Planning the Trip

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I’ve been planning this trip for a while as a graduation present to myself, and it seems like it’s finally coming to fruition!

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It’s been incredibly exciting outlining the trip and putting together an itinerary, but also extremely headache inducing!

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(Current mood)

Either way this trip is finally happening!
My sister and I will be backing through Europe for 2-3 weeks in June, starting in London and making our way though France and down Italy! I think the hardest part is going to be narrowing down the list of places to see as I feel it could be endless!

I’d love to hear any travel advice you guys have as this will be out first trip overseas!

Also thanks to The Savvy Backpacker for your awesome website that makes planning so easy, and to my friend Megan for the awesome travel journal!

Who Wore It Better:Danny Kaye Edition

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Wore this chic outfit the other day that felt very reminiscent of Audrey Hepburn in Sabrina… (I had red lips and a messy half-up do’ to add a Parisian vibe)

I got many compliments on it, yet I couldn’t help feeling more like Danny Kaye in White Christmas performing Choreography as the day went on…you know the song. “The theatre! The theatre! What’s happened to the theatre!” ANNNND now it’s stuck in your head…

Anyway I felt it was a hit. Danny really gave me a run for my money and he is totally working that beret…but what do you think? Who wore it better? Comment below!

*side note: I most definitely sang that song and performed “modern” (read:strange) dance moves for my co-workers all day. Gotta keep it light ya know!

Snowed In

So it snowed here in Kansas City last night.

Not too much, but enough to cause me to be sufficiently trapped in my neighborhood and thus forced to stay bundled up inside all day-definitely not complaining though!

It was a perfect excuse to spend some much needed quality time with my sister!

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(shopping at the Plaza at Christmas)

Speaking of my sister, let me tell you a bit about her.

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(at the salon Christmas Party)

First of all she is my person. She’s the constant in my life who never wavers and is always loyal. I can’t imagine a better friend, so it’s kind of crazy that we ended up being sisters.

She’s the most kind, sweet, thoughtful & hilarious person who always is supportive, yet never hesitant to call me on my crap. Best of all she goes along with my crazy antics and inspires me to be a better person everyday.

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I’m lucky enough to have had her as my best friend almost my entire life (I’m older), and I hope all of you have a person who you can count on no matter what.

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(shopping shenanigans)

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(detective work)

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(full cat mode)

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(celebrating her college acceptance)

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(campus tour after Kayla got accepted)

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(animal versions of ourselves-guess which one I am?)

You get the point.

Normally I’d spend the snow day playing in the snow and building snowmen-or snowcats in my case (complete with snow mouse)…

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but instead we decided to make pasta and have a Harry Potter marathon-something I’d always recommend, snow day or not.

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Here’s to spontaneous Mondays!

The Kindness of Strangers

Last week someone said something silly to me that kind of has had me thinking for the past few days about the impact other people’s words can have on you.

I was at the salon, just going through my day, when a client walked in to buy a product. We were having a standard small talk conversation when she stopped and looked up at me and said “You look  so lovely! Like Princess Katherine!” It was startling and funny at the same time and we laughed about it, completed our transaction, and went about our day.

But later I couldn’t help but think of her compliment. It was so sincere and thoughtful-very unlike the standard compliment we often give to others.

It always amazes me how much of our day is spent making meaningless conversations with people. We as humans have this amazing ability to communicate the depths of our soul with others, and yet because of certain social conventions or our own timidness we often limit ourselves and just follow the societal norms of talking about meaningless things like the weather.

So instead of forgetting her words and moving on, I decided to internalize her heartfelt compliment and make a meaningful effort to let my words have a purpose. I spent the last week endeavoring to notice the specifics of those I encountered during my day, and pay them a wholehearted commendation. The effects were  startling-you’d be amazed how people light up when you do something as simple as hold the door for them and wish them a good day or tell them they have lovely hair. Not only did it bring them unexpected joy, but it made my heart light and content the entire week!

So that’s my challenge to you. Be mindful of those around you. Remember that they are people just like you, going through the same challenges of trying to lead a good and happy life you are. Think of how nice it would be if a stranger wished you a pleasant day or gave you an honest compliment-and truly meant it. Remember the impact you have on others and how powerful your words can be. Connecting with others requires effort, can be scary, and forces you to put yourself out there (much like writing a blog), but in the end the interactions we have with others mean the most to us and have the power to change lives-you get to decide if it’s for the better or worse.

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I snapped these after her sweet words so as to not forget the way they made me feel and to encourage me to spread that love to others.

Go out and spread love.

Bachelorette Weekend & Meatless Monday Veggie Eggrolls (on a Tuesday)

Hi all! This post is a bit late but I’m still recovering from a bit of the flu that’s been going around; it seems like everyone is dropping like flies from this nonsense!

I spent this weekend celebrating two of my favorite people’s upcoming weddings! Suffice it to say a combined bachelorette party was twice the fun, and taxing enough to require an entire Sunday to recharge!

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Love love love these ladies!

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Selfie crazy.

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This weekend was jam-packed with activities so after a much needed (yet rare) Sunday nap, I decided to juice the plethora of fruits and veggies I had lying around to replenish all those lost electrolytes and what-not! (There is nothing like fresh juice for an immediate pick-me-up!)

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After a green machine juice I was ready for a bit of a project so I decided to make veggie eggrolls! This was my first time making these so I used a derivation of my mom’s classic eggroll recipe and they were spectacular!

Ultimately these were a bit of a project, but totally worth it! I imagine you could use any number of veggies in these, but I opted for bell peppers, zucchini, onions, and jalapeños (I would have used mushrooms too, but mine were a bit too sad looking).

Here we go!

You’ll Need:

Veggies-I used 3 large bell peppers of various colors because you eat with your eyes, am I right?

2-3 zucchini squash

1/2 medium onion

1-2 cloves garlic

2-3 jalapeños (adjust for your heat preference)

Eggroll wrappers

Olive Oil

Canola/Soybean Oil Blend for frying

Salt & Pepper to taste

Step one:

Prep your veggies!

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Chop! Chop!

Step two:

Sautée your veggies.

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First I sautéed the onions and garlic in olive oil for about 3 minutes and then removed them and set aside-be careful not to burn the garlic,I’ve made this mistake before and it is not pretty. I then put the peppers in with a bit more olive oil on medium heat to soften them up a bit first since zucchini cooks so quickly.

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Next add the zucchini and cook till translucent. Finish off by adding the onions and garlic back in for a few minutes to incorporate the flavors. Season with salt and pepper.

*At this point I removed the veggie mixture and cooked the jalapeños separately since not everyone likes things as hot as I do. Also be advised when cutting jalapeños not to touch your face and be wary of any cuts you may have on your hands, because that will burn like the dickens! Wash your hands immediately afterwards people!

Step three:

Prep your station.

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At this point you’ll have to be speedy as the eggroll wrappers dry out quickly! Keep a little ramekin of lukewarm water nearby to moisten your fingers and seal the wrappers. Place about a tablespoon full of the mixture into the eggroll wrapper (add jalapeños if desired) and fold like a mini burrito. Seal last edge with water and place eggroll in a pan on medium heat with the Canola/Soybean Oil. Keep an eye on these guys as they brown and don’t over crowd the pan. Cook evenly on all sides and voilà!

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These lasted all of 30 minutes and paired very nicely with a smokey aioli that was made with Vegenaise and Sriracha-I reccomend slicing up some avocado to balance out the heat factor!

Hope you all have a lovely week!