Wednesday, July 31, 2013

40 Days of Dating Project

A friend from work forwarded this to me and I'm hooked.  

I'm SO into this.  

 The"About." page probably explains it better, but two friends, both graphic designers living in NYC  [dream job] have dating issues they want to work on.  Jessica is a hopeless romantic who jumps into relationships head first while Tim tends to fear commitment and dates many girls at once.  They both decided to commit to a 40 day project; they have to see each other every day and reflect on their relationship through questionnaires asked by random friends.

Some of the best parts of relationships are those first few dates when you learn everything about one another.  This is even better because you get to read how both partners feel during the entire 40 day process of dating.  This project was completed in April but now after the two designers have added their own creations for each day, you are able to follow along.  I can't wait to see what happens at the end.  

Do you think they are still together?! 

Buzzfeed wrote a pretty great article about their project and Yahoo! News ragged on them for calling it art.  However you choose to think about it, I think it's a truly inspiring project.  
Both people delve into why they act the way they do in relationships, how they think about dating, and how past relationships have changed them.   

Love makes the world go round, don't you agree? 

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Falling for Fall

Falling for Fall

Falling for Fall by hilarybadger on Polyvore

Fall fashion is popping up everywhere and I dig it.

This season I'm loving booties, pom poms, olive green pieces, and black handbags.

Are you looking to try out a new trend this Fall?

PS.  New article up on Sweet Lemon Magazine this week!
Check out my recommendations for your last week on the Hill.

Monday, July 29, 2013

NEW! Intern Spotlight Series

I'd like to introduce a new series on Purple Flowers

Our first guest is Samantha from Samantha Elizabeth.  I recently wrote a piece about the Supreme Court for her blog which you can find here.  Sam is a good friend from Washington College who has had some AWESOME internship experiences in the past.  We recently both studied abroad and have spent a few years on the swim team together.  Read more about Sam here on her WashColl profile page, she rocks! 

I asked Sam a few standard questions about career development and then let her tell her own story about her experiences this summer and what she's learned from her internships. 

What new skills are you looking to obtain: " I'm always looking to be able to improve skills in myself that are on the weaker end, so being able to work with all different sorts of people, adapting (whether it be different personalities, different work environments, different projects), and, of course, I always want to work on being more efficient no matter what." 

What environment do you work in best: "I work best in more laid back environments, but I definitely need some sort of structure."

What's your favorite work outfit: "Well I work in retail, so I've gotten a lot of dresses from that, and I love wearing them. They're really comfortable and easy to throw on, maybe add a blazer if it's colder in the office. I always accessorize. I have this gold watch that I pair with everything--stacked bracelets, necklaces, etc. And shoe wise, I'm getting better at wearing heels more often, but I still love a dressy sandal or a classic flat since my main concern above all is comfort."

On Interning by Samantha 

"I’ll be the first person to tell you, I hate doing anything for free. Volunteering is one thing, but actually taking time (and extra energy) to work somewhere and not get paid will forever sound highly unappealing to me. McDonald’s may have exhausted me and made my teenaged acne worse, but at least I got paid minimum wage for plopping together those double cheeseburgers and scraping dried mustard off the bottom shelves. 
With that in mind, you can imagine how I felt about the idea of an internship upon entering college. However.
I have found my experiences as an intern totally invaluable. Why? Because it pretty much pushed me off the straight and narrow path I had been on since middle school and showed me what was actually important to me and my personal career happiness. I was originally gung ho about going into public relations and marketing, maybe specializing in social media since I was attempting to style blog before style blogging was a thing (don’t look, they were pathetic attempts!). As a sophomore I landed an internship with this great company that did marketing for mostly pharmaceutical companies, and I realized something.
I hated it. 
Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t hate the company, and I don’t hate marketing altogether, but I realized I could not see myself doing it for the next thirty to forty to fifty years of my life. An online internship with another great marketing company and a job working sales, and I knew this was not the life for me. I love Samantha Jones, but I am not and nor will I ever be her. 
And this leads me to my recent revelation. I want to work in publishing. Ideally I want to be a fulltime novelist like the guy from “Hey Arnold” complete with too much tea at three a.m. and a touch too many cats. Maybe not that extreme, but you get my gist. Until I get to that luxury point in my life, I want to be the person scanning over books and deciding, “Hm, this could be a bestseller” or, better yet, “This has got to be a contender for the Pulitzer.” I want to curl up with a manuscript in my office with my glasses on, tea steaming, and red pen in hand. Did I mention I’ve always been extremely picky about grammar? Like comma rules, semicolon usage, basic capitalization? I have a problem.
Anyhow, to put this dream into practice, I got an internship with Chesapeake Bay Magazine, doing editing work, and so far I like it a lot. The team behind the magazine is small and nice and very laid back. And the finished product is, of course, beautiful. For anyone who lives on the bay, they know it can be a beautiful place despite its problems. We just worked on the Cruise Guide, and I got to essentially travel to all these different ports while researching restaurants and shopping and visiting their websites. I never thought I’d want to go to Norfolk, VA until now. 
Also, getting to drive into Annapolis twice a week isn’t too shabby either."

Thanks Sam for being first up on my Intern Spotlight series!  I can't wait to showcase more awesome friends who have used their skills and experiences to have successful internships.

Have you had a cool internship and would like to share your story?  
Email me at

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Friday, July 26, 2013

Working Out on the Wall

I was skimming Pinterest this morning over coffee when I saw a load pinned workouts [shocker].  These were different.  No equipment, no gym, and they actually looked fun.   I was just complaining to my supervisor that no matter how many sit ups I do, I will always have a little belly.  In the peak of my swimming career swimming 2+ hours a day and running and lifting, I still had a little pouch tummy.  
The juice cleanse thing, yeah that ended by lunch time day one.  I love solid food and I can't be productive while I'm hangry.  I was back to running a lot [for like 3, days] but then there was this heat wave thing.  Now it's cold [go home, DC you're drunk] and I'm realizing that my days are numbered here on the Hill so I better start worrying about the museums and neighborhoods I didn't check out rather than how tone my legs are.  There's a gym back at college. 

But I found this really cool work out from that I had to share!  All you need is a wall.
If you're from D.C., you know the post Good Stuff feeling; you have to reevaluate your life after you eat their food.  

This will be me reevaluating my choices for the rest of the afternoon.  

This one doesn't look so bad, right? 

I'm kinda worried about this one; God did not bless me with balance.

Do you have an 'at home' workout regime? 
Does it work?  
Let me know!  

PS Check back on Monday for an exciting new series on Purple Flowers.
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Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Purple Flowers has been an evolving project. 
I'm always learning something new about webdesign, html, and editing. It has been so fun!  My sorority sister Sam from The Bits and Pieces Life is so talented and great at all things computers and design.  After hours of sending her blogs that I loved, she figured out pretty quickly that I loved minimalist looks and flat images.  She 'threw together' a template that she thought I might like[which I loved] and walked me through the steps to make my blog what I envisioned.  The best part, she's so cool & funny; the second best part was how EASY everything was.  I really enjoy learning new pieces of html.  

So in addition to my new design and layout, there's another new piece that I'm really excited to launch.

Link the link to check out a sneak peak of my style.  

Did you build your own blog? 
Did you read any books along the way or watch tutorials?
I'd love some suggestions!

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Monday, July 22, 2013

Royal Babe

With all the talk of the royal baby I thought I'd recap a few photos of my week in London last fall. 
During my semester abroad I spent my Fall Break with new pals & old in the best city I've ever been to.  
Check out some of my favorite moments.

My two sorority sisters that I hung out with in London!  

Ello from Westminster Abbey!

Rods Darling!

The only statue of George Washington in the UK!  

That week in London was one of the best of my life.  I will never forget the feeling of taking the Tube for the first time or walking on the South Bank by the Thames River at night.  I didn't even explore any of the famous museums while I was there; I simply wanted to soak up every inch of the city I could.   I definitely left a little piece of my heart in London for that short time.  I've never felt so comfortable or at home in a city.   I am counting down the days till I can go back.  

So welcome little Prince!  Can't wait to learn your name! 
Any guesses as to what the name will be?!

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Happy Monday kids! 

Today I pulled a few of my favorite things from two of the best online boutiques around. 

With thoughts of back to school comes fresh ideas of a new start!  
I moved back to school last January and hit the ground running.  I walked off the plane from Copenhagen, put my suitcases in my car, spent 30 hours at home and drove right back to college.  The most decorative things in my room last semester were my postcards from Europe.  This year I'm hoping to dress up my room with simple pieces to make it feel like home.

Make sure you check out their websites & blogs, they will no doubt give you a burst of creative inspiration on this sleepy Monday. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Missing CPH

A few friends from study abroad started up our old FaceBook message chain last night as I was falling asleep.  Randomly my roomie woke me up today by playing Ben Howard's "Old Pine."  I knew it was going to be one of those days; the 'I miss study abroad, & no one understands days.'  

When I visited Italy with my Dad over Christmas I did one of those double-deck bus tours.  It was awesome and it was a totally different perspective of Rome.  I fell deeply, madly, and passionately in love with Rome that day & all I want to do is go back.  It was hands down, the most beautiful place I've ever seen.  
With my iPod on, playing Mumford&Sons, I took as many videos as possible to remember what it felt like that day.  I made my Dad stay on with me for 2 whole tours.  Love ya Pops!

When I came home for the last couple days left in Copenhagen, I spent those 3 days wondering about the city.  My last day was absolutely gorgeous and I decided to walk around shooting videos all day.  While they are pretty shaky, it's still a pretty accurate depiction of my every day in Denmark.  I put it to "Old Pine" and it fit perfectly.  

As hard as it was to be alone 4,000 miles away for 5 months, it was the best experience I've ever had.  

Check out my video of Copenhagen below.

If you ever get the chance to go to Scandinavia, go. It is the most magical little place.  

Has anyone else studied abroad or spent a significant amount of time abroad? 
Jeg elsker dig, Kobenhavn! 

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Pulling Pins

Like the new header?  Still working out some kinks.
Check out some of my favorite things on the Pinterest right now! 

I love the Old Line State; every time I am carded it is a cold reminder that my permanent address is no longer in MD.  This chest will be mine one day.  

How 'fedorable' is this dog?  Puppies in hats?! Now thats a concept I can get behind.  

This feminine power suit look, which I would totallllly wear.  

And this wonderful reminder for every day which I need to print out for my cubicle/dorm/apartment.

Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest! 

Hope everyone had a happy Monday!  
Did everyone have a relaxing weekend?! 

Make sure you check out my first two posts on Sweet Lemon Mag;  Sharknado Style for the rest of your summer & a recap on the #Sharknado social media frenzy.  

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Friday, July 12, 2013

Exciting News

My my how things change.

Yesterday I woke up and kicked my funk to the curb.  
I woke up at 7, went for a run & got my supervisor breakfast and splurged for the large coffe all before coming to work for the day.  Boom.
  I was finally feeling like myself when, 
my inbox changed my mood.  

I've been following/reading/loving/drooling Sweet Lemon Magazine since its conception.  I was a big CollegePrep fan and was really inspired to start blogging, writing, styling, etc.  @SweetLemonMag put out a request for writers, I applied with no hope or expectation. 
That all changed yesterday when I got my email from @Paris [the editor-in-chief] that I had been selected as a Staff Writer.  
I just finished writing my first post and I'm still blushing.  #TeamAli

Make sure you check out their latest issue; it's their best yet! 

But wait, there's more.
I was accepted to be a member of CapFabb! CapFabb is an online blogging community for bloggers in the DC, NOVA, MD area.  Bloggers can collaborate, connect, and plan events together to network.  Through CapFabb we are able to connect with local business, designers, and bloggers.  It's a seriously cool group & I'm so honored to be a part of it.

Check out our members & apply if you're a blogger in the area.  

It's been a good end to the week to say the least!
I'm excited to relax, catch up on work, & visit with my family this weekend.

Did you have any exciting news this week?  Big weekend plans?! Tell me about it below! 

PS. Be on the look out for my first post on Sweet Lemon about the #sharknado [lol]
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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Off Day

Do you ever find yourself in a funk? 
You're just off and you're not really sure why?  

Well that's me this week.  There is no pressing issue in my life, I'm healthy and happy but I'm just off.  My usual spunk for the every day is not here and it makes it hard to focus at work or on anything at all.  But with situation comes opportunity, and that gave me the opportunity to figure out how to make me feel most like myself. 

I'm not sure if this will be my future go to, but for this week, it's working.

Something Habitual : I always feel a sense of accomplishment after a run, no matter how long.  I've always been an athlete, but not on land.  Throw me in the pool, no problem; land sports are tricky.  I recently found a passion for running this year.  It's a great twenty-something fad and I'm digging it.  Nike+ is also awesome and it always makes me want to keep running.  

Something Nostalgic: One of my absolute favorite movies is the Sound of Music.  I found the movie soundtrack on Spotify yesterday and I've been grinning in my cubicle all day.  I feel like performing the "Sixteen Going on Seventeen" combo in my office..however that would not be appropriate.  You know, the thunderstorm gazebo number with Ralf!?   Tell me you didn't practice that in your family room?  Oh, just me? Alright. 

Something Inspirational:  Nothing like some happy words about the human experience to bring you back to what really matters.
You’ll need coffee shops and sunsets and road trips. Airplanes and passports and new songs and old songs, but people more than anything else. You will need other people and you will need to be that other person to someone else, a living breathing screaming invitation to believe better things.

Something New: I saw my girl Emeli Sande a month ago at the Pride festival in DC and she just dropped a new song.  It's GOOD. 

Something Real:  TED Talks rock...but really.  I love watching them and feeling inspired or just learning and thinking.  Today I watched one of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love) talk about the creative process.  If you enjoy anything creative, you'll love it.  If not, just listen, her language is incredible and inspiring.  

& finally, flowers.  By the end of the week, I plan on buying myself flowers..because, why not?

There's my cure all for this weird week.  
Do you have a ritual or a go-to when things are off?
PS. It's almost Friday!

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013


My roomie Alison & I went to Target this weekend in search of fruits & veggies to juice but I came home with a new toy.  I had noticed my old ipod earbuds [you know, the free ones you get with any Apple applicance] were sounding a little trippy at work.  I saw the perfect opportunity for a new pair and I took it. I came home with yurbuds.  


First of all, all my ladies out there, do you ever find that your ear buds hurt or constantly fall out while you work out?!  Never fear, yurbuds are here [giggling as I write this].  yurbuds has designed ear buds specifically for women's ears, making them smaller and comfortable because not all ears are create equal.  They are also sweat and water resistant & totally comfy.  [but most importantly, super cute.]
I came home with the apple green pair, which of course isn't shown on Target's website, but trust me, they are cute.  I'm excited to try them out today on my run after work.
Do you swear by a specific brand of ear buds?!
Happy Running! 

Monday, July 8, 2013


Happy Monday folks!

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend.  I spent mine in DC attempting to unplug and unwind after an already busy summer.  I only have about 4 more weeks left living on the Hill so its crunch time.  So many fun places to visit, people to see, drinks to have, etc.  

This 4th of July weekend I wanted to be comfy and fun.  I had never paired these two pieces together before and it just felt right.  While it was a bit warm here in the district, it was the perfect outfit for me to wonder about Capitol Hill.

Sunnies: Ray Ban | Top: J.Crew | Shorts: J.Crew | Belt: J.Crew | Flats: Steven Madden

Did you do anything fun this holiday weekend? 

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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Independence Day!

Happy 4th of July, everyone!  
How do you plan on being patriotic today? 
I can't wait to check Bloglovin' and see everyone's super cute [red, white, and blue] outfits!  
I'm not crazy about stars, but I love me some stripes.  
Today reminds me of : flags, stripes, red & blue, strawberries & blueberries, watermelon, water balloons, parades, streamers, lawn chairs, catonsville, dc, baltimore, beaches & coolers, cut off jeans, pools, fireworks, live music, lightning bugs, friends, and sparklers.

What reminds you of the 4th?  

Have a blessed holiday with family, friends, and good health!
  Never forget the people that died so we can be free!  Live out your dreams for those people, but especially for yourself & remember how lucky you are to be born in America!  
God Bless America!
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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The real party is on the 3rd of July

 I am feeling pretty patriotic this 4th of July.  I'll be spending my first 4th in D.C., our nation's capital [which is exciting].  No metro'ing back to College Park, or Baltimore...I can walk to the fireworks and concert on the Mall!  I figure if I'm gonna do the 4th, DC style, it might as well be while I'm living on Mass Ave & in walking distance of everything on Capitol Hill.  

Now, from my experience last year, it seems that everyone on the political side of the game here in the district uses this time to escape DC for a week, or a long weekend.  And I can't blame them, I escaped to Annapolis with my roommate last year to avoid the extremely crowded metro's and masses of people that seem to be flocking to the district to celebrate, Founder's style.  [Because what better way to celebrate freedom and independence than to stand shoulder to shoulder with hundreds of hot/smelly people on an inescapable train car?] 

But I get it, you're in the 'center of the free world,' it's bound to be exciting, right? 

I'm still not entirely sure how I'm going to spend my time, but I do know some sort of brunching experience is going to happen.  Check out this great article on the best brunches this weekend in DC for the holiday.

My roommate from Oklahoma's best friend from OSU is here for the week experiencing DC for the first time, so I am very much looking forward to doing the 'tourist tour' with her over the weekend.   

If I was to have a 4th party of my own, I'd probably use some of these super cute free printables from Life Made Simply.  I found this on Pinterest the other day and I printed some out at work [they are simply too cute not to].  Did I make cupcakes?  Nah, but I might decorate our little row house with these little tags. 

I am starting the celebration early tonight with the annual best friend family party that I've been attending since I was 15.  Good friends, a great family, great food, happy music; it's bound to be another great 3rd of July tonight! 

Do you have a 4th of July tradition? 
 How are you planning on celebrating America, land of the free and home of the brave?

Happy 3rd, everyone!
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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

All About The Juice

When I was in Copenhagen, the least expensive foods were veggies and fruits.  It was glorious and a great incentive to eat healthy.  When there are happy hour specials, food chains on every's challenging and tempting to just 'get by' with whatever is easiest and cheapest.  Being an intern who's used to a dining hall also probably doesn't help...bottom line, I've been eating really poorly and it needs to stop.

New lines of juices have been coming out and 'juice cleanses' are all the rage and I've been really anxious to try a cleanse.  There are so many great recipes to try on Pinterest, so I found a juicer on Amazon for $30 and I went for it.  


My roommates and I have joked endlessly about this.  We've joked about sticking quesadilla's, nachos, quac down the juicer, etc.  They thought the closest I would ever come to a juice cleanse was me and my Cucumber G&T at The Hamilton a few weeks ago...ok, maybe that was the first step?

Have you ever done a juice cleanse?