Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Little Things

Every morning I wake up two hours before I have to be at school. I like being able to sit down and eat breakfast without immediately rushing out the door.

I've got my routine timed pretty perfect to where I'm always ready to leave an hour after my alarm goes off.

It usually only takes me around a half an hour with traffic to get to school, but I always like to give myself plenty of time just in case. That also gives me some time to get to class and read some e-mails or do some last minute studying before class.

But one of my favorite things is the drive there and back. Don't get me wrong - most of the time I absolutely despise the rush hour traffic, but I truly do enjoy commuting.

I say that to people, and I don't think anyone really understands it. Most of my friends I go to school with are shocked that I commute, let alone that I like doing it. Sometimes people can't believe that I drive half an hour each way, but it's really not bad at all.

I've always loved driving, especially on nice days. There's absolutely nothing better than driving with the windows down and some good music cranked up.

One of my favorite things about driving to college though is the view of the city I get to see each day. I have to drive over a viaduct to get to campus, and it always gives a perfect view of downtown. Most of the time the sun is rising as I drive across and the sky paints a gorgeous backdrop of the city.

I see it every day, but every time I still have to steal a couple glances at the city as I drive by. A lot of times my breath catches in my throat because I can't get over how lucky I am to live here.

So even though sometimes I'm about ready to pull my hair out because of the traffic, the view of the city from the viaduct always calms me down and puts me in a better mood to start the day, especially if it's a particularly pretty sunrise.

{This is a view of the city at sunset from the viaduct that I took last fall (not while I was driving!), and it doesn't even do it any justice of what the sky looks like when the sun is peaking up over the buildings.}

The view is just one of the little things in life that make it worth living, and I'm thankful for simple things like colorful sunrises and even more vibrant cities to call home.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Let It Go

The week leading up to Valentine's Day was a whirlwind of activity: tests, homework, and a whole lot of baking.

I started out the week by baking two cakes because I had a few different baking projects I needed to get done for the week.

This was also what I wanted to do pretty much all week. Let's just say that I don't handle being sleep deprived too well....

A Starbucks is an absolute must when you're running on around 5 hours of sleep.

I worked through all of the exhaustion though and was able to get around to the fun part. I had a cake pop order from one of my friends for Frozen cake pops, and I (of course!) jumped at the opportunity. Cake pops and Frozen together - what could be better?


One of the love experts ;)

I was so, so happy with the way the Frozen pops turned out! I also made a few Valentine's Day ones for a family party on Valentine's Day to celebrate my Grandpa's birthday.

I made some cupcakes to go along with them too.

The grandkids with my Grandpa!

The rest of that weekend was spent at the Cincinnati Dance Marathon, better known as CDM. I went with some girls from my sorority, and the event is a fundraising event for Children's Hospital. It's a 24 hour dance marathon. And I had to be there for 24 hours. It was crazy! I may or may not have fallen asleep for about half an hour ;)

I came home from the event and pretty much crashed for a few hours until I had to go back out for two school-related meetings. Absolute craziness! I think I eventually reached a point where I was so tired that I didn't even feel tired anymore. I was surprised that by the time my meetings rolled around I wasn't asleep in the corner.

The past few weeks have been crazy, but I've really enjoyed them at the same time. The relaxation I did this weekend was much needed though!

Friday, February 21, 2014


I am finally (after almost an entire month) getting time to sit down and actually blog! It's crazy how much I've missed it, but I just haven't been able to justify spending the time journaling about my life when I've hardly had even enough time just to live it - ha!

This picture pretty much sums up a lot of what I've been doing lately: homework. I went the first five weeks of the semester without any exams, and then I had three within a week. I've been spending a lot of time studying, and I'm just super relieved that those exams are behind me now and that I have a few more weeks until any more :)

Sometimes in the midst of a hectic school/work day, you just have to treat yourself to your favorite candy bar. At least that's what I do!

I took this picture on my last snow day, which was the 5th. It's crazy how many snow days we've had, but it's been nice at the same time to have days to just catch up. I may not go to school on snow days, but I honestly think I get more work done than on the days I do actually have school.

Plus it's nice to have a super cute puppy to snuggle with inside all day!

My mom's birthday was the 7th, so we celebrated with breakfast at Price Hill Chili. Then while she was at work, I ran out to the BonBonerie to pick up some treats.

I went with the intent of picking up a few cookies for my family. But I went when I was really hungry, so I ended up getting a red velvet cupcake for myself, as well as one of their chocolate caramel macarons because they are the absolute best, and I couldn't resist! (It's honestly a miracle I'm not 500 pounds).

I ended up enjoying the cupcake for lunch that day ;)

My family also went out for dinner that night at Moerlein downtown. I am absolutely obsessed with that restaurant, so I was extremely happy my mom picked it for her birthday dinner. I'm already thinking that I may probably want to go there for my birthday this year. Their menu is great, but the blueberry cobbler? I die......

This is pretty much how I look when I first wake up in the morning too.....

Two weekends ago I went out with a few old grade school friends and it was so much fun. I love how you can go months without seeing some friends and then still pick up just where you left off. We had originally planned to go to Sky Zone, but it was so crazy crowded that we ended up at Dave & Busters instead.

We also grabbed dinner at Chick-fil-a and spent some time shopping in Target. Honestly, I don't think there's anything better than spending a Saturday night laughing and catching up with old friends that you don't see much of anymore.

We also picked up these Oreos at Target (because hello - cookie dough Oreos?!). They were good but didn't actually taste a whole lot like cookie dough, so I was a little disappointed.

I've still got a few more things to post about (including some Valentine's baking projects!), but I think I'll stop here for now. I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Dropping By....

I was totally not expecting to go almost two weeks without posting. This past week has been absolute insanity. I'm pretty sure that at this point, I have about a month of stuff to catch up on since it's been so long since I've blogged!

People who say that you have more free time in college are liars. Going to class, doing homework, working, and being in a few organizations on campus mean that I pretty much do not have a whole lot of free time left anymore.

Last week, I was so swamped that I went three whole days without checking Instagram, two days without reading any blog posts, and two days without signing onto Twitter. It's funny how when I write that down, it doesn't sound like a big deal, but seriously, when was the last time you were so busy that you didn't even want to spare a few minutes checking any social media?

All last week I kept telling myself that I just had to get to Monday. I had an exam on Monday after an insane weekend, so I figured I would finally be able to just relax the rest of this week.


That obviously didn't happen.

I have been more sleep deprived that I ever was in high school. I hate being up late, but I've been up past midnight every day this week.

But despite all of the craziness and the yawns (I'm pretty sure I've yawned more in the past week than I have in my entire life), I couldn't be happier with where I am in my life right now.

I keep reminding myself not to rush this or hope for days to end because I know that before I know it, all of this will be just a memory, and I'll be wishing for just a few more days in college.

I came into college with a lot of AP credits, and I was looking over my degree audit this afternoon. I realized how I could be done with college so fast if I wanted to. But I'm choosing to co-op and add a second major and maybe even a minor because I don't want to be in a rush to get out of here.

I want to savor every minute I have in college because just like high school, it's going to be gone before I know it.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

College Textbooks

If you're like me, you cringe every time you think of having to buy a textbook from the campus bookstore. Let's face it, buying textbooks is expensive, and most of the time you have a hard time selling it back to the bookstore (at least I did!).

You may remember back in July when I did a post on Campus Book Rentals (you can see that post here).

They contacted me again recently and asked if I would be willing to write another post for them, and I was more than happy to because they have saved me a lot of money, and they can save you money too!

Here a few of the benefits from renting your textbooks from Campus Book Rentals.....

You can save between 40-90% off campus bookstore prices.

They offer free shipping both ways.

They have flexible renting periods.

With every rental, they donate money to an organization called Operation Smile (you can learn more about what Operation Smile does here).

I wanted to talk a little bit about my experience with Campus Book Rentals. I used them both last semester and this semester and have been very pleased with them! For one, I saved a lot of money over purchasing the textbooks. The books arrived in really good condition. They send you packaging with prepaid postage so you can return them free of charge.

The free return shipping was one of my favorite things because it was SO easy. At the end of last semester, I just put the books in the sleeve they sent me and put the package in my mailbox. That was it!

I was also really happy with the flexibility. I rented a book last semester for a class that I didn't realize was a two semester class, and I still needed the book this semester. I was able to go on Campus Book Rental's website and chose the option to buy that book, and I only had to pay the difference between the cost and what I had already paid to rent it.

Here's a little video explaining how it all works!

They also have program called Rent Back where you can rent out a textbook that you own to other students. I haven't tried this out, but it seems like a good idea.

This is how they explain it on their website....

I have definitely been happy with using this company, and I hope you'll check them out next time you need textbooks!

This is a sponsored post, but all opinions expressed are my own.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Project 365: January 2014

First month of 2014's Project 365 is over, and it was yet another great month!

January 1 - Dinner at Sakura to kick start 2014!

January 2 - Snow days mean no work, not leaving the house, staying in my pajamas, cuddling with Coco, taking a pink bubble rose-scented bath, drinking hot chocolate, and watching movies.

January 3 - Highlight of the day.

January 4 - Swimsuits are officially out at Target despite it being absolutely freezing here :)

January 5 - Made some yummy Cake Batter Bars on this relaxing Sunday!

January 6 - Broke out of the house on this freezing cold snow day to get dinner and Starbucks. Priorities!

January 7 - Another cold day with no school!

January 8 - First day back to school calls for Chick-fil-a and my own private study room!

January 9 - Love her!

January 10 - Always so weird driving by here....

January 11 - UC wins!

January 12 - It was finally warm enough to go for a walk at the park this afternoon!

January 13 - Loving on my puppy after the first Monday of classes in a LONG time.

January 14 - So blessed to have been appointed to Director of Alumnae Relations and Assistant Treasurer for Kappa Delta tonight!

January 15 - A snowy view of the Nippert construction this Wednesday.

January 16 - Came home to find a Reese's Egg waiting for me :)

January 17 - Such a fun day: Krispy Kreme doughnuts, Rita's, and visiting Danielle at Clemson!

January 18 - Such a fantastic day! Rita's, walking on the beach, and exploring Charleston. It doesn't get much better than that, especially in January!

January 19 - Such a good day in Charleston! Lots of yummy food, walking, shopping, great weather, and ghost tour. Just about a perfect day!

January 20 - Saying a sad goodbye to Charleston....

January 21 - Harsh reality to come home to....

January 22 - First stomach bug sick day in 7 years :( Thankfully I got to relax all day with Coco!

January 23 - Time for bed....

January 24 - Dressed and ready with no plans, so I made a last minute trip out to Rookwood for some Yagoot and shopping!

January 25 - The cold couldn't keep me from having a fun family night at Sky Zone and Steak & Shake!

January 26 - .........

January 27 - Experiencing new cultures with a trip to Jungle Jim's with Courtney and Emily this afternoon!

January 28 - Too cold for school, but not too cold for a Kenwood shopping trip!

January 29 - Eating my lunch while overlooking the LCB courtyard!

January 30 - Tried seaweed today. One word: disgusting.

January 31 - Kicked off the weekend with some hot yoga and Yagoot with Courtney today!

Usually I tend to think that January is the longest month ever since usually there isn't a whole lot of fun things going on. This January wasn't like that! I got to go to South Carolina this month and due to the weather, I have pretty much never been in school - ha! That made January 2014 fly by.