An Open Letter to Every Woman who Said, "Me Too" - Happy Hour #15

An Open Letter to Every Woman who Said, "Me Too" - Happy Hour #15

This post may include content that could be triggering to victims of sexual harassment and assault.

When I sat down to write today’s Happy Hour post, I had no idea what I was going to write about. I thought about doing another 5 things I’m loving type of post but as I started to type, something didn’t feel right. There has been a lot on my mind this week, specifically the “Me Too” campaign that happened on social media. If you’ve been living under a rock this week then you may have no idea what I’m talking about but on Sunday and Monday, women took to social media and posted a simple phrase, “Me too.”

The phrase was a banding together of women to show how many of us face sexual harassment and assault in our lives and often on a daily basis. Some women shared their stories, and others just shared the phrase. I was one of those people who just shared the phrase. I chose not to go into detail on Facebook about my experience because if we’re being honest, I could start listing the number of times I’ve been sexually harassed and it would take pages and pages to complete.

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What to Expect from your first Wedding Dress Appointment - Wedding Dress Shopping 101

What to Expect from your first Wedding Dress Appointment - Wedding Dress Shopping 101

Another Wednesday, another wedding post. Are you guys sick of these yet? Because I know I'm not! Seriously I feel like I could write a book on this stuff. Today's post is the third in the Wedding Dress Shopping 101 series that's running all of October. I've already spilled the tea about the 5 Mistakes I Made while Wedding Dress Shopping and shared some great times on What to Do BEFORE You Go Wedding Dress Shopping for the first time.

So today I'm going to draw from my own experience and walk you through your first wedding dress appointment! Wedding dress shopping can be one of the most stressful and nerve wracking parts of the wedding planning process so hopefully sharing my experiences from wedding dress shopping can help y'all to be more prepared for what to expect from your first wedding dress appointment!

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Everything You Need to Know about Attending an Army West Point Football Game

Everything You Need to Know about Attending an Army West Point Football Game

I went to a big football school, so I thought I knew a thing or two about surviving a college football game day. I could not have been more wrong, however, when it comes to Army football games. Honestly if I hadn’t already worked at West Point by the time I attended my first Army West Point home game, I would have been completely lost because everything is SO different. To make matters worse, cadets are usually busy before the games so anyone you would have to show you around is MIA. Luckily for you, you’ve got me.

We are rounding out my third football season at West Point so I know a thing or two about getting around an Army football game. I recently got A TON of questions about the most recent home football game from other girlfriends so I figured I would use my platform to actually spread what I know and help some people out down the road! Let’s get right into everything you need to know about attending an Army West Point football game!

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Celebrating my Mother's Wedding, Weekend Recap - Happy Hour #14

Celebrating my Mother's Wedding, Weekend Recap - Happy Hour #14

Hello guys! I hope you enjoyed your weekend AND week. Friday the 13th is always a weird day for me and today is no exception. I completely forgot to write this post! That and a few other things have me a little off my game today but I figured this weekend recap would be a fun way to share some exciting memories with y'all! This is the second weekend recap I've done (you can check out the first one here) and I love doing them. I also like reading weekend recaps from other bloggers as well. If you want to see more frequent weekend recaps let me know! And, if you have a weekend recap from last weekend on your blog, leave a link so I can check it out!

I honestly had to pick and choose which photos to include in this post because last weekend was filled with SO many good memories. I had the honor (LOL) of being the Maid of Honor in my Mom's wedding!

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What to Do BEFORE You Go Wedding Dress Shopping: Wedding Dress 101

What to Do BEFORE You Go Wedding Dress Shopping: Wedding Dress 101

Wedding Dress Shopping is probably one of the most stressful moments of my life. I know, that sounds dramatic but when you think about everything that your wedding dress stands for, it can be a little anxiety inducing. Some girls dream of their wedding dress their entire lives so finding the perfect one when you actually start getting into your wedding planning process can be… a lot. Now, if you’re not the type to freak out over a piece of clothing you’re probably only going to wear once then this post might not be for you but I wanted to bring my fellow bride-to-be's out there a thorough wedding dress shopping 101 post to help you shop for your wedding dress with ease.

If you want to hear more about my actual wedding dress shopping experience and why I ended up buying two wedding dresses, you can read about it here! My wedding dress shopping horror story is not ideal so hopefully between sharing my story and some killer advice, you’ll find your dream dress in no time (without the mistakes!).

The first step in wedding dress shopping is to prepare and do research ahead of time. By research, I don’t mean watch as many episodes of Say Yes to the Dress as possible.

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September Instagram Roundup - Happy Hour #13

September Instagram Roundup - Happy Hour #13

I am off to Virginia for my mom's wedding today so I thought I would say TGIF and Hello October and keep this week's Happy Hour post short and sweet! So this week I'm going to try something a little different and do an Instagram Roundup for the month of September! I've been working really hard on my Instagram lately so shameless plug to make sure you're following me over there. I interact with a lot of people via Insta Stories so you never know what bonus content you're going to get. I also try to post my outfit for each day in the stories and have been itching to try out the new poll feature so give me a follow because there could be some exciting bonus content coming your way. Here are some of my favorite outfits feature on Instagram from the month of September!

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5 Mistakes I Made while Wedding Dress Shopping - Wedding Dress Shopping 101 Series

5 Mistakes I Made while Wedding Dress Shopping - Wedding Dress Shopping 101 Series

Alright you guys if you weren’t already stoked because of my weekly wedding planning posts then you better get real excited because all throughout October we’re going to be talking about one thing and one thing only: wedding dress shopping! My wedding dress shopping was less than ideal and that’s what inspired this entire series. Initially, I had just planned on doing one post but quickly realized that there is SO much to talk about with you guys. So naturally I took to Twitter and ran a poll (P.S. I love love love getting y’all’s input for things I’m working on so follow me over there and you can be in the know!). Anyways, you guys said you wanted a series so here it is!

Wedding Dress Shopping 101 is going to be a month long series that will happen each Wednesday throughout the month of October. If you’re new here, I got engaged in November of 2016 and have been doing a wedding post each week on this blog since June! You can find all of the other wedding related posts here, as well as the related posts section at the bottom of the post! Anyways, let’s get into spilling the tea on wedding dress shopping, shall we?

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5 Common Misconceptions People with Depression are Tired of Hearing

5 Common Misconceptions People with Depression are Tired of Hearing

What is up everyone? For today's post I wanted to follow up to my previous posts (here and here) about thriving with depression and address some common misconceptions about depression that I've encountered. There’s no argument that society as a whole tends to have a backwards view of mental illness. What do I mean by that? Well, we tend to think mental illness isn’t as serious as other illnesses, stigmatize it, etc. Information is misconstrued when it comes to illnesses like depression and anxiety (or just not researched at all) and that can be really detrimental to the actual mental health of someone who battles depression on a daily basis. Basically, it just plain old sucks when someone (*cough* society *cough*) minimizes or nullifies your feelings.

Specifically, I want to talk about five really common misconceptions about depression. If you have depression, chances are you’ve faced one of these five misconceptions at least once. But I don’t just want to focus on the misconceptions. I want to start a conversation about what we can do to overcome and change them. Here we go:

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How to DIY Your Own Pet Emergency Kit with Nature's Recipe

How to DIY Your Own Pet Emergency Kit with Nature's Recipe

This post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All products are ones I use and love. All opinions are mine alone. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Darrian Michelle possible #RecipesWithPurpose #CollectiveBias

Y’all should know by now that I am one proud dog mom and I take care of Gatsby and Hemingway as if they were actual people. That’s why I got my ish together and created a “go bag” for them in case of an emergency before I even made one for myself! If we’re being honest, I still don’t have one for myself… oops. Anyways, with all the natural disasters happening in the world right now, I figured it was a great opportunity to elaborate on the pet portion of my DIY Emergency Kit post from a few weeks ago.

Now if you’re a dog mom but you’re thinking “I don’t live anywhere near a hurricane” then hold up just a minute. Emergency situations happen to everyone and can happen at anytime so wouldn’t you rather be prepared for yourself and your precious fur babies in case anything were to happen? I know it’s scary to think about but you honestly never know when an emergency will strike, whether it’s a snowstorm, house fire, or emergency trip back to your home state. This tutorial will have you DIYing your own emergency kit for your pets in no time! Honestly, the hardest part about this DIY is getting everything you need so there’s really no excuse. Easy peasy is what we’re all about here so let’s get right into creating your own pet emergency kit!

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4 Things You Absolutely Must Do BEFORE Buying from an Online Boutique

4 Things You Absolutely Must Do BEFORE Buying from an Online Boutique

Online boutiques are all the rage nowadays. It seems like everywhere you look someone is starting up a new online boutique. While online boutiques offer a great selection of unique and curated items, sometimes shopping online boutiques can be a stressful experience. I know more than once I’ve been fed up with my experience shopping at particular online stores.

Dealing with different brands, zero reviews, and a lack of diversity in model shape can lead you to have absolutely no idea what you’re going to end up getting once you’ve ordered. So today I figured I would take some of my “lessons learned” from shopping online boutiques and share them with you! After all, that’s what friends are for, right? I know you’re all dying for these tips so let’s get right into what you absolutely must do BEFORE buying from an online boutique.

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My First Q & A + Starbucks Gift Card Giveaway! - Happy Hour #11

My First Q & A + Starbucks Gift Card Giveaway! - Happy Hour #11

I wanted to shake things up a bit this week so I hopped on social media and decided to do a rather impromptu Q & A! I love reading (and watching) Q & A's so I figured it was damn near about time I did one on the blog. If you missed your chance to ask me a question make sure you're following me on Instagram and Twitter so you don't miss your chance next time around!

Did I mention one of these amazing ladies is going to win a $15 Starbucks gift card? That's a lot of PSL. Now, on to the questions! 

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The Pros and Cons of Having a Long Engagement

The Pros and Cons of Having a Long Engagement

It took me forever to figure out what to write for this week’s post. At first, I started a wedding dress shopping post which became so long that I’ve had to break it into a series coming in October (get hyped!). Everything I started writing after that kind of seemed to flop. I’ve been writing about wedding’s on the blog since it launched back in June so coming up with fresh ideas can be a hassle. There’s a whole section below where you can find my most popular Wedding Planning posts if you’re interested! Anyways, I took to some of my favorite blogs for inspiration. Shout out to my girl Rachel at The Confused Millennial for inspiring this post with her very own reasons to have a long engagement.

 

Before Justin and I even got engaged, I knew that our engagement would be long. At West Point, cadets aren’t allowed to get married while they’re there so we would inevitably be waiting for graduation in order to get married. I think I had always pictured myself having a long engagement, around a year long, anyways but we will actually have been engaged over a year and a half by the time our wedding rolls around!

 

 

When you get engaged to someone in the military, people are very quick to judge. We had people who didn’t know anything about West Point asking if we were getting married in 6 months (shout out to the women before me who have done that, y’all are champs). What I didn’t expect, are the people who judged us for waiting so long to actually have our wedding. Granted, these people aren’t familiar with how West Point works, but still… why is it such a big deal to have a quick engagement? Anyways, I came up with a list of the pros and cons of having a long engagement to share with y’all today!

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The 5 Best True Crime Podcasts to Listen to Right Now

The 5 Best True Crime Podcasts to Listen to Right Now

If you didn’t already know, I’m a huge fan of podcasts. Chances are, if you’re riding in my car we’re probably listening to a podcast. I got fed up with my local radio station last year and haven’t looked back since! Commuting to and from work 5 days a week means I’m constantly looking for new podcasts to listen to.  Since we already talked about Wedding Planning podcasts, I figured now would be a great time to introduce you to my other true love: true crime.

I’m not sure what it is but I have always been obsessed with true crime. I used to spend hours on end watching Investigation Discovery. Since I don’t have cable anymore (and I’ve pretty much watched everything there is on Netflix and Hulu) true crime podcasts have become a staple in my commute to and from work. If you’re a fan of true crime then you’re in luck because today I’m sharing the five best true crime podcasts to listen to right now!

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It's Time to Get a DIY Emergency Preparedness Kit - Happy Hour #10

It's Time to Get a DIY Emergency Preparedness Kit - Happy Hour #10

As some of you may or may not know, I am a part-time writer over at Literally, Darling. I get to write bomb ass articles with tons of other bomb ass ladies who also write some pretty mean articles. Anyways, I figured that every once and a while I would share one of the posts I've written for LD over here and that's what today's Happy Hour is going to be! If you've never checked out Literally, Darling before definitely do me a favor and head on over there and check it out. You won't regret it.

This week I want to take a moment to talk about something important: emergency preparedness. We all like to believe that these natural disaster type situations are never going to happen to us but that's just the thing, they happen to people like us each and every day. I know I would way rather be prepared ahead of time than having to rush out to get ready if and when that situation comes. This article, originally posted on Literally, Darling, is all about how to create your very own DIY Emergency Preparedness Kit.

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9 Steps I Took to Grow My Instagram that Actually Worked

9 Steps I Took to Grow My Instagram that Actually Worked

Instagram is a social media platform that has exploded in popularity in the last year or so but with algorithm changes and spam accounts, growing your Instagram account today is more challenging than ever. When I started this blog, I had just over 700 followers on Instagram. Now, my Instagram is (finally) holding steady at 1,020. In June, just before launching this blog, I set a goal for myself to hit 1,000 followers on Instagram by the end of the summer. Now, 1,000 followers may not seem like a lot and, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not, but I’ve been focused on growing organically and creating an engaged audience rather than just blowing up all of a sudden. You guys voted in my Twitter poll and chose growing your Instagram as today’s topic of choice so I’m going to be sharing with you exactly what I did to grow my Instagram!

Before we get into the steps I actually used to grow my Instagram, let me be completely upfront with you: it did not happen overnight. To make a long story short, I posted every single day for almost three months straight before I hit my goal. If you’re willing to hustle hard to grow your Instagram then you’ve come to the right place, my friends! Here’s what I actually did to grow my Instagram and make it work for me!

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R. Riveter Handbags, #BagsOnAMission Brand Ambassador - Happy Hour #9

R. Riveter Handbags, #BagsOnAMission Brand Ambassador - Happy Hour #9

When I first started dating Justin, I had a vague understanding of what my future would hold if we got serious, admittedly, most of which I had only seen through television. There are a lot of misconceptions out there about what it’s like to be a military spouse or significant other. I’ve heard all of the horror stories about how terrible military spouses and significant others are to each other (I mean, have you watched Army Wives?), how difficult it is to find employment as a military spouse, stereotypes about how all I’ll end up doing is having kids, etc. You name a military spouse stereotype, someone has told me that’s what my life is going to amount to as Justin and I begin this next chapter of our lives. Heck, even the West Point Girlfriend’s Group has a bad reputation for being filled with catty, obnoxious women.

I know, the world isn’t perfect and every group has it’s bad seeds, but if you look past the stereotypes, you’ll find something truly amazing. I have always struggled with feeling like I belong. If you’ve read my 5 Things I Regret NOT Doing in College, then you’ll know that one of those things is that I didn’t join a sorority. I’m not saying that being a military significant other is like being in a sorority but I do feel like I’ve finally found that sense of community I have always been looking for.

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Easy DIY Bridesmaid Boxes on a Budget

Easy DIY Bridesmaid Boxes on a Budget

Asking a friend or family member to be a part of your wedding day by being a bridesmaid is one of the most fun and rewarding parts of wedding planning, in my opinion. Last month, I shared some helpful questions all brides should ask themselves before asking the bridal party and today I thought it would be fun to actually talk about how to ask your bridesmaids!

The wedding industry has definitely exploded in recent years and aside from giving gifts to family, it can feel as though the bride is required to dote on her bridesmaids as well. Premade, designer bridesmaids boxes can cost upwards of $60 but today I’m going to be talking about how to create easy DIY bridesmaid boxes on a budget!

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My Favorite Places to Shop for Game Day Fashion

My Favorite Places to Shop for Game Day Fashion

Y’all, my favorite season of the year is finally here! Nope, not fall. I’m talking about football season! Like the good “southern” girl that I am, I was raised on football and they were always a cause for celebration in our home. Cue lots of food and family time in front of the television (or radio). My love for football only magnified when I went to my first WVU football game as a Freshman in college.

Now, when I was a freshman and honestly even a sophomore, game day fashion was not nearly as exciting as it is now. By the time I was in my senior year, the southern game day style for football games had exploded into something you really needed your own separate wardrobe for. Gone are the days of the simple college t-shirt and jeans. When I moved to New York, I was in for a bit of culture shock when it comes to football games. They definitely don’t do it the same as in the south. However, in true football school fashion, I still try my best to incorporate fun and fashionable game day styles into my post-grad wardrobe. While I may have traded blue and gold for black and gold, here are some of my favorite places to shop for game day fashion!

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USMA Class of 2018 Ring Weekend Recap - Happy Hour #8

USMA Class of 2018 Ring Weekend Recap - Happy Hour #8

Happy September everyone! I cannot believe how fast August went by! The last weekend in August was a huge deal for us filled with so many events. If you follow my Instagram then you’ve already seen a little bit about the things that went on but I figured since it’s Happy Hour that it would be fun to do a little weekend recap for you guys! This past weekend was the Ring Weekend for the USMA Class of 2018 (Justin's Class) so it was a super exciting weekend!

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