Thursday, April 7, 2016

Reasons to Smile

One year ago today, I lost one of the most important people in my life - my wonderful grandfather, Sir. He was a sweet, generous man, an American hero, a loving husband, father and grandfather. He was strong and kind. He had the biggest sweet tooth (which I have inherited). He taught me so much, and encouraged all of his grandchildren in all of our endeavors. I am so thankful for having such an amazing person in my life while I was growing up, but I still think about and miss him everyday. 

But today I do not want to be sad I about missing him. After all, for as long as I can remember Sir called my his Granddaughter Smiles. So today I am honoring him by reminding myself of all (or as many as I could think of) my reasons, big and small, to smile.

- Amazing parents who have always supported me
- Knowing my parents will always be there to take care of me when I need them
- 3 siblings that I continue to become better friends with
- My two lovely grandmothers who have taught me so much about grace, etiquette, literature, good music and so much more
- Long conversations catching up with my Oma
- Many more loving family members
- My sweet, wonderful boyfriend who I wish my grandfather got to meet
- My best friend, Sara, who has stuck with me through the awkward years
- The most entertaining group of girls I have gotten to live with this year
- Kappa Alpha Theta for introducing me to all of them 
- Getting the best high school education I could have imagined
- I go to the greatest university and couldn't imagine being anywhere else
- I have learned and grown so much in my two years here
- Being a semester away from getting my Clemson ring!!!!!!
- The Tiger Paw being back on Bowman yesterday
- Clemson football will be back in 5 months
- Getting to learn about things I'm interested in from professors I love
- Finding my place at Clemson
- Getting to serve my sorority as New Member Director
- The 12 fantastic girls I was able to guide through that opportunity
- My sorority family for always being there for me 
- Fam dinners at Monterrey's
- Dance practices with my crazy, wonderful sisters 
- Becoming friends with the brothers of Delta Chi
- Being on the beach in two days
- Having only two weeks left of classes
- Getting to be home with my family in just about three weeks
- Being able to see my big brother get his senior boots at Texas A&M
- Getting to watch him represent Texas A&M as a yell leader in the fall
- Bonding with my sister every Monday
- Watching my little brother grow up and out grow me
- Always knowing there is room for a cookie
- Today being a gorgeous April day
- The blooming tulips outside of Tillman
- The view from my window
- A sweet roommate who puts up with me and my habits all the time
- Coffee
- Spring time and spring clothes
- Getting to dress up this weekend
- Red dresses
 - Stepping outside of my comfort zone and dancing in front of a bunch of people tomorrow
-  Not knowing what the future holds, but being excited about it anyway
- Knowing that God has a plan
- Being happy, healthy, and content in my life 
- Having 3 amazing grandparents as guardian angels

There are so many more reasons for me to smile, but this all I could think of at the moment.

I'll leave you with words of wisdom from Sir, "life is short, eat dessert first."

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

March Top 10!

Oh my goodness it's already April! This year is flying and I cannot believe it. I only have 2 1/2 weeks of classes left in my sophomore year of college. That's nuts. March was a crazy, busy month but so much fun so here are my top 10 favorites for this month!

Reenacting a childhood photo at the Chinese Theater in Hollywood

Experience // The best part of March, by far, was getting to go to California with my boyfriend for spring break. I spent the week getting to know his family and the places he grew up, and doing a little bit of exploring in the LA area. I was really stressed going into break, so I decided to take a communication/social media break during the week. I logged out of my emails, Facebook, Instagram, and turned off notifications for group chats. This was so beneficial to my trip; I was really able to destress and focus on the experience. If you're ever getting to a tipping point stress-wise, I highly recommend taking a few days to unplug. 

Beauty // My favorite beauty product this month was one I got in my February ipsy glam bag, the Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Oil, which you can find here for a pretty penny. This is definitely not something I would have just casually picked up because of the price tag, $42 and it goes under makeup?! But I have been using my tiny sample size on my entire face for two months, it'll go a long way. It sounds weird because who wants to add oil to their face (especially since I have oily skin), but it smooths everything out and makes makeup stay all day, which never happens to me. I will probably have to make the investment when I run out of my sample because it's so good. 

Clothing // My favorite clothing item is actually something I've only worn once so far. It's a black, jersey romper I bought at H&M over spring break. It is so comfy, it feels like pajamas. It is also super versatile. I wore it with a kimono and sandals to a friend's birthday dinner and with a baggy pullover sweater and keds for a comfy look for class. I can't find it online, but you may be able to find it in your local H&M.

Song // I'm not good about listening to new music ever, but one song I listened to a lot in March was People Loving People by Garth Brooks. A few different covers of it have popped up on my Spotify Discover Weekly. It's a great song with a really strong message, part of the chorus is "people loving people / that's the enemy of everything that's evil." It has been a great reminder to be conscious of the way I treat everyone I interact with.

TV show // The Bachelor ended in March, and I was devastated. I was Team Jojo all the way, but I think she's going to be an awesome bachelorette starting in May!!! I really hope Lauren and Ben are one of the successful couples from the show, and it looks like they will be. I know it seems stupid, but I love the Bachelor, my sister and I text each other our commentary and I look forward to it every week. 

TV part 2 // I haven't been loving any particular YouTube channel this month, so I'm including a second TV show that I found because of a YouTuber. In this season of The Amazing Race, all the contestants are people who are famous because of various forms of social media, including Blair Fowler from juicystar07 on YouTube. In the show, they race all over the world facing different challenges and tasks along the way. They go all sorts of places - Mexico, Columbia, France, Switzerland, and Armenia so far this season - and their obstacles relate to the culture of that location. I'm hooked.

Movie // This doesn't really count because I saw it this past weekend, but I finally saw the movie Trainwreck starring Amy Shumer and Bill Hader. So vulgar, but it is absolutely hilarious. If you want a good laugh, check it out. The one liners in it are priceless. 

Blog // My favorite blog lately is Lonestar Southern by Kate. She's a fellow Texas girl, and her sense of style is amazing! I want her closet, she's got the perfect mix of feminine and preppy. She also mixes in affordable pieces so you wouldn't have to pay an arm and a leg for some of her outfits. Kate also does regular "Coffee Date" posts, where she catches her readers up on her life. Her entire blog is so sweet and genuine, I love it.

Random // My planner has been my saving grace the past few months. It is incredibly detailed and color coded, but it helps we keep track of my insane life a the moment. I have the Kate Spade medium weekly planner. While I don't love this particular one, I love planners in general and am currently on the hunt for one I will use next school year. My favorites are the Simplified Planner or the Passion Planner. What's your favorite planner?

Looking Forward To // There are so many fun things happening in April, including Carolina Cup this past weekend, Greek Week this week, my boyfriend's fraternity formal next weekend, his military ball two weeks after that, then finally getting to go home for the summer at the end of the month! I cannot believe my second year of college is coming to a close, but I am so glad it is ending with such a fun month!

Happy April y'all!