Exercise

SOLO DATE IDEAS TO DEEPEN YOUR SELF-CARE

Good morning, and happy Friday!  By reader request, I am sharing some of my favorite solo-date ideas today!  Whether you're single or in a relationship, I feel like taking time to do things for yourself deepens your self-care on such a rich level (here is a fun example).  Self-care is so important, bcause it nourishes your mind, body, and spirit, while helping you rejuvenate! I like to compare self-care to the airplane demonstration.  Do you know which one I'm taking about?  When the flight attendant tells you that you need to put on your oxygen mask first, before helping others.  Well, self-care is so similar!  We must take care of ourselves (on an inner and outer level), before we can take care of others.  Let's dive in to some examples of some of my favorite solo date ideas!

blur-old-antique-book-largeHead to your local bookstore

One of my absolute favorite things in the world is going to a bookstore (or my local library), getting a cup of coffee, and finding a cozy spot to curl up with a book.  This is SO fun for me, but also really relaxing.

Volunteer

There is nothing more fulfilling then giving of yourself with pure intention.  Plus, you end up meeting amazing people!  Some great places are local soup kitchens, The Boys and Girls Club, your spiritual center, and city organized events (beach clean-ups and the like).  I've also used Volunteer Match in the past for some really fun opportunities.

restaurant-coffee-cup-cappuccino-largeHead the coffee shop (or your own kitchen)

So simple, so perfect!  Even though coffee has caffeine, there is something about it that is so relaxing to me.  Plus, coffee brings me so much JOY!

pexels-photo-largeDo something creative

Whether it's attending a local concert or going the museum, or picking up the paintbrush at home, creativity sparks so much happiness and brings so many therapeutic feelings (for me anyhow).

Indulge in some pampering

Ahhh!  There is nothing like relaxation!  Treat yourself and get a massage, facial, manicure, or pedicure.  Or, go all out and spend a day doing it yourself at home!  I love having spa days! :)

pexels-photo-12346-large (1)Sweat it out

Take a walk, attend a local fitness class, do yoga in your living room.  Sweating is good for the body, and great for the mind!

Watch a movie

Who says you need to have a date to go the theater?  I've seen plenty of movies at the theater by myself, and it's fun!  If that's not your thing, curling up on the couch is just as great!  PLUS, you can wear your jammies!

creative-desk-pens-school-largeTake a class

Into ceramics?  Try taking a pottery class at your local city college or ceramics studio?  Have you wanted to learn Photoshop, but just haven't done it?  There are classes online!  You're never too old (or young) to continue learning!

Go exploring

Explore your own city!  Even if you have lived somewhere for yearssss, I'm willing to bet that there is still a restaurant or park that you haven't been to.  Go check it out!

I hope these ideas spark some inspiration for you!  How do you like to take care of yourself? What are some of your favorite solo-date ideas?

xo.  Jen

WEEKEND RECAP #35

Good morning, friends!  Did everyone have a nice holiday weekend?  Mine was really great, but I have to admit, it was really difficult to wake up this morning.  I was sleepy! photo 5My weekend started on Wednesday at noon (my office closed early), which was SO nice!  I ran errands that day, and started prepping for Thanksgiving.

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photo 1Thanksgiving was amazing!  We hosted, but it was a total group effort food wise.  Everything was delicious!  Here is a photo of our group on Thanksgiving.  My Mom and Dad accidentally got cut out of the group photo, but there is a cute one of them to make up for it.  :)

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photo 1Friday we went to Ventura, and completely relaxed at my parents house all day.  It was just what we all needed!  Saturday morning I met some girlfriends for coffee and a beach walk.  It was a gorgeous day, but the conversation was even better.  Isn't quality time with friends the best?!

We had a memorial service to attend on Saturday afternoon, and while it was very sad to lose a loved one, the service was beautiful.  I was so happy to have been there.

photo 3After the service I had an appointment to get my hair done.  I cut 8 inches off!!!  This is a huge deal for me, as I've had long hair for years.  I loved my long hair, but I am totally digging the short, simple cut.  So bouncy and fun!

photo 2 Sunday was church, then afterwards we all went downtown to do some small business shopping.  So fun!  After that, we headed back to Pasadena to unpack, and unwind.  As you can see, Charlie was quite chilly when we got home!  HA!

All in all, it was a FABULOUS holiday weekend!  I hope you all had a great one, and know how very grateful I am for each and every one of you!

xo.  Jen

 

 

 

WEEKEND RECAP #33

Happy Monday!  How was your weekend?  Did you celebrate Halloween?  My weekend was very full, but really fun, too.  I have LOTS of photos, so I'm jumping right into it! photo 1

photo 1After work on Friday we jumped in the car and headed to Ventura!  My Dad's birthday was earlier in the week, so we went out for sushi that evening to celebrate.  My rainbow roll was delicious!

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photo 3Saturday morning, Greg, Charlie, and I went down to the beach.  It was a STUNNING day! The water was super glassy, and the sun was shining beautifully!  Greg decided to take a bunch of photos, and I am SO glad that he did!  He got some really great shots!  After our walk, we went and had a breakfast burrito on the pier (which ended up holding me over for the majority of the day).

photo 3Saturday afternoon I met up with some friends.  Starla and I have been best friends for 18 years (CRAZY how time flies), and I have know her cousin Jo for just as long, and we're all great friends!

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photo 1Saturday evening we went to a Halloween party.  Greg was a priest, I was a nun, and Charlie was a dinosaur.  My mom was the cutest kitten ever, and my dad was a USC coach.  :)

photo 2Sunday was church, lunch at Spencer Makenzie's (I got the ahi burger, and shared my fries with everyone), visiting with more friends, then heading home.  We spent the rest of the evening snuggling on the couch, and going to bed early (time change got me all mixed up, haha).

All in all, another fantastic weekend!  Tell me about yours!

xo.  Jen

WEEKEND RECAP #32

Good morning!  How was your weekend?  Mine was great!  I'll tell you all about it, but first I want to share the purpose behind why I do a "Weekend Recap."  The main reason is because I love the idea of sitting back and giving gratitude for the special times that I have, and get to share with others.  Whether it is a specific event, or just a yummy meal, it's all special to me. The second reason is that I don't share too much of my personal day-to-day life during the week, so it's fun to do a recap of what went on over the weekend. Okay, on to the weekend!

photo 1Friday evening was spent at home, turning the living room into a movie theater.  :)  We have an extra futon mattress that we brought out with a bunch of fluffy pillows and blankets, put on our pj's, and totally vegged.  It was so awesome to just relax!  I made stove-top popcorn (so simple) for us later, and we watched The Newsroom (our current fave).photo 3

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photo 2Saturday morning we all took a nice walk to Peet's for coffee, and ended up getting a bagel next door.  So weird, because normally I am not a bagel person (too much grain), but this is now the second time a bagel sounded perfect.  And it was!  I got a plain bagel with lox and all the fixings. So delicious!

photo 5For lunch we had the best salads!  So yummy!

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photo 2Saturday night we went to the Foo Fighters concert with friends.  They were given tickets (AMAZING seats) and asked us to go.  The show was absolutely incredible!  Definitely the best concert I have ever been to (and I've been to my good share).  We jammed, danced, and had the best time.  I feel really grateful!

photoSunday morning was spent doing a few things around the house and making a TJ's run.  My bestie Emma came to visit in the afternoon, and we had such a nice time chatting, sipping champagne, and having tostadas (her fave of all my dinner recipes, HA!).  Too funny, because we had matching manicures unbeknownst to us!  :)

All in all, another fabulous weekend!  May you all have a lovely week!

xo.  Jen

8 SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP THE PLANET

Happy Earth Day, beauties!  I woke up feeling extremely grateful for where I live, and not just in a literal sense.  Yes, I love my house, but planet earth is what we all call home.  Earth is where I get to live.  I can swim in oceans, and climb in trees.  I can travel, visit beautiful places, and explore.  I get to meet people from different lands, that speak different languages.  I can try new foods that are grown and prepared in amazing, delicious ways.  How freaking awesome is that?! Unfortunately, through another perspective, day after day we hear about all sorts of terrible things that are happening to our planet.  Whether it be a major drought happening in our own home state, a natural disaster, global warming, or something else.  I am not here to be Debbie Downer, but I am here to do my part in sharing what we can all do to help save our planet, one step at a time.  This Greek proverb is great for both Earth Day, and each day after, "A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in."

eathHere are 8 Simple Ways to Help the Planet:

  1. Ditch the plastic bags!  Use a cute, eco-friendly tote each time you go to the grocery store.
  2. Recycle!  Yes, we hear this one often, but how do we do it?  Sort your trash vs. recyclable items.  For more information on this, read here.
  3. Minimize the use of your automobile.  Bike or walk to work (great for your health, too), or carpool with a buddy.
  4. Reduce your water intake.  Especially for us Californians!  Turn off your water when your brushing your teeth, when it's yellow let it mellow, fix your leaky toilet/sink/shower/tub, have a drought toletrant lawn, take your car to the car wash (they typically use half the amount of water that we would use at home), only run your dishwasher when it is absolutely full, go vegetarian at least once a week (1,800 to 2,500 gallons of water go into producing a single pound of beef, not to mention the health benefits, and that you'll be helping animals).
  5. Minimize your plastic by using reusable bottles, lunch boxes, cutlery, napkins, etc.
  6. Compost.  Reducing the amount of solid waste means that we are taking up less space in our landfills.  PLUS, compost is a great natural fertilizer, and is super easy.
  7. Online billing is the way to go.  Not only is it easier, but think of all the trees we can save!
  8. Shop local!  For food, head to your farmer's market or local CSA.  In general, this helps the environment, but also financially supports your community.

These are just a few simple ways we can give back, and help support the earth we all live on. What are some ways you like to help our planet?

Have a great Earth Day!

xo.  Jen