Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Uninspired and full of Procrastination...

Sorry for being so absent the last few days. And even a little bit last week. I just haven't been feeling quite myself lately. Not sure why that is. I have been pretty busy though, too, which is part of the problem. I just feel so uninspired to do anything creative, including blogging, lately.

I shut down my shop today (it's only temporary, I promise) in hopes of getting my inspiration back. It doesn't help that I'm running rather short on supplies now, and not having enough moolah to purchase supplies makes it kind of difficult to run. But that should be changing quite soon!

Anyway, tomorrow kicks of a new Photo-a-Day challenge that I will most certainly be taking part of. I didn't catch the memo for the January Photo-a-Day challenge, and didn't want to start late, so I held on until the Feb challenge. I have attached the photo below if you would like to take part! I'm hoping this will get me back on track and away from the crickets that are taking over my blog at the moment. Again, I apologize for the lack of anything fun over here...

If you are taking part via Instagram, my name is @autumnbalmbotanicals 

Link your name below and I will gladly follow you :o) 


pee-ess. I finally got Catching Fire and Mocking Jay in the mail today (I'm a cheap-o and bought it online) and haven't been away from CF since I got it. Almost 200 pages in. I can honestly say, I really miss reading like this!!! And boy, this book is making my emotions go all haywire. Just like the 5th Harry Potter, but that's a story for another time! ;)

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Giveaway Winner! Congrats!

Via random[dot]org, Joy is the winner! Congrats! I will be emailing you very soon in regards to your awesome win! 


Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Fancy

Most people hate going to the dentist, or even to a regular doctors appointment, well I HATE going to the eye doctor. It gives me that deep feeling of dread and pain in my gut. Why? That horrid Glaucoma test. You know, when they blow the air into your eye!? Yeah, they don't do that just once for me, they do it about ten times. I hate it beyond a doubt!! 

I had gone to the eye doctor last night and I can't even tell you how much I didn't want to go. They always say I have a "higher than average" chance of getting Glaucoma, but I know that they're full of it. But anyways, enough with the bore. The best part about the dreaded eye exam is that I get NEW glasses! Yeeehaaww!!! I opted for the geek chic and I can't wait to show you guys, once I get them of course!! But to minimize (actually, maximize!) my excitement, here are some amazing vintage frames I would love to own... 

These frames are the total inspiration for my new glasses. I wasn't able to find the gradient in the style I wanted (makes me sad), but these are pretty darn close to the one's I got. I just love the color change and the vintage vibe!

I totally love everything about these! They are so cute and trendy, and they aren't prescription so they totally can be worn whenever! Love it! And they are really reasonably priced, too!!

I love the colors of these particular frames. The detailing is fab! I could picture these on a 1950's beauty in a gorgeous dress!

Every time I think of vintage frames, this design comes to mind. I love everything about it!! I'd love a pair, but I can say, they don't look good on me! 

We can't forget the military's bottle-cap glasses! Believe it or not, these baby's are still around to this day. I can't say that anyone in the military would feel cool wearing these, but I think they're pretty awesome! 


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Obsessions are never easy to admit to...

I tell you guys, I tend to get obsessed with certain things...cameras, crocheting, lip balms, yarn, vintage owls, purses, hats and now...nail polish. This is a SICK addiction that I won't be letting up anytime soon (hopefully). I tend to find something that I really want to be interested in and end up purchasing every possible thing you can get for that addiction. But the sickest part of this addiction is...once I have everything for that possible addiction, I tend to toss it to the side and let it collect dust. I've been trying my ever-so-hardest not to do this. This obsession I will be sharing with you is nail polish (not like it's a big surprise or anything, hehe). 

Say hello to my sick obsession. This is NOT my entire collection, let me add, these are just my newest editions (sadly, more have been added to this since I took these photos). If you want specific names, feel free to comment and I can let you know. :) 

The one thing I try do when buying polish is to only buy reduced price or sale items. There are a few instances where of course you can't & you have to end up paying the entire price, but most times you can wait until it goes on clearance (or there is an awesome sale). I've been scoping out the interwebs as of late for some good polishes and have found a few sites that sell brand name polishes (China Glaze anyone??) for a super low price. The only drawback is the shipping. Some offer lower prices and free shipping, which seems to be the best route to take. 

I just joined Sally Beauty Supply's rewards program. It's 5 bucks for a year, but they give you a $5 off coupon of a $5 dollar item or more, which makes it free. This can save you tons of money. I personally like to shop at Sally's because they always have reduced price polishes, plus an additional 50% off the reduced price, can we say savings?? I'm pretty impatient and hate waiting for stuff to come in the mail, so I'd personally rather do that then buy online. But as you can see, I've been getting a wee bit too into this nail thing. I'm even considering starting a nail blog. But that may take this addiction thing a wee bit too far...

I had tried the Sally Hansen nail strips in the past and had a real bad experience. They wouldn't stick and were dried out. Only for me to find out that you aren't supposed to open the package until you are ready to use them on your nails, oops! I tried the clearance holiday one's in the photo above to see if I would have better luck, and I did!! They are still a bit pricy, but now I'll certainly be getting my hands on them more often, especially when they clearance them out!! 

On a totally unrelated subject, don't you hate brain freezes?? I just got a Frappuccino from Starbucks and man, one sip and my brain is frozen and in the worst pain ever! I wonder why that happens!? 

Also, please make sure to enter the giveaway, tomorrow is your last chance!! 


Wednesday, January 25, 2012


There is just TWO more days left to enter my giveaway! Please make sure to do so before it ends on the 27th!!


This, my friends, has to be one of my all time favorite manicures!! I've been dying to get my hands on the perfect Essie color. I have never used them in the past, but have been meaning to for the longest time. Finally I found the perfect color I've been searching for...Lady Like. It reminds me of a mauve type color. This manicure lasted me for DAYS without chipping. It did have very little tip wear, though, but I've never had a manicure last that long in my life. 

I then did my ring finger this pretty pink glitter from Ulta. 

I then topped it with Seche Vite Quick-Dry Top Coat! Love it! I highly recommend getting this top coat. I do love my Orly top coat, but I love this one just a little bit more! It works WONDERFULLY and forms a tough barrier over your nail & color. It adds the perfect amount of gloss to your color and seals it in for days! Tomorrow I'll share you guys my newest polishes! Yeah, I'm obsessed...


Sunday, January 22, 2012

My Love/Hate Relationship With Antique Shopping!

Oh, this story is pretty much as epic as Romeo + Juliet. Actually it's not. But it's close. My mom is an antiques nut. Ever since I was a wee little baby, she's been dragging me to antique malls, thrift shops, estate sales, rummage sales and the like. Some days I'd love it, but most days I'd hate it. And here I'm mostly talking about antique malls (I love thrift shopping). 

Why do I hate it? Because you rarely find treasures in a load of junk (and my mom is an extremely slow shopper, ugh, so it doesn't make shopping easy). And most of those treasures are OUTRAGEOUSLY priced. That's why I hate going. Why fling the few things I want in front of my face & I know I can't have it? Especially when I know I can get it cheaper at say...Goodwill (when I can find it that is)!? We went to three huge Antique malls today in Waukesha, WI after church. She bribed me into going, especially telling me we'd only go to 2 of the three (and that I'd get the second and third book of the Hunger Games trilogy, hehe). Yeah, that never happened. But anyways, so I took a few Instagram shots in the malls (I'm too chicken to bring my normal camera with me) & I'd like to share them with you! 

They had a lot of really old photographs, like this one, she actually creeped me out. Must be that murderous look in her eye ;) 

Cute little tins!

The girl planter on the right is SO pretty. I have one similar to her in my room, even with the pearl earring, but she isn't as pretty as this one!

An old cash register.

Guys, I wasn't kidding when I said my mom is really in to antiques. She collects and sells them to antique dealer(s). See that dresser and end table? Yeah, those used to be ours. This is the main booth my mom sells to. It was really odd to see a lot of our stuff in there, especially because my mom uses all this stuff to decorate our home (then she gets sick of it and sells it). 

I really want the top Pyrex bowl. Like now! :)

Lovin this dresser!

Pretty bead detailing on an old antique bag. 

Okay girls my age, do you remember this Barbie?!?! Part of the "Wedding Party" collection. I squeeled when I seen her, because I HAD (well, still do, somewhere) this doll!!! Oh, memories :)

I did score some goodies (I will be sharing in another post), but I made sure to only buy stuff that was REALLY cheap, or fairly priced for what I wanted it for. I seen a lot of stuff I already had in these antique malls, and what was sad was their pricing. I know these people need to make money and all, but when most of those items are a dime a dozen, you shouldn't be charging five dollars a glass when you could go to Goodwill RIGHT NOW and get it for 49 cents. Legit. Call me whatever you like, but I really hate it when people abuse their pricing rights. Okay rant over, haha. Do you guys like going to antique malls or thrift shops better, how come?


Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Fancy

I love that they used vintage fabric in an embroidery hoop. I have a lot of vintage fabric that I could use up and this would be the perfect way to do it! On a side note, I really love this shop. They have the greatest little things that you could find perfect uses for! 

I love that they made a clutch out of vintage fabric. I'm not a clutch wearer myself, but I can't help but admire great craftsmanship!!

Oh my goodness! Look at that fabric! I love it! It would look pretty snazzy in my room, if I must say so myself!

Here is an awesome vintage fabric bundle. I believe it's a twin sheet and two pillowcases. I like using old vintage sheets for other projects, saves a lot of $$ on buying fabric at the store!

I love this quilt made out of all vintage fabrics. This has to be the prettiest one I've seen yet! The center is made out of an old tea towel. It's beautiful!!

  • Last night I finally got ahold of the first book in the Hunger Games trilogy. Cannot.wait.to.read.it. (!!!)
  • I love Mandy's 23 before 24 list! I'm really debating on making one of these when I turn 24 (yikes) this year!
  • I just found this blog, Dear Lizzy, the other day. It's filled with DIY's, fancy craftiness and gorgeous colorful photos! A new obsession... 
  • Goodnight Little Spoon is a blog I stumbled upon when I was looking for the Regional Dialect Meme list. She is a fun Aussie lifestyle blogger. I really love her outfit posts, they're so vintage and inspiring!
I hope you guys have a great Friday. As for me, I will be cleaning my butt off, and reading, because we have a mini snowstorm underway. I really can't wait for spring!!!!


Thursday, January 19, 2012

What in my Bag // First Edition

I've been wanting to do one of these posts since I started blogging. I have A LOT of purses, but not very many of them have good storage. Last night, my mom and I visited Plato's Closet. They have a ton of Vera Bradley bags there. I never was a fan, always thought they were ugly and grandma-ish. But for some reason, the more I seen them, the more they grew on me. So I found the perfect bag last night at PC. I was pretty happy, it's in perfect condition and was pretty cheap. What particularly sold me was the storage space on the inside. There are six...ahem, let me repeat that, SIX compartments in addition to the center of the purse. Awesomeness much?

I really love the design and coloring. Suits me perfectly!

Look at all those side compartments, gasp! The best part is all my items fit in the bag nice and snug. How awesome.

I tend to carry the most random items around. I have pens/Sharpies, various lip balms, work keys, lock de-icer, a pocket calendar, crochet hook (never know when ya need it!), ibuprofen (I always need this), Pepto chewables (again, never know when ya need it), a purse table holder, yarn/thread scissors, pouches purchased from The Dainty Squid, a journal/notebook and hand lotion. 

I just picked up these scissors at Joann's the other day. I've been looking for a pair for quite awhile. They were under 10 bucks, which is pretty great because I didn't want to spend a fortune on them. Some day I'd like to invest in better one's, but they will do for now! 

Do you have a "What's in my Bag?" post? If so, feel free to link it below, I'd love to see what's in your bag! :)


Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Today, you may notice many sites are blacked out. Count me in as one of them. This ridiculous law could censor this blog, and essentially take away my shop, as well as everyone else's. We as Americans can stand up and fight against congress! I'm by no means a political person, but when this is something dear to me, I will stand up and fight (gosh, never thought I'd be protesting against something in my life, lol) against something so insane and unconstitutional! Please write to your representative and express your feelings regarding this. Sign petitions and blackout your site. Don't be unheard...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Instaram Drop

It's been awhile since I've shared some of my Instagram photos with you guys. Life hasn't been that interesting for me as of late. I started orientation at my new job today. I will now be assisting the elderly in their homes. I'm pretty excited (and really scared) to meet my first client. I can't wait to hear their life stories, see family photos and help them achieve a better way of life. It's been snowing far too much for my liking lately here in good ol Wisconsin. But anyway, here are some photos for you guys!!

This is of my pup's paws during our first major snowfall. Snow has been majorly lacking here (which I'm really thankful for) but it's making its nasty appearance now. 

I was organizing my felt and thread collection tonight. Wowza, I had more than I thought! It still doesn't look like a lot, but it's way more than I expected!

Wow, I did a sloppy job!! I've been trying to perfect my nail painting lately (which I actually haven't been doing that bad), but I was pretty excited how this turned out & I didn't bother to clean it up before I shared it, hehe.

My wall owl, Owliver (yeah, I'm a dork) sporting his very own pixy  hat. 

I hope you guys have a good night!!


Monday, January 16, 2012

Vlog // Regional Dialect Meme

So I finally did it! I made my first vlog. Actually, it's the second video that I did, but the first wouldn't upload. I did the Regional Dialect Meme that's been going around for quite awhile. I messed up a few times in this video but kept it in there. I think I sound pretty weird and even look strange, but that's okay! If you made a video, or are going to, feel free to leave the link below!! I also have the list for you guys incase you feel like making your own!!

Say These Words:
Aunt, Route, Wash, Oil, Theater, Iron, Salmon, Caramel, Fire, Water, Sure, Data, Ruin, Crayon, Toilet, New Orleans, Pecan, Both, Again, Probably, Spitting Image, Alabama, Lawyer, Coupon, Mayonnaise, Syrup, Pajamas, Caught
Now answer these questions:
What is it called when you throw toilet paper on a house?
What is the bug that when you touch it, curls into a ball?
What is the bubbly carbonated drink called?
What do you call gym shoes?
What do you say to address a group of people?
What do you call the kind of spider that has an oval-shaped body and extremely long legs?
What do you call your grandparents?
What do you call the wheeled contraption in which you carry groceries at the supermarket?
What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining?
What is the thing you change the TV channel with?


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Blogging Woes // The Dreaded Weight Issue

Of course, inspiration to write a post hits at 2:15 in the morning when I really need to be sleeping. Really, Rachel, really? Anyway, this post is about weight. Yeup, I said it. In the last couple weeks, I've stumbled upon various blogs. Fat acceptance, inspirational weight loss journeys, gals who are heavy and are taking the plunge to get healthy, etc.

If you know me, I am VERY indecisive. My mind changes a mile a minute. I always see two sides to everything (That's why I'm not a good person to argue with or make core decisions...I may sound like I'm contradicting myself when in reality, I'm not), but I'm really trying to give an answer for all sides. Anyways, my mind changes about weight all the time. I am at the highest weight I've been my entire life. I was skinny when I was little. I had a small body, tiny waist and I certainly was NOT big boned.

Somehow, some event in my life triggered me towards food. Not sure when or what caused this, but it did. It became my best friend. And it still is! When most kids were losing their baby fat, I was gaining mine and then some. When I hit middle school, I was 207 pounds. Granted, I was super tall, so I didn't look that ridiculous, and I was still wearing decent sized clothing. In high school, I was a size 18. I was super duper self conscious then, when I really shouldn't have been. I was a bit heaver than the average girl. But in high school, to everyone, I was considered fat. I hated myself. I hated going to school and being around a bunch of skinny blonde bimbos with no morals and a crap ton of self esteem. I decided to layer myself up with hoodies and never look cute...Until senior year. I still was the same weight, but I decided to shed my hoodies and wear more feminine clothing. As that year went on and I moved on to college, I began gaining a sense of style and acceptance of my body.

I still had my moments of dread and hatred towards myself, but I started to embrace it, because it was apart of me and I knew I had to deal. I eventually got fed up and joined Weight Watchers. I was around 245 pounds when I did that. I thought I looked disgusting then and couldn't bare to look at myself any longer. I dropped around 30 or so pounds and ended up nearing my middle school weight. I was stoked, happy and loved myself again. I was a size 16 and could fit in Gap jeans (God, do I miss those).

But even though I felt great and looked good, I missed food. I wasn't for portion control and depriving myself of the things I honestly enjoyed. So I gained it back. And then another 30 pounds. That was something I didn't want to happen, but knew it was a risk when I went on a diet. I felt lost again, unhappy with my looks. But I knew I had to deal with it, because I loved food more than how I looked. I loved having the freedom to eat what I wanted and not to spend countless hours at the gym.

Then my dad got cancer. This girl does not handle bad news well. At all. I'm not the type to be all "Woe is me", so I dealt with my issues alone. I hated life so much when he got sick. I didn't care. I did things I never once believed in, I lost a lot of hope for life and myself. Because of my carless actions, weight began to climb and climb and climb. My dad soon passed on and I lost it. I couldn't handle life like I used to. Any stressful situation sent me off the edge. So again, food was my ally and man, it would never let me down.

Fast forward to now. Now, I'm far beyond that 245 that I once was (and thought was horrid). I'm beyond feeling pretty and comfortable in my own skin. I feel like I did in high school. Some days, I get so inspired from reading fat acceptance blogs that I feel good in my skin and say "Fuck it, this is who I am and I need to accept that." Then the majority of those days, I just feel down. But above all, I really don't care anymore. I feel that if I try to lose this weight again, it'll only send me deeper into weight gain that I know I can't get out of it. I really want to become healthy. Do I want to be skinny? No, I really don't. I just want to be healthy and happy. I just want to be able to go into my favorite clothing stores again and be able to get my size jeans without a problem. I want to not have terrible back pain anymore and be able to feel more energy and life.

But I'm scared. I'm scared that I won't or can't commit to this huge event and that I'll only send myself deeper into weight gain.   I'm scared that I'll have to live my entire life on a treadmill and eating salads (even though the are delish!). I don't like being confined to something, I don't like being told what I can or cannot do. I don't like the feeling of living in a jail cell with no key. But I don't like how I feel now either. I'm so lost between what I want to do and what I should do. I see so many gals lose this weight, only to gain it back. So then, what was the point? You're endangering your body so much by dieting and then gaining back the weight, only to diet again.

Right now I just feel trapped. I want to lose the weight but I'm afraid I won't, or if I do, it'll come back (which I'm sure it will). Maybe I just need to buck up and lose it and just maintain a healthy lifestyle the rest of my life. Get used to working out and let it become a routine instead of something I dread. Or, perhaps I should just stop feeling bad for myself and deal with my body. Why do I have to make certain life decisions so hard? The easy thing to say would to lose it and be done with it, but it's never that easy. I guess this post is more of a personal vent above anything else. I'm kind of at a loss for what to do. I want to lose the weight, I'm just scared. Being scared is what's holding me back, essentially. Perhaps I'll get that big dose of confidence and just do what I should do and see where it takes me. Yeah, that sounds good...
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