Carry-on essentials for sunny destinations

I’m a huge proponent for always traveling with nothing but carry-ons. Why? Because waiting for suitcases at the luggage carousel can add so much extra time to getting out of the airport when arriving to a new destination. Plus, I may have had one too many scares about checked-in luggage going missing, so I’ve learned to travel light with only the essentials.

Ibex leather and wool travel organizer is a carry-on essential for travel

Today, I’m sharing my carry-on essentials for sunny destinations. I just came back from the Dominican Republic just under a month ago (wow, it feels like forever ago!) and found great products to bring along to this sunny destination that not only helped to keep me entertained while in transit for 12+ hours, but are also TSA-approved for carry-on bags.

For starters, let’s talk about a product that I cannot travel without when going on any plane rides in general. The Mario Badescu aloe, herb, and rosewater spray is such a refreshing treat! I’ve talked about this product before in my TSA-approved toiletries bag, but I cannot get enough of this stuff. It really helps my skin feel refreshed, especially after sitting on planes with recycled air circulating. The 2oz travel size also meets all of the TSA requirements.

After some less-than-pleasant experiences with lotion-styled sunscreens exploding in my purse, I’ve started carrying the Sugar Sport Treatment Sunscreen. Although this may seem a bit pricey at the $25 price point, the stick-applicator really makes this a dream to put on. The formula glides on smoothly, smells slightly sweet, and moisturizes without feeling thick like most sunscreens. I like to carry this in my carry on because of the ease of access for application straight off the plane.

The last must-have is this Ibex Urban Tool Roll Up Queen City case. While I received this item for review from Ibex in exchange for this post, I am considering purchasing another one of these for my partner. As someone who has suffered from spending the first 15 minutes of a flight untangling my headphones from charging cables in my purse, this roll-up case is such a dream for staying organized. Each of the 3 loops are adjustable, which makes the customization of sizing for storing pens, cables, etc endless. I also love the snap-button pocket for bigger items like my Anker battery pack, which I bring on every flight since not all aircrafts offer charging outlets. Aside from the practicality of this case, the material combination is so beautiful. The Merino wool and leather combo is such a dream!

And there you have it! Aside from wallet, passport, and some snacks, this is all I pack in my carry-on purse when traveling. I like to stay organized and not have to fret about digging through a bottomless-pit bag to find what I’m looking for, and these are my bare essentials!

3 Tips for keeping fitness goals

tips for keeping fitness goals

One thing that I’ve struggled with a lot in the past is keeping up with fitness goals. Although my original fitness goal for 2017 was around yoga and not running, I decided to pivot activities. Despite changing things up, these same tips apply.

Context: My Seattle BFF has a goal to run every weekend, increasing the distance by at least 1 block each session. As I’m not a strong runner at all (not much as changed since 2015… heh) and barely made it 4 blocks after weeks of trying to increase continuous distance (I blamed it on the cold, wet, Seattle Fall weather back then, I decided to share some tips for how we’re helping each other stay accountable in keeping our fitness goals for the year.

running-buddies

1. Find a workout buddy!

Depending on what your fitness goal is, having a buddy to workout with is huge. Not only does it help with accountability for showing up (scheduling to meet up, making sure the workout/activity happens, etc), but it also helps to keep motivation levels high while actually doing the workout.

2. On top of one big goal, set mini weekly goals

Instead of only having one big goal, it’s been helpful to have weekly mini goals. I’ve found myself trying to set goals like “Run 1 mile without stopping”, only to become discouraged even before the run starts. Today, having a mini goal of pushing one more block in distance every time we run has made a big difference. Not only does this mini goal feel much more attainable, but the immediate satisfaction of hitting a new PR every time we run ups the stickiness of the overall big goal.

I like to think of this one like breaking down a big task. If we start with something huge, it can feel overwhelming and undoable. Breaking it down into the smaller components that make up the bigger picture and chunking the tasks makes it seem more attainable. Similar method for how I’ve been thinking about fitness goals and how to make them feel less daunting.

Brooks Running gear: ghost crop, LSD jacket

3. Rain or shine, keep a consistent schedule

One thing that I noticed in the past is how easy it is to fall off the fitness train. A day of rain and deciding to not workout could throw an entire schedule off– not only would I have put off working out on this particular day, but I found myself dragging my feet even harder the next day/time to workout (even if the weather was beautiful out) because I allowed myself to skip a day.

So far this year, I’ve gone for 2 rainy runs. One day it was so cold and bone-chilling that we decided to cut the run short. Despite not making it to our goal distance, the experiences of staying accountable and keeping each other motivated in bad weather made the next run in nice weather a lot more satisfying. I even caught myself finding more internal motivation on the next run because of the fact that the previous week’s run was less satisfying in terms of distance and set a new PR!

Even if you don’t have a goal for running, I think these 3 tips apply for anything that requires consistency and accountability! The hardest part is always getting dressed and out the door. Everything after that get easier! ;)

A huge thank you to Brooks Running for providing us with beautiful running gear featured in this post! I’m wearing last year’s LSD jacket (current season’s version), the ghost crop tights, and PureCadence 6 shoes. On my BFF is the men’s LSD running jacket in yellow.

Clothing budget recap: March 2017

Spoiler alert: This month’s spending was really low for my clothing budget recap. Since March was vacation month, I tried to reuse as many existing Summer pieces as I could without buying anything that was not absolutely necessary. A few days before having to fly out, I realized that I didn’t have any Summer shoes and had to call in some help from Amazon and their 2-day Prime shipping to fix this. If it weren’t for the shoes, I would’ve spent under $10 this month!
budgeting bloggers: March 2017 clothing budget recap

Purchased new:
1. New Look macrame high neck bikini top – $7.50 (exact)
This bikini top was such a steal! I found it on clearance off ASOS (originally $27) and there was one left in my size. Guess it was meant to be! With this purchase I also bought this bikini set as well as this one with rose gold piping, but I ended up returning both of the sets because the fit on both of the tops were really unflattering.

2. Marco Republic “Berlin” peep toe gladiator sandals – $20 (exact)
Full disclosure: this is the first time I’ve ever purchased footwear off Amazon from a brand that I’ve never worn before. It was a complete leap of faith on fit and comfort since I had no backup open-toed footwear to bring on vacation otherwise. These Marco Republic shoes were such a surprise! They are true to size and were super comfy. I wore them every night for dinner when more-than-casual footwear was required. Truly surprised by the quality considering the price.

3. Bianca glitter jelly pointed toe flats – $10 (exact)
I haven’t owned a pair of jelly shoes since I was 8 and these were a pretty “grown up” pair to reintroduce to the closet! I was pretty worried about the “glitter jelly” because – for better or worse – I am super boring and don’t enjoy having glittery shoes. Unfortunately, there didn’t seem to be any “grown up” looking jelly shoes in my price range on Amazon other than these. Thankfully, the shoes showed up and there was no glitter be found! So if you want glitter jellies, don’t get these ones. These shoes were perfect for the beach, especially with the swirl jelly pattern that made shaking sand out of them super easy!

Thrifted:
Nothing!

With March being such a busy month and rarely having time to myself, I didn’t get around to thrifting anything for my closet. It all worked out because I didn’t need anything other than the items purchased above.

Total for March: $37.50

Now that we’re 25% of the way through 2017, I’ve started looking back at the previous clothing budget recap posts for what was purchased earlier in the year and how much has been spent in total. January was the most expensive month so far in the clothing department coming in at a whopping $157. February was almost 10% of January’s spending, coming in at $16.50.

Originally, $200 a month was budgeted for clothing. By now, I could have spent $600 but only touched $211. Super proud to have been staying true to my budgeting goals for this year and excited to see how this continues to trend in the upcoming months!

As always, linking up with Fran’s Budgeting Bloggers! Check out her post and all the other budgets for March.

Vacation style with floral print pants

It’s been rather quiet here on the blog for the last week… If you’ve been following along on IG, you’ll know why! I had originally intended to have posts scheduled to trigger while on vacation, but as life would pan out, I was scrambling until the last second to even pack my suitcase for this trip and blogging fell on the back-burner.

After spending a week in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, with the goal of being a beached whale every single day, it’s been nice to come back to reality. Being aware of needing “me time” (and some sunshine), unplugging – for the most part – and lounging on the beach every day was exactly what I needed to recharge.

J.Jill floral print pants
Vacation style
outfit details:
buttondown blouse: H&M (old, circa 2012)
floral print pants: c/o J.Jill (exact)
lace-up peep toe heels: Marco Republic (exact)

Floral print pants

This was one of my favourite outfits of the entire trip. I had originally packed a few pairs of shorts and summer dresses, but with the number of mosquito bites I received within the first few hours of landing (counted ~20 on my legs, no exaggeration), long pants were the way to go! These floral print pants from J.Jill were a lifesaver! They’re listed as ankle pants, but as you can see, they’re pretty long. Perfect for what I needed to keep my ankles from being bitten. ;)

Is it Spring yet?

After springing forward with time this weekend, it still doesn’t quite feel like Spring. Call me crazy, but the hail/rain/snow weirdness that Seattle is experiencing is really throwing my wardrobe planning for a loop! Every time I venture out with exposed ankles (or even shins, in this case) it happens to be beautiful in the mornings and then an absolute wreck when it comes time to trekking home later in the day. Mother Nature, please make up your mind so I can wear this dress out more often without getting “shin-sicles” (shins + popsicles = shin-scicles).

minimalist outfit idea: mockneck midi dress and moto leather jacket
outfit details:
cropped moto jacket: MISSGUIDED (similar)
mock neck maxi dress: c/o J.Jill (exact)
mixed media necklace: Maslo Jewelry (similar)
booties: Seychelles (old; similar pair)

maslo jewelry geometric mix metal necklace
minimalist outfit idea: mockneck turtleneck dress and moto leather jacket

I realize that I’ve been reaching for this cropped moto jacket every day that it doesn’t rain. It’s by far one of my favourite coats (worn in the Summer, Fall, and Winter) and I can only hope that MISSGUIDED releases an updated version of it this year for everyone who’s been asking about it!
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