Monday, September 14, 2015

Sunshine Book!

I wanted something that would have extra things in one place, so I made a binder and named it my sunshine book because it's full of happy stuff! 

There are 5 tabs:

This section is full of quotes that I think will be helpful when I'm out there! There's a mix of spiritual and personal, I also left empty pages so I can add more because I'm sure I will.

I printed an empty calendar template from! Then I added all the months and dates I'll be gone. I marked important dates, such as birthdays, holidays, and approximate milestones (1 year). Also in this section is a page for addresses and emails. The main purpose of this section is to keep up with home and not miss birthdays so I can write them a cards on time!

This section has a list of workouts for me so I can stay in shape! Theres also a list of healthy foods I like, in case I forget some (it happens) to make planning grocery lists easier! This is where I'll keep some easy recipes too. There are also blank pages so I can add workouts that I might pick up from companions!

I got two of these cool zipper sleeves for letters I need to respond to and letters I've already responded to, just to stay organized. Also this way I can keep all the cool letters I get in one place. This is where I'll keep envelopes and stamps as well.

Probably my favorite section, my pictures of my family and friends! It's in the back in hopes that I won't spend all my time looking at it...I just got a 10 pack of sleeve covers, and cut scrapbook paper the right size and placed pictures in there. It looks nice and it's very easy! I also left 7 pages with scrapbook paper empty so I can add pictures as I go, cause nieces and nephews grow fast! And updated pictures will be nice.

Also in the VERY back, I'm going to keep important documents and pre-made cards for birthdays, or thank you's, or whatever else I need them for!

Thanks for stopping by =)

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Sister Style

Growing up, my family would talk about sister missionary clothes with a bit of playful disgust. We used to joke about how my oldest sister dressed like a missionary, and my second oldest sister would talk about how hideous their shoes were and how they looked like frumpy cats with no taste or style. In fact, my family kind of joked that sister missionaries were missionaries only because they couldn't get married (it suddenly makes so much sense why I never wanted to go on a mission). But obviously sister missionaries aren't only missionaries because they can't get married or because they don't have career goals (however I coincidently fit both of those descriptions...), it seems like every day there are more and more bummed RM's who whine about "all the pretty girls going on missions" and they have to wait an extra 18 months before they can get hitched.
Anyways! With such strict rules, it may be intimidating to try to find attractive outfits that fit all the criteria. I know for most of my life, I thought it would be impossible to look good as a sister missionary, but I am determined to make it happen! And I believe I have succeeded because these outfits are pretty fantastic (if I say so myself). Luckily, past the knee full skirts seem to have made a come back in a vintage chic way this past year, and there are plenty of sister missionaries who have paved the way before us and made excellent blogs with wonderful advice on how NOT to look like pilgrim. So let's do this! Let's change the old ways and create a new stereotype! The stereotype of classy, beautiful, well dressed young ladies with fabulous shoes! (But let's not look too good, we ARE missionaries after all *wink wink*)

RULE #1: Make sure every piece you bring matches AT LEAST 3 other items!!! I read this somewhere and I think it is a good rule to follow, optimally all of your clothes will mix and match but that may not always be possible . . . (because maybe you like ALL shades of pink so you have a bunch of pink that doesn't match each other . . . oops.)

RULE #2: Don't sacrifice your natural style! In other words, don't get items just because they are available. Your clothes should match what you wear regularly, just mission-i-fied. It might take a little extra effort, but I think it's worth it!


#1: Modcloth Dark Blue Button Down Skirt
Why I love it: It has pockets and belt loops! Its a flowy comfy material, and machine washable! Buttons don't come undone, elastic in the back.
#2: Modcloth Gray Skirt.
Why I love it: Literally matches anything!! Just a little boring is all...

#3 Ann Taylor Tan Button Down
Why I love it: I love using nude as a neutral! This skirt is amazing, it is super silky soft, has awesome deep pockets, belt loops, and the buttons don't come undone so I don't need to worry about accidents. It feels heavy so I feel like it will be good in the winter, but at the same time it seems breathable enough for summer. Very modern style.
#4: Modcloth Mustard Yellow
Why I love it: Belt loops and pockets! The waist band is stretchy so I can shrink or grow. Also have this same skirt in cranberry.
#5: New York & Co Fuchsia 
$32 (with coupons)
Why I love it: POCKETS!!! And it's such a fun color and shape! Definitely one of my favorites, I love that even though it's bright and pops, I can still mix it with a lot of different styles and colors.
Fun Patterns!
#6: Lulu's Super Awesome Floral Skirt
Why I love it: It looks amazing! It has pockets hidden in there, fun to match it up, and a nice thick fabric.
#7: New York & Co Floral
$37 (with coupon)
Why I love it: Elastic and comfortable, kinda just a nice and easy skirt to wear. And it's pretty.
#8: The Loft Weird Triangle
$34 (with coupon)
Why I love it: Wild and fun! Love the draw string in case I gain or lose weight, very lightweight fabric will be great in summer!


Button Downs:

#1: Express Cranberry and Green 
Haha I think $40 each
Why I love it: Lightweight, not sheer like a lot of express stuff is. I like this shirt because it's fitted well, it's not too tight around my chest but it's not too loose everywhere else.
#2: Express Denim!

#3: H&M Butterflies!
Why I love it: Um...Butterflies! I honestly hate H&M and had low expectations going in, but this single shirt completely changed my mind. It's so cute, fits well, and it was a spectacular price!

#4: The Loft Pink (also in navy)
Why I love it: The Loft has the most comfortable things on this planet. This picture does not do this shirt justice in the slightest, it looks really good on and I wear about once a week, and it's an amazing, beautiful color!
#5: Ann Taylor Wait, Am I Wearing A Cloud? Shirt.
$14 (on sale)
 Why I love it: Softest shirt I have ever worn.
#6: Marshalls Stripe shirt!
Why I love it: Soft comfy and diverse! And stripes are just fun.

#1: Talbots Striped Navy Collared Sweater
Why I love it: My obsession with collared tops is probably a little unhealthy...and I looked everywhere and finally found one! So worth it! Good for chilly days that aren't completely freezing.
 #2: Talbots Gray Polka Dot Cardigan
$ 74
Why I love it: It's made with a super nice kind of wool that is extra soft! That's why it was a little pricy. But I love that it's fun! But still in neutral colors and easy to pair up.
 #3: The Loft Black Cardigan
$13! (on sale)
Why I love it: Just a nice light weight cardigan to go over anything! 

#1: Tan Crocs!
Why I love it: WATER PROOF!! And comfy, good quality. Crocs are cool cause you can wash them in the dishwasher and they are made with a special antibacterial material (or something along those lines) they also have good arch support! I looked into crocs after watching a prepare to serve video and 3 girls suggested them. And who knew they came in cute styles?? I like that they are simple and neutral. The only complaint I have is the weird squeaky sound they make when I walk...
 #2: Naot Kirei Navy Mary Janes
Why I love it: Is this the cutest shoe I will ever wear? No. But it might be the most comfortable. Nato's are hand sewn, fine leather shoes made in Israel. I bought these at a special shoe store and they sprayed them with water proof stuff for free! I love that they are dark blue because it's an easy neutral to work with. Hopefully, they will save my feet and knees from being eternally damaged. And I'm just really proud of myself for finding a fantastic walking shoe that isn't completely hideous. Learn more here.
 #3: Kelly and Katie White Flats
Why I love it: These are my cute shoes! They are comfy, but maybe not the most durable so I probably won't go tracting in these, but I like that they are white so I can wear them with pretty much anything! And they have a cute bow =)
#4: Pink Hunters!
Why I love it: Pink. Hunters. Shall I go on? Completely water proof and hand made, nice and durable. For those extra rainy days in Oregon!

Body by Victoria Demi Bra
$34 (with $10 off a bra coupon from mail, just sign up to their email list and they send them every month!)
Why I Am Absolutely In Love With Them: I got three of the same bra in three neutral colors (white, cream, nude). They are Victoria's Secret's Body by Victoria demi bra, and they are amazing! Seriously, it's like being hugged all day, by a soft teddy bear. If you are against Victoria's Secret for some reason (objectify women, too pricy, etc.) you may want to set those reasons aside just this one time for this one bra because IT IS THE BEST YOU WILL EVER FIND trust me I've looked, and this bra has never failed me in the last 2 years. Ask an employee to measure you and get the right size, don't guess because they have their own special little measuring system and fit makes a huge difference!

Watch them all come together! These are just a few of the outfits you can make with the featured items. Oh the possibilities! (Pardon my messy room...)

Thanks for stopping by =)

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Mission Call!

I was driving to my friends house on a late Saturday afternoon when my sister called me and told me my mission call had come in the mail. I almost turned around just to go hold it! But my brother and my mom were out of town that day, so we made plans to open it the next night. The time building up to it was surprisingly normal. People kept asking me if I was nervous, but I wasn't. They asked where I thought I'd go, but I had no idea! I knew where I wanted to go and I knew where I didn't want to go.
I really wanted to go to Australia. I really didn't want to go somewhere cold.

When my brother walked in the door that Sunday night, we instantly started calling all of my family members who weren't in Colorado and I got ready to open it! When I opened up my letter, I couldn't even read it! They weren't words to me, just blurry black marks on a white piece of paper. Then out of the haze I saw the word "Salem" and I freaked out! I honestly didn't have any idea where Salem was! Then I read the rest and it said "Oregon Salem Mission" everyone got excited and it was wonderful!
But later that night I started to feel inadequate almost, because it was a state-side mission. I started to wonder if I hadn't been called out of the country because I wasn't strong enough for it or something. It was all pretty depressing. But it didn't last long. I posted where I was going on Facebook and I got a wave of overwhelming support from family, friends, and people I'm not even sure I know! Members and non-members. And I realized it didn't matter where I went, because wherever I go there will be people to teach, and the people are what's really important! Every single day Oregon seems like the absolute best place for me to go! Everyday I get more excited about it! I know that God knows me so well and he knew that this is where I need to be, and I just want to go wherever he wants me to go because I know he'll never let me down.
I know that all mission calls are from God. Elder Rasband gave a beautiful talk about how all mission calls are divine. If you aren't so sure, I would encourage you to read the link ; )

Besides, it will probably be better to go to Australia when I can go to the beach and all. Maybe one day...

Friday, July 24, 2015

A Year Ago. . .

A year ago, if you would have told me I'd be getting ready to serve an LDS mission in 2015, I would have called you crazy. Yet here I am, my papers went in last week, and I'm getting ready for a mission! And it's pretty crazy!
Because a year ago I was wearing shorts that barely covered my butt. My motto when getting dressed was "the less you wear the better!". My job at starbucks made drinking coffee extremely easy and I did it everyday without shame. I was dating a guy and it was not the healthiest relationship. And I certainly was not doing the basic things every diligent LDS member does: read the scriptures, pray, and go to church. My life was a confusing mess of sneaking out, dancing around, being as naked as socially acceptable, and ending up alone wondering why I wasn't happy. I felt like I should be happy because of all the fun I was having, but the happiness was fleeting and didn't stick around.
I knew I wanted to change, but I didn't know how. Or rather, I ignored how.

I've always believed in angels, and I believe people come into our lives for a reason. And I believe that the summer of 2014 God sent me an angel. . . In the form of the most beautiful boy ever.
His name was Stephen. We met at church, in the beginning I didn't think he was very attractive or anything. I first noticed him when he was giving a talk in sacrement meeting and I don't remember a single thing he said, but I remember sitting there and thinking "Wow. His parents must be so proud of him". We became friends, I could tell he liked me and I liked the attention and making the guy I was dating jealous ("not the healthiest relationship") and eventually I started to actually like Stephen. He was fun, good, and he accepted me exactly the way I was, even with all of my flaws. The more time I spent with him the more I liked him, and that grew into love. He never once told me I should change, but he sure made me want to change! I knew that if I ever wanted to deserve someone as wonderful as Stephen, change was necessary. And so, I changed.
I broke up with the guy I was dating, I stopped drinking coffee, I started to take church seriously, I started to pray, and I started the repentance process. Changing was actually pretty easy, all I had to do was decide to change. And I was happy! Insanely happy.

In January I started reading the book of mormon, and Nephi is always saying how he will go and do whatever the Lord commands. As I was reading I kept feeling like I should go on a mission, but I ignored it. Until one night it was too much to ignore. I snapped my scriptures shut and looked at the picture of Jesus on my desk and said out loud "can you stop?!" (don't worry I was the only one home) and then I started crying and begging to do anything but go on a mission, I'd even get married! Then I had a thought that just came to my mind, it was "you don't have to be perfect, you just have to try". And it was clear to me what I needed to do, so I changed my prayer and I asked to be able to have a desire to go on a mission. And miraculously, it happened!
I want to go on a mission so bad now! It's the thing that makes the most sense to me and for once in my life I feel like I'm doing what I need to do without question. But I'm also scared beyond reason. Sometimes I feel like it was all some sort of mistake, because I feel like I am the most unqualified person to be teaching others the gospel. For most of my life I've been this weird half mormon, I didn't do personal progress, I didn't go to seminary, I didn't really pay attention in church, and I just finished the book of mormon all the way through for the first time a week ago! But I suppose if I've learned anything, it's that it's never too late to change.
A year ago, the idea of going on a mission seemed impossible. Now my personal mission is to make it possible.