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Coffee Talk – Catching Up

Coffee Talk – Catching Up

Good Morning everyone!

 

I’ve been MIA for far to long! I promise I’m trying harder to remember to blog. I always write it down in my planner to include it in my day but studying for a second portion of the CPA exam is already taking up most of my free time. I have quite a bit to catch you all up on, as well as a few posts in the works for throughout this week and next. I’m going to try to plan a few “themed day” posts that I can follow each week, which hopefully will help make content creation a little more fluid. I have a bag review coming up for you guys, a clothing box subscription to share, a huge life update, and a recap of a super fun weekend I had in Boston attending the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) gaming tradeshow. A little bit of fashion, a little bit of lifestyle, and a little bit of nerd. I’m excited to get more of a schedule down and really start putting out some more content. I really do love writing these posts, taking photos and editing the media for them, and in general flexing the few creative muscles I do have to come up with these. I’m excited to get back into it!

 

 

xo, Karli

 

 

Trend Alert : Slip-On Shoes

Trend Alert : Slip-On Shoes

Hey Everyone!

I apologize for being so dormant the past few weeks. It’s been hard squeezing in any free time while I’ve been studying before I sit for the first section of the CPA exam next week! I’ve been spending almost all of my free time studying and sleeping. I don’t have the highest of hopes for this first sitting. I’m pretty sure I rushed it a little honestly. But I’m going to go through with it for the experience of taking it and move forward from there.

In light of that, my life has been as low-key and low-maintenance as possible. I’ve been skipping makeup some days and dressing down more often. I’m fortunate to work in a place with a casual dress code, so I can get in and out of work and straight home to studying without fussing with changing into more comfortable attire.

One of my big go-to’s and most convenience pieces continues to be my slip-on sneakers. I adore the convenience and the sporty look they lend to a casual outfit! Plus, you may be able to find the perfect pair that is both cute AND comfortable. Functionality at its finest! Which is exactly what I need in the final days of preparing for this exam. Needless to say, I was unbelievably excited when InStyle magazine mentioned that the lace-less shoe will be an oncoming Spring trend! As if I needed an excuse to find or buy more shoes. Here is a roundup of some of my favorite slip on shoes:

 

 

 

1. PUMA FENTY by Rihanna in rose gold. These go for about $100 and also come in quite a few other colors at different price points. I particularly enjoy these black ones also! Both are on my wish list! I’m totally in love.

2. ‘Ecentrcq’ Sneaker by Steve Madden. I’m in love with the quilted look to these. Adding texture to any piece on an outfit helps give it dimension and make it look a little more put together. These come at a pretty decent price point of about $60.

3. Okay, these Salvatore Ferragmo Giolly slip-ons may be a bit on the flashy side but I could totally see myself wearing them. Unfortunately my wallet says no: with a price point of $795 these shoes unfortunately will never make their way into my collection. But they’re fun to look at for sure!

4. Michael Kors does it again for me with these super cute embellished Keaton slip-ons. I have a serious thing for gem embellishments, as long as they aren’t overdone. These shoes would go perfectly with my favorite embellished hat from The Limited (see below!).

5. Alright, so far my list has been a bit pricey. Number 5 comes in at a great price point of $19.99 from Target! These Lydia Canvas slip ons have been a go-to for me for years. I have both the taupe and black, and need to seriously consider purchasing newer pairs soon. Mine are finally wearing down after almost non-stop use for four years! Yikes! Totally worth the $20.

6. If you’re looking for the quilted look of the Steve Madden shoes in #1 but hoping for a lower price point, Target delivers again with these super cute quilted-look Reese slip-on sneakers. I love the crisp look of the white on these, but they’re on trend in pretty olive and blush colors as well! Ringing up at only $24.99 a pair, they are a great alternative to pricier styles.

7. These Monnie slip ons from Target (Mossimo) are a newer addition to my closet. I bought them as a convenient shoe for running quick errands while still maintaining a simple sporty look. They definitely do the job, and are a lot more comfortable than I had anticipated! And I get quite a few compliments on them, which is an added bonus. Highly considering purchasing them in black as well.

 

I hope you enjoyed the post! Did I miss any great shoes that you would recommend? If so, leave a comment below!

 

Thanks for stopping by!

 

xo, Karli

My Must Haves for Filofax and Bullet Journaling

My Must Haves for Filofax and Bullet Journaling

Hello Everyone! Today I want to share with you the way I stay organized with my planner! In 2016 I tried the bullet journal system for the first time ever, using the highly recommended Leuchtturm 1917 dot grid notebooks. I absolutely loved it! I wasn’t perfect by any means – there were a lot of days where I wouldn’t plan or write anything (I still do this, I’m so bad). But when I did need that extra reminder, my bullet journal was the perfect place to put it!

My version is modified beyond the true purpose of the bullet journal’s simplicity. While some bujo users stick to the simple method created by Ryder Carroll, many other users (myself included) have added our own twists and artistic flairs. It’s amazing how much creativity can be found inside the pages of someone’s journal! Rather than Ryder’s monthly list method, I would draw out a monthly calendar on a full spread. For my daily spreads I pretty much only used dots and hyphens, forgoing all of the symbols indicated for use by Ryder. I also liked to track expenses every month, as well as monitor my health and fitness goals. Those tracking pages were in list format, so I have not included photos in the blog post. If you are intereted I could always post a few snapshots over on my Instagram!

 

Come 2017, my Leuchtturm 1917 was completely full and it was time to start a new journal! But this year I decided to try implementing the bullet journal system into a Filofax planner! My planner-of-choice was the Filofax Saffiano in the special edition Rose Gold color, A5 size. I’m OBSESSED with rose gold, so I just had to have this color! My second favorite was definitely The Original in Fuschia, but that one runs quite a bit more expensive (although it is currently on sale for $80.50, orig. $115!). If I ever need a second planner I can see myself going back and getting this one as well. The color just really speaks to me.

 

 

My dividers just came in the mail the other day, and I’m so excited to have them! I ordered these from Minted Sugar over on Esty. I purchased both the dividers and a dashboard for the very front with a pocket, perfect for storing receipts for my expense tracking.

For my paper, I had to get creative. I ordered two Rhodia No. 16 Notepads from Goulet Pens (my favorite stationary company! They are so wonderful and helpful). These come perforated so they were perfect for the purpose of tearing from the notepad, hole punching, and inserting into my Filofax!  I put one notepad worth of paper in it, keeping the other as backup and also for playing with my brush lettering.

For the hole punch, I had to order a special one from Amazon. The official Filofax hole punch runs upwards of $60 and had poor ratings, so that was a no go for me. The Amazon Recommended product for the hole punch was the Open Industrial 6 hole punch which I purchased for just $19.75. With Amazon Prime, this showed up on my doorstep within 48 hours! It only punches about 4 pages at a time, but it punches clean and well and is perfect for the price and purpose. It took me just under 5 minutes to punch through a ream of the aforementioned Rhodia paper.

Through bullet journaling I became an avid pen-freak. I LOVE fountain pens (which is why I went all out with the Rhodia paper for my Filofax, I knew it would be perfect for the ink) and have only started my collection. I rely heavily on my turquoise Pilot Metropolitan pen with a fine nib (far left in above photo). This one is perfect for daily writing and is such a great introductory fountain pen. You can’t beat the price or ease of use! I use the Pilot Namiki black ink in this pen.

I use my black Staedtler fineliner pen in 0.3mm every day for drawing up the layouts (far right in above photo). The fineliners are a staple in most bullet journalist collections, but there are many other pens that are similar to choose from (I’ve heard the Stabilo pens are wonderful also!). The only complaints I’ve heard on these is the nib wearing down fast. SInce I write mainly with my fountain pen I can’t attest to the nib longevity on the fineliners, but I do have a backup pack of four black ones on hand just in case! You can find the Staedtler pens at Target if you’re interested in picking up a pack and don’t want to wait for shipping!

 

 

My all-time FAVORITE pen so far has to be my Edison Nouveau Premiere Spring 2016 Edition Water Lily. Whew, that’s a mouthful! Adequately nicknamed the “unicorn barf” pen, it is a beautiful swirl of aqua and a lilac/pink color. I was pleasantly surprised with it as a birthday gift, along with cartridges of both black and aqua Diamine ink cartridges. I currently have a trial size amount of Diamine Hope Pink ink in my pen. I absolutely LOVE this ink and fully intend on buying a full size bottle for use in this pen. I love the way the pink compliments the color on the pen!

I hope soon to add a new pen to my collection. I’ve been eyeballing the Matte Black Pilot Vanishing Point pen with a fine nib for quite some time now, and think it would be a professional, sleek pen to have. I’m nervous about having the clip being where I would write, but I also wonder if it wouldn’t make it easier to grip. I’m hoping they come out with a special edition of this one – Kara over at Boho Berry had a blue/purple gradient on that was limited edition that I love!

 

 

Of course, my collection wouldn’t be complete without some fun washi tape and stickers! I haven’t decorated the pages much in my Filofax, but my Leuchtturm saw washi tape quite often. These two rolls here are the newest from my collection and were purchased during my recent trip to Ohayocon, an anime convention in Ohio that I visited this past weekend. There is an artist whos booth I visited and apparently I had bought variations of her artwork before. This year I discovered it was all her work! I fan-girled a little bit, told her all about the first chrome-detailed piece I’d bought from her and a coffee mug/coaster I bought a year previously as well, all while purchasing two more prints (one with more chrome detailing), the tape, and the stickers! The artist is Cari Corene, and she runs the Etsy shop Story of the Door . For the two foxes in the stickers above she did a collab with Etsy artist Devil’s Bakery. Check them out if you want to see more of these two cute little foxes! They even wrote a children’s book of which the foxes are protagonists, so make sure to check that out if you have a little one at home!

So there you have it! All my necessities for planning in a Filofax. So far I’m really enjoying the migration to the FIlofax system from the Leuchtturm. My biggest peeve with the bound journal was having to constantly re-find spreads if I needed to migrate information. I really like having things grouped together, so being able to move pages around and keep information together and organized really makes me feel better. It’s also nice being able to throw away junk pages or mess-up pages. I hate looking at them. I’m not a perfectionist by any means but it just brings me no joy to flip through my pages and see big x’s and scratched off pages. Although I must say I miss the simplicity of just carrying around a little bound notebook and cracking it open to jot things in.

Do you plan in a bullet journal? What system do you use? Let me know in the comments below, or link me to your blog/instagram if you have photos! I love following other bullet journalists to get inspiration from their pages and soak in the creativity. I am NOT a creative person by any means, I can’t doodle to save my life. So when I see a well planned page with cute doodles and gorgeous handwriting it inspires me to try a little harder in practicing my own handwriting and doodling.

I hope you enjoyed the post! Thank you for stopping by, and I hope you have a wonderful Friday!

 

xo, Karli

 

 

Decluttering with Emily Ley

Decluttering with Emily Ley

A new year brings the itch to start from scratch. Unfortunately, we bury ourselves in so much during the year that starting fresh is pretty darn difficult. Starting from scratch means cleaning, donating, throwing away anything we don’t value. This process is a long and stressful one that I’ve never attempted because I never had much to begin with. Now as I’ve progressed through my career and my young adult life, I’ve accumulated quite the trove of things. The daunting task of going through and really cleaning up is too much. I still have boxes stacked up in an out-of-sight place that contained gifts from Christmas! Going through and figuring out what to keep, what to donate, what to toss…I don’t even like thinking about it!

Earlier this year I started following Emily Ley on Instagram and Twitter. She’s the creator of the Simplified Planner, a planner that I don’t use but the logic behind it really resonates with me. After reading her book Grace Not Perfection, I knew I was a lot like Emily – I wanted my life to be Pinterest perfect and beautiful, but I knew I wasn’t capable of maintaining that level of perfection. And in the attempt to create that “perfect home”, I have accumulated so many decorations. I need to buy more storage bins for the plethora of seasonal decorations I keep bringing home!

I’m like a chicken with its head cut off when it comes to decluttering. I’ll start with one thing, then run off on a tangent and start another little project before actually finishing the first one. Are you guilty of this? I’ll go into the living room to just tidy up and throw away some junk and before I know it I’m trying to organize my bookshelf alphabetically or by color, the garbage bag I was working on filling up laying next to me on the floor unused. It’s the worst, and it takes forever to get things done this way! Luckily for me (and those like me) Emily and her Simplified Planner team are doing a 30 day “Simplicity Challenge” to clean up and organize for the new year. I’m going to try to follow this challenge every day and see how my apartment will feel when it’s done! A clean home is a happy home, and my home is anything but! So hopefully following this challenge will lead me to a happier, more relaxed life at home!

Check out the challenge on The Simplified Planner’s instagram account and let’s clean up for the year together!

 

This post is in no way sponsored by Emily or The Simplified Planner, I just wanted to share because she is one of my favorite entreprenuers and she inspires me to be my better self and get my life together, and also I really feel this challenge will help me and my home!

 

xo, Karli

Welcoming 2017

Welcoming 2017

Welcome to 2017! I’m so excited to see what this year has in store for me. 2016 was a year of crazy highs and devastating lows, and I’m really hoping to see some self redemption in the upcoming months. I have a lot of things I want to work on this year to improve my quality of life, as everyone does. Last year I allowed so much lenience, so much laziness. Not this time! This year is going to be the year I become what I’ve always wanted: the girl who has it all together, but is not perfect. The girl who can make mistakes, but laugh them off instead of cry and lament about them. The girl who finds that happy balance between socializing and lazing around on the couch scrolling through Bloglovin’ for hours and playing The Sims. 2017 will truly be the year of my improved self.

My goal is an all-ecompassing one: to work harder to maintain a healthier lifestyle. This obviously will include a wide range of smaller tasks and goals, including (but not limited to):

  • Being more active!
  • Eating more wholesome, natural foods.
  • Decreasing my waste output – less plastic and single-use items.
  • Working on improving my skincare routine.
  • Reading more books (for this I’m doing the 2017 reading challenge that you can find here on Pinterest)
  • Decluttering: hold on to what’s important and get rid of everything else! I want to be able to enjoy the best parts of my life without being overwhelmed by excess “stuff”.
  • Studying for and taking all four sections of the CPA exam.

It’s difficult, because all of these things are “resolutions” of previous years that I never seem to follow through with. Unfortunately 2016 was the first year that I actually went in the OPPOSITE direction, rather than at least staying the course. But last night when I watched New York City celebrate the turn of the new year, I felt a flicker of hope inside me. Maybe this could be my year. This could be the year that I turn everything around and finally create the life I want to live. I’ve always waited for everything to be done for me, I’ve waited for that perfect moment where everything clicked and I finally got it right. I’ve realized that moment doesn’t exist. It’s do or don’t, and I’m ready to start getting things done.

It’s time for me to stop waiting for the perfect conditions. I need to embrace the sponteniety and imperfection that is Life. I need to see the beauty in unplanned moments (like my cat getting into the middle of a scene for my blog photos) and take advantage of the hidden opportunities in them to create memories. I don’t want to just sit around and wait anymore.

I’m so excited for this year. I have big plans to really make it the best one ever, one day at a time.

What are your goals for the new year? Are you seeking a career change? Is this the year you decide to settle down and start a family? Or is this the time for you to spread your wings, travel and explore the world and your self and see what it is you want out of life? Or maybe this year is just the year you’re going to enjoy with no plan, because plans never work out anyway! And that’s okay too! Make this year the best year for YOU. And tell me all about what your 2017 has in store.

Here’s to a new year, a better life, a better us. Happy New Year, everyone! May it be your best one yet.

xo, Karli

Christmas List

Christmas List

Christmas lists are so much fun! Even if you don’t get anything on them it’s just fun coming up with a wish list of items you’d love to have and haven’t yet bought for yourself! I always keep my favorites together using a Pinterest board. It’s great because it’s so easy to click the photo and follow the link to the appropriate site for purchase! I always ask people I want to buy gifts for if they have Pinterest. It’s a great way to get ideas, even if they don’t have a specifically labeled board. I always try to keep my Christmas List items under a specific price. This makes them more realistic for me (although it would be fun to come up with a luxury list!). Here are just a few items I would love to find under the tree this year:

 

1. Check Woven Square Scarf – Nordstrom – $29.00 on sale for $18.90! Square scarves are my personal favorite when it comes to scarf shapes.

2. I’m in dire need of a standing floor mirror, and really love the sleek minimalist look of the HOVET Mirror from Ikea! – $129.00

3. Who DOESN’T want a cute pair of Nike’s for Christmas? I’m totally in love with the look of the Nike Metcon training shoe, and was overjoyed to find one with a rose cold Nike swoosh! – $130.00 on nike.com

4. Finding classy and simply jewelry at a good price is difficult for me. I really like the simple sleek look of this High-Low Faux Pearl Necklace from The Limited. – $29.95

5. I’m finally at the age where asking for household goods for Christmas actually sounds like a really great idea! And since I have a nice new couch that doesn’t have pillows as a backrest, I’m in the market for some cute matchy throw pillows. Target always has great deals on pillows, and you can find a large range of styles and options online! Pictured here: 2-pack of Room Essentials Suede Pillows in Teal ($15.99, reg. $19.99) and the Cersei Decorative Pillow ($20.99, reg. $29.99).

6&7. I literally live in athletic gear any hour that I’m not at work. Even though I probably own almost 20 pairs of leggings and more tops than I can count, I always find myself wanting more. Recently I discovered this adorable brand called Senita Athletics, a company that makes affordable athletic gear with POCKETS. Even the sports bras have a pocket in the back! An unbelievably nifty idea, which is why I’ve included two items on my wish list: The Fierce Capris with cute mesh cutouts in black ($35) and the Dual 2-in-1 Tank in the Bahamas print ($32).

8. One can never have enough plaid. I love a longer tunic-length shirt over a simple white tee or tank with black moto leggings with zipper detailing and cute black booties! H&M has a lot of cute plaid options, including this Long Shirt that comes in 5 different prints at $24.99!

9. Now that the Apple Watch has been out for a while, it’s unbelievably easy to find customized gear to spruce up your device. One wonderful website to check out for this is casetify.com . They have such a large collection of design options, and the ability to even create your own! Another great place to look and to support small business is Etsy. On Etsy I found this super cute wristband for $32.58!

It’s amazing how quickly individual items add up.

While it’s fun creating a Christmas List and dreaming of the possiblity of owning some of your favorite things, don’t forget to step back and keep in mind what Christmas is really about: enjoying time with family and friends, celebrating life and faith, and being as good of a person as you can possibly be. I know Christmas means something different to everyone, but it has become a very commercialized holiday. Don’t forget to think of others this holiday season, and I really encourage finding some way to help local families in need in your area during the holidays! Toys for Tots donation bins will start popping up everywhere, and donating warm clothes to shelters would be a great way to keep those less fortunate warm in the cooler weather.

Happy Holidays!

xo, Karli