Friday, September 28, 2018

September Favorites

I’m going to start by saying that for a month filled with so much change, September has been a really great month. Between moving, starting a new job, and trying to find my way around a new there are lots of new favorites to have. 

For starters, I’d say change would need to be a favorite. I’ve been so happy in Birmingham so far and am really excited about this new “chapter” of life. I am loving my house, roommate, and job and am excited to start making more friends and explore different parts of Birmingham. While I definitely like routine, I’d like to think that change in some capacity isn’t something I am super resistant to. I am definitely feeling at peace with my decision to move away from teaching and take a risk moving some place new especially since I have been so happy here. 

I know I mentioned these on Monday, but honestly, I could write a whole post on my love of Perfect Bars. I love that they are refrigerated, have tons of protein but don’t taste like protein if you’re familiar with that distinct taste, and come in a variety of flavors. Since I work longish hours Monday-Thursday, it’s nice to have a filling snack in the afternoon that isn’t unhealthy as I’ve been trying to go and workout after I leave. I love these bars so much that I’ve gotten to the point where I buy an entire display box of 8 bars off of Trader Joe’s shelf. 

At work, I am on the computer a lot and have found my eyes feeling a little bit strained. This was the perfect reminder for me to bring the blue light glasses I have to work to make the light from the computer a little less intense on my eyes during the day. I’m thinking about ordering another pair to keep at home since I’ve found how much this help.

Another work related favorite, legal pads have become my go-to for writing things down. I use them to brainstorm blog posts, work instagrams, as well as write to-do list, and any messages from customer calls. I like that they have lines to keep things nice and neat but are also easy to tear pages off of once I’m finished with a previous page. Nell used these a lot in college for studying, and I can definitely see their appeal for that as well.

Because I am sent stuff try out on occasion, I realized during my move just how much stuff I have. Although I donated a lot of it, I tried to come up with ways that I could use some of the things I had been gifted while still simplifying my life. One of the items I had 2 of was a hair dryer. I had been sent this Panasonic hair dryer for a campaign in the spring and decided that between the 2 I had, it was my favorite. I decided to take the other one to my parent's house so that when I packed to come home, I wouldn't have to pack a hair dryer. Since I went home before moving to Birmingham where this new hair dryer was, I kind of forgot about how great it is. Something about how powerful it is combined with the fact that it's relatively quiet and shoots cold hair at the same time as hot air to smooth your hair makes it magical. 

Sticking to the topic of hair, I have been using the Amica Straightening Brush this summer and am truly impressed. This brush is meant to replace a straightener since it has the same sort of hot plate but also has bristles so that as you brush, it straightens. I love that I don't feel like I'm suffocating my hair between two hot plates when using this and that it helps to keep some natural volume. I've found that using this instead of a straightener in the morning saves some time which is a major win.

My skin has been all over the place this month with breakouts and then feeling super dry. I've had my eyes on this mask for the longest time but never wanted to bite the bullet due to price. When I was especially fed up with my skin this month, I decided it was time to give it a try. Although I really wouldn't consider it a mask (it's much more of a heavy lotion), it's amazing how hydrating this has been for my skin. Lately, I've been using it once a day because of how dry my skin felt, but once that's under control using it a couple times a week will continue to help hydrate my skin without using so much of the product at once. 

I know, I know, I am so late on the podcast game. Everyone has been obsessed with podcasts for so long and I'm only just beginning that fascination. I listen to them some at work and have gotten through a couple really great true crime podcasts that friends had suggested. So far I've listened to Serial (Season 1), S-Town, Dirty John, and Up and Vanished (Season 1). Y'all gave me so many more great recommendations on instagram (that I'll also share in a blog post too) that I'm looking forward to listening to as well. 

One thing I've really missed since being in such a consistent routine from last school year was my morning quiet time. I try to allow myself 15-25 minutes in the morning to get back in bed while still in pajamas to drink my coffee, eat my oatmeal, and use my 5 Minute Journal and do some reading. I recently started New Morning Mercies after hearing so many good things about it and am glad I did. I have been through Jesus Calling a few times, and while I love it, I wanted something new. There's a specific message on each page, so it's a relatively quick read and has been such a great way to start my mornings. 

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