Liebster Award!

Saturday, August 29, 2015


Imagine my surprise/delight when I logged into Blogger to draft some new posts, only to discover that the lovely Shan and the delightful Emily had nominated me to participate in the Liebster Award! 

Now, I'm certain most of you already know what this is, but in case you don't: your fellow bloggers nominate a new blog, with 200 followers or fewer, that shows your appreciation of said blog!

Of course, there are a few other rules with that, too. To quote Shan:

Here are the rules for the nomination process:
1. Once nominated, make a post thanking and linking the lovely person who nominated you.
2. Include the Liebster Award sticker (like the one above) in your post.
3. Nominate ten other new bloggers with less than 200 followers who you think deserve this award.
Let them know they have been nominated by commenting on one of their posts. You can nominate the person who nominated you.
4. Answer the 10 questions asked by the person who nominated you and then make ten questions of your own for your nominees.

While I could spend a decent chunk of eternity talking about myself, that's also kinda pompous, so I'm taking my 5 favorite questions from both lists and giving only 10 answers instead of 20.

 1. If you were only allowed to use one form of social media, which one would you choose?

Twitter! Because I follow so many interesting accounts on there, and am able to stay well-informed about the world.

2. What is your favourite skincare product to recommend to your readers?

Sunscreen, without a doubt. It's the best investment you could ever make for your skin and health.

3. What is your greatest achievement?

Finally reaching a point in my life where I have more good days than bad. :)

4. What is your favourite book to read?

This is one is so hard because there are so many!! But, I think the book that's had the most impact on my life would be Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

5. Top three desert island beauty essentials

  • A hat
  • sunscreen
  • a blanket to protect myself from the sun

6. Cats or dogs?


7. What skill would you most like to improve?

My self-discipline. :(

8. How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Introverted, impulsive, under-caffeinated

9. Pizza or pasta?


10. If you could move anywhere you wanted to in the world, where would it be and why?

Edinburgh, because it's the most amazing city and the climate is perfect.

I know you're supposed to nominate 10 other blogs, but here's the problem: I follow so many awesome people, and because they're all awesome most of them have already been nominated! While I bet you can nominate a person more than once, I don't really want to hassle other people if they've already done it, you know? So instead of 10, I'm picking the following 5:

To the best of my knowledge, none of the above named have been nominated yet. If you have been, then I'm sorry to have bothered you!

NOMINEES! These are your questions:

1. Describe your aesthetic in 3 words
2. Why did you choose the blog design that you did?
3. If you have an Instagram, which of your pictures is your favorite? If you don't have one, which picture that you took is your favorite?
4. How do you spend a rainy day?
5. Which YouTube video is your favorite, and why?
6. Which book have you read in 2015 that really impressed you?
7. Which movie that you saw in 2015 that you loved?
8. What are you looking forward to that's a year from now?
9. What's one thing you've learned about yourself in the past 5 years?
10. What do you love about blogging?

I hope this was entertaining for you guys, and nominees: I can't wait to see your responses! I'm sure they're gonna rock. 

Sunday Night Cinema: It Follows

Sunday, August 16, 2015

You guys.

I saw so many good movies this weekend!

First it started off on Friday with It Follows, which I'll get into more in a moment. Then I watched Oculus on Saturday, and finished up Sunday with Akira, which... wow. I might have to devote other posts to Oculus and Akira, I really liked them both so much. Akira a bit more than Oculus but hey. It's a classic for a reason.

Okay, so. It Follows.

It might be a bit of a surprise, considering the content and aesthetic of this blog, but I actually have a pretty strong Goth side to me. I was always too much of a pansy in high school to watch straight up horror movies, but I did read darker fantasy and speculative fiction, which of course paved the way for my eventual slide into horror. Lately I've really been feeling this genre and I feel like I can't get enough of it, for some reason?

Anyway, I saw It Follows on Friday night and I loved it. It's not necessarily the kind of movie that induces jump scares or screaming, but it's fairly tense and is the kind of movie that stays with you. The next day, I could not stop thinking about it. 

If you aren't familiar with the movie, then behold! A trailer! I picked the one I liked best.

Please note that the following is full of SPOILERS. So read at your own risk.

  • I really liked the opening scene; I felt that was an effective way to set the tone of the movie.
  • The shot of the car where it all goes down was stunning. 
  • Actually most of this movie was stunningly shot. I really liked the aesthetic choices they made.
  • I loved the scenes of driving whenever they're in a car
  • The part with the wheelchair was well executed. 
  • My favorite poem ever is in this!!!!!!! 
  • What is Yara's compact thing supposed to be? A smart flip phone?
  • Speaking of Yara, while the actress did a good job, I was wondering why she and Paul couldn't be PoC? The whole movie was very white and it takes place in Detroit.
  • I liked how none of the characters shamed Jay for having sex.
  • I'm still undecided on whether this is an allegory for STIs, or fear of intimacy, or...?
  • I also liked how very little time was spent on the whole "You're making this up, Spooky Mulder!" Everyone accepts this is real and tries to formulate a plan to fight it.
  • Speaking of plans, what the heck was with that plan with the pool? I feel like that could have been executed better?
  • Greg's scene was so sad. 
  • there are so many shots that just stick with you. The hand and the flowers, the wheelchair, the car, the opening beach scene, the park... I could go on, but you get the idea
  • This movie is one of the few pieces of media that has rape in it where including that didn't ruin it for me. I'm still not sure why. I'll have to think about this more. 
  • I liked the ambiguity of the ending. Did she give it to Paul? Or those men? I like to believe it's the men.
Overall, I really liked this movie and I can't wait to watch it again. This movie is not without its triggering bits, however. Trigger warning for: rape, STI, sexual violence. 

Skincare Saturday: Sephora Sun Safety Kit 2015, Part 2

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Continuing my review of the Sephora Sun Safety Kit 2015, today we're gonna go over the mineral sunscreens. 

I liked the Dr. Dennis Gross one okay. It has a bit of a white cast at first, which goes away, and then some shine after, but nothing too terrible. But on the whole it was pretty unremarkable? I think I'll use this up but I can't see myself dropping $42.00 for a pretty unremarkable sunscreen.

AmorePacific performed just like the Dennis Gross, except with fragrance. While it smelled really nice, I'm against fragrance in skincare as a general rule, so that knocked it down a few points. This one is $65.00, a price so absurd that I could never see myself buying a full-sized version of it. I do like that the packaging of the full-sized one touts a PA rating! We need more UVA ratings of sunscreens in the US.

The Clarins Ecran Multi-Protection is a part physical, part chemical sunscreen. The physical part is titanium dioxide, which, while a good sunblock, isn't as effective at UVA protection as zinc oxide. Regardless, I really did like this one! It had a slight white cast but also dried down fairly matte, so it wasn't too shiny. There's slight fragrance, but it's not as bad as the AmorePacific. The only thing I didn't like about it was that when I tried to wear it under my Hourglass primer, it left weird white streaks on my face. I liked the way the sample performed, but not justify-spending-$42.00-liked. 

Oh. My glob.

You guys.

This sunscreen.

I totally get why it's a cult favorite now. Out of all the sunscreens I tried, the Shiseido was the one that impressed me the most. When I first tried it, it left a very noticeable white cast on my face, but that eventually faded away and instead of making my face look too shiny, I looked nice and matte. It contains both titanium dioxide and zinc oxide as well as other chemical sunscreens, making this a very good choice. Out of all the sunscreens in this list, at $20.00 it's also the most affordable. I think this would be a great heavy-duty sunscreen if you are outside a lot or live in a very sunny area. I try to stay out of the sun as much as I can, but if I were to ever start running outdoors, I would definitely purchase and use this daily. By far my favorite out of the sunscreens I tried!

NOT PICTURED: the Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer. This is because the bottle fell out of my purse and broke the very first day I tried using it, so I'm afraid I didn't get to use it for more than a few hours. But oh, those few hours! I really liked what I got to try. Next time I place an online Sephora order, I'll probably pick up the $14.00 half-ounce that they carry.  

Overall, I quite liked the mineral sunscreens! 3 out of 5 isn't bad, and a couple of them were good enough for me to want to pay for a full-sized one! 

Miscellanea 3

Saturday, August 1, 2015

This week's post is gonna be a lazy-ass Insta round up post because this week, you guys. It was crazy-making!

Work was hellacious. I'm talking like "Please God let me find a Xanax someone has dropped because I can't take this stress anymore". Yeah, I was at the point where eating prescription pills off the floor seemed like a solid life choice. (I didn't, for the record. Find a Xanax that is.)

Then my car died after work and I spent 4 hours in the office parking lot and if I never see that damn place again I will be seriously so happy.

To top it off my body was all "Let's get in on this crapfest!" and so I haven't been feeling too great either.

On the bright side, at least I'm not having the week that Meek Mill is having? So life could be worse, I guess!

One of my ideas for a post is to do a write-up on my writing setup. This is what I've got going on for right now in terms of a standing desk. Side note: Standing desks are really good for you! I want a treadmill desk in the future but right now I'm using this for as long as my back can stand it. I've changed my laptop wallpaper since this picture but you can find it here.

I remain convinced that Virginia is one of the most beautiful places ever.

This was a wonderfully relaxing moment... I was reading the incomparable All Our Pretty Songs by Sarah McCarry. One of my favorite books of all time, and every time I read it I end up dropping everything I'm doing to absorb it. I find new things to love or appreciate about it every time I reread. 

Lately I've been finding myself getting more into stationary. It makes sense when you think about it- I'm the kind of writer who needs to actually use pen and paper to draft, or else it won't stick right in my brain. If I'm spending a significant portion of my time doing something so tactile then to me it's worth it to spend money on beautiful things to use. I've been thinking about doing a monthly "Plan With Me" vlog series, but then I realized that I just don't have enough going on with my life to really do a lot of planning- unless you consider planning time for "MAJOR PANIC STRESS-OUT" in which case I could def fill up my planner with that. 


On the downhill slide now with the draft- I'll send it off to my first readers, but once this is done it's back into the querying trenches. I'm excited, and apprehensive...