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A Letter to the New Team

25 Sep

An alumni letter I wrote for my favorite dance team at MSU ❤


Easy Cash for Post Grads

17 Sep

girl with wallet

Struggling for money while looking for your first job? Well you are not alone. Since I have started my journey towards finding a full time job, I’ve also had a chance to compile some ideas to make fast cash while being unemployed. With help from some good friends along the way (god bless you all) here is what I have found successful so far.


 Craigslist: My mom sold three dresses from high school dances (Homecoming, Snowcoming, and Prom). It was a lot of trial and error, but the most success came from hacking the price in half and then going just a bit under that price. You won’t get what you paid originally. Dress styles go in and out way too quick nowadays. Make some struggling parents day and sell your gorgeous $400 ball gown at an affordable rate.

Facebook Forums: Some university’s have different selling forums which including anything from furniture to books to clothes. Take nice pictures of what you are selling and be as professional and accessible as possible. College kids are lazy, so the easier the transaction, the better.

Cash for Gold: Any old out-of-date, or broken gold jewelry can be turned in for cash. Try and ask grandma or mom if there are any old pieces they won’t wear again and aren’t interested in keeping. Cash for Gold lets you do the whole transaction online.

Gazelle: Sell your old cell phone for money, as long as your old iPhone or Android was left in good condition. You can check how much money your phone is worth right on the Gazelle website!

pool money


Go back to the basics, like when you were in elementary school trying to make money. (Leave the lemonade stands in the past). Reach out to relatives, friends, and especially neighbors to offer your services for babysitting. Even if they don’t need you at the moment, they may know somebody who does.


After cleaning out my old room, I found an ancient Winnie the Pooh piggy bank that was absolutely stacked with old coins I had collected over the years. I am currently in the process of wrapping them all up and turning them into the bank for cash. You can also do CoinStar, but the machine will charge you a significant service fee.

piggy bank


One of the easiest ways I’ve made cash is collecting clothes and accessories to sell at Plato’s Closet. This is a good option for lightly worn, name brand clothes/accessories you have purchased to get a second chance with somebody else. You will end up giving them away to Good Will after 5 years of sitting in your closet anyways, put a little effort in and you could come out with some cash. I’ve made up to $40 using Plato’s.



A good amount of my friends and I have also found success in offering freelance work in our fields. One of my friends picked up a quick job using his journalism skills to film a small town documentary. Another has had success creates websites on the side for small companies. I have personally picked up choreography jobs with different dance studios in my area. Give it a shot and reach out to local small businesses who can’t necessarily afford the big time companies.



Try a trip to the casino, invest in some scratch off cards, buy the 6.4 billion power ball ticket for $1, or visit a local pool hall like my dad did when he was in his 20’s. (He was sort of a pool shark growing up). Some people are just lucky, you know who I am talking about, and gosh do we hate them for it. A little gambling is fine, just as long as you always take my mother’s advice…and DON’T LOSE.

marilyn money

Those are the quick money makers I’ve found successful so far. Shout out to my friends who gave me their input or inspiration. Do you have any good ideas for making quick money? Feel free to share below!


Till next time,


TJ21: Instagram – Inspiration

30 Aug

The Journey 21

TJ21-Instagram-Inspiration-Mens-Fashion Instagram is one of my favorite places to glean inspiration from when it comes to style, discovering new brands, and photography. I recently discovered @thedressedchest; he literally  just posts pictures of his dressed chest lol. If you have an instagram and you like men’s style I’d definitely recommend that you follow him. His style is always on point! 😀

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Vogue Japan October 2014 : La Canzone Del Mare

30 Aug


Vogue Japan presents in its October 2014 issue a beautiful fashion story featuring items from the latest Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda collection and styled by Italians Anna Dello Russo and Giovanna Battaglia . The beautiful images were shot by Boo George in the beautiful landscaping of Capri, Italy which is also the place where the Italian designers presented their haute couture collection this summer .
Vogue Japan October 2014 issue : 
Editorial : La Canzone Del Mare

Models : Nadja Bender, Kinga Rajzak & Dalianah Arekion

Photographer : Boo George

Styling : Anna Dello Russo & Giovanna Battaglia
Vogue Japan October 2014 Vogue Japan October 2014 Vogue Japan October 2014 Vogue Japan October 2014 Vogue Japan October 2014Vogue Japan October 2014

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My Top Ten Festival Tips from Lollapalooza 2014

27 Aug


A few weeks ago I experienced my first big music festival, Lollapalooza. Being one of the biggest music events in the Mid-West, the festival features 3 days of concerts from both main stream and off-the-chart artists in Grant Park, Chicago. Below are my top ten festival tips I collected while attempting Lolla for the first time!

TIP #1:  It’s hot. Really think through your outfits and prepare to stay hydrated. Luckily there are free water filling stationsblog lola1 sponsored by CamelBak. A lot of festival goers had fancy little water backpacks with a spout over their shoulder (see photo on the right). I just packed an empty water bottle in my cross body bag to fill once I got there. Either way, make sure you are drinking water between all those beers! Light fabrics and comfy shoes are a must. At the end of the day nobody cares how cute your outfit is, just that you can last 10 hours of standing in it.

TIP #2: Create a plan of action. Print out the festival line-up and highlight where each artist is you want to see. The festival is about a mile long with 8 stages. You’ll want to arrive 45 min early to a concert if possible to get a decent spot within viewing distance of the stage. If artists are playing back to back, we skipped the last song or two to head to the next stage. It’s packed and takes longer than you might think.

TIP #3: Take the time to explore all the great things Lolla has to offer. They had everything from a Farmer’s Market, to a free artist-signing booth, to Beer and Wine Gardens for a chance to relax. We saw some great festival clothes lined up in tents, and made a point to enjoy a craft beer between shows where we played corn hole and got our hair braided by one of the sponsor tents. So fun!


TIP #5: Bring a portable phone charger. If you are like me, you want to capture all those special festival moments as they are happening. This means a lot of camera phone, videos, Instagram, and texting. I brought a portable charger small enough to fit in my bag and recharge at lunch between concerts. Also a good thing to keep in mind if you meet some cool people and want to meet up later before your phone dies!

TIP #6: Be sure to check out some of the after parties. It just takes some research and a little bit more money for tickets to enjoy a great after show. It’s a chance to get a little more intimate with your favorite artists verses the huge festival shows. The sooner you research options the better, the shows all sell out pretty fast.

TIP #7: Be sure to try some of the great food that’s offered at Chow Town, a collection of tents in the middle of the festival. We had anything from authentic Chicago pizza to a delicious root beer float to quench our sweet tooth and thirst. Everything looked great and there are many different options ranging from American to Vegan dishes. Everything was pretty quick, especially with the “tap to pay” option with our wristbands.

TIP #8: People suck. You are going to be pushed, shoved, spilled on, yelled at, laughed at, and insulted. There wasn’t one concert where we weren’t cut in front of for a worse view of the performers. This takes a little time to get used to, but once you get over it you’ll enjoy yourself 10x more. It’s going to happen, so all you can do is go with the flow.

P1040342 - Version 2

TIP #9: Über was a lifesaver and a big promotion at Lollapalooza this year. We were hesitant at first to try the personal taxi service, but it turned out extremely well. Cabs never took longer than 15 minutes, and only once were we forced to wait that long. Getting to and from the festival was a breeze and the promo gave each of us one free ride. I urge people to take advantage of the app. I was pretty impressed by how well it worked with so many people in the park each night.

TIP #10: Don’t be afraid to let loose and truly enjoy the concerts. There were moments where I was the only one dancing around and jamming to my favorite song, and they were some of my best memories of the weekend! When you let yourself go and vibe the music with the thousands of people around you, it is truly a magical moment.



Let The Job Search Begin!

26 Mar

Let The Job Search Begin!

The Brunette Abroad: Hangin’ Loose in Hawaii

13 Mar

Aloha Readers!

Now that my last college spring break is over, I wanted to take the time to reflect on my final experience abroad last summer. On our flight back from Australia, we decided to take a seven day pit stop in Hawaii. My mind is especially wandering to the beautiful white sand beaches while I am stuck in the stormy, snowy weather of the Midwest.

Our extensive amount of luggage was a comical sight to see. After 3 months living out of a suitcase in Australia, we were forced to lug all of this crap to our hostel. The cab driver was not very happy with us.


We stayed in a hostel in Honolulu, Hawaii right off the coast of Waikiki Beach. Our group of five girls stayed in a room with various visitors from Norway, China, Germany and of course, the US. The second we got settled into our rooms, we headed right to the beach to catch up on our tans. It seemed like a good idea at the time…


Afterwards we came inside from a long day of relaxation to major sun burns… YIKES. Let me just add we wore SPF 30 and still woke up the next day fried to a crisp.


Our second day started out with a heavy dose of SPF 90 along with cotton t-shirts in order to hike Diamond Head National Park. Old volcano’s and ancient WWII bunkers kept us preoccupied until we reached the top. We caught a breathtaking sight of Honolulu making the sweltering hike 100% worth it..


as well as goofing off with some other great sights along the way…


Our next big adventure consisted of a night out with our hostel roommates, who happened to be from California. We decided to pub crawl 5 different bars downtown and it was a total blast! We spent the night meeting a ton of new friends from all over the world and dancing the night away. I am happy to call those roomies my friends still to this day! 🙂


The next day was followed with a very special visit to the Pearl Harbor Memorial Site. My friend Cortney and I woke up early in order to pay our respects to all of the brave soldiers who gave their lives fighting for our freedom during WWII almost 72 years ago. I have to admit I cried like a baby after taking the charter out to the USS Arizona Memorial placed above one of the sunken battleships. The whole experience was mind-blowing and something I will never forget. It served as a great reminder of how proud I am to be American…



To conclude our incredible stopover on the island of Oahu, we decided to attend a traditional Luau at Germiane’s. The crew got all dressed up for a night of hawaiian food and entertainment. Each of us was adorned with a beautiful shell lei upon our arrival and handed our drink tickets for the night. We enjoyed an extensive buffet of all you can eat Hawaiian foods including roast pig, pineapple, pu pu, coconut cake and much more. Once we settled back to our seats after piling on our plates with heaps of authentic foods, we watched a show full of impressive polynesian dancing. Each dance was from a different Pacific Island including Hawaii, New Zealand, Tahiti, and Samoa. We witnessed everything from traditional hula and fire dancing to combat dances with sticks. It was one of the coolest performances I have ever seen!




The Hawaiian Islands are exactly what the media cracks them up to be. I’ve never seen a more naturally stunning environment like the beaches of Oahu. Most of the locals were friendly and absolutely glow with the passion they contain for their homeland. I would recommend visiting Hawaii to each and everyone of my friends, as it’s so full of beauty, serenity, excitement and relaxation.

This post concludes the last of my study abroad installment to my blog. Be sure to check out the rest of my posts featuring my experiences interning in Australia and feel free to post any comments/questions if you are curious about traveling abroad!



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