January is an odd month for me:  in some aspects it seems to have flown by, and in others it seems to have lasted an eternity.  The most gratifying thing I've accomplished this month is actually a group of things;  I've managed to stick to almost all of my resolutions, which is a new feat for me.  If that's another indicator for the rest of the year, I guess I'm in good shape.  How are you doing on your resolutions?

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1. All the Light We Cannot See:  This book definitely deserves every award it has received.  I'm being completely sincere when I say that I've never read a book like it, and I'll probably never read something similar to it ever again.  The writing is gorgeously detailed, and the plot isn't too sloppy either.  Be warned:  the ending is absolutely shocking.

2. Boyfriend Tees:  I've gotten better about embracing the casual chic style that has been all the rage lately, although there are still parts of it that I'm not overly fond of . However, one item I've come to love is a boyfriend tee, which is basically a dressy alternative to a t-shirt.  They are extremely versatile pieces that can be worn with any outfit, during any season, with any accessories.

BEING A PREP FOR A WEEK: 1/24/16 -- 1/30/16

This week kept me playing catch-up:  catching up on schoolwork, catching up on sleep, and catching up on adjusting to the new weather change.  And boy, it was a change; last week I was wearing fleece pullovers and now I'm back to wearing light jackets.  I'm also trying to balance some blog maintenance and much-needed exercise with college prep. As you might have guessed, I'm happiest when I'm busiest.

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Now, on to some of my favorite links from the past week:
Barbie has finally come out with a new line of "realistic" dolls with different body types and sizes--what do you think about the company's decision?
Check out the gorgeous color of this boyfriend tee!


In a world where blogging is rampant and bloggers are landing on national television, fashion blogging has become an enterprise.  In fact, the majority of "famous" bloggers specialize in fashion.  I love looking at fashion posts for inspiration, but there are a few not-so-lovely aspects about the new world of fashion blogging that decrease its glamorous appearance.

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1. The Staging
Almost all bloggers (including yours truly) stage their photos to make them more visually appealing to an audience.  However, there's a fine line between staging and completely reinventing;  if you've ever seen a blog photo that looked so meticulously edited and organized that it seemed unreal, it probably was. There's nothing wrong with wanting to produce beautiful photos, but it's important to figure reality into the picture.

BEING A PREP FOR A WEEK: 1/17/16 -- 1/23/16

I guess Mother Nature has been listening to my complaints, because winter weather has moved into the South.  That's right:  snow is in the South!  It's a little odd that we get so excited about snow, but since that natural phenomenon only occurs a few times a year here, we use any excuse to celebrate it.  In fact, my family is planning a bit of an outdoor excursion some time in the near future--but first, breakfast and blogging are in order!

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Now, on to some of my favorite links from the past week:
This teacher's parody of Adele's hit song is hilarious (and she's a lovely singer)...
Breathtaking artist tributes in memory of Alan Rickman.


Over the long weekend I had some extra time to peruse online;  the end result of my web browsing was a list of lovely items that I'll be adding to my next birthday list (unfortunately, I have a summer birthday).  I noticed a few trends that I gravitated towards, such as bright winter whites and statement earrings.  I absolutely love the color combination on this J Crew sweater, and the style of this high-necked blouse is very elegant.  On the jewelry side of things, I adore these gray tassel earrings, and the history nerd inside of me cannot help admiring these "Tudor" drop earrings.

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BEING A PREP FOR A WEEK: 1/10/16 -- 1/16/16

Another lovely week has passed by, and I still find myself waiting for snow flurries.  Is anyone else longing for snow?  My week was fairly uneventful (surprise surprise), but school has kept me bustling along the academic trail;  my planner has been an absolute blessing.  I'm still desperately trying to adhere to my 2016 resolutions, but it's proved harder than I thought.  In short, January's going along just swimmingly!

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Now, on to some of my favorite links from the past week:
If you're in need of a smile, check out this corgi's Instagram account.
The new Harry Potter coloring book--for adults!


I've yet to meet a person who was adverse to the idea of pretty stationery, journals, and planners.  If there's one good thing about this generation, it's its love of office supplies.

One of my favorite paper brands is Sugar Paper LA, and I love it because it's helping me start off 2016 on the right foot.  I finally switched from my old school brand planner to one that suited me better;  while I was at it, I also decided to purchase a calendar for miscellaneous dates. Guess what brand both of these are from?  I'm thrilled with these purchases, especially my planner.  Its design is simple yet stylish, and it has so much room to write things down (twelve lines per day)!  The calendar maintains that simply sophisticated yet functional look.  When I say I'm thrilled, I'm not exaggerating!

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Planner -- Calendar

BEING A PREP FOR A WEEK: 1/3/16 -- 1/9/16

If this week is foreshadowing the rest of the year, I think 2016 is going to be a good year.  I'm back in the school routine at last, and standardized tests are looming nearer. As an added bonus, Alabama has finally decided to embrace cold temperatures with open arms.  Winter is here at last!

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Now, on to some of my favorite links from the past week:
An interesting set of facts about the Mountain of the Butterflies to commemorate the 41st anniversary of its discovery...
The app that I cannot wait to use for college applications!


I gain a huge portion of my inspiration from quotes, but I also seek inspiration in people, especially other bloggers.  One of the first bloggers I ever started following was Shannon from Prep Avenue;  her sweet personality and whimsical site were, and still are, a lovely pick-me-up.

Shannon attends Furman University, but she hasn't been limited to a Southern campus.  She's interned in Paris (what a dream), and she just returned from a semester abroad in Italy, complete with weekend trips to surrounding European countries.  She's definitely designing a life she loves, and I'm here to share some of her insight and experience.
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What inspired you to become a blogger?
I knew it was something I always wanted to do.  I loved reading other blogs and needed something creative to do in my free time!  I was a senior in high school and going through the college application process while still getting used to a new school. Blogging was the perfect way to escape!

What is the most important lesson that you've learned about blogging?
Hmmm, that's a good one!  I've learned so much about myself through the process, but I think one of the most important lessons I've learned is how dangerous it can be to compare yourself.  It's easy to compare number of followers, page views, comments, etc. But when it comes down to it, I blog because it's something I really enjoy doing. Nothing ever good comes from comparing yourself to others!

BEING A PREP FOR A WEEK: 12/27/15 -- 1/2/16

Typing out "2016" is a strange new quirk I'll have to get used to.  I was still writing December dates as if they had taken place in November, so I guess it really was time that I broke down and purchased my own calendar.  My last full week of break has been spent researching, reading, and blogging (I won't mention eating because that's a given).

If you notice any little facets of the site that have been moved or improved, now you know why:  if I'm given too much time, I'll start redesigning everything in sight.  Aside that, I was blessed with a wonderful holiday season, and now I have a list of resolutions to tackle--I hope the same can be said for you!

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Now, on to some of my favorite links from the past week:
The modern-day Audrey Hepburn blog:  Kelly Golightly!
My new planner for a new year (think gold and polka dots)...