I will survive

Migraines, headache, survival

 

Hey there. Long time, no blog.

“Where have I been?” you ask?

The main reason I took a random leave of absence from the blogging world was my health. I have mentioned before that I have struggled with migraines for the last several years. During the month of December I had three blissful weeks without a migraine. But once January started my migraines were back and were the strongest they have ever been. I felt like I was barely functioning.

I had a good visit with my Neurologist at the beginning of February. Unfortunately, there’s not much more he can do. I will be getting another MRI done in the near future just to make sure that nothing has changed since my last one. My doctor also prescribed another medicine that I could take up to 7 times per month. I ended up not picking this prescription up because a.) the side effects are terrible (I have taken it before) and b.) it was almost $120 for 7 pills.

Other events have also played into my break. I did check one super exciting thing off of my 1st quarter goals which I will be sure to share soon! I am a bit behind on my 2nd quarter goals but hopefully they will be up soon too.

This post was mostly to let you guys know that I’m still here and I still care about my little piece of the internet. I’m just struggling with things that I can’t control. Hopefully my regularly scheduled content will be back soon.

Thanks for reading!

 

Lifestyle Blog, Life of Hayley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What It’s Like To Be An Introverted Blogger

Why I Struggle With Blogging - How To Survive When You Are An Introverted Blogger

Hey there,

Lately I have been asking myself a lot of questions:

Why do I struggle sharing my life with others?

Why am I so hesitant about telling people about my blog?

I obviously feel the need to share at least some of my life with the public, so why can’t I share it with people that I actually know?

The list goes on and on.

I am so tired of beating myself up over things that I can’t change or questions that I don’t have the answer to. I don’t know why I am the way that I am. All I know is that I struggle to make the changes that I feel I need to make.

I have said before that it is okay to be an Introvert. But it is SO hard living in world where everyone expects you to be an Extrovert.

As children we are forced to raise our hands in class because if we don’t the teacher will call us out in front of the class or we won’t receive any participation points. I always felt like I had to sit in the back of the classroom in order to be able to learn anything. Just because I am silent does not mean that I am not listening. In fact, when I am silent and not worried about being called on, I am actually learning so much more.

It is so important to understand the different types of personalities instead of trying to cram everyone into the same category. I, for one, am exhausted of people trying to tell me how to act or how to feel.

When you market yourself as a blogger, it seems to be assumed that you are outgoing and personable.

I struggle with blogging because I love the creative outlet but I hate being compared to everyone else. I hate trying so hard to fit in a box with everyone else when I feel so different.

I just need to keep reminding myself that it is okay to be an Introvert. And it is more than okay to be an Introverted blogger.

Does anyone else out there struggle with blogging?

Thanks for readings!

 

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Image via Unsplash

 

 

 

7 Things To Do After Getting Engaged

7 Things to do after getting engaged - wedding planning

Hey friends,

Welcome to Wedding Wednesday!

I don’t know about you, but the second I got engaged I was overwhelmed. I think a huge part of my anxiety was the fact that was transitioning back from studying abroad in London to life in Michigan. There were so many changes happening in my life that I couldn’t even begin the think about wedding planning.

Not only that, but I also felt very lonely. I was missing my study abroad friends and I was actually dreading telling family and friends about my engagement. I wanted people to be genuinely happy for us.

Brett and I waited a whole month before announcing our engagement to people other than our parents, grandparents, siblings, and our closest friends. We wanted to have time to celebrate together before being bombarded with questions.

 

7 Things to do after you get engaged

Here are a few of my suggestions for what to do right after you get engaged:

  1. Take a second to just enjoy the moment. For this one moment, it’s just the two of you who know that you have decided to spend the rest of your lives together (unless other people are there to witness your engagement). When we got engaged, Brett took me on a walk and videotaped my reaction. I am so glad that I can look back on that moment forever. I will always be able to remember my reaction, his words, and how I felt after I said “Yes!”
  2. Decide who you want to tell first and when. It all depends on your relationships, but I would recommend telling your parents, family, and close friends before announcing your engagement to the whole world. I personally don’t think that there’s a right or wrong way to do this. However, some of my extended family seemed a bit put off that I didn’t personally tell them the news before announcing it on Facebook. Only you can decide what is right for the two of you.
  3. Be ready for lots of different opinions. I struggled with this. I wanted everyone to be as excited and happy as I was! Instead, I felt lonely and let the lack on enthusiasm bring me down. So please take my advice on this one, if you are happy that is all that matters.
  4. Decide on a timeline. When do you want to get married? If you want to plan a wedding for some day in the very near future you will need to start planning right away. If you are like me and have over two years to plan, you can just sit back and enjoy at first.
  5. Think about your wedding at a very high level. In the beginning, don’t think too much about all of the details. Start by figuring out the basics like date and budget. From there, all of the other details will get figured out.
  6. Start saving. Weddings are expensive so the earlier you can start saving the better. Talk to your parents or any other family members or friends that have expressed the desire to help out paying for wedding expenses.
  7. Have fun! Enjoy the fun of being engaged because it won’t last forever! One of my biggest regrets is that I hated planning my own wedding. I would love to help plan someone else’s in the future because wedding planning should be fun!

Even though we were engaged for over two years the time still went incredibly fast. Try to enjoy the process as much as you can because hopefully you will only need to do it once! My biggest tip is to just have fun with each other.

Remember that at the end of the day you will be married to the love of your life. Not everything will go as planned and that’s okay! Some of my favorite memories from my own wedding happened because something didn’t go as planned. Enjoy the ride.

Thanks so much for reading! Let me know if you have any questions or ideas.

 

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Winter 2018 Skincare Favorites

Winter 2018 Skincare Favorite for Dry and Sensitive Skin

 

Hey friends!

I have been on a blogging kick lately. I just feel like I have so much that I want to share with the world for some reason. The topic that has been on the top of my mind this winter has been skincare.

Winter is Michigan can be brutal. It’s super cold and snowy and my skin is soooooooo dry. I also have very sensitive skin so I have to be super careful about what products I am using on my skin. I feel like I have tried a bit of everything and only a few products actually work.

 

Winter 2018 Skincare Favorite for Dry and Sensitive Skin

Lotions

  1. Trader Joe’s – A Midsummer Night’s Cream. Brett laughs every time he sees a bottle of this lotion, which is a lot because I have three bottles throughout our apartment and another bottle on my desk at work. This has been my favorite lotion for years. It never bothers my sensitive skin (I often get red rashes from lotions). This lotion is unscented, ph balanced, and contains a healthy dose of aloe. It’s not sticky or greasy and keeps my hands moisturized for hours. You also get a huge bottle for a very small price tag.
  2. CeraVe – Moisturizing Lotion. Brett bought me a bottle of this a few winters ago when I was still working in a restaurant. My hands were always so dry, cracked, and red. This particular lotion from CeraVe is unscented and great for people with sensitive skin!
  3. Kiehl’s – Ultimate Strength Hand Salve. My mom and sister bought me a bottle of this the week of my wedding as a pre-wedding gift. I used it on my wedding day all over my body and even brought it on the airplane to keep my skin moisturized on the long ride over to London. This lotion has become my favorite and I really need to buy another bottle. It was such a treat to receive this as a gift from my family as they know my insane struggle with my sensitive skin.
  4. Soap & Glory – The Righteous Butter. This has been one of my favorite lotions since I studied abroad in London in 2015. Soap & Glory was huge in the U.K. and just recently made their appearance in the U.S. I put this lotion on my hands ever night before bed and I wake up with silky smooth hands with zero irritation.

Winter 2018 Skincare Favorite for Dry and Sensitive Skin

Moisturizers, Serum, Toner

  1. Mario Badescue – Oil Free Moisturizer. I have been using this moisturizer constantly since 2014 and haven’t been disappointed! It is unscented and has ____ SPF which makes it great to use all year long. Before finding this product I had a really hard time finding a moisturizer that didn’t make my skin break out into a red, itchy mess.
  2. Yes to Coconut – Ultra Hydrating Facial Souffle Moisturizer. This was a recent Tj Maxx find that I decided to buy after reading a few promising online reviews. I wouldn’t say that this is the best moisturizer for people with sensitive skin because it is scented. However, this is great to us once a week as a pamper moisturizer. It is super hydrating and makes my skin feel brand new.
  3. The Body Shop – Vitamin E Night Serum. This is hands down my favorite skincare product. It has changed the texture of my skin and has made me feel so much more moisturized. One of my co-workers actually commented on how good my skin looked after a couple of weeks of using this! I put this on every night after I wash my face and wake up with smooth, hydrated, and happy skin.
  4. Clinque – Clarifying Lotion. I remember back in Middle School my mom bought me my first Clinque Skincare set. Since then I have used the brand on and off but have always loved every product that I have tried. Toner is an important part of my skincare routine and this one from Clinque is the best that I have found for winter. It is gentle, unscented, and great for combination/oily skin. I use this after washing my face twice per day.

 

Winter 2018 Skincare Favorites for Dry and Sensitive Sk

Lip Products

  1. Fizz & Bumble – Lip Scrub. I bought this on a whim at Ulta a couple of weeks before Christmas. My lips were so dry and chapped and I really wanted to find something that would help me get rid of all the pieces of flaking skin. This works wonders to relieve my lips of all the dry, uncomfortable bits and makes my lips feel so soft! Another bonus is that the sugar scrub tastes so good so it doesn’t matter if you get a little in your mouth.
  2. Kiehl’s – Lip Balm #1. Brett and I received samples of this lip balm on our flight over to London for our Honeymoon. This was only the second Kiehl’s product I had ever used and was blown away by the quality. This is a game changer for dry lips! I use it every single day and apply a healthy amount right before bed. A little goes a long way and the small sample bottle is still going strong. This stuff is a bit pricey but I know I need to force myself to buy the full size bottle!
  3. Nivea – A Kiss of Moisture. Another must have product for me. This stuff works great and I always have a few tubes laying around. I especially love Nivea because it reminds me of my Easter break adventures in Germany with my study abroad friends!
  4. Chapstick. My dad works at Pfizer so my family has always used Chapstick. I can pretty much guarantee that there will always be at least one tube in my purse at all times. I am a loyal Chapstick user because it never lets me down. Chapstick is super affordable and works amazing!

Winter 2018 Skincare Favorites for Dry and Sensitive Skin

Makeup

  1. Neutrogena – Hydro Boost Hydrating Tint. I wear very minimal makeup and only wear it during the work week. I like to look like I have put a bit of effort in my appearance but hate the feel of makeup. I honestly feel much better about myself when I’m not wearing makeup which is why I love this stuff so much. It evens out my skin tone and keeps my skin feeling super moisturized.
  2. Garnier – BB Cream. I love this BB Cream for the same reasons as the Neutrogena Hydrating Tint. This keeps my skin moisturized while evening out my skin tone. It is oil free and contains slicylic acid which is great for people struggling with keeping their skin acne free.

 

Extras

  1. WATER. Yes, in all capitals because water is that important. I’m not an expert but I know that our bodies are in a large percent made up of water. It is so important to keep our bodies hydrated which will lead to better skin. Go get yourself a 40 ounce water bottle and drink a couple of those per day. Your body will thank you.
  2. Humidifier. I bought Brett a humidifier for his birthday in November to help with his severe allergies and breathing problems. Not only is it a great fix for these things, it also works amazing for hydrating my skin. I wake up feeling so much mre refreshed.

 

I hope my suggestions help you find some new skincare favorites! Please let me know your favorite skincare products in the comments below.

As always, thanks so much for reading!

 

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P.S. One of my neighbors walked out while I was taking this pictures outside of our apartment and looked at me like I was crazy. To be fair, it was freezing cold outside.

 

Friday Introductions

 

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Hey friends!

Since I re-launched my blog in late 2017 after taking a year long break I figured now would be a great time to introduce myself to my new and old followers.

For starters, my name is Hayley, hence Life of Hayley. If I had to categorize my blog I would say that it is a “Lifestyle Blog”. I love to share my favorite products, books, travel, and most recently, wedding planning. Not only do I love blogging, but I also love reading other people’s blogs. I am also looking for new bloggers to follow!

I began this blog in November 2013 right when I was turning 20 as a way to document all of the things I wanted to accomplish before turning 25. It’s been four years and I am so proud with how far I have come! I will be 25 next fall and I feel more than ready. I have accomplished far more than I ever thought possible and am in love with the way my life is turning out.

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My biggest accomplishment was studying abroad in London in 2015. I was SO scared to move to London for a semester but it turned out to be the best decision. I made life-long friends and cherish the memories that I made along the way. London will always feel like home!

I graduated from college in April 2016 with a Bachelor of Business Administration. I majored in Electronic Business Marketing and minored in General and International Business. After I graduated, I began looking for a full-time job in my field. I ended up accepting a position at a financial company in September 2016. I expected to like the job but never expected to fall in love with it! I love my company, my co-workers, and the work that I am doing every day. I really feel like I am making an impact on my community and our client’s lives.

Wedding Planning - Wedding Pictures

On August 19th, 2017 I married my boyfriend of six years, Brett. Our wedding day went by so quickly but it turned out better than we could have ever imagined! We got married at a Lake where I spent most of my summers growing up. We were surronded with all of our favorite people; our friends, family, and co-workers. Everyone who joined us had made an impact on our lives in some way. It was so special to start our married lives with all of the people who we love the most.

Brett and I went on a two week Honeymoon in London directly following the wedding. It was just like coming home. Brett proposed to me in London so the city holds a special place in both of our hearts.

Now I am just enjoying life with Brett and our cat, Lucy. We live in a cute little apartment and love spending time with our friends playing trivia or old PS2 games. I love tea, The Crown, Harry Potter, and reading. I’m an introvert who greatly values my alone time. I am also a Target addict and a wannabe interior designer.

Welcome to my little corner of the internet. I hope you stay awhile!

 

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Introducing Our Wedding Series

Wedding Planning Series - Planning Your Wedding, Step-By-Step Guide

 

Hey there!

I have been doing some serious blog post planning. 2018 is going to be a great year for Life of Hayley! I took a long look at the things I am interested in and the first thing that came to my mind was wedding planning.

Since wedding planning is still so fresh in my mind I thought I would do a blog series about all things wedding! I know not everyone is interested in this topic so I will be sure to post about a lot of other things too.

For this wedding series, I am thinking about breaking the posts up into two different categories:

 

  1. Wedding Planning. I spent SO much time on Pinterest and Google researching wedding planning as well as attending various wedding fairs. I figured that it would be fun to share some of my research in addition to my experiences during the wedding planning process. Posts could include dress shopping for the Bride and Bridesmaids, planning the ceremony (we wrote our ceremony ourselves), creating a wedding playlist, creating a guest list, etc.
  2. Our Wedding. I thought it would be fun to share all of the little moments leading up to our wedding in addition to our wedding day and honeymoon. The week leading up to our wedding was so much fun! I loved seeing everything come together and having all of our friends and family come to town to celebrate us. Maybe Brides-To-Be will be interested in reading about our wedding experiences but these posts will also be great for Brett and I to look back on one day.

 

Please let me know if there’s anything you would like me to talk about during this wedding series! I would love to know if you have any questions or concerns related to wedding planning. Brett and I were engaged for over two years so I had a lot of time to research wedding planning.

Thanks so much for reading and please stay tuned for more posts coming up soon!

 

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Book Review – I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives

I Will Always Write Back Book Review by Caitlin Alfirenka & Martin Ganda

 

Hey friends,

I am back with my first book review of 2018! One of my New Years resolutions is to read more so I figured I’d start out the year with a review of my favorite book of 2017, I will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives. I can honestly say that this book changed my way of thinking and made me reflect on the changes that I can make in order to give back to my community and make an impact.

This book was a recommendation on one of Jansen’s (Everyday Reading) blog posts. I was initially drawn to the book because one of my co-workers is from Zimbabwe and I have always enjoyed hearing his stories about growing up. He talked about the reason he went into Finance was because of the Financial crisis that occurred while he was growing up in Zimbabwe. He came to America to learn all he could with the goal of going home one day and using his experiences in finance to make a positive impact. This book goes into detail about the same Financial crisis that my co-worker experienced.

 

I will Always Write Back by Caitlin Alfirenka & Martin Ganda

 

I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives by Martin Ganda and Caitlin Alifirenka with Liz Welch

 

The New York Times bestselling true story of an all-American girl and a boy from Zimbabwe and the letter that changed both of their lives forever.

It started as an assignment. Everyone in Caitlin’s class wrote to an unknown student somewhere in a distant place.

Martin was lucky to even receive a pen-pal letter. There were only ten letters, and fifty kids in his class. But he was the top student, so he got the first one.

That letter was the beginning of a correspondence that spanned six years and changed two lives.

In this compelling dual memoir, Caitlin and Martin recount how they became best friends –and better people–through their long-distance exchange. Their story will inspire you to look beyond your own life and wonder about the world at large and your place in it.

 

Martin was from a small village in Zimbabwe. He greatly valued his education but his family struggled to pay for his schooling. Caitlin was your normal 12 year old from Pennsylvania. Her troubles included boys, clothes, and friends. They started writing letters to each other because of a school assignment.

It took a while for Caitlin to realize just how hard Martin’s life was becoming. His worries were vastly different than his. She would send gifts, $20 here and there, that would feed Martin’s family and send him to school. The books spans years and details the daily struggles, and what Martin had to overcome in order to get his education and take care of his family.

I read this whole book in under 24 hours. I could not put it down and I could not go to sleep until I knew that everything was okay. “Wow” is the only word that comes to mind when I think about the experience I had while reading. It was thought provoking, emotional, and I was honestly cheering Caitlin and Martin on as I read. I felt invested in the outcome of the book.

As an American, I know I am lucky. I am lucky to have grown up with a roof over my head, food in the cupboards, two parents with jobs, and a free public education. It is very easy to take all of these things for granted. We see the news and hear about the troubling times in other countries but we may never have to directly deal with any of these issues. This book puts everything into prospective.

I could say so much more but I will just leave you with this:

One letter changed Caitlin and Martin’s life. One book changed mine.

As always, thanks so much for reading!

 

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