Sunday, December 21, 2014

Travel Guide: Colorado Springs, Colorado

Colorado Springs has always been a family favorite travel destination. I've visited close to once or twice every year since I was born. After my most recent trip to Colorado Springs, a few weekends ago, I thought it would be a good idea to share some of my favorite places and things to do in this mile-high city.

Ride the Cog-Railway to the top of Pikes Peak 
Imagine being able to see four states at once. Picture nature at in it's purest form. Fresh air, wild life, and a gift shop and snacks at the top. An hour train ride brings you to beautiful sights at 14,115 ft. up. 

Manitou Springs 
A little outside of Colorado Springs is the small town of Manitou Springs. Shop for traditional western gifts and treasures or treat yourself in the unique coffee and candy stores. 

Mona Lisa
My favorite place of all is the Mona Lisa. A fondue restaurant located inside of a historical home on the main street of Manitou Springs. Each room is set for a unique eating experience. This restaurant will make you feel warm, relaxed, romantic, and welcome while you fill your stomach with delicious eats.

Cave of the Winds
Take a tour of these complex caves that are said to be 500 million years old. The rock formations are unbelievable to see. If you're lucky, you'll be able to hear the winds from the Rockies as you venture through the caves.

Garden of the Gods
Climb, run, jump off the beaten path to find some amazing boulders and landscapes that will make you question gravity. 

Hope you enjoy these sights during your next visit to Colorado!

Monday, December 15, 2014


Everyone has a brand they admire from afar. One that is aesthetically inspiring but may or may not come at an affordable price. Anthropologie has become that brand for me.

First off, can we talk about their photography and pinterest posts? It's the simplest of the style placed in a rich and rustic backdrop that makes the designs so desirable. Not only do they break down the basics of wardrobe, they also make everyday occurrences look like attractive activities. Place a warm cup of cocoa, next to cozy woolen socks, layer with a warm photo filter and we have the  most liked instagram photo. It's brands like these that inspire my way of living. Relaxed. warm. simplistic.

Take a look for yourself and quickly become inspired…
**All photos are from Anthropologies pinterst page. I do not take credit for any of them. 

 What brands do you admire?

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sometimes in Minnesota, you gotta wear what you gotta wear. I'm talking about comfy sweatpants, warm sweaters, and dare I say turtlenecks?
This past week we have been experiencing temps 20 degrees below average. (Thank you Mother Nature, we always feel your love here.) So with that being said, I have resorted to styling my comfiest of clothes in a way that doesn't look like I'm a walking sleeping bag.
For today, I'm louging around the house so these drawstring pants from Loft and this slouchy shirt from Primp will work just fine.


Monday, September 29, 2014

The Secret's Out!

About Chipotle's guac. Yes ladies and gentlemen I have found and successful duplicated (if I do say so myself) the famous Chipotle guacamole recipe. It is two of my favorite things, simple and delicious.

Let's get started.

six avocados
one tablespoon of lemon/lime juice
one teaspoon of salt
one half cup of cilantro
one half cup of red onions
one fourth cup of jalepanions (seeds not included)

And that's it! I told you it was simple. I do have to make a plug for the Chipotle Cultivate Festival, where I originally learned how to make this famous guac. It's a festival organized by Chipotle that centers around food, music, and healthy foods that are naturally grown and good for you. Yet another reason to love Chipotle. 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


"A set of principles concerned with the nature and appreciation of beauty, especially in art."

  Have I mentioned on the blog that I love Pinterest? Well, let's make it official, I LOVE Pinterest. I love that I can go there at anytime and find inspiration through the beauty of everyday things. My Pinterest account is centered around the theme of Aesthetics. Pinning style, furniture, food, and more that I appreciate and find simply beautiful.

So go get aesthetically inspired! The limits are endless.

Go check out my Pinterests boards at

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Simply Delicious

Remember when I mentioned last post that I am starting to become more experimental in the kitchen? Well, this pasta is the result of that, and I absolutely love it. You can make tweaks and additions to this recipe, but I love it in its simplest form.

Also, you may notice that I don't put any quantities next to each ingredient… that's because I don't usually measure how much of each I use. I think this pasta tastes the best when it is made to your liking.


Pasta (any shape or type)
Olive Oil (this is a must)


Monday, September 15, 2014

"Sorry, I was busy watching YouTube."

If you've only been on YouTube to watch music videos and "My Push up Bra will help me get my man". Then I'm about to introduce you to a whole new realm of entertainment. At the beginning of this year I discovered an entirely different outlet of YouTube content. From beauty and fashion to everyday blogging (that's right, video blogging) these YouTube videos are like Netflix but dare I say better? Ok, let's not go there. But still, I just can't get enough!

If you think I'm crazy, or have no idea what I'm talking about, I've listed a few of my favorite YouTube channels that you've got to check out. They will keep you entertained for hours and have you saying "Sorry, I was busy watching YouTube."

"EssieButton" - This girl is as real as it gets and loves to tell it how it is. Essie lives in England but is originally from Canada, and is by far by favorite YouTube vlogger. She describes herself as a "beauty blogger who occasionally dabbles in life endeavors". 

Bethany Mota - A classic YouTuber. Seriously. This girl has like 6 million followers on YouTube. If there is any channel you need to check out, it's hers. I do have to say though, she does target her videos mostly towards teens. So maybe not an all-time favorite of mine, but still worth watching.

Tess Christine - A fellow Minnesotan! And a fashion guru. Tess has an amazing sense of style. Not only does she film "get the look for less" videos, but she also posts "outfits of the week" and "get ready with me" videos. Of course, she has beauty and food content too but the fashion is my fav. 

"The Kitchy Kitchen" - Claire is a new channel discovery of mine but if you love to cook (or just love food in general) then this girl is unreal. Her recipes are so easy but so delicious. Ever since I started watching her videos I have been inspired to experiment more in the kitchen. No lies.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Life Through a Lens

It's amazing how a single picture can recreate an entire memory. I look at this picture and instantly remember being in Italy. My mom told me to take a picture of these flowers because they were beautiful and bright pink. I was hot and slightly crabby, but I took it anyway. I'm glad I did.

I look at this picture from the same trip and remember seeing these buildings from blocks away. I knew I had to get a picture of them because they looked "artsy". 

I remember being slightly disappointed when I realized that this picture of my macaroon turned out blurry… after I had already eaten the Macaroon. 

I remember the crowds of people that stood on this bridge to take the perfect picture. 

Few words are needed when you look at life through a lens. I like to let the picture do most the talking. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

A Rare Time of Year

Welcome soon-to-be graduates to the final stretch
Welcome everyone to May

This time of the year always signifies either a start or an end to everyone. For those graduating or wrapping up the academic year, it signifies the end. It also means the start of a new chapter and lifestyle. All those things we now consider constant in our lives, like going to class, waking up in our college apartment, making ourselves the same meals, doing homework in our favorite spot, will soon end. Even for those of you going onto graduate school, while most of those things will stick around, they will feel different. You will feel different.

For those that have already graduated from college either last year, five years, or 20 years ago probably find May to be a meaningful time. All year you have tackled busy schedules, work meetings, and more emails than you can imagine. While those constants will still be there, they will also be accompanied by the start of summer, possibly a more relaxed work environment, and more family vacations. Either way, no matter where you are in life, May is a rare time of year.

I encourage you to reflect on your beginning or ending. Where is your life taking you next? 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I try to write down quotes that inspire me. It's a great exercise that allows you to view life through different lenses. Today I wanted to share a few of my favorites with you. Also, in honor of Earth Day yesterday I thought I'd throw in a few spring-inspired pictures from this weekend. 

"You're only growing when you're playing out of your comfort zone."

" If you want something you've never had, then you've got to 
do something you've never done."

"Be here now and find happiness in the moment you're in."

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter!

I hope your Easter is filled with family, lots of sunshine, and colorful eggs! Even as a 22 year old I still love Easter egg hunts and all the candy that comes along with it. Since the weather today is near perfect, I thought I'd share a few pictures with you. Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Book Review

Today I'm going to switch it up and do a book review this Wednesday. If you're a book worm like me or trying to encourage yourself to read more, this is a great option. 

Now, you may have already heard of this book and be thinking, "Allison, this is a book for women, not men." Wrong! For all you men out there, this book is important for you to read too. Especially if you work in a corporate environment, this book will open your eyes to things you may not be aware of or shed light on things you have already experienced. 

Ok, so what is this book about. Instead of reading a long summary, I thought it would be beneficial to tell you some of my key takeaways. Hopefully some of these will spark your interest to want to read more. 

It's a fact that there are a far greater number of men at the top of any work sector than women. 

Why? Because women systematically underestimate their abilities compared to men.

As a society we tend to put more pressure on men to succeed at work then women. We need to make it ok for men to stay at home too if they'd like. 

This book ultimately encourages women to sit at the table, literally, if you're a part of a team make sure people know you're there and don't be afraid to contribute your ideas. 

Second, make their partner a real partner and evenly split the work of child rearing. Many women have a job during the day and then come home to do twice as much hose work  and three times as much child rearing as men. 

Finally, don't not leave before you leave. In other words don't count yourself out of the workforce if you're still in it. 

Some awesome advice from a women who has experienced it all. Lean in by Sheryl Sandberg is a must-read.  

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Midweek Motivation

Ok so it's Thursday and not exactly midweek but that's because my "motivator" for this week has been keeping me away from all technology…

My midweek motivation has been none other than the beautiful spring weather. Yesterday we reached a high of 70… 70! Being from Minnesota and catching a break from negative temperatures and a polar vortex has been so refreshing. This weather makes me feel productive, energized, and positive all at the same time. It's exactly what I need to motivate me for the rest of the week. If you're a fellow Minnesotan or are also experiencing warm temps and blue skies, go outside. See how a walk and some fresh air can change your attitude and perspective on the things you have to tackle this week. I completely believe that the simplest things in life can bring us the most good. Who knew weather could be so great?

What's your midweek motivation?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Things I'm Loving Lately

Everyday essentials and activities that I have been loving, and I think you will too!

Went into this movie not having read the books and with little expectations, but left LOVING it. I just purchased the second book of the series on Amazon.

I'm not embarrassed to say that I have literally been wearing the same pair for the past three days, because they are that comfy. I dare you to put them on… but you won't want to take them off.

This Art Project
I'm always looking for new DIYs to try and this one is a must do. It looks pretty simple and the materials are easily found around the house. Plus, the end result is awesome!

Herbal Essence Naked Shampoo
First of all, the smell of this stuff is amazing. That in itself sold me. However, this shampoo is also really good for your hair. It doesn't have any harsh chemicals and I'm not lying when I say that I noticed a difference after the first time I used it.
I bought the volume version but they also have a shine one too I believe.

Trader Joe's Spicy Chai Latte Mix
Ok so I haven't officially bought this yet because there isn't a convenient Trader Joe's location by me, but I have heard nothing but good things. So from one blogger to the next, and because I have the highest confidence in Trader Joe's, I will recommend this mix if you love chai as much as I do.

This Quote
"A personal style is like handwriting - it happens as the byproduct of our way of seeing things, enriched by the experiences of everything around us." 

Happy weekend everyone!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Midweek Motivation

A new series I am going to start, which will be featured each week, every Wednesday, is called Midweek Motivation.

We all know/refer to Wednesdays as "hump day". The day that signifies that we are halfway to the weekend. The day that proves that since we made it halfway through the week we can hopefully survive the other half. In honor of the infamous Wednesdays in our lives, I want to post little quotes, pictures, and stories that provide you with the extra Midweek Motivation needed to refuel and embrace the second half of the week. Enjoy!

Sometimes we have circumstances in life that can drag us down. Your attitude and actions are your choice. Don't let those moments sabotage your plan for happiness. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

In Search of Inspiration

"If you want to inspire the world, first inspire yourself."

Today's post is all about inspiration and what outlets you can use to spark new thoughts and ideas. I don't know about you, but every once I need a little extra something to open my mind and jump start my imagination. Whether you're a writer, fashionista, artist, or just want a new place to explore, you can use these outlets to find the inspiration you've been looking for. 

Without a doubt, I know everyone has either heard or is a member of this lovely website. I can't tell you how many ideas I have gotten just from visiting the homepage. You don't have to be a member of Pinterest to explore the site (at least not last time I checked), but I highly recommend joining. I have found countless DIY projects, fashion tips, cooking recipes, and amazing quotes from being a part of this site. Essentially what I am saying is that you can't go wrong to use Pinterest when you are in a creative rut. 

This is a site where you can go and find blogs that cover any and every topic (besides sports… sorry). Honestly, one of my favorite things is finding new bloggers that cover topics I love. What better way to get inspired than from your blogging peers.

Ok, I had to put one semi-nerdy outlet in here. But seriously, TedTalks are awesome. This site allows you to listen to millions of different talks by professionals from a wide variety of industries. Some of them are scientific, while other really open your mind to deep questions and world issues. 

A few great TedTalks are here and here

Ha! This one should be obvious enough but we often forget that some of the most amazing information, motivation, and inspiration can be found while reading. I love reading biographies by business professionals such as Sheryl Sandberg, Howard Schultz, and Blake Mycoskie. All of whom have been a part of huge organizations and openly share advice and experiences in their books. 

Now go get inspired! It's almost Monday after all. 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Life Lately

Usually I don't take a ton of pictures on my iPhone like this post makes it seem. However, I stared a new project called The 100 Day Project, inspired by HeyAmberRae. For this project you will need to perform an action once a day, for 100 days. The only requirement is that the action you choose must be repeated in some form every day. Whether that action is to exercise, read for an hour, or take a picture every day, the goal of the project is to better yourself through action.

The project is about action not achievement. You don't need to reach day 100 with a newly decorated apartment. But perhaps your action is to paint a new picture each day, which not only leaves you with 100 new decor pieces for your home, but also gives you lots of practice as an artist!

My action for the 100 Day Project is to expand my creativity in photography. I plan to do this by taking one picture each day for 100 days. The photos you see above are the results of this action.

So what will your action be? What do you want to do to better yourself for the next 100 days?

Join me in this journey!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Scarf: Gap (on sale!)

This polar vortex stuff is nuts, but life is alway a little easier when you have a giant scarf on. 
Stay warm Minnesota!