2013: a summary

Dec 30, 2013

The end of the year is near (thank you, Captain obvious) and I think it's safe to say that I'm SO ready for a fresh new start. Today (er, yesterday, since it's now after midnight) I most definitely drowned in my own tears because life is just too much to handle at this point. I'm so unhappy with where I currently am at this stage of my life and I'm not afraid to admit it, really. This doesn't mean I am dwelling on my unhappiness-it's quite the contrary, actually. I am always, always trying to find the good in things, but there comes a point where you just can't lie to yourself anymore. You must admit your true feelings and accept it in order to make the necessary changes. It might take some time, but trying for change is the best anyone can do. I feel like every blogger's "Review of 2013" posts have been so happy and upbeat and here I am burdening you with this. I apologize, although I felt the need to say my truth regardless just in case anyone reading this is going through unhappy times- you are not alone and you will get through anything that is currently bringing you down. Keep on keeping on and let's make 2014 a wonderful year.

Aside from that little tidbit, according to my blog, this year, I...wrote a review on the iPhone App called "The Eatery", turned a year older, got featured on the lovely Natasha's blog , shared some of the books that I was and still am reading, wrote about some clothes I used to own, discussed my fear of getting a new dentist, tried the much raved about Wake me Up foundation by Rimmel, shared 15 random fact on me, myself, and I, had an Easter weekend getaway, tried the EOS lip balms for the first time, had an emergency scare with Djinn Djinn, my doggie, made my first Zara purchase, said goodbye to my childhood home, attended my first kite festival, changed my blog's name, took lots of nature walks, shared my summer to-do list, attended a new university, made a couple of visits to California's Hearst Castle, spoke about my personal style icons, visited the annual scarecrow festival, shared about the time there was a bear sighting on campus, went to several library book sales, saw Sarah Brightman in concert for the 2nd time, had a weird skin irritation on my chin, and of course, celebrated Christmas.

If I had to summarize my year according to instagram, I'd say I ate way too much pizza, acted as paparazzi with my dog too many times (I'm surprised he hasn't got a restraining order against me), made friends with real life Bambis (okay, so I just waved to them all the time, but that makes us friends, okay?!), aspired to be the next Van Gogh, took way more shoe selfies than actual face selfies, baked more homemade goodies than the average grandmother, and captured more sunsets than the entire instagram population. And oh, hey! While we're on the subject of instagram, did I ever tell you that recently I had a little "proud" moment when Bucco shoes featured me on their instagram page? Things like that are always fun. :)

Overall, I feel like I had a somewhat productive year. I know, I didn't discover a cure for insomnia or anything, but as I must keep reminding myself (because I tend to forget this easily), I am exactly where I'm supposed to be (we all are). As far as this blog is concerned, I'm happy- it's probably the happiest and safest thing in my life right now and I couldn't be more thankful to those of you who read it and especially those of you who offer kind and insightful words post after post.

Probably the main "improvement" I definitely want to make for the upcoming year regarding this blog is to take more outfit photos. I've compiled the ones from 2013 and I have to say, it's a disappointingly small group of photos. Out of 365 days, these are the only outfits I could come up with?! Seriously!? How is it possible for some people to take outfit photos nearly everyday? Those are the kinds of people who wake up looking like they're ready to walk the red carpet. In my opinion, many of these outfits were a bit plain other than colorful. I need to stop wearing my hair up so much (I blame my inability to find a good hair stylist) and if it ever stops being sunny (not that I want it to stop being sunny, but you know..), I might consider actually showing my eyes in photographs instead of only wearing sunglasses ('cause, yes, I do have eyes- they're brown- speaking of, has anyone ever seen Karl Lagerfeld without his sunglasses? Yep, me neither).

Yep, 2013 was a long, somewhat productive, and interesting year. Definitely not my best, definitely not the worst. Most of all, as with every year that goes by, I'm always thankful. Thankful...for everything.

This was probably my longest post of the year but I felt it was necessary, so I thank you for reading. FYI, 2014 is kind of an awkward number to say out loud (it doesn't roll off the tongue the way 2005 did). Just thought I'd point that out because you know, I'm sure you all cared to hear my opinion on large numbers. ;)

And now I bid you farewell

...until 2014.

Gift Guide: Cold Nose, Warm Heart

Dec 2, 2013
If you are a pet owner, you know that they are part of your family no matter what anyone else might think. They love you and annoy you all at the same time. There's nothing like being a pet owner (or, in their eyes, a human owner). Whatever your choice of pet, they are all special and deserve nothing but love. As some of you might know, I am best friends with an overgrown chihuahua terrier whom I've loved for 4 years now. Naturally, he is one of the lucky ones I'll be shopping for this season. In fact, I've already bought most of his stuff. He has his own stocking and everything. Am I crazy? Yeah, well, so is half of the world ;) 

Bake-A-Bone The Original Dog Treat Maker:  What dog doesn't love special treats? I love to spoil my dog (obviously- the little guy owns more sweaters than I do) but every so often I prefer making my own treats for him because I think the ingredients are healthier than store bought ones. This treat maker would be perfect because somehow I get the feeling dogs enjoy treats more when they're shaped like bones (or am I just imagining that?)

Smarter Toys IQ Treat Ball Dog Toy: This treat ball is my dog's absolute favorite toy out of all the toys he's ever owned. It keeps him entertained for long periods of time and he plays with it throughout the day, everyday. He even jumps on my face to let me know when it's empty. If your dog doesn't own this, he needs to. You can thank me later.

Chilly Dog Mallard Dog Sweater: I know some people don't like when dogs wear clothes but I think especially if they're smaller  dogs, they can get pretty cold so it's only fair that we provide them with a few sweaters or coats- bonus points if they're stylish.

Complete Natural Nutrition Buddy's Kitchen Off-Leash Treat:  These are probably my dog's favorite treats and I don't mind giving them to him because they're super tiny (about the size of a puppy kibble) and only have 4 calories each. And here's a little secret: you can usually find them at TJ Maxx for only $2.99

Frame Ornament: I can't believe I've had my dog for this long and I have yet to add him to our family Christmas tree. I definitely want to hang his picture as an ornament and I want to get his paw print molded into an ornament as well. These are things I will surely treasure forever.

ZippyPaws Burrow Squeaky Hide and Seek Plush Dog Toy:  Last, but not least, this little toy is one that my dog turns psycho over. He's had the squirrel and bird versions before and loved pulling them out of their houses and chewing on them. In fact, he chewed them so much, he kinda killed them so he's in need of a new set. I'm thinking monkeys will be my next choice since he tends to go crazy weird and hyper whenever I say the word "monkey" in a high pitched voice. Are all little dogs insane?

Look out for a dog shopping haul soon (because, like I said, I'm crazy) ...