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Friday, September 22, 2023

Fall Fashion:Horse Race Edition

Fall Fashion: Preparing For A Day At The Races

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As the seasons start to change, many of us are wondering what to wear. This isn't your everyday fashion post. This is a special occasion kind of fashion-horse races.

While many people think of horse racing as an event solely for the Spring, the Fall racing program is immensely popular too. From Albuquerque to Woodbine, the October schedule in the U.S. and Canada is simply incredible. If you’re planning a day at the races over the coming weeks, though, ensuring that you look the part is vital.

In truth, the process isn’t vastly different from planning a day at the races in Spring or Summer. Focus on the simple tips I’ve provided below for guidance and you won’t go far wrong.

Find The Perfect Outfit

A day out at the races may be one of your final opportunities to wear a dress to an outdoor event this year as it will soon be time to wrap up. Beautiful race day dresses will undoubtedly enhance your experience of being around the paddocks. After all, looking good naturally makes you feel good regardless of whether it’s a work outing or a day with friends.

To perfect the outfit, though, you will probably want a lightweight jacket. Meanwhile, carrying an umbrella is advised if the weather forecast suggests rain.

Choose The Right Hat

After an incredible summer, I can’t wait to continue the fun over the coming weeks. However, the Halloween and Thanksgiving season is one when I often feel cold. Thankfully, eye-catching hats like fascinators play a big part in race day fashion for women. Aside from the visual benefits, it’s one of the best ways to prevent body heat loss.

Hats should be fun but will also need to coordinate with your race day dress and footwear. So, you should always prioritize those items first.

Perfect Your Hair & Makeup

When dressing to impress for a day at the races, it’s equally important to consider your hair and makeup choices. The windy weather could play havoc with your hair if you’re not careful. These updos for fall are ideal, not least because you can find one that pairs well with hats. Likewise, it’ll be easy to fix them should the wind make them come loose.

As for makeup choices, bitten-berry lips and autumnal-colored mascara can work exceptionally well. However, the key is to find what matches your natural tones.

Consider Your Body Language

Looking your best during a day at the races is as much about the way people perceive you as the way you view yourself. With this in mind, carrying yourself with a confident posture can make a world of difference. Jewelry, simple but bold nails, and a winning smile will do just the trick. If you have bought new footwear, you should wear them in before the big day.

Even if you’re not overly confident, you can fake it until you make it. Crucially, many aspects of your race day attire can subsequently be used for other events over the coming weeks. 

The Final Warning

Lastly, it’s advised that you set a budget for the day. After all, nothing will ruin your look quite like frowning due to losing a small fortune.

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Barriers to Fitness

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Exercise and fitness is something that is often on my mind. I am constantly think about my goals, when and where I am going to workout and what kinds of workouts I want to do. The most recent posts have been focused on tips and tricks to success. It is also helpful to consider the barriers to work to overcome those.

If you want to get fit and enjoy a healthier lifestyle, you need to stay motivated. Motivation gives you the mental urge to keep working out and eating healthily. When this starts to stray, you find everything more challenging. You struggle to get up in the mornings, and you find excuses stopping you from exercising - it leads to a negative spiral. 

The question you’re probably asking yourself is: why aren’t I motivated?

In many ways, you want to get fit. You understand the benefits of being physically fit, yet you lack the motivation. More often than not, it’s due to one (or more) of these four things: 

You perceive exercise as hard

Having an unhealthy relationship with exercise will lead to a lack of motivation. If you perceive it as a hard task, you won’t want to do it. Who gets motivated to do hard things? Nobody I know, that’s for sure! 

The key lies in making exercise easy. You want to stop looking at it as a difficult thing and begin viewing it as part of your daily routine. A simple way to do this is by exercising at home. It removes the barrier of trying to go to a gym and finding ways to fit fitness into your daily schedule. 

Another (perhaps even better) idea is to pick things you enjoy doing. Are there any exercises or forms of exercise that you enjoy? If you’re an avid walker, make this your main form of exercise and start doing it daily. Don’t force yourself to lift weights or do complicated fitness routines from the very beginning. Start by doing things you like doing and gradually progress from there. You’ll find it way more motivating. 

You’re setting unrealistic goals in your head

Secondly, a lack of motivation comes from not seeing results. You’ve been working hard for a few weeks yet aren’t seeing the progress you hoped for. 

A lot of the time, this is because you’ve set unrealistic health goals. Understand the changes you can realistically expect in certain timeframes. You won’t see huge body changes in a week or two - it takes time. 

Stop setting extreme goals and start setting smaller ones. Making your goals more realistic means you feel more motivated as you’re constantly hitting targets. A simple place to start is with your weekly exercise time. Maybe you start out exercising for 2 hours a week. Set a goal of boosting this to 3 hours a week by the end of the month. It’s a simple goal, but you will easily achieve it so the motivation remains. 

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Your mental health is getting in the way

You have to come to terms with the fact that your mental health can get in the way of fitness motivation. Issues like depression or anxiety block you from reaching your true potential. You want to exercise, but your mind has intrusive thoughts telling you not to. You’re looking in the mirror hating what you see, making you lie in bed under the covers rather than working out. 

Gym anxiety is a real thing too - you get so anxious at the thought of going to the gym, so you stay at home and avoid it. It’s perfectly normal to experience gym anxiety or depression, but you shouldn’t ignore the issues and let them demotivate you. 

Tackle your mental health problems head-on. If you’re severely depressed, it’s a good idea to get professional help from a depression rehab center. Hopefully, you can tackle the problems before it gets to this. Find a therapist, open up about your mental health, and get things off your chest. If you have anxiety about working out, think about doing things that don’t cause anxiety. Don’t go to a gym - or plan to go when it’s quieter and there are fewer people. 

Addressing your mental health can help you remove this barrier and feel more motivated to work out regularly! 

You’re making too many extreme changes at once

We’re all guilty of getting excited about a fitness journey and making extreme changes right away. We immediately switch to a different diet or lifestyle, and then instantly regret it. 

Fitness needs to be sustainable. You will not sustain motivation by making drastic and extreme changes right away. Pace yourself; alter small parts of your life and gradually change the way you live. For example, instead of wiping out all the treats from your diet and sticking to a very strict eating routine, make some subtle changes. Alter your portion size, cut certain things out first, and gradually remove others. This makes it far easier to maintain motivation because everything isn’t as extreme. 

Finding your fitness motivation is crucial if you want to see long-term improvements. Barriers can get in our way, but you’re in charge of breaking them down and driving the fitness train full steam ahead. 

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Joining a Gym

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I have been a gym girl for years and years. When all the gyms shutdown in 2020, I was forced to workout at home I built up my home gym and over time I got really used to working out at home. I appreciate rolling out of bed and walking to the next room over for my workout. I still workout a few days a week at home, but there is just something about a gym that I just can't get at home. Earlier this year I decided it was time to go back to the gym. It took some time, but I finally found the right gym for me right now. It can be tricky to find the best spot, but it is definitely worth it.

Staying active is vital for a myriad of reasons. It keeps you physically healthy, reducing the chances of a range of health problems. Alongside this, there’s a heavy link between exercise and your mental health. In simple terms, regular exercise will improve your mental well-being and can reduce feelings of depression and anxiety. 

As such, it’s useful to remain as active as possible. One of the top ways to do this is by joining a local gym. Gyms are full of things you can use to exercise however you want, as many times a week as you want. The only caveat is that gym memberships cost money. So, you want to ensure that you join a fantastic gym. This will encourage you to go regularly, which improves your health! 

With that in mind, what should you look for when joining a local gym?

A good range of modern equipment

You need a fully-equipped gym with a wide range of modern equipment. Diversity is key as it enables you to exercise in different ways. You want a gym with a good variety of cardio equipment, plus plenty of resistance machines. At the same time, the equipment needs to be modern. Places like Fitness 19 only use the latest machines because they’re built better and can provide more efficient workouts for people. 

Bad gyms will either have a lack of equipment or really old stuff for you to use. In both cases, it’s harder for you to get effective workouts in and you just wander around aimlessly before leaving! 

Regular classes

The best gyms will host regular fitness classes for people of all ages and abilities. They may offer some of the following: 

  • Cycling 

  • Circuits

  • Yoga

  • Pilates

  • Beginner’s lifting 

The list can go on and on - the longer it is, the better the gym will be. Classes are important for a couple of reasons: 

  1. They help you learn new exercises and get taught how to do things with a professional trainer/instructor

  2. They bring a group element to things, increasing the sense of camaraderie and adding to your motivation

If you’re new to gym settings, classes are the best way to get involved and ease yourself into things. Pick a gym that offers a great range of classes - ideally, it should include them for free as part of your membership. 

The right atmosphere

Some gyms are completely different from others in terms of atmosphere. You’ve got really noisy gyms full of massive men screaming and throwing weights around. There are CrossFit gyms where people train a specific way, and you have women-only gyms too. 

These three examples show how different the atmosphere can be, and this plays a role in how comfortable you feel. Look for a gym with the type of crowd you’d like to be in. Commercial gyms tend to be good for everyone - and if you go at the right time you’ll find a crowd that suits you the best. Alternatively, look for gyms aimed at specific people - like women-only gyms - if you’d prefer an environment that’s catered to your needs. 

Keep these three things in your head when searching for a gym to join and you will find one that’s perfect for your fitness goals. Now, you’re ready to be active and enjoy the benefits fitness brings to your life. 

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*collaborative post

Friday, September 8, 2023

Summer Recap

Summer 2023 has been good to me. At the beginning of the summer I didn't have a lot planned. I thought it would be a more lowkey summer. All of a sudden that changed, and it was a little more packed full of fun. The month of June was a bit cold and rainy so it didn't even really feel like summer. I was out of town 3 times in July. It was really fun and a little exhausting.

I found a great last minute plane ticket to Arizona for a few days during my summer break. It was crazy hot, but we pretty much spent the whole time in the pool. Walking outside felt a little bit like I might catch on fire. It was fun to get out of town for a few days, and it was a nice break.

I was back in town for a couple of weeks before going to Yellowstone and Grand Tetons with Stacha, Ale, Brooke, and Diana. After searching for an affordable hotel or Air BnB, we ended up deciding to stay in a covered wagon. It proved to be quite the adventure. It was for sure more rustic than I was expecting, but it was still a lot of fun. We saw so many beautiful things on our trip. We saw the Barbie movie on our way home, and we were all so ready to get home to our clean showers and our own beds.

The weekend after Wyoming was the annual bookclub Bear Lake trip. We went in July this year, and we had the best beach weather. We had a little smaller crowd this year so we missed those that couldn't come. We had a great time and another year of fun memories.
After being in town for a few weeks, I took one final summer trip to California. I met up with a group of OG girls for a southern California trip. Everyone went to Disneyland for one day while I stayed back at the pool. We spent another day at the beach and another day shopping. I haven't spend a lot of time in California (other than visiting Chelsea and her fam) so it was fun to play tourist for the weekend.
Summer is definitely winding down. I am a bit sad to say goodbye to summer but I am looking forward to fall and all that has to offer.

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It's Almost Fall

Image by Clem Onojeghuo on Pexels

As temperatures adjust and leaves take on their vibrant autumn shades, many find renewed joy and relaxation during this season. As much as I love summer, it is always fun when the temperature drops a little and the leaves start to turn. Autumn offers many activities which not only entertain but can enrich one's life as well. 

Here are just a few activities which might keep you occupied this autumn season.

1. Leaf Peeping and Nature Walks

Fall brings with it breathtaking displays of leaf color changes; why not join one of many leaf-peeping tours, or simply stroll in your local park and witness this vibrant spectrum of reds, oranges and golds that nature provides us?

For optimal photography results, capture colorful scenes using either your phone camera or DSLR. In your nature journaling efforts, document different species as their leaves change season to season in an ongoing document of plant species and trees in nature journals. My DSLR has been packed away for several years. After letting a friend borrow it for a couple of months this summer, I am committed to getting it back out. Autumn is the perfectly beautiful time for that.

2. Harvest Festivals and Apple Picking

Across many communities this fall season is harvest festival time, featuring locally produced fruits, crafts and seasonal delicacies as well as apple picking activities - an increasingly popular autumn activity! Apples are my favorite and I need to see if there is a local spot for apple picking.

For maximum pleasure during apple picking adventures, explore different recipes using apples such as pie and cider! Plus use what you collect for crafts like creating apple print artworks!

3. Pumpkin Patch Visits 

Pumpkin patches provide an enjoyable outing for families and individuals of all ages alike, offering opportunities for picking pumpkins while taking part in activities like hayrides and corn mazes.

Arrange with family or friends to host a pumpkin carving party and carve pumpkins together! On Cooking Day, gather up those fresh pumpkins you found and use them as ingredients in soup or bread recipes!

4. Hiking and Camping

Autumn provides ideal outdoor adventure conditions: cooler temps and less crowds make this season ideal for hiking and camping trips to experience its splendor. Plan one now to make the most out of autumn's beauty!

For an enjoyable hiking or camping adventure, invest in high quality gear from camping stores such as REI or Back Country Shopper to make the journey more comfortable while adhering to safety precautions while out. Don't leave home unannounced: always comply with regulations by informing someone prior to embarking upon any treks or adventure trips. 

5. Cozy Indoor Activities

Add warmth and cozy ambience to the season by joining activities designed to mark this festive period!

For an enjoyable autumn experience, enjoy reading while sipping hot cocoa or tea; crafts include creating autumn wreaths or candle holders; baking sweet treats using a new pumpkin cheesecake recipe can bring autumn into your home along with spiced cookies and cakes! 

6. Community Volunteerism

Autumn offers you an ideal chance to give back by volunteering. Take full advantage!

Donate to food banks or community kitchens near you by attending local food bank drives and community kitchen cleanup days. Join community cleanup drives in order to preserve parks and recreational areas nearby.


Autumn offers many activities and pursuits to keep us busy and active, from outdoor adventures to cozy indoor plans - everyone will find something enjoyable this autumn season! 

Make sure you set aside enough time for relaxation as well, taking pleasure from its simple joys such as crisp air and crunchy leaves underfoot; but make sure also take some personal time for just yourself, enjoying each aspect that come your way during this glorious time of year. Call me if you are doing a fun fall activity.

Enjoy Autumn!

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*this post is in collaboration 

Staying Safe on the Internet

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We basically do everything on the internet these days. Protecting your privacy on the Internet is so important, there are a lot of nosy people out there who are always looking for ways to pry into your business and get information about you. This information is usually used for identity theft and can see your life being turned upside down. 

However, it's very hard to keep your privacy on the internet when everywhere you turn it seems like someone wants to install a cookie to monitor your activities. Even big-name websites collect information from you when you browse. 

So how exactly should you go about securing your privacy on the internet? Here are some tips that will help.

Strong Passwords

It has probably been said a million times already but it is worth repeating. You need strong passwords, they are still a necessity all over the internet. 

They are your first line of defense against internet criminals who seek to steal identity and extract from you. 

Make sure that when they go mining for your information they come up empty-handed. Create passwords with lots of different characters and capital letters to get them off track.

Two Factor Authentication

Two-factor identification is a must for just about everything you do on the internet. From your bank account to your social media accounts, you have to protect your identity by making sure that you turn on two-factor authentication for everything.

It is an extra layer of protection that you need beyond the password. Thieves may be able to guess your password but they can't get past your two-factor authentication process if they don't have your device with them to get a code.

Don't Give Away Information

Be vigilant about the information that you give out on the internet. For example, be wary of any email that seems to come from your financial institutions and asks for personal information. 

Nine times out of ten this is just a scam with criminals trying to get you to click on links to go to phishing sites that closely mirror the official site of banks. They will try to get you to enter your passwords and other confidential information.

Always keep your information close to your chest and never part with it no matter how tempting it may be. In addition to making sure that you are keeping your information, see if you also need to find out what kind of information organizations such as Google have on you. 

 You can find out how to see what Google knows about you and then choose to remove some of the information if you find it uncomfortable.

Get Protected

Keeping yourself and your family safe while you're on the internet should always be a primary concern. It's not too difficult to keep yourself safe, you just have to make sure that you are aware of the things that criminals try to do to get ahold of your information. 

Your personal information is your identity so you must guard it with your life. If someone tries to steal it, you can find it difficult to redeem yourself and get your life back. So, always make sure that you are being vigilant.

*this post is in collaboration 

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