Thursday, April 3, 2014

Being a Wise Shopper

Today I am blogging about clothes! I do love all my clothes, but it wasn’t until today that I realized how much money we spend on our clothes! I think my style is, modest but trendy. I like to dress cute and wear trendy things, but everything is covered at all times. Sometimes my friends call me a “Mom” because sometimes my outfits are more conservative than trendy! I do not consider myself a fashionista, but I am pretty good at making decisions when it comes to purchasing clothes. So I put a picture of my outfit of the day, and some tips about how to be a wise shopper!
 ||Cream Blouse: $9.95 at H&M||

||White Camisole: $4 at H&M||

||Navy Blue Cardigan: $49.50 from Ann Taylor LOFT||

||Vigoss Boyfriend Jeans: $58 from Nordstrom||

||Pale Pink Flats:$20 from Target||

||Headband: $10 from Nordstrom||

||Calvin Klein Bra: $16 from Nordstrom Rack||

Go ahead and judge me on how much money I spend on a cardigan, or even a pair of jeans. Some things I did get off clearance and some I pay with a gift card. Needless to say I think your outfit can influence the way you feel about yourself, I believe it can help you have a better day. But have you ever put this much thought into how much you spend on a single outfit? Before you know it you are at triple digits!

 I define basics as the basic needs you have for an outfit (i.e. camisoles, cardigans, plain t-shirts, plain long sleeved shirts etc.) This is an area that you can save a lot of money! I like to go to H&M when I shop for my basics, because you can find some really good deals, and they have great sales.  A plain white t-shirt from H&M looks the same as a plain white t-shirt from Nordstrom, be wise!!
All items from Ann Taylor LOFT

I think it is necessary to invest in a good pair of jeans. I have a few pair of Lucky Brand Jeans, a pair of Hudson Jeans, and these Vigoss jeans shown above. You wear you jeans all the time, so why not splurge? However, make sure you love them if you buy them. If you are worried about your jeans fading during the washing process, make sure to air dry them! It doesn’t take as long as you think, and it really helps preserve your denim, the dryer is NOT your friend.

Jeans (Lucky Brand), Blouse (Foreign Exchange), Cardigan (H&M), Shoes (Ann Taylor LOFT).
For blouses, it's all about the sale you can find. I have a lot of blouses from Nordstrom Rack, because they have good deals. It is all about the quality!! H&M tends to have cute tops but they are often poor quality. Before you shop, make the decision on whether you are choosing something that is high quality and more expensive, or low quality and cheaper.

This is such a broad topic, because it really depends on the shoes. I believe that you should invest in good running shoes and boots, however, I think that a there is nothing wrong with a cheap pair of ballet flats.

Boots (Target), Pants (unknown), Oversized Cardigan (Marshalls), Blouse (Nordstrom Rack)

I love to shop! Buying cute articles of clothing makes me feel better about myself. Putting my love for shopping aside, it is very important to know the difference between what you need, and what you want. I want a Louis Vuitton purse, but I am not going to buy one. I need a new pair of running shoes, so I will invest in a good pair. If I decide that I want a new pair of skinny jeans, I keep the idea in my head in a few weeks before I purchase them, so I know my desire is authentic. If you are shopping and you find a cute shirt that you don’t NEED, notice it, continue shopping, leave the store, and if you are still thinking about it before you leave, buy it! If you know you are not in the position to not spend extra money, AVOID THE MALL! When you go to the mall to shop, dress in you favorite outfit, because you are less likely to spend your money. If you don’t feel good about the outfit you have on while shopping, you are more likely to spend money in order to make up for your current outfit. Decide what areas you want to save money on, and the areas where you are willing to spend money!

Don’t focus on what other people like, focus on what YOUR style is. Take a moment and think of what you love about your style. I love the fact that I wear headbands. I like to think that trendy headbands complete my outfit. So find your signature, and flaunt it. You are beautiful and unique in how you present yourself, so don’t get hung up in what other people are wearing.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


          Out of all the things that keep me motivated in life, encouragement from friends and family is one of the front-runners. I have always known this, but it wasn’t until I listened to Ray Johnston’s sermon when he spoke at Fellowship Monrovia that I gained a better understanding of how important staying encouraged is. According to Pastor Ray Johnston from Bayside Church in Granite Bay, California, encouragement is the most important thing when it comes to being a follower of Jesus. He also talks about how pastors around the world also need to stay encouraged because they are the ones keeping us encouraged. In my opinion, staying encouraged is also the most important thing in life in general. Whether it’s a small phrase or an inspirational speech, encouragement can inspire us to do anything. Also, one of my friends Chloe Conrad emailed me a few weeks ago encouraging me to blog about this topic. So thank you to Ray Johnston and Chloe Conrad, for making this post possible!

|| Click here for Pastor Ray Johnston’s sermon on Encouragement ||

          I have been really annoyed with my twitter account lately because there are so many things that are providing negative encouragement for me. Some recent tweets that I have encountered are “Lol, are my grades April fools too or?” and “I guess I am in shape because circle is a shape.” I know the discouraging tweets we read are hilarious, but they are subconsciously lowering our expectations for ourselves, whether we are talking about self-image or school. Don’t get me wrong, it is possible for social media networks to be a place of encouragement, but the expectations that our society promotes are just tearing us down. Although, it is possible to encourage people via your social media account, it is rare that people actually use their twitter to do so. When I am working on an essay that I procrastinating on, I need someone to encourage me throughout the process instead of logging onto twitter and being drowned in negative energy. It is possible to seek encouragement in our social media accounts! There is nothing wrong with deleting people on your social media accounts that bring you down. Seek accounts that offer daily encouragement.

           We may not realize it, but as humans we feed off encouragement. It is what gets us through our day. Life is hard as it is and a little bit of encouragement can go a long way. In my life, I try to do my best to encourage people when they are in need of it. Whether it is sending a text to a friend that is awaiting test results or sending cards to my friends away at school during their finals weeks, I have made encouragement a priority because I have realized its importance. On the other hand, I am the type of person that needs constant encouragement in my life.


One important thing you need to remember when it comes to seeking encouragement is distinguishing the difference between being guilty and being encouraged. I remember a very specific time when I was struggling with being a “luke-warm”, Christian. Francis Chan’s highly recommended book, Crazy Love, brought these feelings upon me. I texted my youth pastor, Keegan Lenker and told him about the guilt I was feeling about this subject matter. He reassured me that guilt does not come from God. God does not call us to feel guilty about our sins; he calls us to feel encouraged about making improvements. So instead of feeling guilty about something, be encouraged, it can change your outlook and attitude about your life and relationship with God.  

The great thing about the lack of encouragement in our world is that it is something that can be fixed.  I want to inspire people who are reading this to encourage five people this week. For all my avid encouragers, encourage a little more than you do already. And for those of you, who often forget to encourage people, step out of your comfort zone and shoot someone a text or even write a little letter (LETTERS ROCK). Not only will you inspire your friend to complete a task or have a better day, but it will help you too. Doing a good deed, like encouraging someone, can put you in a better mood.

 Have a topic you want me to blog about? Email me at and I will review your ideas!