Meeting Anna: The Bananna Diaries

Hey everyone! So today I am changing things up a little bit!

This post is a post written by my new sweet blogger friend Anna! She is such a kind soul who also has the world in common with me, which I am so thankful for! She has such a wonderful outlook on life as well as wanting to make a difference!

I remember being so worried when I first started my blog, wondering if anyone would understand this passion of mine. And now I have made a fantastic friend, and I cannot wait for more collaborations with her to come!

Thanks Anna and I hope all of you enjoy her post just as much as I do!

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“How to Make the Most of Each and Every Day

Life is weird. I was in elementary school not too long ago, and last summer happened like… two months ago, right?

Lol jk.

Elementary school was ~15 years ago (what?) and another summer is yet again upon us.

Some days I feel like time is slipping through my fingers. You know, like, the weekends when you actually want time to slow down. Other days ~when I’m working~ the hours seem to drag, especially if it’s not busy at my job.

I had a college professor who once said something that really stuck with me. As if recounting his own life, he said, you’ll blink once, and you’ll be married. You’ll blink again, and your kids will be going to school. You’ll blink again, and they’ll be moving out and starting their own families. You’ll blink again, and you’ll be a grandparent.

Slightly intimidating? I’d say so. A bunch of highlights spanning a lifetime dramatically condensed into ten seconds. Though he used a gross exaggeration, I think my professor demonstrated a good point through his brief, yet striking description of time.

LIFE IS LITERALLY TOO SHORT TO NOT BE HAPPY. (Sorry for the caps lock, just playin’ around with dramatic effects here.)

But let us not make the passage of time our enemy. I know I once did. Instead let us savor it, cherish it, and enjoy it the best we can. What my professor has made me realize is that we need to make the most of each and every day that is graciously given to us by God. Life is sprinkled with many beautiful, joyous, and awe-inspiring moments. Yet, somewhere in between those moments we find ourselves complacent with the daily grind of life. However, strangely enough I have come to look forward to the “day to day”.  And I have learned that it can be so much more than the cliché eat-sleep-work/study-repeat routine.

SOOO…here is a lil’ list of things that have helped me feel more fulfilled on the daily 🙂

  1. Make time for God everyday in prayer and reading His word. This has added a lot of meaning not only to each day, but to my life as a whole. (Side note: There’s an AWESOME app out there that has both encouraged me to read Scripture, and helped me to better understand it. It’s called She Reads Truth and it’s free on the app store!!)
  1. Make the effort to spend less time on social media. I get it. We all love Instagram and snapchat and twitter and whatever else there is. But social media is honestly the biggest robber of my time. I wake up and mindlessly scroll through Instagram before getting on with my day. At night, I do the same. Not gonna lie, I really think it’s messed with my ability to fall asleep. From what I hear, Apple is coming out with a new feature to monitor/lessen your screen time. Will defff be giving that a go.
  1. Each day make time to ~HAVE FUN~ that, in my humble opinion, should not include TV or internet. In addition to watching the next episode of your fav show on Netflix, allot half an hour to play with your dog, cat, hedgehog or whatever else you may have. Animals exude such positive energy and really have the ability to put a smile on your face and add a lightness to your heart. If you’re allergic to pets, spend that time playing an old board game with your brother before he moves out to college. Or your grandpa or your mom. Go for a scenic run. Or stay home and try to learn an instrument. You won’t be sorry you did.
  1. So I know we’re not all morning people. Some of us are night owls and like to stay up until 2 in the morning and sleep ‘till noon while others get up at the crack of dawn. I was always somewhere in between. I like love my sleep. And I need at least 8-9 hours to feel good the next day. (Aka if I get less than that I will be tired AF or have a headache.) I have found that going to bed an hour or two earlier will allow me to wake up earlier and, in so, give me more time in the morning. If I sleep ‘till 11 or 12, I feel like half my day is shot. When I get out of bed at 8, I feel like I can conquer the world hahaha. So much more room time for activities!!!
  1. Probably the most important thing on this list and I’m saving it for last 😉 Keep a gratitude list or journal. Be it on physical paper or simply in your head, it is IMPERATIVE you count your blessings on the daily and thank the Father for the things that you may not have been given if you were born a different human.

Welp! That’s all for now! I hope you enjoyed this post and feel free to check out my blog at ;)”

Like she said, you all should go check out her blog for more awesome posts like this one! Anna is such a sweet soul, and I am so thankful to have made such a PATIENT (Thank you Anna! *insert monkey emoji here!* LOL!) and talented new friend!

Go check her blog out by clicking the link below!

I hope you all loved it and I will talk to you in my next post! 🙂

My 5 Reasons Why

Hey everyone!

I am so excited to finally be posting this, as it is an awesome topic that I have been collaborating with my friend Anna on!

Anna is such a sweet and kind soul and I am very happy to have made such an awesome friend in the blogging community that I share so much in common with!

Today I wanted to talk about my 5 reasons why, and how everyone has 5 reasons why. It might not be the most obvious of things, but they are the reasons we keep going. Your reasons why are the things that keep you motivated as well as the things that keep you going and looking forward!

So here are my 5 reasons why! I hope you all enjoy!

  1. God

My first reason why is definitely God. I would not be where I am today or who I am today without my faith! By trusting in God and his plan for me It has allowed and helped me to reach this sort of almost relaxation. I know that might sound weird to some people but my faith in God has taught me to trust and that in the end everything will be alright. It has brought this wonderful peace to my life I would not have been able to achieve by myself! Knowing that he has a plan for me in this life to potentially make the lives of those around me better brings a motivation that I have never felt before! God is definitely my first reason why! Why to keep going, why to trust and why to believe.

  1. My Husband.

My second reason why is my amazing and wonderful husband! I am so thankful to have my husband be my best friend. He is the most incredible human being I have ever met in my entire life! He is kind, intelligent, hilarious, and the most hardworking person you will ever meet! When it comes to me doing the absolute best I can, I find myself always wanting to do the best I can by him. Not as if I am trying to impress him or anything like that. It is the fact that I love him so much, and I want to have the best life together that is possible! And in a marriage, it isn’t about giving 50/50 in my opinion. It is about giving 100/100. It is giving the absolute best that you can for each other as much as you possibly can. And some days one of you will have an off day, and may need to give more than the other, but that is the joy of loving each other so much. That when you do, it’s not a chore to give more love. It is a blessing! My husband keeps me motivated. He keeps me looking in a positive direction and encourages me! He reminds me that this life is a beautiful gift, and we can’t waste it.

  1. My Daughter.

I am not going to lie, even just thinking about what I am about to write is bringing tears to my eyes. My daughter is the best creation I have ever made. She is, well she is everything. She is my whole world. And I am so thankful to have such a beautiful little blessing in my life. I remember being a teenager and knowing that my calling in life was to be a mother. I never really said anything to a lot of people for the fear of being made fun of or being looked at as “lazy” or as if I had no real aspirations. But now that I am a mother, I know that being a mother is the hardest, most beautiful job I will ever do in my entire life. It brings a purpose to my life I have never experienced before. I am responsible for this beautiful little life. It is my job to help this little human grow into a kind, hardworking, and respectful human being. It is a huge job that scares many people. And somedays, it is hard. Some days I get tired, or some days everything just seems to be an absolute mess that I will never get to! But every time I look into those sweet, beautiful eyes, something inside of me sparks. Even when I feel as low as I could ever feel, when I feel like a bad mom, or like I am unfit for the job the Lord has selected for me, that little face keeps me going. And it brings me a strength I have never experienced before!

  1. My Family!

My next reason why is kind of a giant reason consisting of many little reasons! I was lucky to be raised in a family where family means everything! They will always be there for you, during the best and worst times. And they have proven time and time again that this will always be the case. My parents, siblings, grandparents, and doggies (Yes, doggies!) have always been there to carry me when the world feels too heavy on my shoulders! Family isn’t only by blood though. Sometimes family is the group of people you surround yourself with, the people you would do anything for; the people you love, sometimes even more than yourself. They are the people I have always wanted to make proud of me. They are the ones who have always encouraged my journeys, pointed out my talents, and loved me, even when I’ve made a mistake!

5. Me!

By me, I mean myself back when I was young. I keep going and pushing towards my goals because I owe it to that little girl who had a million dreams of what she would someday be. I owe it to that little girl who sang to everyone and wasn’t scared to be heard. To the little girl who loved walking around in little plastic high heels and carried a composition notebook everywhere with her so she could write down any story ideas she may have had. We all go through periods in our life where we lose the child-like innocence and beliefs that we really can do anything we want to! And nothing seems more impossible than getting back to that place in our lives. But something that has always kept me going is that little girl. I remember her and all the things she wanted to accomplish. All of the things that she told herself over and over again to encourage herself that she could do every single thing she always planned on doing. I owe it to that little girl to keep up with my dreams, and keep going after them as if I was six years old again. And I do not plan on disappointing her.

I hope you all enjoyed this post, and I hope it encourages you to find your 5 reasons why!

Thank you, guys, and I will talk to you in my next post!

Also thank you to Anna for this fun and encouraging collaboration!

5 Things That Helped Me Become a More Positive Person

Hi Everyone!!

I hope everyone had an enjoyable week!

I have been wanting to write about this since I began my blog because I feel so strongly about this topic. Being a positive person has always been a struggle for me. It has always been easy for me to fall into a pit of worry, sadness, and all around negativity.  I feel that many of us face this challenge on a daily basis.

I have been one of those people where if someone says something rude, if something doesn’t go according to plan, or if I feel as if I have failed in some way, it will wreck my day. I keep going back to those “failures”, so much so that even when I experience success, they are always shadowed by what I see as my flaws.

Luckily, I have been trying out a few things that I feel have really helped me in concentrating on the good vs. the bad!

So here are 5 things that have helped me become a more positive person!

  1. Make a conscious decision to start every day brand new. 
    • This one is probably the most difficult for me than the rest of the things I will mention. Making a decision to be positive is easier said than done, but I feel that once you decide to be positive in the little moments, it really does add up to a more positive outlook on life!
    • When I wake up in the morning, I try to tell myself the same thing every single time, whether it is the moment I open my eyes or later when I am drinking my coffee. That today is a new day, and as long as I do the best I can, it will be a good day! The way I see it is that sure I might have said the wrong things, or not have had time to do the dishes the day before, but that is OK! As long as I make an attempt to be kind, intentional, and happy, then that is all that really matters. As long as I am doing my absolute best in everything I do, then I feel like that is a job well done!
  2. Pause!
    • I am a serial worrier (especially about the little things!). For some reason, I think that if something is not done or said right away, then the world will end at that very moment! I don’t understand why I have this need to have everything figured out as soon as possible, but if it is not, I begin to think of the worst outcomes! “This person will hate me forever if I don’t give them an answer or if I say no.” “My whole family is going to starve because I didn’t have time to make dinner and now everyone is home.” “I haven’t gotten a chance to put the laundry away and now someone is on their way over and they are going to judge me and my home, and then tell everyone!” Obviously, none of those things are going to be the reality of the situation, so I have tried to train my brain to understand the benefits of just pressing the pause button.
    • Breathe! Whatever the worst outcome is in this situation, it is fixable! I can put the laundry away later. That person won’t hate me (even if they are upset, they will get over it). If they judge, that is not on me. Who cares?
  3. Understand what you want and communicate that to others. 
    • As I started to really concentrate on studying why I had a negative mindset, I realized that I had the tendency to not share what I wanted with the people around me. I was so afraid of confrontation that I was sacrificing my own wants and needs for others wants, which had caused me to basically put myself in a bubble in the back of my mind.
    • What I started to do when I was in a situation where I was faced with a decision I had to make, I would ask myself “What do I want?” And then I would think of a respectful way to convey that want to others. And what do you know, it actually worked! I made a decision that made me happy, and helped others understand! Whoa!
  4. Choosing a healthier lifestyle!
    • I never would have guessed that choosing to become healthier would have aided in my positivity, but it definitely did! This one is very simple!
    • The healthier I ate, and the more active I became, my body was suddenly calm and positive. Treat your body with kindness! It really will benefit you in the end!
  5. Surrounding yourself with positive people. 
    • The saying that you become who you surround yourself with is very true! I noticed that when I was with people who constantly complained, or had a more negative outlook on life, the sadder and more negative I became. And the other way around, the more I surrounded myself around people who were more positive and happier in general, the happier I became. I started to tell myself how awesome simple things were. I began noticing small acts of kindness I had always overlooked. And when someone did treat me disrespectfully, I had finally learned to brush it off. Because the only thing I can change is myself and how I react to certain things. You can’t be everybody’s cup of tea.
    • Find friends who share your interests! Make it a point to see them somewhat often. Lift others up! Offer to help even if you get nothing in return. These small actions really do make the biggest differences!

For me, being positive is still a daily mission. Some days are harder than others, but that is OK! Because I am human, and one mistake will not be the end of the world!

I hope this post helps if you are also someone who has struggled/struggles with leading a happier life!

Comment down below if any of these things may have worked for you!

I hope everyone has an awesome weekend and I will talk to you in my next post!!

The Casual Mom Lookbook

Hey Everyone! I hope that everyone is having a happy week!

So I am going to dive straight into it. Trying to look stylish while feeling comfortable, most of the time, seems completely undoable. I have a nine month old little one, and as much as I want to spend two and a half hours getting ready, I can’t.

So I have learned how to plan a few simple outfits that are now my go to’s that are super comfy, nursing friendly (YAY!) and super cute!

My first outfit is a plain black bodysuit with a pair of light washed boyfriend jeans and my black suede mules. I really love this outfit because it plays around with basics and ends up looking young and modern. I love the scoop neck of the body suit, and the contrast of the outfit as a whole. This is really easy to throw together, and ends up looking like I actually tried to get ready! Woo hoo!

These next two outfit ideas are a more dressed up option. I personally like wearing them to church or a family get-together! Both are again paired with the scoop-neck black body suit with 3/4 sleeve, and my black mules. The first outfit ends with my black and white striped A-Line skirt with (functional) buttons down the middle. I absolutely love this skirt in that it is not see through, is well made, and very flattering. It creates the appearance of a narrow waist and broader hips due to the stripe details. This also helps lengthen the lower body (which helps me look taller. Again, Woo Hoo!).

The second outfit I am wearing is a denim dress with (functional) buttons running down the middle. I am so impressed with the quality of this dress. Sometimes denim clothing items can be made to look cute, but feel cheap, and fall apart quick. This dress is NOT like that at all. It is so comfortable while still feeling sturdy. I think that this dress is so cute and I love how nursing friendly it is!

I think that both this skirt and dress are so unique, and they will continue to be staples in my closet!

My last outfit is definitely one of my favorites. Ever since the off the shoulder trend came out, I can not get enough! With this outfit I am wearing a white and blue pinstriped off the shoulder blouse with 3/4 sleeves with a tie detailing. I paired those with my darker washed skinny jeans and my brown sandals. I have had the sandals for a few years now, and they do not disappoint. They are super casual and easy to pair with any outfit, but still comfortable and lightweight. They are perfect for the coming warmer months! I love the color of this top since it is light enough to be more of a basic piece but trendy enough to be the highlight of this outfit. This is my favorite spring outfit this season!

I hope you all enjoyed my casual lookbook, and I will talk to you all in my next post!

My Daily Skin Care Routine

Happy Tuesday everyone!! During the past couple of years as I have gone through my first pregnancy and the beginning stages of motherhood, and my skin has changed completely from what it used to be. With all of the changes to my skin, I have had to develop not only a NEW skincare routine entirely, but also a skincare routine that I really do have to stick to religiously (as I never really had a routine set in stone).

I used to have normal-to-oily, non-sensitive skin, whereas now I have super dry skin that is sensitive to products I didn’t realize you could even be sensitive to!

I have always been interested in skin care and taking care of my skin in healthy and natural ways. I love making homemade masks and scrubs, trying new products, and letting my skin get the TLC it deserves!

So now as my skin has been changing I have been trying to find products that work to cleanse and moisturize my skin.

As of right now I have found a few products that have been helping my skin feel great and look good too!

Starting off with cleansing my skin, I like to go back-and-forth with these two products.

A.M. :

  • I like to start off by cleansing my face with the Aveeno Clear Complexion foaming cleanser. I feel like it really cleans my face and gets all of the toxins and dirt off of my face. (I also like to use this in order to remove my makeup.)

P.M. :

  • I like to use the Pond’s Cold Cream cleanser at night, usually with my Mia Clarisonic, in order to not only cleanse my skin, but also give me that extra hydration I need during the night.

As for exfoliating the skin, I like using the St. Ives Nourished & Smooth Oatmeal scrub and mask. I will usually use this between 1-3 times a week based on how my skin is feeling over a certain amount of time. I really enjoy using it as a mask. I feel like I am pampering my skin with a fancy, hydrating mask when really is it around 4 dollars!


Next: Moisturizing!

My skin this winter reached new levels of dryness I had no idea could be could be attained. So giving my skin the hydration it needs is an absolute necessity.

A.M. :

  • During the morning after I cleanse with my Aveeno face wash, I like to go in with the Pond’s Clarant B3 Dark Spot Correcting Cream. I do not particularly have any issues with dark spots, but I have been experiencing uneven skin tone, and this product is already working wonders!
  • After that I like to finish off with a light layer of the Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. This is a light lotion that really does help retain moisture in my skin throughout the day. It is also a perfect body lotion in general!

P.M. :

  • At night after I finish up with my cream cleanser, I like to go over with a light layer of the Pond’s Clarant B3 Cream again. I apply it to my cheeks, chin and neck. (I try to avoid putting too many products on my forehead.) I skip the Aveeno moisturizer, and instead go over my face with the Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater.

This spray gives a nice burst of moisture without being greasy or overbearing. It is just enough of a fine mist to melt into your skin and giving enough hydration to last throughout the night. (I also like to use this instead of Mac Fix Plus with my makeup!)

I am still looking for a serum to start using (preferably one with Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid), so if you have any suggestions, I would love for you to comment down below!

So, there it is! My daily skincare routine (as of right now at least!).

I hope you all enjoyed it, and I will talk to you all in my next post!