First Photos

So I’ve been playing around with my new camera for like a day and it’s been so fun trying to get the right mix of settings to get a good photo. I have no idea what to do when it comes to editing on Photoshop so these photos are all unedited. Bear with me, they are absolutely amateurish but I think it will be fun to show my starting point and then slowly record my progress. Plus, you get a peek of my room and my cutie of a boyfriend. Oh, and some awesome friends on our first night out. Enjoy!

IMG_2496 IMG_2502 IMG_2503Extra love to my A Beautiful Mess Book as well as my favorite styling books, Lauren Conrad’s Beauty and Style.

IMG_2508Keeping these pictures and memories from prom is extremely important to me. Make sure you have pretty framed photographs for your dorm room, especially if your dorms don’t let you hang pictures (with other than tape, which could damage them).

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Moving In

I have been a bit absent for the past week but it’s all because I’ve been gearing up to move in back to my dorm in college. I wanted to leave you a quick note that I’m getting fueled up to bring you the bestest posts ever. I’m getting a new camera which means that I’m going to be doing a lot of photography posts and I hope that I will be able to bring you awesome quality content. So far, I’m settled into my dorm and I’m having fun just chilling until the school year actually starts. I’m going to be bringing you pictures of my dorm, decorating tips, and more! Stay tuned and don’t worry, I’ll be updating more often soon!

xo,
Patricia

New Year, New Goals

I’m always excited to start the new school year. Not only am I a school-supply freak but I also love the feeling fresh starts. Even though I’m going to sophomore year (already?!), I still feel like there’s so much more to discover this year. And, after a pretty tragic year in my family (I will share about my story sometime, I promise), I’m ready to tackle this new year with a new mindset. There are several upcoming things that I’m looking forward to like Model United Nation conferences and Andrey’s and I first year anniversary (again, already?!). There are some goals I would like to accomplish this new year, though. I know what you might be thinking, “Isn’t the actual new year meant for new goals?” and my response is, yes, but not really. For me, going from December 31st to January 1st, although there is a sense of newness, it isn’t as much as a big deal. I feel that, with school, you can learn so much and open so many doors.

So, that said, I have a few goals I would like to share with you. Here they are!

1. Start photography: So as you may have seen on this previous post, I’m really looking forward to starting photography and developing that skill. I plan to do a 365 photography challenge to get me started practicing. It’s going to be a fun adventure.
2. Write more: I used to write all the time (novels, poetry, short stories) but I feel like that’s been lacking lately so, although I don’t know how realistically I can expect myself to write with so much else going on during college, I hope to at least write more than I have for the last few years.
3. Get good grades: This almost goes without saying but I really want to get the best grades. This year is crucial for me because it’s the last year I can totally guarantee I can afford so getting good grades would open so many doors for me for scholarships and loans. I’m really hoping to make it!

What are your goals for the new school year? If you’re not in school, do you have any goals you want to accomplish by the end of the year?

xo, Patricia

Traveling To…Paris, France

Paris France

 

Ah, the city of romance. Although I’ve never been, Paris is definitely on my bucket list of places to visit. I have been wanting to go ever since I watched Midnight In Paris. I would love to sit in a café at nighttime with my lover and sip wine while wearing a beautiful cocktail dress and…

Sorry, I got a little carried away. But I think that’s bound to happen whenever we dream about Paris. Well, onto the outfit inspired by this romantic place.

Paris France outfit

 

Give yourself to luxury with this outfit. Inspired by romance, class, and luxury, this outfit mixes beige, pink, and golden tones to make you the object of Hemingway’s…err…your loved one’s affection. You can find more details about the items here.

New England Aquarium

I’m not a super fan of super touristy places but when you come to Boston, you’re welcomed by a beautiful sense of both cozyness and adventure. There’s no need to rush to all the attractions if you’re going to be here for a long period of time but once you do, you find yourself enjoying every single second of tourist-filled glory.

Last week I went to the New England Aquarium with my boyfriend and we had a blast feeling like little kids touching the starfish, crabs, stingrays, and admiring the beautiful exhibitions. The aquarium isn’t huge but there’s a super cute penguin exhibition as soon as you walk in as well as really interesting (live) shark eggs. I can’t forget to mention, the HUGE ocean tank covers all five stories of the building and you can circle it for a 360-degree view. It houses some interesting fish, huge (as in GIGANTIC) turtles and an array of funny looking animals.  The place is absolutely beautiful and totally worth the wait in line and the trip.

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What About Photography?

61QD1V6sZtLI‘ve been obsessed with A Beautiful Mess for more than a year now and the second their book, A Beautiful Mess Photo Idea Book, came out, I dashed to the nearest Barnes and Noble to buy it. I devoured the book in a few hours and then I was left with a really empty feeling…

So for a few years (more like five) I’ve really been wanting to tackle photography. I’ve read so many books about it, been to so many websites and learned all about f/stops and shutter speed and ISO. But, there was a big problem. I never really got the DSLR I’ve always wanted and my parents (who, for their credit, keep getting me good point and shoots with high megapixel counts) always thought it was too expensive for me to get one.

But now, with the fact that I’m working, I’ve decided to splurge myself at the end of the summer and finally get a DSLR. I’ve done some reading and I’m pretty sure I want to get a Canon Rebel T2i (I’ll probably buy the kit at eBay.) Yeah, I know the kit lenses aren’t the bestest but I figured that I should be cut some slack because a) I’m just starting and b) I’m a college student. So I know my parents (or boyfriend for our first year anniversary *wink wink*) will probably not want to spend a whole bunch of dollaz for a fancy camera when they might be a bit skeptical of my photography skills. So, while I get the hang of things and develop some nice skills and good results, I plan on saving and then convincing my loved ones to gift me a lens (or two? Christmas, anyone?)

Do you have a DSLR? What kind of camera do you use? What lenses do you use? Comment below!

xo, Patricia

P.S. I’ll be doing a detailed review of the book soon.

Back-To-School Trends

The school year is right around the corner and I have to admit I’m super excited! I always love the new school year. I love the back to school shopping for notebooks, pens, school supplies (I’m obsessed!) and, of course, clothes! So, in order to get Back-To-School ready, I’ve highlighted here the upcoming fell trends and pieces you should get for the new season!

1. FLORALS
So florals may seem so summer but if you get prints that are dark or set against a darker fabric, you’ll find the girly, summer vibe take full throttle to gothic grunge. I’m in complete love with this jumpsuit from Topshop

2. MIDI SKIRTS
I’ve been praising the glories of midi skirts all summer but there is seriously no better transition piece than this type of skirt. The cut will keep you warm as the weather gets chillier but pair with wedges and colorful scarfs to keep it perfectly summery. This one from ASOS can go from day to night in a jiffy.

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3. DENIM JACKETS
There’s a thing about denim jackets that just makes me think back-to-school. And if you get the right one, you can definitely pull it off when the weather gets weird and you’re not sure whether it’s going to be sunny or chilly. Pair one with crop tops and shorts at the beginning of the fall season and as it gets colder, opt for denim on denim looks (can look super classy if done right!). This one from Tobi comes in a super fun, unexpected wash.
denim jacket4. TRIBAL PATTERNS
I love tribal patterns in anything from a cute beanie to chunky knit sweaters. This cute skirt has a fun pattern that would go great with dark and light colors (aka perfect transition piece). Pair it with slinky heels for a night out or tights and a sweater and flats for class.

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5. DETAILED SWEATERS
Say goodbye to old boring sweaters. Bring back some life into your fall wardrobe with embellished sweaters or sweaters that have some kind of detail that makes you stand out against the sea of peers. H&M has some cute ones, including this fancy-looking beaded one.

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Have a great start to the new year!

Having a Relationship First Year of College

Having a relationship during the first year of college can be nothing short of challenging. When my boyfriend and I met, we didn’t imagine at all that we would ever get together. We were both under the mentality that we were going to have fun, party, and date around our first year of college to get that real ‘college experience.’

Once my boyfriend and I started hanging out more and more as friends (and the occasional hook-up) we realized that we both had stronger feelings for each other than we had ever let on. We knew that getting into a relationship while it was still mid first semester of college was going to be challenging (were we both ready to settle down?) but we decided to take the challenge because we cared about each other and we knew we didn’t want to lose the other person.

Now, almost 10 months later, both of still can’t believe we’ve grown so much and we’ve lasted that long. College is already so new and challenging and being in a relationship takes a LOT of work. Andrey and I are very serious about each other and about our future together and, to some my age it may be weird or too serious, I’ve always thought that if I can’t think of myself with a person far into the future, then it isn’t worth it to begin with. So, I’ve decided to share a few tips that have helped me through this year:

Never go to bed angry
We’ve made it a point that we’ll never go to bed being angry at each other. If we’re having a disagreement and things feel like getting out of hand, both of us agreed that we would step back for a few minutes to think and tackle the problem right then and there. Going to sleep being angry at the person you love just makes everything more difficult for the next day and the days it takes to solve the problem. Usually, Andrey and I talk everything out and we’re so happy to go to bed satisfied that we have handled the situation.

Schedule
I know it might seem weird to schedule time for a relationship, but especially during college where everything can get a bit hectic, scheduling a date or time for yourselves is extremely important. You want to make sure that you’re giving your loved one the time they need and deserve. On the flip side, you do want to also schedule time for yourselves. If Andrey wants to chill with his boys and have some boys time, I tell him to tell me in a few days in advance to make sure I plan a girls’ night. That way, neither of us feel like the other is being left out or put into the backburner of priorities.

Talk
This seems like the obvious one but I’ve learned the hard way that saying what I feel is really important. You want your loved one to understand you, not guess what’s going on in your head and then guess what’s the best method to solve it. Tell your loved one what you’re feeling and how you want it resolved. Once both of your feelings are out in the open, talk it out and develop a compromise!

Hope these few tips help, especially right now when we’re getting close to the new school year!

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P.S. To this date, this is still my favorite photo of us, taken back in December.

Traveling To…Roussillon, France

Roussillon France
Traveling To… is a series which takes you to different corners of the world from the comfort of your own home. Each post includes an outfit idea inspired by the destination. This week we are going to the historical Roussillon, France!

Roussillon, France inspires simple romanticism. The history, rusticness, and vibe of the town inspired the following outfit idea:

Roussillon France outfit

The top on this outfit has lace detail, bringing it back to classical times and giving it a romantic feel. The shorts give it a pop of color and the brown leather/gold accessories pull the whole look together giving it a casual, rustic feel. You can see more details of each item here.

Happy Travels!

Book Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

13335037In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her. Description from Goodreads

This was in my to-read list after my sister recommended it to me and I honestly have little words to say of it. In short: THIS. BOOK. IS. AMAZING.

Suffice it to say that I read this book in under 24 hours. I literally could not stop. Tris, the main character is from Abnegation and not only does the book have a great plot, but it also really fleshes out the voices of the characters and shows how they develop, which, to me, is so important for a book to have. Veronica Roth spends a lot of time making sure the reader understands the decisions her characters make and you truly get a sense of ‘the world is definitely not black and white.’ It’s so interesting that she developed this concept and it’s so relatable–not all of us are entirely good or selfless.

Also, Four, Tris’s love interest, is exceptionally yummy and I love how their relationship develops through the book and how complicated it seems to be. I’m soooo happy that Roth didn’t succumb to the love trianges/everyone likes me but I only like him kind of love story here. It’s perfectly imperfect.

Definitely recommend this one!

Happy reading!