Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Fall Feels.

I love everything about summer. The summer has my birthday, tanned legs, and weekend trips to the beach. It has watermelon and brightly colored toes, and sweet sangria on the porch with friends. And even though I spend most of the summer sweating through all of my cute clothes, it’s safe to say that summertime holds a big place in my heart.

But then there’s autumn, with her cinnamon scents and pumpkin flavored everything, her flannel shirts over leggings and cozy slippers in the morning. Football tailgates are in full swing, and blanket scarves are back with a vengeance. With autumn comes the holiday season, couch cuddles, and despite the chill, there is warmth, and an overwhelming sense that everything is going to be just fine.

I know the Florida temperatures are still hovering in the 90s, and everyone is probably sick of hearing about the return of PSL's...but there's something about this season that makes everything feel exciting. And in a world filled with so much craziness (especially as of late), I am certainly not one to deny myself the simple pleasures in life. And for me, that simple pleasure is autumn.


Tuesday, September 20, 2016

On Cleansing Your Life.

I like to think that I'm generally a pretty happy, positive human being. I like to make others feel loved and appreciated, I'm not a fan of confrontation, and the idea of offending someone I care about shakes me to my core. But I'm nowhere near a perfect person, and it's easy for me to veer off course - to create my own personal drama, to engulf myself in somebody else's, to complain my way into a black hole of bitterness.

Because of this, I think it's so important to regularly cleanse your life in every sense of the word. I know when we hear the word "cleanse," most of us probably think of the latest juicing fast, doing yoga for 24 hours straight, or drinking pureed cucumbers to reset our bodies after a weekend of drinking or eating a large stuffed crust pizza all on our own. Proper physical cleansing is great for your mind and body after a seemingly toxic weekend, but I think there's also something to be said for ridding yourself of emotional toxins...starting with your environment and the company you keep.

When I feel myself slipping into a deep, dark abyss of griping, I try to take a mental step back and figure out what's really going on. What's sparking my negative attitude? Am I surrounding myself with genuine, positive people? Is this type of behavior what I want to be remembered for? I make a mental note of these answers, and I adjust myself accordingly.

So next time you find yourself acting "like a little bitch," if you will, make an effort to cleanse your life in every aspect. Clean out your closet and donate some clothes, take a hot shower and then a long nap, go for a run and make a healthy snack...or take a look around and close a chapter on a friendship, a job, or simply a way of life that is no longer serving a positive purpose in your life. Your future self will thank you for it.


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Keeping My Electronics Chic & Protected + GIVEAWAY!

Disclaimer: I was sent a custom laptop skin and custom iPhone case from CaseApp, but all opinions are my own.

 When it comes to back-to-school shopping, I've always been the type of person to hit up the supply aisle long before new clothes. For me, there's nothing better than a fancy set of highlighters, pretty colored pens, and fresh notebooks to start off the year. I'm a firm believer that keeping yourself organized really sets the tone for the school year (and the workforce life!). From keeping up with my weekly planner to getting my school bag together each night before my 8 a.m. class, I try to stay on top of my game as much as I can for a smooth semester.

Something else that makes for a smooth semester? Making sure to give my electronics a little TLC. I bought my Macbook Pro a few years back during my senior year of college. It was my first major purchase, and it's been my pride and joy ever since. Little did I know that I would be starting graduate school just a few years later, so it's safe to say that my laptop is going to be my lifeline for the next two years. Thus, I am extremely cautious about keeping it in mint condition, especially when it comes to scratches. You have to protect your investments, am I right?

That's why I'm absolutely in love with my custom laptop skin by CaseApp. Not only is the neutral marble design super chic, but it keeps laptop clear of any scratches. That's a win-win in my book!

I also got an adorable custom iPhone case to protect - you guessed it - my lifeline, AKA my iPhone 6 Plus. I could have gone with a matching marble theme, but I thought it was so cool that CaseApp allows you to create a case using your own photos! I decided to go with one of my favorite photographs I've ever taken: my whale sighting in Malibu, California. I love that it acts as a functional display of my photography...and it keeps my phone from cracking! That's especially important for a broke college student like me. The middle of the semester is not when I want to drop big bucks on replacing a cracked screen.

Now CaseApp wants to pass on the good fortune with a discount code for YOU: Use code SAMANTHAROSESAYS20 for 20% off your order! There are so many fantastic design options to choose from, and you can even upload your own photos to personalize your custom skins and cases to your personality. The code is good through September 24th, 2016!

What's even better than 20% off your order? A FREE ORDER! CaseApp wants to give you a free custom laptop skin or custom phone case (up to $40). Just enter in the Rafflecopter contest below, and you're in! The winner will be contacted on Saturday, September 17th.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Tea Talk Tuesday | Volume 3.

Just a little talk over some tea with friends. It was a chai tea for me this morning, but I'm already feeling like it should have been a coffee...

School is certainly progressing, and although the weeks are busy, they are just flying by. I've started clinic groups and I have my first individual client session this afternoon. Super exciting! Sometimes I still can't believe I made it into this to just get through the next two years! Thinking about the amount of time I have left is a little daunting, so I'm trying to take it all one day at a time.

Pumpkin everything is in full swing. I've consumed two Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes, attempted my own dairy free pumpkin creamer, and made pumpkin cookies. I've even purchased a candle from Ash & Ember called "Pumpkin Everything." No shame in this game, my friends. We exchange pumpkins for peppermints in December, so there's only a few months to enjoy the glory that is an orange gourd...and I plan to partake in every moment of it.

I'm in the midst of planning a couple of trips (with all the money I don't have). Ryan and I have been thinking New York to visit his family in the beginning of December, and then I'm hoping to book a trip to visit my friend at Vanderbilt in Nashville in late October/early November. I'm not exactly rolling in cash right now, but I also don't want to hinder myself from making memories. YOLO, and all that.

I haven't been reading all. No good! I've restarted the Harry Potter series, but I haven't even finished up the first one yet. But I am on season six of Gilmore Girls, and we just finished Stranger Things (love!), and I hope to start This Is Us with my girlfriend Mandy Moore on September 20th. Sometimes I'm on a reading kick, sometimes it's a television show's obvious what the last month has been for me. Any shows or books you've been enjoying lately?

What's been going on with you lately?


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

9 Secrets for a Happy, Healthy Relationship.

I'm about to get real cheesy (just for a second!) to say just how happy this weirdo makes me. Seriously, it's crazy for me to think that we are just about to close in on three years. I've dated a lot of guys, so I think it's finally safe for me to say that I've zeroed in on the formula for the happy, healthy relationship I always dreamed of having. 

What makes me qualified to give relationship advice? Not much. Having said that, we rarely fight, we laugh a whole lot, and something must be working to last this long, right? Thus:

  1. Communication. When he's pissing me off for one reason or another (doesn't happen often but it certainly does happen), I don't beat around the bush, and I expect him to do the same. Same goes for when he makes me happy - I always make it known.
  2. Respect. A little respect for each other's long term goals, short term decisions, and even friendships goes a long way.
  3. Personal space. Living together means not a whole lot of "alone" time...especially when you're living in an 815 square foot one bedroom apartment. Sometimes when Ryan comes home from a tough day at work, he needs his time to zone out and play video games. When I need my quiet time to study, I plug in headphones or go to Starbucks. Sufficient time apart means more happy time together.
  4. Planned date nights. We've actually gotten much better about these, because we fell off for awhile (broke girl problems). We'll pick one or two nights throughout the month and actually go out and do something together; I've even picked a day two weeks in advance and said "let's go out for pizza on this night." This past weekend we went to the USF football game without a group - just each other. It's definitely important for us to switch up the ol' dinner and frozen yogurt date routine...mostly because Ryan only eats frozen yogurt 1 out of every 10 times I ask him to go with me.
  5. Quality time. Date nights out are key, but like they say, "it's the little things that matter most." We always have at least one television show to keep up with (or binge watch) together, one of us makes breakfast for the other at least once a weekend, and sometimes I just tell him to shut up and snuggle with me (no matter how much he hates it, because IDGAF. Princess probs.).
  6. Validation. This is something we struggled with in the first year of our relationship. I'm the kind of person who needs verbal and physical validation...and he's the exact opposite. Taking the time to communicate what we want/need from each other to feel secure has changed our relationship in the very best way, which has led to quite literally zero trust issues. Yes and yes.
  7. Patience. Sometimes I want to punch him in the face, but I fight the urge. Sometimes he wants to put duct tape over my mouth (I assume...). Deep breaths, time out. It's in these dark times of growing impatience that I remind myself to "be patient, be sweet, be kind." We all have our trying moments...we just try not to take them out on each other.
  8. Friends. Having mutual friends is great, but I love being able to plan a night out with just my girlfriends, and I don't mind when he goes out to play golf on a Saturday morning with his. He might be my best friend, but there's something to be said for a little girl (or bro) time.
  9. Mutual understanding that relationships are not fairy tales all the time. I'm rarely swept off my feet by grand gestures. We don't fawn over each other 16 hours a day. He doesn't count the ways he loves me on the regular, and I don't massage his feet nearly as often as he'd like. But when I'm upset and can't find the words, he's there. When he needs to talk, I'm the person he can always turn to. And I think that's far more important than perpetual doting and gift giving. 

What keeps your relationship going strong? Any tips?


Thursday, September 1, 2016

Hello, September 2016.

Welcome, September, and greetings from Hurricane Hermine!

The university closed today due to the tropical storm (now turned Hurricane). While our neighboring county, which is closer to the coast, has been getting a good brunt of the storm's bands, our little Tampa suburb has been getting a whole lot of nothing. I'm talking overcast skies and maybe a half inch of ran. I'm still hoping for high winds and some thunderstorms, because I absolutely relish in this kind of weather. Sigh.

So it's safe to say September is starting off with a bang, and I couldn't be happier to greet her with open arms. Unfortunately, Florida and Fall do not really go hand in hand, as humidity is still awful as ever and the temperatures aren't likely to drop below 90...but a girl can dream, right? I'm already planning on ordering my first pumpkin spice latte before clinic training tomorrow morning, and I'm on the hunt for the perfect fall scented candle.

August had a lot going on for me. I went to pool parties, and beach parties, and tried my best to partake in all things summertime. I watched a whole lot of Gilmore Girls. I also finally started my grad program, and I met a whole new group of friends that will be fighting (and loving) this academic battle with me. My life has changed, and I'm still alive to tell the tale!

So with that, helloooo September. Hello to my first session with my very first client, undoubtedly becoming overwhelmed with required readings and treatment plans, and clinic work. Hello to even more Gilmore Girls (sorry, Ryan). Hello pumpkin spice everything (sorry not sorry) and the beginning of the end of the year. Crazy to think, right?

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