29 Years.

in , , by RoyallyPink, 4:00 AM

Today is my 29th birthday. In one year, I will be a 30-year-old woman and I don't know how to feel about that. I think the past two years have really been clouded with the thought of me leaving behind my twenties and entering this new phase in life. This new, mature, wise age never really felt within my reach.

For years, I waited for the milestone birthdays: 13 years old, 16, 18, 20, 21, and 25. 30 felt so far away, so beyond my grip that I kind of just never thought I'd get there. I don't think of myself as getting older because truthfully, I feel 18 in my head. I don't consider myself an adult because it just doesn't feel real... I still feel like me.

I live at home, I have a great career, I have my blog, I do a lot of writing, I see my friends, I stay home and watch TV most weekends. Things just haven't really panned out how I thought they would but truthfully, I didn't plan much throughout my twenties.



My early 20s were plagued by anxiety, depression, grief, heartbreak. I had an incredible senior year of college where I was young, wild, and free. Then, post-grad I still felt that way but it was different; my friends and I were mourning our old lives but somewhere along the way, that stopped and we stopped reminiscing. The memories faded and became foggy and I didn't feel like that person anymore.

I stopped drinking a lot, spent more time alone, got into a new relationship, and truly reconnected with my 'home' friends that I grew up with. Things changed a lot in the past decade and the image I had of my life at 29 years old is just not what I thought.

I do not have a boyfriend/fiance/husband. I do not have my own apartment. I have not published a book. I have not gotten rid of my anxiety and depression. I have not learned to stop shopping so much. Things are kind of the same they were at the beginning of the decade and it takes a lot for me to admit how disappointed I am in that. 

Last year's 28th birthday was a low point for me. It was the first one without my boyfriend in two years, we were in the middle of the pandemic, I was having suicidal thoughts, and I could barely keep it together. I was in the lowest point of my life, probably lower than when I graduated college. It was not a happy birthday and I was determined to fix things in the year ahead.

And you know what? I did. While I might not have all of those other things that I listed before a lot has changed in the past year:

  • I started going out on dates more, even if the guys I do like ghost me half the time
  • I got a better handle on my anxiety and depression by finding a new therapist and working with her to improve my moods
  • I've been less angry about the world and people around me
  • I go to the gym more and eat better on a daily basis
  • I meditate more and have developed better routines
  • I'm a better worker and got a promotion and raise this year, proving that I am an asset to my company
  • I am almost finished writing two books
  • I read more than ever -- hitting almost 80 books in 2021
  • I found a great book community on Instagram and Facebook
  • I found a great Stoney Clover community on Instagram and Facebook
  • I have a better idea of what I want to do with my life: write, read, and write some more!
  • I realized that I truly love creating content and want to immerse myself more into this space and work dam hard at it
  • I love being around my friends and can step outside my comfort zone to travel more
  • I've stopped looking for things that make me upset on social media and elsewhere
  • I am on a journey to be a more positive person

The past year really hasn't been as bad as I thought. I have a lot of good around me and I'm learning to not be on everyone else's timeline. I don't really need a significant other to be happy. Maybe I never want to get married and have kids -- who knows! I am doing my best to live my life the way I want, to be the person I know I want to be... it just takes a lot of work.

No one is on the same wavelength. Just because I am the only single person in my friend group doesn't mean I am less than. For my entire life I have put being in a relationship on a pedestal, thinking that's the only thing that will ever fulfill me but really, I have a very full life. I am also very lucky that my best friends don't make me ever feel self-conscious about my single life, which I think is not the case for a lot of people.

I also take solace in knowing that life can change at any given moment. I can meet the love of my life tomorrow. I can have a book published in three months. Anything can happen at any time and truly, I only have the power to change that. It all gives me hope! 

So today, as I enter my 29th year of life, I remain hopeful that the life I want is out there and that I have the ability to make all my dreams come true. And also that my life does not have to look like everyone else's to be full. I do not have to live by societal standards to be happy and feel like I'm worth something. I'm perfectly fine on my own! 

This was quite the tangent but it was very therapeutic. Here's to making 29 a great year and a great farewell to my twenties! 

xoxo
B

We are now fully transitioning to the winter nail polish season which means I'm saying goodbye to the mauves, pumpkin oranges, and browns. I'm now saying hello to reds, golds, silvers, glitters, and anything that reminds me of winter. 

I recently went through my entire nail polish collection and got rid of a lot of old, expired polishes so I was in need of a few new colors. During the Sephora sale, I spotted this gorgeous peppermint-themed/scented nail kit from Nails INC and knew I needed it. I love when polishes come in sets that have a built-in ombre. 



The set comes with four full-size nail polishes, for $22 which is an unbeatable price. It's peppermint scented, which is interesting but also peppermint-inspired because it comes with a dark red, neutral red, baby pink, and light pink polish. All the polishes also have candy-inspired names which are so sweet. It truly puts me in the Christmas spirit. 

As soon as I received this set, I immediately had to try out one of the red shades. I used Peppermint Place which is classified as deep red and I was in love. It's a beautiful, true red color that screams Christmas and winter. It also pairs perfectly with the other colors if you did in fact want to do an ombre manicure which I am sure I will do at some point.

The polish applies easily and is not too sloppy, though it is a red polish so it did get a little messy at times, however, I've definitely had messier.

I loved how the polish dried very shiny and just looked beautiful on my nails. It's been a while since I had a decent red polish in my collection and I'm very happy with this one.


One thing aside from being a little messy is that since it's a red polish, it chipped a little faster than other polishes but I will have to put the other colors to the test before I decide if it's the color or formula. 

Even if the polishes are a little messy and chip a little easier, I'm still very into the collection and happy I have it! I mean, the polishes are still high quality and worth every penny, especially for the $22 price tag. I think that if you're in need of new winter polishes and want something with a Merry twist, this is a great set! I think it would also make a fantastic gift, especially for a Secret Santa that might have a price limit. 

What's on your nails this Monday?
xoxo
B

Happy Black Friday! Happy Belated Thanksgiving! Happy Friday! This week was short and perfect. I decorated my house for Christmas, had a perfect holiday, and just felt good. My birthday is on Tuesday, tomorrow I'm going out with my friends and today I just want to spend it lounging and watching Christmas movies. 

It's officially my favorite time of the year and I'm going to do my best to stay present and positive. I've realized I need more of that in my life and I think it'll do me some good. 

Thanksgiving was really wonderful; the food was good, I had a great day with my family and I'm very thankful for the day, and for everything I have. 

I have been shopping up a storm the past few weeks and I need to slow down, but I put together an entire Cyber Week guide to the best sales around. I'll also be sharing everything I bought on my Like to Know It and below, of course! 

Let's get into the roundup! 

Pink Positivity of the Week

Thanksgiving was a real positive part of this week. Thanksgiving Eve was calm and nice - my mom, sister and I baked and decorated Gingerbread Turkeys, while watching A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, after decorating for Christmas. It was very wholesome and sweet.

Links I Loved

What You Missed on Royally Pink

What I Bought This Week

I purchased two new charms from my favorite jewelry brand, Jet Set Candy-- the Hot Chocolate Apres Ski and the New York City Taxi Cab. I also ordered a new Christmas sweatshirt from My Oh My Supply Co. Below is everything else! 


xoxo
B

The biggest shopping week of the year has arrived and it's also one of the most overwhelming times to be an avid online shopper. My email inbox and Instagram feed is filled to the brim with promotions, sales, and gifts with purchase from my favorite brands and retailers, as well as some brands I don't even like! 

Sales started earlier than ever this year, some appearing during the first week of November to get ahead of the supply chain issues and to maximize earnings.

I've already been shopping up a storm and it's honestly not good. I have spent more money in the past few weeks than I have in a long time but my, this time of year always gets me! I also figured that instead of waiting until actual Black Friday to post my sale report, I would post now so you can start shopping! 

Most retailers are calling out if this is their true Black Friday sale or if something better will come along in a few days but I think it's safe to say, we have officially transitioned to Cyber Week as the week before Thanksgiving vs just a few days of good deals. 

Let's get into it, shall we? I'm only sharing the sales that I would shop for myself! 



Clothes & Accessories

Kate Spade: Up to 50% off select items with code BFPREVIEW 

Nordstrom: Up to 50% off select clothes, accessories, and more

Baublebar: 30% off everything with code BB30

Bloomingdales: 25% off select items that are labeled 25% off

Love Shack Fancy: Extra 20% off sale items, no code needed! 

Tory Burch: 30% off $250 select items, no code needed! 

Lele Sadoughi: 25% off everything with code BF25

Hill House: Up to 50% off select items

Loren Hope: 20% off sitewide with code GETGLAM 

Good American: 25% off the website with code BF25

Jet Set Candy: 30% off the entire website, no code needed

Jack Rogers USA: 30% off entire site with code YAY30

Spanx: 20% off everything

Slip Silk: 25% off everything

Abercrombie: 30% off almost everything

Rowing Blazers: 25% off sitewide

Beauty


Kristin Ess Hair: 30% off Kristin Ess Hair Tools at Target 

Summer Fridays: 20% off everything with code SFXCW

Merit Beauty: 20% off the entire website - starting on Black Friday

L’Occitane: 20% off *almost* everything. No code needed! 

KKW Fragrance: 30% off sitewide, prices as marked

Laura Geller: Up to 60% off

Olive & June: 25% off with code HAPPY25

Billie: 20% off orders over $30+ with code YAY20

Home 

Otherland Candles: TBD but the sale starts on Thanksgiving

Evil Queen Candles: 20% off the entire website, no code needed

Barefoot Dreams
: 25% off select items

Anthropologie: 30% off select items

Wellness

Love Wellness: 20% off everything with code HOLIDAY21


I'll keep updating this post as I see new sales so be sure to bookmark and come back over the next few days!

xoxo
B

 Happy Friday! It was quite the week and I'm happy it's over! I was really sick this week... I think I just had a cold and maybe a little virus but it knocked me out. It started last week and continued throughout the weekend, especially after I had an allergy attack on Saturday. It wasn't Covid, which was great, and I'm finally feeling better which is good since I have a wedding tomorrow!

I also can't believe that Thanksgiving is in less than a week! Then, I get to celebrate my birthday with my friends, and then it's my actual birthday on the 30th. I'll be 29 years old and I'm nowhere near ready to face that. 

For now, I will just sit on my couch, watching Gilmore Girls and eating chocolate chip pumpkin bread, to soak in the last bit of fall before we welcome the Christmas season! 

Let's get into the post! 



Pink Positivity of the Week 

It was an incredible pop culture week and those are truly my favorite! We got: Taylor's Version of 'Red', Britney was freed, Paris Hilton got married, Lindsay Lohan is in a new movie, Pete and Kim are dating, Adele released a new album, Shawn and Camila broke up... I can go on and on! Oh, and we got Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip which is incredible television. These weeks keep me going and I am an unapologetic lover of all things pop culture. 

Links I Loved

What You Missed on Royally Pink

I went on a bit of a bender and I need to calm down. I placed a hefty order on Olive and June for the following: Press on System, Bunny Slope Polish, World Lit Polish, Cable Knit polish, and Cozy Lodge Nail Stickers.



xoxo
B

 It was only a few months ago that I finally read Alex Michaelides's first novel "The Silent Patient", after hearing about it for years. I haven't written a book review on that and I'm not sure if I will because it's such a widely popular book but we'll see. 

This time around, it didn't take me too long to read Michaelides's second novel, "The Maidens". I had chosen it as a Book of the Month a few months ago and read it last month... I devoured it within two days and I am floored. I had heard some mixed reviews about this one; some people really liked it while others really did not. I wasn't sure what to expect but I was delighted at how much I loved this book.

I read a lot of books like this; thrillers and crime novels of any kind are my favorite genre so it's hard to keep me on the edge of my seat and keep me guessing. The Maidens did all of that. It was incredible - definitely one of my favorite books of the year.

Let's get into it! 



Publisher's Summary

Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens.

Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge.

Mariana, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister. And she becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students? And why does he keep returning to the rites of Persephone, the maiden, and her journey to the underworld?

When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything—including her own life.

My Thoughts

As I said above, I loved this book so much. I read it in a few days and simply couldn't stop. I was completely enthralled and truthfully, I liked it so much better than The Silent Patient. The Silent Patient's ending is what made everyone go crazy for it and while you get a similar twist at the end of The Maidens, the entire book was much more interesting.

The pacing is much faster but still a normal speed with a lot of character and plot development. It was the type of novel that made you think the answer was obvious but when you think really hard about it, and see everything unfold you see that you were wrong the entire time. 

There were definitely characters in this book that were big question marks; they made me feel icky but they weren't really being portrayed that way in the book. It was really interesting and kept you guessing the entire time.

The plot, how Mariana is positive that Professor Fosca is killing people on campus, is a wild rollercoaster and it was really difficult to try to figure out the ending and if her suspicions were correct.

A few other things to note: I loved that this took place in England, I loved the Greek mythology focus and how that was really woven throughout the entire novel. It added an element of depth and realness. 

This might be a bit of a spoiler so the reader beware but...this book takes place in the same universe as The Silent Patient. It's thrown into the middle of the book and when I figured it out, I was stunned. I actually had to stop reading and freak out. 

I love when books, movies, etc take place in the same universe and throw subtle nods at each other...however, this was much more than a nod and it was truly one of the best parts of the book.

All in all, this book left my jaw hanging open and with a severe book hangover. If you love psychological thrillers, loved The Silent Patient, Verity, and any other intense read, you will live for "The Maidens"! 

xoxo
B

 Getting dressed for Thanksgiving is always my favorite; it's always fall colors, comfy textures, and a little trendiness with some classic twists. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday so it shouldn't be a surprise that I love dressing for it! 

This year, I think I'm going to be a little more dressed than usual because, for the first time in a while, I won't be in my own home and will probably be at my grandpa's house. I'm also trying to experiment more with my outfits, as I've said before so we'll see what I come up with.

I did want to put together a little guide on what to wear to Thanksgiving this year because I honestly have really been into fashion lately, more than usual I think. I really love the classic look with a trendy twist, and I think it's my new vibe.

That being said, I have been adoring everything I see from Loft and J.Crew. They are two of my favorite retailers that I think always nail the classics and do a good job at putting trends forward as well. Most of these outfits are from Loft with a few randoms thrown in, like my favorite Good American jeans. 

No matter what your style is, you'll be able to find something in this little guide that you can recreate for Thanksgiving this year! 




Houndstooth Dress

Chunky Knits

Polka Dots & Leather

Textures & Layers

Classic Black

Casual and Trendy



xoxo
B

 It's that time of year! Gift guides are everywhere and you're about to get mine as well. However, I do pride myself on stepping outside the zone of traditional gift guides. I like to be fully transparent and do gift guides for the type of person I identify with or with who I need to get gifts for. For example, I don't do men's gift guides because I don't have any men in my life that I buy gifts. I want this to be real and easy. 

Some of these categories repeat themselves from past years, some are more straight on the nose, like your mom, and some are new. If you're curious about what I did last year, take a look at the 2020 gift guide

Now, let's dive deep into this year's gift guide and all the categories! 




For Your Mom

For The Beauty Queen

For The Book Lover

For The Person Who Needs a Wellness Routine

For The Mental Health Advocate

For The Bravo SuperFan

For the Cocktail Connoisseur



Happy shopping! 
xoxo
B

 Happy Friday everyone! This week flew by for me and I'm sad about it. I want things to slow down; time is just moving so fast and I want to savor every moment of my favorite season.

The week was pretty solid; I felt good, physically and mentally, for the most part, but Thursday I was just so sick. I think it's the drastic change in weather we've been experiencing in New York but I feel a little better now so hopefully, it stays that way.

Thanksgiving is just two weeks ago and I can't wait! It's my favorite holiday and I just want to eat all the good food. I also have a wedding next weekend, then a birthday party for myself and my best friend after Thanksgiving, and then my actual birthday. There's a lot going on over the next few weeks and I'm excited for all of it.

What I think I'm most excited about is Christmas. I am usually the type of person who doesn't even think about Christmas until after Thanksgiving but this year that is so different. I just want to be cozy and jolly and merry. I even considered decorating for Christmas now and maybe watching a movie or two but decided against it... I'm not there yet and still savoring the little bit of pumpkin spice season left.

This weekend I'm going to chill out, do some writing and maybe bake a few things!

Let's get into the wrap-up!



Pink Positivity of the Week 

This was a great week for things I love; we got a new WW plan on Monday (I need to do an update on this!), Apres Ski Stoney Clover collection on Wednesday, and today, "Red" Taylor's Verison is released. It's a solid week that made me so happy! 

Links I Loved

What I Bought This Week 

I have been dying for the original Press for Champagne Button for years... and I finally purchased it when it came back in stock. I can't wait to hang this in my room! I also went a little crazy with Stoney Clover this week... 


Have a great weekend!
xoxo
B

 It was a very long time ago that I listened to The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan but it remains one of my favorite books. That's why, when I heard that they were finally releasing the sequel, I was completely overjoyed. 

The first book left on such a cliffhanger, and so much had changed within the royal family since 2015, I was curious to see how they were going to tackle this new book. I mean, Harry aka Freddie in the book, actually did marry an American, just like Nick and Bex. Then, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex decided to leave royal life behind because of the press... much like the situation that Nick and Bex are put through in this installment.

Life imitates art more than we even realize.

I devoured "The Heir Affair" in just a few days and I was left speechless by the entire thing. I think I liked it better than "The Royal We"... it was so different and so spectacular. I cannot get over how perfect this book was. 



Publisher's Summary

After a scandalous secret turns their fairy-tale wedding into a nightmare, Rebecca "Bex" Porter and her husband Prince Nicholas are in self-imposed exile. The public is angry. The Queen is even angrier. And the press is salivating. Cutting themselves off from friends and family, and escaping the world's judgmental eyes, feels like the best way to protect their fragile, all-consuming romance.

But when a crisis forces the new Duke and Duchess back to London, the Band-Aid they'd placed over their problems starts to peel at the edges. Now, as old family secrets and new ones threaten to derail her new royal life, Bex has to face the emotional wreckage she and Nick left behind: with the Queen, with the world, and with Nick's brother Freddie, whose sins may not be so easily forgotten—nor forgiven.

My Thoughts

As I said before, I loved this book! The writing was outstanding - it was complex and so real. It's not that other books don't feel real but they feel like books... this felt like I was spying on real people, or watching a movie. The conversations, especially between Bex, Nick, Freddi and their friends, felt so chaotic and all over the place -- it was so real, like it actually happened. I loved that so much! 

"The Heir Affair" was not what I expected; it starts off feeling very Meghan and Harry because Bex and Nick run away but then it quickly turns into something very dramatic, almost soap opera like, because the plot was unbelievable. 

Unlike the first book, I had a hard time picturing William, Kate and Harry in these roles. I think because the relationship between Freddi and Bex had changed so much, it was just really unrealistic but I liked it better that way! It's not a true story and it shouldn't read like one. It should also be said that I felt horrible for Freddie the entire time; without giving anything away, I almost felt like him and Bex were meant to be. It just hurt my heart a lot and I was lowkey rooting for them... but what happened was even better, in a very poetic way. 

The plot that got really dramatic was outrageous; I never expected it and it really threw me for a loop, in a wonderful way. I think Cocks and Morgan really went 'there' and took a risk. It almost felt like jumping the shark but in a really wonderful way.

There were multiple secrets revealed within the novel and all of them were shocking and perfect to move the story along. I felt as if I were reading multiple books within one.

The Royal We/Heir Affair is the original royal book series... before American Royals, before Red, White & Royal Blue, to me, this was the first. It paved the way for Will/Kate/Harry inspired books in the best way possible. 

If you love the Royal Family or just love romance, British culture, or love triangles, I cannot recommend this series enough. Also, if you read The Royal We all those years ago, you need to finish the series with The Heir Affair! 

xoxo
B

I have written a few of these Current Obsessions posts in the past but they were always focused on one category... however, over the past few months, I find myself really being drawn to a random assortment of things that just bring me a lot of joy. 

These are items that I can't stop using and can't stop talking about; they are all great in their own way and truly cannot get enough of them! 

Let's get into it... 

Glossier Cookie Butter Balm Dot Com



Balm Dot Com is my favorite lip balm of all time and when the band announced that they were launching a Cookie Butter scent for the holidays, I rushed to the website. I was so excited because I love anything Cookie Butter scented/flavored, and it was the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit. I don't know what I was expecting when I smelled this but I was shocked. It smells exactly like Cookie Butter... like exactly! It smells so delicious, so perfect and it adds the slightest nude tint to your lips, while still having the same, great moisturizing formula of regular Balm Dot Com. Whenever I use this balm, I am transported to the North Pole and it puts the biggest smile on my face. 

Starbucks Sugar Cookie Latte 



On the same cookie note... Starbucks holiday drinks are the highlight of my year and I'm always delighted when a new one enters the chat. This year that drink is the Sugar Cookie Latte and as someone who isn't a fan of sugar cookies, I'm not sure what I was expecting. I was delighted, though, when I tried it and immediately became obsessed. It is so good! It tastes just like a sugar cookie but isn't too sweet. It has a hint of nuttiness too that I think helps cut the sugar. I've had two already and I get mine with almond milk and with only three pumps of syrup versus four. This is going to be my drink of the season and I'm so happy about it! 

Hotel Lobby Candles



I have heard and seen Hotel Lobby Candles for over a year but never bought one... until I started following Lindsay Silberman, the owner of the brand, and fell in love with her! When they launched holiday candles a few weeks ago, I knew I needed one. If you didn't know, Hotel Lobby Candles was created by journalist turned blogger/influencer, Lindsay Silberman, and they are luxury candles that are supposed to smell like your favorite hotel lobbies. 

The holiday scent I chose was Chalet and it has been sitting on my desk for a few days and makes my entire room smell delicious, without even lighting it. Chalet is meant to smell like a ski chalet and the notes are cinnamon, bergamot, cardamom, amber, and cedarwood. It's the perfect winter candle that I can't wait to light once I'm in the true apres-ski mood.

I loved this candle so much, without even lighting it, I ordered the Paris scent because I am really into Paris right now. I can't wait for it to arrive because a lot of people say it's their favorite!

Stoney Clover Flat Pouches

I don't think I really have to explain this one. I am Stoney Clover's biggest fan and a huge fan of their discontinued, once in a while, vegan leather flat pouches. I have a handful of flat pouches and just purchased another one from their American Girl collection. I love using them as clutches but I've been using them as iPad cases for the past few weeks and I love it! With my new iPad, I like to have it case-free... I just like the way it looks and feels, but I don't want to have it out in the open all the time. The SCL flat pouch is perfect for that. 

The vegan leather pouches are only available at select times, in select collaborations now (a few from the American Girl collection are still available) but you can also use the clear flat pouches for this! 

Replica Fragrances



For the past year or so, I have been really into perfumes. I don't know what came over me but I am simply obsessed with buying all different types of fragrances; it's a little luxury that really makes me so happy. One of the brands I have come to really love is Maison Margiela Replica fragrances. Years ago, I fell in love with By the Fireplace and Under The Lemon Trees. This past spring, Bubble Bath was my go-to and then, I discovered the scent Autumn Vibes. I haven't touched any of my other perfumes in a good two months because these take the cake. Each one is so unique and light... the scent lasts a long time but they aren't overpowering. These are my new go-to! 

What have been your current obsessions lately?
xoxo
B


 It was only right before the pandemic that I purchased my iPad Mini 5. I was feeling sorry for myself because my boyfriend was breaking up with me and I had gotten my tax return so why not treat yourself? It was a great purchase because who knew just a few weeks later we would be locked in the house for months?

That iPad kept me sane and really opened my eyes to what a good iPad can be used for. I raved about it over the past *almost* two years but I had been contemplating getting an additional or a different iPad. I wanted something bigger, but I'm not really sure why? I was just kind of bored I guess.

I wrestled with the idea of a new iPad for a while but then when I found out Apple was holding a September event for their new launches and new iPad were part of it, I knew I had to wait it out. I watched that event live and when I saw the new iPad Mini 6 and how upgraded it actually was, I knew that that was the way to go.

The Apple event made it look too good to pass up and I had to have it immediately. 







I ordered the iPad Mini 6 in 'Pink' the moment it was available for purchase and received it on September 24th. I was giddy with excitement and honestly do not remember the last time I loved a tech purchase so much... I guess it was my Macbook Air I purchased in January 2021. Man, Apple products just speak to my soul! 

Anyways, as soon as my iPad arrived in the mail, I was obsessed. It is really sleek, very fast and so lightweight. It feels so different from the other iPads also, because of the very rectangular design. The corners are sharp and it feels much more tech-like than anything else I have.

The iPad Design and Technology

 This iPad also comes with iOS15 already installed so you have the most up-to-date Apple technology which I think makes a huge difference. I love iOS15 and think on the iPad it looks and runs even better. I mean, the iPad is also fast because it's brand new but I just think it's a big difference. 

Another big difference is also the size; this iPad mini is slightly bigger than the iPad Mini 5 but there is no home button, therefore, the screen is so much bigger, which I love! I think having a bigger screen makes using the iPad a lot easier and more user-friendly. Having everything be slightly bigger gives the illusion that the iPad itself is bigger. 

The home button is not removed completely, it's now located on the top right of the iPad, and Touch ID is now enabled, which I love. It makes everything so much more convenient.

As for the color, I got the shade Pink but it's hardly a color at all; it's super light and very reflective. That doesn't necessarily bother me but I wish it was a touch darker so you can actually see the fact that it's pink. Though


I think all of the colors in this launch were very light and a little techy. 

How I Use It

I am still using my iPad the same way that I have in the past but I think I use it more than my other iPads, solely because of the weight and size. This iPad feels so different in your hand and in a way, it makes using it a lot easier. 

There are days where I use my iPad more than my phone. I have my messages hooked up to it for now (I might change this in the future) so I can be laying on my living room couch, my phone charging in my bedroom, and be fine. 

I have been reading a lot on my iPad; I have both a Kindle and Nook and stick to reading exclusively on those. I usually hate reading on an iPad because of the screen but now, I can adjust brightness and coloring on both apps and my iPad is faster than both. Also, for certain books I like that there is a bit of color in the screen; I like reading self-help books on the iPad because it feels more like a regular book to me. Because of the large screen, the nature of the fast processing, and the fact that it's so easy to get to, I like to be able to reference things in these books faster than I would be able to on a normal e-reader.

In addition to reading books, I use my iPad to read articles and blogs, a lot! I like reading on here more versus my computer or phone because it feels more natural. 

Another way I use this, and probably my favorite way is to use it as a double screen for my work computer. I couldn't do this with my old iPad because of the outdated tech but with this one, ah it's so nice! I use a software called 'Duet' that allows me to hook up the iPad to my work computer and viola, double screen! It's such a huge help when it comes to managing a heavy workload and it makes me feel super professional, which I love.

Worth It or Not? 

All in all, I definitely think if you just want a simple iPad and aren't someone with a business, someone who's in school or is an artist, I think an iPad mini will suit you just fine. I think iPad pros and regular iPads are better for those who utilize an iPad more than a computer, or who need a bigger screen for creative purposes. 

There are enough differences between the iPad Mini 6 and the older models to make a case for upgrading; it feels totally different from the other iPad minis I've had and I'm simply obsessed!

What are your thoughts on iPads?
xoxo
B

TGIF. This week was sort of slow and sort of fast at the same time. I feel like so much happened but not much changed if that makes sense. I took a little staycation from Monday-Wednesday and I really enjoyed it. I just needed a break from work and I had the PTO days so I treated myself.

I spent the week writing, shopping, and giving myself some TLC (i.e: pedicure and haircut). It was a delight and really helped me unplug and recharge. It was really needed because I felt myself getting burnt out. I've never really taken a staycation like this, just one day off here and there but this was incredible and something I should've done a while ago. 

That being said, I felt so much better when I got back to work yesterday morning and now it's already the weekend so I planned that really well.

There are lots happening over the next few days: tomorrow is the Stoney Clover Saturday Sale aka their version of Black Friday and Cyber Monday where you can get 20% off the entire site. Today, the Sephora VIB Sale starts where Rouge can get 20% off, VIB's get 15% and Beauty Insider gets 10% off. 

Then, on Monday Airbnb will open ONE SINGLE BOOKING for the Carrie Bradshaw apartment... and then on Wednesday, Stoney Clover launches their Apres Ski collection which I am dying for. They have been teasing it so much and it looks stunning, probably my favorite collection ever.

Whew, that was a lot. Let's get right into the roundup.



Pink Positivity of the Week

I have to say, getting a haircut was a real highlight. I went to a new salon and it was super relaxing and easy. I was in and out in less than an hour and I love how my hair came out. I just did a little trim and some layers on the bottom but it just feels great.

Also, Starbucks released their holiday drinks on Thursday and it was a true highlight. I'm feeling way more Christmasy than normal at this point in time and I'm ok with that. I haven't decorated but I'm in a cozy mood.

Links I Loved

What You Missed on Royally Pink

What I Bought This Week 



xoxo
B

 It's that time of year again! The Sephora sale starts tomorrow for VIB Rouge and it's the perfect time to do all your holiday shopping or to stock up on your favorites. You know the drill by now: this sale comes twice a year and is 20% off for Rouge, 15% off for VIB, and 10% for Beauty Insider. 

I usually go a little crazy during the sale and this time around won't be any different. I've been putting off my Sephora cart for a little over a month to wait for the sale and I'm ready for some new beauty products. I recently decluttered a bunch of really old products that I had been holding onto for some reason and my collection, while still hefty, is missing some essentials. 



This sale is coming at a great time as my skin is starting to change because of the weather, and I know my sister and mom are asking for some beauty items for Christmas. For this post, I'm going to be breaking it up by what I'm buying, what I recommend for gifts, and then what I recommend for yourself, by category.

I'll try to make it as different as possible as the April post but some recommendations always stand! Let's get into it.

What I'm Buying
Gift Ideas
Makeup
Skincare
Haircare

 I have been a fan of B.A Paris since listening to "Behind Closed Doors" on Audible a number of years ago. I went on to listen to her books "Bring Me Back" and "The Breakdown". I loved all of those books but especially "Behind Closed Doors" ... it was one of the first thrillers to really knock my socks off and make me fall in love with the genre.

It's been a few years since I listened to Audible; I much prefer podcasts over audiobooks nowadays but I still need my B. A Paris therefore, I bought one of her latest novels to read. "The Dilemma" was released in June 2020 and I read it rather recently.

I flew through this novel in a few days and I'm indifferent about it. I liked it but I don't know if I recommend it. I think I went into it with different expectations and it just didn't follow the path I thought it was going to.  Though, I still enjoyed it. It was just odd. 

Let's get into it!



Publisher's Summary

Knowing the truth will destroy her. Keeping it secret will destroy him.

It’s Livia’s 40th birthday, and her husband Adam is throwing her the party of a lifetime to make up for the wedding they never had. Everyone she loves will be there, except her daughter Marnie, who’s studying abroad. But Livia is secretly glad Marnie won’t be there.

Livia has recently uncovered a secret about their daughter which, if revealed, will shake the foundation of their family to its core. She needs to tell Adam, but she’s waiting until the party is over so they can have this last happy time together.

Adam, meanwhile, has his own surprise for Livia: he’s arranged for Marnie to secretly fly back for the party. But before Marnie arrives, Adam hears some terrible news. Now he too is faced with a dilemma: Does he share what he's learned with his wife? Is hiding the truth the same as telling a lie? And how far are Adam and Livia willing to go to protect the ones they love—and give each other a last few hours of happiness?

My Thoughts

This was a really sad book and you find out why rather quickly. It made me sad, it was honestly a little scarring to the point where I started dreaming about the characters and the situation that plays out throughout the novel. 

The writing in the book was fantastic, the pacing was great and the development was awesome. In reality, it was a really well put together book that made reading it very easy but at its core, it was a weird story.

The idea of Liva wanting to throw this party for her was so weird. It made me hate her character because of the fact that she so desperately wanted this big 40th birthday because she didn't get a wedding and didn't have her parents around felt childish. 

When you look at what the story is about, this life-altering secret that Adam is keeping on Liva's party day, the party itself seems so stupid. You spend a lot of the book trying to figure out whose side you're on; do you think Adam should tell Liva about the secret? Or should Liva reveal the secret she is holding about their daughter?

The secret Adam is holding is gut-wrenching while the secret Liva is holding is so gross, it made me so angry. There is so much back and forth, so many good arguments on both sides and you can definitely see where both characters are coming from. Despite everything, it's truly a lose/lose situation and while I can see where Adam is coming from, his secret being kept from Liva and everyone else is really dumb. 

I didn't hate this book; it wasn't one of my favorites but I thought it was an interesting read and it provoked a lot of emotion from me so I guess that's good! It kept me on the edge of my seat because I just wanted to see what happened when both secrets were revealed.

It wasn't Paris' best work but it was a fine book.

Did you read "The Dilemma"? What did you think? 

xoxo
B


We're well into the fall season and since it's the beginning of November, I guess now is a good time to get into the items on my fall fashion wishlist. I've been really into clothes lately, though I don't have anywhere to go or anything to do. That doesn't change the fact that I want so many new, beautiful things! 

I've spoken previously about how I always feel out of place in fashion; I don't feel super stylish and that I just like to be comfortable. However, that has changed recently. I've been wanting to be more stylish, to wear more trendy items but also not overthink it. I want to feel like myself and look like myself, without adhering to everyone elses' guidelines and standards. I also have realized what looks good on me and what doesn't so I've been trying to play into that more too. 



If I look good, I feel good and I radiate that energy so I'm going to stick to what I know and add some flair where I can. 


In the past, I felt like that my style was preppy but that also went with the times, when everyone was dressing trendy. Now, I think I lean more toward the grandmillennial style with a mix of classic and comfort. I also have expensive taste... I go onto the LoveShackFancy website at least once a day and dream of wearing everything there but I know it's not realistic.

All of that being said, I am channeling my inner Nancy Meyers/Meg Ryan/Christian Girl Autumn for the rest of the fall season. For the winter? We'll get to that in a few weeks! 

Below is everything on my wishlist aka what I wish I could buy but probably won't... and also wanted to share a few of my favorite outfits I've worn recently. 





My Current Favorite Fall Looks


This is the perfect fall outfit: Loft Pumpkin Spice sweater
Zella Leggings
Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis
Antonio Melani x Nicola Bathie Flats


BB Dakota Dress
Jack Rogers Booties (similar

Even though I want to dress a little differently, a little more put together I will always be a leggings and sweatshirt girl at heart! 


xoxo
B

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