Prepping for the work week on Sundays

I’m going to be totally honest, on most Sundays my social calendar is completely booked with visitors, day trips, or travel. “Sleepy Sunday” with Netflix and pancakes just isn’t how I roll. But here’s the deal – when I can – Sunday evenings include a complete routine that gets me ready for my work week. I’m a firm believer in the importance of starting the week in the right mindset to totally #killit.

1. Meal Prep & Plan

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Grocery shopping on the weekend (specifically Sunday) is a HUGE waste of time. Fruits and veggies are picked over, everywhere (Costco I’m looking at you) is a zoo, and just trying to stock up on food for the week feels like attending a concert. I tend to either do my grocery shopping on Mondays after work.

On Sundays I plan what I’m going to make for the next week and make a grocery list. If I’m completely out of food in the fridge by Sunday night, Monday I’ll eat lunch at work or bring something simple like pasta. Planning a week in advance allows me to stress less about what I’m going to eat the rest of the week.

2. Set intentions for the week

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On Sundays I look at my calendar (work and personal) to see what’s going on the next week. 5 meetings back to back on Wednesday? Plan to bring lunch from home and wear something comfortable. Thinking about these little details ahead of time will help you avoid the “oh my gosh what is happening?? My brain is short circuiting” reaction.

I also ask myself “what do I want to accomplish this week?” Making that checklist is so fulfilling. It helps me get in the mindset for accomplishing a week’s worth of tasks whether its for blogging, seeing friends, or work.

3. Check the weather and plan your attire 

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In California weather can change drastically over the course of a week. There is nothing worse than running around frantically in the morning looking for things to wear. I find that when that happens (aka I’m unprepared) I’m in the wrong mindset when I get to work. On Sundays I’ll check the weather and take a quick look at my closet to see what the options are. I don’t plan all my outfits, but at least I have an idea of the potential looks I can create.

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Welcome to 2018: Setting New Years Resolutions that you can actually achieve

We are so close to 2018 that I can smell it. New year, new you as they say. I can’t believe how quickly another year has gone by. I don’t know about you, but every new year I sit down and make a list of what I want to accomplish in the next 365 days. This year I’m still not sure what exactly I want to accomplish, but I have determined that my theme for 2018 is to go with the flow. (more on themes in a bit) So today I’m helping you welcome 2018 with some tips for creating new years resolutions that you can actually achieve.

Reflect on your accomplishments & past goals of 2017

2017 was a crazy, amazing, beautiful year. I experienced a new state, then moved back to the Golden State (but to the north), traveled to 7 countries and 10+ cities, “leaned in” to my career, and really pushed myself towards happiness and self-improvement. My mantra for 2017 was

Jump into the unknown & be comfortable with being uncomfortable

And while my other resolution “to stop being so hard on myself” didn’t exactly come true, I’m still proud of what I achieved. You may have achieved all (or none) of your 2017 resolutions. And that’s okay. What’s important is the reflection and how you move forwards. Ask yourself the following:

  1. What did you achieve?
  2. What did you not achieve?
  3. For the things you didn’t complete, why do you think you didn’t accomplish it?
  4. What would you do moving forwards?

Pick a theme

You can call it a theme or a mantra or an intention. Whatever you would like to call it, I think it’s important to have something that ties all your resolutions and helps you work towards an ultimate goal. A few examples to get you started:

  • healthy lifestyle
  • push yourself
  • adventure

Make your goals obtainable & easy to track

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I’m all for having a big imagination and reaching for the stars. But if you create resolutions that are impossible to obtain, you’re only setting yourself up for disappointment. And if you’re disappointed too often, that can effect your perception of yourself, your career and those around you.

Set small obtainable goals that can help you move towards your theme. In tech we often talk about “S.M.A.R.T.” when we talk about setting goals. That means:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Results-focused
  • Timebound

By using smart, you’ll end up resolutions that are easier to digest and to track.

Write it down

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Lastly, write it down. I think this step is incredibly important so that 1) you don’t forget what you want to do and 2) you actually feel compelled to do them. I believe that writing down your resolutions make them all the more real.

Have a great holiday season darlings!

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Simple Winter Style Formula

Hi P&P fam! I can’t believe we are T-3 until Christmas. I literally haven’t finished my Christmas shopping yet. EEK. It’s been so long since I just posted an OOTD and did a little life update. The last few months in the Bay Area have been a whirlwind of SF trips, mingled with settling into Silicon Valley & work. I will say, one thing that is weird is having what I like to call “half seasons”, not quite sun 365 days a year, but not Seattle/East Coast traditional seasons. Hence, when I assumed it was “winter” and wore this look to Le Marais Bakery in SF for brunch (without checking the weather report), I was low-key sweating.

Dressing for winter can be difficult with having to brave the cold and trying to be fashionable all at the same time. So today I’m sharing a simple formula that works for me even on my laziest of days :

Base layer (black or neutral) + statement bag + warm accessories

So let’s break it down.

BASE LAYER

For me the base layer typically includes a pair of black jeans and black turtleneck or shirt. It matches everything. It’s the best way to get the most use out of your accessories & coats. But I get it, we can’t wear black on black for 3 months straight – so feel free to make your base layer anything neutral (think: jeans, brown, beige, gray).

STATEMENT BAG

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A statement bag is the fastest and easiest way to look chic without putting in too much effort. It brings a pop of color to the neutral look and adds a little je ne sais quoi. And while I love what some brands like Gucci are doing to make your bag a piece of art, Shein and Amazon have some great alternatives that won’t break the bank.

WARM ACCESSORIES

I typically invest in a couple high quality scarves and hats that are in the neutral colors. For trendy accessories, I tend to hit Forever 21 & Marshall’s at the beginning of the season. Prices are super reasonable and you can try out a few different colors and looks.

 

 

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Your Instagram Guide to Seattle

Nowadays they say “Instagram or it didn’t happen.” Maybe it’s because we live in a world filled with gorgeous images. Since I moved to Seattle I’ve been on the hunt for the coolest Instagram spots. While some are more obvious than others (think: Pike Place), these spots are sure to have your followers jealous and your friends asking you “where is that?!” I also like to consider it a fun way to explore the city.

PINE & 11TH [ CAPITOL HILL ]

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Karya Schanilec Photography

The building in Capitol Hill on Pine & 11th is every bright color aficionado’s dream. It’s a block of bright colors with different designs. You can see the wall in action in a few of my previous posts (find them here, here, and here ).

BAR MELUSINE [ CAPITOL HILL ]

I talked about Bar Melusine in my post on Lindsey Arnold for the Inspiring Girlboss Series – but Bar Mel is a Seattle blogger (and anyone that loves beautiful aesthetic) classic. Think: great lighting, great food, and great decor.

SEATTLE DOESN’T SETTLE MURAL [ HOTEL MAX ]

This mural is located in an alleyway next to Hotel Max. It’s cool art, but disclaimer: you can’t pose in front of it because it’s so high up on the building. But definitely worth a visit if you’re walking around downtown Seattle!

FRANKIE & JO’S [ CAPITOL HILL ]

Frankie & Jo’s is a “all plant-based ice cream” shop in Capitol Hill. Get ready for some wild flavors like Beet Strawberry Rose. Their palm tree wallpaper is a great backdrop for your ice cream & you.

PIKE PLACE MARKET [ DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ]

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Chelsea Bree Photography

While adding Pike Place to this list seems eye roll worthy, it’s a Seattle classic with some gorgeous IG-worthy items – the sign, the gum, wall, and the flowers.

SEATTLE CENTRAL PUBLIC LIBRARY [ DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ]

There’s a reason that this library has made the list of most beautiful libraries in America. It’s a museum meets library and absolutely gorgeous. Be sure to check out the highest view point and the library shop.

GEORGETOWN TRAILER MALL [ GEORGETOWN ]

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The trailer mall is hidden in plain sight in Georgetown. It gives off some major vintage vibes and has some unique finds. It’s also the perfect backdrop for a photoshoot.

CHIHULY GARDENS & GLASS [ DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ]

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The Chihuly Gardens are another of those Space Needle-eque stops (I mean you can even see the Space Needle through the window), but the Glasshouse is mesmerizing and must visit.

PRESERVE & GATHER [ GREENWOOD ]

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I am a sucker for beautiful walls. If I see one I know I need a picture in front of it. Preserve & Gather in Greenwood is reminiscent of the 60s when that tiffany in blue and gold was a seriously fabulous color combination. T god it’s back because I’ve always been a lover of Breakfast at Tiffany’s. This wall is just perfect for some lifestyle coffee pics.

UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON [ UNIVERSITY DISTRICT ]

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Try to visit the University of Washington in the spring while the cherry blossoms are blooming – it’s absolutely breathtaking. People flock to see them, so if you’re wanting to get some great shots, visit early in the morning. Even if it’s not spring, it’s still worth walking around to take in the gorgeous architecture. The Suzzallo library looks like a scene out of Harry Potter and is also a must-visit.

SKAGIT VALLEY TULIP FIELDS [ MT. VERNON ]

This is another seasonal one. But the Skagit Valley Tulip Fields/Festival isn’t only the perfect backdrop for a shoot, but just the perfect day trip destination for spring. It’ll make you want to get lost in the fields for hours.

LADY YUM [ 6TH AVE DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ] 

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Lady Yum, located near (on?) the Amazon campus downtown Seattle is something out of Alice in Wonderland or something equally fanciful. Between the uniquely beautiful decor and amazing treats, this is great spot to come for macaroons & champagne. Suggestion – lighting isn’t the best at night, so try to visit during the day for the best photos.

I will most likely be adding to this list as time passes. In the meantime, what do you think should be added to the list?

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Sleigh the Season: 6 Christmas Date Ideas

I love the fall and winter seasons because it’s cozy, festive, and makes you just want to do Hallmark Movie inspired things. Something about dates during this season are just so much more special than the rest of the year. Maybe that’s why they call it cuffing season? So today we’re talking about 6 Christmas Date Ideas to celebrate this holiday season.

CHRISTMAS DATE IDEAS

1. Hunt down the best hot chocolate in your city

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By researching the best hot chocolate in your city, you might find some unexpected spots that serve amazing treats. We discovered amazing hot chocolate (rose flavor) in a part of San Diego that we had never be to. You can even go on an adventure and try out a few different places, or if you’re more of a homebody, pick up some gourmet hot chocolate and marhmallows, and enjoy at home.

2. Visit a Christmas Tree farm

Snow in the mountains and a Christmas tree farm is extremely cozy. Pick up a little tree or just go to enjoy the sights and take a few photos. If you’re like us where the farm is a parking lot, it’s still fun to bring out the camera and pick out a tree.

3. Decorate for Christmas

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Nothing says Christmas like a little decorating. Throw on some Christmas music, fuzzy holiday socks and get decorating! Budget hack: wait until a few weeks before Christmas as decor will be ~30% off. Even better? Prep ahead for next year by shopping Christmas decor after the actual date and items will be about 75% off.

4. Make ugly Christmas sweaters

Thrift (or buy new) a sweater that will be the base for your project, and then figure out what type of design you want to do. Places like Michael’s are a good spot to pick up the materials for this DIY project. Looking for inspo? Here are some good ideas!

5. Visit an ice skating rink

Bonus points if you wear your new ugly sweater 🙂  It’s also fun to visit an outdoor rink or a place that isn’t open all year round. For example, San Diego’s ice skate on the beach or San Francisco’s Union Square.

6. Make Christmas Cookies

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Or you can “make” these from Trader Joe’s

There’s a few options for this one. If you’re completely not the baking type, you can either 1) by pre-made cookies to decorate 2) Buy cookies and just do the fun part – eat. But I would highly recommend baking and decorating. Find an easy recipe here.

What are your favorite holiday date ideas?

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