Friday’s Few

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Hey Cats!

Happy Fri-Yay! This week has been so busy that I don’t even know where it went. But it’s been fun! Last night, I drove downtown to have dinner with my mom, who’s in town for training, so it was great to see her! After work today, I’m going into full-on vacation mode, with pedicures at 6, then finishing up shopping, packing, and getting to sleep early for our 5 am flight Sunday morning. It will be here before I know it! Here’s what I’ve been loving this week:

1.College Station’s Best

Napa Flats CS (2)

So I found this list  of the 45 Best Places to Eat in College Station and it made me want to return to Aggieland for the sole reason of eating. I’m proud to say that I’ve eaten at most of those places (if I could choose my last meal, it would def be from Napa Flats), but there’s a few that are new! And some that I’ve missed. Just another reason to go back! If you live there, try some for me!

2. Lyon and Post

Lyon-post

I’ve been seeing other bloggers talk about Lyon + Post for a while now, but I didn’t really know what it was so I just ignored it until I saw that one of my favorite bloggers (Brenna from Chic Street Style) scored a mega deal on an adorable dress, and was intrigued. After perusing the site, I discovered that it’s a site that sends you clothing to try on but doesn’t charge you for any of it unless you keep it! Which is great for those of us who are short and are sometimes scared to buy things online. They have great brands like Elizabeth and James, BB Dakota, Vince, and more!  There’s no subscription fee, and you get to try before you buy, just like a brick and mortar store! It vaguely reminds me of “About the Fit”, the fictional company that Anne Hathaway’s character runs in The Intern (which is a fabulous movie, by the way. It motivates me to no end to be the ultimate girlboss, and I watched it with my ex-boyfriend and he hated it and that’s part of the reason he’s not my boyfriend anymore. Bye). I’m waiting until I return from vacation to send for my first batch of clothes, but I’ve already got my eyes on a few things! If you’re interested, register here to get a $30 credit for your first purchase!

3. White Queso

white queso

White queso is my latest obsession. Actually, any queso, but I’ve been on a particular quest for queso blanco since Cinco de Mayo. The clinical staff in my office had fajitas catered on Cinco de Mayo from a local Mexican food restaurant, and they had white queso. One of my coworkers was telling me how delish it was, so obviously I had to go sneak some. Then I kept finding reasons to go up to the front, but I would actually just stop by the break room and sneak a chip loaded with queso. I’m not proud, but I’m also not sorry about it. Anyways, right after the queso-swiping incident, I came across this recipe for white queso from The Baking Fairy, so obviously I pinned it. Some of my friends and I are planning on grilling dinner one night soon, and I’m definitely making this!

4. GIF of the Week

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This is how I feel that VACATION IS HERE!!!!! I literally cannot control myself. P.S., still trying to decide how I feel about Real Housewives of Dallas. I think Real Housewives of Houston would have been better, but Andy didn’t ask me. But considering the above, maybe he should have. ALSO: speaking of vacation: I will not be posting next week…sorry! I think it’s just time for a break from everything. But! Check back the following week, because I will have plenty of beach content!!

That’s all for meow- see you in a week!

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One & Done Dinner- Salmon, Sprouts, & Sweet Potato

Hey Cats!

I hope everyone is having a good week! I’ve got a few projects coming up at work, so it has been a busy week, and it’s only Wednesday! When life gets busy, it can be really easy to eat whatever’s fast and doesn’t require a sink full of dishes. So basically Chick-Fil-A, pasta, or anything else that’s probably fried and severely lacking in nutritional value. However, I’ve found that eating crap when you’re busy makes you feel even worse and slows you down when you don’t have time to be slowed down. Lately, I’ve been experimenting to come up with healthy dinners that are more exciting than my usual chicken-quinoa-roasted brussels sprouts combo, and require less clean up. I crafted this little trio last week and it’s already made a repeat appearance! Pecan-crusted salmon, a baked sweet potato, and roasted Brussels sprouts (lol if you thought I could stray from this) with goat cheese- sounds pretty involved, right? False. Let me show you how it’s done.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

-1 small sweet potato

-1 portion of salmon (I either get the 4oz serving from the fish counter or get a large piece and cut it in 3rds and freeze the rest!)

-1 tablespoon of butter

-1 tablespoon chopped pecans

-1 tablespoon grated parmesan

-1 tsp dry ranch dressing mix

-1/2 cup brussels sprouts,  quartered

-olive oil

-honey

-goat cheese crumbles

-almond butter (optional but HIGHLY recommended. Highly)

Here’s what you do:

1.First, you’ll need to bake the sweet potato by itself for a bit. Wash your sweet potato and poke holes all over with a fork- just don’t stab yourself (I have done this. Raise your hand if you’re not surprised). Bake at 400 for 30-45 minutes, depending on the size of your tuber. You can just place it on the middle rack of your oven, no pan needed!

2. While your sweet potato is baking, do what you need to do. Live your life. Unload your dishwasher. Throw a load of laundry on. Do your workout for the day. Sit on the couch and watch trash tv. Neglect to write a blog post. It’s up to you. This is your time.

3. When your timer has about 15 minutes left, prepare the rest of your dinner for baking. Cover a baking sheet with foil whilst rejoicing that this is the only thing you will have to wash.

4. Prepare the salmon by following steps 1-4 of this recipe. Yes, I’ve made this before, but it was solo. This time it has friends. If you’re not feeling fancy, you can always simply season your salmon with salt, pepper, and dill!

5. Next, prepare your sprouts. Here’s my process: chop off the hard stem on the bottom, hopefully taking the outer leaves with it. Peel off a few layers of leaves until it looks clean. (always wash them first, by the way) Chop the little sprout in half, then in quarters. If the quarters are still large, I’ll chop them again! Toss them in olive oil, salt, and pepper- this can be done on the pan!

6. Then, assemble the pan. Place the salmon on one side, sprouts on the other, and the sweet potato in the middle. Fits perfectly!

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7. Increase the heat to 425, and bake everything for another 20 minutes, until the salmon is cooked thoroughly and the sprouts are crispy!

8. Next, dress it up! I drizzled honey and crumbled goat cheese on the brussels sprouts, thanks to Bites of Bri. Ugh, so good I nearly cried. Then, instead of cinnamon and sugar on my sweet potato, I put a dollop of almond butter on top after a recommendation from my coworker (thanks, Natalie!). Changed. My. Life. It’s so creamy and delicious. I was afraid it would be too sweet but it is excellent. You will die. And then come back to life to thank me profusely.

9. Enjoy your gourmet dinner and then enjoy only washing one pan!

Side note: when I told my mom about this, I kept going on about how “it only took one pan!”. Eventually she asked me, “Is that because you only have one pan?”. No, it’s because I’m lazy. But honestly, I’m not even surprised, because I also told her that day that I had made toast in my oven in a loaf pan. Because I’m resourceful. And I’m not married so people don’t think I need/want nice kitchen appliances such as a toaster. I digress.

Do you have any one-and-done dinners? Please share, I hate washing dishes!

That’s all for meow!
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Last Week’s Look

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Hey Cats!

The weekend has flown by! I went to College Station this weekend with my parents, and it was great to be back at my favorite place on earth, as always. We went to a baseball game with a few of my friends and got incredibly sunburned, then we visited a few of our favorite restaurants, stores, and places on campus. Now I’m back in Houston praying it doesn’t flood again this week!

Today, I’ve decided to do “Last Week’s Look”. It was supposed to be “Last Night’s Look” but I had massive technical difficulties Friday morning and I was going to be late to work so I had to cut my losses.  My friend and I went to Aggie Muster last Thursday, and I loved my outfit! It’s one that will be on repeat for quite a while this spring and summer I’m sure!
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Everything is linked below- Happy Shopping!

chambray dress

dress (on sale!)

cardigan

cardigan

sandals

sandals

morgan studs

earrings

ML nameplate

necklace (on sale!)

andy bracelet

bracelet

That’s all for meow!
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How To: Quit the Gym

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Hey Cats!

 Happy Wednesday! This week has gotten off to an interesting start. Sunday night and early Monday morning, Houston and the surrounding areas flooded, so Monday I worked from home. Fortunately, it wasn’t terrible in the area I live in, but I have teacher friends who may not be able to go to work at all this week- yikes! We are expecting more rain this week, so please keep Houston and the surrounding areas in your prayers!

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For those of you who are a bit confused by the title of this blog post, let me explain. My last year of college, I was obsessed with going to the gym. I went every day and it  became my favorite pastime, stress relief, and way to avoid homework. I was convinced that it would be a lasting habit. Well, then I started working full time and no longer had the spacious, free rec center filled with courteous individuals, and working out got to be really difficult.

After searching for a gym with an indoor track for weeks, I found none. I refused to use the treadmill in my apartment and after a few weeks without doing my ab circuit or lifting weights, I started to notice a change in my appearance, my energy level, and my mood. So I hastily bought a membership to what I deemed the best replacement, a large local gym that was affordable and close to my office.

And I hated it. It was so crowded at 6 pm that I rarely was able to finish a workout. People were rude and literally told me I was in their way. And don’t get me started on the creepy men that stared all the time. I missed the rec center, the indoor track, and boys that didn’t make me feel uncomfortable. Sometimes I cried about it, not a joke.

I toughed it out for a while, but ended up going to the gym only once or twice a week. I tried Pure Barre but I decided it was for wimps (sorry if you like, love it.). I was so frustrated with how my level of fitness had fallen in the past few months, but I didn’t know what to do. I was tired of paying for a gym I didn’t use, but I didn’t want to have zero options.

My mom had been suggesting for months that I try to find workout videos and use the gym in my apartment complex. I kept telling her that workout videos were for wimpy girls and I only liked to run on the actual ground and lift real weights, so no thank you. But out of desperation, I started searching one day, and came across the Nike Training Club app. I was skeptical, but I perused the workouts and they looked really great! They incorporated cardio and strength training which was perfect. So I did it. I quit the gym. No more monthly fees, no more frustration over unfinished workouts, no more excuses for not getting a workout in.

As much as I loved the gym, it just doesn’t fit into my life anymore. It was a strange transition, but I’m so glad I quit the gym. Here are some tips for those of you who are in a similar situation:

  1. Find a program you love. Whether it’s the Nike Training Club, Blogilates, or a routine from a personal trainer, the possibilities are endless! Actually, since I have someone telling me what to do, I’ve noticed more consistent results, as opposed to when I would just wander around the weight room and say, “oh this looks like something I can do without embarrassing myself!”. Switch it up when you get bored, that’s the beauty of quitting the gym!
  2. Invest in equipment. You’ll have to choose your program first, but I would suggest starting with a yoga mat and a pair of hand weights at the very least. I use the mat for all floor exercises, and the hand weights for a variety of exercises, like lunges, arm presses, and abs. You can expand into a medicine ball and resistance bands, too! At first, I didn’t want to spend the money on these things, but compared to a gym membership it’s pretty reasonable. Plus, they do not have to be expensive- both of mine are from Marshall’s!
  3. Use your resources. Earlier I mentioned that I did not want to use the treadmill in my apartment complex. Well. I had to get over that. Obviously, I can’t go for a run inside my apartment. If your apartment complex has a treadmill, use it-you pay for it! I only use it when it rains or when I want a quick run, because I feel like a hamster on treadmills. I found a small neighborhood behind my apartment complex that I’ve been running through when the weather is nice. It’s full of old people, so it seems pretty safe. But always be mindful of your surroundings!
  4. Do not stop with the coordinated workout outfits. Hi, sometimes the only reason I could convince myself to go to the gym was by wearing my LuluLemon tights. Not a joke. So I still like to look cutie, even if I’m by myself.
  5. Break it up. If you can’t stand the thought of working out at home all the time, consider attending a workout class once a week or so.
  6. Stick to it. It can be difficult to keep yourself accountable to a workout plan when you can literally walk two steps and plant yourself on the couch for the evening. But if I can do it, so can you! I like to make it a challenge for myself. I never turn on the TV until I’ve finished my workout. I also like to have a set time to start. I come home, eat a snack and am ready to go at 5:45. Trying to get back into the routine is extremely difficult, but once you’re used to it again, you start looking forward to it!

So there you have it. Did I convince you to quit the gym? It’s definitely easier than I thought! I don’t think this will be a forever fitness routine for me, but it’s working right now! Do you exercise at home or go to a gym? Which do you prefer? Let me know!

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Hey Cats!

As with most holidays except Christmas, Mother’s Day is sneaking up on me. Luckily, we’ve still got a few weeks, so there will be no scrambling to find a gift here! And for those of you who are like me, this serves as your official reminder: Mother’s Day is May 8. You’re welcome.

Usually, my sister and I team up to get my mom something “big”. I’ve already planned to give my mom one of my Junior League cookbooks, but I think I’m going to still go in with my sister! I just won’t be posting what we’re actually getting her on the blog, because she is a faithful reader (hi mom!). Also, she knows about the cookbook, so it’s fine.

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Yes, this is myself and my mother at my first birthday party. You’re welcome. And I still make that face.

Some moms are hard to shop for. Sometimes my mom has pointed out things she likes, which makes things really easy, but other times it’s like trying to find your glasses in your suitcase after you’ve already taken out your contacts: quite the challenge. To try and make that challenge easier for you all, I’ve put together a little list. Hopefully this helps you find the perfect gift for your mom!

For the Trendy Mom:

sperry-sneakers

My mom has mentioned several times that she’s been wanting some leopard slip-on sneakers, like this pair from Sperry. How cute are they? I would definitely have to get a matching pair for myself. Is leopard a little too wild for your mom? Try this neutral pair, this rose gold option, or this two-tone snake print!

For the Culinary Queen Mom:

ws-cookbook-stand

If your mom loves to be in the kitchen, the possibilities are endless! I love this cookbook holder from Williams Sonoma. It’s a perfect way to display a classic cookbook, but also looks pretty on its own! Another option is this cute cake stand for the mom who loves to bake!

For the Mom On-the-Go:

vb-duffel

Even if your mom doesn’t travel too often, everyone needs a Vera Bradley duffel. They are so great, you can just continue to stuff things inside and it never gets full. If she’s set in the duffel department, try a toiletry bag or a jewelry organizer!

What are you getting your mom for Mother’s Day? Let me know!

That’s all for meow!

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Ten Dollar Treat Yo Self

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Hey Cats!

Happy Tuesday! Treat Yo Self Tuesday, as I like to call it. Yesterday, our internet was down in my office, so I got to work from home. After a busy weekend, I was dying for a little extra time at home, and I got it! I had a lot to do so I was busy until 5, but it was nice to be at home!

Sometimes in life, you just need to treat yo self. Whether it was a bad day at work, a great day at work, you just want to buy something, or just because it’s Tuesday, it’s necessary sometimes. However, if you get in the habit of this, it can get a little expensive. I say this because I know. So, I’ve put together a list of my favorite little treats that won’t blow your budget! Most of them are under $10, and some of them are free!

ten-dollar-treat-yo-self

1. New reading material

I love to pick up a new magazine or book for a weekend treat yo self. Typically it’s a magazine because they’re about $5 tops, but sometimes you can find a great book on sale! My favorite magazines are Southern Living, InStyle, and Harper’s Bazaar. For books, I typically head to Target (because if I just want to buy something, that’s where I’m at).

2. A good workout

In the wise words of my role model slash style icon Elle Woods, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t shoot their husbands. They just don’t”. Well, I don’t have a husband so I don’t have to worry about anything dramatic, but a nice sweat session is a great way to boost your attitude! My new favorite way to workout is this Nike Training Club app. It’s free, and it has a huge library of workouts to choose from! This may take a little convincing to view it as a treat, but it works really well when you’re broke.

3. A petite pampering

Sometimes you want to treat yo actual self. But you can’t justify a pedicure because it’s only Tuesday and you just bought clothes for vacation so that would not be wise. Some of my favorite purchases are pillow mist  ($10), bath bombs from LUSH, ($4-8), 0r  a fun new nail polish color that’s perfect for summer ($8-10)!

4. A tasty treat

Full disclosure, I had to try really hard to not make this list all food. Let’s just cut to the chase, if you’re wanting an easy and inexpensive way to treat yo self, go get Starbucks, ice cream, Taco Cabana nachos, or whatever else you want that’s unhealthy. Because: treat yo self.

5. Window shopping

This one can be tricky, because you may end up spending way more than $10. But sometimes, I just like to make my shopping list of things to keep in mind for an actual shopping trip!

What’s your favorite way to treat yo self without spending too much? Let me know!

That’s all for meow!

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Friday’s Few

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Hey Cats!

Happy Friday- we made it! After a busy week, I’m so ready for the weekend. Tonight and most of tomorrow, I will be volunteering with the Junior League at an event that gives Houston-area high school girls an incredible experience of finding a prom dress and accessories, along with self-esteem classes that empower them to be confident young women, all for free! I’m so excited! Also on Saturday night, my bestie Robyn is staying with me after her career fair, and it will be great to see her! Anyways, it’s been a jam-packed week, so here’s what I’m loving:

  1. Cat Clutch from ASOS

cat clutch

GUYSSSSSS. I need this. I saw it on Pinterest and lost my mind. I mean, can you imagine the conversation starters with this? “Cat’s out of the bag!” “Cat got your tongue?”. I’m sorry, this bag is just the cat’s meow. I’m sorry again. If I keep making cat jokes you may have to kick meowt. DONE I PROMISE. But really, how adorable is this straw clutch? It would be so cute for a night out, or for a trip to the beach! I need it. Right meow, not kitten.

2. Brussels Sprouts Pizza

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It happened. I found someone more obsessed with Brussels Sprouts than I am. This woman put them on a pizza. And it’s genius. I had to try this for myself this past weekend, and it was just the best. The sprouts with the onions and the creamy ricotta…ugh I loved it. Try this Brussels Sprouts and Ricotta Pizza from Recipe Runner if you’re brave enough! You will not regret it.

3. Jacks & JL

JL Jacks

Two of my favorite things combined! Jack Rogers has created a special pair of sandals for the Junior League, with 10% of the proceeds being donated back to the Association of Junior Leagues International to help women continue to make a difference in their communities. How great is that? Thanks Jack! P.S., a pair of Jacks are on my shopping list for this summer. If I don’t get these, I’m thinking about getting them in bone, cork, or Caribbean blue!

4. Taste of Streep

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Who does not love Miranda Priestly Meryl Streep? I stumbled upon this incredible Instagram account while creeping hard. No shame. You should follow it, because it consistently makes my day.

5. Bethenny is Back

bethenny-gif 2I forgot that the new season of RHONY premiered on Wednesday night until I turned my TV on. YAAS. Bethenny is back, and she knows it all.

I hope everyone has a great weekend! That’s all for meow!

 

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Home Decor How-To: Gallery Wall

Hey Cats!

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a good weekend! On Saturday, I volunteered with the Junior League and then cleaned my apartment, which was much needed, and on Sunday, I went to the Mumford and Sons concert with my friends Ashley & Biz. It was great! I’m not so sure I’m ready for this busy week ahead, but it’s here whether I want it to be or not.

As I’ve mentioned before, one of the things I was most excited about when moving into my own apartment was decorating it. I actually had most of it planned out before I even chose my apartment, my living room gallery wall included. Since then, I have added another in my bedroom above my dresser, and I am obsessed.

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This wall in my living room is a combination of literally every single piece of art I had hanging in my house in college, plus one or two more. I actually painted the cat, the bird, and the Gatsby quote myself!

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My newest gallery wall is above my dresser in my bedroom. I’ve had the prints since Christmas, but I was waiting for the perfect addition (the rhino) before hanging everything!

Before I created the gallery above my couch, I was under the impression that it was a difficult process and you basically had to be an interior decorator for it to look halfway decent. However, I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it is! So today, I’m sharing with you my tips on how to make the perfect gallery wall:

  1. There are no rules. Seriously. It’s like abstract art, so you can basically do whatever you want, and as long as nothing is crooked, it will probably look good. So keep that in mind.
  2. A mixture of size and shape can add interest, but a few pieces of similar size and shape can give some balance. On my living room wall, nothing is the same size, but most pieces are a horizontal rectangle. The straight lines draw the eye up and down from one piece to the next. In my bedroom I have some unique shapes, but the four prints of equal size and shape anchor the collage.
  3. Try to have a general color scheme or theme. For my living room wall, I drew inspiration from the two colorful paintings with the cat and the bird. They gave me lots of options, and while nothing “matches”, they don’t just look like a hodge-podge. In my living room, I went with a more concentrated color scheme of pink, gold, white, and gray.
  4. Play around with layouts before getting hammer happy. A simple way to do this is to just lay everything out on the floor! That way you can be sure you like how it looks before it’s on the wall and get the spacing correct. Once it’s how you want it, snap a picture with your phone for reference. I hung my bedroom wall by myself, and I left each item in the layout on the floor and hung them one-by-one so I could have a good idea of the spacing as I hung everything.
  5. Leave room to grow! As you can see on both of my walls, there is room to expand, but it doesn’t look incomplete. You never know when you may find the perfect addition, and you don’t want to have to take it all down and start from scratch.
  6. Have fun with it! I mean seriously, I have a marble rhinoceros head, a painting of a cat, a painting of a bird, and a glitter quote about partying on my wall. But neither one of those things looks too bizarre because they’re surrounded by normal things. Remember, “in the Southern home, there’s room to display all manner of elegance & eccentricity”. So there: do what you want.

If you have a gallery wall of your own, I would love to see it! I’m always looking for inspiration (even though I’m running out of walls).

That’s all for meow!

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A New Direction

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Hey Cats!

With the exception of the rushed Instagram Round-Up I threw up on the blog a couple of weeks ago, it’s been quite a while since we’ve chatted! And to be honest, I have missed this little blog SO MUCH. I’ve been wanting to get back to it for months, but I couldn’t quite bring myself to write one post and then fall off the face of the Internet again. There are a few reasons I’ve been absent:

Time. I have been way too busy the past few months. Between work, Junior League, friends, family, and just being tired, there wasn’t any time to blog. When I was at home, it was only long enough to sleep and maybe do a load of laundry. However, the crazy has died down some, and I’m confident that this blog is something I’m ready to make a priority again.

I was a little discouraged. To be frank, comparing myself to other bloggers got the best of me for a while. I’ve been blogging since 2011 and have yet to “hit it big”. Granted, this blog is more of a hobby for me, but I felt like I was producing top-notch content and no one was noticing. Not to step on any toes, but it’s almost like blogging has become a competition of who has the prettiest pictures, not the best writing, and that really bothered me. I wanted to work with brands and it just wasn’t happening, and it was frustrating. I forgot that I started Sweet Cats! to share my ideas with the world, not to become Instagram famous. And I had to get over that.

I was in a creative rut. My job now takes the largest chunk of my time, and I also write at least one blog post per week, and run multiple social media accounts. So when I get home, I don’t have any words left. Sure, I write about the healthcare industry all day, but I can only string together witty sentences for so long. Also, I felt like I was outgrowing my niche, “Styling the Single Girl Closet on a College Girl Budget”, but I didn’t know what direction I wanted to take the blog. Did I need to launch a complete re-brand? Can I just change the look of my site? Is this even something I want to do anymore? Basically, Sweet Cats! had an existential crisis and I didn’t know how to handle it.

That’s why it took me a while to come back to blogging. I wanted to be at a place where I’m sure that it’s something I have time to make a priority, something I do because I love it, and something that reflects who I am at this point in my life. And I believe that now I can say with confidence that all of those things are true. So here’s what you can expect from the “new” re-directed Sweet Cats!:

A more grown-up feel. I started this blog when I was 18 and had college-girl taste and an annual income of roughly zero dollars. I feel like in the past year or so, my tastes have changed and there are things I’m more willing and able to invest money into. I’m at a point where I draw more inspiration from Southern Living than I do InStyle. I care about my clothes still (duh), but I’m also interested in home decor, a healthy lifestyle, helping others, and succeeding in the professional world. So you’re going to be seeing more of those types of posts from now on.

A more lifestyle-focused approach. My vision for this blog is to become almost an online magazine, something that captures every aspect of life. Not every aspect of my life, because privacy, but life in general. Like I mentioned above, there’s more to my life now than just school and social events. I want to be able to share things that will resonate with girls in my stage of life, and maybe beyond! That’s why I’ve changed the tagline for my blog to “A Modern Southern Belle: Dressing, Eating, and Living Well”.

The same sass, snark, and Sweet Cats! writing style you love. Well, I don’t know if you love it, but I do. One thing that will never change no matter what is the focus on wording. If we’re being honest, it’s never really been about the crafts, or the outfits, or the inspirational quotes, or the lifestyle. For me, it’s always been about telling a story about those things. I love to write, and that will always be the most important part of this blog. It will always be about the words for me. And I hope you will stick around to read them.

I’m so excited to see where this new direction takes me. That’s all for meow!

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DIY- Monogrammed Mortarboard

Hey Cats!

It’s Wednesday! I hope y’all are having a wonderful week, and if not, Friday is in 48 hours, so keep thinking about that. Houston has decided to finally be sunny, which I have been loving after all of these scary floods. Luckily, most of the roads where I live weren’t affected and I was still able to get to work (and Chipotle, thank God), but I know there was a lot of flooding and damage near downtown Houston. But at last the sun is shining, it’s actually worth my time to fix my hair, and it’s finally starting to feel like summer!

As you all know, I recently graduated from college. One thing I had been looking forward to about graduation (for a few years, actually) was decorating the mortarboard. I also knew for quite some time that I wanted to put my monogram on it, because as you all also know, if I can monogram it- I will. On your mortarboard, it’s classic, personal, and even if there are 50 other girls with monogrammed caps, your family can (maybe) still tell which robed figure you are. In the words of my friend Ashley, “either monogram it or leave it blank”. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

However, I personally don’t have the best penmanship (I like to describe my handwriting as comparable to that of an 8th grade boy), so I knew that I wasn’t going to be able to do this myself. Ashley had hers embroidered, which I really, REALLY loved and planned to do for probably a year. But, guess who forgot to order her cap and gown until Spring Break (Sometimes I’m not really sure how I made it through college), and wasn’t able to pick it up until three days before graduation? So embroidery was obviously out of the question, and I was forced to get creative.

While scrolling through my Instagram feed, I caught a glimpse of a car decal on Marley Lilly’s account, and I had an epiphany. Buy the decal and stick it on my hat. Minimal effort, maximum effect. However, I was a little concerned as to whether or not the decal would stick to the fabric on my mortarboard. After all, you only get one hat, and I didn’t want to mess it up. So I emailed support at Marley Lilly, asking whether or not they had ever received feedback on using a car decal on a graduation cap. The girl that responded was very nice, and she even gave me a few tips!

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I chose the 5 Inch Decal in pink glitter, because go big or go home, obviously. I chose to place it in the back corner, because the button was in the way, and luckily, it fit right in the center of the “M”. It was pretty easy to apply, but I did accidentally rip it, as you can see in the left corner of the “L”. But, it wasn’t too noticeable, and I was still really happy with it! It matched my dress, and my family said they could definitely find me in the crowd… but that could have been because I was struggling to keep the stupid thing on my head as I walked in Note: if you’re graduating soon, please bring bobby pins, no matter how big you think your head is. Because though they claim to be one size fits all, they sure are not. I digress. But seriously, if you’re looking for a quick and inexpensive way to add a personalized touch to your big day, a decal is the way to go. Marley Lilly has a variety of sizes, fonts, and colors, so you can coordinate to your dress, show some school spirit one last time, or just pick your favorite color! Whatever you decide, just remember that if you don’t monogram it, just leave it blank.

That’s all for meow!

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