A Night Out on SoCo

I had some friends come in town this weekend, so I decided that we should spend the evening exploring the South Congress district! I had heard a lot about SoCo but never actually been, so I figured this was the perfect opportunity.

We started out the night at Home Slice Pizza. The NY style pizza was just what I needed to get the evening started, it was quick, and really good, too!

After dinner, we decided to start wandering around and explore a little bit. SoCo is a super funky district with a lot of interesting stores, so I really liked seeing all of what the boutiques had to offer. My favorite part was probably this sign I found outside one of the stores we went into. (Sorry, Hannah B!)

As we continued exploring and window shopping, we found the flagship Kendra Scott store! I didn’t want to submit my two guy friends to the torture of watching me browse an expensive jewelry store, so I didn’t go inside. But now that I know where it is, I’ll definitely be coming back!

Despite being around 8 p.m., it was still sweltering hot. When I found a little food truck that sold ice cream pops, I bought one ASAP. I had to eat it real quick before it melted, but luckily the hot weather put me in the mood and I didn’t mind the brain freeze. (Side note: I think that was my first time trying strawberry ice cream, and it was really good!)

We finished up the night at Güero’s Taco Bar. Since I paid for parking, I got each of the boys to buy me a drink (I definitely profited, I think.) I’m a sucker for a frozen margarita (or really, frozen alcoholic beverages in general) so I really enjoyed these! There was fun live music for us to listen to as we sat out on the back patio.

Such a fun night! I’ll definitely be coming back to browse more stores and do a little more than just window shopping. Can’t wait to keep exploring more fun neighborhoods in Austin this summer!

-K

P.S. Like my #OOTD? You can find the details here!

My 2019-2020 Lilly Pulitzer Agenda

If you know me IRL, then you probably know all about my obsession with agendas, specifically the Lilly Pulitzer ones. I’ve been an avid agenda user since third grade, when Frisco ISD gave out free ones to all the students to use. Eventually, Frisco ISD stopped handing out free agendas, but my love for organization remained. I meandered through a few different agenda styles throughout the years before eventually landing on the Lilly Pulitzer ones.

I had been a Lilly fan for a little while, but hadn’t actually owned a Lilly agenda until my senior year of high school. I loved the bright colors and watercolor aesthetic that each agenda page had. I soon took my agenda game to the next level, and started using colored pens to further organize my life. As someone tackling their senior year of high school and about to embark on their freshman year of college, color coding was a game changer.

Lilly agendas have served me extremely well throughout my entire college career. I considered switching to another agenda brand this year for my senior year, but just couldn’t bring myself to do it. I’m so used to the Lilly layout and structure and don’t want to risk throwing myself off for my fourth year of college.

Senior year of high school, and freshman/sophomore years of college
Junior and senior years of college

This is my fifth Lilly agenda now, so I’ve accumulated quite a collection! I don’t have them all with me in Austin right now, but luckily I had a picture of the first three still on my phone so you can see the evolution through the years.

I can’t wait to start putting information in and getting my agenda ready for the 2019-2020 school year! For me, getting a new agenda is basically like Christmas and is one of my favorite days of the year.

This year, I chose the large agenda in the print multi flordita.

-K

The Buc-ee’s Experience

If you’ve ever driven on a Texas highway for an extended period of time, you’ve probably seen a billboard for Buc-ee’s. This gas station chain is all over Texas, and has even started expanding into other states. But I almost feel bad for calling Buc-ee’s a gas station. It’s even too nice to just be called a rest stop. Buc-ee’s is truly an experience.

When you walk up to a Buc-ee’s for a first time, you may initially wonder where am I? What have I just stumbled upon? Is this a gas station, or a Walmart? It’s easy to go into a state of shock just rolling up to Buc-ee’s, but the sense of amazement probably won’t go away when you walk inside.

Just inside Buc-ee’s doors, you’re greeted with a huge table with the latest Buc-ee’s gear, usually themed to match an upcoming holiday. Buc-ee’s has somewhat of a cult following, and some superfans even make it a point to grab a new shirt with Buc-ee the Beaver‘s face on it every time they come.

Past the entrance and heaps of Buc-ee’s t-shirts, you’ll find their hot food stations. Buc-ee’s specializes in BBQ, but also has a bakery and serves things like kolaches as well. If you have a sweet tooth, make sure to pick up some of their homemade fudge or cake balls while you’re here.

For being a rest stop, Buc-ee’s is actually a great place to shop for gifts, especially during the holiday season. If you have a Buc-ee’s enthusaist on your shopping list, there’s things like Buc-ee’s plush toys, towels, magnets, blankets, bottle openers, and more. For more more casual Buc-ee’s fans, you can find something in their home goods department, instead.

(Fun fact: The Pride of Oklahoma visited a Buc-ee’s on the way to the Sugar Bowl back in 2016. On the stop during the return trip, we were scolded over the intercom for turning all of the Texas Longhorns items upside down, and were asked not to do that again. We did anyways.)

Buc-ee’s has a huge selection of candy and snacks to choose from, if you pulled up with a sweet tooth. From their own brand of candies, to commonplace brands, they’re sure to have whatever goodie you’re looking for.

I love Buc-ee’s and look forward to stopping whenever I travel through Texas. My personal favorite snacks to cop are a cherry ICEE and some glazed almonds, but I like trying new things, too. They have such a great selection that those with an adventurous palate could probably try something new every time you stopped and never repeat a snack!

-K

A Surprise Visitor

This weekend, my mom and sister came down to Austin to visit me for the long weekend! It had only been a week since I had seen them (and I’ll be seeing them next weekend, too,) but they wanted to come see me, and who am I to say no? I was expecting just my mom and Macy, but when I came down to the kitchen I was delighted to find out they brought my dog Chloe, too!

With a puppy in tow, we had to go to lunch somewhere that was dog-friendly. After some light research, we decided on Abel’s on the Lake, a restaurant on the banks of Lake Austin. The view and the food was great, and we had a great time (even Chloe, who is notoriously scared of new places and new people.)

We still had some free time in Austin before Macy and my mom had to head back to Frisco, so we decided to do some exploring and see some of the more iconic Austin photography sites! I’m hoping to do a compilation post of Austin’s most recognizable murals during my time here, so I’m really glad we were able to find this one while we were out.

It was scorching hot outside, so we didn’t stay out long. Macy, my mom, and Chloe all came up to my room with me to come see my new space. Chloe loved running around all the extra space and didn’t chew anything up (we were so proud!) To cool off, we played a few rounds of card games and BINGO before they had to hit the road.

I’m so glad they were able to come see me this weekend! I’ll be back in Frisco for a visit soon, but I appreciate the 8 hours of driving they did to come see me just for an afternoon. I anticipate more visitors over the course of the summer, and I’m looking forward to showing them more Austin sights as I make this city my own!

-K

My Trader Joe’s Favorites

Do you have a Trader Joe’s near your house? If not, you’re seriously missing out- just like I was before I moved to Austin for the summer! Trader Joe’s is a grocery store that carries their own brand of products almost exclusively. I was wondering what all the hype was about, but after a few visits since I moved in down the street, I’m definitely hooked! After a few visits, here are my first impressions and initial favorites from TJ’s.

When you walk in TJ’s, the first thing you see are tons of fresh flowers. There’s a ton of variety and they’re all so fresh and vibrant that it puts me in a great mood before I’ve even made it to the grocery section! I bought a succulent on my last trip, and it’s super adorable. If I can get my hands on a vase, I might start buying some of the fresh flowers to keep in my room, too.

Once you’re past the flower garden at the front entrance, it’s right into the produce. It’s all super reasonably priced, and just seeing all the variety makes me want to try new things. My favorite is the bananas (one of my favorite fruits!)

If you know only one thing about Trader Joe’s, it’s probably about the legendary cookie butter. I bought a jar on my first trip, eager to see if it lived up to the hype. It did- and more. Clocking in at a whopping 90 calories per tablespoon, it’s definitely not my go-to dessert, but I still sneak a spoonful every now and then. It’s super addicting, and a must-try for any TJ’s newbie!

Something I noticed about TJ’s entrées pretty quickly is that a lot of them lean towards the healthier side. I’m all about clean eating, but I definitely have a sweet tooth, too. TJ’s frozen desserts blew me away! My personal favorite has been the macarons imported straight from France, but I also fell in love with the vanilla meringues as well.

I am going to be so sad when I go back to Norman in August, when the closest Trader Joe’s is in Edmond! I’ll definitely have to stock up on my favorite non-frozen items before I make the trip back to Oklahoma.

I’m finding new items at TJ’s every time I go, so watch my Instagram story for more favorites as I discover them!

-K

Hey Shorty

I love the high-waisted trend that’s been going strong for months now, and when the weather warmed up I knew I had to go about finding myself a pair. As someone with full hips but a small waist, finding high-waisted items can sometimes be a challenge.

Luckily, I stumbled across this pair at H&M while shopping for something completely different! They had a variety of colors, but I went with black because I knew that would easily match with most of my closet. I think I’m going to go back for more soon because I love the fit so much!

SHOP THE LOOK:

Top: Striped T-Shirt (similar)
Shorts: Cotton Twill Shorts – H&M
Shoes: Advantage Sneaker – Adidas

I love my casual chic dress code at work, but I love my days off too! When I’m not working, I get to wear things (like shorts) that still wouldn’t fly in an office setting. So glad that my schedule allows me to show y’all the best of both worlds when it comes to my #OOTD options!

-K

The Falsies Push Up Angel Mascara

Personally, I’m not someone who chooses to spend my money on expensive makeup brands. At this point in my life, I believe that almost all my makeup needs can be met by using drugstore brands, instead of their high-end counterparts.

Recently, I’ve been wanting to start sharing some of my favorite drugstore products so you can save some money, too! The first product I’ve decided to review is The Falsies Push Up Angel Mascara by Maybelline, a staple in my makeup routine.

This product threw me off at first because of the shape of the wand. I am used to using mascaras with bristles that go all the way around, so when I took this one out of the packaging initially I was super surprised that it only had bristles on half. When I apply mascara, I typically rotate the wand to make sure I’m using all the product before I dip it back in the tube, so not having to rotate the brush at all was a little bit of a hard adjustment to make.

Another thing about this product that was hard for me was having to be a lot more steady-handed. If you’re not careful, you’ll slip and get mascara all over your eyelid. I’m not sure why it’s so much harder to apply this one, but make sure you’re prepared to really take your time while applying.

Now that I’ve covered some of the trickier parts of this product, let’s get into what I love!

I’ve used many mascaras in my time, and a pet-peeve of mine is clumpy eyelashes. I would seriously used to go in with a clothing pin to make sure my lashes are separated and clump-free. I was delighted to find out that I never have to do that when I’m using The Falsies Push Up Angel Mascara! It leaves my lashes long and separated every time, not a clump in sight.

I also love how easy it is to apply definition to your lower lash line. I’ve always struggled with applying mascara to my lower lashes, but this product makes it easy. I love that my lower lashes can now get as much TLC as my upper lashes!

Overall, I really recommend this mascara. It’s everything I want in a mascara, and I think it would be a great product to try for anyone looking for a clump-free application with lots of length.

If you end up giving this product a try, let me know what you think! You can purchase it here, or at any retail location where Maybelline is sold.

-K

Austin Room Tour

As some of you know, I moved down to Austin last Friday, and recently I finished up decorating my new room! It took me a few days to get everything exactly how I wanted it, but I’m so in love now. It has a lot of the same elements from my apartment back home in Norman, which really helps me feel comfortable in a new space!

One of my favorite spaces in my room is my desk area. I basically transplanted my desk in Norman here in Austin because I loved the layout so much. (If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!) I spend a lot of time at my desk writing blog posts, browsing Pinterest, and listening to music. I knew I was going to sit here frequently whenever I’m home, so I made sure it was organized, cute, and personable! The only difference between this desk layout and the one at my apartment is the addition of the photo board that hangs above my head- in Norman, it’s a gallery wall.

My dresser is another aspect of my room that I basically transplanted from Norman. Since my dresser is one of the first places in my room that I see in the morning, I wanted to make sure it was as cute and efficient as possible. Because of this layout, I have easy access to all my accessories, and other things like pajamas and workout gear. I had to bring my letter board with me- it’s one of my favorite parts of my room!

This little nook is completely new and different from anything I have at college. I found this little stuffed bird in the Target dollar section, and I fell in love. I knew I had to have him! In addition to my feathery friend, I also store my self-help books here.

This should look familiar! I brought my entire bed set from Norman during the move, down to my fluffy cow Émile. The photo boards are a new addition, but everything else about my bed stayed the same.

One of my goals for the summer is to learn basic tumbling, starting with a cartwheel. Luckily, my room is large enough to practice in! If I progress any further than a cartwheel or a roundoff I’ll probably have to head to the backyard, but for now my carpeted floor is good for me.

I had such a fun time decorating my room and making it my own! I can’t wait to bring y’all more #ATX content soon. If there’s anything you want me to experience or review while I’m here through August, let me know!

-K

Book Review: Girl Code

I’m super excited to be back with another book review! Today’s post is going to be part review/part reflection on my own life and what this book taught me. It’s going to get a little personal, but I think this conversation is important and is something I’ve been wanting to talk about for a while!

GIRL CODE: CARA ALWILL LEYBA

Girl Code by Cara Alwill Leyba is a self-help book that focuses on inspiring and empowering female entrepreneurs. Although my future career in public relations probably won’t set me up to be a technical entrepreneur at any point, I still see the value in branding yourself, much like you would a business. Because of the personal branding aspect, I think that this book is a great read for any young businesswoman wanting to learn how to set herself apart from the crowd, even if she isn’t taking the leap to start her own business just yet.

Something unique about this book that I appreciate are the interviews it features at the end of every chapter. Cara chooses a female entrepreneur that inspires her and features them in her book, tying their personal stories and business journeys back into the lesson she is trying to teach in that chapter. I liked the personal aspect that these interviews bring to the book, and also helps me learn and connect with other female entrepreneurs along the way.

My favorite topic that Cara talks about in this book actually occurs in chapter one, and it’s something that has stuck with me ever since I read through it for the very first time. (I come back to this chapter frequently, because this is a message I think I need reminding of every so often.) And that message is simple: there’s enough for all of us.

When I switched majors from journalism to public relations in the fall of my junior year, I felt so behind. In my mind, everyone my age had more experience than me, were taking more advanced classes than me, and were landing better internships than me. It was easy to get caught up in a comparison game: comparing my resume to someone else’s, comparing my portfolio to someone else’s. I felt so far behind that I thought I may never catch up and be as successful as my peers who had been PR majors since freshman year.

This chapter taught me that the comparison game does no one any favors. As Cara says,

“We have to let go of the notion that another woman’s success is our failure.”

Just because someone else is getting X internship or Y experience, doesn’t mean that I am inherently a failure. I am working at my own pace, and doing things my own way. And that’s okay.

The idea that “just because someone else has it, there is none left for us” is wrong. Cara stresses “limitless luxe,” meaning that we can achieve anything we desire as long as we believe that they can happen for us.

Another important point in this chapter is that

“Whatever your gift is, no one can do it quite like you.”

Just because other people in my major want to do fashion and lifestyle public relations does not mean we are competitors. No one can do my job exactly like me. I have no competition but the competition with myself- to get better and be better every single day. It’s easy for me to see some people in my major with very similar life goals, and start to view them as competition. But that’s simply not the case! Because of Girl Code, I’ve been making a conscious effort to think of everyone in my industry as connections, rather than just the next person to beat. And that is helping me stay positive when the stress of my future starts to get to me.

I hope you enjoyed this book review and my commentary on how it influenced my life! I highly recommend it to any young professional, entrepreneur or not. It taught me so much and I’m going to be bringing it along with me to Austin this summer so I can read through it from time to time as a reminder!

You can purchase Girl Code here.

To connect with Cara Awill Leyba, you can visit her website, Instagram, or listen to her podcast (another favorite of mine!)

-K

Resting Beach Face

This Easter weekend, my family decided to travel down to Corpus Christi and visit my sister! I flew in last night and spent the evening walking around down by the pier and going out to dinner. Last night’s sunset was spectacular, too!

Today is our only full day together in Corpus, so we decided to spend the majority of it at the beach. We spent a few hours in the late morning/early afternoon just laying out and enjoying the nice weather. I also flew some kites with my sister. They were very small and cute- perfect for novice kite-fliers like us.

We also have one of our dogs, Chloe, with us on this trip! She loves the beach because she just gets to lay around and chill out. I can’t say she likes going in the water very much, though.

We got sandwiches for lunch, and then headed out to our second activity of the day: we rented a golf cart and got to drive it around on the beach and through the residential neighborhoods. I had a great time, but I forgot to reapply sunblock, so my knees got a little burnt. Oops!

After our golf cart ride, my sister and I decided to go for a swim in the pool right outside our condo! I haven’t actually been swimming in a while (I don’t consider lounging in the hot tub during spring break “swimming”) so it was extra fun for me. I was a competitive swimmer for 10 years and have really missed being in the water.

My flight out tomorrow is at noon, and I’ll be so sad to leave! It’s almost finals week, so I would much rather stay here. I guess the pool at my apartment complex will have to suffice.

-K