Monday, March 5, 2018

that overwhelming, scintillating feeling of change

I have an overwhelming feeling that everything is going to be changing very quickly, very soon.

At the beginning of a brand new year, we all toast to the idea of change, to better things, to new adventures. January 1st marks the commencement of new resolutions, and everything feels unknown, and the changes we anticipate, the trips we organize, the plans we make feel attainable...but they also feel far away.


Friday, February 16, 2018

thoughts on gun control - it's time to wake up

Most days, I don't enjoy confrontational speaking. But I can't pretend like a story about Valentine's Day or my most recent shopping trip is relevant right now. Enough is enough, and sometimes "political" topics need to be addressed.

"Guns don't kill people; people kill people."

I'm going to cut the niceties and the exceptions to the rule here and call out the complete and utter bullshit that statement represents. Because that's exactly what it is: absolute bullshit.


Monday, February 12, 2018

st. pete eats | review of MidiCi Neapolitan pizza

Last month, I was graciously invited to St. Pete's latest and greatest pizza place, MidiCi, an authentic Neapolitan pizza company from the one and only Los Angeles, California. Just a heads up, Los Angeles - finders keepers!

MidiCi is located right outside of Tyrone Square Mall (which, as a St. Petersburg native, can I just say how much I'm loving all the revamping they've been doing?!) but don't let that throw you - it sits alongside a couple of other fun shops and restaurants, so it gives off more of a local street vibe vs. a shopping mall. As you walk in, you're greeted by an open concept kitchen featuring wood burning ovens (for their delicious pizza, of course) and their fresh, non-GMO ingredients on display. The chefs and cooks are so friendly, so feel free to take an extra second to watch them work their culinary magic.

I'd been salivating over their craft cocktail menu since getting invited to the event, so I immediately took the opportunity to shimmy on up to their beautiful marble bar tops. The bartender was so knowledgable about every drink on the menu, and as soon as I mentioned that I was a giant fan of margaritas (because, hello, have you met me?), she recommended I try the Angel's Margarita, later to be followed up with the Devil's Margarita...because obviously you can't try one and not the other!

The Angel's Margarita was on the sweeter side, made with tequila, triple sec, blackberries, lime, and simple syrup - such a classic, crisp taste. Later on in the meal, I switched over to the Devil's, which simply swapped the blackberries for fresno chili about a game changer! I was a big fan of both margs, but I think the Angel's took the cake.

While the drinks were on point, the food was the real treat at MidiCi, especially (shocker!) the pizza. But before we dug into the pizza goodness, we nibbled on the house cheese board and the MidiCi House Salad: seasonal greens, baby arugula, grape tomatoes, parmigiano-reggiano, and balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Still dreaming about it.

I also feel like it should be noted that each meal was consumed in front of this gorgeous twinkly-light the middle of the restaurant. How cute?

And now for the main event - the pizza, of course. I was trying to save room for dessert later, otherwise I would have absolute gorged myself on every option. Our table was given the House Pesto: housemade pesto, fresh mozzarella, and parmesan. I normally go for pizzas with tomato sauce, but the housemade pesto absolutely made this dish and it didn't need any good! Next time I go back, I definitely want to try out their double pepperoni and classic margherita pizza.

If you think I wasn't going for their dessert options next, clearly we aren't very close. Dessert = life. I try to fight my sweet tooth, but most times it gets the best of me (reason #2345982 I'll never have visible abs). MidiCi's dessert is 100% worth the price of admission, especially the Signature Nutella Calzone: Nutella strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, balsamic reduction (with the option to add ricotta, yes). We also got to try their authentic Italian gelato and goooood lawd, guys, every flavor was a dream.

Not in the St. Pete area but still dying to try MidiCi? You're in luck - it's actually a chain! Check their website to find a location near you. In St. Petersburg, they're located at 2424 Tyrone Blvd, St. Petersburg, FL 33710. I live over in Tampa, but my parents live a whopping 10 minutes up the road from this little gem, so you better believe I will be back ASAP. If we didn't have plans for Valentine's Day already, I'd be making the trip sooner rather than later.

I had so much fun at this event - thanks again, MidiCi, for the invite! It was so fun to connect with other bloggers in the area, especially this babe from Keeping Up With Kahla:

Have you been to MidiCi before? Or if you're local, have you been to this location yet? Let me know what you think!


Monday, February 5, 2018

do only what you love.

February is the month of love in all its forms. So this month, I challenge you to do only what you love, and ignore the rest...except paying bills and, you know, all the necessary other stuff that no one loves but you have to do, anyway. Let's stay within reason here.

(Background photo by Brigitte Tohm on Unsplash)


Thursday, February 1, 2018

what i tried in january.

I keep reading about how January dragged on and on for a lot of my friends, but it just flew by for me. Between starting up the new semester and working 35-40 hours a week at my externship (plus my actual paying job two nights a week...), I pretty much blink and it's the end of another week. With all that, I wanted to do a little round up of things I've tried this month:


Monday, January 22, 2018

how we downsized to 650 square feet | sold, donated, trashed.

I don't know about you, but when a new year begins, I always have the urge to declutter my life in a multitude of ways. As I take down the Christmas tree and put away all of my holiday decor, I usually take some extra time to go through my closet, desk drawers, shelves, etc. to evaluate what should come with me into the fresh new year, and what shouldn't. 


Monday, January 15, 2018

recap: my first week of externship!

Two years ago this month, I started volunteering at Tampa General Hospital, a major teaching hospital in my area. By "volunteering," I really mean observing, because aside from sanitizing a few toys here and there, I mostly just sat in the corner and intently watched therapy sessions. I was beginning my second semester of SLP pre-requisites with only a few hours of observation at an elementary school under my belt, so I was still super green in the field and an SLP's scope of practice. In fact, before volunteering at TGH,  I don't think I even realized all that a speech-language pathologist does, especially for adults. Long story short, the adult/geriatric side of SLP is crazy interesting (for me, anyway). From working with neurodegenerative diseases to traumatic brain injuries, head and neck cancer to stroke patients, no day or session is ever the same...and it was while I volunteered that I fell in love.


Monday, January 8, 2018

current skincare favorites | winter 2018

Skincare, especially facial skincare, is something that's important to everyone. Helllooo, your face is the first thing someone notices about you, and you're likely going to have that same face for the rest of your life. Thus, it's important to take care of it.

Even though I'm still a broke-ish graduate student, I try my best to incorporate high quality products into my skincare regime. And by that I mean that I usually ask for the fancy stuff for holiday/birthday gifts. I use a little bit of high-end stuff mixed with drugstore purchases,

I rounded up a few of my current skincare go-to's, from serums to masks to peels and micellar water:
[note: this post contains affiliate links!]

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate - "A nighttime facial oil that visibly restores the appearance of skin" ( 
I requested this little nugget for Christmas after hearing a lot of positive reviews from other bloggers. I absolutely love the smell, and it definitely hydrates my skin without making me break out. Note: this is not an anti-aging product. When I first starting using it, I thought "visibly restoring the appearance of skin" meant it was going to get rid of my forehead wrinkles (it doesn't). According to Sephora's website, it's best for dryness and dull, uneven texture. I've seen a big difference in that regard, so I would recommend if you're in the market for that kind of serum!

GLAMGLOW SUPERMUD Clearing Treatment - "A skincare mask designed to visibly clear the complexion" ( 
I know this mask isn't a giant revelation...nearly everyone I know has heard about GLAMGLOW masks, but I absolutely love this one! You can literally see the gunk being extracted from your pores as the mask oddly satisfying. I've had a couple of breakouts here and there, and this mask totally clears it up. It's a little pricier than I'd normally go for, but I have the mini version which is only $24! I rarely do a whole face mask - just problem areas - so it lasts a lot longer, too.

Silksence Blackhead Mask - In a nutshell, it's a peel-off blackhead remover/mask. Ryan randomly bought this peel-off mask for us from Amazon...ha! I've only used it once (similar to the mask above, I use these types of things pretty sparingly!) and it was kind of weird, but certainly did the trick! I will say that it left a little bit of residue after peeling, but a few blots of a damp washcloth cleared it up quickly. This one is definitely cost effective at around $11...but I wouldn't use it on your entire face the way they have it advertised. YOUCH.

Yes To Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Micellar Cleansing Water - "Removes makeup, cleans and moisturizes skin all-in-one, without rinsing" (
Prior to purchasing this, I'd been using Garnier's micellar water and was not a fan. A few friends suggested I try the Yes To brand's version, and I love anything charcoal related (hence my above products!) so I opted for this guy. The pump is unlike any other product I've ever used - you put your cotton ball or wipe on top of the bottle (without flipping it over) and just push twice, and voila! It's ready to use. I will say, I'm not sure I'd purchase the charcoal again, solely because I use it as a makeup remover, and while the charcoal doesn't stay on your skin, it does stay on the cotton ball. This made it tough for me to tell if I was actually removing eye makeup. I think next time I purchase it, I'll try the cucumber or coconut version.

Botanics Organic Toning Spritz with Rosewater (super cheap at Target right now!) - "Purifies and refreshes skin after cleansing. This toner delicately, yet effectively, removes traces of makeup, leaving the skin revitalized" (
Who doesn't love a good toning spritz, especially in the form of rosewater? I spray this on my face before I go to bed, and I feel instantly refreshed. It's about as simple as that! Plus, it's a cheap thrill, and you know I'm all about those.

Erno Lazslo White Marble Dual Phase Vitamin C Peel - "A powerful two-step peel packed with super nutrient vitamin C to exfoliate, brighten, and moisturize skin" (
On the subject of cheap thrills, this next product is certainly not that...but if you have extra $ to throw down on skincare, I highly recommend this little set. I received this complimentary from Influenster a few months back, and I am obsessed. The peel (step 1) smells divine, like pure oranges. After massaging that into your skin for a couple of minutes, you apply the activator (step 2) which smells not quite as divine. This nifty little combo jump-starts the natural collagen process while simultaneously reducing dark spots and zapping dullness aka everything I need. Again, it's pricy - but worth it!

Not pictured: Skin Laundry Wrinkle Release Repair Treatment with Retinol  "A two-in-one nighttime anti-aging treatment plus moisturizer featuring the power of retinol" ( 
I make far too many funny/weird/ugly faces on a daily basis, and I have the wrinkles in my forehead to show for it (or am I just getting old? yikes!). While I'm a firm believer in the idea that wrinkles mean a life well lived (so long as they aren't sun damage related...), I prefer to keep them at bay. This little guy has helped reduce my fine lines on my forehead, doesn't have a heavy scent, and is super lightweight. 

What skincare products have you been loving lately? I'm in the market for an eye cream, so if you have a favorite, let me know!


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

2018 | the year of graduation + my goals.

Oddly enough, I'm actually thrilled to say goodbye to the holiday season. When October hits each year, I think to myself, "the best time of the year! pumpkins! halloween! ghouls!" Then November comes along, and I think to myself, "the best time of year! a great, big feast! thankfulness! friendsgiving!" Then December rolls around and I'm like "the best time of year! christmas, hanukkah, pretty trees, gift exchanges, all the treats!" By the end of that three month span, I am down for the count.

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