June 27, 2014

OOTD: Of florals and iPhone cases {Giveaway with Made by JH!}









All pictures credit to Annie Lemieux Photography (aka my mama! :-) )


Top: Marshall's || Shorts: Marshall's || Shoes: The Walking Company || Sunglasses: Kohl's || Hat: Target || Purse: Michael Kors|| Necklace: Forever 21 || Bracelets: Charming Charlie || Ring: Charming Charlie || Nail Polish: Sally Hansen Hard As Nails in No Hard Feelings || Lips: Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Cupcake || iPhone Case: c/o Made by JH


     I am so excited to be featuring a giveaway today with an Etsy shop called Made by JH! Shop owner Janet hand paints goregous iPhone cases that can fit either the iPhone 4 or 5. I am absolutely obsessed with the beautiful colors in the case that I got to review from Janet's shop! Another thing that I love about Made by JH is that Janet's shop is based out of Charlotte, and I love working with Queens City businesses. :-) So be sure to enter the giveaway at the end of this post! It will run until July 4th, 2014.

     Now let's talk about this neon floral tank-top that I am wearing. (The pictures don't really do it justice for how bright and pretty it is!) This is one of my finds that I picked up at the Marshall's on Newbury Street in Boston a couple weeks ago when I was down there for the #BloggersTakeBoston meet-up! Katie and I took a late morning bus into Boston so that we'd have some free time in the city before meeting up with the other bloggers later in the afternoon. And what's a girl to do with free time? SHOP! The huge Marshall's on Newbury Street definitely didn't disappoint! Both of us ended up finding things that we loved, and I'm pretty sure that the dress that I came home with will end up being my birthday dress (just means that I have to save it until September :-( ). 

     Anyways, it had been a long while since I had been in a Marshall's, as my parents are more TJ Maxx fans and Marshall's isn't somewhere that I usually frequent when I'm at school, but I might have to change that! There were so many things in the Boston store that I could have taken home! And everything was very reasonably priced as well! I believe everything that Katie and I bought was under $20. 



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     xoxo Miss ALK

June 25, 2014

Summer Netflix Favorites.

 


     Ahhh, summer. The season when I have long days at work and no homework to worry about, so it is the perfect time of year to make the most out of my Netflix account! My parents got me my Netflix account for my 18th birthday, and it was one of the best gifts they've ever given me. ;-) (Don't know how I would have made it through college this far without it... I kid I kid! Or do I?) I have both a DVD plan and the instant streaming plan, but this blog post is going to focus on my favorite picks for Netflix instant since that's what's most popular and accessible on most devices. Some of these shows are what I'm currently watching, others are what I watched right after getting Netflix a couple years ago, but all of these choices are what I think would make excellent summer entertainment choices!



     How I Met Your Mother





     I fully credit Jess, my Big in my sorority, for getting me hooked on this show last semester! The first eight seasons are streaming on Netflix and they provided tons of entertainment for me as I got through my spring semester of sophomore year. The ninth and final season of the show just finished, and it should be up on Netflix sometime this fall! This show wasn't my favorite when I first started it, but it grew on me through the seasons. I loved how believable the characters were (especially Barney- I had a guy friend in high school that reminded me so much of him!) and how certain items keep popping up again and again through the seasons. And if you need one more reason to watch- Robin Sparkles. Need I say more?!






     Jab Tak Hai Jaan



     


     I have posted before that I love all things related to Indian culture. I am obsessed with Indian food, and another aspect of Indian culture that I love is the Bollywood film industry. Netflix actually has a really great selection of Bollywood movies available for streaming, and they all come with English subtitles! This movie, Jab Take Hai Jaan, is one of my favorites. It's a long one... over three hours long, but I love it so much that I've watched it three times! (And that's saying a lot since I'm not a huge movie person to begin with!) This movie is a romantic drama... another surprising factor that I liked it so much since those aren't usually my types of films at all (I usually avoid most Nicholas Sparks films or other overly sappy romantic movies). But this movie is absolutely the most beautiful love story! A small portion is set in India but the majority is set in London. The main reason that I was excited to visit London last winter is because I knew so much of this movie took place there haha!! :-) Anyways,  the movie has a difficult love triangle in it, and is very heartwrenching. It also features some wonderful Bollywood music, below are my two favorite songs from the movie! Seriously, I'd recommend for anyone to give it a try! It might just make you fall in love with Bollywood. 







     Hart of Dixie





     Okay... if y'all don't take any of my other two Netflix suggestions... TAKE THIS ONE. (Caps lock 100% necessary.) This is literally one of the BEST TELEVISION SHOWS I HAVE EVER SEEN. And I don't say that often! The only other TV show that comes this close to my whole heart is 7th Heaven... which will probably forever be my #1 favorite TV show, but Hart of Dixie is officially a close #2. This show is amazing! I suppose it's time for me to actually to tell you why I love it so much, haha. :-) First off, I love the balance between comedy and drama. It has its serious moments, and they're heartfelt and believeable, but not over-the-top or totally unrealistic. It really seems to portray real life quite well. And it actually has its comedic moments too! Those happen way more in season 2, but so far during the second season I've been laughing so hard that I've cried multiple times. I have literally fallen in love with the characters (and how could you not fall in love with those three good lookin' guys in the cast photo above?!), and I love how its set in a small town in the South. If you don't believe me that this show is good- listen to this! So I told my best friend Jules to try watching it, and we don't normally have the same TV tastes... but she was halfway done with Season 1 within 48 hours!! And within a week she had gotten her whole family hooked on it! Her parents, younger brother and younger sister... they were all watching every night with her. And I can bet you that I definitely don't normally have the same TV tastes as Jules's younger brother. ;-) So my point- this show is GOLD. Watch it- you won't regret it!!! 


     Have you been hooked on any Netflix shows lately? Since I'm almost done with Hart of Dixie (until season 4 comes out on the CW this fall!), I'm trying to decide what to watch next! I'm thinking Friday Night Lights or Greek? A high school friend recommended Friday Night Lights to me and I love Connie Britton since she's the star of Nashville... one of my other favorite shows. But at the same time I want to give Greek a try since I am a Greek at my college, haha! So help me out and let me know what you've been watching! I also enjoy watching documentaries and interesting movies sometimes... my tastes are all over the place. 


     xoxo Miss ALK


    P.S. Stay tuned for some giveaways on here SOON! :-)

June 23, 2014

#BloggersTakeBoston Recap.

     Last week I had the wonderful opportunity to travel to Boston for the day with one of my best friends from home (who is also a blogging bestie!), Katie from Inkspot, for a blogging meet-up with some fellow members of the Her Campus Blogger Network! I've been a member of the HCBN for over  a year now, and it's a great blogging network for college aged girls to be apart of. One of my favorite HCBN bloggers is Ashliegh from The Darling Daily (formally The Darling Prepster). She contacted me a few weeks ago to let me know that she and some of her college friends would be on vacation in Boston in mid-June. Boston is under two hours away from my hometown in Maine, and I knew that I couldn't pass up the chance to meet my favorite Ohio blogger! Ashliegh was also able to arrange for another sweet HCBN blogger, Ingrid from Smilingrid, (who is a native Bostonian!) to come and join us.

     Despite the fact that I've lived in Charlotte for over a year and generally have no problems with driving there (and actually enjoy it some of the time- shocker!), driving in Boston is a whole different animal. Excuse my language, but Mainers refer to drivers from Massachusetts as "Massholes" for a reason. ;-) There was no way that Katie or I wanted to drive to the city or hastle with parking for the day, so we decided to drive to New Hampshire and then take a bus from there directly into the city! Another option for Mainers travelling to Boston is to take the Amtrak Downeaster train, but the times of the day that the bus arrived in the city worked better for us, and it ended up working out perfectly! \

     I will let my pictures tell the rest of the story of our fun day trip to the city for #BloggersTakeBoston! (My pictures are a combo of ones from my camera and Katie's smaller digital camera. She is currently working on editing my OOTD pictures that she took on her DSLR camera- that post will be up later this week!


Katie's first time ever riding the subway (or as they call it in Boston, the T)!

A huge costume jewelry store that we visited on Newbury Street, which is Boston's main shopping district! I wish I had bought something there, they had so mch cute stuff.


Being total tourists and taking pictures in front of the fancy Newbury Street Marshall's.


Boston Common!



Entrance to the Public Garden!

Because best friends of twelve and a half years take ugly pictures of each other when the other isn't looking simply out of love. ;-)



This picture was me testing out the light... I wanted this spot for OOTD pictures but as y'all can see it was a littl bright. :-(


Beautiful Public Garden!




L to R: Ashliegh's Little in her sorority, Brittney (a fitness blogger and real-life friend of Ashliegh's), Ashliegh, me and Katie!

Riding the swan boats with Ashliegh (and twinning with our sunglasses)!

View from our swan boat ride!

At the Cheesecake Factory where we had a delicious dinner!! We were joined by Ashliegh's boyfriend Christian, his friend, and fellow HCBN blogger Ingrid! 

My cheesecake! You can never go wrong at the Cheesecake Factory so I tried a new one- Mango Key Lime. 

Headed back to the bus station to catch our bus home!

All the bloggers: Katie, Ingrid, Me, Ashliegh and Brittney!

Love this picture that Ingrid captured!! Katie taking some OOTD pictures for me after dinner. She's a fabulous photographer :-)


    
     I absolutely love getting to "meet" bloggers online through their blogs, social media, and getting to know them more personally through e-mails and becoming Facebook friends. But nothing beats getting to finally meet blogging friends face-to-face! I would strongly encourage all of you to pursue taking your blogging friendships and turning them into real-life friendships if you can. (Or making your real-life friends start blogs and therefore making them blogging friends. ;-)) I had absolutely the best day with Ashliegh, Brittney, Ingrid and Ashliegh's other friends from college. It does seem crazy to me to tell people that I met them all "online," but then again I couldn't have pictured it happening any other way! 

    In Fall 2013 I had the opportunity to meet a lot of NC bloggers! Here are the links to a few of my blog posts about some of my favorite bloggers that I've met: 

     This past Spring I also got to meet Charlotte wedding and events blogger Kristin from Lilly and Lace! She is a sweetheart as well. :-)


     So bottom line- blogging friendships are AWESOME. This meet-up just makes me want to meet even more bloggers!


     Stay tuned later this week for the details of the outfit that I wore in Boston, as well as a fun giveaway for the sunglass straps that I wore that day! 


     xoxo Miss ALK


   


June 19, 2014

Guest post: Sorority Summer Style by Greek Streak

     Today I have a special guest post lined up for y'all! My friends over at Greek Streak, a sorority and fraternity apparel company, have requested to guest post here at Southern Belle in Training! They also sent me an adorable Alpha Delta Pi tank-top from their sorority apparel collection to review. I love this fun tank, it is light-weight and perfect for summer, and I know that I will get a lot of use out of it on beach days especially!





Tank: c/o Greek Streak || Leggings: Victoria's Secret PINK || Sandals: Target || Sunglasses: Charming Charlie || Bow: Glitter 


     Their guest post is customized a bit to Alpha Delta Pi since that is my sorority, but the fashion ideas in the post are things that girls in any sorority could try with their own sorority's symbols and colors. Enjoy the guest post from Erica of Greek Streak! 


Sorority Summer Fashion

Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean you shouldn’t display your Alpha Delta Pi sisterhood pride. In fact, the hot summer months are actually the perfect time to showcase the style that defines the Alpha Delta Pi sorority! From diamonds to custom T-shirts, there are plenty of ways to showcase sorority style during this season away from school. Want some fresh inspiration? Looking for new ways to work sorority love into what you wear? Here are a couple specific options for showing you’re a sorority girl this season!

Shiny Sparkle and Bling
The diamond is the official badge for Alpha Delta Pi, so add some dazzle to your wardrobe this summer! Whether you buy cubic zirconia stud earrings or rhinestone-studded sandals, adding a little bling to your outfits is a subtle way to show your sisterhood pride, as well to add some sparkle to your style.

Blue and White Colors
Nothing says summer beach living like the classic combination of white and blue. And since these are the official Alpha Delta Pi colors, you have more than one reason to work them into your wardrobe this summer! Try a white maxi dress with an azure blue statement necklace or white jeans with a royal blue blouse. Any way you work the white and blue together, you’re spreading sorority pride.

Violet in Your Wardrobe
Since violet is the official flower of Alpha Delta Pi, try incorporating it into your outfits through violet jewelry, tops or dresses. Whether you pick a violet bikini or a violet sundress, this pretty color is a shout-out to all things Alpha Delta Pi.

Custom Sorority Shirts
Maybe the easiest way to show off Alpha Delta Pi pride is also the most effective: wear a custom-designed shirt. When you sport a T-shirt with the Alpha Delta Pi logo or a shirt with Alpha Delta Pi name, you make the message clearer than ever that you’re a sorority girl who’s proud of it.

What ways will you show off sorority pride this summer break? Will you follow the fashion ideas above, or do you have some of your own? Whether you’re sporting sorority pins, sorority colors or something else, finding ways to promote Alpha Delta Pi is not only fun — it’s also a great way to draw new recruits! Let everyone around you know that you love Alpha Delta Pi, and join your sisterhood around the country promoting the sorority vibe!

Erica Wolfe is a proud Delta Phi Epsilon member and a Marketing Associate Greek Streak – an online Greek apparel retailer providing fraternity and sorority clothing for the Greek community.


June 18, 2014

Insta-Lately.

    I'm back after taking an unexpected few days off from blogging! I had planned to have a few posts scheduled, but the past week was absolute craziness for me. I worked almost 40 hours at my job, and then I spent Monday (my first day off after the busy work week) in Boston for a blogging meet-up- much more to come on that later this week! But for today I wanted to give y'all a little update into what my busy week has looked like via Instagram:



     Nail polish decisions are the hardest decisions, especially when all the choices are Essie! That day I ended up picking Bottle Service, the pink one! (Although I have to say it isn't my favorite Essie polish, I forgot how easily it chips even with a top coat. But it is a pretty color!)




     One of the things that I love the most about the store that I work at in the summers is that employees have a business casual dress code! I take full advantage of that, and I love playing around with different accessories, hairstyles and make-up to match my work dresses (I rarely wear pants to my job). On this particular night I decided to mix things up with false eyelashes!! I have a couple natural looking pairs that are work appropriate and add just a touch of glam. :-)




     Last Saturday night was the only Saturday night in the month of June that I had off! (I still had to work though- I just had the morning shift. ;-)) I wanted to take advantage of that and organized a group dinner for some of my high school friends at our favorite local Mexican restaurant (This is the first time this summer that a whole group of us have gotten together). My best friend from high school, Jules, came over to my house beforehand to catch up and do her nails with me. She is doing some summer classes at her university and also working, so we haven't seen much of each other since I've been home! It was so good to spend some quality time together, and then to get to go to dinner with the rest of our friends as well! All in all it was a fun night with delicious food and lots of laughs!




     Lastly, a little exciting announcement! I am taking over the Blog Baton Instagram account today (June 18th) so be sure to follow along if you aren't already!! I have been on a waiting list to hold the baton for a long time, so I have been so excited to finally have this opportunity. :-) A huge thanks to Mason of Mason Like The Jar for creating and managing the Blog Baton- this is such a fun thing for bloggers!


     So that's a little taste of my life lately! Expect later this week to see a fun Greek life inspired guest post, much more about the blogging meet-up I attended in Boston and some giveaways coming your way soon!


     xoxo Miss ALK

June 13, 2014

OOTD: Twirl {eShakti dress review}.








All pictures credit to Shara Lynn Photography


Dress: c/o eShakti || Cardigan: LOFT || Shoes: Jack Rogers || Sunglasses: Kohl's || Bow: {local boutique} || Bracelets: c/o Urban Peach Boutique || Ring: {old} || Earrings: Talbots || Nails: Essie in Bottle Service || Lips: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Demure 


     I think these might be some of my favorite pictures that I've ever shared on my blog! As always my friend Shara did an amazing job with the photography on these images, and I'm seriously in love with them. It only helped that the dress that I'm wearing had the most perfect skirt for twirling! ;-)

     I'm so excited to be reviewing a dress in the post from eShakti. eShakti is an online women's apparel company that primarily sells beautiful dresses (although they do have a decent selection of tops, jackets and skirts as well!). Their dresses range from casual sundresses to gorgeous semi-formal dresses. And the best part is that all of the clothing on their website can be custom fitted and designed to your height, size and style, for a very low additional cost. How wonderful is that? One of the reasons that I have always been a hesistant online clothing shopper is because I'm always unsure of how things will fit once they arrive. But with the customizations that eShakti is able to do I certainly felt a lot more confident, and the beautiful dress that they sent me arrived fitting perfectly

     On a different note, the day that these pictures were taken was the first day in a few weeks that I'd straightened my hair. I finally noticed how long it's getting again, which makes me so happy! I've missed my long hair more than anything! I'm just going to let it keep growing and growing and growing, until it's back to its crazy long length that it was at when I was in high school again. :-) 


     I hope that everyone is having a wonderful weekend! I'm in the middle of my five day work week, it started on Wednesday and is running through Sunday. But I'm looking forward though to going out to dinner on Saturday night with some of my high school friends at our favorite local Mexican restaurant, and then having a fun day trip to Boston on Monday with my friend Katie for a blogging meet-up! 


     xoxo Miss ALK

June 12, 2014

June Goals.

     This is officially the latest that I've ever gotten my monthly goals up... oops! I don't really have any good excuses except that my work schedule has finally started to pick up, but I've still been writing other blog posts, so I guess this is just been on that I've been procrastinating on. ;-) Let's take a look back at my May goals and see how I did!


     1. Set up at least one job shadowing opportunity. CHECK! I got to job shadow last month for a morning radio show at a local Christian radio station. It was so much fun- such a great experience!! I also got be the emcee for a dance recital during the month of May (you can read more about that in this post). I'm so glad that I got to do both of these things before my work schedule got crazy!
     2. Set up some blog collaborations. Check! Stay tuned tomorrow for a fun OOTD post where I get to review a beautiful dress, and I'm also doing reviews soon for books and accessories.
     3. Cook and bake more. Check! I made a couple of Thai curry dishes in May, and I found a delicous banana spice muffin recipe on Pinterest that I made twice! I'm hoping to continue to be active in the kitchen more throughout the summer.
    4. Finish unpacking from college. Sadly I still have a fairly large pile of stuff in our TV room downstairs... but I did a good job with getting everything that I will need to use this summer unpacked. That's progress right?


     And since I'm getting this post up so late this month, I only have three goals for June 2014:


     1. Have a blast at the Boston HCBN Blogger meet-up! Next week my real life and blogging bestie Katie and I are headed to Boston for the day for a fun meet-up with several other bloggers from the Her Campus Blogging Network! I've been apart of the HCBN now for over a year, and it's been very beneficial to my blog. I've met so many wonderful ladies through it, and I can't wait to finally meet some of them in person (especially Ashliegh of The Darling Daily!).
     2. Practice French. I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned this much on here before, but I'm a French minor in college! I did really well in my most recent French course this semester... but I haven't picked up my textbooks since my final exam. ;-) A foreign language is something that you constantly have to review to retain, so I should be practicing and reviewing that that I will be all set in August when I return to the classroom! (I'm also the only employee at work that has any knowledge of French which often comes in handy since we get lots of tourists from Quebec, so sometimes I get the chance to practice speaking at my summer job!)
     3. Spend any free time (on nice days) at the beach! This past weekend was the first time this summer that I had a day off on a day that it was actual beach weather, and it was perfection! It reminded me how much I absolutely adore the beach- it is truly one of the things that I miss the most when I'm in Charlotte. Once Maine starts getting steady warm weather I seriously want to be spending as much of my free time as possible outdoors and at the beach! I know that I won't regret it. :-)


     Do you have any goals for this month?


     Stay tuned tomorrow for what might be one of my favorite outfit posts yet- the photographs were taken by my friend Shara of Shara Lynn Photography and she absolutely outdid herself this time!


     xoxo Miss ALK

June 10, 2014

OOTD: A day at the beach.










Cover-up: Talbots || Bikini: Victoria's Secret || Shirt: Forever 21 || Sunglasses: Deb || Hat: Target || Necklace: {local boutique} || Earrings: Forever 21 || Beach bag: {old} 


     This past Sunday was my first day off from work that was finally nice! It got into the low 80s which is hot for Maine, and was the warmest that it's been so far this year. After a wonderful morning at church I headed to the beach with my dad! He took these pictures for me (I'm quite impressed with how they turned out!) and later on I met up with some of my high school friends and we had a great afternoon. I just love beach days, and I love being from a coastal town!! The beach that these pictures were taken on is right in my town. :-) 

     Fun story about the beach bag that I'm using: it's actually from Japan! One of my best friends during high school was Japanese foreign exchange student named Anna. This tote bag was a Christmas gift from her one year- the designs on it are cosmetics!! It's too cute, and I love telling people it's from Japan! 

     I went back to the beach with my best friend Tim yesterday morning... the two of us are total beach bums! I plan to spend as much time at the beach this summer as I can, I miss it a lot when I'm in Charlotte! Expect to see that on my June goals blog post... which should be up later this week! ;-)


     xoxo Miss ALK