Favorite Candles!

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Happy happy happy Wednesday!

I didn’t think I was going to get this post up either because I spent all of yesterday frustratingly working on my project, then scrapping it again, but I wanted to make sure that I kept up with the blog.

This post is kind of in partner with my last post (somehow), How To Be Productive at Home. I mentioned that I always have a few candles on my desk and so I wanted to talk about those candles!

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MY FAVORITE CANDLES

HONEY & THE MOON

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Yikes at my dirty windowsill!

Aesthetically-pleasing candles? Yes please!

Honey & The Moon by TokyoMilk is a smaller candle that I was actually given by my way-cool cousin. She found it at a nursery, I’m pretty sure, and unfortunately as you can probably tell, it melted in the car and formed weird! According to the packaging, the candle smells like sweet honey, sugared violet, jasmine and sandalwood, but quite honestly I think it smells like honey and milk! It’s a light, fresh scent and the packaging is so cute with the little bee on top. I honestly haven’t even lit this one yet. Not sure what I’m waiting for!

LEMON DROPS

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This candle’s gotta be one of my all-time favorites. My friend gifted it to me a couple of years ago for my birthday, which was perfect since I have a summer birthday! The lemon scent is sweet and strong, which I love, but could easily get a bit tiresome. I’ve lit this one quite a lot if you couldn’t tell! The candle is packaged in a blue, white, yellow and gray argyle jar with a sunshine-yellow lid. I especially like the little knob on top since it makes for easy opening! This candle was purchased at Target, which I honestly can’t believe, since most candles at Target give me such a headache!

PERSIMMON CLOVE

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Yikes again at my windowsill…

If I was going to have to pick only one candle to write this post on, I would pick Persimmon Clove. First of all, can we talk about the packaging? This candle comes in a jar with a pattern of copper, white, pink and the occasional black. The scent is a strong, almost Christmas-y scent to me (hence why I haven’t lit it just yet). I received this candle for Christmas last year and it is from Anthropologie, making it my first Anthropologie candle! I’d been meaning to buy one for so long, and I’m so happy to have gotten it. This is my favorite candle because it’s just so so stinkin’ cute!


Do you keep candles on hand too? What are your go-to scents and brands?

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How To Be Productive at Home

Hey y’all, happy Monday!

I cannot believe that April is almost over. Honestly, I’m pretty sure that March just started, and we’re almost into May! Time sure flies.

almost didn’t get this post up today because I spent a lot of the day working on my new project! Of course, I had to scrap most of what I did today, but still. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

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If you’re like me and you do a lot of work from home, you may find it hard to actually be productive when there are so many distractions. I definitely do! I lined out some of my favorite ways to actually get stuff done, even if you’re wearing pajamas!


ORGANIZE YOUR WORKSPACE

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Yes, you can see me in the reflection.

It’s helpful not to have too many items on your desk at once. I always have my laptop, a couple of candles, and my newest issue of Vogue. However, you may want to keep the magazines put away if you lack the self-control! I find it hard to work when there’s too much clutter, since it’s almost distracting from the work you should be doing.

SAY GOODBYE TO THE ELECTRONICS

Sans the laptop of course, if you’re doing computer work. I used to shut my phone off and hide it at the bottom of the drawer so that it wouldn’t be easy to sneak a check. Now, I’ve pretty much trained myself to leave it alone whilst I finish any assignments!

TAKE BREAKS, BUT NOT THAT MANY BREAKS

When you do work from home, you don’t have a scheduled lunch break. It’s important to get up and stretch your legs every now and then, maybe get a drink of water, but you want to make sure that you aren’t constantly getting up! Set a timer for 30 minutes to an hour and take a break at the end. Until then, keep grinding.

STAY OFF OF SOCIAL MEDIA

This one is super hard, especially when you have access to the internet! Find your will-power and stay working, rather than browsing Facebook or taking Buzzfeed Quizzes (we all do it).


Short and sweet, but still helpful! Do you work from home? What are your favorite tips to actually being productive?

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IPOS: Girls Who Hate Girls

Hey y’all, and happy Wednesday! I hope that your weeks have been going well so far!

I’ve been trying to write this post for days now, but every time I come near the end, I scrap it. It’s not coming out the way I want it to!

Anyways, today I have another I Ponder of Something.

Side note: I’m taking off the Great because not everything will be, well, great.

 


GIRLS WHO HATE GIRLS

Girl competition. If you’ve ever gone to school or worked with other girls, you know exactly what I’m talking about. I’m still thinking of the right word to describe it; it’s not just competition, but rather competition mixed with jealousy, mixed with the undesirable need to constantly tear each other down. But for now, competition will have to suffice.

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It’s everywhere. Girls being nice to each others’ faces and then bashing each other behind their backs, girls shaming their friends, girls spreading rumors about people they’ve never met before. I think it’s time to talk about it. I’ve had this done to me before, and I’m sure if you’re a girl, you’ve had it done to you as well. Hell, I’ve done my fair share of it to others. We all have. It’s what we do.

I found myself saying to my mom the other day, “Man, I hate other girls,” and I realized just how stupid I sounded. Of course, I was angry because some girls had been causing bad drama for some of my close friends. But regardless, I was turning into them.

I never quite understand why girls are proud to be not like other girls or whatever they say. It’s because girls have been branded as lying, scheming, ruthless people who are walking balls of drama and not much else. Despicable, right?

There’s definitely a reason for this, that’s undeniable. And it’s actually quite simple. Internalized misogyny. 

That’s right. Society is misogynistic. I shouldn’t have to be the first person to tell you that. I’m sure you already know. But because of this, society has taught us that one girl’s decision is definitely our business and desperately wants to hear our opinion. We are taught to hate on other girls, because society hates us, too.

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I don’t get it, really. As young women, everyone is already against us. Why do we insist on turning against each other as well? Every single time that you talk about how slutty a girl is, how ugly her skirt is, or how weird she looks, you are contributing to a misogynistic society. It’s none of your business what she does. Why do you insist on it being?

I just think that as girls we really need to stick up for each other. It saddens me to see us just constantly tearing each other down instead.


That’s pretty much what I wanted to say. Honestly, I’ll probably think of more later, but I wanted to get this out now. There’s another IPOS that kind of goes with this that I’ll post soon.

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Monday Mantras + Upcoming Week

Hey, y’all!

I hope that everyone had a lovely Easter weekend. I had a pretty chill one – on Saturday, my aunts and cousin and I went to see Cage the Elephant, which was insane. They’re a really great band and you should definitely check them out if you haven’t heard them before!

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Unfortunately I don’t have a picture from inside the show, since it was no phones allowed. They actually put our phones in these bags that were magnet-ed shut. The band was recording these live performances for an upcoming album so I think they didn’t want the interference. Still way cool.

Hanging out with my cousin and her family is always a blast, and we celebrated Easter with their many chickens. I’m pretty sure they have five, and one called Juniper hangs out inside, too.

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I finally caught Juniper for the first time, and I was totally freaking out, but I tried to look cool for a pic. You tell me, how uncomfortable do I look?

On Sunday morning, we all went to brunch at my grandmother’s house. It’s a tradition really, but this was the smallest Easter gathering yet! A lot of family members were out of town or had other obligations, so it was really small. I didn’t take any pictures of my outfit because I was totally tired from the concert and didn’t really take the time to pick something cute to wear. But here’s me in front of some pretty pink flowers in my cousin’s backyard.

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Back to the point! This post has so far been totally misleading, but I promise I am going to share some Monday mantras! First off though, I’d like to talk about the upcoming few weeks! I have big plans for the “Natalie Vinh Brand” (can you imagine, haha), so I may be a bit absent on the blog! I’ll try my best to post still, and hopefully I’ll have some good pictures. My cousin is coming to stay with us this week, so I’ll probably post some updates of our adventures! I’m also thinking of doing another I Ponder of Something Great. Either this week or next!

Also, if you haven’t subscribed to my newsletter yet, I highly suggest you do! You’ll be the first to know when my newest project launches! Subscribe here!


MONDAY MANTRAS

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Short but sweet mantras! I’m saving some of the ones that I was going to share today for a future IPOSG. It’ll come out soon, once I figure out what exactly I want to say! Thanks for reading, and if you made it this far, leave a comment telling me how your Easter went and which mantra is your favorite!

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Disclaimer: All images are taken from Pinterest. 

Killer Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I make cookies at least once a week. They’re one of my favorite things to bake because there’s so many different variations, and they’re much easier to share and get rid of! This week I decided to make chocolate chip cookies, which I haven’t done in a while. My last bake was birthday cake cookies!

The recipe was pretty straightforward but I did modify a few things. I doubled the recipe, and I also omitted the salt because I used salted butter instead of unsalted butter. I also didn’t really measure the chocolate chips, since I like a lot of chocolate chips and especially with big cookies you need more.

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Brown and white sugars
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Added melted butter. I microwaved two and a half sticks for around 2 minutes.
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Only the butter and sugars mixed together.
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After the eggs. It was kind of like a caramel sauce and setting quickly.
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Adding the flour and baking powder (and salt, but I didn’t use the salt).

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Drop cookies by 1/4 cup. Large cookies.

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I actually didn’t realize that these were going to be so big until I read “drop cookies by 1/4 cup”. I thought it was a typo, honestly, and I was really afraid that they wouldn’t be baked all the way through, but they came out perfectly chewy and completely cooked. They are super delicious and a great treat to share!

The Recipe (before doubling):

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cups melted unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 cups chocolate chips

To Bake:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F or 165C.
  2. Sift (I whisked) together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, brown sugar and white sugar. Beat in the eggs and vanilla until combined. Mix in the dry ingredients until well blended. Stir in the chocolate chips with a wooden spoon until just combined, then drop cookies by 1/4 cup onto a greased baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until golden brown (I did all my batches for 16 and they were perfect).
  5. Cool for a few minutes on baking sheet and then transfer to a cooling rack.

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SUBSCRIBE TO MY NEWSLETTER

Natalie Vinh Newsletter

Happy Wednesday, y’all!

Okay, technically it is still Tuesday here in California. But it’s late, and time zones, so it’s basically Wednesday.

I started this blog because I thought I would have fun messing around with web design, and that’s proven to be totally right. I’ve recently taken an interest in coding, and it’s kind of addictive. Unfortunately, I’m not self-hosted, so there’s a limit to how much of my own coding I can actually do. I do hope to go self-hosted someday, but with great self-hosting comes great responsibility, and to be fair, great price.

I’ve spent most of the day messing around with my blog, as you may see. I made some changes on the colors and theme a little bit, and one of those changes that I’m extra proud of is my newsletter!

I designed a great newsletter for y’all and I’m so so so excited to share it! Instead of having a subscribe pop-up, I decided to opt for a link instead, since I’d rather y’all signed up because you wanted to and not because it was being shoved in your face. It would mean a lot to me if you did sign up, I’m so excited to have it!

Subscribing is so easy! Take a look at the sidebar, and at the very top. See that subscribe button? Looks a little like this.

You can actually click that on the sidebar, and the one right here, and it will take you to sign up for my newsletter! All you have to do is enter your first name, email, and birthday. You’ll receive a confirmation email, but only to make sure that you aren’t a robot or a deactivated address! Just confirm, and you’re good to go. I’m going to answer some questions that you may have about my new newsletter.

Why do you need my birthday? Maybe I want to send you a special birthday email. Entering your birthday is totally optional, but you might just want to see what you’ll receive on your special day!

How is this different from your blog updates? My newsletter isn’t going to be like my blog emails. Instead, it’s special content that you won’t get just on the blog. That’s why you should subscribe!

Will you spam me with emails? Absolutely not. My newsletter is powered by MailChimp, but I am 100% manually in charge of everything that goes out minus the confirmation email. So you will only be receiving emails from me if I myself press send. No spam here!

Can I unsubscribe at any time? Yes, you can! There will always be an unsubscribe button as well as a mange preferences button at the bottom of every newsletter.


I hope that you all have a lovely Wednesday, and leave me a comment if you subscribe to my newsletter! I really hope you do!

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Benefit Cosmetics Cheek Parade

Happy Tuesday, y’all.

If you’re actually on my website, you’ll notice that my blog looks a little different. I did some renovations today. If you’re not on my actual website, go check it out, here. You can see what I’ve changed.

A couple weeks ago I ordered some stuff from the Benefit Cosmetics webpage. I was looking around because I had wanted to get the Hoola bronzer anyways, and I noticed they had a limited edition pallet of (most) of all of their blushes/bronzers. Called the Cheek Parade, this pallet includes five blushes and bronzers – Hoola Matte Bronzer, Hoola Lite Matte Bronzer, GALifornia Golden Pink Blush, Dandelion Brightening Finishing Powder, and Rockateur Rose Gold Cheek Powder.

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I was pretty excited when I saw this because I wanted to get the new GALifornia blush anyways along with some other things, but it was going to be a pretty pricey purchase. This pallet runs for $58.00 without shipping and tax, and I know that sounds a little expensive, especially if you’re used to buying drugstore makeup, but the deal is pretty good. All of the blushes/bronzers are full size, and I didn’t have to pay shipping, I think it was because I exceeded a certain amount or something.

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All the shades are insanely gorgeous. The Hoola is perfect for my skin tone, since I’m not too dark or too light. The Hoola lite is definitely too light for me, but I can see how it could fit on other skin tones. Dandelion and Rockateur are both beautiful pinks; Dandelion is more matte, and Rockateur is more shimmery. GALifornia is by far my favorite out of the pallet; the shimmery gold and pink make such a perfect summer blush. I’m in love.

This pallet is limited edition, so I would suggest purchasing it soon if it looks like something you’d like. The shades are all super pretty, and it’s basically five for the price of two. Also, I got a deluxe eyebrow pencil sample for free. I don’t really use pencil for my eyebrows, but it’s a pretty big sample. I’m impressed.


Are y’all Benefit users? What are your favorite products?

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