Damage Control and Nourishment

I started lightening my hair last week. Its been a journey for sure. I am going to do a whole new tutorial on the steps I took to document it. But because of this recent process I have some new reviews and product insights to share with you all.

In Manchester, I fell in love with the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist which is a deep conditioner. I really enjoy the squeeze tube packaging which involves no lid or cap whatsoever. Very clever and convenient. This has been saving my poor damaged hair and keeping it somewhat manageable. Plus it smells amazing. I am not even done with this tube, but because it was on sale at CVS, I just bought two more new tubes of it for $6. The yellow tube on the right is a new product from Carmex that I picked up for about $6 at Duane Reade. Its called a healing cream and I have been using it on my hands and feet, both of which have been suffering from the previous cold weather. What I like the most about this product is how quickly it absorbs. I get very sweaty hands extremely easily, so I cannot have a hand cream that leaves any residue on me.

Interesting point on my sweaty hands issue. I was diagnosed with hyperhydrosis and IBS when I was a child, but recently I have noticed that ever since I have improved my diet, both of these afflictions have subsided considerably!!! This was a very exciting realization for me that occurred when I was watching a commercial for a new diabetic drug. They listed the symptoms of low blood sugar as shaking sweating. I had never really associated the two, but on a biological level, I wonder if my hyperhydrosis and blood sugar sensitivities are related somehow….hmmmm. The important thing to note here is that a healthier diet really can make a huge difference in your life.

Moving on to some new recipes I have been trying!

I truly suck at baking, but I made two loaves of this Pumpkin Bread last week! My roommates and I ate it up so quick and it was delicious. I got the recipe from a youtuber named Laura Vitale. You can watch the video and get the recipe here although on the list of ingredients she forgets to list that you use 1/2 a cup of pumpkin puree. Other recipes I have in my cookbook called for 4 cups of sugar, which seemed ridiculous, but maybe it was for two loaves….

This is called Hippie Rice and I got the recipe from here off Glamour’s health blog called Vitamin C. Really simple and easy to make and SOOOO good. The one thing is that this didnt really keep me full. I would need to have some protein on the side or maybe add some chicken? I’ll be experimenting with this in the future for sure. The toasted sunflower seeds were the perfect touch and worthy investment for my cupboard. I also like putting a spoonful of them in a half an avocado as snack. yum yum yum.

I have a major recommendation out there for all my busy readers who need to de-stress. Whole Foods had a coupon on its website for $1 off any box of Yogi Tea. They were also having an in store promotion on select boxes of Yogi Tea, so I ended up only paying $2 for this and its one of the most amazing herbal teas I have ever tried. I am a strong believer in sleepy time tea preparing me for sleep or peppermint tea helping my digestion, so its no surprise that I find this stress relief tea legit relaxing. It was kind of freaky after the first time I drank this. I got this really soft dopey feeling as all the tension went out of me. It reminded me of a more subtle version of being high! Totally crazy! I am officially addicted!!!

Tax Refund

SADNESS. I got my tax refund and it was less than half of what I was expecting! That’s what I get for having my mother do my taxes! hahah. One of these days I will actually learn to do it myself. Luckily I am starting work at the Rockefeller J. Crew on Tuesday evening. I cannot wait to be working and generating an actual income. I bank with Chase and yesterday they made me open a new college student account (even though I am graduating in May) because my existing account underwent some stupid changes and was about to get fined $12 every month. Boo, so now I have to get a new debit card and account number and all that bullshit.

Yesterday was a good Friday. I went to a church on 86th and West End and helped out at their food bank for a couple hours. It was one of my required activities for the honors program at school, but I really enjoyed myself and hope to go back someday. It was super simple and just involved stocking shelves and bagging pasta/rice. People kept coming up to me and asking me in Spanish to explain the point system and I definitely wasnt that helpful since I didnt fully understand the point system myself. I guess each person is assigned a point allowance based on their family size. Every item in the food bank had a different point value. For example the oranges were 2 for 1 point and a jar of peanut butter was 1 point. The system is set up to encourage people to eat healthier so items like fruit juice are worth a lot of points and have a limit of one per person. Everyone I worked with was super nice and I definitely need to volunteer more in my spare time.

Friday evening, Charlie cooked me angel hair pasta with ricotta, tofu sausage, eggplant and sundried tomato red sauce. It was AMAZING. My responsibility was to pick up a bottle of red wine, and because I suck at life and know nothing about wine I had a hard time finding something. I ended up just getting something cheap. Charlie approved of my choice so I guess my ‘French Table Wine’ must have been okay. hahah. I have a lot to learn in that whole alcoholic realm. We consumed everything, talked about boys and then watched Ja Rule music videos on youtube.

Afterwards Charlie took me and Carol Ann to a party in Brooklyn, which was very enjoyable. I proceeded to have a drunken heart to heart with that girl. Twas good for me and now I feel a lot more bonded with her. Honestly though, I am so thankful I am not a lesbian because its hard enough to find a worthy partner without dealing with all the additional bullshit that some of my gay friends have to endure. 🙁 I honestly dont know if I believe in bisexuality anymore….mainly because I have yet to see it happen truthfully in real life.

Today Alice and I went to Ikea so I could pick up some organizational items. Then I proceeded to eat some of the delicious chocolate cake and homemade frosting Alice and Lesley baked last night. Yum yum yum! I am bringing some to Marissa’s apartment tonight for our girl chat!

Generic? I think not!

Loving the Fall 2011 look book for Lauren Conrad’s new contemporary collection called Paper Crown!! You can see all of the images at Fashionista. I have been having a hard time keeping up with all the different shows from Fashion Week, but I know I will get to see them all eventually. My blogging motivation (that urge to blog and read blogs) has considerably subsided now that I have some legit things to do: internship and school; but I am trying to keep on top of it all! Must keep updating!!

Due to my eternal brokeness, my skincare is increasingly becoming generic versions of the branded stuff….I am currently using the Duane Reade Cleansing Cream (generic of Clean and Clear), CVS Moisturizer for Combination Skin (generic of Neutorgena) and Duane Reade make up wipes. Thus far I am actually quite happy with all of these. They are pretty basic in principal and they get the job done, plus they cost a $1 or $2 less than the branded versions and considering how fast I go through these products, I am going to try and save as much money as possible hahah.

The weather keeps fluctuating between freezing and semi decent. There hasnt been that much precipitation though so I have been able to break out my Jeffrey Campbell over the knee boots from last year. I am still in love with these strappies. They just make a boring pair of leggings so much more interesting. 🙂 They also keep my legs nice and toasty. I have these great black knee socks from Uniqlo that I always wear with them. It helps keep the ankle from my leggings or jeans from riding up into the boot.

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Luv Luv Luv

I have this Wednesday afternoon free to myself. I just went grocery shopping and picked up a few things that I was craving, including salsa. My roommate sent me this link on eating well for a $1 a day in which this guy named Jeffrey documents his journey eating very frugally. He has $31 to spend on food for the month. Reading this was pretty inspiring and I found myself printing coupons out from coupons.com before shopping today. I got a pretty good deal on steel cut irish oatmeal, Larabars and spring salad mix at whole foods. Kind of exciting for me. 🙂 Jeffrey managed to get a jar of salsa for really cheap and was eating with avocado and eggs. Obviously I immediately started craving salsa hahaha.

Now that fashion week is almost over, there is a definite sigh of relief at my internship and I even got to go home a tad early yesterday! Unfortunately, I came home to discover seven teenagers who clearly dont live in my building cavorting on the roof. They must have snuck into my building and I was beyond irritated by their presence. I know that if something isnt said or done, its only going to get worse as the weather improves. I called the management company today and complained. I just think they need to be aware that there are a bunch of annoying ass kids who just hang out in our building, smoking weed and being stupid. I lived in a dorm for three years and I am so over this kind of behavior. Luckily, my floor is pretty united on this front because I talked to my neighbors across the hall about it too. Hopefully something changes and the kids go away.

Another bummer came when I called Levi’s to see when I could start working and they told me that I wouldn’t be able to start until next Wednesday or Thursday. Arghhh still just floating and barely scraping by. I am completely blown away that I have been able to last this long without a new paycheck. From a financial perspective, this has definitely revolutionized the way I think about money. I pretty much never eat out, but by grocery shopping frequently, I am able to eat really healthy and really deliciously. I am hoping that this domestic momentum will continue even after I can afford to sample NYC’s amazing restaurants. There is also absolutely no desire to go shopping for fashion. Of course there are items that I need to replace (black slacks) or just things that I am really craving (denim), but when I dont have any money, the pull of shopping just isnt there. Quite interesting for me to experience this since I know that I am a consumer at heart.

I had a wonderful Valentines Day!! Alice made olive oil and coconut brownies from scratch!

They were soooo good and not too sweet either. I just felt so much love from all my friends and I am in such a good place in my life right now, that there was no time for that predictable, bitter outlook that you get from most single girls. I made a distinct point to text all my friends to have a happy v-day!! Gotta spread that love!!! :heart: I had a really in-depth conversation with Norma last night over the phone. I am so in awe of her strength as she navigates this incredibly difficult situation. I know she is going to come out of this okay!!!

I think I might go take a nap right now… hmmm.

A tricky blouse

During my heydey working as an Intimates Associate at Victoria’s Secret, I became obsessed withe the brand. One of the major signs of this affliction was my desire…. no, my need to purchase something from the catalog. I ended up getting this pumpkin colored silk blouse on sale for around $30.

I have struggled to find a time and place to wear it. The first time I put this on, was last spring, where I wore it to my styling internship. Both Cannon and Kathleen complimented me on the blouse. However it is a tricky item because it is so sheer and the shape is so large. I decided to wear it on a mild January day to my interview at the Loft. I paired it with a slim black tank, Firetrap jeans and my chocolate Steve Madden riding boots. Pretty pleased with the results! I am determined to maximize my wardrobe, which means I need to start wearing items that I have committed to keeping in my closet. No more excuses for pieces that dont get worn!

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