Friday, October 20, 2017

Transitioning with Tartan

Fall has finally arrived here in Richmond. The days are chilly, sun setting earlier, leaves changing, everyone has started pulling out their scarves and boots and I couldn't be more excited. I've been loving all things tartan this fall so it's no surprise that I'm slightly obsessing over this personalized Barrington Gifts tartan tote. I've used this bag during a crazy day of classes, going to work, as a travel bag, and just as an every day tote. I love pairing it with jeans, riding boots, and slouchy sweater but it also goes great with a casual athleisure look. It's the perfect size, has plenty of pockets for storage, the leather is the perfect neutral, and I love that you can change how you want to personalize your bag!

Oxford Jeans Loafers Necklace |

I hope you all have had a wonderful week and you're enjoying the first weeks of fall!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Fall Beauty Product Haul

With fall comes change, both in the weather and in my cosmetics case! We all know that I tend to stick to what I know and I don't like switching up my beauty products for fear that my skin will have a negative reaction to them, but recently I've been trying tons of new products and loving them. Now, I'm not that person that has an overwhelming amount of different palettes, lipsticks, skin care products, etc. because once I find a shade or a product that works for me, I keep it around for awhile. So everything I am sharing with you all today I have been using for about a month and a half now, so I'm not recommending some product that I'm not all that familiar with. Also, none of these beauty products are sponsored so don't worry about me sharing something just because I have to! All of these products are something I use in my every day routine and that I absolutely love!

Never in my life have I actually had a set skincare routine or used any kind of system. I've always kept the kind of skincare products I use to a minimum because for one I know that a majority of the time you spent upwards of $30 and the product doesn't even do what it's supposed to, or your skin has  a negative reaction to the product. So, I've never done much in regards to skin care. I used to just use tea tree oil for my occasional breakouts and apply coconut oil for moisturizing, but a couple of months ago I started breaking out all of the sudden and none of my regular products were working. At the time I was sent a Voxbox containing these Murad products and they came at the perfect time. Just a week after using them my breakout had cleared up and now two months in my skin is completely different, in a good way. 

I had finally begun scraping the bottom of my Laura Mercier travel size setting powder when my brother over at Glammed by Ryan recommended this powder to me. I was a little skeptical at first because I hadn't ever heard much about this brand and because their line was fairly small, but I'm so glad I tried it out. Not only is the full size version significantly more inexpensive than the Laura Mercier powder but it also works so much better. My makeup usually lasts quite awhile regardless, but with this powder I could practically sleep in my makeup and wake up and it would look just as great. 

I used to be hooked on this foundation for years, but after trying out this tinted moisturizer I will never go back. I started to go for more of a natural look whenever I did my makeup so it only made sense to find a product that gave me that natural "glowy" look I was going for. Despite the fact that this is a tinted moisturizer this product gives me great coverage, especially considering the fact that my skin tends to always be flushed and blotchy. Also, don't worry, you can still apply your favorite highlighter and contour with this product!

I was looking for the perfect pinky neutral lip product and stumbled across this one on day after already swatching 10+ lip products earlier. This liquid lipstick looks great both alone as well as when it's paired with a gloss as well. I used the shade In Demand but I've also tested out quite a few of the other shades and they are all stunning. My favorite thing about this lip product is that it actually lasts the wear and tear throughout the day. I've found that with many other matte lip products they tend to crack and wear off really easily because they're so dry but this product doesn't budge once it's on and dried. 

Every once in awhile your skin just needs a little extra TLC and that's where face masks come into the picture. If I've been wearing makeup more frequently, I'm breaking out, or I can just tell my skin needs a little extra attention I use a face mask. I tend to use the Freeman masks because they've always worked so well for me, but this charcoal and black sugar one has definitely changed the game for me. My skin feels so much softer and blemishes are reduced. Plus this mask is under $5 and can easily last you for over half a year so it's definitely a win, win. 

I never thought I would find myself using lip gloss again but I am obsessed with this product from Buxom. Generally, if I want a fresh faced look I'll wear this product with my tinted moisturizer, a little mascara, and some blush and my makeup looks amazing.

Have a wonderful week ya'll and if you have any questions about the products I've shared just leave a comment and I'll get back to you as soon as possible!

Monday, October 9, 2017

College Living Series: A Balancing Act

My third year of undergrad has been pure chaos. I've always been someone who tends to get stressed and anxious over even the smallest of things just because of the way I'm wired, but this semester has already proven to be harder than any other semester I've ever had in the past.

When I graduated from high school I felt like I was standing on pretty solid ground- I had gotten my generalized anxiety mostly under control, I had a stable part time job, I knew what major I was going into in college, there was consistency and the unknowns weren't too overwhelming. But that all changed when I jumped head first into my first year of undergrad. I took on way too much, way too quickly, not realizing that college and living on your own without your parent's guidance was nothing at all like living back home and going to public school. I bombed my first semester as a freshman- both academically and when it came to my mental and physical health. Once the end of my freshman year rolled around I vowed to have more balance and patience in and with my life. There was no way I was going to make it out alive, literally, if I kept on going the way I was. So balance became the thing I focused most on- not just school, not just working, not just my social life, everything needed to be equally attended to and taken care of.

So now, here I am junior year, starting all over again. I felt like everything just hit me all at once, going 100mph hour and I was looking the other way when it happened. So lets just lay it all out here. I started out by becoming a double major in Psychology and Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies, that turned into taking 18 credits, which then turned into taking 12, which then lead me to dropping one course and adding another, then I had formal recruitment, then I became a member of Alpha Sigma Alpha, then I started having multiple meetings a week, philanthropy events started up, dues came into question, oh also, I have a part time job, which I almost quit. So basically, I was drowning. And in all honesty, I'm pretty sure we've all felt that way at some point. I needed to get my life back under control and needed some consistency in my world again, I needed a life preserver to keep my head above water. So I dropped my 18 credits down to 12, instead of working upwards of 25 hours a week I have restricted it to 15, I try to go to the gym at least 5 days a week to focus on my health, and sometimes I have to say no to meetings & philanthropy for the sake of my grades, job, or my sanity. College is a balancing act, and adulthood even more so.

But how the heck do you even balance all your responsibilities? How do you make time to figure out how to balance it all? What if you don't have the support of those around you to do so? What if you literally can't even get out of bed because your so emotionally and mentally paralyzed by this stress and anxiety of all the things you're supposed to do?

To be honest, you just do what you can, when you can, and however you can. But here are some ways you can achieve a little more balance in your life- whether you're a college student taking 18 credits, a sophomore year high school student, or someone who is dedicating their life to that office job & their three kids.

Just don't do anything for a moment. I know this may sound super counter productive but my clinical psychologist constantly recommended this to me and as soon as I actually did it I felt like I could finally just breathe. I took one day to literally just not do anything but lay in bed. Our minds are just like any other organ and our body and they too can become worn out and ill. Not in the same way that maybe your stomach reacts to a stomach virus, but it's still the same concept. So take some time to nurture your body as well as your mental health. Maybe you only need a couple hours or maybe you need a couple days, either way take the time to care for yourself and you will most likely find that after this down time you feel rejuvenated and more able to take your responsibilities.

Prioritize what is most important each day. I find this to be one of the things that helps me the most in balancing my life because not every day is exactly the same, and some days on thing is more important to do than it was the day before. Some days the most important things on your to do list might be to make sure you work that five hour shift, go to your two lectures, and visit the library to get those two papers done. But other days the most important thing might be to go to the gym for an hour that morning, visit the library to do some reading, and then make sure you go to the grocery store. I do my absolute best to make sure that I make at least three things a top priority each day and try to get them done. Then by the time the end of the week rolls around, because of the fact that you've prioritized, you don't have to stress about the fact that that paper is due next Monday, or that you don't have any groceries, or that you feel lethargic because you didn't go to the gym even once this week. Because you prioritized each day and at the end of it all, everything got done!

Make lists.  Making lists is probably the thing that keeps me most grounded when I'm overwhelmed. It's kind of like throwing a life preserver to yourself in order to keep your head above water. Making lists really helps to put things into perspective for you and makes it easier to look at the big picture. I make to do lists every day in order of what needs to happen/get done, I also make grocery lists, blog post schedule lists, lists of bills I need to pay. You name it, I've probably got a list for it.

Learn to take a step back. Looking at the big picture is one of the things that helps me the most when I'm feeling overwhelmed by all the things going on in my life. It's so easy to feel like you're being pulled in a million different directions when you have so many responsibilities so it's really important to be ab able to step back from your current situation and take a look at the bigger picture. Take a moment to realize that not all of these things have a deadline for today, some things you don't have to get done until three months later and some things might have to get done this week but if you prioritize you might find that it's not all that overwhelming.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Blushing for Eyelets

As much as I'd love to be able to wear full on fall clothing right now- excursion vests, riding boots, and blanket scarves, the air still just is not cool enough here in Richmond. So I've been opting for easy transition pieces that still have that fall feel, like this eyelet sweater you can find here. Once fall rolls around I generally gravitate to neutrals- navy, camel, blush, hunter green. So of course this sweater and these adorable flats you can find here, were the perfect pieces to pull out during this time of transition. I kept going back and forth between this sweater because I couldn't decide if it was too "trendy" or not, but after I tried it on I was convinced it was a necessity. These flats are also one of my favorite pairs of shoes ever. They can easily be taken from day to night and they are also the perfect shade of neutral pink- not too nude but not too pink, I love it! I pulled everything together with this personalized necklace that you can find here, the perfect neutral tote, and my rose gold watch from MVMT here.

Sweater Jeans Flats Tote |

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Anniversary Q&A

Hi guys, Ashley and Ryan here today to answer all your burning questions about our crazy, hectic, dysfunctional relationship! You all have been seeing a lot more of Ryan on TRP recently and absolutely go crazy for the live streams we do together so I figured there'd be nothing better than to co-write a blog post together. Over the past couple of weeks leading up to our anniversary I told you all to send in any and all questions you had relating to our relationship and we would answer as many as we could in this blog post! Thank you all for sending in so many questions and for following along on our little adventure together! We both appreciate you all so much!

How long have you and Ryan been dating?
A: We will have been dating for a year this Wednesday. Although, it kinda feels like six haha.
R: Refer back to her answer for mine.

How did you and Ryan meet?
A: My best friend actually introduced us. The story is actually pretty hilarious but basically I went out with her and she introduced us while we were out, I didn't give Ryan the time of day initially but eventually I gave in because how I could I resist that adorable smile.
R: Our mutual friend brought Ashley out to a get together at my then house and I introduced myself to her because she was obviously the most stunning girl in the room. She didn't contribute much to our first conversation that night, but I persisted nonetheless. By the next weekend I got her phone number after one of my fraternity functions and walked her home because that's what gentlemen do, right? The rest is history. 

Did you or Ryan make the first move?
A: Ryan, most definitely. I was very much in a relationship with myself at the time and was not looking!
R: A man goes for what a man wants. I don't let others make moves before me because if you follow that logic you'll miss out! (Ashley proof reading here, this answer is just too much for me haha)

What is the hardest thing about having a relationship in college?
A: I think the hardest thing for me is just having the time needed to make a relationship work. Undergrad is so chaotic that relationships often get pushed to the side and are not tended too.
R: Who pays for the meal this time. Just kidding, we've got that system down pat. I'd say making our schedules work so we have enough time to see each other is the hardest.

How do you find "your person" in college?
A: As cliche as it sounds the easiest way to find that person is to not search for them. Ryan came into my life at the most unexpected time and in the most unexpected way. Focus on yourself and do what makes you happy and you'll run into someone who's doing the exact same thing, and you'll just click.
R: What she said. You find what your looking for when you don't search for it sometimes. Very cliche, but definitely true. Focus on your education, your social network, jobs, and other things before looking to commit to a person. Busy people attract other people is my belief. 

What did you do on your first date?
A: Ryan took me to the most delicious restaurant that serves asian cuisine and then we went to the VMFA and browsed some of the exhibits.  It was really simple date but if you know me you know that I'm pleased by the smallest things and you could tell he really put a lot of thought into it. 
R: Took her to Foo Dogs which is an awesome asian fusion restaurant. Then, we went to the local museum and browsed around for a bit till we went outside and sat by the fountain beside the museum and just chatted.

What is your favorite thing about the other?
A: I think my favorite thing about Ryan is that he always knows how to make people laugh. Half the time he will have you cracking up and you don't even realize what he said or did that was so funny.
R: Ashley looks very classy and put together in all her photos, but I get to see the goofy side of her when we are together. I won't go into detail, but she is a very witty person. I like people who don't take things too seriously because life isn't meant to be. 

The hardest thing you had to overcome during your relationship so far?
A: For me, the hardest thing was to let go of fears that past relationships had created for me and give this new relationship the opportunity to prove itself. I was so anxious about the same things happening again that I failed to realize that Ryan and this relationship was completely different than past ones.
R: That I am a very relaxed person. Ashley is more serious and diligent about getting everything done. Sometimes its hard to have two opposite personalities be on the same page all the time, but that's what makes our relationship more fun.

Biggest pet peeve about the other?
A: Ryan never has any sense of urgency, ever. Literally, the building could be on fire and he would be like "ok, ok, let me just finish cooking my rice and chicken real quick. We're fine." 
R: Ashley is always go go go! I'm more like chill chill chill. I definitely am California and she's NYC. 

What is one thing this relationship has taught you?
A: To not let the new people in your life pay for others past mistakes. It was so hard to overcome my fears and habits I had become set in due to old relationships that there were one too many times where I found Ryan paying the price for other guys' mistakes. 
R: Compromise. I'm not the best at that and that's usually why I am better being single. I can make my own rules and decisions. Compromise is everything in a relationship. Sometimes you have to accept the other person's choice, even if you feel as though yours is right. 

What is the other's favorite thing to do?
A: Either eat or watch sports, no doubt about it. Honestly, he loves to do both at the same time haha.
R: She loves to be active and hike or go down to the river or adventure to a new location. But, don't be fooled. She's in her element when she's in sweatpants, long sleeve tee, and snuggled in her bed with some new show she'll binge for the entire week. 

If you could travel to one location together where would you go?
A: I would really love to go to Greece together. I've never been there but I've always dreamed of it and I think it would be a wonderful place to learn new things together and grow.
R: South Korea would be sweet since that's my heritage. I would like to show her how my culture compares to America and expose her to completely different people. 

What is the one thing you know will always making the other happy?
A: Food. Half the time I think Ryan just eats because he likes the taste and the concept, not because he's actually hungry.
R: Ashley is very easily pleased but I'd say the one thing that will never stop making her happy is dogs. She get so excited whenever she sees one and never hesitates to walk right over and ask to pet them.

How has this relationship been compared to your past ones?
A: I've been working on not comparing this relationship to old ones but even if I was I couldn't really even compare them if I wanted. This relationship is so healthy, honest, and easy-going and all of my past relationships were nothing like that.
R: Definitely the best one. We have a good understanding of each other and I've matured significantly since my past relationships. 

What's the others favorite musician?
A: Kanye. I'm not sure why to be honest, but I'm pretty sure if he could choose to be in a relationship with anyone else it would be Kanye West haha.
R: Ashley likes John Mayer. She thinks he's beautiful. We went to see him at the Verizon Center a couple of months ago and I think was single for that night while he was performing.

Who is the more organized one in the relationship?
A: Most definitely me. I'm a micro manager and always planning so there's no doubt about it.
R: Yeah, lets just say I'm deferring this one to her. I like to observe the situation and chill. Someone else can take the lead and worry about plans haha.

What is ya'lls favorite thing to do together?
A: To try out new restaurants. Ryan and I just looked at each other as we were answering to try to come up with a more interesting answer but to be honest, we love eating. Sorry guys haha
R: Exploring the cities we are in and finding low-key spots to eat at is one of our favorite things. We really enjoy discovering new places.

What was your first impression of the other?
A: To be completely honest I thought Ryan was a tool. He seemed like the type of fraternity guy that did whatever he wanted regardless of how it effected others and just thought he was sooo cool. Fortunately though, I was wrong
R: She was very quiet and didn't interact with any of the people she wasn't familiar with. Thankfully though I took that leap of faith and now look where we are!

I hope you all have enjoyed this post and I'm sure you will all be seeing more of Ryan here on TRP!

Photographer: @thierryakki &