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This Week's Top 10

1. Happy Friday!

2. Mary Kate Olsen and I both have been sporting this hairstyle quite often lately... It's my new favorite.

5. Stop what you're doing and look at this office.

6. This furry clutch is amazing.

8. I wish I would've gone apple picking this season... Julia looked so cute!

9. So happy I ordered this book.

10. Happy Halloween! What are your plans? Tonight I'm dressing up for the Halloween Dance and tomorrow I'll be at the Badger game over at UW-Madison!


The End of the Season

This year, my field hockey season was on another level. I don't think I've ever loved a group of 20 girls more in my life and I don't think anything could have possibly made this season more incredible than it was. Each year, field hockey has been fun, but I've always felt like our team was split into little friend groups or practice would be dreadful because I'd rather be sitting at home. This year could not have been more different. Every single one of us is the best of friends and each one of us loves every other girl on the team with our whole heart. I loved going to practice every single day, rain or shine, because the girls on my team made my day and my season so incredibly worthwhile and wonderful.

Tonight at the field hockey banquet I'm so sad to admit that my last field hockey season is over. So much has changed from JV 3 freshman year to Varsity this year and the memories from field hockey seasons past are some of my most cherished. I know this season, losing our semi-final game 1-0 in overtime was devastating, but the fact that we won during the regular season in a game against the ultimate state champs this year is a great feeling. The memories I have made and the 20 girls I can now call my best friends are not something that will disappear even if the season is over.

Our game ended last Thursday when the ball was flicked above our goalie's glove and into the top left corner of the net. The tears we all shed and the feelings we all felt were overwhelming. But we were not just crying because we had lost. We were crying because it meant our season was over one game too soon. I love the feeling of knowing that I had loved something so much that I just never wanted it to end.

I encourage each one of you to find something you love, something you think you could even remotely be passionate about, and go out there and take it. Life is nothing if you don't live it, and it's so important to love it along the way. I could not have asked for a more amazing way to start my senior year and I am so blessed for the fabulous three months that came from the best 20 girls on my team.


My Senior Pictures (Help Me Choose!)

I shared a little sneak peak of my senior pictures a few months ago here, and then a few other shots from the shoot here, but today I'm revealing a few more in hopes that you'll all help me decide which photo to put in the yearbook!










I am so torn! I have no idea what to choose... I could barely narrow it down to these nine! Please comment your favorite below!


Wearing White in Fall

Scarf // Jacket // Sweater // Pants (similar) // Booties (similar here and here)

If you know me at all, you're well aware that neutrals are my go-to. My closet is all blues, grey, whites, and I wouldn't have it any other way. So, when I pair my coziest scarf with stripes, denim, and my favorite fall pants, I have on quite a "Fran" outfit, and I have to say it's one of my favorites. Who says you can't wear white after Labor Day? This look is perfect fall given the edgy zipper details on the pants and pairing them with a class fall piece, the jean jacket.


The Truth about Hosting an Exchange Student

After hosting a French student for two years in a row, I am able to confidently draw a few conclusions on my experiences. It's safe to say that hosting last year felt a lot more like an experience, and this year felt more like a chore. Maybe it's the fact that last year I hosted a girl, and I was traveling back in the spring to stay with her family, and this year it was just a one-way exchange and I hosted a boy, but I think a lot of it boils down to the difference in the students.

Hosting an exchange student that is engaged in your culture and lifestyle is a good thing. Last year, I often found myself exhausted and craving any alone time that I could get when my French student was here. She was constantly eager to go out and do something, and she was curious about every aspect of my "American" life. I think I took this for granted, because my experience this year could not have been more opposite. I hosted a boy this year, and I think his outlook on the opportunity went a lot further than the expected awkwardness of our cultural or gender difference. He simply put forth no effort in conversation and showed little manners even when it was just a simple "please" or "thank you" that seemed appropriate for the situation.

The thing about a foreign exchange is that it's supposed to be exhausting. You're supposed to feel like it's taking a lot out of you because sharing your culture with another person requires a lot more energy than living your everyday life for yourself. It's almost like you have to live everything out with the double the energy to make sure your correspondent is enjoying themselves. And this is the way it should be. This year, my exchange student would never talk to me, and I often was too frustrated by his lack of enthusiasm to try to start up a conversation myself, because he would reply with short, uninterested responses. Whenever we were at home, he would always be in his room, and whenever we were in the car, he would never talk. I tried to reach out to him, but he didn't reciprocate. And that's okay. Everyone is different. Maybe he just wasn't very open, or he felt uncomfortable. Maybe, honestly, he just didn't like me! 

Hosting an exchange student is a different experience for everyone and it's important to remember that it's an exchange because it's dependent on both of you. If a student doesn't show any enthusiasm, that doesn't make you a bad host, that's on them! But if they are excited and curious about your life, it's important to remember how incredible of an opportunity this is for them and to try to give them the fullest experience as possible. They leave soon enough and you don't ever have to see them again if you don't want to, so it's important to make the most of an exchange while it lasts.


This Week's Top 10

1. The french students left yesterday... It was such a fun two weeks but so exhausting.

4. Love this outfit on Kelly.

5. I need this skirt for the holidays.

6. I just ordered this scarf and it's easily the coziest thing I own.

7. Can I just redecorate my entire house with the new Kate Spade home collection, please?

8. Did you see this recipe I posted yesterday? It's so easy... Perfect to make this weekend!

10. Yesterday we lost our state play-off game for field hockey. I'm so sad that the season is over (and we were so close to getting to state!), but I am grateful to have had my last season be the best season.


Recipe: Easy Pumpkin Energy Bites

I'm obsessed with pumpkin. And granola. I eat granola for breakfast almost everyday and still snack on it usually at least once at some other point of my day. I can't get enough! And, of course, leave it to the basic white girl in me to crave pumpkin every single minute of fall...

So, I found on trusty Pinterest a great recipe for healthy pumpkin energy bites! Essentially, these are tasty (and so easy to make) little balls of oatmeal pumpkin goodness that is healthy for you and convenient to pop in your mouth when you just need a little pick me up.

What You'll Need...
1 cup oats
1/3 cup pumpkin
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/3 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (or cloves, or pumpkin pie spice)
Chocolate Chips (to taste)

1. Mix together all of the ingredients! No order necessary. 
2. Roll into balls
3. Pop in the freezer or refrigerator to store

I used dark chocolate chips to make my bites as healthy as I possibly could (except I added a ton of them so I don't know what my thought process was behind that...), and I decided to go with a 1/3 cup of pumpkin instead of 1/4 like the recipe originally called for, which worked out well and added a little extra pumpkin flavor!

These are ideal for a late night snack without the guilt, a pre-practice snack, or even on-the-go breakfast! I keep mine in the fridge so they stay with their consistency, and I made them pretty tiny so I can eat a few and feel satisfied. 

Let me know if you try this recipe or have ever made anything similar!

Desktop Wallpapers + Laptop Organization

Fun fact... I'm really OCD about my desktop. I try to keep my laptop as organized as possible because between blog photos and documents, school papers and projects, endless college application essays, scholarship essays, and random other thing that I use my laptop for, it's just not practical for me to save files and photos wherever I want and expect to find them later. A big part of how I keep my laptop organized starts right at the desktop, and I love the method I have set up.

I only keep a few applications in my dock at the bottom of my screen because I don't see the point in having extra apps down there that I'm not going to use. The apps I use are available when I need them and things I don't use, or use less often, are just a few clicks away in Finder. 

On my actual desktop, I have a photos folder and a school folder, which each include a lot of the things I'm often working with, so it's nice to have them accessible. Inside my photos folder is a folder for desktop wallpapers and another containing the graphics I use on my blog. In my school folder I have another folder that contains college materials, like my essays and scholarship applications. I also color code all of my documents and projects by class.

Like I said, I have a whole folder dedicated to wallpapers. I keep a few desktop wallpapers always in rotation because I like have crisp and clean, but still aesthetically pleasing wallpapers on my desktop, and I know I'll get sick of my current photo within a few weeks. I always keep two desktops on my computer that I swipe back and forth between because it's easier when I'm working just to swipe to the right to look in my Spotify than to click over to it on my dock and have to minimize tabs.

My favorite place to find desktop wallpapers is Design Love Fest, but I find them on Pinterest and other random blogs too! Here are some of my saved backgrounds (and you can find the backgrounds above right here: blue // blush)

 Do you have any laptop organization tips?

3 Capes I Love Right Now

I think capes are one of the coolest things you can add to an outfit. Equally as warm as any other wool coat, capes are a practical choice for the chilly weather that's been lurking around as of late. However, capes instantly add a chic feel to any outfit that your basic coat cannot. A cape is probably the laziest (and most comfortable) way to look fabulous and put together without putting in any effort at all. Shop three of my current faves below...


This Week's Top 10

1. I couldn't help myself, and I may or may not have ordered this jacket.

2. Splurge-worthy: this buffalo check cashmere scarf (or a similar option for under $50!)

5. I loved this outfit on Carly, especially those ankle-zip jeans.

9. Check out my current playlist here.

10. It's the last weekend with the French students!


Current Playlist

For me, music always comes in bursts. I play the same 6-7 songs on repeat for a week or two until I can't stand them anymore, and then repeat the cycle all over again. My current playlist...

It's kind of a funky mix of songs... A little bit of pump-up, a little rap, a few slower ones, and some random jams in the mix too! However, Mumford and Sons entire "Wilder Mind" album is incredible and I've been especially queueing a ton of those songs.

What are you listening to? I want to hear your favorite jams!!