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Monday, July 31, 2017

Quotes of the Week

Welcome back y'all! It has been a week since I last posted on HT and I am feeling refreshed. Blogging is something I love doing, it's why I continue to create content for Haute Table but sometimes it is really hard. The summer is a little more difficult because I don't have super exciting stuff to post about {unlike last summer's London abroad adventure} and I don't have a consistent photographer to do shots with; it ends up putting more pressure on me to be creative. And I don't think pressure is always the best way to create creativity, so I decided to take last week off - also I had a Spanish midterm and was actually on vacation the rest of the week {you saw this on social}. But I'm back and...hopefully...better than ever! I have been planning a lot of new content, College Week is coming up real fast, and I have a new travel vlog for you this week {hello Colorado}. I hope you are having a wonderful week and let me know what you're up to-xoxo darling, Hayden.

*All images can be found here.*

Monday, July 24, 2017

Taking the Week Off

Last week I mentioned I was going on vacation to Colorado this week and since I am I have decided to take the week off from blogging. This is the first time in a very long time that I haven't blogged for an extended period of time but I think it is for the best. I am so excited to bring y'all new/more content soon! I have a whole week of College posts coming soon and you'll get to see my Colorado trip as well. Plus, I will be shooting a ton of outfit posts too! I hope you have a wonderful week and let me know what you're up to. You can follow along my week/trip on Instagram {@hautetable}-xoxo darling, Hayden.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Road Trippin' Playlist

It's so strange, this week I have really been inspired by things I used to do on Haute Table, check out yesterday's kind of throwback here. Today I made a new playlist...it's only been...just a year and four months since my last one...
But I've decided to do this a little differently. I'm going to be making playlists when I get in the mood on Spotify so that y'all can actually listen to them right on the site! So I have been working to make my Spotify more public and I've been trying to come up with some creative ideas for this new endeavor. Check out the first edition of the new Haute Table playlist below-xoxo darling, Hayden.

This playlist was inspired by my trips home this summer. I live about an hour and a half away from my house so every few weekends I drive on the interstate {honestly, my worst nightmare} home and back. So in order to get me through that, I made a playlist so I could, literally, scream out the lyrics as I hurtled down the highway. I love the way it turned out, but here it is for your listening pleasure:

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Recent Loves

Today's post is a little like my old "Currently" posts. Recently I have just bee loving some products so I thought I would share them with you and find out what y'all are currently into as well. 

#1: Sabrina the Teenage Witch - Okay, a girl I follow on Instagram posted a snap of her watching this show and I thought...that used to be one of my favorites, how is she watching it? Fast forward, I found all of the seasons on AmazonPrime! About a month into my internship I finally pulled the trigger and started the first season. I was so worried that the magic {literally and figuratively} would be lost and I would hate the show. Well, I didn't!!! The writers on that show were amazing because it is still just as hilarious, to me, as it was when I was younger. Plus, it has the best examples of 90s clothing, music and pop culture references...not to mention the amount of AMAZING guest stars? The Backstreet Boys were on it in the last episode I watched. 

#2: Jeni's Ice Cream - A few years ago I heard through social media about the Midwestern Jeni's, and surprisingly we didn't have it anywhere in Florida {where I live in Florida is very Midwestern} so I kind of forgot about it. Then I was in Fresh Market the other day looking for some Talenti {it's my favorite} and there was Jeni's sitting on the top row. It's a tad expensive but I knew that this opportunity wouldn't come again so I grabbed some up. Oh. my. goodness. That stuff is some of the best ice cream I have ever had, not the best, but it's up there. I tried the Salted Peanut Butter with Chocolate Flecks and I am still dreaming about it because when I went back they were all out...so I tried the Ndali Estate Vanilla, which is very good for plain vanilla but that peanut butter one is much better. Seriously, if you can find your way to a pint of Jeni's do so quickly. 

#3: Pei Wei - I'm realizing very quickly this is just becoming my favorite foods right now...but I have a Pei Wei really close to my office and you can order online so it's ready to go when you get there which is such a nice feature. My go to dish is the Kung Pao with vegetables, no meat, something that is very unlike me. But I just love the sauce that they put the on the whole thing, it makes eating the vegetables more enjoyable? I don't know, I don't question it. The meal is a little over $5, and it fills me up until a late dinner, so I would recommend. 

This concludes my recent loves, I hope you enjoyed! And please let me know what y'all are loving down below because I am always looking for something to become obsessed with...trust me. Also, is anyone else re-watching Sabrina? 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Week Re-Cap

Whew, it's been a while since I've done one of these, huh? If I am being honest I have been avoiding them because I haven't taken any photos as of late but I have been collecting every couple of few from the past three weeks. Interning and an online Spanish class have been taking up a lot of my time recently but I am headed home this weekend to get ready for my trip next week! This time next week I will be in Colorado and I am so excited! Working full time this summer has given me a glimpse of my future...and man can I say I am worn out? Anyway, I am glad to be back to recapping my weeks, and it is crazy that I only have two weeks left in Sarasota but I am glad to be headed home for the rest of August before I begin my...oh it's too hard to say...senior year. Hope y'all are enjoying Haute Table recently, I've been working really hard on the posts. Let me know if there is more you want to hear about-xoxo darling, Hayden

First, I celebrated 7-Eleven Day the only way I know 
how...with a Coca-Cola Slurpee.

An adorable breakfast spot in Sarasota.

I've been obsessed with Yoder's Amish Village for so long, 
the food is to-die-for.

Big Top Brewing with the family.

 One of the best museums in Florida, it features a beautiful art-deco 
mansion, the Ringling Circus Museum and a world-renowned art museum.

 My favorite part of the whole museum is the miniature circus. 

 A new art instillation. 

Still in love with neon, and especially this gold mirror.

 Parts of the circus museum.

 The art collection is housed in this gorgeous pink building.

A pair of roses from the impressive rose garden. 

 The new Center for Asian Art is absolutely gorgeous. 

 One of the few windows in the building.

I saw Relatively Speaking on Saturday and if you are anywhere near Sarasota in 
the next month you should see it! So funny, so good!  

Celebrated National Ice Cream Day at a cute little shop in Sarasota.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Colorado Recommendations

I am headed off to Colorado next week, we are staying at the Broadmoor, and I am looking for any recommendations y'all might have. I will be there for four days, and y'all know I love to eat/drink/shop/visit so please let me know-xoxo darling, Hayden

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Articles I'm Reading

Oh my goodness, I just want to preface today's Articles with a thank you for all of your support during Travel Week. Writing those long posts was so hard but so much fun and I hope you look forward to next year's Travel Week. Please send me what you want me to write about for it, I'm already starting to think! Plus, this went so well that I will be doing a College Week in August so stay tuned for that. Also, if you are just now getting a chance to read HT this week, here are the links to every post from Travel Week, instead of a "In Case You Missed It":

Use this to plan for your next vacation to anywhere on Earth...
This guide to Paris is massive and one of my proudest moments...
These are the things I absolutely cannot leave the house without before a trip...
Traveling to London soon? Or just love London? Instagram? See my Instagram Guide to London...
Find out what I think the best souvenirs from trips are...

Stay tuned next week for an interview with a fellow blogger & me asking y'all for travel recommendations-xoxo darling, Hayden

Now onto your regularly scheduled Articles I'm Reading:

  1. This is helping out with my last few weeks in Sarasota // Where to eat, drink in Sarasota // Sports Illustrated 
  2. She is such an icon // 13 Questions With Ina Garten // Food & Wine
  3. Love this // Check Out the World's Trippiest Hotel Atriums // Fast Company 
  4. I want to try all of them // Nine Refreshing Fruit Flavored Beers You Need to Try this Summer // Sports Illustrated
  5. This blog is absolutely beautiful as always // Provence House // Gal Meets Glam
  6. THEY ARE TOO CUTE // Watch Grandmas Try Fireball Whisky For the First Time // Obsev

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Best Souvenirs

Most people shop for souvenirs when they travel, and that is great! It is amazing to bring a little piece back from your trip so you can always remember the great times you had. But I don't like stuff that collects dust, so no figurines here. I am all about the more authentic souvenirs; so if there is something that makes sense to you to get on your trip, get it. But if you are struggling to figure out what to get for yourself or others, these are my go-tos-xoxo darling, Hayden.

Postcards - But not the super cheesy ones, I went to a local shop in London and found these adorable cards for all of my friends. I love the detail work and they aren't just of Big Ben. Go purchase a ton at once, get stamps and send them all so they have the official postage of wherever you are. I honestly think this might be the best gift because it means you were thinking about the person while traveling. You didn't stop at the airport on your way home, you sent them a postcard mid-trip. 
Magnets - This is what I get every single place I go, seriously. My fridge, my parents fridge, every fridge we own is covered in magnets. I just love them so much, they are the perfect souvenir because a) they don't collect dust b) they are easy to pack c) they speak volumes about where you went without being in your face about it. 
Maps - These are, usually, free and if you mount them on core board, they are such a cute little souvenir. I, personally, am obsessed with public transportation {the Tube is probably my favorite thing about London} so I love 'em. Make sure to save your maps, you never know where you'll want to use them! 
Scarves - Buying clothes in country is great, you'll have it for a long amount of time, you'll wear it, it won't just sit on a shelf, that makes it A+. But clothes go in and out of style and you can fluctuate in weight, plus, clothes get tired after a certain amount of wearing. That is why my go-to is a scarf. They don't get used up and they can be the perfect accessory to any outfit. 
Wrapping Paper - If you are in a local bookstore, anywhere in the world, they might have wrapping paper that reflects where you are, buy it! You can make it into posters or wrap your friend's presents in it.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Instagram Guide to London

As you scroll through Instagram, there are millions of photos of Big Ben and Tower Bridge. But why post photos of those when you can find something more off-the beaten path?

Instagram has quickly taken over the social media scene with over 300 million users. There are over 75 million photos posted a day on the app and yours can easily get lost in the shuffle. To make your followers even more insta-jealous of your study abroad travels, try these locations. The places are not only photo worthy but also hold historic and cultural meaning that even Londoners can attest to. So grab your iPhone and Oyster Card and get out there.

Victoria & Albert Cafe – Silverware clatters against plates, the murmur of hundreds of conversations float around you, and the overhead chandeliers cast a soft glow. The Victorian-era walls of the

Morris, Gamble and Poynter rooms, originally decorated around 1857, create the world’s oldest museum restaurant. The columns in the middle of the rooms are ornate and the ceiling features hand-painted tiles with glorious woodwork. The food is an added bonus, with hot and cold options as well as various pastry and tea delights. You purchase your food before finding a table and for your best photo options, sit at a booth on the side of the main room. 
Victoria and Albert Café is located in the back of the museum. (www.vam.ac.uk/visit#cafe, 0300 061 2380). Entry is free. Open daily from 10am- 5:15pm, Fridays from 10am-9:30pm.

Greenwich Park – The quiet of Greenwich Park in the morning is engulfing, amazing you that you’re only a 45-minute train ride from London’s center. It is relatively empty, aside from the odd dog walker or couple practicing their waltz at the bandstand. The park is 180 acres and by walking through its entirety you get a sense of tranquility, putting you at piece with the world around you. It is the most historic of the Royal Parks as it dates back to 1427, when Henry V’s brother inherited it. The park was the birthplace of Henry VIII and in 1661 the Royal Observatory was commissioned on the site. The Royal Observatory lies at the top of Greenwich Hill, with hoards of school children and tourists pushing past to get their photo with the Prime Meridian. But avoid them and head for the lookout point to take your idyllic photo of the greenery ending in the National Maritime Museum, its classical architecture a bright, white offset to its surroundings.
Greenwich Park (www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/greenwich-park, 0300 061 2380 ). Entry is free. Open every day from 6am-9:30pm. Best Instagram Filter: Gingham

Leadenhall Market – Past the flood of men in suits at Bank is Leadenhall Market. Being there is like being transported back to the set of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Glass ceilings provide vibrant sunlight while burgundy painted wooden columns hold gargoyles. The market began in 1411, was rebuilt after the Great Fire in 1666, and in 1881 it received its current architectural fame. Today the market host’s stores and restaurants that fill-up quickly during the lunch hour. As you stand in the middle of the market looking up at the ceiling multiple tour groups walk in to quickly snap photos. But your best photo comes from standing at the end of the market and shooting back into the center. Leadenhall Market (https://www.leadenhallmarket.co.uk/). Entry is free. Open all day every day. Best Instagram Filter: Amaro.

Daunt Books – Just off Marleybone High Street Daunt is daunting indeed; but in a good way. Books are stacked almost to the ceiling and the travel section is something you could only dream about. The Edwardian bookshop opened over 25 years ago with its long oak galleries, intimate surroundings, and the smell of books. Green lights hang from a sunroof and green walls are studded with etched glass windows. Plan at least an hour for the perfect perusal time and be warned you will probably end up purchasing one of their Daunt book bags. The Instagram lies in the reading room, standing at the top of the stairs, shooting into the room. 
Daunt Books (www.dauntbooks.co.uk, 02072242295). Entry is free. Open Monday-Saturday from 9am-7:30pm, and Sundays/Bank Holidays from 11am-6pm. Best Instagram Filter: Valencia

Queen Mary’s Gardens – After you leave Daunt Books, head outside to Regent’s Park, which features Queen Mary’s Gardens. Perfect during the first two weeks of June and after a recent rain, the roses glisten with water droplets and the vivid colors will fill your camera roll with hundreds of options. The petals that have fallen off cover the floor of the gardens and the smell of fresh roses emanates from every corner. The area was opened in 1932 and holds London’s largest collection of roses with about 12,000 varieties planted. The hardest thing will be controlling yourself from taking photos of each kind. 
Queen Mary’s Gardens (https://www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/the-regents-park/things-to-see-and-do/gardens-and-landscapes/queen-marys-gardens, 0300 061 2300). Entry is free. Open everyday from 5am-9:30pm. Best Instagram Filter: Reyes.

Bywater Street – There is always someone posing with the colorful homes on Bywater Street, be that a fashion blogger or an old couple with a Nikon zoom lens.The street is on a cul-de-sac and is eerily quiet despite its closeness to Sloane Square’s shopping district. Bywater, located in Chelsea, is often confused with Notting Hill on social media platforms. It features a row of adorable, brightly colorful houses that make one of the most aesthetically pleasing Instagram photos you will ever take. As an added bonus, if you are a mystery novel buff, you will recognize No. 9 Bywater as George Smiley’s (John le Carre’s MI6 intelligence officer) house. 
Bywater Street is located at Chelsea, London SW3 4XD. Entry is free. Open all day every day. Best Instagram Filter: Clarendon.

Green Park – Birds chirp, the wind whistles through the trees, and you can faintly pick up the sound of children laughing in the distance. Green Park located next to Buckingham Palace is the perfect place to escape from the hustle and bustle of tourist-centric London. Sit on a bench, pack a picnic and let the calm serenity soothe your mind. The park was first listed in historical records in 1554, as a meadowland used for hunting. But today’s park landscape looks much more like when the park was opened for the public in 1826. There are no buildings, just wide-open green spaces. Your instagramable place lies behind the Canada Gate, a line of hulking trees that create the perfect green canopy, make sure to go in the late afternoon when the lighting is best. 
Green Park (www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/green-park, 0300 061 2350). Entry is free. Open all day every day. Best Instagram Filter: Slumber.

I realize there are tons of other places to Instagram in London, but this was just a little round-up. If you want even more of my favorites, please email me, I lived in London for 2 1/2 months! Also, be on the lookout for the most massive travel guide HT has ever seen in the next few months, I am going to be taking my extensive knowledge of London and creating an ultimate guide-xoxo darling, Hayden.

P.S. Stay tuned tomorrow for advice on the best souvenirs to buy on your next vacation! 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

My Top 10 Travel Essentials

About a month ago, a friend posted in one of my Facebook groups about what our top 10 travel essentials were, and it actually took me a while. I travel quite a bit but I didn't know what I used/packed all of the time off the top of my head. Since then I have created my 10. These aren't what you should pack, these are what I think you should pack as an essential item to surviving your travel. These go on top of whatever clothes, chargers, etc. you decide to bring. Hopefully these help you and please let me know your travel essentials down below-xoxo darling, Hayden.

Headphones - I have forgotten my headphones before on airplanes and regretted it instantly. I always have a pair in my carry-on or bag if I am road-tripping. It is nice to be able to shut out the hectic-ness around you and listen to a great podcast or playlist. 
Tampons - Ladies, you never know when your period is going to hit in the most inopportune moment. And why not just have tampons {or pads on you} instead of having to run to CVS or Walgreens. This way you are always prepared for every situation. 
Rain Jacket - I am always over-prepared when it comes to weather so a rain jacket is always packed away with my clothes. Even if the weather for the week says it will be sunshine, I pack a rain jacket. I don't want to get caught without one and they are expensive to buy. Plus, one can double as a jacket if you get cold. 
Water Bottle - This is something that I started in high school, but I try to bring a water bottle with me when I fly so as soon as I'm through security I can find a water fountain and fill up the bottle. I get really dehydrated when I fly so I try to keep up my water intake. 
Extra Contacts - I don't know about y'all but bad things tend to happen to my contacts when I travel. I'll drop one on the floor and not be able to find it, I'll tear one, no matter what something happens. So I always travel with two extra sets of my lenses {as well as my glasses}. 
Pens - This is something I learned from my grandma, you should always have a pen in your bag. You never know when you're going to sign something so I try to carry 1-2 pens with me when I travel. They are so nice to have, and then you can scratch down ideas on cocktail napkins too. 
Make-Up Remover Wipes - This is essential to me if I am traveling on a red-eye. I hate the gross feeling you get on airplanes after a while so I bring make-up remover wipes to rejuvenate my face after too long with recycled air. 
Sunscreen - Being the pale, Irish skinned girl that I am I don't really go anywhere without sunscreen. It always goes in with my toiletries because you never know if it is going to be sunny or what is going to happen, so always protect your skin. 
Ziplocs - When I fly it's about a 40% chance one of my liquids will explode onto everything, so I always carry a second {or third, fourth, fifth} baggie to transfer my stuff to. Also, they make great snack bags too...obviously, so if you want to buy a bigger bag of the snack you can transport it! 
Excedrin - Everyone gets a headache at some point, whether you had a few too many the night before in the hotel bar or you just have some aches, pain medicine is essential. I always travel with a small baggie of Excedrin because it is my go-to. 
P.S. Stay tuned for tomorrow's post: The Best Instagram Spots in London!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Paris Travel Guide

As a second grader, I visited Paris for the first time. We took the Eurostar over for less than 24 hours and really hit the highlights. I’m talking eating in the Eiffel Tower, a boat tour of the Seine and a quick double decker bus tour of the major sites. The most prevalent memory from that trip was the best chocolate croissant I had ever eaten -- we bought it on the boat dock of our Seine river cruise. It proved that Paris really does have the best pastries.

I then visited again, this time for roughly a week when I was a sophomore in high school. Instead of having the traditional “sweet sixteen” party most of my friends had, I opted to visit Belgium and France with my grandmama, who is French. That trip showed me how beautiful the city was and because of it, Paris holds a special place in my heart.

The last time I was in the city was with Hannah last July. We took the Eurostar over for a couple of days to do Paris as best friends, something that I would suggest to anyone. I think traveling with friends is an ultimate test of your friendship, but if it works, gosh does it work.

I have been contemplating writing this guide for a while, and I finally decided it was time; I did my Paris Top 10 a while back. Having been quite a few times I think I have a pretty good feel for the city and I hope if you visit the City of Lights you’ll use my recommendations. If you have been to any of these places, let me know, I love to compare travel stories & if you think there is something I missed let me know, I want to add it to my next itinerary-xoxo darling, Hayden.

How to Get There:

There are a few options when traveling to the city. First, you can fly into Charles de Gaulle airport. I have never used this option and from what I hear it is one of the worst airports on the face of the planet. But I have never been, so I can’t say. In regards to airlines, I am a real big fan of Delta and Virgin although I have heard wonderful things about AirFrance. As I stated earlier, I have taken the Eurostar twice from London. The first time I took it out of Waterloo and the second out of St. Pancras. I cannot remember what the experience out of Waterloo was like, but I did take a different train out of there recently and it was really nice. They have a mini Marks and Spencer so plenty to eat! St. Pancras is one of my all time favorite train stations. It’s beautiful yet modern so if you have the opportunity to leave from there, take it! The process is fairly easy, you show up about 45 minutes before, go through security {metal detectors, etc} and then wait for them to call the train. You then quickly walk upstairs and find your seats. It takes about two and a half hours, and costs about $224. Sometimes the Standard Premium is cheaper than the Standard, which blows my mind, and it includes a meal! This happened to Hannah and I on our way back. The trains are nice and clean, there is plenty of room for your bags and it’s an easy journey in general. You get into Gar du Nord, it was under construction last I was there so hopefully it is back to normal now! Lastly, another way to get to Paris, is to fly to Brussels, Belgium. It can be cheaper than flying into Charles de Gaulle. You then take a high-speed train to Paris, I did this for my sixteenth birthday and it worked like a charm.

Where to Stay:

I have stayed at two hotels in Paris, the Hotel Concortel and the Hôtel Paris Louis Blanc - Paris 10. Both had really phenomenal locations and I liked them equally. The Concortel is right by Madeleine, so tons of restaurants {it’s by Fauchon, Laudree, etc} and there are lots of Metro spots. The hotel itself was a little dated, but the bathroom had just been redone, it was so nice. The Louis Blanc was very modern and right by Gar du Nord so if you are coming in on a late Eurostar train, this is perfect. Also, it is on a corner right across from a Metro stop that will take you into the heart of Paris. The only complaint I had was the bathroom was t i n y. There are hundreds of hotels in Paris, so choose whatever you want but I would recommend both of these options.

What To Do:

Arc de Triomphe
- This is my favorite view of Paris, some people might love the Eiffel Tower or Notre Dame but the Arc is perfect. My suggestion is to go just before sunset because the view you will get of the Eiffel Tower, La Defense, Montmartre and the rest of the city is absolutely breathtaking. Be wary of the steps, they are super duper steep; but the view is so worth it.
Celine Blue Doors - This is one of those “must Instagram” travel moments.The Celine blue doors have been on every fashion blogger that has been to Paris’ Insta, and for good reason. The doors are beautiful and the blue really makes
your outfit pop. I’ve always been a big fan of Celine so the last time I visited Paris, I went to the doors and met quite a few Celine employees leaving for the day. They were all so kind and it was so cool to meet people who work in their headquarters.

Centre Pompidou - I am a really big fan of modern art, and if you are this is a must visit. If not, just go to see the outside because it is a real experience. They basically “flipped” the museum so all of the stuff that would normally be inside the walls is on the outside. Tubes, pipes, scaffolding is all available for the naked eye to see. 

Château de Versailles - If you have the extra time, you must take the train out to Versailles and spend the entire day out at that magical palace. I did it on one of my last days in Paris, I took breakfast with me on the train, had lunch at one of their little cafes and didn’t come back until about 4pm. It is massive and you won’t be able to see everything, but definitely walk through the main house, you want to see the Hall of Mirrors, right? Then get outside, my absolute favorite part were the grounds. And then there is the Petit Trianon, it’s beautiful and you’ll want to move in immediately.

Chanel - I realize this might not be for everyone...but realize Haute Table started out as a fashion and food blog so I have to pay homage to my favorite traditional designer (despite her German ties). When I visited back in high school my grandmama took me to the original Channel located on Place Vendome. Coco’s apartment is above the store and across the street is the Ritz where she used to sell her wares before she got her store. I did not go in, because I wasn’t going to purchase anything, but I made sure to photograph the moment about 50 times.

Eiffel Tower - This is a classic, must-see, right? If I am being honest I am not a huge fan of going up in the tower because it takes a lot of valuable time. But if it is your first trip to Paris, you HAVE TO GO. There is no exception. My suggestion is to get up super early, have breakfast at Cafe de Flore
{below} and get in line. Make sure you buy a ticket all the way to the top because you must experience that weird swinging feeling you have once you’re up there. Fun Fact: there are restrooms at the top of the Eiffel Tower. Also, spring for those elevator tickets because those stairs are terrifying. If you really want to go all in, eat at one of the restaurants in the tower, I did the Jules Verne when I was little and that view...spectacular. Before you go, read this book about the Eiffel Tower’s creation. I couldn’t put it down.

Galeries Lafayette - My grandmama took me to this, gorgeous, department store when I was going through a serious fashion phase...I never really came out of it. I cannot describe the beauty of this building? It is covered in gold, there are so many floors, so many stores and beautiful people everywhere. Might I suggest, if you are going to Paris, set aside a large amount of money to make your one special purchase. Some people go for an Hermes scarf {always a good option}, I bought a Longchamp bag at Galeries Lafayette and it will always be one of my all-time-favorite purchases.

Grand Palais & Petit Palais - These two are across the street from each other and they are the same architecture. I would suggest popping by each of them to see the insides and if they have an exhibit on you might like. You’ll recognize a lot of interior if you watch Paris Fashion Week or the Hermes horse shows, they use these
Hotel de Ville - This isn’t one that I suggest going in, mainly because I have never done that. But it is beautiful for photo taking. This is basically Paris’ city hall and my goodness is the facade of the building breathtaking. When you’re walking down Rivoli or before you cross over to the big island, stop by this one for a photo.

Ile Saint-Louis (the little island) - The Little Island is second only to the Sainte Chapelle {later} on my list of Paris favorites. It is connected to the bigger island in the Seine by a few bridges and you have to go walk down the main street for stops at Berthillon {later}, shops and a bite to eat. If you are in Paris in mid-March you might even see Carnival happening where people in beautiful dresses and elaborate masks walk down the main street. Place Louis Aragon is at the Eastern end of the island, is, maybe?, the smallest park in Paris. It is my favorite place to view the Seine and watch the many boats go by.

Jardin des Tuileries - If you are at the Louvre, you will do the Tuileries because they are right in front. And if you are there during the summer you can take part in their fair, that is where you see those photos of the pink swing set and all of the ferris wheels. When Hannah and I visited going to the fair was the top of my list and we had a blast. Aside from that, and if you aren’t visiting in the summer, a stroll through the Tuileries will put you in the heart of Paris. Grab a green chair and people watch under a tree.

Jardin du Luxembourg - One of my favorite memories of Paris is walking through this garden on the Left Bank in the early morning. There was a group doing Tai Chi, young moms were walking their prams, joggers were circling and I was just so in the moment. Paris is beautiful and sometimes I think the Left Bank can be a little forgotten, but this park is a must-see because there are so many little hidden trails that make for the best afternoon.

Les Arts Decoratifs - When I saw a blogger visiting a museum that seemed to be about fashion in Paris I knew I had to go...so I dragged the best friend there and we both ended up loving it. When we were there they had an amazing exhibit on Barbie, which I grew up with so it was real relevant to me. They also had beautiful garments displayed in the most interesting ways...it is a must go if you like fashion. I was in awe pretty much the whole time, you can ask Hannah. Also, if you are going in the next six months, there will be a Christian Dior exhibit...I will be infinitely jealous if you go.

Les Deux Plateaux - If you follow a fashion blogger who has been to Paris you have seen these iconic black and white striped columns. They are iconic for fashion photography and children alike. They are not super hard to find but they are in a courtyard, behind a building so make sure you have a good map with you and take your camera for all of the shots. I took Haute Table's Fourth Birthday shots there, which you can find here.

Les Invalides - I am a huge history nerd so Invalides is one of my top suggestions because there is so much there. It’s the armory museum of France so it spans so many different years. You can see knight’s armor, items from WWII and more. On the back side of Invalides is where Napoleon’s tomb, something that slightly freaks me out but at the same time it is a sight to see. You stand above it looking down through a giant circular hole...only Napoleon could make his tomb that dramatic.

Louvre Museum
- Aside from the Eiffel Tower I would say this is the second most famous thing in Paris? And one of my least favorites...I know this is sacrilegious to say but I am not a traditional art lover, I am way more into contemporary and modern art but you still have to go, so I have. Let me tell you now, the Mona Lisa is tiny in comparison with what you think in your mind. If you are going to the Louvre, mentally prepare yourself for the crowds and print out a map ahead of time of what you want to see so you don’t get overwhelmed or swept up.

Montmartre - Looking for amazing views of Paris? This one is for you, Montmarte is only a few Metro stops away from the center of the city and a must-see in my opinion. You can walk up all of the hills to the La Basilique du Sacre Coeur, or you can take the funicular, this is the best option. Once you’re up there pop a squat on the steps and look out at the beautiful scenery around you {and the people watching is phenomenal}. If you want to see sites like the iconic windmill at Moulin Rouge, hop on the Les Petits Trains de Montmartre. It gives you a great overall tour of the area. Lastly, and this is a weird one, if you want a crazy late night with some interesting alcohol, head over to Lapin Agile, a traditional French cabaret where they sing old school French music. It is insane, but such a blast.

Musee de Cluny - This museum was a little off the beaten path for me, but my grandmama insisted we visit. It’s on the Left Bank and it houses the Lady & the Unicorn tapestries that were created in 1500. You enter this super dark room and as your eyes adjust you see these magnificent works of art. It is not your typical Paris thing, so add this to your list for a little bit of extra culture.

Musee de l’Orangerie - This is one of my favorite museums in Paris because of its simplicity. It isn’t over the top, there aren’t too many pieces to get through and it has a real understated beauty. It’s
located just down from the Louvre, kind of hidden amongst the trees but it has an amazing collection of Monet, including the water lily paintings. They are truly spectacular. Outside the museum is my grandmama’s (and in turn my) favorite sculpture - The Kiss by Rodin.

Musee d’Orsay - This is my favorite art museum in Paris, it is way better than the Louvre {I know, I know, I must be crazy} but believe me, it is. First, it is in an old train station so the architecture is so flipping cool! Also, it is much more manageable than the Lovure, and if you love Monet, you have to go, the entire top floor is impressionism, absolutely beautiful.

Palais Garnier - If you can go to an Opera in Paris, why wouldn’t you? When I was there, they were between shows but I did take a tour of Garnier, and it was not regretted. The building is g o r g e o u s. You get to see the famous Phantom of the Opera chandelier and they really do show you almost all of the building. If you don’t have time to go inside, definitely go see it, the building sits in the middle of a major Parisian street and is beautifully imposing.

Parc du Champ-de-Mars - This is the park in front of the Eiffel Tower so if you are looking for photos with greenery in them and the tower in the background, definitely visit. Hannah and I had picked up sandwiches to have a picnic and we chose this spot, overlooking the Seine and the tower for a wonderful meal.
Place de la Concorde - If you have done the Louvre, Tuileries and such you will inevitably do the Place de la Concorde with its fountains and column {topped with gold} this is such an iconic Paris spot for photos and just to take in the beauty of the city. When Hannah and I were there in the summer, a giant ferris wheel sat in the middle so you could see all of Paris. I’ve read that they also have it up for Christmas, so maybe it is becoming an all year thing? Let me know if you go!

Place des Vosges - This is my grandmama’s favorite spot in Paris. It is a square of beautiful brick buildings with a courtyard in the middle and tons of restaurants and shops. Victor Hugo’s apartment in the Place has been turned into a museum. Hannah and I stopped back by last year to sample our macarons from Laudree under the shade of a tree as we watched little kids play in the fountains. I would recommend stopping for a coffee at one of the many cafes and looking out over the square.

Place du Trocadero - This is another one of those fashion blogger spots. If you have seen anyone post from a plaza with the perfect view of the Eiffel Tower, this is it! It’s right across the Seine, and the photos are perfect from this spot. The cover photo at the very beginning of this post, of Hannah and I, is from Trocadero. It is great during the day and also the best spot for photos of the tower when it is twinkling at night.

Place Vendome - Love shopping and history? This is for you. First, the Ritz is on the Place Vendome so stop in for a phenomenal hotel lobby. The original Chanel store is across the way and there is the
famous column. Napoleon had the column created out of melted down canons he captured at the most decisive battle of the Napoleonic Wars. The whole square, it isn’t shaped like a square, but you get what I am saying, is perfect for photos and just to see the beauty of Paris up close.

Pont Alexandre III Bridge - If you are looking for the best way to walk across Paris’ most famous bridge, start at Invalides, tour the museum, walk across the bridge to the Grand Palais. Or you can just find your way there on another route. But you have to go and take your photos, view the beauty of this bridge for yourself.

Rodin Museum - When I was younger I was obsessed with the Thinker because it is such a masterpiece. My parents told me that it was traveling to Stanford when we visited but it wasn’t there so I vowed that when I went to Paris I would see it. Fast forward many years and I was standing in front of the Rodin Museum, we
paid our admission, grabbed our maps and headed off. The Thinker was being worked on. That’s right it was not in its glory, but covered in plastic. However, it all worked out because I was able to experience the rest of Rodin’s work, which is magnificent. I would highly recommend going to this museum because not only is the work beautiful, but the grounds are as well.

Rue Cler Market - Paris is full of food markets, and there are definitely ones better than this but if you are looking for fresh flowers or sandwiches to take to the Eiffel Tower, this is your best bet. It is located in the Saint Germain Pres area of Paris and the wide street is full of flower shops, sandwich kiosks and more most mornings.

Sainte-Chapelle - My all-time favorite thing in Paris is the Sainte-Chapelle. If you know me, you know I am not religious...but then why is this my favorite? Because it houses the most beautiful stained glass I have ever seen. The chapel is tiny but it is better than any famous church, and if I am giving you some real advice, skip the line at Notre Dame and go to this attraction. You can’t really see it from the road, it is tucked into some government buildings but it is on the same island. You’ll walk in on the first floor where there is a tiny sneak peek of the stained glass, then you wind your way up some stairs and come out into the main chapel. It is a breathtaking room with seats on the far sides where you can sit for hours marveling at the beauty. I would allow at least two hours for this spot, if you’re anything like me.
Seine - Anywhere on the Seine is ideal, have a picnic, walk along it, just spend some time taking in that beautiful river.

Shakespeare & Co. - Okay, if I am being honest I think this spot is overrated. But I wanted to include it on here because I know a ton of people want to go. I am a lover of independent bookstores so I get wanting to see this one but honestly it is really touristy, it’s cramped, they don’t want you to take photos or have a real experience either. Hannah really wanted to go the last time (I had already been) so I took her and she was unimpressed. I would say stop by, you’ll be near it if you do Notre Dame or Saint Chapelle.

Where To Eat:

Angelina’s - Angelina’s has a few locations in Paris but I went to the original on Rivoli across from the gardens and the Louvre. This is the infamous hangout of Coco Chanel, who I idolized in high school. Their hot chocolate is their most famous dish, they even sell it in milk bottles for you to take back to relatives. It is so thick and rich you could probably stand a spoon in it. I went in winter

and got to the point where I couldn’t drink it, I do not understand how people do it in the summer. I had a coffee tartlet with chocolate and cream that made me feel a little closer to heaven. I also went to their location at Versailles in the Peit Trianon where I had a delicious vanilla eclair, the top was a solid rectangle of vanilla that you could break into pieces...I still think about it.

Artisan Boulanger Patissier - As mentioned above, Hannah and I visited the Rue Cler Market before heading to the Eiffel Tower. It was my plan for us to pick up some sandwiches to have a picnic along the Seine that day, because how cute would those photos be? We looked at various bakery cases along the market, and this one just stood out to us. You can go in and sit but we got it from their case outside. The sandwiches were basically an entire baguette, my heart soared, with cheese + ham + butter. Honestly, the sandwich of my dreams. We

ended up eating them on the lawn of the Trocadero, and good lord were they good. A full length baguette is pretty huge so what we couldn’t finish we put away for later - which we ended up eating as a snack outside of the Louvre. I would really suggest this method of traveling through Paris. Have a breakfast, get a sandwich, go the whole day snacking on the sandwich/picnicking and then go out somewhere nice for dinner. It’s my favorite way to dine in the city. 

Berthillon - If there is one place you must go in Paris, it’s Berthillon. They have the best ice cream I have ever had in my entire life...and I love ice cream. I promise you this is no hyperbole, I truly think they make the best ice cream. They have a salon; I went with my grandmama, and they sell it on the street corners; where I went with Hannah. I would suggest going to the salon the first time for the experience, then you can get it from any street corner vendor. You must get the

Blood Orange, as a Floridian I am very judging of orange flavors in other places, but y’all. This.is.the.best. The first time I got it, I had it with the chocolate, it was far too rich for me. I like my chocolate a little milkier than that {I realize that is weird}. I also had it the traditional way where they pile a ton of whipped cream on top which is something I am not into by any means. The second time {yes we went twice in a week} I had the Blood Orange with Vanilla and no topping, that was the way to go. It was perfect. My grandmama had it with a pear pastry, and that pastry was to die for. When Hannah & I went we both got ice cream cones, the actual Berthillon was closed for renovations, so we went to a street vendor. It was still as amazing as ever. 

Cafe de Flore - This cafe is incredibly famous if you have ever heard of expats during the 1920s. F. Scott Fitzgerald, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, etc. It’s located in the “intellectual” part of Paris, aka the Left Bank. I’ve been once for breakfast and once for lunch. Both times it epitomized the Parisian cafe. I would suggest breakfast over lunch/dinner because the cafes can get expensive. Petit Dejeuner is any number of things, I usually go for the croissant and coffee. Hannah swore by the hot chocolate. Make sure you get a table facing the street, two people can sit on the side of the restaurant

so you can people watch. It is the best thing in the world to just sit there for hours watching people, sipping coffee. Once when I was there a group of Italian school children were passing and they recognized an heir to the Fiat company {and an all around playboy} so they stopped for photos.

Cafe de la Paix - This restaurant has been a staple in Paris since around 1862. It is in the second empire style and gosh is it beautiful. It sits directly across from the Palais Garnier so you have gorgeous views of the famous opera house. Get their sandwich, on a french baguette with cooked ham, emmental cheese and pickled butter. I know that doesn’t sound appetizing but it really is.

Cafe Madeleine - My grandmama and I discovered this cafe about a third of our time in Paris and goodness gracious were we thankful for it. We went almost everyday for breakfast and then quite a few times for lunch. It is by far the place with the best Croque Monsieurs that I ate in Paris...and I ate a lot of them. There is something about a basic grilled cheese turned even more amazing that makes me a happy camper. If you are by Fauchon/Laduree then you can visit.

Fauchon - Fauchon is like the super fancy store you can’t afford in your town? You know the one I’m talking about, it serves fancy cheese, chocolates, etc. It reminds me of a modern Monsieur Marcel {in Los Angeles}. They love hot pink {like my pineapple} and they have sparkly gold food trays. My

grandmama actually shops there for some things but mainly she goes for breakfast. I took Hannah the last time we were there as well because I really enjoy the experience. Their breakfast is a little like Au Bon Pain but fancier. You grab your own pastries and then pay at the counter. Their Cafe Au Lait is one of the best in Paris {take it from someone who only drank that for a week while she was there}. I always get a chocolate croissant and a mini baguette but everything looks delectable. If you’re visiting in the winter they will have places to eat inside. If you are visiting in the summer, opt to sit on their pink patio for amazing people watching.

Laduree - Ahh, the extremely famous Laduree. Everyone seems to know about it now but when I went back in highschool I had no idea, my grandmama insisted we go because they were the best macarons in France. They have multiple

locations, I believe there is one in New York and Miami now, but I’ve been to the one on the Champs Elysees and the one by Madeleine. Both have tea rooms but I always got my macarons to go. The first time I just got three because I had never had a macaron before, so there was no knowledge of what it should taste like. But wow...wow...wow. The second time I got one of the cute boxes that I still have today. If you go get at least one of the rose flavor because it may sound gross now but it is delicious.

Le Depart Saint Michel - I cannot remember the regular food at this restaurant, located on the left bank side of Notre Dame, but the strawberry tart was one of the best desserts I ate in Paris. The cafe itself isn’t that memorable, just another kind of touristy cafe across from the famous

cathedral, but if you go during strawberry season, stop for the tart. 

Le Train Bleu - This restaurant is perfect for your last night in Paris or if you are celebrating something. It’s located in the heart of Gare de Lyon, which is on the other side of the historic Bastille. The train station was built at the turn of the century to resemble a palace and the restaurant was opened in 1901. It was renamed Le Train Blue in 1963, the name honors the “Blue Train” which went from Paris to the Cote de Azur. Coco Chanel and Bridget Bardot were regulars and quite a few movies have been

filmed in this beautiful restaurant. I remember having the steak with veggies and a delicious version of a chocolate eclair that had ice cream instead of cream.

Hopefully this guide will help you plan for your next trip to Paris. If you think I missed something please let me know, I would love to go the next time I am there! Also, let me know your Paris favorites!

P.S. Stay tuned tomorrow for my Top 10 Travel Essentials! 

Monday, July 10, 2017

How I Plan for Travel

Planning for a trip is a lot of work, obviously, I'm sure most of y'all know. And each one of you has their own way of planning that works for them. But since it is the beginning of travel week I thought I would give y'all insight into how I plan for my trips. I need to say that I don't do this for every trip. If it is a weekend getaway in a place I have been/have a good handle on I don't do all of these steps. But if it is a longer trip or there is a lot to do in a little amount of time I for sure use these techniques. 

Figuring Out What to Do

The first step is figuring out where you are going, once I know this I go on Google Maps and get a lay of the land. For example, London is kind of a giant oval that radiates out from the middle, you can also zoom, see what the bigger attractions are and then have a working knowledge of how you'll need to plan for the stuff you want to see. 
Second, I start my research, something that is really important to me and very extensive. Wherever I go I want the tourist experience and some unique/local things as well. It's no fun to just see the Eiffel Tower but not hang out in a cafe for hours people watching. Traveling, to me, is about a well rounded experience of both of those things. My first Google search is just "What to do in ----." From there I see what the highlights are, begin a Word doc and copy any links to websites I find, this makes it easier access later in the process. Then I go to Fodors Travel Guide, if I am traveling internationally or Trip Advisor if I am traveling in the states. Both of those do a good job of really hitting the highlights of destinations. I add anything else to my Word doc that I liked, then comes the more difficult process. I try to find bloggers {fashion, travel, food, etc} who live in that city that have written guides to their city. Or, if any of the bloggers I read on the regular have visited, I go read their guides. Also, The Everygirl has really good city/weekend guides for the more major cities. If you are traveling to Houston, Fort Myers or Marfa I suggest you check out my Travel Guides page! Once I've done that and added it all to my working Word doc, I Google "the best instagrams in ---." I am obsessed with taking photos, so this is always a go to, but very understandable if you aren't into that. I add those to my list and then alphabetize my list. My Word doc ends up being an alphabetized list of all the places I want to see with links to their websites. 
Now that I know where I want to go, I create a custom Google Map. To do that, you go onto Google Maps, click the menu button in the left hand corner, go down to "Your Places," on the right of that will be "Maps," click that, go to the bottom, click "Create Map." Now you have a custom map to add your locations to. I've created an example below of my trip to Colorado, and if you click this link it will take you to the interactive version. I mark where my hotel is in a different color from what I want to do/where I want to eat. I also create different layers for those two things, respectively. I find creating the map is the best way to be the most efficient with your time, you don't keep driving past something only to go back the next day, etc. I first started this on my second trip to Paris and it was such a help. 

Once the map is created, I can narrow down what I really want to see/what I think will be too much/waste too much time. Like I said, I am willing to give up the more touristy stuff if I think there is a local experience I can get instead. When everything is said and done, I create a Google Doc with my actual itinerary, I'm super old fashioned and I love to plan so every day is laid out, I am linking an example to when Hannah & I went to Paris here, but usually mine have more details and there is a little box with what to do if something gets rained out or is too crowded. Then I print out said itinerary and stick it in a folder or my laptop case. I create them on Google Docs so that there will always be a copy, but if I am traveling I have no clue where there will be wifi {especially in Europe} so it is always nice to have the paper copy. 

Flights, Hotels, Rentals

This is probably my worst knowledge base. For my hotels I check on Orbitz, the individual hotel sites, and just googling around to see what is the best option. If you asked what my favorite hotel chain is, the answer would be Marriott by far, but I will pretty much stay in anything. For rental cars I am a huge fan of Avis, if you become a preferred customer you can just walk into the garage and get your car without the hassle of waiting in line. Silvercar is also really awesome. They only rent out Audis and they pick you up/drop you off at the airport, which is kind of nice. Plus you get to drive an Audi around the city for your stay. In regards to flights, I am all about searching for the cheapest, most direct flight. I don't use a price comparing site, I just go to each website individually on different tabs and compare. Southwest and Delta are my go-tos because I grew up with Delta and I fly to & from Austin on Southwest. But JetBlue is pretty great and if you are flying international look at Virgin


I would like to say I think I am a master packer, but I am also a "no-waste" packer. I don't play the game of "what if I need this, what about if I do this..." I make an Excel {or Google Sheets} spreadsheet that lists the day, the activities I am going to be doing, what top, bottom, shoes, under garments, and accessories I need. In another column I create the other necessities like a rain-jacket, pajamas, etc. I then only pack those days worth of clothes and a few extra pairs of underwear. I like efficiency when I pack and I like already knowing what I will be wearing on each day of my trip, that way when I get up in the morning I am not taking time out of my vacation to figure out what to wear. I've made a template here, in case you want to try out my way to packing clothes on your next trip.  One of the biggest tips I can give in regards to packing, is please look at the weather of the destination before you pack. You don't want to get somewhere and it's raining the whole week but you neglected to bring a rain jacket or umbrella. Also, if you are a digital person/like to have your packing list on your phone, I would 100% recommend the Saving Grace App. You can pick the type of trip you're taking and it will automatically populate with common things you would need {if you were going somewhere in winter it would put gloves, jackets, etc}. Plus, it puts all of the other things you might forget like chargers, first aid, makeup, etc. I have used it for so many trips and it will send you reminders, it is truly great for packing. 

Go Forth and Wander

Hopefully this guide helped you! If you are ever looking for trip planning advice, or help with an itinerary, please feel free to reach out to me, I have been to 40 states and 7 countries so I have a broad knowledge of what to do in a lot of places. 

P.S. Stay tuned for tomorrow's post: The Ultimate Guide to Paris! 

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Articles I'm Reading

  1. I am always really interested in airline food, so this is a good read if you are too // Good Food in Economy? Six Airlines are Making it Happen // New York Times
  2. This is me and Hannah // A Photo Lovers Guide to Houston // Sugar & Cloth
  3. So cute // Nautical in Navy // Design Darling 
  4. I am really excited about this year's sale // Anniversary Sale 2017 // Nordstrom 
  5. I am thinking about converting my entire wardrobe to this... // 'Dirty Dancing' Style Rules to Follow This Summer // Man Repeller
  6. OMG that dress // Millennial Pink // Blush Accessories // Atlantic Pacific
In Case You Missed It:
  1. I talked about the movies I watch when I've had a bad day.
  2. If you follow my Instagram, which please go do that right now, I have been dropping hints about this upcoming week's travel theme. 
  3. I recapped my first half of this year...and where I am at with some goals. 

Friday, July 7, 2017

1/2 Year Recap

As an avid reader of College Prepster, I was reading her blog on Wednesday morning and found this post she made about how it is halfway through 2017 {I'm sorry what?!} and where she is at with her goals/how she is feeling about the rest of the year. 
I was instantly inspired. I always make goals at the beginning of 2017 but I never thought to make a 1/2 way point post? Why? I don't know...here goes nothing! I decided to organize my goals first by my resolutions and then just some overall thoughts at the bottom. 

#1: Organize - I talked about how unorganized my inbox was and how I wanted to change that. Well we're halfway through the year and I officially switched to Gmail, hello 101 in 1001, and I feel so so so much better about my email than I ever have. The rest of my life isn't very organized...yet...I think I did a pretty good job in the spring semester but in the summer it kind of all goes back to non-organized. I am waiting for the perfect time to fill my new Lilly planner up with everything I have going on in the fall and I actually started studying the subjects I am taking this fall a few weeks ago hoping that understanding the basic concepts really gives me a leg up in the fall. I feel so #organized {just kidding}. 

#2: Activity - Okay, this is in two parts. First, I did spend more time with other friends in the spring. I really did become closer to my sisters in my spirit group and I hung out more with my Comm Council littles and other friends. I am patting myself on the back for that because it was hard. Also, I did stay on campus more and I studied in new libraries/buildings, it felt so nice to connect with my college again. Second, I don't think I made new friends at college...I don't think so. This is something I want to work on more in the fall, I need to be able to make friends on the first day...I need to. I'm adding a new part to this goal and that is to explore Austin more, I only have one year left and I need to take advantage of it while I can.

#3: Effort - First of all, I was so freaking proud of myself. I put on an actual outfit every day of class/internship except for about 10. It took so much effort not to just throw on leggings but I think I had more confidence because I put effort into my appearance for myself.  Another thing I wanted to do was work harder on my journalism because it had fallen to the wayside and I did!!! I now write for Longhorn Life, HerCampus, Spoon U and I interned at Texas Monthly, prior to that I only wrote once a month for Longhorn Life. Lastly, I wanted to spend more time studying and I really did. This was an incredibly hard semester for me {3 business classes and a hard journalism class}. I worked so hard and I felt amazing when the semester was over because I tried my absolute hardest. However, I don't think I did the best job of compartmentalizing things, this is something I am really looking to accomplish in the fall. 

#4: Motto - My motto this year, as cheesy as it is {and believe me, I know how cheesy it is}, is "If not now, then when?" I would give myself a 30% on this one because I did get out more and try new restaurants, I did put more effort into studying, I did hangout with people more and I did spend more time on campus. But I am in such D E N I A L about graduating. I won't even think about it, if I feel my brain going down that path I quickly steer it back to the task at hand. I am actually terrified of going back in the fall because it will mean the beginning of the end. But I'm going to have to accept it at some point, which is my goal for August 30th: Accept Your Fate. And then learn to go with the motto....we'll see. 

Overall, I have had a really good 2017, there were some downs but I think there were more ups. Everything can always be improved upon and I agree that it should be. However, my boss' boss talked to the interns a few weeks ago and he said something about how we spend so much time focusing on what we are bad at that we forget to focus on what we are really good at. I think we are all guilty of saying, "well I'm terrible at Spanish" let me spend the next 4 years trying to get really good at it, when you might just be terrible at Spanish. I'm not saying we don't need to improve, we do, but there has to be a way to where you don't lose yourself in the process. You are who you are and that is an amazing, unique person. Don't let Spanish/Finance/Painting/Talking to Boys get you down -just be you. 

Have yourself a cupcake - 2017 is halfway over. 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Bad Day Movies

Everyone has a bad day, it happens. It hadn't happened to me in a long time, I really try to have the best day possible from when I wake up to when I go to bed. But sometimes things just don't work out, and that is fine. I'm sure everyone has their own ritual for how to deal with a baddie but my go-to is watching some {relatively} low quality or goofy movies to get me feeling better. 

  1. 10 Things I Hate About You - Hannah and I share this film as one of our all time favorites and if you are ever down about a boy, this is a must watch. Or if school is feeling overwhelming, opt for this one, who knows you might get inspired by the Shakespeare references. BEST PARTS: Patrick singing to Katarina, any scene with Ms. Perky, the paintball scene and the very last part of the movie. 
  2. Charade - This might be my favorite Audrey movie {the jury is still out} but it is sooo up there. Cary Grant is the perfect love interest and the scenery is absolutely gorgeous. It provides a great getaway from your life with a scandalous mystery and the Paris skyline. BEST PART: The very beginning when Audrey is at that ski resort.
  3. Clueless - This is my go-to favorite movie if I don't think people will know what To Catch a Thief is because it is the most iconic fashion movie in my life. I watched it when I was really trying to figure out my style and Cher gave me a good idea of what I wanted. The movie is so bad it is beautiful. BEST PARTS: Anytime Cher uses her virtual closet, the very begnning when Cher describes her mom and Dion, Cher attempting to pass her driving test, Cher shopping on Rodeo Drive,  and the kiss between Cher & Josh on the steps. 
  4. The Man From U.N.C.L.E. - I just found out they are making a second one of this film and I am so excited! The first one is one of my go-tos when I need some hot guys in my life because both Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer are beautiful humans. Not to mention my forever girl crush is Alicia Vikander. The clothing alone makes this a wonderful pick. This one is great because you feel patriotic at the end, the bad guys get caught and the good guys do a lot of work while looking great. BEST PARTS: When Gaby is shopping for clothes, Gaby and Ilya's hotel room fight {+ her drunk dancing}, Solo and Victoria in her tent at the race and Solo after escaping the factory when he discovers the packed dinner. 
  5. The Other Woman - Oh this one is the b e s t if you are going through a breakup or just down in the dumps about your relationships. The movie got me because Kate's wardrobe is something I aspire to have. The dynamic between the three women is kind of refreshing and those scenes in the Hamptons are to die for. Watch this with a glass of wine and some chocolate and just feel like you're getting back at the world. BEST PARTS: When Kate and Carly go spy on Mark at the beach, anytime Kate's dog is involved, Phil and Carly at Phil's beach house, and any scene with Nicki Minaj.
  6. Bachelorette - This movie is bad. Bad as in low budget and inappropriate in general...but yet so, so good. This one, in my opinion, is better than Bridesmaids purely because Bridesmaids depresses me, like Kristen Wig's character is so sad in that movie. But Bachelorette's characters are unapologetic-ly horrible. They do not care what people think {well one does but she doesn't really care in the end}. It's great if you want to laugh with your girlfriends after a stressful day. BEST PARTS: The beginning when each character is introduced, Regan and Tevor's tension, Gena when she deals with the wedding dress disaster and any scene Katie is in honestly. 
  7. Fool's Gold - I am a sucker for old Matthew, back before the indie films & the Oscar. Not saying I don't still love him {I'm obsessed} but there is something about those terrbile rom coms that make me happy. But I'm a purest, not a fan of Ghosts of Girlfriends Past; the older ones will only do. Fool's Gold is the best because it is set in the most beautiful place on Earth {well one of them at least} plus the banter between him and Kate Hudson's character is just so cute. He is so dumb he will make you feel smart, so if you need that after your bad day, go forth.  BEST PARTS: Nigel and Tess's interactions, Gemma in general, anything Alfonz says and the fact that Kevin Hart plays a rapper named Bigg Bunny.
  8. The Mummy - Oh wow, this one is awful. But I watch this film franchise when I am sick and want to be anywhere else but my bed. I have always enjoyed any film about adventure with a healthy dose of history mixed in and these films really do that. Still surprised that there is a version of this movie out now with Tom Cruise because the Brendan Fraser versions will always be the best. BEST PARTS: The romantic chemistry between Rick and Evelyn, Jonathan's idiocy and the parts in the museum in Egypt. 
  9. St. Trinian's - I watched this the other day because I needed a mood booster. Let me preface this by saying, this movie was meant for children {or tweens, whatever}. It has a lot of child humor but also there are some great jokes for the adults. It's about a British boarding school for girls but it isn't your normal school. They are distilling alcohol, blowing stuff up and perform the ultimate heist. One man plays quite a few rolls and Colin Firth makes some appearances. BEST PARTS: The game, Russell Brand's character, the transformation of Annabelle and any scene with Chelsea. 
   BONUS: Bring it On - I just re-watched this because it turns out my mother had never seen it? E! did a marathon of one of the greatest films of all time on Monday so I made her watch it and it is truly one of the best mood lifters. 

Wednesday, July 5, 2017


Oh my goodness y'all...having a long weekend was a) the best thing ever but b) I didn't write a blog post for today. I didn't open my laptop once from Thursday evening to Tuesday night and that was a wonderful feeling. Now that I am working {it still doesn't feel normal} I realize how draining days can be and when I get home from my internship I just want to watch 30 Rock {it's my second time binging} and eat cookies. I try to avoid that and do other things but it was so nice to just hang out with my parents for, four full days. Now I am back in Sarasota to finish out the last half of my internship {with a little trip to Colorado toward the end}. So I promise today I am going to Starbs after work to get a ton of posts done. PLUS, did y'all know next week is travel week on the blog? I will be sharing such good posts I really encourage you to stop by. I'll be giving hints into the posts on my Instagram story {@hautetable} all week this week. Have a wonderful Wednesday -xoxo darling, Hayden.


Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Fourth of July

I hope you and your family have a wonderful Fourth-xoxo darling, Hayden