What I’m Currently Obsessing Over: March Edition

This past month has been a whirlwind, but I’ve found some super amazing finds along the way. So naturally I thought I would share them with you guys, because what else is this blog for than to rant and rave?

R.Riveter: The Hobby

In honor of International Women’s Day, R. Riveter highlighted The Hobby which is my newest bag from them. I’ve already used this bag for multiple outings, and I’m obsessed with the emerald green color of mine. It perfectly matches my Slytherin heart. The Hobby was named after Mrs. Oveta Culp Hobby who was the first secretary of the U.S. Health Department, Education and Welfare, first director of the Women’s Army Corps, and a chairperson of the board of the Houston Post. Basically she was a BAMF.

Koe-Zee Embroidery 
I just bought one of these beautiful embroidery hoops and it is just so perfectly perfect. Obviously I bought the one with the middle finger and the roses, but there are a lot more *cough* mild designs as well. What I really love about these designs is that she’s PNW local, and obviously I can’t emphasize supporting local small businesses enough.

Sock Panda (sponsored)

Fun fact: I wear super weird socks with my normally all black/neutral wardrobe pretty much every day. I was super happy that Sock Panda sent me some socks to try out, mainly because I love having fun and weird socks on under my 9-5 business wear, but also because the mission of the company is really cool: For every pair of socks purchased, another pair is given to homeless shelters, low income senior centers, hospitals, and under-privileged classrooms throughout the country. Also, they sent me dinosaur socks and how can you argue with that?

Paper and Slate Candles

So yes, I’m a huge literary nerd (especially classic literature) and when I found out that Paper and Slate was going to be creating candles based off of characters I just about died. Currently I have the Elizabeth Bennet candle, and the Emily Dickenson (my favorite!). I’ll probably end up grabbing another one once these melt into oblivion based off of me burning them nonstop.

Note: You should also check out Edgar Allan Poe’s Murder Mystery Dinner Party…because I love it. Also, The Case of the Guilded Lily. Okay, I’m done.

Arbitrary Muse Comics

I found out about these ladies a couple years ago, and when I saw them at Comic Con this year I knew I needed to buy all of the things. I think I walked away from there with four comics and some other swag. It was awesome. What I love the most about these comics is that they’re inclusive both on the race and sexual spectrum. It really is a breath of fresh air and I couldn’t love their historical take on storytelling any more.

What are you guys currently obsessing over? Let me know in the comments! 

One Glass Of Unicorn Blood: Shaken, Not Stirred


If I was Voldemort, art would be my unicorn blood.

Okay, okay. Kinda gross and sort of dramatic. But it’s true!

Before you walk away gagging, let me explain: 

Art is my life blood and keeps me sustained.

And while it doesn’t require a life long curse, it does require a lot of sacrifice. How often is that the case, though? The things we love, the things we are passionate, what makes everything ‘just feel right’ comes at a price.


Here I am, sitting the morning after a show I painted at, and I can barely keep my eyes open. I slept a full 7 hours, but this is one of those moments when I’m blatantly aware that I am no longer the college freshman who did homework until midnight, then sprung out of bed at 6am for work the next morning.

Lately, I’ve been VERY aware of my own limitations.

And let me tell you, it’s a feeling that’s pretty upsetting and kind of annoying. I hate being limited. I hate not being able to do every. single. thing. that pops into my head. I want to travel everywhere, live on Twitter, blog everyday, paint everything, work 80 hours a week and still have time to maintain healthy relationships and exercise 7 times a week.

Wouldn’t that be nice? If only I wasn’t human.

The reality is – I have limits. And I don’t think enough of us admit that. I’m not talking about being lazy, so don’t think leaning back in a pile of potato chips on the couch, while streaming soap operas, is what I’m talking about.

I’m talking about good ole-fashioned lack of ability to have more hours than life provides.

And while I know you gentlemen feel this way, as well – I’m going to call out the pressure that we, as women, feel to be EVERYTHING.

A lot of the time it feels like I need to be the perfect career woman, the perfect blogger, the perfect girlfriend, the perfect daughter the perfect roommate, the perfect friend, the perfect writer, the perfect editor. Oh, and also volunteer every weekend, be devastatingly fit, and have all my student loans paid off like 10 years ago.

(NOTE: I wasn’t even in college 10 years ago)

The point is, this is INSANE.

And I’m calling it.

There is no way to live up to this constant standard of perfection, and while I do very strongly agree that healthy life = happy life. Let’s reevaluate what that means.

Not to compare the U.S. to France, again, buuuuuuuuut…

In France women are not perfect mothers. They don’t have to be, and honestly I don’t think they want to be. Motherhood is just one piece (like being a vegetarian or a yogi) that makes up who they are.

In France there are days and days of vacation time when people literally sit around and “do nothing.” Or, to be specific, they lay around in gardens and on lawns and in front of amazing buildings that look like movie backgrounds.

In France you work so that you have more time to enjoy your life. Not so that you can pay back student loan gods who hold you in shackles for 40 years.

Obviously there are problems with any society, and France is not immune. But the overarching culture is sometimes storybook-esque.

Sometimes that drove me crazy, when I was living there. But now, I think I’m starting to get it.

I’m starting to understand that there’s no way to win in this American system.

Last weekend I got to hear some of the most successful people I can think of talk about their success, and guess what? They still don’t feel like they’ve “made it.”

Why? Because we’re holding ourselves to an impossible standard.

Okay, now the happy part:

We don’t have to live this way. We don’t have to do everything and be everything. In fact, I don’t believe we were ever meant to. courtney-e-martin-quoteLet’s refocus for a minute.

One of my favorite quotes is by author Courtney E. Martin, who wrote a fantastic book called Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters: The Frightening New Normalcy of Hating Your Body.

“We are a generation of young women who were told we could do anything and instead heard that we had to be everything.”

Every time I read this quote, it’s like a slap in the face and a breath of fresh air.

This has been resonating with me a lot, lately, as I try to tackle 60 hour work weeks while maintaining a semi-normal life outside of my 3/4 jobs. It’s not easy. But I do my best, and I’ve decided that that is enough. I might not be producing my best ever art, or updating my social media/Etsy more than once a month but that’s okay. I’m still pressing forward.

Can I get an amen?

Okay, but really. I AM a huge advocate of hard work. But I also think it’s really important that we realize — we are not robots. We’re divinely created temples. And temples are places to be valued and loved.

So, today, wherever you are in life, that you’re reading this, just know that it’s okay not to have “it all together.”

I give you permission to be tired. To be a little messy. To be a little human. And to love your life, and yourself a little more.

Love extravagantly. Be kind to one another. And…

Five Ways Traveling Has Changed Me

My favorite thing about traveling is how much it challenges me to grow as a person. It’s nearly impossible for me to leave a place and not be changed by it in some way – a characteristic, which convinces me that, in order to fully discover myself, I need to continue to travel and see the world. There are several ways that I’ve already seen my outlook on the world change from traveling! Here are my top 5!

 1.     THE FOOD I EAT


One of the first things people discover about me is that I have a dictionary/list of allergies. Most of them have to do with food, so growing up I never experimented with different kinds of food (in case I accidently killed myself). It was such a huge surprise to me when I traveled to India and found out I can eat 98% of the food there! Before then, I figured if it wasn’t “All American” AKA steak and potatoes, I probably couldn’t eat it.  Now Indian food is my absolute favorite, and I’m so much more open to trying new types of food (Haggis, anyone!?), no matter how weird they sound!

2.     HOW I DRESS 


When I bought my first tartan skirt in Scotland, it was a proud moment in my life. I love traditional anything, and being of Scottish decent, I love connecting with my roots. A little Tartan power isn’t something I usually rock, but now that I’ve worn it, I love it so much.

In India I also picked up another FAVORITE trend: henna. I’d seen it before, being from the hippie town of Seattle, but there was something so much more appealing about getting henna done in the country where it was born. Henna is one of my favorite adornments and something I “put on” every chance I get.


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When I was traveling through the UK, Veterans Day occurred. As an American, there are certain rituals I’m used to in recognition of the holiday, but being in the UK really made, what is a mediocre holiday here, into something so much more impactful for me.


 November 11th 2013 (Journaling on a train from Glasgow to London)

 “Today I saw 3 Van Gogh paintings, which was absolutely breathtaking. How can paint and canvas cause you to feel so many emotions and experience so many stories? I guess it’s true that a picture is, “worth a thousand words.” I think yesterday was the first time I ever felt like, seeing something done, my heart said, “ That’s what I want to do!” I want people to experience the narrative of their own lives through the paintings I create. I want to write a story about social justice, war and conflict without ever having to type a word…. Photography is great, but there’s something uniquely beautiful about paint and canvas speaking of the greater issues of our world.”



There’s something eye opening, heart breaking and completely revitalizing about being in a place where you can’t understand a word anyone is saying. It’s confusing and frustrating and you have to realize, perhaps for the first time, that you (AMERICA) are not the center of the universe.

Being vulnerable and uncomfortable is so incredibly humbling, and so entirely necessary to gaining compassion for those around you in your every day life.

Before I left for India I felt like God really kept pushing the verse 2 Samuel 6:22. In it, David, being ridiculed for obediently praising God, says, “Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this, even to be humiliated in my own eyes!”

Be a little uncomfortable. It’s amazing how empowering the experience will make you, and those you encounter in similar situations, from there out.