Monthly Favorites · Uncategorized

My July Favorites.

Hello, friends! A happy Friday to you all! Can you believe it’s August already? My wedding is in two months! What!!! I’m so excited!!!

I thought that I would do a July favorites for this month, as it has been quite some time since I’ve done one! Here we go!

  1. Eyeliner! I’ve gone through many a phase with eyeliner. Middle school I was very addicted to black pencil eyeliner, messily applied to the top lid and bottom waterline. Then I moved onto black liquid liner in high school, and I went a little crazy with the winged liner there. And then, at the beginning of college, I did a little bit of brown pencil liner. And after that, I didn’t really do much with eyeliner. But for the past week or two, I’ve been getting back into liquid liner. I’ve had an Elf liquid liner in a navy blue shade for longer than I’d care to admit… but I’ve been putting a thin little line of it on my lash line. I thought it would look a little strange with my black mascara, but it really doesn’t!
  2. My kitchen table! I ordered this table a couple months back, but we finally had it delivered! I love this table so much, and I think it’s a very classic piece that we will have for many, many years. It seats six and has an insert that makes it quite a bit longer. We keep the insert in it at all times, so we don’t have to worry about storing it somewhere. (Ha!) I love how neutral it is, and that it will match whatever decor our hearts desire.IMG_3567.JPG
  3. L.L Bean Dress. This dress!!! I am so in love. It is so cozy, and even though I bought it only a little bit ago, it’s safe to say that it’s going to be a favorite for a very long time. Which is what I consider before making a purchase! And blue is one of my favorite colors, and one of the colors I think flatters me the most.IMG_3772
  4. Journaling. Although journaling is nothing new for me, I’ve been making an extra effort to make time to journal EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s such a wonderful way to work through problems you may have, or even to document the small joys in life. As much as we’d like to hope we’d remember all these wonderful memories, we can’t possibly remember every single day of our lives. And that’s where journaling comes in!
  5. Bar soap. I remember being a kid, HATING using bar soap. To be fair, the ones that foam and bubble are far more whimsical, but not as good for the environment, as I’ve learned. Bar soap requires little to no packaging, and can last you for such a long time! I love it!IMG_3767
  6. Brown Boots. I’m a fan of all things fall, and these boots just scream fall to me. And what’s even better is that they were less than ten dollars! Just like the dress I’ve listed, I foresee these being a favorite for many a year.IMG_3742
  7. Trip to Frankfort . This was such a wonderful day! I had such a lovely time going to Frankfort with Bobby’s family for the fourth. It’s such a cute little town, and being on the beach all day… pure bliss. I can’t wait to take another trip to the beach.IMG_3411
  8. Wedding bands. I was SO happy to find our wedding bands. And they are so beautiful, and so us. The fact that after the wedding, we’ll be able to wear them for the whole rest of our lives is so amazing! How blessed are we???IMG_3325
  9. Banana bread. Perhaps banana bread will be my claim to fame… although I cannot take credit for the recipe. Bobby LOVES when I make this, and I even made some for his boss the other week! And the smell of banana bread… is there a banana bread perfume? If so, I desperately need it.
  10. Anne of Green Gables! This book has been a favorite of mine since childhood, and I reread it for the first time in such a long time, this month. And no surprise here, I loved it just as much, if not more. A classic book that I think everyone should read. It’s such a lovely book to read when you want to fall back deeply in love with life.IMG_3604

Thank you so much for reading, my friends! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

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A Journey into Self-Love

Overcoming Perfectionism in Our Homes.

Hello, friends! And a happy Friday to you all! I hope that it is beautiful and sunny wherever you may be. The weather has been so lovely  the past couple of days, which is a wonderful change from how rainy it has been. I love myself a cozy, rainy day as much, if not more than the next person, but my goodness, after awhile… I’ve been soaking up all the sunshine I possibly can. That being said… it is certainly a rainy day today. Oh, well. I’ve been watching some really nice history documentaries the past couple of days, which is especially nice on a rainy day. In-between the unpacking, of course.

I had hoped that I would have the entire apartment all spick and span by the time Friday’s blog had come around, but alas, no such look. That being said, Bobby and I have made SO MUCH progress. I’ve been doing laundry like nobody’s business. We made the decision to do ALL the laundry, because the old apartment complex was so dang stinky. The hallway REEKED of cigarette smoke and it seeped into the apartment. And there weren’t enough windows to ever air it out!

I’m eager to show you the apartment once we’ve completely unpacked, but for now, I thought I’d write about overcoming perfectionism: in the home.

I absolutely adore organization and organizing a cabinet full of tupperware is my idea of a relaxing afternoon. However… I do have a tendency to organize myself silly. I want everything to be PERFECT. And when it isn’t, I just want to quit. Unpacking has been sort of a struggle for me, because nothing has a spot that’s 100% its own yet. I have to keep reminding myself that I just need to get everything put away first, and focus on the final organization later.

I know that I’m not the only one who feels this way. Perfectionism can be all too relevant in every single aspect of our lives, but perfectionism in the home is its own breed. An example I can use is my bed. It’s comfortable, the sheets are clean, and its even made! And yet, I still don’t feel great about it. For whatever reason, the comforter is still wrinkly, the sheets don’t match, and I haven’t cleaned the pillow cases yet! Not to mention that the comforter itself is more a winter comforter…

Yikes! All of that stuff is so shallow, why does it vex me so? It’d be so easy to blame social media for our need to have a perfect home, but these feelings go back much farther. They can go back to television, and magazines, and even just going to other people’s homes. Even if we don’t want it to be so, our brain naturally wants to compare things. It makes us realize who has a bigger tv, more expensive furniture, and who has more square feet in their home. And it’s so easy to get wrapped up in that. Frivolity isn’t ALWAYS a good thing…

Another example I have would be my seasonal dish cloths. I went through a phase thinking I needed one for every holiday and season. Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Fall, you name it, I probably have it. And the idea of displaying them in the wrong season? No way! Or how about displaying one with coffee stains on it? Certainly not!

I wish I could say I’m immune to such bouts of shallowness, but I’m not. I’m much better with it now, though. Stained Christmas dish clothes can wipe up spills just as good as an unblemished, seasonably appropriate one can, even if you are using it in June…

With this new apartment, I’m learning more and more to be grateful for what I do have. And becoming conscious of what I should be focusing on. I am so thankful to have sheets that are clean, counters I can clean up, and even more so, a roof over my head.

It’s so easy to fixate on how things look, instead of their function. The function is what is the most important. We must make do with what we have, and try to remain grateful for it all.

My bed may not be outfitted with the most expensive comforter, my pillows may be mismatched, and it may not have the most ornate headboard, but it is a clean and safe place for me to rest my head at night.

And I think we can still decorate our home and delight in the act of it, without needing it to be PERFECT. We don’t need to spend heaps and heaps of money on trendy pieces for our home to feel cozy. Heck, most of my favorites pieces that I have were either hand-me-downs from friends or family, found on the side of the road, or from Goodwill.

Decorating our home is a wonderful way to express ourselves, but it is not the only way, nor is it the most important thing to focus on when creating our home. I’m sure I sound like a broken record, but truly, all we can do is our best. Our home doesn’t need to be straight off an HGTV makeover show for it to be a cute and cozy home, more than worthy of having friends and family over. The home itself matters little, it’s those inside of it that are the most important.

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

Musings

Moving with Mattie.

Hello, friends! This blog is brought to you by an IPhone photo I took months ago, and a blog post predominantly penned on my smart phone. Not how I usually do things, but sometimes, we just have to make do with what we have. My laptop is packed away, my camera battery is dead, and I’ve had hardly a spare second today! I should be able to have a better quality blog post come Wednesday, but today has been a busy day spent packing and moving.

It’s so crazy to think that I’m moving from my little town of Mount Pleasant. I’ve moved a time or two in my life, but I’ve lived in Mount Pleasant for the past eighteen years. And today is officially the day. Well, technically tomorrow is the big move-in day, but yesterday was my last night at my little ol’ apartment. Tonight will be spent at a friend’s house. And then come 9 AM, move-in appointment!

I’m such a terribly sentimental person that I can’t help but wistfully think of every little thing as my last time before I move. I even felt a bit melancholy about it being my last time at the laundromat. If I let it get any further, the next thing you know I’ll be saying farewell to the dumpster that’s behind my apartment.

Oh, isn’t packing just the most dreadful thing? I’ve done my fair share of it, but I’ve never gotten any better at it. I definitely didn’t start the packing for this trip until waaaaay later than I should have. You never realize how much stuff you have until you have to shove it all into boxes and bags.

I’ll admit, the packing up of my fridge magnets made me the saddest, of all my packing done thus far. Bobby, ever so practically reminded me that there will be a fridge at the new apartment.

But that fridge isn’t this fridge!

There are things I will not miss, of course. How gloomy it was to only have one window in the whole apartment, how horrendous and prison-like it felt.

And I don’t want to give off the impression that I’m not excited for this move — I’m SO excited, but gosh, am I bad at saying goodbye.

That’s when I need to remember that it’s not a firm goodbye!!! It’s just a “see you soon”!!!

Again, this post isn’t like what I usually post, nor is it terribly long, but I thought it would serve as a good update for all of you, my dear friends.

Thank you so much for reading!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

Engaged Life · OOTD

Head to Toe: My Engagement Pictures

Hello friends! Happy Monday to you all! Today’s blog I wanted to do a little something different. It’s sort of like an OOTD, but it’s more so a breakdown of what I wore/how I did my hair/makeup for my engagement pictures! I am by no means an expert in fashion, hair, or makeup, but I do thoroughly enjoy putting looks together.

I’ve said many a times that it is NOT necessary to buy an outfit for EVERY occasion, but I will admit that I did buy a new outfit for these pictures. My clothes don’t fit very well as of late, and I wanted to feel confident during these pictures, so I did buy them new. Had I not waited until the last second, (the day before), I probably would have tried to find them at a thrift store, but alas, I did not.

I did, however, incorporate some pieces that I already had, so I didn’t COMPLETELY go off the shopping deep-end.

And off we go!

Hair.

I am not confident in my hair-styling abilities whatsoever, so I just straightened my hair. I don’t know what straightener I use, I’ve had it for years and years. I can’t imagine straighteners work all that different from each other, so this one doesn’t matter so much!

Makeup.

 I chose a pretty natural and simple makeup look, pretty much the same as the look I describe in this blog post. The only difference being that I took the color, Cyprus Umber, from the Modern Renaissance palette on my lash line. I don’t like how eyeliner looks on me, especially black eyeliner, so I choose to do a more subtle look. I like taking a little brush like this, and do a thin line along my lases. It creates a look that is both subtle and slightly  dramatic. And the brown makes my green eyes POP. I think it’s important when taking engagement pictures to choose a makeup look that is very close to your day-to-day makeup, just elevated slightly. They’re pictures that you’ll have for the rest of your life! You want to still look like YOU. It’s definitely not a time to experiment with vastly different makeup looks, because some looks photograph better than others. If you do want to do a look that is very different from your regular look, I recommend trying it out ahead of time, and taking photos of yourself. That way you have an idea of what it will look like in your engagement pictures!

Accessories.

Necklace: Bobby bought me this necklace for Christmas, so I can’t find the exact one, but here is one that is similar. I think that a simple necklace is perfect for photos.  It makes you look just a little more put together quite effortlessly. I seldom take this necklace off, so I didn’t even really think about not wearing a necklace! It’s important to make sure that your necklace matches with the neckline of the shirt you’re wearing. Some necklaces look better with a neckline than others. Just something to be conscious of!

Here is one that is similar to mine!

Pearls: I’ve always adored the look of pearls. They are so timeless, and I think it’s important for engagement pictures to feel timeless. I hope one day to own a pair of real fancy-pants lady pearl earrings, but for now, I’m a-okay with the ones I have. I believe in quality over quantity, but something like earrings, I can’t seem to justify spending heaps of money on. I’m fine with a handful of well-chosen cheap earrings. I generally opt for earrings that are more dangly, but again, I wanted to make sure things looked timeless, so, pearl earring it was! Below I’ve listed the exact pearls I  bought, and then a similar, cheaper, pair from Amazon.

The set I bought.

And here’s a cheaper alternative, using my Amazon Affiliate link!

Watch: Again, I wanted to choose an accessory that I thought to be quite timeless. I think that a delicate watch can be so striking, especially a faux white leather one. I’m not normally a fan of gold, or even a rose gold, but I found this watch to be quite charming. I think that if it were to be a silver watch, (which is generally my favorite) the white wouldn’t stand out as much. I think that sticking with one accessory on the wrists is a good idea. The star of the show should be your engagement ring! Pick additional pieces that are beautiful and simplistic so as to not take away the spotlight from that beautiful ring on your finger!

The watch I bought.

And here’s a cheaper alternative, using my Amazon Affiliate link!

Fake Nails: Speaking of the spotlight being on our rings… Arguably one of the most important things for engagement pictures: THE NAILS!!! My nails are generally in some sort of disarray.  Whether it be from me picking at the skin surrounding them, ripping them off, or even my sad attempt at giving myself a manicure. I generally go for red nails, but I thought that with my outfit being blue and white,  the red would make me look better prepared for a fourth of July barbecue, and not engagement pictures. So instead, I went with a  mauve pink color. I didn’t want to mess with with the nail salon or painting my nails myself, so I bought this pair of fake nails. I am 100% sure that I put them on wrong,  but they look better than my plain nails would’ve! So, success! I also included a nail polish color that is similar, in case you wanted to get them done at a salon or do them yourself! Not everyone is as inept at nails as me! (Ha!)

The set I bought.

And here’s an alternative, if you want a similar look with no fake nails!

Shoes: The shoes I wore are about five years old, from Cracker Barrel. I couldn’t find the exact pair that I have, so here are some similar ones that are honestly even cuter!

Option One.

Option Two.

Clothing.

Shirt: As I stated earlier, I’ve recently put on some weight. As a result, I have very few clothes that fit me correctly. I want to be able to be comfortable in the clothing I wear, especially for such an important occasion as engagement photos. When I do purchase something, I like to find items that are useful for me now, and items that could be useful to be if I were to fluctuate in weight again. A white t-shirt is such a wonderful option to have, and can be so flattering on everyone. Phew, that’s a lot of talk for saying I bought a white t-shirt.

Here’s the one that I bought.

And here’s a cheaper alternative, using my Amazon Affiliate link!

Skirt: As I mentioned previously, I want to purchase clothing that will serve me for a long time to come. This skirt is perfect for that, because it’s a true wrap skirt, so it will fit my waist at many different sizes. I also find this silhouette to be so flattering. I knew that I wanted to have a more fitted top paired with a looser bottom because I find it looks the nicest on me, especially in pictures. It’s important to know what works for YOU. These pieces that work great for me may not work for you at all, but maybe they will! Which is why I wanted to list them!

Here’s the one that I bought.

And here’s a cheaper alternative, using my Amazon Affiliate link!

And that’s about it, folks! I’m pretty sure that’s a recap of everything that I did/wore for these pictures! This is a different blog than what I usually do, but I had a lot of fun with it! I am not a fashionista, a makeup artist, or a hair stylist, but I enjoy it all the same!

If you do choose to purchase any of the products I’ve listed from Amazon, I will make a profit from it (with no extra cost to you!), as I am an Amazon Affiliate! No pressure on you to purchase anything, just wanted to give some options! ❤

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

 

Musings

A Writer’s Worst Nightmare: Writer’s Block.

Hello, friends! Happy Friday to you! I hope that this weekend proves to be refreshing and relaxing.

I come to you, my friends, less prepared than normal. I have 10 drafts of posts that I want to write, but can’t seem to execute them as I’d like to. My perfectionism comes out in full force in my writing. I want to write these blogs as well as I can, but it sometimes puts me at a freeze .

I think of little snippets of stories, poems, or blog posts, but can only seem to get a little bit out. It’s miserable.

Then, the spiral happens — I become convinced that I’ll never write anything good ever again. Not only that, but I tell myself that I’ve never actually written anything good ever.

This feeling, I’m sure can be shared with anyone who has a creative soul. It’s quite troublesome imagining ourselves as fraudulent in the field(s) we feel comfortable and confident in.

And then, there are other days when we have heaps and heaps of ideas, and there just doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day to create them all. Those are the most invigorating of days.

I am going to be speaking about writing, but you can, of course, apply it to whatever creative endeavor speaks to you.

I am of the opinion that one must write through the block.

Which isn’t to say that you shouldn’t write about things you aren’t passionate about, not at all. I’ve found that if I continue to write, I will eventually find something I find interesting. Even if that thing is writing about not being able to write.

In all of my creative writing classes, we do exercises that help us open up our mind to writing.

One of them that I find to be most helpful is setting a timer for a couple of minutes and writing whatever comes to mind. Even if it’s utter nonsense. Sometimes, you’re so fixated on an issue in your life, you’re not able to write about anything else until you are able to mull it over in your head and/or on paper.

Another good exercise is to compile a list of some of your favorite words. Oftentimes this will fuel your brain and you’ll be able to write a poem/ story centered around those words.

Another thing that I find to be SUPER helpful is to find inspiration in different forms of media.

I’m heavily inspired through poetry, nature, and short stories.

I think that consuming art of any media will help you create.

We do not exist in a vacuum, our work benefits greatly when connected to our world.

It’s much too easy to become frustrated with ourselves when we’re unable to create as much as we’d like to, but it’s so important to KEEP GOING.

It’s true, you’ll never write anything good ever again… if you don’t continue to write.

You’ll make your own nightmare come true if you give up on your craft, and what a terrible thing it would be to deprive the world of your creativity!

Being a creative-type is difficult, because we can often find ourselves being much too hard on ourselves.

For me, comparing my writing to my peers’ is like shooting myself in the foot. 

It hurts nobody but myself, and it does NO GOOD. 

If available, go to readings. Little gets me as fired up for writing as hearing other people’s stories. When I go, I always bring a notebook so that I can write down my ideas.

Which brings me to one of the most important tips of all — WRITE DOWN YOUR IDEAS.

Otherwise, you WILL forget them. It doesn’t matter how great of an idea it is, you WILL forget them. 

I cringe to think of all the ideas that I’ve lost because I’ve failed to write them down. This is especially true for when we wake up in the middle of the night after having the most bizarre dream. You think to yourself, “How could I forget this? It’s so weird!” Trust me, you’ll forget.

Sometimes, sleepy time Mattie leaves notes for awake Mattie that are utter nonsense, but sometimes… they give me inspiration for something really wonderful.

(A bad night’s sleep can result in a really great work of art.)

Another writing tip I have is to write about what interests you. It doesn’t have to be life-changing, you just have to find it interesting.

I used to be far too caught up in having my writing feel BIG and IMPORTANT. It just led me to not write as often as I would’ve liked to. Not everything has to mean something, although when you’ve taken as many creative writing courses as I have, it’s hard to NOT find meaning in everything. 

Thank you so much for reading, friends!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

Engaged Life · Photography

My Engagement Pictures!

Hello, friends! I hope that you have all had a wonderful Memorial Weekend! And yes, I have FINALLY gotten my engagement photos done! Thank you to Bobby’s wonderful sister, Mikayla, and his lovely cousin, Jaden for taking these photos/helping with poses! (I have two faces in photos: goofy face, and cheesy smile. I needed the extra help.)

I figured as long as we get our photos done before we’re married, we’re in the clear, sooo here we are! Enjoy! 😉

Thank you so much for reading!!!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

Travels

A Townie’s Guide to Downtown Mount Pleasant, Michigan.

Hello, friends! Happy Friday! I wanted to write this blog because I know that many high school seniors are graduating right about now, so I thought this blog could be helpful for anyone that’s considering CMU.

I’m pretty sure that the word townie is known by most, but on the off-chance it’s just a Mount Pleasant thing, we use it to refer to people who live in Mount Pleasant year-long. It’s generally used to describe people who grew up here and who also went to college at CMU — yours truly.

I wanted to focus on businesses that are local and unique to Mount Pleasant. There are, of course, many other lovely businesses, but I wanted to highlight some of  my favorites!

I present to you, my townie’s guide to downtown Mt Pleasant!

  1. Stan’s! If you’re looking for a place to frequent for breakfast, look no further! For anyone as enamored by small-town diners as I am, you will immediately fall in love. This is definitely a diner where everyone will learn your name, should you choose to go often. Bobby and I generally go on Saturday mornings. So yummy! I have fond memories of coming here after first grade soccer games, and thinking that their grilled cheese was the best one I had ever tasted. They also have pictures on the walls of historic Mount Pleasant, which I love looking at!
  2. Pleasant City Coffee! First, let me say that Pleasant City Coffee has one of the BEST flavors of coffee ever — their banana-nut latte. I almost always choose this drink when I come here. They also have a punch card system where after ten drinks, you’ll get a free one! For any of my fellow coffee addicts, you’ll get there sooner than you know it. I also love this place because every time I’ve gone, they’ve played the BEST music. I always hear some of my favorites here.
  3. Ponder Coffee! Ponder sort of counts for two because they have TWO locations here in Mt Pleasant! One downtown and one on campus. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to Ponder to study for exams, hang out with friends, or work on a blog. Both of their locations are also super cute, and I’ve taken more than my fair share of cute coffee pictures here. If you’re in the market for a good study place, look no further! Like Pleasant City, they have a punch card system that works for BOTH locations! Yay!
  4. Green Tree! For anyone who doesn’t know, Green Tree was my very first job! Green Tree is a wonderful grocery store that has an abundance of natural and local foods. My personal favorite part of Green Tree is the bulk aisle! I especially love the it because you can bring your own containers in and fill them up with whatever goodies you may find. Bulk spices come in handy too, especially when you need a spice that you may not need very often. You can get a pinch here and there and not feel so wasteful!
  5. Pure Vitality! This place offers so many unique things, especially for a small town like Mt Pleasant. They label themselves as a juice bar and a spa. I have yet to utilize their spa, but I have definitely had my share of their food. They have wonderful smoothies that I really enjoy because they don’t feel as heavy as smoothies that you may get at other places. They also have wellness shots, salads, and the best hummus that I’ve ever tried. This place is fairly new to our little town, so I would definitely encourage you to check them out!
  6. Redbloom Yoga! This is my absolute favorite place to do yoga. Everyone who works there is SO kind and they are genuinely interested in your growth. The prices are fair, and they have sales and discounts quite often. They provide you with cold water and tea. Every time I’ve gone, the class sizes have been quite small, which is great, especially if you’re new to yoga. A completely full classroom can be kind of daunting. They also sell wonderful homemade jewelry. It’s such a wonderful place to go, especially in the midst of stress-filled college. A nice place to relax. Plus! They have yoga mats at the ready in case you don’t have one, or if you forgot yours!
  7. Gray’s Furniture! For those that follow my Instagram, you’ll see that Bobby and I recently bought a table and a set of chairs. This is where we went! Before even talking about the business, I feel compelled to talk about the building. It is the most gorgeous building. It feels like a fancy New York loft. I know that sometimes they’ve held concerts in the upper levels. It almost makes one feel as though they’re in a Victorian mansion. The ceilings are absolutely gorgeous. What I really like about this place is that in addition to having new items for sale, they also have some beautiful antiques. As to be expected, some things are quite expensive, but there are also some things that are quite reasonably priced! They also have the most darling boutique inside!
  8. Brass Cafe! If you’re feeling like getting a little fancy, this is the place to go! It’s perfect for anniversaries, Valentine’s day, or even just to add a little glamour to your life! I’ve been going here ever since I was a little girl, and I gotta say, it never gets old! Every time I go, I feel like it’s the first time. The experience is just so wonderful, and lets you feel like you’re living in a much larger town than Mt Pleasant.
  9. Headliner’s! Finding a place that you trust to do your hair is difficult, especially when you’re a little shy (like me). I’ve been going to Headliner’s for over a year now, and I was able to go from a very dark brown, to a beautiful shade of blonde hair without ruining my hair. Every single person that works there is SO sweet, and they offer SO many services. I’ve even had them do my eyebrows, and for those that know me, know that this is a BIG deal. I don’t trust just ANYBODY with my eyebrows.
  10. Pisanello’s! If you’re looking for some yummy pizza, look no further! This is the BEST pizza in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. I know that this may be a controversial opinion, but not only do I love mushrooms on pizza, I like CANNED mushrooms best on pizza. And they have BOTH!!! Not only that, but they have the cutest little restaurant where you can sit and eat. They generally play oldies too, which I love. They also deliver, for those who are curious!

And that’s that! My top ten favorite places in downtown Mt Pleasant! I hope that you enjoyed, and for those that are new to the area, I hope this helped out!

Thanks for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

A Journey into Self-Love

Healthy Living Through a Child’s Eyes.

Hello, friends! It is Friday! HOORAY! Some weeks just seem to take the longest of times, and for whatever reason, this week has felt that way. This is a post that has kind of been forming in my mind for awhile. I’ve realized that many people, myself included, do not spend as much time outside as we used to. The busy lives we live can make it somewhat difficult to do this. I began to think of this in relation to how we handle exercise. Two different events helped me come across a little epiphany.

Number one: an Easter round of Eenie Einie Over. A game which NOBODY seems to know about. Anyone outside of my family ever play it? I’ve looked it up online and it seems like more people call it Annie-Annie Over.  Anywho. It’s been a game that my cousins, brother, and I have always played when we get together. We played a round on Easter for the first time in years and years. We used to play this game for hours and I don’t remember getting half as winded as I was during Easter. As adults we don’t often do physical activity just for the fun of it. Our activity is calculated into calories, sets, and reps. Or our activity is planned within an inch of its lifeat 10:00, we’ll take a hike, but I have to be back at 1:00 so I can do this and this and this. Which may be a slight exaggeration, but honestly, it’s pretty true to life.

Playing Eenie Einie Over made me realize a couple of things.

The first being how out of shape I am. YIKES.

The second being that I miss playing outside like I used to. It’s fun to be outside and to exercise. To make the conscious decision to allow ourselves to channel our inner-child and be silly and explore the world around us.

We often view exercise as a punishment for not looking the way that we want to, instead of it being fun and allowing us to be thankful for all our body can do. Everyone has different abilities, so what we’re thankful for WILL differ person to person.

I know that many people will disagree with me on this, but I don’t think the gym is the best place or way to become fit. I think that it can be utilized in a way that makes it quite beneficial, but I also think there are many other ways to get exercise.

Number two: On Wednesday, Bobby really wanted to play basketball, so we bought a basketball and went to the park. Something so simple, but we were able to get moving and have fun. Working out doesn’t have to be rigid. For me, I don’t ever want it to be. I know that there are some instances where it may need to be, but I just want to suggest that we start thinking like children again. When not busy, run outside and explore your surroundings. Revel in the world around you and what you’re able to do. Healthy living is so much more than what our bodies can or cannot do, it’s also about what’s going on inside.

Spending time outside allows us to care for ourselves physically and mentally. Walk trails, smell flowers, play a game or two.

Summer is (finally) coming and I’m so ready to take advantage of the beautiful weather. I get giddy when I think of all the hiking trips, camping adventures, and canoe rides I have in the future. Being able to exercise like a child, really allows us to regain a relationship with our mind, our bodies, and the world around us.

As a child, I loved being outside. I still do, but often I feel as though I need to plan out my time outside, but I don’t! And neither do you! Walk out your front door and ask your inner-child what they want to do.  Our hearts long to feel what they once did, we just have to listen to them. Sometimes when I get outside, I  just can’t help it — I want to skip, I want to twirl. Obviously, this is not always a possible thing, but listen to yourself! Really listen!

We have such an innate connection to the outdoors, we just can’t help it! I think that by listening to ourselves, we’re able to strengthen our relationships. If on a hike with yourself, you’ll be able to strengthen your relationship with your body, by giving it exercise. You’re able to strengthen your relationship with the Earth, by surrounding itself with its beauty. You’re able to strengthen your relationship with your heart. Listen to what it tells you. Oftentimes, we don’t let our heart speak with us, because it feels things that we may not want to focus on. Feelings aren’t always practical, which can be hard for us.

Spending time with others in nature is a great bonding experience as well. One that I don’t think you’d quite get if going to the gym. Have you ever tried having a conversation with someone while both being on the treadmill? Nearly impossible, haha! Being surrounded by beauty allows us to be more vulnerable with not only ourself, but others.

In conclusion: listen to the heart you had as a child. Allow them to explore the world, to learn, and to make relationships with others. It’s all too easy to ignore them, as the business of adult life grows louder and louder. Listen to your body, too. What does it need? Listen to yourself and be conscious of the splendor the world provides us. Sometimes, feeling small in the world is what we need. Not unimportant in the world, but just small. Our worries aren’t always life or death. A childlike perspective is sometimes all that we need.

I hope that you are having a great day! And a great weekend to boot!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

 

 

A Journey into Self-Love

Putting on my Face: My Everyday Skincare and Makeup Routine.

Hello, friends! Happy Wednesday! I wanted to continue our little head-to-toe journey. I started out with clothing and I wanted to do skincare and makeup next! I hope y’all enjoy! And please, let me know some of your favorite makeup brands and tips!

I will say upfront that I am an Amazon associate and as such, I will earn money from qualifying purchases, with no extra charge to you!  That being said, I am not here AT ALL to try and force products on you. I just wanted to show what I use in case you guys were in the market for new products. I also wanted to share some tricks that I’ve learned from my time wearing makeup.

Makeup is something that seems to cause a lot of divide. I want to say first and foremost that I don’t think that one needs makeup to be or feel beautiful. And some people do not feel confident with makeup on and that is absolutely fine. It’s totally your choice. Do what makes you feel happy and confident.

For this little post, I wanted to detail not only the products that I use, but how I use them.

Rose hip oil

Rose hip oil is something that I’ve only recently started using. I’ve seen so many people online using it and I wanted to try it so badly. I always thought that I had oily skin, but as I get older, I’m realizing that my skin is more dry than anything. Especially this past winter, it got so bad. I hated it, because when I put makeup on, my under-eyes and even my eyelids were all wrinkly and dried out. This has been something that has been SO helpful. I’ve been trying to stay extra hydrated so my skin doesn’t get that bad again. The bottle also says that it’s meant to fight wrinkles and fine lines. It also says that it helps with the appearance of scars. And I’m such a sucker for packaging, I hate to say it. The bottle is so cute with the dropper and  little roses it has in it! One feels extra glamorous when using this.

Pond’s Cold Cream

After I’ve let the rose hip oil melt into my skin, I’ll moisturize with the Pond’s. It is very moisturizing and also so good for sensitive skin. My skin for the past six months has been reacting to almost every makeup and skincare product. I tried out a new moisturizer and was broken out on my cheekbone for about a month. I’m already on my second little container of the Pond’s and my skin is so thankful. It’s so exciting being able to find out products that work for you. I’m such a picky person when it comes to such things, I want to keep trying new products until I find the most magical product. This Pond’s might just be it. I will say that after you put the cold cream on, you will want to take quite awhile before putting on your makeup, otherwise it’ll all just slide off. Unless you’re using it for a makeup remover, which it also does, quite well! I use the rose hip oil and the Pond’s twice a day, in the morning before putting my makeup on, and then right before I go to bed. My skin has never been softer!

Highlight/Blush

I’ve been using this same highlight for around a year now. The same exact one, it hasn’t run out yet! I know that you’re supposed to change them out every so often, but I just keep them until they absolutely run out… I still have so much left! And it’s so cheap! It’s meant to be a highlight, but I use it as a blush. I love wearing a lot of brush and tend to go a bit overboard on it. I put it on where you would put blush and where you would put bronzer, because I don’t really think bronzer suits me. I also make sure to add a little extra on my nose because I think that is so dang cute! I like that putting on blush acts as a somewhat more subtle contour. It also adds a bit more color into the cheeks, which is especially nice when you’re as pale as I am.

Foundation

I have just started using this foundation. Before this one, I had used the Too Faced: Born this Way foundation. I really like that this one contains SPF in it, because as someone who is quite pale, I burn VERY easily. I like a very natural coverage, and I find this foundation really does wonders. I usually apply foundation more like a concealer than an all-over foundation. I make sure to focus it on my eyelids, my under-eye circles, and any spots that need any extra lovin’. I generally like keeping my face very natural and letting some freckles peak through. I feel more me when my skin isn’t totally flawless. However, I must say, I do love having some extra help with my eye-bags, ha! I definitely recommend going to a makeup counter to find the perfect foundation match. Try as I might, I can’t seem to be able to match my foundation on my own. I’ve ended up with many bottles of foundation that do me absolutely no wonders. You also end up using so much more product if it doesn’t perfectly match because you have to drag it all over your neck/any other part that doesn’t match.

Blush brush

I’m not a fancy makeup guru or anything, so I use this sculpting brush for a little bit of everything. I use it for foundation, blush, and also on the rare occasions I use bronzer or highlighter. I think this brush is a super great one because it is useful for so many different purposes. I prefer putting on foundation with my hands, so this is really the only face brush that I use. I know that may be slightly controversial, but I find that my hands work in product better! It’s really important to have a brush that’s soft, because otherwise, when applying blush to your face, you’ll end up wiping off all your foundation. Also, it sure as heck doesn’t feel good using scratchy brushes!

Mascara 

This brand was sold where I used to work and I really grew to love it. It’s certainly not going to give you the longest or thickest lashes, but I really love the natural look it gives. I’ve always preferred a black mascara as opposed to a lighter one. I know that some people really love a brown mascara because it matches better with their eyelashes and eyebrows. Again, it all depends on personal preference! I also curl my lashes most days, making sure to be extra careful not to rip out any. It never gets any less scary!

Brow pencil

My eyebrows and I have been through thick and thin — literally. They’ve been good, they’ve been bad, and they’ve certainly been ugly. They’re quite dark and thick naturally. I keep them fairly natural, I pluck the middle of them and I also pluck any stragglers that may be around. Finding the brow shape that we feel best in is such an important thing. I know that when my brows are unkempt, I feel unkempt as well. My brows are naturally quite dark so I don’t fill them in too much, mostly just the tail of them. My eyebrows are also quite thick, but for whatever reason, they’re not terribly long. So I draw them on to be a bit longer as well. I’m not an expert by any means! Nor do I spend much time on them!

Lipstick 

For those that knew me in high school, they’ll remember my red lipstick days. I still love me a good red lipstick every once in awhile, but now I lean towards something more natural. I really like pink for lipstick, something that’s just a shade or two different than my natural lip color, be it lighter or be it darker. I really like this lipstick because it feels extra moisturizing. I’m such an obsessive chapstick user that this is super helpful to me. I like to have a chapstick in pretty much every room of my apartment. If I want to get extra fancy, I’ll go for a red but this is perfect for my everyday makeup. When I want a super duper natural look, I’ll apply lipstick, then put on chapstick over it, and then blot that off. 

Eyeshadow brush

Again, I am not fancy at all when it comes to makeup, so I use this brush for all my eyeshadow looks. I just make sure that my brushes are soft enough that they don’t disrupt all my makeup that’s on my skin. I also make sure to wipe them off in-between colors so I don’t end up with a huge mess on my eyelids!

Eyeshadow 

As I’ve said probably a million times, I like my makeup to be quite natural. Which is quite a change from how I used to be. I used to not be caught dead without heavy eyeliner and red lipstick. Which is so funny because now whenever I put eyeliner on, I feel as though it doesn’t suit me at all! Which is why I tend to stick to eyeshadow if I’m feeling like adding a little something extra. If I wear eyeshadow I usually stick with a dark brown in the crease and a lighter color on the lid. I like beige or glitter for the lid. Usually a light gold one works best for me. I like choosing colors that make my eyes pop. I have blue-green eyes, so I like browns, golds, and even sometimes a purple. I remember going to the Clinique makeup counter the summer before I went into seventh grade and the woman put purple eyeshadow on me and I was so amazed at how green my eyes looked. Everyone can wear whatever eyeshadow color they want, but if you want your eyes really to pop, look towards the color wheel!

Powder

Another case of, “WOW! This packaging is adorable.” It works so amazing though. I like this one in particular because it has a slight purple tint in it which helps with lightening the under-eyes. I used to use powder on the entire face because I was worried about getting oily, but nowadays I only put powder on the places I feel really need it, my eyelids, my under-eyes, around the nose, and my chin. Otherwise, I just let my skin hang out and do what it wants. And let me tell you, it feel so much better than putting tons and tons of powder around my face. Again, some may feel differently! Which is okay! Makeup is a wonderful way to express ourselves!

 

Another little tip that I have is to look towards your family. You may not have family that look 100% like you, but it can often be quite helpful. For example, I look to my mom for makeup inspiration. She is naturally much more tan than I am, but we have similar eye color so I take inspiration from her eye looks. She’ll use some dark green eyeliner on her eyes and it looks quite striking. I’ve tried it a couple times on myself and I really enjoy it!

Makeup can be a great thing to play with, and some people get SO creative with it! I love scrolling through Instagram to see what looks people are able to come up with. I may not be quite at that level (YET!) but I enjoy makeup all the same!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

 

Musings

How Much Should we Share Online?

Hello, friends! I hope that your Wednesday is going well. Almost to Friday! I’ve been working on this blog post for a little while now. I wanted to make sure that it was executed correctly. I wanted to be very careful to not hurt anyone’s feelings with it or anything of the like. I understand that life is different for everyone and that the internet plays a very different role in people’s lives. As always, I can only speak from my own experience.

I think that for everyone out there, the amount shared on the internet will vary, which makes perfect sense. It’s never in good taste to bully others online, but besides that, I understand that everyone has varying levels of comfort with what they share online. My mom, for example, has absolutely no social media and she couldn’t be happier about it. I one time mentioned that I saw a meal she pinned on Pinterest and she was shocked to find out it was public, “Oh, I don’t like that at all!”. I think that we have to find what works for us, but in a way, of course, that doesn’t negatively effect us. It’s not kind to make posts bullying others, but it’s probably also not in our best interest to make posts complaining about jobs, or even posting things that could deter employers from wanting to hire us.

It’s so tempting to overshare on the internet. From personal experience, it’s especially tempting to overshare when we feel lonely. I don’t really do this anymore, but I used to quite a bit. I would post whenever I was feeling negatively, especially when I was feeling poorly about myself. I would frame it as a joke, but it really never was. It’s right at our fingertips, an abundance of people, all listening ears. I think that every person and situation is different of course, but this can be a tricky thing to navigate. When do we go from being honest online to being too honest? When I’m feeling down in the dumps and am tempted to post online, I will instead do a couple of things.

I will journal how I’m feeling. I am a strong advocate for journaling and I think that it is especially great for moments where we want to overshare. Before the days of the internet, there were diaries. I’ve been journaling since I could write and let me tell you, there are many journal entries I’m glad are not on the internet. Nothing mean or anything, but just plain embarrassing. Journaling allows us to get our emotions out in a therapeutic and private way.

Or, I will call/text a friend to talk about whatever is bothering me. Most of the time we just need to get it out of our systems. I know that when we feel lonely, sometimes we feel as though we have nobody to talk to. While talking to someone who cares is the number one choice, journaling is a close number two. Again, every situation is different. I am not here to judge others for how they handle their feelings, I just want to give some options.

I think it’s important for us to periodically review our own social media and ask ourselves if it’s representing us in a way that we see appropriate. People change and sometimes you posted something that you thought was fine, but you review it and no longer want it online. I don’t think that there should be anything wrong with this. Our social media, after all, exists for us. If we don’t like something that we posted, it is within our rights to delete it. We need to be comfortable with what we are posting, because it’s often people’s first impression of us. I know that whenever I’ve started a new job, my co-workers will always tell me that they stalked my Facebook or Instagram before I started. I’ve also done it when other new people were hired on. I think it’s important to make sure your online persona is one that you feel comfortable it.

We face a dilemma that’s unique to to this generation. It can be very hard to refrain from posting things, because in the moment it seemed like a good idea. For me, a question I try to ask before posting is: Would I be comfortable talking about this in person? Again, this won’t apply to every situation, but I find it to be helpful. I cringe to think of some of the stuff I’ve posted in the past, but you live and you learn.

An example that comes to mind is when Bobby and I got engaged. I wanted to post it on Facebook right away, I was just so excited about it, I wanted the whole world to know! Instead of doing that right away, I did quite a few phone calls and texts to those that I’m very close to. The ones who would have felt sad if they had found out via Facebook.

I think that we must think before we post, even if it’s not inappropriate, will it make someone sad? Is it something that you should try to tell those close with you first, or is it okay for them to figure out on Facebook? It obviously differs situation to situation, person to person, but it’s definitely something to consider.

I think another thing that is very important is to be our genuine self on our social media. I think that for everyone, their online persona versus how they are in real life will always differ slightly. I WISH I was as cheerful as I was online, but sometimes, you don’t feel cheerful. I don’t think that’s being disingenuous, it’s just normal. Being genuine is important in our real life and in our internet lives.

There are also topics that some may find taboo, while others do not. I don’t think it would count as a topic per say, but for me, I don’t like to swear on my social media. I don’t swear in real-life, so for me, it doesn’t really translate to my online posting either. Some people are comfortable swearing online, which is fine. It is their personal decision. Again, what people are comfortable with differs greatly from person to person.

It’s so great being able to share so much with those on our friends lists, but I do think there is something to be said for NOT sharing everything. I think it’s important to have some moments that are private and shared between a couple of people and not the whole internet. However, yet again, I will stress that this differs person to person. I just think that we think before we post. Some people will think over a post and decide they’re not comfortable with it, where others may be in the same situation and find it 100% appropriate to post. It’s really at our own discretion, but I do think it’s important to always think before you post.

Thank you so much for reading! Have a wonderful day!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae