out with the old…

2013 – You were supremely better than 2012. You were packed full of excitement, trips and moments that made my heart feel like it was going to burst with joy! While I wait for the clock to tick down to Christmas and a new year (and new possibilities), let’s revisit the best moments of 2013.

  • Visiting Gwendolyn in Athens, GA! Athens is such a cool place and any time I can utter the phrase, “I’m a sushi-filled blob” is a good memory in my book!
  • The infamous Geico Hump Day commercial!
  • Buying a pair of white Converse All Stars – best. purchase. ever.
  • Reading the Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Yes, it’s a young adult book. Yes, it’s sappy. Yes, it made me bawl my eyes out. I can’t wait for the movie!
  • 23 things for my 23rd birthday – I’ve accomplished 9 of the 23. I’ve still got 2 months, right?!
  • Moving!!
  • Seeing John Mayer in concert!
  • Carrying the RDU Baton.
  • Chopping my hair off! Here’s to it growing out quickly in 2014.
  • iPhone 5, baby!
  • My sister getting married. AKA getting the best big brother ever!
  • Meeting the boyfriend…#swoon
  • Discovering the amazing concoction known as a venti Iced White Mocha
  • Making a zombie survival kit
  • Visiting Sarah in Charlottesville
  • Getting promoted!
  • Painting the handsome Mr. Hunter for a Christmas present


I have a confession to make: I am terrible at being a girl. Absolutely horrifying. I’m lazy when it comes to make-up. I don’t like to shop unless I have a purpose (or if I’m going to Target). I don’t know how to use a curling iron. The reasons are endless.

However, with my intentions post, I am vowing to at least give it a little more effort. With that in mind, I scoured the interwebs for the perfect eyeshadow palette. I’ve been using the same Clinique liquid eyeshadow combo for years now and I’m sure they discontinued the shades that I like.

In my stumbling, I came across the Urban Decay Naked3 palette. Ooh lala, it’s gorgeous! Unfortunately, it is out of stock on the website and it hasn’t made its way to retailers like Ulta or Sephora yet. So the only option was to spend $125 for it on Amazon.


Instead, I saw where Ulta sold the Urban Decay Basics palette and I added it to my cart as I was purchasing some shampoo that’s promises to make my hair grow faster. But then something amazing happened. I found an even better palette by a brand that I’m familiar with and really love – thebalm. It’s called Nude ‘tude and comes in “Nice” and “Naughty”, but both of them have the same palette. It has more shades and it was less than the Basic palette (on Amazon). So now the next step is to learn how to paint my face. Anyone willing to help? If not, I guess I’ll have to turn to the YouTube make-up gurus.



The boyfriend likes pad thai…at least that’s what he keeps telling me. I mean I’ve only seen him order it like twice in the past four months, but whatevs. Who am I to judge?

Being that he has an affinity for spicy noodles, I decided to make spicy thai noodles. Now I used that recipe as a guideline and I added chicken.

Photo Dec 09, 7 54 18 PM

The Line-Up:

  • Sesame Oil
  • Crushed, red pepper flakes
  • Honey
  • Soy sauce
  • Rice noodles
  • Chicken breasts

Step 1 – Cut up your chicken breast and cook it in a medium sized skillet on the stove. Or if you’re like me and didn’t decide to have chicken until an hour before dinner, defrost it for a good 30 minutes.

Step 2 – Bring water to a boil and boil your noodles. This was my first experience with rice noodles and I can’t say I’m an expert at it.

Step 3 – Heat sesame oil and red pepper flakes (1-2 tbsp to taste) over medium heat for about 4 minutes.

Step 4 – Strain the pepper flakes out of the oil and whisk equal parts honey and soy sauce into the oil. I used 2 tablespoons in my little batch, 3 tablespoons in boyfriend’s.

Step 5 – Mix sauce, noodles, and chicken together.



Mine was perfect – and I think Hunter was willing to do anything for a taste.


But I have the best intentions.

That statement right there causes a world of expectations, disappointment and chaos for me; a vicious cycle of self-inflicted ups and downs. I always build up these ideas in my head that I’ll be the best version of myself if I can make a super special gift for this person or buy that person’s lunch. I tell myself that if I cut out the junk food and the Dr. Peppers that I’ll be happier and healthier and then I’ll make the extra effort in the morning to put on make-up and jewelry. I vow that if I buy this thing that this person mentioned one time and give it to them that they’ll like me a little bit more. I swear I’ll respond to that text message a friend sent me two hours ago and make plans to see them. And before I know it, I’ve spread myself, my resources and my energy too thin. Or worse, I don’t even get to that part because I’ve overwhelmed myself with all this stuff my heart wants to do that I lay on the couch until I decide it’s time for bed.

It’s hard to explain, and I’m sure you’re rubbing your head and thinking, “What is she going on about now?”

That’s the thing. I have been winding myself up into this little ball of “good intentions” that I haven’t been able to see that I could avoid most of those feelings if I lived a little bit more on purpose (ahem, intentionally) and a little bit less out of habit.

Somewhere along this road I call life, I started telling myself that I’ll always be a little squishy around my middle because that’s just how I was built. Or I will always be walked all over because I’m small, quiet and young. Or I’ll never have time to do all the things I want to because no one has all of their dreams come true. And on and on it has gone until I accepted mediocrity. At some point, I made the decision to keep doing things because they’re comfortable and because that’s how I’ve always done it. But you see, I’ve always had the best intentions. I’ve always wanted to be that person who does random acts of kindness without recognition. I’ve always wanted to be the saver instead of the splurger. I’ve always wanted to be the kick-ass, strong, sparkly female character, but I never put plans behind those wants. I never made an intentional action to lead me in that direction.

So December brought with it, a sense of change. Now stay with me. Don’t write this off as a pre-New Year’s resolution. Instead, I’ve decided to stop with the resolutions, the do-overs and the “oh well”s. I’m better than that and the people I love deserve better than that. I’ve decided to start taking actions on purpose to mold my life instead of waiting in the wings or feeling like all the exciting things have already happened to me. I’m going to start taking better care of myself even if that means sacrificing a couple of hours of sleep in the mornings. I’m going to stop sacrificing my love of cooking for the convenience of Chinese take-out. I’m going to stop looking at junk food and Dr. Pepper as a reward for a long day or an incentive to go to class. I’m going to stop complaining about things I got myself into (for instance, class). I’m going to start making time with people meaningful instead of spending a couple of hours scrolling through my phone while in their presence. I’m going to start living intentionally and not just with the best intentions.

This is a tall order for anyone, and I know I’m going to fall victim to the voice in my head whispering, “You messed up, you might as well give up.” But I hope this all isn’t one big “but I had the best intentions” but rather a step towards taking my life off of auto-pilot and living intentionally.