Oct 29, 2011

Vegan meal + game night

Some of my friends & I love home cooked meals & game nights.
So why not have both in one night?

Last time we cooked butternut squash lasagna & played "Bang." This time we cooked scalloped potatoes and eggplant bacon using this recipe (which happens to be vegan) and played Apples to Apples! My goal this month was to not eat meat...and that's why my good friend Melissa has been introducing me to yummy vegetarian & vegan options. [Sidenote: She's a vegetarian!] Even after I start eating meat again, she's probably the best person to cook with vegetarian meals with because she's great at it. ;) We're going to accomplish baking next time, VEGAN baking. Aren't Melissa's the best ;)

Here's a glimpse into our fun-filled evening last Sunday!

I hope all of you are having a wonderful weekend!
Rumors (and weather.com) say it may snow here in Boone tomorrow.
I don't think I'm quite ready.

Just a heads up, I have a ton of ideas for future posts and plans for this blog. I'm hoping I can implement them and squeeze it all in with the limited 24 hours per day!

Thank you to everyone who reads this little blog.
Seriously though. I've already made some great friends and connections.
Hopefully we can all meet one day :]

Oct 27, 2011

October Follow Fest!

It's a link par-TAY.
Welcome welcome new readers :]
Make sure you check out all the fellow October Fest readers + links! Join the partay!

Autumn is my absolute favorite season. Living in the mountains is absolutely beautiful seeing the leaves change, however, this season is short-lived here. [Thanks winter] I wish I could say that my October has been filled with pumpkin carving, pumpkin-flavored everything, fall festivals and watching scary films, but due to college I can barely squeeze in time for breathing! (Kind of, but not really)

SO for this link-up party I wanted to share with you a little recap of my past Halloween costumes, because admit it, it's fun to dress up as someone completely different :] I am not one of those college students to ....you know, "dress up" as a you-know-what, instead I wear costumes that a 5-year-old probably wore too. Isn't that the best part though?


For a nice little Halloween treat, one of my favorite singer/songwriters has her song "Zombie" as a free download on her site in spirit of Halloween. Check it out!
& thank you to those who commented on my last post. Just keep the Funtila and Larsen family in your prayers.

Another lovely treat? A Dose of Lovely is hosting a MITTENS giveaway. Click to check it out.

Oct 25, 2011

Joy Funtila Larsen

The world misses you Tita Joy,
but you are forever in our hearts.

I have been meaning to write this post for weeks, but it just didn't seem real + I couldn't find the right words. I still can't because there are none. 
That October day, one of the most kind hearted people I have ever known left our world for another. She left us a beautiful baby girl named Caitlin Marie Joy Larsen, but she will forever stay in our hearts and in our memories. Here's a little message I would like to leave for her:

Dear Tita Joy,
 In life there is struggle, deceit, darkness and then there are people like you.

Just yesterday I could picture my adolescent self running around chasing boys while you and the other Filipina instructors tried to calm us down enough to teach us choreography for a dance. I remember always loving when you taught us. You were always so kind and so patient and you really did dance beautifully. At a young age I knew how kind hearted of a person you were. Everyone knew. Every hug you gave me was filled with warmth and care and even if it was never said, I knew you loved each and everyone of us. I never had a chance to tell you how much I looked up to you as a little girl, I still do. I remember your patience, your modesty, your smile and your big heart. Thank you for being there while I was growing up. I know we haven't been in each others lives in the last few years or so, but you will forever remain in my heart and your family in my prayers.

I know they are struggling without you. Every person and life you touched is struggling.

I pray for your beautiful family. I pray for every person whose lives you've ever touched. I pray for Cade, Ian, Caitlin and pray they have as much strength as you did. I pray for Tito Carl who will continue the beautiful life you both created. It was difficult seeing them lose someone so loving and strong, but I know you're looking down and watching over them. I know you will do your best to protect them from any more of life's harm. Caitlin will grow up around one strong family and will be a great of a woman as you were. Don't worry, she is in great hands.

You touched lives through your kindness, your dance and your heart. You made a difference in this world and let it shine just a little bit brighter. Everyone truly misses you. 

In life there is beauty, struggle, happiness, darkness and then there is lost.
See you someday.

Infinite love,

a little guest post @ Tongue Tied in Awe

Today I am guest posting over at Danielle's blog at Tongue Tied in Awe!
I'm super excited about the post and I hope you all go check it out :]
Danielle is one of my favorite blogger friends + it's always a pleasure to guest post for such a lovely lady.

Here's a little glimpse into my guest post.

Hop on over there to find MORE photography + inspiration quotes to feel inspired today.

Have a great Tuesday loves.

Oct 24, 2011

a little restaurant called Our Daily Bread

I love my college town.
Living in Boone seems to get better by the day.
(this disregards the Winter days because I promise, in a few weeks I may not like Boone's weather so much...haha)

We have the cutest local restaurants, shops, record stores, bead shops, thrift stores + mountains to surround it all! Last Friday, I met up with my Her Campus AppState writers (who I absolutely adore) and we had a little writers meeting + excursion to local restaurant, Our Daily Bread. Their menu is FILLED with yummy sandwiches, soups, salads, vegetarian/vegan options and it will take you hours to decide what to order because everything and I mean everything sounds good. They strive to serve local and organic foods, which is always a plus, and the restaurant is absolutely beautiful with the brick walls, local art and exposed vintage ceiling tiles.

This is what I ordered:

Can you say yummy?

In other news, I have quite the full plate filled with classes, joining the Communication Honor Society Lambda Pi Eta, writing for www.mycollegeroadtrip.com, writing for HC AppState, working as a wine representative for Tar Heel Winery, picking shifts at Primo's and keeping up with the blogging world! However, I am blessed for the opportunities that have come my way and I am seizing all of them. That is not even half the things I have to manage but I am determined to be able to do it all! Sleep? No one remembers sleeping anyway ;)

Have a blessed week fellow readers!

PS. Just bought the Beirut album "The Rip Tide" on vinyl with my $5 coupon whoop! It's amazing. Absolutely amazing.
Also, one of my fav. bloggers + fellow button swapper, Dot In The City, is hosting an awesome giveaway! Check it out!

Oct 21, 2011

a little pink lemonade + a little yellow

First and foremost, if you know me at all, you must know that one of my favorite colors is yellow and today I was very loyal to my color. A week or so ago I was super lucky to win a giveaway hosted by Ilene of much love, illy (she's one of my favorite blogs!) + Paige of Pink Lemonade! I won a pair of rosette earrings made by Pink Lemonade, so naturally I chose yellow.

Just wanted to say to them:
I'm in love with my earrings!

So despite Boone's little weather tantrum, I figured I'd outshine the weather by wearing one of my favorite coats. At least I finally get to dig up my coat collection even if Boone tends me [literally] blow me away with her weather. Ah, and yes. My cheeks are no longer chipmunk size :]

Earrings: Pink Lemonade | Ring: Local shop in Atlanta | Coat: Old Navy | Boots: Rack Room Shoes | Skirt: Forever 21 | Flannel: JCPenny | Cardigan: Forever 21 | Bun: Inspired by windy weather/laziness/&Kourtney Kardashian
(Next time, I need to wear more on top of my head)

I never meant to blog about my outfits this much. It's honestly a really weird concept for me, but hey, things happen :]

Happy almost weekend everyone!

What's your color soulmate?

PS: I designed + added another button, redid my sidebar bio and redid the banner! I've also been working on my Flickr account, so once I get more photos organized I can FINALLY share with you all more of my photography.

Oct 20, 2011

a little project or two

Ah, it feels nice to finally breathe air that is not full of Sociology of Work & Organization terms + concepts! My roommate + I have spent the last few hours making up acronyms to remember these ENDLESS terms.

Anyway, here's a glimpse into a few projects I've been working on.
Since I've moved away from home, my mom likes to "dump" all my belongings from her apartment so that I can now take full custody of my "junk." Among those things, I found this frame that I decorated when I was probably 14. (My room used to be pink + I tried to draw a tree...) WELL, before completely tossing it, I realized that I could TOTALLY redo this and make it more [21 year old] Melissa friendly.

Here are the results:

Another wonderful project I'm a part of is The Small World Project, hosted by Bree over at The Art of Being Cool. It's week three so I've sent my third letter to Katie! I'm still awaiting my letter from Sasha this week. I've had such a great experience anticipating snail mail, learning about my fellow blogger friends + writing letters! Here's the two letters I received yesterday! One from the cute + creative Katie from Kitty Snooks and another from another sweet Katie :] Thank you both!


Aren't they so creative and cool? I knew Katie from Kitty Snooks would have a fabulously artsy letter...being in art school and all. I LOVE the way she wrote my name. I wish she could create a font so I could use that on everything! She was so sweet to try and send me a pin in the mail from Canada (since I collect them), but it got lost :( I am so touched though! She drew me a cute little Halloween-inspired illustration too! I loved how the other Katie made her envelope out of a math page! So creative. You two rocked my world yesterday!

Have a blessed Thursday :]

Ps. I've totally a-ddicted to Friday Night Lights. I can't wait to blog about it! I have 12 more episodes left! Yippee! Off to bed! I do need to have a functioning brain for my exam tomorrow.

Also! Got some new content up on Her Campus Appalachian State you need to check out -
+ Upcoming Movies You Don't Want To Miss [written by yours truly!]
+ Campus Celebrity: Aaron Simpson from New River Boys
+ 6 Fall Recipes Everyone Should Try [written by Laura]
+ Anxiety Answers for the Collegiette

Go on, read along!

Oct 19, 2011

a little thank you

Very recently the lovely Sandy from Sandy a la Mode hosted a giveaway with Maple Boutique and I got extremely lucky and won the $25 gift certificate to their cute boutique! I quickly visited their website and even though it was such a tough decision deciding what to get (in the lovely college budget that I currently have), I decided on this:

So, thank you Maple Boutique & Sandy a la Mode!
It's comfy, casual and can be fall/winter friendly paired with a long sleeve shirt.
Today I paired it with some wide legged jeans I bought from a thrift store in Wilmington!
(My face is still healing from the wisdom teeth surgery so no face pictures for now!)

Definitely visit Maple Boutique and find a little treasure like I did.

Happy middle of the week!

Oct 17, 2011

snapshots II


When all else fails, camera phone to the rescue!
Here's a little glimpse into my last week or two through my phone camera.

I think my cousin's glasses are awesome! So jealous of them. I wanted a picture with them because I felt like a hipster along with my precious dog Zoey. She lives in Raleigh with my cousin and Dad's girlfriend since I can't have her in college :(

Peanut Butter frozen yogurt with Heath Bar = YUM!
My friend Lena and I explored downtown Raleigh last weekend. Raleigh is where I grew up, but you definitely see it differently after you move away for college. I've definitely seen a new side of Raleigh I haven't before and downtown is continually prospering. We went to FRESH @5Points and ordered yummy frozen yogurt!

Some friends and I had some beer and appetizers at Mellow Mushroom and joined their beer club! My friend Kaleigh's beer made a tree :] How cool is that?

This is the successful butternut squash lasagna my friend Melissa and I cooked for our friends last Thursday. Here's the post with the other photos :]

Meet Zoey. My first love.
She is half beagle and half jack russell. She is sassy, lovable, gives the best hugs and has an attitude problem, but we love her :] Wish I could've taken her to college with me :(

Meet Pac Man! Boxer. Named after the Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao, whose nickname in the ring is Pac Man. He is the newest edition to the Vega family and an absolute sweetheart. I'll probably share more pictures of these lovable creatures soon.

Other than that, I've been in recovery after my wisdom teeth surgery and let's just say, it's going....alright. It definitely hasn't been the best experience but hopefully I'll feel like myself again! Drugs are no fun. I have made A LOT of progress watching Friday Night Lights! Finally on Season 2. I may be too embarrassed to say how many episodes I've seen so far....okay...I'll let you know. I started on episode 13 and now I'm on episode 57 (ah!) I know. Productive right? :)

Here's to feeling like myself again soon!

Oct 15, 2011

Homemade lasagna + game night

Sorry I haven't been posting as often. On Friday I had my wisdom teeth removed so I've been filled with oxycodone, moxicillin and Friday Night Lights! So far my recovery has been going pretty well with the exception of going in and out, being lethargic and swollen. I currently look like a chipmunk!

Here are some photos of Thursday night where a bunch of friends and we cooked homemade Butternut Squash Lasagna with this recipe. It was a successful! All of our friends enjoyed it. I definitely recommend everyone to check out the recipe. It was easy to follow and a hit at our little get together.

That night we also played a game called "Bang." Lots and lots of fun :]

Oct 11, 2011

Exploring downtown Raleigh with Lena

I absolutely love weekends.

Especially when they are filled with exploration, friends, celebration, frozen yogurt, thrifting and a camera to capture it all. Among other great things that have happened this weekend, I'll share with you a little photo blog about my adventures with my friend Lena! I met her via Her Campus and since she was visiting her grandparents in Raleigh and I finally got to go home for a weekend, we just had to hang out together :]

Photos of our adventure in the local antique shop Father & Son:

Here are some Her Campus articles you need to check out!

+ Stress Relieving Tips for the GRE (written by yours truly!)
+ The Lowdown on Guy's Style at ASU (collaborative article with all HC Writers)
+ Keepin' it Classy on Campus (written by Lena!)
+ 5 Steps to Starting Over After a Breakup
+ Ways to Feel Productive in 30 Minutes or Less!

Oct 6, 2011

it's the little things 004

Aisle to AlohaIt's that time of week again! Here I am linking up with Lindsay, who of course is one of my favorite bloggers. She even inspired an outfit of mine this week! Overall, it's been a pretty stressful week with school. I'm struggling to find balance between schoolwork, writing for Her Campus and just life in general. I'll find balance soon, for now, I'll just have to have take moments during my day is just breathe.

Lindsay is one of the cutest fashionable bloggers I follow! She lives in Hawaii and has the most gorgeous, colorful and fun outfits! Yesterday she had a post about how she transformed her dresses into skirts to enhance the variety in your closet! Check out her tutorial. She inspired me to do the same today.

Here is my dress turned skirt!

I bought this dress when I was 16, so I've forgotten where I bought it!
Necklace: handmade by me.
(skeleton key - antique store || charms - Bead Box, Boone)
Shirt: Forever 21
Here it is in dress form:

I also got to make homemade veggie sushi with my friend Drew.
It was long overdue and I'm glad we got to finally have some friend quality time!
Yummy good, great conversation and great company.
It was truly a nice break in the middle of my stressful week!

Hopefully things with school calm down and I won't be running on 4 hours a sleep.
This weekend I will be in Raleigh (FINALLY) even just a couple of days.

I almost forgot to mention the amazing giveaway I won to Maple Boutique through Sandy a la Mode!
That definitely made my week.
Also, Emily gave me the Versatile Blogger award, so I'll get to that asap! Thanks Emily!
Be sure to check out this giveaway from {long distance loving}!

What were the little things that made your week?
Don't forget to link up with Lindsay!

Oct 5, 2011

long overdue post

Sorry I haven't been updating as regularly!
You know, life just happens :]
Here's a quickie overview of the past days.

You should check it out :] It's "Small Ways to Save Money as an Appalachian Student" It's an article about the creative, yet smaller ways to save money! Saving money doesn't have to include savings account and ramen noodles. There are other ways, I promise. Read on to find out.

2. I also have my last article written for Appalachian's homepage up as well! It's about the Sustainable Development's trip to Madagascar this summer. My friend Logan attended so you should check out the story and read about this awesome trip they made!

3. Fall is beautiful and the leaves have definitely been changing colors. These photos were taken on campus of Appalachian State.

4. My trip to Atlanta was absolutely wonderful. It was one of my best friend's birthday's and it was wonderful being able to spend the weekend with her. I've met the best people in Atlanta. Seriously. I can't help but smile from everything that happened this weekend! I didn't take much photos because I was too busy embracing every moment, but here is me and the birthday girl :]

5. Giveaways!
My friend Emily is having a Sylvia Benson giveaway, so check it out!
I won my FIRST blog giveaway yesterday! It's the Pink Lemonade giveaway from much love, illy. I'm excited to get my pair of rosebud earrings! Yay for giveaways!

Also, Ashley is having an AWESOME giveaway! A total of NINE things! Check it out!

6. I'll leave you with a few snapshots!

1. My and my favorite fedora. Got called "fedorable." Haha how clever my friends :]
2. Atlanta - Wish I took more pictures of this great city.
3. $2.99 gas! I haven't seen this is in forever! Thank you South Carolina.
4. When I saw LION KING 3D! All this for $3.50! That's how move concession prices SHOULD be.

I'll be posting again sooner than later.
Thank you to all my wonderful blogger friends!