Wanderlust Wednesday: Italy

29 October 2014

The historic town of Montalcino. After reading Renato's Luck I knew I had to visit the slow paced hill town in the beautiful Tuscany. A site of medieval fairytale perfection speckled with vineyards, orchards, ancient oak trees and scenic country roads. I can't wait to head off the beaten path to this beautiful hilltop town.

Located on the Italian Riviera, this picturesque fishing village is a major destination for a lot of people and normally that's something I would shy away from but how can I not visit this beautiful place? A stunning crescent moon shaped bay, historic castles, beautiful churches - there's so much to see, I can't wait to visit this town.

The Grand Canal in Venice
Because freaking DUH. There's something magical about traveling through an ancient city by waterway. All the shops and restaurants and has anyone seen photos of this CRAZY bookstore called Libreria Acqua Alta? Definitely at the top of my Italian destination list.

Cinque Terre
Another Italian Riviera destination that is a beautiful collection of five unadulterated Italian towns nestled in the cliffs and rugged coastline. As Rick Steves said, "a fascinating tangle of pastel homes that lean on each other like drunken sailors." Beautiful words, right? I can tell I'm going to need an abundance of memory cards to get me through this region.

Bike Tours through the Scenic Tuscan Countryside
I haven't decided on what bike service I'm going to use (if I use one at all, I might decide to try and be brave and navigate myself) but I can just see myself riding a bike (or vespa) through the Italian countryside stopped at scenic olive groves, orchards and vineyards. I really need to hone in on my photography skills so I can really do this region justice.

Thermal Springs in Saturnia
I mean, would you just look at it? I don't even think this one needs words. Who wouldn't want to relax in the beautiful natural thermal springs of Saturnia. I've never visited any hot springs even though we have some right here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest - I can't decide if I want to wait until I'm somewhere foreign to pull my hot spring v-card or venture up to the one's in my own backyard right now!

All photos c/o Pinterest

Anastasia Beverly Hills Eyebrows

27 October 2014

A few disclaimers before I get into this one. Firstly, you know those days when no matter what you do you can't get your eyeliner to set right, or your blush to blend properly? Well, I happened to be having one of those days in the above photo except it was my left eyebrow having the problems. No idea what it's doing here or how it happened but it happened. Second, my lazy is out of freaking control in this photo. It's weird, I don't have it in day to day life unless I'm crazy tired or drunk but somehow, here it is. But you know what, I love my eyes so I'm just going to embrace the shit out of this awkward photo. Moving on.

EVERYONE has heard about Anastasia Beverly Hills either for their brow products or their newer contour products. And if you haven't heard of her, what the hell rock have you been living under? So, being that these products are pretty affordable but not so inexpensive you're comfortable blowing the money without really trusting the product - I thought I'd do a little demo of how each one looks on me. Now, I know not everyone does their eyebrows fully filled in and a lot of people aren't going to like how I fill in my brows, I'm just trying to show you how these products work for me. Unfortunately, I am the victim of teenage idiocy and severe overplucking that I'm trying desperately to remedy (it's a work in a progress). So, without further ado - here we go.

Brow Wiz Pencil in Soft Brown

Although I clearly forgot to comb my brows here, the brow wiz is definitely a product I could not do without. I generally use this as a base by putting it sparingly throughout my brows in short little strokes and then using the brush to blend it out. A lot of people complain about it being brittle and breaking off, but if you only have a small amount of the pencil exposed at a time I don't see how it can be an issue.

Brow Powder Duo in Soft Brown

I really like the brow powder duo as an addition to my current routine but could never use this product alone like in the above photo. I find that the "soft brown" is quite red, so when I repurchase I will go for a different shade. However, for how I currently use this product (in the header photo) I just use it to fill in and darken the tail of my eyebrow. A little goes a long way so I can see this lasting my into the next ice age.

Dip Brow Pomade

I actually just tried the dip brow pomade for the first time last week after falling in love with the pencil and the brow powder and I have to say, this one really blew my away. I'm still kind of learning what application type works best for me in terms of how I apply this but I love how clean the lines are and how I can blend it out to make it a little more sheer at the inner portions of my eyebrows. I can definitely see this becoming a staple in my eyebrow routine, especially since it lasts forever and doesn't come off easily.

On a day to day basis (and in the header photo), I use the brow wiz as a base and then fill in the tail with the powder. But now, having used the pomade I might start experimenting with that and see if I prefer that. I hope this helped at least one person and if you've ever used Anastasia brow products, I'd love to hear your thoughts below! Happy Monday!

Wanderlust Wednesday: Germany

22 October 2014

Germany's Winter Train
One of the things at the top of my list to see in Germany is the scenic train ride from Innsbruck to Garmisch-Partenkirchen. I know this starts in Austria, but it then makes its way through the German Alps and it looks like the Hogwarts Express. Really, any red train making it's way through snow capped mountains is on my list of must see destinations. Has anyone ridden this route?

Berchtesgaden National Park
Can you say B-E-A-utiful? Alpine farming at its most traditional finest. With hiking trails for everyone's skill level this well preserved national park is easily on my list.

Okay, does this one even need a disclaimer? I mean, I'm not even a beer drinker and Oktoberfest appeals to me.

Nuremberg Christmarket
Or Christkindlesmarkt, is on the very tip top of my Germany Wander Wishlist. With more than 180 christmas market stands featuring traditional toys and treats that are sure to bring out the Christmas spirit in anyone.

And not far behind the Christmas market, Rothenburg. Located on the Tauber River, this fairy tale like town embodies the perfect picture of what you would imagine medieval Germany to look like. Wander livestock, medieval stonework, overpriced shopping - what more could you ask for?

Black Forest
A photographer's dream, the Black Forest is a beautiful wooded wonderland straight out of a Grimm brother's fairytale. I'm big on photogenic landscapes and would love to explore this dense forest.

All photos c/o Pinterest

Outfits I'm Loving: Fall Fashion Finds Under $30

13 October 2014

Fuzzy Gray Sweater $14.67 / Red Square Studs $21.27 / Long Sleeve Turtle Neck $14.90
Gold Bangle $17.97 / Navy Dress $24.99 / Green Midi Skirt $29.90 / Black Mesh Insert Skirt $15.17

The only thing better than going shopping, is going shopping and not coming home feeling broke and guilty. Am I right? Even this weekend, I found this beautiful coat over the weekend in Seattle and I fell in love but felt SO guilty about spending that much money and really - it's not that much. I think I'm just so used to thrift store prices that when I go into real brick and mortar name brand stores I'm just blown away.

Autumn and Winter fashion is great because everything is all about layering and mixing and matching patterns and textures. I love how versatile all these pieces are and they all just have that really nice comfortable look to them. I can totally see myself lounging around the house in this dress with some leggings and fuzzy socks. Or sipping hot cocoa in that fuzzy sweater? Bliss.

It's not quite gotten into Washington's cold season yet, today was pretty warm about 65 but I know it'll be here soon and I can't wait. I spent the weekend helping my little sister shop for a homecoming dress (she picked this) and hunting for the perfect pumpkin at our favorite pumpkin farm. We always go to a cute little farm near our house and drink apple cider and try to navigate our way through their Alice in Wonderland themed corn maze. Then we trek out into their pumpkin field until we find the perfect one. I always pick my pumpkin based on the stem - what about you guys? Hope you all had a great weekend!

That Time I Decided To Travel The World

15 September 2014

It's my personal opinion that there are two types of people in this world. People who don't have any interest in traveling and people whose entire existence revolve around traveling. Can you guess which one I am? The one thing I have always known with resounding certainty is that I want to travel. I'm never sure what I want to be when I "grow up" or where I want to live and what I want to major in but I've always known I need to travel. Not want - need. I know that if I don't, I will regret it until the day I die.

A couple of months ago I had my proverbial quarter life crisis mixed in with some existential meltdowns and I came to the conclusion that I needed to stop living in the future. Someday I will travel, someday it will happen. Instead I decided to take charge of my own life and make it happen. Granted, my actual departure is still a year off, I know now that it's happening. It's really happening.

Right now, my daily activities pretty much consist of working one of my three jobs and sleeping. That about sums it up. This weekend was a rarity for me, in that I took three days off in a row. But, I needed some down time and I really missed seeing my family. So, now that my little staycation is out of the way I'm going back to the grind of working 60 hour work weeks and putting almost all of my extra money into my savings account.

Once I'm a little closer to my end goal I plan on doing a post on exactly how I managed to save up enough money to do what I'm doing - which I guess I should tell you about now. Next October I am leaving to backpack Europe for a year. And that's just the beginning. After that I plan on coming home to apply for my Visa so that I can teach English abroad somewhere. The location for that is still pending (I have my eyes on Turkey or Indonesia).

So, hopefully that explains my inactivity over the past couple of months but my plans are to keep updating with occasional beauty and fashion related post but also to include travel related posts. I want to document every moment of my life and share it with all of you and I plan on doing just that! Once I have something worth sharing. I set up a Go Fund Me campaign in case you feel compelled to donate to the cause for which I would be SO grateful. I hope you all are having a great afternoon. By the time you read this, it will be Monday so - Happy Monday. And here's to following your dreams and fire in the blood.
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