Wednesday, July 27, 2016

What's on my College Fashion Wishlist

I'm headed off to college in a few weeks(crazy right) and I thought it would be fun to share a few of the things I'm hoping to buy before I leave. I'm basically using heading off to college as an excuse to buy a bunch of essential things I have been needing, but haven't bought! I'm headed into my freshman year, so I'm definitely not an expert at what to bring, but from reading a thousand blog articles(thanks Pinterest) I've been able to get an idea of what I may need.
Raincoat // Tee // Leggings //
  Skirt // Flats // Sneakers
Raincoat: This is probably the most important thing on this list. I do not have my own raincoat, so I definitely think I need to get one before I head off to college. Especially for those rainy walks to class!
Tee: I don't have a lot of plain t-shirts, and I think they would be good essentials for casual days on campus. You can pair them with jeans and flats and you're out the door. The ones from J.Crew look so soft and are affordable. 
Leggings: I've never been a legging person, but I heard they are the most popular thing to wear in college so I thought I would get a fun pair. This stripe pattern is perfect, and just my style which  would make wearing leggings just that much better. I also want to get a new pair of classic black ones. 
Skirt: This definitely is not a necessity, but I think this skirt is just too cute! I could totally see myself sporting it as I walk around campus. It is casual but super fun and girly. Plus, I've been needing some new skirts, so I guess I can justify it. 
Flats: Everyone that knows me that flats are my favorite shoes. They make up a good portion of all my shoes because they work so well for every season. I usually buy affordable ones from Target, but I'd love to invest in some Lucky Brand ones. My mom has them and they are sooo much comfortable which is perfect for walking around campus!
Sneakers: I haven't got a new pair of sneakers in like 2 years, so I figured now would be a good time to get a pair. I love the simple classic black ones, as they seem like they would go with everything and be fun to style!

Besides these things, I am also looking to get a new crossbody and wristlet. So if you have any recommendations for either of those, let me know! I'm willing to spend a little bit more, but I want them both to be something I really love. What's on your wishlist this month?

Monday, July 25, 2016

5 Tips for Having a Great School Year

1. Get to Know Your Teachers: This is the thing that has helped me so much in high school and even middle school. If you get to know your teachers when you have a problem or need help it will be so much easier to get it. You see them every day, so you might as well get close with them. They are invaluable for college recommendations and scholarship applications, the better you know them the better they will be able to write about you. And if you end up needing a point boost at the end of the year, a teacher that saw you made an effort will be more likely to help you get that A! 
2. Find a Good Backpack: If you buy a good quality neutral backpack it will last you all the way through high school and even into college! My favorite is the North Face backpack. I promise a good backpack will save your back when you have to carry around heavy textbooks. Just say no to the tote bags, no matter how cute they are; they aren't practical! 
3. Get Organized: Spend a little extra time in the beginning of the school year creating an organization system. Having an effective system will help you to have a productive year. I love using dividers in binders, and if you don't have a 3 hole punch buy one now(my school supply picks here!) I also recommend getting a planner, check out this post for my picks. 
4. Buy Some New Clothes: I'm not saying to go crazy and buy a ton of stuff, but a buy a couple new pieces. It will help you feel fresh and excited for the new year. I always like to get a new pair of jeans and a couple of tops! Check out my back to school clothing guide here!
5. Meet New People: No matter if they are people you've been in school with for years and never spoken to or a completely new student, meet and get to know people. You never know who will become one of your friends. I like to start every year with an open heart, embrace change. 

I hope these tips will help you to have a great school year! Spend some time in the beginning of the school year building relationships and getting organized because it will lay a groundwork for the rest of the year! I have lots more back to school posts coming. Let me know if there is one you would like to see in the comments below!

If you're an incoming high school freshman check out these tips

Friday, July 22, 2016

My Favorite School Supplies

When I was a freshman in high school I was so confused as to what school supplies were best and would work well to help me be successful. A lot of things I discovered right away, but some things took me up to senior year to figure out! As a result, I thought I would share my favorites to hopefully make your walk down the school supplies aisle a little bit easier this year. All of these items are tried and true things that I have used and loved and would recommend without a doubt.

Day Designer: Best planner I have ever used! See my full post on it here
Pencil bag: I know a pencil bag is not always an esssential for everyone, but I couldn't live without mine. It helps to keep your pencils, pens, etc. organized, and you don't have to worrry about marks getting on your bag. A good quality bag will hold up for several years and will be a life savor for the insode of your backpack and bags!
Notebook: The Five Star College Ruled notebooks are my absolute favorites. The hard plastic covers help them to hold up all throughout the year. Plus they come in so many fun colors! I recommend using notebooks for classes where the majority of the class will be taking notes, for example history classes or classes like psychology or biology.
Calculator: Buy a graphing calculator now! I didn't do this and it is one of the greatest regrets I have. I didn't buy one until my junior year and then had to play catch up to learn how to use it. They are expensive, but I promise it will be your life savor in math class, especially calculus as well as the SAT!
Binder: The Avery Durable binders are by far the best. They hold up throughout the entire year without fail. I recommend using binders for classes where you get lots of handouts, for example math or english. This way you can hole punch them and organize them.
Pencils: There are so many cute pencils on the market, but the best quality pencils are the Ticonderoga brand. They sharpen the best and their erasers actually erase. If you like wooden pencils than these are definitely your best bet. 
Pens: My senior year I fell in love with the Pilot G2 pens. They write so smoothly and beautifully but are also affordable. They are perfect for taking notes and writing essays. 

When do you go back to school? Let me know in the comments below!
Previous Back to School Posts: Clothing Essentials

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Back to School Clothing Essentials: How to Look Great this Fall

It's my favorite time of year!! I absolutely love back to school time. And I'm even more excited because I'm kicking off my back to school series today! Over the next few weeks, I'll be sharing back to school outfits, tips, and essentials.  I think this time of year is perfect to stock up on a few fun clothing pieces. Since I'm sure those of you starting school in a few weeks are heading to the stores, I thought it would be fun to share what I think are the perfect back to school fashion essentials. 
Fall weather can be a bit unpredictable and different depending on where you are. That is why I decided to include tops of all different sleeve lengths. I think a button up paired with some shorts is super cute for a transition outfit. I also love a tank paired with some jeans. And you can't go wrong with a stripe shirt, and I feel like this blue colored one is perfect for summe or fall. A crisp white tee can go with so many things, it's an essential you definitely can not skip out on!

If I had to recommend one pair of pants to you all it would be the J.Crew Factory Gigi Pants. They are so comfortable, but so cute. I love pairing them with a button up or a flowy tank for an easy, but put together look. I always think it is a good idea to get a new pair of jeans before school starts, I absolutely love the Levi jeans. They are affordable and they hold up so well. I love to have a little bit of fun with my bottoms too. I think the striped skirt is a perfect transition piece from summer to fall. It'd be super easy to throw on with a white tee in the morning before school. I also love these navy shorts. If your school allows you to wear shorts do it, a fun printed pair makes for a simple but adorable outfit. 

I'm all for wearing dresses to school. I think they make you not only look put together, but they help you show respect for your teachers. Plus it is only one piece to throw on in the morning and you are out the door. The white and blue dress is perfect for the transition months: August and September. And the other two are perfect for the rest of fall and even into early winter. If you don't care for dresses, I think a super cute romper is a good way to get a similar look. I love this romper, the color and style are perfect for transitioning into fall. 

Accessories can make or break an outfit, so it is great to have a few new ones to style for back to school. I still love statement necklaces and I think this one paired with a striped tee or dress would make a perfect back to school outfit. The colors work for summer and for fall! A nice tote is great for school, I don't recommend using it for your books but it's perfect for everything you need for extracurriculars or going over to a friend's house after school. I also have been loving hair clips. They look so cute, but they also help to hold your hair back. Perfect for test days so your hair won't fall in your face. As for shoes, I think you should get a new pair of sandals as well as flats! Flats transition perfectly into fall and sandals are great for the summer months. 

I hope this gave you some inspiration for back to school clothing! Let me know what some of your back to school essentials are in the comments bellow!


Monday, July 18, 2016

What's in my Summer Purse

During the summer I love to act on a whim. So I am often heading out with little warning, either running to a friends house, out to the store or a babysitting job(though for my week day babysitting job I usually use a larger tote). As a serious planner this can sometimes be difficult for me, so I find the easiest way to keep myself sane while running from place to place is to have a super well packed bag. This way I can grab it as I run out and be prepared for wherever I may be going. So I thought it would be fun to share the essentials that I keep in my bag. 

I got this super affordable but adorable crossbody from Old Navy. I love it, because it has two zippered pockets as well as an open pocket in the middle. I keep my wallet in one of the zippered pockets and everything else in the other zippered pocket. I love having the open pocket in the middle to stick my phone in, so I can have easy access while I am out and about. 

 I try to keep it simple in my purse, not to overload it with to much stuff. There is nothing worse then lugging around a heavy purse all day long. I keep only the essentials for a mid day refresh or afternoon recharge. 

 Wallet: Fossil // Key Fob: Smathers & Branson // Lip Balm: Fresh 
One of the biggest things I keep in my purse is my wallet. I absolutely love the color and style of this Fossil wallet.  It has room for everything I could possibly need and it is all easy and accessible. I also keep my keys in my purse, obviously when I'm out I stick them in there but when I'm home too that way I always know where they are. Plus how cute is the key fob, I absolutely love the Smathers & Branson key fobs! I always keep a pen because you never know when you are going to need to write something down or when you'll have a spark of inspiration. I also have been keeping my phone charger, because my phone is old(I desperately need a new one) and the battery only lasts a couple of hours if I'm lucky. Hand sanitizer is an essential, especially as I've been babysitting because anywhere kids are is an instant breeding ground for germs. And it is no fun to be sick during the summer. Gum is another essential to help keep your breath fresh. And I always try to keep a few lip products, chapstick is essential in the summer time, but a good lip gloss can be the perfect pick me up when your makeup and energy has started to fade.

I hope you enjoyed this look in to my purse! I also have babysitting and pool bags, so let me know down below if you would like to see what is in those. Also, tell me what your one purse essential is!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Following Your Passions + My Big Announcement

One of the most important things that I learned in high school was to follow your passions. High school is a lot of the same, almost everyone is in the same classes and does the same things on the weekends. That's the thing about high school, you can find what you like  because you take so many different classes but unless you put in the effort it is difficult to do anything with that passion. That is why I am so thankful I was able to discover my own ways to work on and share my passions when in high school. And that is what I am going to be sharing with all of you today. Five ways, outside of school, that you can follow your passions, whether you love singing, art, or video games.

1. Find a summer program: This is a great way to spend a lot of time doing what you love, and they are available in almost every subject area. I suggest checking out Summer Discovery or looking for a program at a local college. 
2. Start a blog: I didn't have any idea how to pursue my interest in fashion until I found the blogging world. I love having a place to share my outfits and shopping addiction. Plus it is a free way to share any topic you love as well as connect with others who love it!
3. Read books: This speaks for itself. Raid the library and find books that inspire you. It's a simple and ease way to learn more about a topic that you love. 
4. Join a club or community: Find people like you to talk to and learn from. It can be an online community or a local club or group. Just do a quick google search and I'm sure you'll be available to find a group of people with common interests to you!
5. Share it with others: Offer to teach your friend about the subject or discuss it at dinner with your family. If you love it, the people you care about will love hearing you talk about it. 

I hope this helps you to find a way to follow your passion this upcoming school year or right now! Now I want to just share one of my passions with all of you. I love politics like really love it, and I really wanted to find a way to share my love and knowledge of it. As a result, I decided to take my own advice and to start a blog. I didn't want to bring politics into this blog as it doesn't really fit, so I decided to start a completely separate blog. It is called The Politics Girl and I would love if you would check it out! It is not perfect yet, but I just could not wait to share it and start posting on it. You can read more about my mission for the website in my first post, but the goal is to give you the bare bone facts that will allow you to form your own beliefs and inspire you to cast a vote that matters to you. I have a new post up today all about National Conventions. With the Republican National Convention coming up on Monday it is a great read to get you informed about the upcoming political events and what will result from the conventions!

I hope you all have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

How to Conquer Summer Boredom

It is that point in the summer where you begin to run out of things to do. You're tired of going to the pool and dinner with your friends. Your Pinterest and Netflix have been overused. It's time for something new. I thought I would give you all a few ideas that can help turn an average summer day into a fun and exciting adventure. 

1. Read a Book: Head to your local library or Barnes and Noble and browse the shelves until you find something you want to read. Then head home or to the park and get lost in your book.
2. Craft: Consult that DIY board on Pinterest and pick something to make! It can be something useful or something totally random, just get your creative juices flowing. 
3. Get Some Fresh Air: Head to the local park, run around on the playground or go for a hike. And hey maybe you'll get some exercise too!
4. See a Movie: Go see that new movie, and don't forget to buy a popcorn and candy to go along with it. Treat yourself every once in a while.
5. Breakfast with Friends: My friends and I always go out for dinner or lunch, but switch it up and head out to breakfast! Wake up early and start the morning with lots of laughs and fun.
6. Bake a Cake: Sometimes you just got to test your baking skills and make a super fun sweet treat. Just try not to eat it all in one day. 
7. Go on a Day Trip: Is there a nearby city that you have been dying to visit? Research the best spots and head there for the day. Maybe it is a visit to the zoo or a super yummy ice cream shop, embrace the areas nearby.
8. Babysit: Need to make a little extra money? Offer to babysit for some of the families in your neighborhood. It helps keep you active and you'll make some good money you can use for other adventures. 
9. Scrapbook/ Photo Albums: After a trip, consider making a scrapbook or photo album as a way to remember the vacation. It's a fun way to get creative, but to also preserve memories. 
10. Offer to do Chores or Errands for Mom: Spend a day pretending to play mom! Wash everyone's sheets, head to the grocery store, and pick up your younger sister from her friends; I promise your mom will appreciate it!
11. Visit that Local Spot You've Been Meaning to Go: We all have that one spot in our town that we have been meaning to go, but have just not made it to yet. Now is the perfect time to finally get there. 
12. Visit Family: I used to do this every summer, but since starting to work I have not been able to. Go and stay with your grandparents for a few days or go see your cousins. It's so fun to spend time with family, and it means so much to them. 

Most importantly realize that you don't need to leave your community to have a great summer. There are tons of fun things to do around you no matter where you live; you just need to search and find them. Also, remember that everything is more fun with a friend, so grab your best friend pick one of these activities and just go do it!

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Preppy Techie

I recently went to Target and found an adorable laptop case from the Dabney Lee line! The line has the cutest preppy prints in laptop, iPad, and iPhone cases and I just knew I needed to share. Pink, green, and navy: how in the world can you go wrong! The majority of the line is only sold in stores so run to your nearest store and check it out. The adorable prints of the Target collection inspired me to search out some more to share with you all. I went to my go-to shop, Nordstrom, and found the cutest Kate Spade cases. I am loving the cornflower blue color, melon, and gold colors!

Also while browsing Target, I couldn't help but notice the back to school section. With the growth of technology, it is becoming much more prevalent in the classroom. iPads and laptops are becoming pivotal in the learning process. So many of you may be looking to add a little flair to your technology before heading back to school this fall! A cute case will help set your technology apart from the dozens of similar pieces of technology. And for all you rising seniors, buy an extra phone charger to keep in your backpack; you'll thank me later. I'm so excited for back to school time! I have lots of fun posts planned that I can not wait to share.

I hope this post inspired you in outfitting your iPhone, iPad, and laptop! Let me know which piece is your favorite.


Friday, July 8, 2016

Friday Favorites

I just got back from the lake and I had a few favorites to post, so I just thought I would share a quick Friday favorites post to share some of the things I have been loving this week. This is my first ever one of these posts so let me know if you like it!

1. I have been loving my Aerie bathing suits! Not only are they super cute and comfortable, but I get a ton of compliments every time I wear them. If you are in the market for a new swimsuit definitely check out Aerie

2. I absolutely loved this post by Caitlin of Southern Curls & Pearls on how to be a morning person! While I normally wake up early, if I am not working or doing something I need tips on how to be productive instead of just lounging around in bed. Her post gave some great tips!

3. I have been loving Studyign's videos on Youtube! She posts a lot of great videos about studying tips, journaling, and just organizing your life. After watching her videos I am tempted to go buy out the stationary aisle at Target!

4. While at the lake we made homemade ice cream almost every night, and it has easily become one of my favorite summer things. It is so fun coming up with new flavors to make and it tastes so much better than store bought! 

5. Dorm shopping has been so much fun, whether it is simple browsing online or actually heading to the store. I have 2 different posts(#1 and #2) showing some of the things I have bought for my dorm feel free to check them out! 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Do something fun and relax a little bit. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Dorm Room Haul-Part 2

A couple months ago I shared some things that I had bought for my dorm room. Since then I have bought a few more things, so I decided it was time for a second dorm room haul. If you haven't seen the first one you can check it out here, it features my bedding, some desk accessories, and a few other decorations. This time, the post is more about essentials, but there are a few decorations also included! I definitely still have more to buy so there will be at least one more of these posts.

 Brita Slim Pitcher and Brita Filters
I wanted to be able to have filtered water in my dorm room, so I picked up this Brita Slim Pitcher. I think it is perfect for the dorm room because it is fairly small, so it won't take up a lot of space. The pitcher was pretty affordable, it only cost around $10. The filters are the more expensive part, they cost $25, but you can get a $5 rebate from Bed Bath and Beyond right now!

 J.C. Penny Flannel Sheets
I wanted to get flannel sheets for the winter because I have loved them the past few years I've had them on my bed at home. These ones are super soft and will hopefully help to keep me a little bit warmer in those cold weather months. Plus, they were on sale because it is summer!

I, unfortunately, couldn't find this online to link it, she did tell me it was from Kirkland's, so if you check out your local store you may be able to find it! My friend got it for me for my birthday knowing that my dorm colors were green, navy, and gold and I absolutely love it. It is made to hang on the wall and I can't wait to find the perfect place for it. 

 Hobby Lobby File Folders and Acrylic Tape Dispenser
I got a few more desk accessories this time around. I found these adorable file folders from Hobby Lobby and with the 40% off coupon they were a super good deal. I love using file folders to organize papers and these were just too cute to pass up. I also got an acrylic tape dispenser. I use tape all the time for the most random things so I figured I needed a tape dispenser. This one is super chic looking since it is acrylic!

 Mirror from Amazon
I got this mirror to use to do my makeup. It isn't fancy, but it has a large mirror perfect for being able to see your whole face. I love it and know I will get lots of use out of it! I know it is made for self-portraits, but it is a good alternative to those expensive mirrors you see at Bed Bath and Beyond. 

My friend also got me this super cute basket for my birthday. I think it will be perfect for organizing and storing things, plus it matches my color scheme perfectly. It is pretty big so it will hold a lot of stuff, and will be good for bringing all my stuff to college as I can fill it up with towels, sheets, etc.

Wall charger from Amazon
My mom found this and I think it is a great idea. Basically, it just lets you have four USB outlets in one regular outlet! I think it will be perfect for college when you are going to have limited charging space, but really it is perfect for anywhere. It would be great for travel!

 First Aid Kit from Target
I got this first aid kit just because I thought it would be nice to store all my medicine and bandaids in, so that while I'm sick I don't have to be searching all over for what I need. The case was actually free from Target when you buy three things that would go in it(band-aids, Neosporin, Benadryl, etc). It's super cute and has lots of pockets inside. I haven't finished getting everything for it, but once I do I may do a whole post dedicated to it. 

Towels from J.C. Penny
I think one of my cousins suggested to not get white towels because they will get really dirty. As a result, I found these Navy ones. I think they are perfect because they won't show dirt, but they also match my dorm colors! The towels from J.C. Penny are super nice and affordable(buy one get one for a penny)! I'm going to be getting them monogrammed as well for a little added cuteness. 

I ended up getting a duvet for my bedding. I bought the duvet cover from P.B. Teen(see my duvet cover here), but I needed the insert. I found this one from Target and it was a good deal for the size I needed and the weight I wanted. I've never had a duvet before and am interested to see how it works out in my dorm!

I hope you all enjoyed this post! I love sharing what I have been buying. If you are already in college or are off to college next year please let me know what some essentials I need to get are. Also, don't forget to check out the first part if you haven't already!


Monday, July 4, 2016

Stars, Stripes, and Sparklers

Happy Fourth of July!! This is one of my favorite holidays of the year, and as a result, there is always a lot of pressure to have the perfect outfit. Every year I go up to my grandparent's lake house, so my outfits are always very casual. Usually, I'm wearing a tee or tank with some chino shorts(check out what I wore last year here). Though how fun would that blue dress be if you are going to something a little bit nicer. I thought I would write this post to give you all some inspiration for what to wear today. But even if you already have a Fourth of July outfit picked out or you find this post later on; remember that red, white, and blue is a classic all summer long! 

J.Crew Factory was my go-to place to find Fourth of July inspiration. They had red, white, and blue in abundance on their site! I love the red top paired with white shorts and classic sandals. If you want to add even more American spirit you can sport the super fun Vineyard Vines baseball cap. If you want to keep it a little bit more simple, I love the navy blue polka dot shorts with just a crisp white top. It is classic, but still shows some Fourth of July spirit. If you are playing it more casual like me I absolutely love this tee I found on Etsy and you can't go wrong with some converse, how cute are these red ones! And if you want to dress up a little bit more the red t-shirt dress or blue cotton dress are obviously perfect choices paired perfectly with some simple sandals. So many cute things, I want to buy them all!

To see what I am wearing check out my Instagram @welldressedash (the title is a little hint)! I hope you all have a great day and enjoy spending time with your friends and family celebrating the wonderful country we live in. Light a sparkler, eat a popsicle, and watch some fireworks!

Friday, July 1, 2016

My Summer Schedule

Happy July! I have been wanting to do one of these posts since the beginning of the summer, and when Sydney from Chic in Carolina posted hers I knew I needed to share mine! Keep in mind while this is a pretty good look at my daily life; it is always changing based on different activities and plans I make, and that is why I absolutely love my Day Designer planner. The one thing that I am always sure to do is to wake up by 8. Even though I do not have to be at my babysitting job until 11, I love having those few hours in the morning to work on my blog, as I find I am most productive in the morning. Then as you can see the majority of my day is spent babysitting, which I love(post about that here). The girls I babysit for love to go to the pool and play outside, so I usually end up showering when I get home before moving on to whatever I am going to do for the rest of the night! Another thing I always try to do is go to bed by 11, but that shifts around depending on what I am doing that night. I want to have time to get on Pinterest or Tumblr before bed and make sure my blog post is ready for the next day. I'm a super routine oriented person, so I love being able to have a schedule to stick to almost every day!

This was a little bit of a different post, but I really hope you enjoyed it! I'd love to hear about your daily routine, when do you find you are most productive, morning or afternoon? Let me know in the comments below.