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5 Ways To Pamper Yourself This Fall

I am so ready for autumn - you have no idea. But I also recognize that this time of year can be stressful for a lot of people. It's the beginning of the school year, it's the end of the fiscal year and time to balance budgets in a lot of companies, illnesses like the flu ramp up again and Seasonal Affective Disorder rears its ugly head.

Those of you who can't fully enjoy the autumn season have my sympathy. This post is for you.

Well, it's for all of us really, but especially for you! 

Here are 5 relaxing ways you can pamper yourself this fall:

1. Start Dry Brushing

Not only is dry brushing great for exfoliating your skin, it also increases blood flow and stimulates the lymphatic system which can boost your immune system and your mood.

2. Paint Your Nails a Fall Color

Put away the creme polishes and the barely there pink and nude shades, autumn is the time to break out the vampy reds, purples, and blacks. Copper is a good choice for those wanting to stay in neutral territ…

The Indecisive Nature of Libra

Libra is said to be diplomatic, harmonious, and a lover of all things beautiful. They value intelligence, high art, and often have refined taste. Curiously, they are the only sign represented by an inanimate object (the scales) and they function best at moments of stable equilibrium or balance.

That's what all these teen magazine astrology sections would have you believe, anyways, and there's probably some truth to it. I'm a Libra after all and while I can't mould myself to 100% of these so-called Libra traits...some of it is pretty spot on.

I try to see all perspectives and analyze or present them fairly. I am the least confrontational person you will ever meet. I have a particular aesthetic I am rather fond of and enjoy surrounding myself with the quirky things I personally find pleasing and yeah, maybe I spend just a little too much on Korean skincare products. 

Here's the thing about air signs though - we're flighty. And we're insanely indecisive. 

Do I …

What I Found Interesting This Wednesday

This is a cop-out of a blog post, I'm aware, but lots of other bloggers I follow and love post some kind of "list of links" piece once a week or month...so I'm hopping back on that bandwagon as well. Because on ocassion I find interesting things I'd like to share and isn't it better to just include a bunch of links and let you peruse them at your leisure?

Thought so.

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As I mentally prepare for a third date (Curse of the Third Date is totally a thing, by the way), I find myself wondering what happens if, afterwards, you're still not sure if you're really into a person. I know my issue is that I just take an epically long time to warm up to someone new and get comfortable around them...but how does it work for others?

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Do you deal with a lot of anxiety or have a loved one who does? Worrying that your anxiety is a burden on others (or not knowing how to help relieve that burden from an anxious friend) can really add to your stress levels.

Turns ou…

Beer Wall? Beer Wall - Taco Libre Enters The Ring in Saint Paul

Taco Bell ain't got nothing on this place. 

Taco Libre - a fixture over in West Saint Paul - opened up its new location in Lowertown a few months back and when I heard they had a beer wall full of self-serve taps, I had to check it out. Don't get me wrong, I love a good taco place, but I really did come for the beer experience.

Located: Near Wabasha and 5th in downtown Saint Paul
Hours: 10am - 9pm
Menu: Click Here




Brick walls and exposed duct-work don't really set it apart from any other establishment in Saint Paul that's trying to be cool, but Taco Libre made up for the bare bones aesthetic by installing a tap wall with more than 20 options to choose from - much of it craft beer. You can also pour yourself a pint-size Margarita and after a few of those, who's going to complain about the decor?

They have a variety of tacos, burritos, bowls, and something magical called the Machete that I haven't tried yet - you'd have to tag team that monster but I'm game i…

52 Self Discovery Questions - Question #9

9. What's one thing I would like to do more of and why? How can I make that happen?

Since moving to the metro and settling into Saint Paul some three odd years ago, I've been pretty isolated within Saint Paul itself. Granted, there are a lot of fun neighborhoods here and a ton of quirky things to discover and explore - but I haven't seen much of Minneapolis.

And for someone who constantly rips on Minneapolis as the inferior half of the Twin Cities, I think I owe it to myself (and my Saint Paul neighbors) to know precisely what it is I'm defending them against.

Thus, one thing I'd like to do more of this summer (and year, really) is experience some of Minneapolis. I want to check out neighborhoods I normally wouldn't have bothered with. I'd like a tour of establishments that have never been on my radar. I want to compare their green spaces with our (better) ones. I want good reasons to take the Green Line past Snelling Ave.

If you're not local - shame, y…

Welcome to The Mystifying World of Modern Dating

Truth be told, I have no idea why I did this
To set the scene: I had recently gotten out of my last long-term relationship and was finally moving out to start my life anew on my own terms. My ex and I were on (mostly) good terms, still operating as friends and giving each other life advice (and maybe a little dating advice) so it felt like a good time to test out the dating app scene. He'd been perusing the waters of Bumble and Tinder, but I wanted to see for myself just how strange and difficult this land of online dating really was.

The Experiment:

The first dating app I installed was Hinge - their slogan is literally that they are designed to be deleted, they promise lasting results that fast. Within two hours of creating my profile and answering three conversation-hook questions, three different guys and one girl were trying to match with me.

1. Let's call this guy City Pages - since he's a freelance writer for this local publication. We spent a day or two chitchattin…

How to Unlock Your Best Life: Move The Fuck Out!

If you've been reading any of my recent blog posts, a consistent theme has surely cropped up and that has been the desire for me to have my own place to live. A few weeks ago, I actually signed a lease on a new studio apartment - for real.

Nestled in a lovely Stepford-esque neighborhood just south of where I work in Lowertown, this ground level unit is running me less than $700 a month and has freshly painted white walls, newly refinished floors, surround sound speakers and well....excellent water pressure. Because that's important.

Last weekend, I started moving in and it was an adventure:

One member of my moving party cancelled on me the morning of - due to a hangover - and while I was initially bummed at not having her large SUV at my disposal, I made the best of the situation in order to move 80% of my personal belongings via two car trips. A huge shout-out to my cousin and her boy for the assist. And a special thank you to Angie who was battling a hangover of her own and …

52 Self Discovery Questions - Question #6

6. How do I feel about my personality type?
First things first. What is my personality type?

I've taken a good number of the free versions of the Myers-Briggs Type assessment, but it wasn't until I had the opportunity to take the full version at my old workplace that I was able to really unlock just how my brain works. See, I'd always clocked in as INTJ - and that felt pretty on the mark.

I'm definitely the most introverted of all the introvert types, I am definitely on the analytical side, I prefer dealing with logic over emotion, and I need to have all the pieces of a puzzle in place before I can make an informed decision.

Lo and behold, the full assessment pegged me as INTP. Okay, a little off the mark, but they can't be that different, right?

Turns out, they are - but mostly in their dominant and secondary functions - and I'm not going to bore you with those details. You can read all about INTJ versus INTP if you're interested. As I read more deeply abo…

52 Self Discovery Questions - Question #5

5. What is my life’s purpose?

How does anyone answer this question?

Better still, does my life need to have a purpose? Can't I simply exist, taking it all in, with no greater aim? But then, that would become my purpose in life, wouldn't it? Ahhhh the paradox!

No, but truthfully I've always kind of envied those individuals who knew exactly what they wanted to do with their life and what they were all about. They moved with purpose...every action taken was a step towards something meaningful to them.

I've never had that. I used to flit from dream career to dream career, but never really put any effort into working on achieving any of them. I guess I knew all along that most of my "passions" were fleeting. I've never been truly driven to accomplish anything...

Until quite recently, actually.

You see, I had this novel idea (quite literally) that had been stewing in my brain for years, and it wasn't until I made the commitment to participate seriously in la…

52 Self Discovery Questions - Question #4

4. What are the operating principles of my life?
I had to think about what this question was really asking for a moment... and I've concluded that it's about my personal operating system. What are the principles that guide my life and my behavior, what are the values that I live consistently, etc.

There are a lot of principles I like to think I'm abiding by consistently, but let's be real - I'm probably not. So after careful examination, here are the key components to the operating system of my life:

Autonomy

I am my own person. I wasn't always though - I spent a good number of years living in the shadow of others, in service to their goals and dreams instead of my own. I turned 30 a few years ago and it sort of woke me up to how much time I've been wasting living other people's lives. I needed to make some changes and start pursuing what *I* wanted and live how I want to live.

It's still scary, for someone like me who has always had social anxiety a…

Subscription Boxes I Want To Try

I'm a subscription box enthusiast - I've used both Ipsy and Birchbox - and there's no greater feeling in the world than seeing a nicely bundled care package waiting on your doorstep after work! Sadly, I had to cancel all my subscription boxes a while back because finances were too tight to justify them.

With a new job(s) and a new apartment where rent is significantly cheaper, I may be able to indulge one more, but I'm limiting myself to just ONE. The boxes below are the ones I'm most interested in trying - maybe one will strike your fancy too!

Inspire Me Korea

Inspire Me Korea is a Korean Cultural Box that ships worldwide for just $31 a month and features a variety of Korean goods - like skincare products, snack items, and Kpop memorabilia. It's perfect for the Korean enthusiast who is already hooked on K-dramas (like me!) and wants to delve just a bit deeper without buying an expensive plane ticket just yet.



Tokyo Treat

Tokyo Treat is the box for you if you want …

52 Self Discovery Questions - Question #3

3. What are my most important needs and desires? Does my present life fulfill them?

At my core, I am a very internal being. I live in my head a lot - and to be fair, there's a lot happening in there. From the crafting of entire worlds and characters and story arcs to the simple calculations of how many hours I need to work in a week to make sure I can pay rent, my mind is a very busy place to exist within.

Sometimes I need an escape from that. It's critical to prevent mental burnout. One of my most important needs is having a safe space to exist outside of my head and a way to truly connect to my body in real time. Pilates and yoga are great for that, but there's also a need to find a green space in an otherwise concrete jungle. I need to have ready access to quiet parks - for walking, for reading, for meditating, etc.

Socializing with like-minded individuals and those who don't drain my energy is vital to keeping me firmly rooted in the real world, too.

My current lif…