Summer Reading


Reading in the summer is what I look forward to the most. I love to read, but it's very challenging for me to find a good book that's worth reading. I've found that I love reading fiction and particularly romance. Adventure is exciting too, but I tend to fly threw books that include a little bit of romance. I haven't shared any books that I enjoy reading yet here on the blog, so I thought it would be most appropriate because it's summer, which is the perfect time to start plugging through your pile of books!

For 2014, one of my new years resolutions was to read five new books. In school I have to read so much that reading for fun, doesn't even cross my mind! So here are four books that I highly recommend this summer if you're hunting around for a few incredible books.

A Walk to Remember
This book is incredible, and it's definitely one of my all time favorites. If you've seen the movie, than I promise you the book is ten times better. The movie stayed pretty close to the book but of course, there's a few things they always leave out. The book has more Christian views and perspectives. The character's have more morals and values than what the movie portrayed, specifically the main characters. I watched the movie first and then read the book a few months later because of how much I loved the story. But once I read the book the entire story came alive and definitely changed the meaning of it! I can't explain too much of what the books about, but here's a brief description of it. The main character, Landon Carter starts hanging out with the wrong crowd of people and is being influenced in the worst of ways. Because of his rude behavior he's forced to participate in a school play and keep clean up around his school campus. Through drama Landon was able to gain some help practicing his lines by Jamie Sullivan. Throughout the middle of the book a little spark of love begins to appear, but there are many bumps in the road they have to overcome.

Introverts in the Church
This book is nonfiction and is really good. I believe I'm on chapter 3 but I already love this book and I've learned so much already. I picked this book up because lately I've been feeling like the topic of introverts hasn't been positive and therefore I needed to hear the good things about being an introvert and learn how to embrace it. I love the way Adam writes and describes things in this book, and he has great advice and tips. I feel like us introverts have a hard time fitting in at church or figuring out our place of where we belong. We feel uncomfortable when we are forced to speak up in a circle of girls to share our prayer requests, or when we walk in a room with thirty random people we don't know. So instead of trying to interact we remove ourselves completely from the youth or church in general! So this book is such a helpful guide to finding your way in the church especially as introverts.

Gone With the Wind
This book is very thick, but don't let that stop you from reading it! I've just stated this one, and I have a feeling it will take me a while to finish but so far I love it! My friend has given me hope because she said that it only took her two days to finish it, because it was that good. I recently just had a movie day with all my friends and we watched the Gone with the Wind, so now I'm really excited to start powering through it. I'll have to give you all an update once I get through it more.

Love Finds You: Sunset Beach
This book is amazing! I've re-read it many times too. Robin Jones Gunn is my favorite author, & she's signed many books for me in the past! This book is sort of a part of the Sierra Jensen series, but it's the continuing book of her story. This book is so good and I love the relationships between the characters! The way Robin Gunn writes it so beautiful and I love the way she describes each scene and character! Every book I read from her, I literally can't put it down. I'm always hooked right on the first chapter! You'll definitely have to grab up this book, believe me you won't be sorry!

London Fog Latte


London fog is a new drink I just recently discovered. My friends and I have Bible studies every Friday nights at It's A Grind (coffee house) & my friend ordered a London Fog latte and we all fell in love with the unique taste. So instead of paying five dollars every time we wanted one, we learned how to make it at home for less. This drink only requires a few ingredients that most people already have in their pantry. It's super easy to make and you don't need a fancy coffee machine to create this drink!

1 cup of warm water
1 packet of Earl Grey tea
1/2 cup of steamed milk 
2 tsp of vanilla torani 
ground cinnamon

First take the water and heat it up in the microwave for about a minute or two and then let the earl tea steep for 3-5 minutes. Then warm up the milk or half and half either over the stove or microwave (be sure not to boil the milk but warm it). Add that to the cup of tea and pour the vanilla torani and stir it in all 
 together. To top it off you can lightly sprinkle some cinnamon on the top for some extra flavor.     

California Sunshine


One of the perks about living in Southern California is the beautiful beaches and weather! The other day I was able to make a trip down in San Diego for a relaxing day at the beach which was just perfect. I was able to get so much reading done so I can keep pluggin away with my book list! It's nice to have a break from the media world, and just focus on what's around you! Sometimes I get tired of keeping up my Instagram or Facebook feed, or blogging in general. I've noticed that when I don't allow myself to take a few days off from social media, blogging becomes more enjoyable and less like a chore. I never want to make my blog a chore but rather something I look forward to doing!! And beach days are perfect break getaways. 
On a different note, the other day you might have seen on my Instagram and Facebook accounts, that I had a movie day with my friends, which was so much fun! We all decided on Gone with the Wind, which ended up being a great movie! I had seen it once in 8th grade so it's been a good four years since i've watched it, and oh my gosh it's so incredible and so much better than I remember! The ending is horrible, but I love old classic movies like this one so it made up for that! This summer my goal was to get together more with my close friends, because I feel like summer flies by so fast and you never were able to do, what you originally had in mind. I can proudly say this summer that hasn't been the case for me, and I'm so thankful for that! Spending a long day with my girls, is what summer is all about! 

shirt/Target :: shorts/American Eagle :: sunglasses/Urban Outfitters 



Now that it's summer I've had so much free time, I almost don't know what to do with it! Lately with my time I've been enjoying some good books. I love to read, but finding a great book is so difficult for me. So this summer I was determined to explore some book I cannot put down, and I'm so glad I did. I'm currently reading "Introverts in the Church" by Adam S. Mchugh. I enjoy fiction, but It's been nice to have a change to something that's more real and that I can put into practice in my life. Introverts in the Church is basically a book all about the life of an introvert, exactly what it is, and how to embrace it. My personal past conversations with people about the topic "introverts" has lead me to the inclusion that we live in a world that gives introverts a bad rap. It's looked down upon, and unrespected or understood. So in Adam's novel, he's trying to help those who feel frustrated, or even clueless to the idea of what being an introvert is like. So far the book is awesome and I love how he brings it back into the church and how we can become more social or even comfortable in our church family even as introverts! 

Within the next two weeks I'm hoping to create a Youtube account and start making some fun/helpful videos for you guys! Currently my friend and I are hooked on watching Youtube tutorials all day long, and I just think they are so fun to watch and so much more helpful for visual people (like myself ). With that being said, I decided to create one myself, and I've already began making notes on some future video ideas! I'm working on one right now for some Summertime book reading list that I'm just loving! If you have any suggestions for what you want to see on my brand new Youtube Channel then comment below! I'm open to anything, and new ideas. Makeup tutorials, hair style ideas, Q+A videos, different TAGS, or even blogging advice. So let me know in the comments below, and I'll be sure to give it some serious thought because I just love hearing from you guys! 

shirt/T.J. Maxx :: shorts/American Eagle :: denim jacket/Charlotte Russe :: black purse/Urban Outfitters :: peach sandals/Target :: druzy necklace/courtesy of Ohkuol 

A Beautiful Giveaway : Beach Tote


Today I am so excited to be hosting another giveaway! I've been planning this one for a long time, because summer is such a great time to buy cute and cheerful things! So today I'm giving away a beach tote! This tote is from an adorable Etsy shop called Monogram Collection. Her totes are so beautiful, and great for the summer time down at the beach! I have teamed up with some amazing bloggers who I just love, so be sure to go give them a follow!

Meet the Girls:

 Jenna from A Beautiful Heart
 Rachel from Daydream Frenzy
 Mercedes from Forever Fashioned
 Matea from Heart in the Clouds
 Haley from Bliss

All you have to do to enter is follow through the rafflecopter below. One lucky winner will receive this beach tote and be able to order one with your initials (monogram) on the front, along with your choice of color and thread font. This giveaway is only only open to the U.S. because of shipping! Good luck.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Not all Who Wander are Lost


When I took these photos I was still in Hawaii! Hence all the gorgeous green terran. I miss Hawaii so much, and looking back on these photos made me realize how much I loved it there. I love how in Maui every road has some breath taking view and that's perfect for taking outfit photos! I literally could have brought my entire closet with me, and I still would have had leftover locations I could have loved to used! I'm not a nature girl per se, but there's something about  being on a tropical island, It's so peaceful and calming. 

This summer I'm really wanting to enjoy some fun little road trips and new adventures whenever they come my way! I love traveling, and hope to do more of it! I guess you could say this summer I'm wanting to be more adventurous, while expanding my horizons! To try new recipes, visit new places, and spend more nights with friends! Every summer has a story, but I'm determined to make mine a novel! 

With this blazing hot weather lately I've lovin iced teas! I've always been a soda type of girl, but currently my new favorite is iced teas! It keeps me so cool, and it's so refreshing especially while blogging-ha! Starbucks has some great black iced tea, but I've recently discovered a passion fruit iced tea of It's A Grind! It's becoming my to-do drink, especially this summer when it's already it's been around 90 degrees. I've found a new recipe on Pinterest to make peach iced tea, and I'm so excited to try it. Along with making some green tea which is so good for you anyway, so It will be fun try and to see which ones will turn out! Once I give it a go, I'll have to share it here on the blog! I have a feeling 2014 summer will only consist of iced teas. Do you have any favorite type of iced teas? 

black top/America Rag :: shorts/American Eagle :: bag/Roxy :: sunglasses/farmers market in Hawaii :: sandals/Roxy :: anchor necklace/Forever 21 :: photos by Alex

Life Lately


Oh my, summer is here! I've been on the countdown for some time now, so I cannot believe it has finally arrived. It's crazy to think I am no longer a Junior but an actual SENIOR in high school! I am so excited for summer this year and fun new things I'm really wanting to experiment with. Let's just say my summer to-do list is getting longer by the day! Of course, this means more DIY posts here on the blog!

Photos from my week: 1) spent a day with my girly Nicole, for her graduation part. 2) treated myself to a chocolate croissant and cup of coffee, (you might recognize the photo from my coffee talk post). 3) My girls from my Bible study group at Starbucks (so we can stay awake, ha) and yes, we finally got a picture! 4) Over the week I was able to go visit this adorable little ranch with brand new baby horses. It was so sweet, and totally made me miss riding! 5) took a quick snap of these gorgeous daisies! 6) loved this quote and wanted to remember it for this week.


                                                                                                Follow me on Instagram 
Inspired By: Can I say summer? There's something about the warm weather that really makes me feel awake and ready to start my day. I feel more reproductive and full of energy.  I really want to plan some fun/new activities with my friends, go bowling, visit with my family, and of course go see some awesome movies this summer! I want my summer to be easy and relaxed, but with not a minute to waste! 

Thankful For: This school year has been so amazing and fun! I've been able to try so many new things, go to different places, and spend quality time with my friends way more often. My teachers this year have been incredible. I seriously cannot imagine how my life would be if I didn't take classes! It would be lonely, and dull. And of course, without my parents love and support I wouldn't have made it through the school year what-so-ever. Junior year, thank you for being so kind to me! :)

Reading: Currently I've been reading Introverts in the Church by ...... It's a book about the life of introverts and how we need to embrace our social personalities especially in a world that discourages it! I literally just started reading in but I'm already hooked. A few months ago I picked up the book Quiet by Susan Cain, which I rented at the library. By the time got around to reading it, it was time to return it. So I was going to check it out a few days later but forget to go by and pick it up! But I'm so glad I didn't, well not yet at least, because I wouldn't have found this new book. I really wanted a book about Introverts but with a Christian worldview and thoughts and therefore this book was a perfect fit! Of course this summer I'm wanting to read Quiet and finish that book, but right now I'm too hooked on Introverts in the Church. Once I'm done reading it, I'll have to give you an update on what it was all about! And I'm thinking of doing a coffee talk post on introverts?!

Excited About: Going to the beach with my friend Marie! I'm not a beach girl and I hate going in the water but I love walking on the pier or jetty. Plus theres nothing like the salty air that makes your hair beautifully curly -ha! I guess I really only like the beach when going with friends because we can just hang out and do whatever. Plus it makes a difference when I go with my friends who also don't love the beach.

Playing: Okay so if you've heard of Candy Crush, you will understand why I'm a tad addicted! This app is just too fun, and I'm constantly wanting to beat every level! But besides that, I've been a fan of solitaire and backgammon. I know, their super old games everyones plays them, but I love laying on my bed while listening to music, playing these games! It's really relaxing to me and because it's summer I can waste my time on these silly apps! What games/apps have you been loving lately? 

Strawberry Lemonade


It's officially summer!! Perfect time for days at the park or relaxing down at the pool especially when there's lemonade involved! I love lemonade but I never have it, so making this drink was too fun! It's very simple and easy to make. It's great for inviting friends over for a party because it calls for very few ingredients but yet because of how much water needs to be makes about a full pitcher! When I was making this recipe I only intended to make enough for one glass for the photos, but because of how many cups of water I needed to tone the flavor down, well I ended up having an entire pitcher full of lemonade!

Lemonade is one drink that is so refreshing and light! Whenever I actually have lemonade I almost never order strawberry lemonade because I hate having chunks of strawberries inside my drink. Just like I can't stand having pulp in my orange juice. So this recipe was perfect for me because its only the juice of the strawberries! Plus adding in the fruit makes it not only taste better, but I can't get over how adorable it looks with a stripped colored straw, and a clear glass to show off the red tint the strawberries give the lemonade!

1 cup of strawberries, washed and cut in halves.
3 lemons cut in quarters
4 cups of water
1 1/2 cups of sugar, or you can use honey

Blend the strawberries, lemon, water, and sugar until it becomes slushy. Then take the strawberry lemon mix and strain it while adding an additional 2 cups of water while pouring. Taste and add more sugar/honey if needed. Lastly pour, and serve over cold ice.

all photos by: Into the Woods

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