Mindfulness!

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Hello there! ♥

I hope your week went well, whoever is reading! Mine was nice; on a cool note, I have even more secondhand skirts I’ve been wearing. 🙂 My mom went through her old clothes, and she held aside some skirts she thought I’d want. They’re from the 1980’s, and I’m so in love with them!

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The little top is actually from Forever 21; it looks secondhand though, doesn’t it? 😉

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I’ve been in a choker mood, so my black velvet one worked out great with my matching velvet headband. Definitely gives the whole outfit an interesting look!

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Annnnnd, here is the worm statement ring I mentioned, what, maybe two blog posts ago??

I love worms. They’re cute!!! Thus, a worm statement ring was created. I really love how this ring turned out…note that the hearts are fuzzy! It’s such a fun, playful ring to add to an outfit.

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Here is the other secondhand skirt I was given – blue! ♥ Lucky for me, I had a light blue headband that matched perfectly with the ensemble. Light blue really is a pretty color!

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The most comfortable pair of shoes I own!!! I call these my ninja shoes, because they are so silent. They make no sound at all when I walk…it’s pretty cool!

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Overall, I felt really happy and confident in these two outfits! They’re my new favorites. I can’t believe how comfortable and soft the skirts are. ♥

 

Mindfulness…what is it?

So! Here’s a topic I’ve been really interested in lately! Mindfulness; essentially, it is being present and aware of the moment you’re in, to put it very simply. Most of us find our minds wandering into the past or the future, no? There are a ton of articles online about it, but here, I’ll just be simplifying it and describing how it helps me daily! 😀

There are many ways to practice being present, and here are the ones that help me:

  • Walking. I really don’t do this as much as I’d like to this time of year (it’s extremely hot where I live) but when I do go for walks, it’s the easiest way I am able to practice mindfulness. I may or may not be listening to music, but either way, I’m very attentive to my surroundings and being present. I notice squirrels, dogs, plants – basically, life all around.
  • Journaling. Ohhhhh boy, where would I be without a journal?! Journaling helps me sort through my thoughts and feelings, which I otherwise am not good at expressing verbally. Plus, the mindfulness comes in by focusing on the feeling of writing on paper. I find it soothing. I focus on writing each letter, which you can’t really experience typing on a computer.
  • Being still. Typically, I’ll do this technique when I sit in my backyard sometimes and just listen to the wind rustling through the leaves in the trees, or before work when I stop for coffee. I will just sit still and take in my surroundings. There is beauty in stillness; it’s like taking a moment to realize that you’re here, you’re breathing, and you’re alive.

I am writing this in Starbucks and Wham! just randomly started playing on the radio in the store. Now I am envisioning Zoolander, and orange mocha frappucinos.

Shoot; I’m getting distracted, aren’t I?

BACK TO THE POINT, mindfulness is a useful tool we can utilize daily to stay focused (which I’m clearly not doing right now), and to stay present in the exact moment we’re in. It’s very relaxing! I highly recommend trying it out, in some form. 🙂

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Last but not least, I wanted to share this neat photo I took the other night. Beautiful sky, but bad circumstances; a little over an hour or so away from the city I live in is the fiery Ferguson fire near Yosemite that’s been on the news, here in California. It’s definitely wildfire season…the other day, everything looked orange and the sun could barely be seen!

Until next time! See ya!

 

The Joys of Awkwardhood

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Howdaaaay!

I look dang proud of myself in that picture and it fits so perfectly with the blog post title! LOOOOOOOOOOOL!

This is meant to be a funny post, so I hope you enjoy. 😉

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First off, I bought a laptop keyboard cover! Isn’t it cute? ♥

Sometimes now, I’ll literally just sit and stare at my keyboard when I should actually be typing instead. It’s soooo pretty.

That kinda leads straight into the topic today! Do you ever feel awkward? Of course; I’m sure everyone does at some point. I can be rather awkward when it comes to holding conversations, or creeping people out when I  unintentionally stare at things/people! But I never let that stop me from trying. 🙂

I think it’s very true that when you get older (for some people), you lose a lot of the self-consciousness you once had in your younger years. Because now I seem to hold the awkwardness high and proudly like a big, waving flag in the wind…

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Just like C3PO at the pod race on Tatooine

I’m not sure what changed, but my self-consciousness really reduced over time. Of course, we will always have self-conscious moments, but now if I do something or say something that I feel is a bit awkward, I actually find it hilarious…and kind of fun, honestly.

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“Hey guys! Whoa, Big Gulps huh? Alright…welp, see ya later!”

Remember this scene from Dumb and Dumber?? I feel this is the best and most accurate depiction of some of my conversations with people. 😀 Hahaha!

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So to anyone who feels awkward, and sees it as a bad thing, I highly encourage you to roll around in it rather than try to hide it. Wear it like a cape, or a tiara…or both!

Hey, like my skirt? It’s another thrift find!

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This is a really fun skirt and I feel like I’ll wear it a lot! I don’t wear much blue so it’ll be fun to pair other colors with it. 😀

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And lastly, my daisy headband…which I don’t feel I wear as much as the others. I have made so many headbands, it’s nuts…

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EVIDENCE. I think I’ll take a loooong break from making any new headbands (don’t hold me to that, though) and instead I think I’ll make a new ring for myself. Not to put on Etsy, but one just for moi!

I think worms are really cute, so I’m going to make myself a cute worm statement ring. With hearts, in fact.

FUZZY hearts.

So yes, the worm ring is in the making (that sounds too much like ‘ring worm’ – YIKES!)

 

See ya next time!

Take a Picture

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“Awake on my airplaaaane, awake on my airplaaaane…”

Welcome back to the 90’s! My blog post title is very fitting for two reasons:

1) “Take a Picture” by Filter is a 90’s tune (one of my top favorite 90’s songs), and my outfit today was very 90’s!

2) I’m quite literally going to discuss pictures. My last blog post featured my favorite paintings that have always stuck with me; today I’ll feature my favorite photographs taken throughout history! ♥

Let’s get started!

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The skirt is a hand-me-down, and it was purchased in the 90’s (maybe early 90’s, I’d guess?) I paired it with a striped shirt for some daring pattern-mixing!!! Kinda Saved By the Bell-ish…

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I made the belt! 

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The headband is the new yellow rose one I made! Agggggghhhhhh, I love this outfit SO MUCH. The pattern-mixing was a bold move but hey! I loved it, and if we love what we wear, that’s all that matters! I felt super happy and confident in this ensemble today. 😀 ♥

 

“Could you take my picture…’cause I won’t remember…”

Now, under the umbrella of art, I really appreciate photography. It speaks volumes without a word needed to be said! It’s something I’ve always admired, and like artwork, photographs speak to me just as much.

I took a photography class in college…I was okay at it! It wasn’t my strongest skill, but I liked to admire other people’s photography.

These are my top favorite photography stills of all time! Unfortunately, I have no idea who took any of these photos, even after research.

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Ohhh boy, this photo has always stuck with me. The striking contrast of pure joy on the young girl’s face amidst the crowd of women is powerful. If I had to guess, I’d think this is one of Steve McCurry’s work (who is famous for taking photographs in Afghanistan, and most notably his portrait of ‘Afghan Girl’).

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An East German soldier passing a flower through the Berlin Wall before it was torn down, 1989.

This photo is actually hanging on my wall in my room! I love the feeling of peace and unity that it evokes, in my opinion. ♥

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A young private waits on the beach during the Marine landing at Da Nang, 1965.

A photo that really sticks out to me from the Vietnam War.

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Titanic Disaster – Newspaper boy, 1912.

This was the first picture that made me interested in photography as a child. I read everything about the Titanic when I was a kid and I’ve always remembered this photo. ♥

Yeeeeeah! This wraps up my featured ‘favorite art/photography’ series, I guess! Haha, it was fun to share! 😀 Hope you enjoyed.

See you next time!

 

In Living Color

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Hello and welcome!!! ♥

Today I wanted to do an outfit post and talk about art…not my art, though! Sit back and I hope you enjoy. 🙂

I wore this outfit yesterday, on Friday. I decided to be all super colorful and this is a new headband I recently made!

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Love the choker as a finishing touch!!! Subtle enough to coordinate perfectly with the colorful headband. You know me; I love chokers.

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All in all, I give the headband a THUMBS UP. It’ll go great with a neutral-toned outfit that needs a pop of color. I’m sure I will be wearing this one a lot.

Moving along to the topic of art!!! Towards the end of this past week, I started thinking about art that really stuck out in my memory back when I was studying it in college. I had to take many, many art history classes so, I was fortunate to learn about artwork from the caveman days to present.

Renaissance art has always been one of my top favorites. There’s just something ethereally beautiful and almost otherworldly about it.

Thursday evening I sat with my laptop, sipping Starbucks coffee and perusing the vast ocean that is Google image search. I was trying to find my favorite artwork from the time period, which took a while because I didn’t know the names, only photographic memory. Typing things like ‘Renaissance unicorn art’ and ‘Renaissance portrait of a lady‘ sounds like too broad of terms to successfully find them, but it turns out, I found them all!

So just for fun, I’d like to share my favorite art from this time period:

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Portrait of Giovanna Tornabuoni (1488). Domenico Ghirlandaio. (This one is my absolute favorite!!!) 

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Margaret of Austria (1490). Jean Hey.

I love how you can tell her gown is velvet. The texture captured here is remarkable.

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The Lady and the Unicorn. One of six tapestries, circa 1500.

I actually had a T-shirt when I was in 5th or 6th grade that had The Lady and the Unicorn screenprinted on it.

Renaissance art definitely brings me a sense of inner peace whenever I look at it. Do you have a certain artwork or time period of art that is your favorite?

Hope you enjoyed reading! See ya! ♥

 

Bubbles

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Hey! 🙂

So, I have always wanted a green dress. ALWAYS!!! My little wish came true recently when I found this little number at Forever 21. I modified the length, and voilà!

It is the exact shade of green I have always wanted in a dress. Green is a color I really like in particular shades, and this is one of them!

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It’s very lightweight and perfect for a casual summer look. Doesn’t hot pink and green go perfectly together?? ♥

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On a more serious note though, today I wore this dress to my brother-in-law’s Celebration of Life memorial service. It was a very beautiful event. ♥  It was amazing and heartfelt to hear people’s stories about him.

Ironically, a year ago on this very same day, June 30th, I was with my sister and brother-in-law seeing Ghost in concert for the first time. We all had a great time and it’s one of my favorite memories…it’s just strange to think a year in the future, I’d be at his memorial service.

Interesting thing that happened today at the service: my sister received an anonymous small bouquet of white carnations. Nobody knows who it was from. Apparently someone pulled up, only came up as far as the driveway and asked someone heading into the house to give the carnations to her. My sister didn’t recognize the person based on the description given, so they may have just been the deliverer. She really loves the carnations and wonders who they are from, since there was no note on it. Life’s mysteries…♥

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A few evenings ago, I had some time to spare while waiting to go to dinner with one of my friends. What better way than to spend it blowing bubbles?!

I honestly hadn’t blown bubbles in forever. It just felt like such a whimsical, spontaneous thing to do, and it was unexpectedly rather therapeutic…

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I played Ruby Tuesday by the Rolling Stones on my phone and literally sat there blowing bubbles for a few solid minutes. It was a very beautiful moment, as silly as it may sound.

It was like reverting back to a means of simple childhood bliss. Seeing all the colors in each bubble, reflecting in the sunlight was simply beautiful to look at. It’s the times like that when you’re fully engrossed in the beauty of a moment, in which the heavy things in life don’t feel like such a shadow.  ♥

Every moment is a gift. Just like the lyrics in the song:

“There’s no time to lose, I heard her say.
Catch your dreams before they slip away.”

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Thanks for reading…see you next time! ♥

 

Golden Hour

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Ahh…summer evenings. ♥

There really is something lovely about golden hour, especially in the summer. Despite how hot it was here (a little over 100 degrees or so), I still enjoyed sitting out in my backyard on Saturday evening before I made the short drive to Barnes & Noble later on.

Out here, I get to hear all kinds of things. Mostly the rustle of leaves from the gigantic tree that shades the backyard, and then the hum from the cars on the freeway. It’s a perfect blend of nature and city life. ♥

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Just sitting out in my backyard for a little while feels like a full recharge. As much as I enjoy being out and about, I definitely enjoy moments of complete solitude as well. My tiny backyard feels like a secluded corner of the world where I can admire the greenery and be alone with my thoughts. 🙂

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My outfit, incidentally, went along fittingly with golden hour on Saturday evening!!!

This is probably my favorite go-to wrap dress. It’s light, comfortable, and simple! I love the color so much. It’s from Forever 21.

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Paired with a bow, it makes for a very retro-casual look. And perfect for frolicking around the bookstore, no doubt!

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I made this bangle bracelet awhile back. ♥

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I got my nails redone!!! This time, much much shorter (well, to me they are short compared to what I previously have had!). I decided to be a risk taker and let the manicurist create whatever design she wanted. Thus, I ended up with an artsy, almost animal-like print on my nails. It’s very different for me, but I love it!

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Golden hour…how I love you!!! I managed to take these outfit photos at just the right time, no?

So after this, I went to Barnes & Noble. There’s nothing like ordering a cold drink at the café there and browsing through the store aimlessly, stopping to look at books that catch your eye…

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Like this!!!

By the end of the evening, I looked through books about unicorn-inspired food, wolves, and serial killers. A pretty strange mashup but, rather interesting reads nonetheless.

My week has started really nicely! I had a conversation with one of the regulars I see at my favorite coffee shop before work today, and we were discussing creativity. He was talking about how he has learned to appreciate art much more as he’s gotten older, and that ‘creative people make the world a prettier place’.

I love that! ♥ How inspiring!

See ya next time! 😉

 

Me and a Paint Brush…

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Ahoy! 🙂

As you can see, I did some art shopping! I needed some new small canvas’ and specific acrylic paint for my next creation. I hope it turns out the way I envision it…fingers crossed!

I love the feeling of excitement before creating something new. You really have no idea how it will turn out, no?

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But that’s the beauty of it…not knowing how something will turn out is intriguing. ♥

Today’s ensemble is simply pink, with butterfly accents. Sometimes I’m not sure what to wear, so I stick with certain things I know I love, such as pink, and my butterfly headband that seems to go with anything when I don’t know which headband to wear!

Today was super busy, and I plan to share more about the neat event happening next Thursday! I’ll save it for next week though, and I’m really looking forward to sharing it.

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I made some new jewelry this week…and it’s part of a little series I started, where I make jewelry inspired by a particular place in the world:

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I have here, “Dreaming of Dubai” and “Swedish Summer”.

Dubai, UAE is a place I’ve always found to be mysteriously beautiful. I love the desert and the idea of a large city where the desert meets the sea is quite enchanting. With that in mind, I decorated the first ring with lots of beige and gold accents!

The second ring is a lot of fun and is inspired by the Midsummer festival in Sweden. I topped it off with a pretty pink Dala horse. ♥

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Speaking of places in the world…I recently discovered that there is a country called Azerbaijan.

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It popped up in my international viewers list on WordPress last week. As a geography nerd, I had never heard of it. So of course I thought, there’s a country I haven’t heard of? NO WAY! 

I watched a few travel vlogs on Youtube about it. Fascinating! I really like the fact that I’ve never lost my fascination with different countries. In elementary school, I kept a world map in my binder and would browse through it at school, imagining what the countries looked like.

Then sometimes at recess (when I wasn’t in the library looking at books, LOL) I remember having a friend and we would play out on the grass, pretending we were in a different place in the world and pointing with admiration at imaginary buildings.

I wonder if the recess staff thought we were nuts? 🙂 Perhaps, but…

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Great quote, and sooo true! Imagination has played a huge role in my life and also in my creative works. ♥

So for tonight, it’ll be me and my paint brush. For fellow artists and crafters out there, keep on creating and I hope you keep your imagination alive and active. 🙂

See you next time!!!