Pictures and Political Cartoons Worth a Laugh

 

First, it was the 2016 Presidential Election, then the Inauguration, then the Women’s March, and everything that’s happened since. If you’re like me, every day, when it comes to politics, seems like a tough pill to swallow, and it looks like that’s how it’s going to be for the next four years. But just as many people say, “control what you can control,” for me I chose to control how a react to what’s going on in our country.

While we might be in turmoil, don’t let that steal your joy. For me, I have turned to hilarious political cartoons and genuinely funny political pictures to lighten my mood. While this pictures and cartoons won’t change the state that our country is in, they at least let me find the humor in some of the craziness that is taking place. Here are a few pictures and cartoon that have left me laughing out loud… literally. Enjoy!


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This cartoon is for the uninformed voter. But it also is a commentary on how you can like one party, but actually need the policies created by another. I guess that’s what’s so interesting about politics. You have to choose what issues are most relevant and important to your life, and vote accordingly. Whether you vote for a party for moral reasons, or because you truly believe in their message, that’s none of my business. But it sure does suck when you realize the party you voted for doesn’t actually support you the way you thought they would. So like the cartoon says, good luck with those health bills. I’m sure you’ll be inspired to make America great again after you pay those off.


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I am a feminist at heart. I believe that women should receive equal pay, not be told what to do with their own bodies, and much more. It’s honestly ridiculous that we still have to fight for these things in 2017. But one thing I will say is that I wish the Women’s March had a more defined message. I feel that as women, especially now, we have so much to fight for, so many points to make, that I’m not sure we were able to cohesively get our point(s) across during the March.

Some people had anti-Trump signs, others were talking about freedom of choice with our bodies, some were protesting equal pay, and others just seemed happy to be there. But this picture, in particular, made me laugh. They say a picture is worth 1000 words, and now I see why. I’m not posting this to ruffle anyone’s feathers or to generalize. There were plenty of white women who voted for Hillary, but across the board, the white women demographic predominately voted for Trump.

With Trump’s history of sexual assault and his views on planned parenthood, this picture is a commentary on the turnout of white women at the Women’s March, but also their turnout during the election. For everything that the Women’s March stood for, and the numbers behind who (what demographics) voted for whom during the election, this picture shows that we should all think about what we support, and stand behind those thoughts with actions. Every decision we make has a consequence, so make a decision that you can live with.


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On that note, it’s been less than a month that we’ve been without Obama in office and it honestly feels like a bad break up. Have you ever seen someone break up with their ex and go on to live a wonderful life? Yup, that’s President Obama. On vacation and without a care in the world, all I can say is, “I miss you!” Social media has been hilarious, and I thought I would share one of many funny posts that have been circulating. For more, be sure to check Twitter.


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Finally, I thought I would close this post with a picture of this little guy during the Women’s March. Definitely a young political activist in the making! All I can stay is stay woke people, and if these pictures didn’t cheer you up, take a nap. You’ll probably feel better after.

Best Cold Remedies On The Market

You’ve tried so hard to avoid it. You have hand sanitizer in your bag, you eat an apple every day, you’re always drinking water, and you avoid coughing people like the plague… but you’re sick… again. Someone managed to sneeze on you while you were waiting in line for lunch, or maybe the weather change got the best of you, so what now? While being sick is no fun, the best thing you can do now is limit the length of your sickness. Here is how I prevent and get over my colds fast. Maybe these tips and remedies can help you.

Ginger Tea

You can always buy the pre-made ginger tea packets in the coffee and tea aisle of your local grocery story, but I prefer the real thing. It doesn’t get much healthier than that! Next time you’re at the super market, be sure to pick up ginger.

To make the tea, grade some ginger into a pot of water and bring it to a boil. Strain the ginger out after it has boiled for at least 15 minutes and vuala… you have ginger tea! Caution, it’s “spicy” and has a nice burn to it, but it clears up your sinuses and whatever else you might have going on. Sweetener might be necessary, so have some honey on hand as well to make the drink tasty or at least bearable. I generally drink it right before bed and wake up feeling significantly better.

Zicam

I don’t know what is in Zicam, but it works like magic! I can be sick one day, and two days later I’m healed. The product does a great job of shortening my colds after I get them. Whether you get the nose swabs or the chewables, both are excellent products. Keep in mind that Zicam has its best results the sooner you use it. Don’t think that a slight cough or sneeze happened by chance. Use Zicam and prevent the cold altogether. But if you are sick already, it’ll make you feel 100 times better.

Emergen-C

Just like Zicam, this product works best when you first feel the cold coming on. But at this point, you already have one, and that’s okay. Continue to take this throughout your cold because a little boost of vitamin C can’t hurt you. Your body needs all the help it can get, so find a glass of water, let the powder dissolve, and drink up!

Multi-Vitamins

You should probably be taking this every day whether you’re sick or not, but if you haven’t, now is a perfect time to start. You honestly have nothing to lose. Just like Emergen-C, it can’t hurt, and your body will probably thank you for it later. Help yourself rebuild by taking a multi-vitamin of your choice. There are some many to choose from, and the benefits of taking it are endless.

Juice Plus

Chances are you’re not getting your daily recommended dose of fruits and vegetables. I mean, who is? But instead of trying to change your diet altogether, just get Juice Plus. Juice Plus is gummy or pill supplements that can help you bridge the gap between the healthy foods and nutrients that you should be eating, and what your actual intake is. In each serving, you get the benefits of 30 different fruits and vegetables. The gummies taste great, and the good part is you can eat as many as you want because they’re just fruits and veggies. Also, these are okay for NCAA athletes to consume, so consider them when you’re sick and even when you’re not. I’m positive you’ll feel the difference.

I know being sick is no fun, but it’s bound to happen to all of us. Hopefully, these tips can put you on a fast track to wellness. Share you best “get well” tips in the comments below, and as always, try your best to say healthy!

Healthy Super Bowl Snacks

The time has arrived once again! You know what I mean. The best commercials of the year are about to air, Lady Gaga is about to do her thang on stage, oh yeah, and a little football too. Yes, I’m talking about the Super Bowl! Go Falcons!!

It’s a big night; you’re probably going to have friends over or are going to a friend’s house to watch the game. More importantly, you’re probably going to be hungry. While pizza, wings, and other foods will be present, be sure that a few healthy options are available as well. Your new year’s resolution to eat healthy doesn’t have to go out the door just because of this Falcons vs. Patriots match-up. With that said, here are some healthy and yummy options to put on your snack table this Super Bowl Sunday!


Yogurt Filled Raspberries

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Doesn’t that sound great? Well, unless you’re allergic to raspberries of course, and if so, just ignore this one.

Ingredients/Supplies:

  • Raspberries
  • Yogurt
  • Gallon freezer bag
  • Scissors

Buy a pack or two of fresh raspberries, a tub of your favorite yogurt (Noosa and Siggi’s are really great brands), and a gallon freezer bag. On the day of, wash the raspberries, towel-dry them, and place them on a plate, baking sheet or flat surface.

Spoon your yogurt of choice into the gallon freezer bag. Close the bag and use scissors to snip a small opening to one of the bottom corners of the freezer bag. Be careful not to cut off a big piece because you want to use the bag as a yogurt applicator, similar to how frosting applicators allow for detailed cake decorating.

From there take each raspberry and use your yogurt applicator to squeeze the yogurt into the raspberry hollow. Place the filled raspberries on your serving plate and put them in the freezer or refrigerator depending on how much time you have. You want this snacks to be cold but not frozen when you serve them. They’re really delicious and healthy snacks to munch on!


Sweet and Salty Chickpeas

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I love kettle corn but sometimes it’s too much sugar, and if you can’t get your hands on the Boom Chicka Pop’s sweet and salty popcorn, or even if you can, this is a great alternative.

Ingredients/Supplies:

  • 2-3 cans of garbanzo beans/chickpeas
  • Pink Himalayan salt (any salt will do)
  • Brown sugar
  • Baking sheet
  • Non-stick spray

Open your cans of chickpeas, rinse them off, and let them sit spread out on a paper towel until dry. The key to this is that they must be dry to ensure the best results. When dry, preheat your oven to 425 degrees, lightly grease a baking sheet, and pop the chickpeas in the oven. Let the chickpeas roast for 10 minutes then remove the baking sheet from the oven and shake the chickpeas around. Return the baking sheet with the chickpeas to the oven for 10 more minutes of roasting.

While roasting for the second time, combine two parts brown sugar to one part salt in a bowl. Remove the chickpeas from the oven and sprinkle the mixture on them. Be sure to shake the pan around to ensure maximum coverage. Then return the chickpeas to the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until they are brown and crunchy. After, let the chickpeas cool and place them in the bowl you plan to serve them in. These are definitely a hit, and the best part is they have more protein than popcorn!


Apple Cinnamon Crisps

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An apple a day keeps the doctor away, so why not make the apple taste even better?

Ingredients/Supplies:

  • 8 apples
  • Cinnamon
  • Brown Sugar
  • Baking sheet(s)
  • Non-stick spray

Cut your apples into thin 1/8th thick slices. You don’t have to be exact, but the closer you can get to that measurement, the better. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees and in a bowl mix the apple slices with brown sugar and cinnamon. Of course, the less sugar you use, the healthier the snack will be. Spray a baking sheet(s) and place the apple on there without allowing them to overlap. Let the apples bake for 2-3 hours until dry and soft. After, let them cool completely and then serve. They’re yummy and definitely a hit at any event.

So whether you’re into football or just want to watch the halftime show and the commercials, you won’t go hungry with these snacks. I’m sure they’ll be a hit no matter where or with whom you plan to watch. So kick back, relax and cheer on your favorite team (the Falcons) to a Super Bowl 51 victory!

Introduction to a Minimalist Closet

MMinimalism. If you type it in on YouTube, you will come across a variety of videos. You’ll find the minimalist who owns two shirts, one pair of pants, shoes, and a toothbrush. You’ll find the minimalist that follows the black and white color pallet for everything they own. You might even find the minimalist that swears it only takes a day to turn your junk filled life into a clean and pristine existence. But then there are “minimalists” like me. While I’m not on YouTube, I feel as though I’ve watched enough videos on minimalism to realize it’s a simple concept, but it isn’t easily executed.

For the last six months, I’ve worked on becoming a minimalist, but I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I own too much stuff. I go through these phases where I’m ready to sell half of my belongings on eBay because I don’t feel they are necessary for my lifestyle. Then a week later I’m online shopping for a new pair of booties to add to my “collection” and at Sephora purchasing my fifth brightening face mask to grace my vanity this month.

While I am still working towards minimalism, I realize that it’s not an overnight process, and in some cases, it’s not even a six-month process. If you’re interested in minimalism, this is definitely the blog post for you, and even if you’re not you might learn a thing or two.

For this post, we’ll be focusing on your closet. This is where I tend to struggle the most. Here are a few dos and don’ts to get you started.


Do

Take Clothes Off Hangers

This is a good place to start because if you don’t do this, I promise you, you’ll be more likely to keep clothes that you don’t even wear or like. Putting them in a pile allows you to pick them up, hold them in your hands, take a good hard look at them and figure out if the item “brings you joy.”

Try Each Item On

No, I haven’t read The Life-Changing Magic of Tiding Up by Marie Kondo, and honestly I don’t plan on doing so. From all the videos I’ve watched I think I get the gist. Hold the item up or try them on. If it doesn’t bring you joy than don’t keep it. So that means, if it doesn’t fit or flatter your current body, not the body you plan to have in the summer, if it’s not your color, if it’s ripped… get rid of it! Those are the clothing items that make you feel like you don’t have anything to wear in a closet full of clothes. You ultimately want your closet to be full of clothes that you absolutely adore, so if a clothing item doesn’t fit those criteria it has to go.

Create Secondary Piles

Clearly, you won’t keep everything, and sometimes there are things you’re on the fence about. First, create plies for things that you want to sell, donate, or that you ought to keep. For the things you might want to keep, pack them up in a box and store them away somewhere. If in 30 days you haven’t reached for them or missed them at all it might be time to get rid of them. Add them to the sell or donate pile and discard of them.

Sell or Donate

Since we paid good money for our clothes we at least want to get some money back in return. I often sell on eBay, Poshmark, Vinted, and even at Plato’s Closet. Plato’s Closet is convenient because you get cash right away, but sometimes the return for your clothes isn’t the best. For example, if they feel that they can sell your item for $10 they will give you #3.50 for it. “Really, just $3.50,” is what I thought, but that’s better than nothing. If you don’t need immediate cash it might be better to go the eBay, Poshmark, or Vinted route. Each site is better at selling certain items than others, (i.e. Poshmark is great for selling women’s clothing and eBay is a good site for selling athletic wear) but the return is usually better than Plato’s Closet. If all else fails, donate it! There is no sense in keeping clothes you don’t wear or like around.


Don’t

Let Price Hold You Back

Often, we don’t want to sell our clothes because they cost so much money in the first place. It was expensive but having it hang in your closet unused isn’t going to help you. Maybe you can sell if for money or maybe you’ll just have to donate it. But letting it sit in your closet cluttering up your life is not an option. Don’t let the price tag trick you into keeping things you don’t use.

Create A Uniform

Yes, some of the most successful people like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg all created uniforms for themselves. Their uniforms generally consist of something like a black shirt, dad jeans, and tennis shoes. But let’s be honest, no twenty-something female is trying to wear the same thing every day. I’m all about expressing my own style and of course not about the dad jeans, so a uniform doesn’t really work for me. Instead, I find it easier to establish hard and fast rules for what I wear. For example, bodycon items don’t look good on me. I simply don’t have the body for them and while it’s 2017 and fashion rules don’t matter anymore, I just don’t feel comfortable in that clothing. With that said, one of my rules is “no bodycon clothing”. This makes it easy for me when I go shopping, especially online. When I see a bodycon skirt that I like and it looks fabulous on the model, I must remind myself that I don’t wear bodycon items and the reasons why. These rules help to take the thinking out of the many options you’re faced with while shopping. Creating rules for your style saves your wallet, and your minimalist wardrobe.

I would love to say that after reading this post, you’re well on your way to minimalism, but you probably still have a long way to go, I know I do. Minimalism is a lifestyle not something you do once. The idea of living with solely what you need is an interesting philosophy and your wardrobe is a great place to start if you’re interested. But if you are interested, hopefully this post was helpful in jumpstarting you. Let me know in the comments down below your thoughts on minimalism, particularly when it comes to your wardrobe, and any steps you’ve taken to live more simply.

 

Wanderlust Bucket List

Last year I was fortunate enough to travel to Paris and Nice, France and Montreux, Switzerland with my division one college basketball team for our foreign tour. While across the pond, I realized just how amazing it is to experience other cultures and learn about how other people live life outside of America. The whole experience sparked a huge movement of wanderlust within me, and now all I do is dream about where I want to visit next. We all have places that we’ve always wanted to visit, and for me to be able to go to many of these locations, it will take a lot of planning and a considerable amount of money. Though a broke college student, I still hope to visit these places in the near future, so here is a list of five places I would love to visit, and a few activities/locations in those cities that I must experience while I’m there.

We all have places that we’ve always wanted to visit, and for me to be able to go to many of these sites, it will take a lot of planning and a considerable amount of money. Though a broke college student, I still hope to visit these locations in the near future. So here is a list of five places I would love to visit, and a few activities/locations in those cities that I must experience while I’m there.


 Dubai

Honestly, I hadn’t thought about visiting Dubai until I looked into an MBA program that would allow me to study there for 6 weeks. Now, I’m still unsure if I want to apply to the MBA program, but am firm in my thoughts that I need to visit Dubai. Just from the pictures, it looks like a beautiful and amazing city, but here are a few places I have to check off of my bucket list when I go.

Burj Khalifa

 

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Burj Khalifa

 

This is the tallest building in the world, and it beats its closest competition by 1000 feet. I’m not even a fan of heights, but it would be unfortunate to go all the way to Dubai and not go up to the Burj Khalifa observation deck.

The Palm Islands

 

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Palm Islands

 

The Palm Islands are man-made islands, where each branch of the palm is home to beautiful beaches, million dollar hotels, homes, and even shopping malls. I would love to explore the Palm Islands in two ways. First, through tram or subway to actually see what it’s like to be on the ground there. Second, by helicopter, because it would be awesome to witness the sheer magnitude and beauty of these islands from above.

Desert Safari

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Desert of Dubai

Just as I want to see the city, I definitely have to see the desert too. In my mind I picture myself riding through the desert on a camel or sand surfing, but rolling through the sandy dunes of Dubai on a 4×4 doesn’t sound so bad either. Whatever form of transportation I use, seeing the desert is definitely on my bucket list.


Cape Town

After watching Ben Brown and Nicole Eddy vlogs on YouTube, I’m sold on the fact that Cape Town is a place I must visit. First, I highly recommend that you go watch their vlogs. Nicole is from South Africa so much of her content shows her doing fun things around the city of Cape Town. Once you see some of the amazing activities she does, Cape Town will be on your bucket list as well!

Boulders Beach

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Boulders Beach

This isn’t your average beach… there are penguins! Who doesn’t love penguins? I don’t know about you, but it’s not every day that you get to interact with some of nature’s most interesting creatures in such a warm climate. I’ll be sure to bring my camera and you should too!

Table Mountain & Lion’s Head

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Table Mountain & Lion’s Head

I wouldn’t say I’m a big outdoorsy person, but I’m definitely one for a view. I would love to hike Table Mountain all the way to Lion’s Head not only for the great workout but for the fantastic view. You can see the whole city from up there!

Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point

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Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point

Ever wonder why we have five oceans, but in reality, it’s all one big body of water? Well, here is the spot where you can see the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet. Trust me, you can really see the difference when the cold water from the west meets the warm water from the east. This activity ranks right up there with standing on the equator for me.


Vancouver

After spending the majority of my summer in the pacific northwest, I have a big appreciation for the weather, landscape, and overall beauty of the area. I’ve heard it only gets prettier as you head north into Canada. Sad that I didn’t make the trip to Vancouver when I was only five hours away, I plan to head back to the Northwest sometime in the near future to see all that Vancouver has to offer.

Capilano Suspension Bridge

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Capilano Suspension Bridge

Why not get your heart racing as you cross a 450-foot suspension bridge hanging 230 feet above the Capilano River? It’s a true tree top adventure! While this is supposedly not a free experience, if you’re running a little low on cash you can always cross the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge instead, it’s free.

Granville Island Public Market

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Granville Island Public Market

There is nothing like a public market. Fresh food, good people, and excellent homemade healthy products for sale. The market on Grandville Island is considered to be a gem of Vancouver, so if you’re ever hungry, and you will be, be sure to head that way for a bite to eat.

Gastown

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Gastown

Cobblestone streets, beautiful Victorian architecture, and an iconic steam clock can all be found in Gastown. Gastown is one of the most popular neighborhoods in Vancouver for tourists to visit, so why not check it off of your bucket list? There are beautiful shop and restaurants everywhere, so you won’t get board.


Iceland

Yes, Iceland is a country, not a city, but there were just too many awesome activities and place to visit that I couldn’t narrow it down to just one city.

Blue Lagoon

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Blue Lagoon

While the Blue Lagoon isn’t a natural lagoon, it’s still pretty cool! It originally started as a small pool of runoff water from a geothermal plant nearby. Now, out of Iceland’s 1.3 million annual visitors, 70% visit the lagoon. Just as a heads up, the lagoon is 50 minutes away from Reykjavik, Iceland’s capital. While many people fly into Reykjavik, the lagoon is actually closer to the Keflavik airport, so plan accordingly.

Northern Lights

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Northern Lights

There are only so many places in the world that you can see the Northern Lights and Iceland is one of them. Finally, a light show that you don’t have to pay for and it’s all natural! The Northern Lights shine when charged particles from the sun enter the atmosphere and collide with gas atoms. But put simply, the world is kind of amazing and everyone once in a while, it gives you a breathtaking lights show, so don’t miss out!

Crystal Caves

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Crystal Caves

I would love to take a tour of an ice cave. While they are a bit pricy, around $150 USD, I think it’s worth it. When will you ever get another chance to do this? I’m sure there is nothing like walking through a cave walled with ice, and all you can see are different shades of blue surrounding you. It definitely takes exploring to a whole new level!


Santorini

Does Greece ever sound like a bad idea? I didn’t think so. If you’re a beach person, you can’t go wrong with visiting Santorini. Chances are you’ve already seen a million pictures of the place on Pinterest. And if you’re an Instagram fanatic, the architecture and beachy back drop will totally be your aesthetic, just bring your camera and start snapping.

See the Blue Domes

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Blue Domes

 

It’s one thing to see these domes in pictures, but I would rather see them for myself. Not only is the whole area aesthetically pleasing with the white buildings and blue domes, but I couldn’t think of a more instagramable picture. Grab and friend and have a photo shoot. It’s not like you go to Santorini every day.

Red Beach

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Red Beach

Just steps away from the ancient site of Akrotiri, you can walk the volcanic and rocky beach of Red Beach. While the beach is small and often crowded, it’s worth the experience, even if it’s just to see it from afar.

Museum of Wine

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Koutsoyannopoulos Winery

I don’t like to drink, but I will make an exception for wine, and I’m sure wine tastes better in paradise. The Koutsoyannopoulos family has a museum of wine in the beautiful village of Messara, and the museum is housed in a natural cave. After the tour, you get a chance to taste four of the best wines that the winery produces. If you claim to not be a wine person, you probably haven’t been drinking the best ones. Why not start in Santorini?

These are just a few of the places that I’m dying to visit and hopefully I can do so in the next year or two. While the list goes on-and-on, I would love to hear where you guy plan on visiting, or even places that you just wanderlust about. Share them in the comment below!

 

Things I’m Loving

January is kind of a weird month. The holidays are over and soon after the first of the month, the motivation to start new wears off. No wonder so many people suffer from post-holiday depression. If you are one of those people, hopefully, one or all items on this list can cheer you up, or even inspire you to make a Things I’m Loving list of your own. Chocolate, clothes, movies and me are among many of the things that I’ve loved recently, so let’s get into it!

Chocolove Xoxox Extreme Dark Chocolate

I wouldn’t say that I have a sweet tooth, but I have a deep love for dark chocolate in its purest form. That’s probably why I love this chocolate bar so much. It is extreme dark chocolate, and by “extreme” I mean 88% cocoa content. I found it at my local grocery story and had to try it. I was definitely not disappointed! Though I found it at my local store, you can find it at stores like Whole Foods or Wild Oats. It satisfies my craving for chocolate but isn’t overly sweet like other candy or chocolate bars with only 4 grams of sugar per serving. That’s pretty good if you ask me! Chacolove also engages in sustainability and social responsibility by using fair trade chocolate, contributing to the World Cocoa Foundation, and funding projects at the USDA among other things. So why not enjoy a sweet treat and know that you’re supporting a company that is environmentally responsible?

Me time

I would say I’m a pretty independent person and genuinely enjoy my own company, but recently I’ve taken that to a whole new level. I have taken myself to the movies, gone to a pottery studio to paint, and have signed up for a local cooking class all by myself. As we head into a month that constantly tells us that we need someone else to validate our own existence, I am here to say that you don’t. Love yourself, enjoy “you” time, and take yourself on dates. You don’t need anyone else to do that for you. One thing that I’ve realized by doing these things alone is that I can actually figure out what I like to do, not what I like to do because the people around me liked to do it. I’m generating my own opinions, I learning more about myself, and I’m having fun while doing it. You should try it sometime!

Aritzia Clothing

I don’t buy clothes often, but recently I’ve been loving the camisoles from Aritizia. They are simple, dainty, and can be dressed up or down. Here is a link to one of the styles I’ve been loving. But outside of just the camisoles, I love the style of Aritzia clothing. Everything looks streamline and fashionable. It’s a little pricy, but their clothes are quality and do last. So while I won’t buy a lot from them, the investment is worth the money.

La La Land

I dedicated a whole post to this movie, so in case you missed it, here is the link. Outside of the wonderful plotline of modern love, career, and pulling the best out of each other in a relationship, I loved Mia’s (Emma Stone) fashion sense in the move. I was contemplating whether to do a whole post dedicated to the dresses she wore, but for now, I will stick to a mention in Things I’m Loving. She has inspired me to find joy in wearing beautiful and elegant dresses that are classy, aka not skin tight and revealing. While it’s not exactly sundress weather where I live, I’ll be sure to channel my inner Mia when spring rolls around. Oh, and the La La Land soundtrack. Give it a listen! You won’t regret it.

These are just a few Things I’m Loving right now. What about you? Spread the love and comment some of the things you’ve been loving down below!

 

Lush Cosmetics and LGBTQ Inclusion

When it comes to Lush Cosmetics, there is a lot to rave about. I recently “discovered this brand late last year, and by “discovered” I mean, I always knew Lush Cosmetics existed, but never got around to trying their products. That all changed in July of 2016 when I strolled through a mall in Portland and decided to walk in. While I will get into my favorite Lush products in a later post, I want to take a moment to commend Lush for boldly doing what many companies will not.

As a heterosexual female, sometimes it’s hard to see the privilege that I have of looking at Valentine’s Day ads, or ads in general, that affirm romantic love as I experience it, between a man and a woman. But Lush recently switched it up in their January 19th Valentine’s Day advertisement on Instagram. The picture featured two men sharing a laugh and laying on each other in a bath tub full of swirling pink water.

I remember scrolling through my feed and thinking, “Wow, this is different,” almost shocking. It isn’t often that companies, let alone well-known companies, use their voice and their reach to state their opinion on social issues. Lush is a cosmetics company focused on skincare and makeup; it is not on their agenda to speak up about LGBTQ issues of equality, but I appreciate them for doing so.

Gay marriage was legalized in the summer of 2015, and while many people have accepted this, I feel as though in the corporate world, gay love is still taboo. This is weird because, in the world of marketing, advertising, and sales, love, lust, and sex all sell. Just think about the most recent perfume or underwear advertisement you’ve seen. The only problem is, it’s heterosexual love, lust, and sex that sells, not homosexual.

Truthfully, it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s day or February to recognize the skew that our society has towards heterosexual love and its depiction in advertisements, they’re everywhere. But when will this change? When will the ads become more inclusive? For something to become a norm, it must be ingrained into the everyday fabric of society. This means that for us to see gay love as a norm and not taboo on a corporate level, we need to see it more often in society. Advertisements are a good place to start, and Lush did a great job of pushing the LGBTQ love and inclusion agenda.

This is not to say that Lush is the only company doing this. Cover Girl Cosmetics recently introduced their first Cover Boy toward the end of 2016, and Urban Outfitters does an excellent job of including LGBTQ members in their advertising content as well. It’s about time that corporate companies get with the times and acknowledge a large part of their consumer base. Companies like Lush, Urban, and Cover Girl have just begun to scratch the surface.

All in all, I am very impressed with Lush Cosmetics and their willingness to become pioneers for LGBTQ equality in corporate advertising. If we want things to be seen as normal, we must be the ones to make them more visible and accepted in our everyday lives. Lush took the first step with their Valentine’s Day advertisement last week, and I think other companies should do the same.