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The ASK 5k in RVA

This morning I woke up at 7AM.  Now, I know what you’re thinking.  It’s Saturday, why aren’t you sleeping in?  And on most Saturdays that couldn’t be more true.  Saturday morning is the morning where you wake up and realize I don’t have class today.  You wake up with a smile, make some breakfast, check your email, go on Twitter, and check your Instagram.

I may have been a little tired this morning and super tired now, but I woke up with a smile on my face because I’m running for a good cause.  I love doing charity and in the midst of final exams, school, work, and internships, I forgot how much I miss doing charity work.  That good feeling that you get from your tired muscles after knowing that you did something good.

I ran the ASK 5k in 2012, 2013, and this year.  I couldn’t go last year because I had a forensics and debate trip that same weekend.  But after watching Bubzbeauty’s teespring campaign and buy that super cute I’m a Unicorn shirt, I knew that I wanted to get back in the habit of doing charity work.  I know finding a job is important, but sometimes its good to lend a helping hand, to get your hands dirty, and your body going.

When I got to the Diamond this morning, where the ASK 5K and fun walk is located.  I looked around and smiled at the sea of people that came to run.  There were families running in memory of a loved one and runners with a good heart.  There are so many children affected by cancer.  And with this one race, we can help make their lives better.  The ASK 5K in Richmond raised $148,448 so far!

My leg muscles are aching and I can feel them shaking as I walk up the stairs.  But I’m happy (and severely out of shape).  Despite my slow pace, I still finished the race in 36 minutes.  (That may be really slow for some people, but keep in mind I haven’t really worked out in months!)

I know already my legs will hurt tomorrow but knowing that my achey muscles and fundraised money will help make a child’s day, makes it all worthwhile.

Life, College, and the Future

I’m about to graduate college and I have never been more lost.  Some times I just want to cry, punch a wall, or just scream at the top of my lungs.  But I soon realize after that moment of frustration that I’ll only end up with stinging eyes, a broken hand (possibly a hole in the wall), and a sore throat.

To be honest, its scares the sh** out of me that in just a few months college is over.  In college, I complain and whine about work but at least there is a syllabus, a plan to follow.  After college, there is nothing.  I am the one that has to make the plans.  And quite frankly, I don’t know where to start.

No matter what I do, I always feel like its not enough.  I stay up late doing work, worrying about the future, and eventually falling asleep with tears in my eyes and a nightmare that quickly settles in to my consciousness.   More often than not, I wake up with a jolt either from the nightmare or the distinct feeling of failing or being late.

For me, college has been a never ending cycle of stress, anxiety, and depression.  Freshmen year I seriously contemplated dropping out.  I was lonely, scared, and lost.  And the best remedy for that was work.  I started my retail job and my blog.  Occupying my time with a bunch of responsibilities worked for a few months, but after fall semester of freshmen year was over.  My distractions did little to settle my fears.  In J-term, I was constantly tired.  I didn’t want to do anything but hide under the covers and mindlessly flip through channels.

Sophomore year was probably my happiest year.  I finally felt like I found my niche.  I had a routine.  And working out 6 days a week really helped too.  Burning my stress and sweating it out with fun cardio was probably the best part of my day.  And I finally had a few classes where I could see a few familiar faces.  And having people just say, “Hi!” to me as they walk by made a huge difference.  For the first time, I felt included in something.

After finals Sophomore year, I felt great.  I did well on my tests and I was done (at least for a few months…).  But as life has it, my life was a living H-E-double hockey sticks during the summer.  I had relatives visit.  And like all relatives, the popular “What are you doing with the rest of your life?” question comes up.  After replying that I was an English, you can almost here the jaws drop and the intake of air, followed by a “What will you do with that? Write?” and then they start laughing at the impossibility.

I sat there listening to their advice.  They mean well.  I get it.  But being told I’m useless and doing everything wrong is not really going to help me.  I thought I had conquered my anxiety junior and senior year of high school.  But I was wrong.  This conversation was enough to set my heart in to a frenzy.  My hands to start shaking, breathing to become hard, and endless tears to start falling down my face.  I tried to let him finish.  But I couldn’t, I had to leave.  I ran in to my room, shut the door, and tried to take a deep breath.  When I failed, I could feel myself getting light headed.  I landed hard on my knees and continued to cry with jagged breaths.  Eventually my tears slowed and my breathing became regular again. I put myself in to child’s pose and took a few deep breaths.  I don’t know how long it took me to get back to normal.  But when I went downstairs he had already left.

His words tied me down like a rock as I tried to swim to the surface.  And no matter how hard I working to stay afloat, I couldn’t constantly feel the weight dragging me down.  No matter how hard I worked it wasn’t enough because I was going down a path that would not lead to success.

I wanted to believe that I could succeed, but his words were like knives.

A few months later and a semester away from graduating, I’m still not sure what I’m doing with my life.  But I have become more okay with this.  I started freelancing a few months ago and I’m starting to see my work on various company blogs.  I even started interning for Play Channel Magazine and RVATourism.  I find satisfaction in what I’m doing.  And that is the best thing in the world.

“You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go, and see what happens”- Mandy Hale

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Healthy Alternatives to Your Unhealthy Cravings

I love chocolate, cake, ice cream, cookies, lattes, pastries…need I go on?  Anyway, eating those things everyday will not be good for me or my self-esteem when I step on that scale.  So, here are a few healthy alternatives I have been switching my unhealthy foods for.  I hope you guys find this helpful in stopping your late-night, midday, and early morning cravings.

Ice cream, who doesn’t love ice cream?  It’s cold, creamy, sweet, and super delicious!  But it has a tone of sugar and should not be eaten everyday.  Yeah, eating a gallon of ice cream by yourself is not a good idea…though it is tempting…

Anyway, my substitute for ice cream is yogurt.  And that is LIGHT yogurt because it is lower in calories and sugar, fat free, and has probiotics.  When you crave ice cream, you are craving something cold, sweet, and creamy.  And yogurt has ALL of those things.  So, grab a cup and start eating.

When I crave something sweet and salty and I’m about to grab a bag of chocolate and a bag of potato chips, I stop myself and grab the almonds, cranberries, and semi-sweet chocolate chips instead.  Almonds have a ton of fiber, the cranberries are tart and sweet, and the chocolate is chocolate, so what other excuse do you need?  The salt from the almonds will kill your craving for salty, crunchy foods and the cranberries and chocolate chips will satisfy all your sweet tooth cravings.

For something salty, I love potato chips, but they are not that great for you.  Instead, I usually eat popcorn (not that high in fat super butter kind).  I love Skinny Pop.  It’s only 39 calories per cup and it’s crunchy and has just the right amount of salt.

Then, there is cake.  Soft, fluffy, sweet cake.  Great, now while I am writing this I want cake.  Well, time to bust out the blender.  Yes I use a blender to make cake.  And here’s how you can too.  Take your favorite cake recipes and substitute out the oil for either squash or zucchini.  I promise you won’t taste any of the vegetables!  All you have to do is chop the squash or zucchini in to chunks, dump them in to the blender with about a tablespoon of water and an egg.  Blend it all up, then add the suggested amount of flour and sugar.  And you have HEALTHY cake batter (the batter should be a little runnier than fat packed cake batter).  Bake them in to cupcakes or line your cake pan with parchment paper.  Fill the pan with batter and bake at 350 degrees fahrenheit until its cooked through.  After about 20 to 30 minutes, you have super fluffy delicious cake without the guilt.  Your welcome.

What do you like to crave?  Have any healthy alternatives?  
I would love to know!  Comment down below!
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The Sounds of 2015

**Warning: this could be a tearjerker**

Facebook has the very odd ability to make me feel happy, excited, joyful, jealous, sad, and depressed just by scrolling through my news feed.  I have a new little niece and she might be the cutest thing in the entire world.  My friend just got a new puppy and he might be the happiest, fluffiest puppy in the world and you can’t help but want to hug him.  Then there are the happy couples engaged to be married and people who just announced their relationships.  But like life, Facebook doesn’t sugar coat it.  Last night, while I was listening to the bang and pop of fireworks fired off a few blocks from my house and welcoming the New Year at home with my family, a friend, a few time zones away, was fighting for her life.

In the event of a death, there is a huge tornado of emotion from anger and denial to acceptance and tears.  The huge list of messages from people you barely knew typing, “RIP” goes on and on and reading each one of those messages feels like a sharp edge cutting in to your skin.

No matter how many times we say it.  No matter how many times we see it.  We still don’t get it.  We forget how short life is and we take it for granted. We take if for granted everyday that we are alive.  We take it for granted that we can wake up and see the sunrise the next morning.  We take for granted the soft snoring sounds of the people you love surrounding you as you lay awake in bed.  The quiet creek of the house above your head and the soft breathing of your loved ones cover you like a warm familiar blanket.  We take for granted that warm fuzzy feeling we get when we are full, happy, and surrounded by the ones we love.

Instead, we complain that the house is not quiet.  We complain about things everyday that we will soon miss.  Because when we are alone we yearn for that soft snoring sound.  Instead we hear the echoing sounds of silence.

People always make New Year resolutions that fail within weeks and sometimes even days after starting.   But this year will be different.  I won’t make impossible resolutions.  Instead of being stuck in the past or focused on the future, My New Year resolution is to live in the present.  I will be grateful for every tear, heartache, smile, and laugh because every day I feel those things “I am alive.”

My Makeup Look for RVA Fashion Week

On Saturday night, I went to RVA Fall Fashion weekend designer showcase at Haxall Point.  This is the first post in my RVA Fall Fashion series, so stayed tuned for this week’s posts!  I had to work Saturday morning, so I didn’t have too much time to get ready.  I had three hours to eat lunch, shower, put on makeup, and get dressed.  I don’t like feeling rushed.  But I think I pulled it off pretty well.  It only took about half an hour for me to put on a full face of makeup.

I think I did a pretty good job.  For more casual days, I usually take about ten minutes on my makeup. But I wanted to create a light smoky eye, fill in my brows (which I don’t usually do because of sheer laziness), and give myself a flawless complexion (which I usually don’t do because it is terrible for your face to be covered by a mask of foundation).
I don’t really like applying too much color around my eyes.  I always go for neutrals and a bold lip.  I love bold lips!  There is just something magical about them!  Right now, I am obsessed with this purplish pink color from Revlon Just Bitten.  It is the lip stain in Crave.

I think I have found my new favorite mascara.  Do you have those times where you didn’t know how bad your mascara was until you discovered the most perfect mascara ever!  I finally started using my sample size Makeup Forever HD Smoky Extravaganza mascara from My Sephora birthday gift.  And I fell in love.  Obviously, I will be reviewing this later.
The Products I used:
Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation
ELF eyebrow kit
Revlon Just Bitten (Crave)
Too Faced Peach Blush
Physician’s Formula Bronzer
Anyway, this makeup look is one of my favorites.  And this look stayed put all night!  I will be uploading a YouTube Video of the Fashion show really soon!  If you want a tutorial of this makeup look, comment down below and I’ll do the best I can to make a tutorial.  Thanks for reading!
And the next post will be all about what I wore!
**This post is not sponsored.**

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