Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Morocco [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you!  Amber does a ton of traveling and today she is sharing a trip to Morocco and the warrior queen women there! 

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Before arriving in Morocco as a Peace Corps volunteer, I was afraid. Of course of the normal things- where was I going to live, how was I going to learn the language, what would I have to live without, would I be able to do it... but I was also very worried about making friends. I wasn't sure I was going to be able to since it is highly discouraged by the nuances of society for women to 'hang out' in the public sphere. I was overwhelmed, how was I supposed to meet women-folk to become friends with?

After arriving in our final site of Larache in May of 2012, I quickly realized that women create community wherever they go. In my English classes, which were made up of mostly women, I could see camaraderie develop instantly between them. Similarly as I met more women and became more involved with them, the feeling of community, when walking into a room full of women, was so thick it was tangible. I joined a women's workout class and was instantly welcomed, this was the same when I offered to teach yoga at a women's only gym, when I taught a women-only English class and when I started to attend an illiteracy class for only women. The formerly quiet, subdued women I saw on the street were lively, giddy and sometimes inappropriate around their fellow females. The instant I entered one of those situations, it gave me an 'at-home' welcome feeling, I was one of them and nothing would change that.

A women's only event

About a year into my Peace Corps service, these spaces were my sanctuary and these women, my lifelines. It was tough because I didn't always understand what was going on, but they created spaces where I felt safe and wanted. I began to attend meetings of a local women's association where they work to do plan programs specifically for women. These activists were quiet and respectful,but also got things done. I helped them plan two International Women's Days, a carnival day for Children and a Wedding Festival event. Likewise, they helped me to plan a Girl's Empowerment Camp.  The poise and strength that I saw these women portray in the face of adversity is astonishing. They always have to tiptoe a fine line between their traditional way of life and being involved and fulfilling their civic duty. This line is a treacherous boundary and these women border it with grace. It is their societal duty to take care of their families, oftentimes multi-generational. Which translates to making meals that often take 2-3 hours to make or walking their children to and from school, disciplining, cleaning, doing laundry by hand... all while attempting to make their mark on the world.

 Some friends and I at an events
International Women's Day 2013
There is a lot of bad press in Western media which infers that women have no power or control of their lives in the Middle East / North Africa. While in some perspectives this may be considered true. However, it is cruel to judge another culture. In my experience, being a Western women, it can be difficult to find a group of women that are truly wonderful and will be welcoming just because I am a women. I am not saying there aren't cliques in Morocco because there are, but the type of community that is instantaneously developed is unlike any other experience I have ever had. These women are not in direct competition with each other like some Western women are... whether it be to 'win' men or their attention, whether it be in a workplace setting etc. etc. These previously mentioned actions can be considered oppressive because of the competition to receive reactions, usually from men.  Obviously, my experience lies only with Morocco. There are different ways to be 'free' and 'strong' and to 'empower' other women. There are also different ways to be beautiful, stylish and fashionable. There are different ways to be women. I realize now that my smallest worry should have been about friends and a female community, my experience has been beyond wonderful and is something I will carry with me wherever I go.



Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Living Away From Home [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you! Like Rubi, I spent my first year of college away from home. These tips would have been super helpful.
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Hello everyone! My name is Rubi and I write over at When Life Gives You Rubi. Since I am the definition of a confused twenty something my blog reflects my life, featuring posts on how to spend a Friday night alone, dating advice, an occasional rant and general content that will make any twenty something feel better about not knowing what they plan to do with the rest of their life.

With my recent move from California to Washington DC my blog has sadly been put on the backburner, but thankfully Raewyn was kind enough to let me guest post on her blog on a topic I can definitely relate to, feeling homesick while attending university.

I went to college four hundred miles away from home, a minimum eight hour drive, meaning I never went home on weekends and only on the occasional major holiday. As time went by I got more and more used to the idea that I just wasn’t going to spend Christmas or Thanksgiving with my mom, but dealing with being far from everything you’ve ever known isn’t as easy for everyone.

As a soon to be college grad, I’ve compiled some advice that helped me deal with spending holidays away from home, never having the pleasure of eating a home cooked meal on a bad day and having to create entire new friendships.

Join an Org ASAP
I wouldn’t have made all the amazing friends I’m graduating with today had I not gotten out of my comfort zone (aka my freshman dorm hall) and attended countless club meetings until I found the right one. Going to a university as large as mine meant it was difficult to make friends in class. Meeting people at org meetings meant there was already one interest we shared and the org usually set up socials to have members get to know one another better.

To the left are two of my closest friends, both of whom I would have never met had I not joined my org.

Bring Photos
Nothing is worse than coming home after a long day of classes to white concrete walls. Skip buying the traditional poster and instead print out some photos to remind you of home. They don’t have to be photos of friends or family either. Take a quick picture of the beach, you at your favorite park, anywhere that will remind you of home.

Teach Your Mom/Dad to Skype
I didn’t start Skyping with my mom until I left for Europe, but it’s definitely what kept her sane while I backpacked all by myself. Skype is a free way to stay in touch with those back home, whether they be siblings, parents or friends who go to a different school.

Constantly checking in with my mom was the only way to keep her sane while I backpacked. Here I am in Rome about to toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain...


Utilize Social Media
With social media being such a big part of our lives nowadays, it’s basically impossible to lose touch with anyone. Create a Facebook group with your close friends from back home, create a hashtag to share only with your friends so you can all keep up with one another’s lives and schedule Google Hangouts to fill one another in. Your first few months away from home will also show you who you will actually stay in touch with, and once you figure that out, go from there.

Plan Something
If you aren’t going home for a major holiday like Thanksgiving or Christmas, skip staying home alone and plan something with other people who are staying in the area for the holiday too! Last Thanksgiving I cooked dinner for 20 strangers who didn’t have the money or a home to visit for the holiday, and it was definitely one of the best Thanksgivings I have ever had.

The Color Run and other races like it are a great way to bond with old and new friends. Plus the photos always come out amazing!


Disconnect at Home
When you do visit, unplug yourself from everything so you can fully enjoy your time there. A few days without Facebook or Twitter won't kill you, plus you’ll have way more time to focus on making plans with friends and catching up with you mom. It can be tempting to watch Netflix nonstop during winter break, but take advantage of your time home and do something you couldn’t do while at your university.

If you have any more suggestions I’d love to hear them! While I’m not as far as I was when I was travelling Europe, I still am on the complete opposite side of the country for the time being. The main way I dealt with homesickness was creating a new family of friends while in college and taking full advantage of the time when I was home. It gets easier with time until the point where your new city begins to feel more like home.


Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Monday, April 28, 2014

Dos And Don'ts of Wedding Planning [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you! 
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Hello ladies!

My name is Pinky and I my home on the Internet is *here*
It's sparkly and pink and just the perfect place for me :)!

I'm so excited to be guest posting for Raewyn, 
while she's busy getting herself hitched!

CONGRATS LADY!

My wedding was on September 7, 2013 and it was the
most perfect day ever. 


I have to be honest though, wedding planning wasn't my favorite thing
in the entire world, like many brides say it is. 

I enjoyed the process, but was glad when it was over. 

Even though I'm by no means a planner, I thought I would share
my DO's and DON'Ts of wedding planning.

I hope you enjoy!

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DO... take time to enjoy your engagement.
Whether you choose to have a LONG engagement or a short engagement take at least a week or two to BE IN the JUST engaged bubble. It should be one of the happiest times of your life, so wallow in the happy, joy and mushiness. Once planning gets started, stress happens, so splurge on going out to dinners, having extra cuddle time and staying up late together. The magic of your love will never fade, but the magic that is the engaged bubble will, so enjoy it as much as possible.
Siiiiiiiiiiiigh, what a great moment!

DO... remember that a wedding is JUST a DAY, but a marriage is a lifetime.
YES, a wedding is important and a fun and special day. BUT, it's just a day. Marriage is a lifetime commitment and something that will last forever. Stressing about colors, dresses, gifts and details REALLY isn't worth it for just one day. Definitely take the time to make it wonderful and your own, but also concentrate on WHY you are having the wedding day too.

DON'T... let people steal your sunshine.
This is YOUR wedding, don't let anyone take the fun out of planning it.You can't control other people's attitudes, opinions or actions so don't try. You will just make yourself miserable. People won't be able to come to your wedding and they might have some opinions to share regarding things you want to have, but don't let that steal your sunshine. Sometimes compromises will have to be made, but remember it's your wedding and stick to your guns when it's something important.

DO... make your wedding unique/special to you and your fiance.
It doesn't have to be expensive or anything grand, but have something that makes you two as a couple unique on the day. Whether it's programs, gifts, cake, your dress or anything else, just have something SPECIAL and unique to you both. It will make the day truly yours and give your guests something fun to remember as well.

DON'T... be fooled by Pinterest.
Sure, Pinterest is a great place to go for ideas and pretty pictures. But, it's also very easy to hide the costs and work and make you think everything is cheap&easy. That beautiful boquet that looks whimsy, yeah probably $200 to recreate. All the shabby chic decor that looks DIY friendly, yeah probably done by a professional to LOOK that way. DON'T stress yourself out perusing Pinterest too often. I only REALLY used Pinterest to get wedding dress ideas, to find my bridesmaid dresses and for hair and makeup. Everything else was just pretty pictures and mindless entertainment. 
[DON'TDOIT!JUSTDON'T]
DO... other things besides JUST wedding stuff while planning.
Remember to date your fiance and enjoy each other. Wedding planning will take up the bulk of your time for sure, but don't forget to still date each other and enjoy each other. Make plans to be together for dinner or to go out for ice cream or just go for a walk together. You are going to be with each other the rest of your life, so make sure you keep the joy and fun alive :)

DON'T... wait too long to order your invitations. TRUST ME
Yeah, just don't wait too long, it will cause way too much stress. 

DO... delegate/ask for help.
You don't have to be superwoman girlfriend, let others help you. Unless you have horrible friends and family, this is the one time in your life where everyone is asking to help you out, so let them. Even if it's just making phone calls or if it's something as major as being in charge of setting up, delegate to people you trust so you don't go crazy.

DON'T... sweat the small stuff.
STUFF happens and there is nothing you can do about it.Things will go wrong, you'll missplan, things won't arrive on time and you can either pitch a fit and get upset [which I've done] or build a bridge and get over it [which I've also done]. As mentioned before, the wedding is just a day, so don't let minor things keep you from enjoying everything about the wedding and the fact you're getting married.
[and who wants to walk funny?]
DO... workout.
You'll need the stress relief, the endorphins and will feel better about your body on your special day. Make a plan and stick to it. Maybe you have to workout in the mornings, maybe late at night and maybe only for thirty minutes, just make sure you get some sweating time [that kind of sweating time will work too ;)] Looking back I could have worked out harder earlier on, but I think I was where I wanted to be come my wedding day. My gym sweat sessions really helped keep me from going coocoo!

DO...take a step back and remember you're getting married to the love of your life.
You're getting married, that's what matters! You will be starting a life together as man and wife and that is so exciting. All that matters is walking down the aisle after the ceremony as ONE COUPLE! If the rings are forgotten, if the limo doesn't show up, if it rains and your dress gets ruined or anything else happens that wasn't planned.....IT'S OKAY! You will still be married and starting your new life together. ENJOY the moment and the fun. WOOOHOOO!!!!!!!

Thanks for reading and thanks Raewyn for letting me post for you!

Have a fabulous day ladies :)!


Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Single Lady Perks [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you! Meet one of my real life blogging friends! I just love Erica to death and can't wait to see her again when I get back in May! 

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Hello everyone!  I am Erica from Erica Jacquline my place to share all the silly things that happen in my life that make me laugh and hope that they make you laugh too.

I was so excited that Raewyn asked me to guest post today.  She is not only a wonderful blogger but someone from blogging that I can actually call my real life friend too. I couldn't be more excited for Rae to get hitched and now will permanently have a man do really important things to make her life better.

I recently was at a gala for my job, I teach juniors and seniors English and Psychology, I know I am a saint.

Cute photo with the girl! 


This is her silly face. Child please!  

After the gala I had to walk to my car in high heels, at 10 o'clock at night, in the dark, freezing my long legs off,  by myself. I usually do not complain or care that I am a single lady just livin' life carrying on and what have you, but there are times it would be nice for the world to make some allowances for us single ladies, if you know what I mean.  Below is my list of single lady perks I would like to see adopted in the world as soon as possible.

1. Single Lady Parking Spaces 
I think it is high time the close to the door spaces stop being hogged by the elderly and the handicapped.  Looking as good as I did Friday night and walking alone to my car in a dark neighborhood should not be happening the world. Am I right ladies? 

2. You Are Fabulous Gift Registry 
I love all my friends that have gotten married or are getting married soon. Love them.  I also love being in their weddings or going to their weddings to show my support of their nuptials.  I even love buying them things for the home they are going to be making together. I like to think they think of me every time they use the coffee mugs I bought or sleep on the sheets I bought them (Gross.  I actually never buy anything for the bedroom that happens to be on a registry). But what about me?  I mean just because I am not getting married anytime soon does not mean I couldn't use a Kitchen Aid or  Ninja Blender?  Can we petition Pinterest, they are in charge of all weddings now right, and come up with a single girls gift registry? Perhaps for her 30th birthday which is coming up in November? hmmm?

3. Moving Day Boyfriend 
I hate moving!  I was all OK with it when I was fresh out of college.  I would move a bed up three flights of stairs and not bat an eyelash.  Now, I can think of nothing worse.   The idea of having to lift heavy boxes, hire movers that are creepy men in tank tops, and then get everything in its place is daunting.  I once had a boyfriend when I had to move and let me tell you it was nice, he even had a truck.  I have considered finding boys on Match.com a month or so before I move again just so I could have some extra muscle.

4. Furniture Assembler  
Yes I know I can hire a handyman to do this or heck I could even do it myself.  I actually have built my own furniture,  and that desk only wobbles when you put something on it.  I am telling you I am just not interested in furniture assembly. 

5. Single Girl Security System 
When I come home late at night and the house is empty I would love it if I had someone who would walk from room to room and make sure the person I am convinced is going to murder me is not hiding in a closet or a shower.  Yes, I check for myself and I am always uber dramatic; throwing doors open, flicking on the lights, hitting the ground in case I startled the gun man and they shoot.  Not that I want a boyfriend to be shot.  I actually only think about these things when I am home alone. 

6. Dog Taker Outsider 
I love my little Penny girl.  I just do not love it when she wakes me up at 4 in the morning and I have to take her outside to potty.  It would be great if when you bought a puppy they provided a person to help shoulder the load if you are single.  I am telling you I could live without seeing as much puppy poop as I have in my short life. 

7. Junk Food Eater 
Occasionally I will eat some junk food, OK I really would eat it every day if I could.  The only problem is that It is just me and a bag of Cooler Ranch Doritos   If will power was actually a thing this situation would not be a problem.  I have been known to eat a lot of junk food, I actually made myself sick this weekend because I ate too many cookies.  It would be great if there was another person around to eat some of the junk when I break down and run to Target in the middle of the night. 

8. Fashion Photographer 
Not trying to brag but I think I look really pretty most days.  I usually do not capture a photo of my beauty because there are only so many times you can ask a student or stranger on the street to capture that moment in your life. 

I hope you come on over to my neck of the woods and say hello and maybe stay awhile or follow me on bloglovin, twitter, or instagram! 

Everyone make sure you congratulate Raewyn for getting married to a man who will fill in all eight of these things for her!  

Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Check out one of our featured Warrior Queens:

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Dating Tips from Looking For Love Online [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you! I've got a real treat for you today! I was able to score a guest post from Looking for Love Online - an anonymous blog about dating!

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I'm so excited to be doing my very first guest post :) 

My blog is about my online dating "adventures" and stories about some of the weirdos I've met.
I'm single, 23 years old, and I'm not skinny.



Where all my single ladies at? 




Let's talk about dating:
If you've ever been on a date you've experienced a little bit of hesitation, nervous behaviors, and possibly cold feet.


What if this guy doesn't look like his pictures?
What if he is quiet during the meal?
What if he doesn't like me?
What if he creeps me out?
What if he's a mass murderer?


We've ALL experienced those first date flutters, but sometimes the dates turn out better than planned.

Dating should be a fun experience as well as a learning experience. Don't ever bail on a date because you feel like it'll be a waste of time. Here are some positive things that come from a date with someone you know you won't be spending the rest of your life with:


  1. Networking skills: This is a great opportunity for you to learn how to create conversations with people you might feel uncomfortable around. You may find yourself in your future career having to converse with men and women that you don't necessarily like.
  2. Etiquette: Going out on a date hopefully typically includes a nice sit down meal. Now, I was raised in the south, so I was taught manners. Sometimes our table manners aren't the best, so practice makes perfect!
  3. New Discoveries: When the topic of the first physical meeting arises, suggest a place you've never been before. You could also suggest something you've wanted to cross off your bucket list that's within reason, of course.
  4. Be Yourself: Most of the time, us ladies are constantly trying to set the bar higher and higher. Take these first dates to practice showing these guys who you really are without the bigger horse. Again, practice makes perfect.
  5. Show off new outfits: Uhm, hello! What girl doesn't want to do this?! You just bought a new dress on sale and got the shoes on sale, too?! Now you have a perfectly good reason to show them off: Go on a date!

So, there ya have it. Dating doesn't always have to be so negative! If you get rejected just:



Nah.. just kidding, don't do that, but I love this quote! It always makes me feel better about my single-ness.
"I'm single because I was born that way." - Mae West

Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!
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Check out one of our featured Warrior Queens:

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Decorating Your First Apartment [Guest Post]


While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you!  Breckenridge Clare shares decorating tips for your first apartment. I remember our apartment was filled with mismatched hand me down stuff [I got our coffee table set for $10 on Craigslist!]
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Getting my first apartment was one of the most exciting times. All I could imagine was how I was going to decorate it and what colors everything would be. But realistically after finishing my freshman year of college, I didn’t have the funding to wholly decorate my apartment and neither did my roommate. We simply had enough to get by from week to week with groceries and the basic necessities. This was a time that I had the taste of the real world and it wasn’t very comforting to say the least.

So how do YOU decorate your first apartment on a budget?

First know the places where you will find the best deals: Goodwill or a thrift store (just wait to see why,) Target, and Dollar Tree (or another Dollar Store near you.)

So many people say that Pinterest is the best place to find ideas on how to decorate on a budget, which is absolutely the truth!

For furniture, go to Goodwill. No matter if it’s an old coffee table with scratches or an old lamp stand; you can update the pieces with new paint, stains, and maybe even some fun Gold Leaf detailing.

Your apartment is supposed to be yours, so make it you.

As for your walls, you can find frames at the Dollar Tree (or other dollar store,) and either paint them or leave them depending on the look you want. If you want fun little pictures you can print them from online OR update the images in the frame using fun clippings from your magazines.

Your silverware, plates, etc… can come from the Dollar Tree. Update them using the “baking” method when you bake sharpie onto plates. Just make sure they are oven safe first. You can even update your silverware by dipping the ends into paint for a fun modern look.

Happy Decorating!

Xo

BCC



Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Trend Forecast: Shoes [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you!  Taylor has all of the latest trends on her blog, and I love getting ideas from her! 
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Hi everyone! Taylor here from Lights Camera Catwalk talking the latest trends with you! 

All girls are some type of shoe queen; weather it be heels, sneakers, boots, etc. 

The latest shoe trend that's been popping up EVERYWHERE is the return of the mule. I know right, how 20th century? I'm loving this trend paired with slim cut pants or joggers. Below you will find some of the hottest mules out there, and to fit your budget! 

Special thanks to Raewyn for having me, hope you are having the time of your life on your honeymoon!

thelcc_mules1 thelcc_mules2 thelcc_mules_4 thelcc_mules3 
[All photos via Pinterest]


You can follow Lights Camera Catwalk on Bloglovin, Twitter, and Instagram!


Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Check out one of our featured Warrior Queens:

Monday, April 21, 2014

How To: Spring Nails and an Outfit to Match [Guest Post]

While I'm honeymooning in Europe [I just landed!], a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you! I can't wait to try this nail polish style - I think I could actually do it! 

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I'm Rania and I blog over at Excuse Denied. I'll be posting for Raewyn today!



Spring is here! Spring is here! And to celebrate I've come up with a simple, Spring manicure that is easy enough for you to do at home. I've also styled an outfit to go with your new nails. Remember, you can change the colors of the manicure to suit you, but I thought pastel purple and peach worked perfectly together for this new season. As for the outfit - this is just something fun I've put together to go with the two colors I wanted to paint my nails. You don't HAVE to purchase these items. You might even have something similar in your own wardrobe. I've just showed you how easy it is to pair two colors that are completely opposite. Ok, enough talking, let's get started. 

This is what you'll need:

You will need the following things, additionally, I added a bobby-pin into the mix, but we'll get to that in a few. If you are skilled at cutting your own cuticles, go with that. I am not that skilled, so a gel cuticle remover is ideal for me and so easy to use. 




Step 1: File your nails down and make them even. When filing, make sure you use long strokes and not short ones. Short strokes make your nails more prone to breaking. Long strokes are a lot more forgiving for your nails and allows you to get a precise and smooth file. 

Step 2: Push back cuticles. Apply the Instant Cuticle Remover and let it sit on your nails for about 5-8 minutes. This softens the cuticles, making them easier to push back. This is where the orange stick comes into play. Use the orange stick to push the cuticles back and shape them. Cutting your cuticles is never the way to go, as that part of your nail is prone to infection. We love cuticles and they love you too, as long as you take care of them properly! 

Step 3: Apply a base coat. This is one thing I hardly ever do (as you can see, my nails are tinted blue from my previous manicure) but it's a super important step. Applying a base coat allows your polish to grip to your nail as well as protect your nails from staining. Only apply 1 coat though, as more coats will make the polish too thick making it dry slower. 

Step 4: Apply the first coat of your desired polish. Yay! Color! Apply this polish thinly, making sure to cover your entire nail. This step can be messy, because you're going to apply another (or more) coat. Try not to be too messy, as cleaning up nail polish around your nail is NEVER fun. 



Step 5: Apply your final coat. This is the coat that needs to be perfect because this is the one everyone will be seeing. Make sure to carefully apply a thin coat covering your entire nail. Don't put too much polish on the brush or else your final coat will be gloomy and dry too slowly. 

Step 6: Design time. I decided to go with a simple design, but I really love it because it's super chic (imagine how this would look with white + black polish!). The design isn't too bold, that's why I think it's so appropriate for Spring. I use a bobby-pin head to apply the little dot. All I did to the bobby-pin was stretch it out so it would be easier to use the head (ball type point) to dot the accent color to the base of the nail. You can either put the dot on the base of the nail, tippy top, or even have then going from the base to the top in a row of dots (that'd be cute!). Allow this to COMPLETELY dry before applying a top coat. 

You're done! After you apply a top-coat (I do two thin layers), you're done. Make sure your nail is completely dried before performing tasks. You can even dip them in freezing cold water to make the drying process go quicker. After the nail is dry, I apply cuticle oil around my cuticles and lotion to make the ashy-ness from the filing disappear. Et voilĂ  - a beautiful and easy Spring manicure. 

Now, what do you wear with your new spring-do? Well, here's an outfit I styled below on Polyvore to help you with just that. If you're feeling adventurous, this outfit is for you. If not, keep it simple with just the top and skirt and some of your favorite shoes. 



Remember, when putting together an outfit with bold colors, make sure your base is neutral. The black and white striped top and grey skirt is a perfect base for the loud shoes, a clutch and fun jewelry. Keep it fun! Fashion and beauty are things that should be light-hearted and fun. And since we've been in this winter stump for so long, I'm craving bold color and brighter days. 

Thank you for reading! If you want more posts like this, head on over to Excuse Denied. :) 

Rania Bolton
Excuse Denied, a style blog 

Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm gallivanting [and hopefully not freezing] in Europe!

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Check out one of our featured Warrior Queens:

Friday, April 18, 2014

Wake Up Prepped [Guest Post]

While I'm getting ready to get married TOMORROW and then honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you!  Lauren has such good ideas down here. I need to start doing this when I get back! 5am always comes too quick.

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Hey everyone! I’m Lauren, blogger  from lauren elyse Can. Raewyn asked me to help out today because she’s busy getting prepped for a WEDDING! (ps I want pictures!) I write a lifestyle blog from the perspective of a student-athlete, and I was more than happy to oblige as I’m a whole hearted believer the warrior queen philosophy! I figured I’d share some of the things that help get my morning off on the right foot. And when you start with a great morning, you can’t help but have a great day!




Four Ways to Wake Up Prepped and Ready

1. Clear your space- okay, anyone who knows me at all knows that I have a messy side. My room is never spotless, despite my best efforts. However I know that when my productivity or motivation is at an all-time low, the clutter in my space does nothing but drag me down even further. Before I can even attempt at being productive, I HAVE to tidy up my living space! It’s not being able to do homework until your desk is clear. Sometimes I’ll do it right before I go to bed at night, so when I wake up in the morning I know I can hop right out of bed (and to the coffee machine) without tripping over nonsense from the day before

2. The planning notecard- I always keep a stack of note cards by my bed, and if I feel flustered or busy (who doesn’t, we’re collegiates!) I take a second and write down my plan for the whole next day. I don’t need to write down buildings or times even, just a plan of action- one event to the next. Sometimes this will looks like: Weights, class, class, practice, class, practice, group project, laundry and other days it would look like: advising meeting, coffee date, practice, class, practice, class, run.

3. The food notecard- This is the second of two notecards I write out nearly every night. I know you read on the internet constantly about how keeping a food journal is a great way to keep your health on track- there’s even apps where you can scan the barcodes or look up what you ordered for lunch! As someone who tries to menu plan as often as possible and rarely eats out however, I found this method more effective. Who has time to keep a food journal anyways? By writing down the night BEFORE what I’m planning on eating that day, I can make breakfast faster, pack lunches easier, and know the steps to make dinner before I even wake in the door. This looks a lot like the planning notecard! Breakfast: oatmeal, banana, coffee. Lunch: yogurt and granola, apple and peanut butter, veggies and hummus. Dinner: leftover pasta with mushroom sauce and broccoli slaw.

4. Prep the prepping- Another tip you read for the morning often is “pack everything the night before.” But has anyone here tried to pack a salad the night before and still find it edible the next day? Ew, um, no. While I do what I can the night before (like packing my backpack!) I know I’ve got a few things left to do in the morning. Make sure that evening that you’re washing tupper-wares, setting up your coffee machine, charging your laptop, etc.!





Hope a few of these can help you out! You can follow more of lauren elyse CAN on Twitter and Instagram: @laurenekelba. I’d LOVE to hear what helps you get going in the am!

Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm trying not to freak out!!

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Stay Golden: A Positivity Link Up

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Stay Golden is a weekly linkup that celebrates positivity!
Positivity comes in a ton of different shapes and forms: from being excited about a new drink at Starbucks, to paying it forward, to having a not-so-great day and consciously turning it around.
So write a post, link it up, and get hopping - cause we can make Positive Thursdays a thing, right? It comes after Wednesday and it's right before Friday, so why not celebrate it with some good thoughts?!

linkup-rules

Participate! Don't just leave your link and take off - instead, spend some time hopping around to other blogs and making new connections.
Leave a comment on the blog linked up before yours. This is the most important rule, because that's what linkups and hops are all about - meeting new people and new bloggers! After you add your blog's link, click over to the blog linked up before yours and leave a comment on one of their most recent posts.
Grab a button. Please don't forget to include a link back to the hop in your weekly post. Just grab the code below, and throw it into your post or onto your sidebar!


Stay Gold: The Weekly Positivity Link-up!

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Modernette Being Jane Be a Warrior QueenMarry Mint If you are interested in being a co-host, please check out some further information and sign up via the form right here.




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Top Random Acts of Kindness [Guest Post]

While I'm finishing up wedding prep, celebrating and honeymooning in Europe, a few wonderful bloggers will be taking over my blog! I am so excited to be sharing these ladies with you!  This guest post is so special to me, because I cannot get enough of RAK! :)
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 Hey there, I'm Brooke! I blog over at this is me {the blog} about college life, concerts (I go to a ton!), and other random things any 18 year old would post about! Feel free to stop by & say hi!



Personally, I love doing the smallest, simplest things for people to make their day. My mom loves to do them as well, which is where I've gotten most of my ideas. I just thought that I would share these with all of you so that maybe you could make someones day by doing just one simple thing. Some may cost money, but there are many that don't!

1. Leave a sticky note on a personal belonging just saying simple things such as "You're an awesome person," or "Have a great day! :)" It also makes people smile, especially when they're left wondering who left it. Or, similarly...

2. ...leave one on a bathroom mirror or a mirror in a common place! Even the back of a door (provided you cannot get into trouble by doing so). Simply leaving a note on a girls' bathroom mirror saying "You're beautiful, you don't need this mirror!" is all it takes to make a person's day.

3. This is my mom's specialty so I just thought I would share this with you. This one can get a little more pricey if you do it often, but it's so worth watching the reaction. If you go through a drive-thru, preferably before work/school, not around dinner time, ask the person working the register how much the person behind you's meal will cost. If it's in your price range, hand over the money. Then while you're at the next window, you can watch their reaction from a safe distance, and without it being weird if you're concerned about that!

4. Do a favor/small job for someone, and don't accept a payment, in any form. It only takes a little bit of time and it can mean so much to someone else who is maybe having a bad day or their check was smaller than they'd like, etc. It can help someone out monumentally.

5. Write a note or letter to a person that has helped you out. Thank someone. Just think how happy you would be if someone did this for you, a thank-you out of the blue!

6. A little bit similar to the last one, call or write a letter to a parent or both parents. They've done a lot for you, I'm sure. Tell them you love them. You appreciate them. They're your biggest supporters so why not give them a little love too?

7. This one is special to college students/people residing in some apartments, etc. If you live somewhere that there are coin-operated laundry facilities and you happen to have some extra quarters lying around, get the amount needed for one and put them in the machine so someone gets a nice surprise when they go to do their laundry!

Random Acts of Kindness are one of the most simple things you can do to make a big difference in someone else's life. Make someone smile!


Thank you so much for taking over my blog as I'm doing last minute prep for my wedding!

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P.s. Today is my mom's birthday! Happy Birthday!! You have done so much for me in my life - and so much for Iman and I in the past two years. We could never express how truly grateful we are!! I hope today is wonderful!

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