forever Blurring Powder Foundation – This stuff is a game changer! Easy and quick application with great coverage for everyday that is buildable. This can also be used as a powder to set your makeup! If I do a light foundation or just some concealer, I swirl a powder brush in this product and then set it. The shade finder on Sephora makes it easy to find the right shade for your skin and undertones — I use the shade Ivory.

Fenty Beauty Freestyle Bronzer – This is my first Fenty Beauty product and will definitely not be my last! The quality of this product gets 5+ stars easily. There is a great shade range in this product. I purchased the color “Amber,” which is a contour shade. It is the perfect cool contour for fair skin and I wish I had found it sooner. I use this e.l.f. brush to apply some product under my cheekbones, around my forehead, sides of nose, and jawline. Even if you aren’t doing a full glam face, just blending some of this product in will give you an effortless pulled together look!

Benefit Cosmetics Gold Rush Blush – I LOVE this blush. It is a perfect blend of a warm and glowy peach shade that makes you look perfectly flushed and summer ready! Highly recommend because you can skip highlighter with this product since it has a bit of shimmer in it.

Tarte Sea Breezy Cream Bronzer – Waterproof and buildable, a bronzer that applies effortlessly. It really gives you a just got back from the beach glow! I stipple a little of this over my blush and around the forehead to warm up my face.

Keep reading to get the outfit details!

Breezy Summer Dress

This effortlessly chic and flowy dress is a must buy! You can wear this around the house working from home, for a fun summer dinner date, or while running errands. It is so versatile and I need it in more colors!

Earrings: Kathryn Stallworth Designs | Hat: Amazon

Headed to the beach later this week and I can’t wait to relax and let my brain reset. Talk to y’all again soon!

you grow girl

Shortly after moving into my childhood home (my parent’s old house) that I have started calling the “boho blue bungalow,” I decided I wanted to embrace more of the “plant lady” aesthetic. I had a few house plants already that were doing well and when quarantine started I needed a new hobby, so I thought I would add to my collection!

Now that I have a screened-in porch, I wanted to transform it into a lush oasis area where I could sit and relax. Although I am not quite done yet, I LOVE what I have thus far! Almost all of these plants are air-purifying plants, which NASA studied and revealed they are effective at removing chemicals from the air like formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene, xylene, toluene, and ammonia.

The first step was finding these amazing rattan chairs. I had been eyeing some for so long on the internet, but since they typically go for around $1k per chair, I had decided to settle for something else. But then one day after I had given up on stalking the Facebook marketplace, these babies appeared. The owner wanted $300 for the set and I almost fainted!! I messaged her right away and picked them up a few days later. They are so classic and surprisingly so comfy! After that, the vision for the rest of the area fell into place. Like I said, I am still working on completing the remainder of the porch and will definitely update y’all when I do!

I love to wake up and bring my coffee out here while I watch my sweet pup, Finn play (he decided he wanted to make his blog debut this week) before I get started on my work day. I also look forward to coming out in the evenings when the string lights add a little ambience and watch the lightning bugs buzzing around my backyard while I read a few chapters of my current book.

I love houseplants for so many reasons. They’re an inexpensive, pretty way to add vibrancy and life to any space. They are cheerful and brighten up any living area and they can make a room feel more “finished” than it had before. Plants can also be useful for cooking and medicine (peep my aloe plant)! Even if you have a not-so-green thumb, there are plenty of no-fuss houseplants that can work for you! The Boston fern pictured above is so low-maintenance and she loves the shade, so if you are new to the plant scene, I highly recommend giving those a try. I have also been trying my hand at in-ground plants outside and a small container herb garden that I will show you all in the coming weeks.

I never understood how rewarding planting and gardening could be. It is absolutely amazing the sense of peace and joy my little outdoor space gives me. It has also taught me a lot about patience and given me the opportunity to devote my time to something meaningful instead of scrolling on social media in all of my free time.

If you are interested in adding some greenery to your space, I highly recommend devoting some time to researching on the internet. You will learn so much and find plants you didn’t even know existed! I had no plant knowledge until I started this project a few months ago and thankfully Google could provide me with free info! There are also some really innovative companies that deliver plants to your door and they will curate collections based on your wants/needs! You can see some of those here. Just a quick note that not all plants are safe for your furry friends! Please make sure you don’t put any plants within their reach that could be toxic to them.

I hope you enjoyed this post, I can’t wait to share more of my home projects with you!


Outfit details – Lounge pants/joggers, Aerie Henley tank, Wireless bralette

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takin’ it easy

takin’ it easy

Between work from home life and post-operative recovery, I haven’t worn pants that actually button in quiteeee some time. Raise your hand if you don’t even want to think about putting jeans on again.

Even though I have had surgery for my endometriosis previously, I scoured the web for tips and tricks for my second recovery. I wanted to feel as prepared as possible! Honestly I thought I was overbuying and wouldn’t use half of the stuff I had packed away in my bag. But I was wrong! Today, I am going to cover some must have necessities for tackling the tough days (and weeks) after surgery so you can take it easy!

  1. Ice packs: I had three in rotation! I used my largest one the most but I do recommend buying them in various sizes if you can so you can target specific areas when needed.
  2. Pillow & blanket from home: Nothing is as comforting as having your own pillow and blanket when you wake up for recovery. If you are recovering at home, this won’t be a problem. But if you are traveling out of state, make sure to put these items on your packing list! Also, using a pillow over your stomach on the car ride from the hospital is crucial to lessen the pain of all the bumps along the way.
  3. Hard candies: The breathing tube from being under anesthesia will really give you a dry, scratchy, terrible throat. I was under longer than I anticipated and whew my throat felt terrible when I woke up! Thankfully I had some mints in my bag and they helped so much! The IceBreaker sours are my personal favorites!
  4. Mesh/high waisted undies: These are not that fashionable. Okay, they aren’t fashionable at all. But, they are necessary. You will not want to wear normal undies due to your incisions and these are comfortable and will not cut into your skin! Trust me, you need them (and you might just continue to wear them after you recover)!
  5. Pajama dresses/oversized shirts: PJ dresses, oversized t-shirts, whatever they’re called, you NEED them – as long as it isn’t pants! I’m linking one a girlfriend sent me from Target, but I also found a few at Walmart for less than $10. I would also recommend a comfy robe to throw over your lazy pjs if you have anyone over to visit or just to make yourself feel more put together in general!
  6. Loose fitting sweats/joggers: Since I did eventually have to travel several hours home, I had to find pants that wouldn’t be uncomfortable on the ride but would also let me look put together when we had to stop along the way. Highly recommend the ones I linked here!!
  7. Baby wipes: You can use these for a multitude of things, obviously! But I kept them bedside to wipe my hands before/after eating, to take quick “baths” when I didn’t have the strength to shower, etc… You get the idea!
  8. Notepad/Pen: I gave a notepad & pen to my dad to write down notes from my nurse in recovery because I knew I wouldn’t remember anything. I also used it to write down when I took medications so I knew when to take the next dosage
  9. Slippers or another slide on shoe: You’re going to need a comfortable shoe that you don’t have to put effort into when putting them on. I wore mine to the hospital (no one will judge you, I promise).
  10. Socks with grip on the bottom: When you get to the hospital and have to give all of your personal belongings up (including your glasses when you’re as blind as me), it is nice to have one thing that is yours. I wore my own socks with grips on the bottom, but they will give you some if you forget them! Also, if you are required to stay in the hospital after surgery, they require you to wear something with grip on it!
  11. Abdominal binder: I had never heard of one of these and there is no way I could have worn this the week after surgery, but it has been nice to have it as I am moving around more!
  12. Heating pad: For the love, don’t put this on/near your incisions. But for back pain and shoulder pain from the gas, you will be glad you have a heating pad nearby.
  13. Books: I got tired of watching television and it was nice to have the time to fully commit time to read. I recommend reading & watching Little Fires Everywhere!
  14. Large cup or water bottle: Pictured below is a huge cup I picked up at Target for $10. Works just as well a Yeti without spending all the coins!
  15. Small basket: I used this small basket from the Target dollar section to keep everything I needed together and close to me so I wouldn’t have to get up so much. I put my medications, the tv remote, lotion, you name it!

Additional small luxuries to have:

  1. Wedge pillow: This thing was so great to lean on in bed since it was painful to be completely flat. You can also use it to prop your feet up. I can’t get enough of it!
  2. Sheet face masks: It was nice to be able to pamper myself a bit to lift my spirits. There’s no mess involved in these, just apply to your face for 20+ minutes then toss in the trash!
  3. Lip balm: My lips always feel so dry after anesthesia and it was an additional little luxury to have on-hand.
  4. Silk scrunchies/hair ties: I have been wearing my hair up so much since I haven’t the ability to do much with my hair (including washing it). These are comfortable and lessen the damage to your hair caused by normal ponytail holders.

Things you need that no one wants to talk about

  1. GasX/Phillips Milk of Magnesia/Miralax/ Senokot S (Actually all of the above)
  2. Vaseline
  3. Peri Bottle (listen you can literally use one of those reusable condiment bottles. I promise it works just as good as the $15 name brand ones)
  4. Flushable wipes
  5. Overnight pads: Try these HoneyPot ones! Once you try them, you will never go back to normal pads again!

If you’re preparing for surgery or just coming out of one, I wish you the best! You are stronger than you could ever imagine and you can get through this! Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with questions, I am happy to help!

strong, but exhausted

It has (unfortunately) been a few months since I sat down to write. It was completely unintentional.

I’ve honestly just been too tired to devote my time to my small corner of the internet. It sounds like a very lame excuse, but my body and mind have been too tired to do much of anything outside of my day-to-day responsibilities.

My endometriosis has flared back up even though I had surgery a little over a year ago. It has been back with a vengeance and my symptoms continue to affect my day-to-day life. I feel out of touch with my body, I get nauseous to the point of vomiting at least once a week, and I am exceptionally tired more often than not. I feel like I am constantly cancelling plans and trying to explain to friends what’s going on. I always feel like I’m bringing everyone down when I do push myself to follow through with plans even though I am feeling bad.

Late last year I realized how terrified I was of not being able to live my life and goals to the fullest because of my health. I needed to pursue other options and I started seeking doctors out-of-state. This can be especially scary because we all know surgery in general can be expensive much less possibly going to someone outside of your insurance’s network and all the other associated costs with traveling to seek treatment.

After some thorough research, I realized how uneducated and naive I had been when it came to my first surgery and the things my then doctor told me. I soon concluded I would need an excision surgery next. The previous surgery essentially cauterized any small areas my doctor could find. This can cause many issues, but as endometriosis grows back, it grows over that burnt scar tissue, making it even more painful. Excision cuts out the endo and any other tissue under/around it that could be effected by it. Alabama actually has no endometriosis excision specialists. It feels like we are always behind.

So my next best option was a well-reviewed surgeon in Chattanooga, Tennessee! His next available appointment was a whopping five months away. While I wanted to just give up because that wait seemed unbearable, I planned a much needed birthday celebration trip around the appointment and it ended being such a wonderful time. Chattanooga is modern and progressive, but not quite as crowded as somewhere like Atlanta or Nashville. I can’t wait to be back for a multitude of reasons!

The number one reason is my scheduled surgery for May. Because this is a more intrusive procedure, I feel like I should be more nervous or fearful. But I have so much hope for a better quality of living that I can’t be anything but excited.

While I was there, I was able to visit Beast + Barrel (pictured above), a rustic-chic gastropub where I had one of the best charcuterie boards ever. I highly recommend a meal (or two there) if you are in the area.

I hope my continued chronic illness journey inspires someone else to keep pushing for a well-lived and enjoyable life. If you don’t have any type of chronic illness and you know someone with one, try to learn more about that person and what their day-to-day life is like. Just because you can’t see their illness, doesn’t make what they are going through any less than.

I will continue to keep you updated on this journey and share some fabulous outfits along the way! Keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I prepare for surgery and the recovery.

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the burden is not light

The girl in the pictures above looks happy, light, and care free. But it has taken quite some time to feel comfortable in who she is, flaws and all.

Talking about mental health and working through those issues is hard. But discussing it in the south, seems even harder.

Almost two years ago I realized my anxiety was something I couldn’t control on my own anymore. No matter how much I tried to remove stressors from my life, practice self-care, or pray about it, I just couldn’t do it on my own.

I was worrying over minute details. I was always exhausted, but couldn’t seem to find any rest in my body or my mind. Concentrating on tasks at work was hard. I became irritable over the strangest things and would allow these moods to ruin my day because they were controlling my life.

I finally decided to do something about this and sought medical help for a prescription. While it took some trial and error with different medications and took my body some time to adjust, it improved my day-to-day life tremendously. I could finally function again.

But oddly enough, I felt embarrassed I needed help. I felt ashamed every morning I pulled my little green pills out to take one. I grew up learning people who sought assistance with something like anxiety or depression basically just needed to toughen up and pray about it.

Many will say, “Oh God is just testing you, He never gives more than you can handle!” or “Your mental illness is a punishment for sinning.” I prayed and pleaded with God for so long. I felt as if something were wrong with me or I was doing something wrong and that is why I couldn’t shake the feeling of anxiety constantly overwhelming me. So why wasn’t God “fixing” me?

The prevailing culture of silence along with misguided attitudes and erroneous expectations often cause suffering believers to feel shamed, blamed and very unsupported. *raises hand*

It look me quite some time. But I finally became PROUD of myself for taking the initiative to do something. Through this journey, I have even found a therapist I love (who I should definitely visit more often.) I know some people laugh that I pay money to express my thoughts and concerns with a “stranger” every few weeks. But whew it is money well spent!

I encounter this stigma around mental health often living in the south. The idea that the disruptions in our brains can be simply solved with prayer. I have to pause and say that my faith is very strong and real and I believe in the healing powers of Jesus. But He also created modern medicine and the will and sense to utilize these resources. We get confused when we think we can’t take a prescription because it would mean we don’t trust God enough.

So friends if you are going through it or have been there before, please know you are not alone. I am so proud to see how progressive the mental health movement has become and the openness a lot of my friends and I have about needing a little extra “help.” Let’s continue that momentum and encourage others to take care of their mental health in whatever capacity they need.