Grad Weekend Recap

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Better late than never right? In May, we were lucky enough to take a break from our post-grad lives and return to Williamsburg for a few days. We were both graduating so it was a weekend full of pomp and circumstance, but we also found some time to revisit our favorite college spots. It was amazing how even after a few months away, Williamsburg still felt like home. Below are some of our favorite moments from Graduation weekend! IMG_8770IMG_8648IMG_8654IMG_8691IMG_8694IMG_8773

Mindfulness & Journaling

Posted by Sara

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In January, when it came time to make my New Year’s Resolution, I was a little uninspired. The resolutions I had relied on for the past four years (get good grades & be more organized) no longer were as applicable since I’d graduated. I thought about resolving to get a job, but that seemed boring. I knew I wanted something that would encourage me to set up my post-college, adult life in a positive way and ultimately, I decided to resolve to embrace mindfulness in 2016.

College, like it is for many people, was full of ups and downs and I constantly felt like I was letting myself be controlled by outside forces.  Adopting mindfulness seemed like a way to break these not so-healthy patterns and infuse a little balance into my life. I planned to be more aware with my emotions (and what was causing them), establish a more regular sleep pattern, and overall live a healthier lifestyle. In the past two months, I’ve been less than successful in maintaining my resolution. A frustrating job search  has often left me upset and questioning my abilities. With much more free time on a daily basis than I’ve had in awhile, it’s been far too easy to indulge in frequent Netflix binges rather than taking the time to do the productive and active things that I enjoy and that often make me feel far better than being a couch potato does.

Realizing how hard it was to break old patterns, two weeks ago I started journaling daily in hopes that it would help me embrace mindfulness. I’d heard from friends and family how it helped them be more productive and it’s amazing how much better I feel even after this short time. Rather than obsessively over-thinking the things that are bothering me and allowing myself to give in to my anxieties, I’ve been working those emotions out at the end of every day. It’s not always easy to sit down and write – mediocre days don’t exactly lend themselves to pouring one’s soul out on paper and because I’ve been journaling on my computer (wouldn’t want to get a pesky hand-cramp on the cusp of a breakthrough), it’s far too easy to let myself get distracted.

Overall, I feel that my mind is quieter throughout the day knowing that I will have my journaling session in the evening and I’ve found the entire process to be very cleansing ( I cringed a little bit as I wrote that; it sounds hokey, but the benefits of journaling can’t be denied).  I’ve also found that writing every day has made it easier to begin and get in the rhythm across the board, which has been beneficial for job applications and writing blog posts. It feels good to know that I’m taking proactive steps towards mindfulness and a healthier lifestyle, even if I still have a little ways to go.

Insta Inspiration

Posted by Sara

Insta Inspiration // Candid Statement

Instagram is probably one of my favorite social media platforms. Between the perfectly styled fashion shots, the beautiful food photography, and the enviable vacation photos, looking through Instagram provides a little breath of fresh air on a daily basis (even if it sometimes leads to some serious FOMO). Recently, I’ve noticed that Instagram users are starting to post inspirational quotes from celebrities and scholars alike. The above message (which Caroline posted when she was knee-deep in studying for exams) has become my motto anytime I’m having a less than stellar day. Here are four more inspirational ‘grams that made me pause and reflect (and double tap lightning speed) when I saw them on my feed.

Insta Inspiration // Candid Statement

This message from Magnolia Rouge is an excellent reminder that when in the midst of a struggle (whether it be from the semester from hell or hitting a wall in the middle of a workout) things often seem worse than they are. Once you push through,  many struggles fade in the background and ultimately, we all becomes stronger people from our troubles.

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Reese Witherspoon posted this the other day and it resonated with me. When I am in the midst of any strong emotion, it colors everything I do and often becomes all-encompassing (especially when I’m upset or frustrated). This message is something I need to remember every time I’m feeling overwhelmed and letting that emotion dictate my decisions.

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The goop Instagram is inspirational in many ways- the bright shots have us all dreaming of early morning yoga classes followed by a fresh-pressed juice even if we tend to hit the snooze button more often than not. I’ve been feeling uninspired across the board lately and as spring swiftly approaches, this Instagram was the kick in the butt I needed to push myself a little bit more.

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Girls on the Run is actually the philanthropy that Gamma Phi Beta, the social sorority Caroline and I are alumnae of,  partnered with. We loved the program that teach young women social resiliency, good self-esteem skills and healthy living. As women, it’s so easy to compliment each other on surface level things (“Your hair looks great today!”). Compliments like these always make me smile and brighten my day, but I also love the idea of looking for other, perhaps deeper ways we can compliment our friends, family, and colleagues.

I’d love to know- where do you find inspiration in the day to day?

5 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues

Beat the Winter Blues // Candid Statement

Between the short days and iffy weather, January and February are often long, dreary months. Winter has its moments, but around this time of year it starts to feel a bit old. The excitement of the holidays have passed and spring seems far off. Here are a few of our favorite ways to get through the winter blues:

  1. Bring on the citrus: Citrus season is certainly a bright spot when the rest of the produce aisle seems a little lackluster. Blood oranges are a personal favorite- the dark color seems very winter appropriate and because they’re hard to find other times of year, eating one feels like a special treat.
  2. Brighten it up: A great way to up your mood is to add some bright color to the darker tones of your winter wardrobe. Whether it’s a patterned scarf, a fun manicure, or even just some bright socks only you know you’re wearing, something that makes you smile when you see it will make cold weather a little less dismal.
  3. Get moving: It’s easy to feel very ‘blah’ this time of year. The short days make it easy to skip a workout – after all, nobody wants to be running outside on an icy sidewalk AND in the dark. Taking some time to go on a walk or doing some yoga are enjoyable ways to off-set some of the winter laziness. Winter is also a great time to try out some snow-based sports, like skiing and snowboarding.
  4. Embrace some winter moodiness: Snuggling under a blanket to watch a movie never seems better than when a storm is raging. Now’s the time to eat your fill of hearty stews and indulge in some comfort food. In an ode to winter, you could add some of the darker, moody colors into your life. If nothing else, the joy of pulling on a cozy sweater can offset the pain of getting out of bed on a cold morning.
  5. Keep it tidy: For better or for worse, you end up spending a lot more time inside in the winter. A messy environment will only act as a mood downer, especially since you can’t escape the clutter for a few hours as easily. Keeping your spaces tidy will not only make you feel more productive (another good counter to the winter “blahs”), but it will also make being inside more pleasant. Adding some fresh flowers to your decor is a great way to bring the outdoors in and make things feel a little more spruced up.

Candid Statement, Lately

Candid Statement, LatelyJanuary was a whirlwind month for us here at Candid Statement. Caroline celebrated a birthday and started her job. Sara is settling into her move, volunteering part time at a small non-profit, and figuring out what her next step post-undergrad is. We’re excited for 2016 and to continue figuring out this whole adult thing. Here’s some snapshots from what we’ve been up to lately. nye.jpgIMG_8097drink collageIMG_8092 (1)Candid Statement, LatelyCandid Statement, Lately

Scenes from the Road

Posted by Sara

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A few weeks ago, my mother and I embarked on a cross-country road-trip to move me back West after my graduation from William and Mary. Driving across the country was no small undertaking but it gave me a chance to reflect upon my college experience and mentally prepare for the first steps into adult life before the craziness of the holidays. Condensing four years worth of stuff into the back of my car was not easy- in fact, the car was packed in such a way that my mother and I couldn’t even adjust our seats. The hours on I-40 were dreary, to say the least, but we hit a few spots along the way that made the trip worth it. We spent a few hours on the Blue Ridge Parkway, stopped at the Biltmore Estate (beautifully decorated for Christmas) in Asheville, North Carolina, and had some amazing barbecue in Amarillo, Texas. My favorite stop, however, was at Monroe’s in Albuquerque, New Mexico where I had some of the best enchiladas of my life. I’ve included pictures of some of my favorites sites from the road.

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What We’re Watching: Christmas Edition

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With exams finally over and Christmas fast approaching, we’ve been taking some much-needed R&R. In our opinion, the best way to relax this time of year is with some cheesy holiday movies and a mug of spiked hot chocolate in hand. Here are our 4 favorite holiday films:

  1. Love Actually
  2. Elf
  3. The Santa Clause
  4. The Muppet Christmas Carol

We’d love to know- what are some of your favorite holiday movies?

Real Talk: Study Tips

Posted by Sara

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After 4.5 years in college (and a whopping 18 years in school overall), it’s safe to say that we’ve taken our fair share of tests and written many papers over the years. I’ve always enjoyed school, but spending the day inside studying is rarely my first pick. Here are my favorite study tips I’ve learned over the years.

  1. Treat yo’ self: It is always easier to get a long day of studying in if you have something to look forward to. Recently, I’ve started treating myself to a latte (rather than my standard drip coffee) if I  study at Starbucks on Friday morning instead of sleeping in. This doesn’t mean give into your every whim and live on sugary snacks because you have a test coming up, however. In my opinion, ‘treat yo’ self’ also means allowing yourself short study breaks- maybe going on a walk to get some fresh air or taking the time to prepare a healthy meal.
  2. Be Organized: It’s embarrassing to admit but I have messed up the dates of finals more times than I care to admit. When I take the time towards the end of the semester to review when everything is due, this problem becomes mostly non-existent. It’s also good to know the basic requirements of a test or assignment (what it’s supposed to cover, how long it’s supposed to be, etc.) Knowing when you need to have everything turned in will help you plan out your finals week, so you know when you need to study and when you can take the time for some end of the semester fun.
  3. Know What Works for You: Chances are the study system that works best for each person is far from their ideal way of studying. For me, this means not allowing myself to study in my bed (where I’ll inevitably end up taking a 2 hour nap- just ask my roommates!) and minimizing distractions. As much as I would love to study while I watch a movie, it’s never going to work for me. Studying always goes much more smoothly and quickly when  you buckle down and work in the environment that’s going to work best for you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving from Candid Statement! We’ve taken a small hiatus this past week to spend time with family and friends over the Thanksgiving Break and finish up some end of the semester assignments for school. We hope you have a wonderful day filled with good food and quality time with loved ones! This year, we’re especially thankful for all the support from our family and friends as we finish our last semester at William and Mary and in our first months of blogging.

Candid Statement, Lately

Candid Statement, Lately

Between Homecoming and Halloween, we’ve had a crazy few weeks. Suddenly it’s November, and Caroline is stuck in the library studying for her last CPA exam, while Sara is busy making plans for next year. It can be easy to overlook all the candidly beautiful things that are happening around us, so here’s some snapshots from our lives lately.

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