Back To School!

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Ok, well it might be the second fall that I’m not going to be in school, but I still love all of the back to school sales and items that go with starting school. Here are two of my favorite things:

  1. Planners! I love agendas, they possibly could be my favorite accessory. I typically get a Lilly Pulitzer agenda, but this year I didn’t like the patterns and decided to get something new. This year I got a ban.do planner, and I am obsessed. I got the planner that says I Am Very Busy in blue. Ban.do planners are cute, simple but fun, and have motivational says on certain days. I can’t wait to start using it in August!
  2. My second favorite thing is the Nordstrom Anniversary sale! I rarely buy a lot of clothes at once, but this year I needed some new clothes for work so I decided it was worth the splurge. I got 7 items, and I love all of them. Here are the links to the items I bought:
    • The Bouclé & Knit Drape Collar Jacket is super cute, and a perfect weight for wearing in the office.

    • The Belted Short Sleeve Top is perfect for fall, and comes in lovely colors for fall. I got the shirt in the green and navy, and I can’t wait to wear it!

    • I am obsessed with the Short Sleeve Chiffon Top in Garnet. It fits perfectly and the color is amazing; just don’t wear it in the heat if you get hot easily.
    • Another item that I love is the Halogen® Kick Flare Knit Ankle Pants. They are perfect for someone who is short, and doesn’t want to alter another pair of pants. They aren’t on Nordstrom’s website anymore, but you should definitely monitor it for them!
    • I bought one pair of shoes, the Vans ‘Classic’ Slip-On Sneaker in Black Patent Leather.  I bought the shoes to wear to work because I’m recovering from a stress fracture in my foot, and I needed a pair of gym shoes that didn’t look like gym shoes.
    • The final item that I bought was the Hooded Longline Cardigan in the Trend Section of the store. It is made by BP, which is the Nordstrom juniors brand. The sweater is super comfy, and perfect for fall weather.

I hope that everyone takes advantage of the Nordstrom Anniversary sale because there are tons of good deals on high quality items! Happy Fall Shopping 🙂

Chef Time

Recently, I have been working on improving my cooking skills. In the past, they have been one of my most abysmal skills that I possess. Deciding that I was going to start attempting to cook again definitely brought up some road blocks, but I knew that I had to try. I decide to try making Lamb Chops and Pasta Salad, and both recipes came out amazing. Here are pictures and recipes:

Lamb Chops

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Recipe

Rinse & place on broiler pan; if you want, you can put a little aluminum foil under it to make cleaning easier afterwards. You can bake them at 350 degrees for 20-30 min., then turn, put some oregano on, and cook for another 20-30 min. OR you can broil them – you have to watch carefully so they don’t burn.  It’ll probably take 5-10 minutes per side.
Cooking time can vary, depending on how thick they are.

 

Pasta Salad

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Recipe

Boil a full bag of bow tie pasta. Once it’s done, you rinse the pasta in cold water, then drain it. Put pasta in large bowl so you can stir. Chop up half a cucumber and half a red pepper [I used tomatoes instead of red pepper] or other various veggies and throw into the pasta bowl. Add balsamic vinaigrette or dressing of your choice to pasta, stirring so the dressing is coating all of the pasta and veggies. Leave pasta in fridge for one day and serve next day!

To improvise I added some feta to the pasta salad 🙂

Both recipes are super easy, and taste amazing.

Bon Appétit!

Cause Everyone Needs a Smile

With everything going on in the world, it’s important to find things to make yourself smile. For me, this video does that. Grace is an amazing, cheerful, and talented singer. Everyone needs to see her perform this song she wrote herself!

 

I LOVE Coffee

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I named my blog But First Café, because I have a serious obsession with coffee. I love all types, flavors, and ways of making coffee. This week I saw a BuzzFeed post about the best memes related to coffee, and they are all super accurate. For everyone with a coffee addiction like mine, enjoy!

Make Herstory

Hillary Glass Ceiling

In the past week, we made history by voting for Hillary Clinton. She finally became the first woman to win a party nomination. Until recently, I was never a Hillary Clinton fan. As a fellow Hilary/Hillary, I have gotten endless jokes related to her since I can remember. Due to the endless joking, I sincerely hated sharing my name with her because it’s annoying. However, once the candidates for each party became clearer, I became incredibly scared of the Republican Party and the views the candidates had. Then I looked at the Democratic Party, and while I loved a lot of the ideas Bernie Sanders has, I just didn’t think they were feasible in this political climate. This left me with Hillary Clinton, a strong female candidate with a variety of experience in politics and serving others. I was faced with a 20-year-old battle, between my years of jokes and people spelling my name wrong or voting for the best candidate in my opinion. I picked the second option, and while the jokes have gotten increasingly worse this political season, I am proud to say #ImWithHer. Also, today Oprah endorsed Hillary Clinton, and it’s awesome to see other powerful women supporting each other.  I am so excited to have the possibility of a woman president, and I really hope it happens.

Here’s a speech Hillary gave at her college graduation, she was the first ever student speaker. You can already tell that she was going to be an amazing leader in the future!

 

Why Social Workers Should be in Politics

While I was in graduate school basically all of my classmates hated the policy courses we had to take. However, a lot of the areas they wanted to work in depend on federal policies. Recently, the University of Southern California School of Social Work published this article about 6 Issues Social Workers Should Consider this Election. These six issues are extremely important this election, and we need to be educated on the issues the candidates the support and vote accordingly.

Let’s Get Carried Away

One of my all-time favorite shows is Sex and the City. I love the characters, plot, and how fashion was one of the main entities in the show. Since the show ended, Sarah Jessica Parker created her own shoe line. They are beautiful shoes, and I would die to have a pair. Recently, Sarah Jessica Parker went to Kleinfelds in New York to surprise some brides with of her shoes. I seriously wish I was one of them!

Happy 10th Birthday to the Hills!

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Today is the 10th Birthday of the only reality TV show that I like, The Hills. The Hills marked a change in TV, and created the genre called Reality TV. Since it was the first reality TV show, it was probably the most real at the beginning. There have been numerous BuzzFeed posts about The Hills, and this one is by far my favorite because it shows how real the Hills was at one point. The protagonist and my favorite person on the Hills, Lauren Conrad, has made quite a career for herself since leaving the show. This Levo post discusses some of her biggest accomplishments. But really, thank you MTV for developing the Hills and Happy 10th Birthday to the Hills!

Trapped

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Friday night I was lucky enough to attend a screening of the documentary, Trapped. The movie focuses on access to abortions in the Southern states, mainly Alabama, Mississippi, and Texas. As someone who has always lived in urban settings and in blue states, I was shocked at some of the laws different states have been implementing to make it nearly impossible for abortion clinics to stay open. The stories about some of the clients at these clinics broke my heart, and they also angered me. Most of the laws in these states were presented and written by men, so men want to control a woman’s right to make choices about her own body. I honestly think that if more men got to experience life as a woman, they would realize how dumb this is. By forcing clinics to close, the government is continuing the cycle of systemic poverty for women and their children. This alone can increase the amount of aid states provide to qualified impoverished residents. In Alabama, they keep passing different trap laws, which make it more difficult for abortion clinics to stay open. We were lucky enough to have one of the owners, June, at the conference Friday. If you’re at all interested in women’s rights and reproductive health, I strongly recommend Trapped.