It all depends on the season. In fall, I love anything pumpkin. My house is filled with pumpkin candles just waiting to be lit. There’s nothing like fresh pine needles and gingerbread cookies at Christmas. And in spring/summer I love fresh flowers and fruit.
In terms of perfume, I have a super embarrassing confession to make. Six years ago, my friend Jen and I conducted a blind smell test at the Macy’s beauty counter in an effort to find our signature scents. We paid no attention to brand names, celebrity endorsements, or pretty bottles. After countless spritzes, I ended up picking the Paris Hilton perfume. And yes, I still wear it. I’m ashamed in my heart.
2. Favorite Food
For real? Of the things I can eat, right now I am loving sweet potatoes. Slow baked in the oven and topped with a teaspoon of coconut butter.
3. Favorite Sound
My dog’s bark. Nothing makes me happier than hearing her adorable “roo roo” when I come home.
4. Favorite Picture currently on your phone
5. Best memory of the year so far
I’ve had a lot of great moments this year. Top ones include getting the keys to my first place, getting promoted, and spending an awesome night reunited with my two childhood best friends.
Excited to be linking up again with the Sunday Social crew! I’ve missed having this weekly check-in with such a great community.
1. What is your favorite breakfast food?
I had the best breakfast burrito in the history of time at this little dive in Pittsburgh called Deluca’s. Scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, hashbrowns, and veggie bacon all wrapped up in a tortilla. I’ve also had really good Nutella French toast at a local place. On a daily basis, I can not live without my Carnation Instant Breakfast which I have had for breakfast every single weekday since I was 12.
2. What is the best way to spend a free day?
What is this “free day” you speak of? This does not exist in my life. Sometimes, if I’m lucky, I have a couple free hours in a row. If it’s nice, I like to go walk dogs at the kennel. If it’s not, a good book or a Netflix binge with my dogs and some crock pot experimentation.
My girl, Jade.
3. If you had an airline ticket to anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Based on cost of flight, I would pick India. My list of places to go is endless, but if someone gives me the option of a free ticket, I’m definitely picking somewhere I can’t afford to fly on my own.
4. You can only leave the house with one thing…what is it?
Is this an emergency situation? If so, my dogs. If it’s just regular, everyday, I’m-so-late-grab-one-thing then I would say my phone. It’s not that I can’t live without it, but I feel more secure when it’s on me in case my car breaks down or something.
5. How do you take your coffee?
I’m not really a coffee drinker, but when I do drink it I usually get skim milk and some kind of flavoring added in. I much prefer a fruity green tea or spicy chai tea with nothing added.
I’m sad to see summer winding to a close, but I’m so happy for all the experiences I had. I actually had an amazing moment this morning and want to share it before diving into Sunday Social:
I woke up really early this morning, and since I couldn’t fall back asleep I decided to get up and go to the early service. The sermon was about how the Holy Spirit burns in our lives, hoping to set our hearts on fire for God. In the middle of this, the fire alarm went off and everyone had to evacuate. The entire church was searched, but no cause was found. We finished the sermon in the parking lot, knowing that God was announcing His presence and love for us.
What was your favorite trip/vacation/activity this summer?
My favorite trip this summer was to the Firefly Music Festival in Delaware! It was my first ever festival and it was an amazing experience. I saw 28 awesome bands in 3 days, made new friends, and had the greatest time. I will be going to music festivals every year for the rest of my life.
I also really loved just hanging out with friends and having wine nights or lake days. I’m lucky to have some really wonderful people in my life.
And last, but certainly not least, I loved going to Pittsburgh to help move my brother into his new apartment. His friends are awesome and I got to cook for them which I really enjoyed.
Favorite outfit look of the summer/clothing item?
I bought a super cute maxi dress for the festival and have been wearing it pretty much every week.
What is one thing you wish you had gotten to do this summer?
I wish I had gotten to go to the beach. Yes, for me the beach is the Jersey Shore. But I don’t go to Sleezeside or Belmar or Wildwood. I like the quieter areas, especially Spring Lake with the gorgeous beach mansions and cute shops. I also grew up going to my friend’s grandmother’s house on LBI and would have liked to do a trip down there.
Favorite Song of the Summer?
Some Nights by fun. or Naked Kids by GROUPLOVE
Favorite movie/tv show of the summer?
I barely saw any movies this summer, which is a shame considering I get two free tickets every Tuesday. But my favorite show was definitely Pretty Little Liars. Can you believe that finale?! Crazy.
Anything with animals cracks me up. And Suri making fun of celebrity children is hilarious.
Pinterest or Facebook? Why?
Pinterest. It makes my OCD self happy (categorized visual bookmarks!!) and I’ve made a ton of awesome recipes I found on the site, most recently the amazingly delicious Chocolate Peanut Butter Awesome Bars!
Twitter or Instagram? Why?
Twitter! I enjoy it because it’s a lot more interactive than Instagram: I’ve made long-distance friends and had some amazing conversations while tweeting! PS you can follow me @ictine 🙂
Favorite youtube video…post it!
This video reminds me sooo much of my own dog. It’s adorable and hilarious.
Biggest online pet peeve?
I hate when people complain constantly on twitter or facebook or their blogs. I know I’m guilty of complaining a little, but I always try to do it in a humorous way.
I officially need to pre schedule all of my link up blog posts because I am just never around the day of! I did have a legit excuse this weekend though, I was in the lovely city of Pittsburgh helping my brother move into his new apartment. Specifically, I spent Sunday moving his friends heavy couches up 8 twisty flights of stairs and cooking 100 meals for all the boys. Have I mentioned I’m the BEST sister?
What were you like in Middle School/HS? (pictures)
I was weird. I mean, I’ve always been weird. I was really shy and quiet and only came out of my shell with my best friends or onstage or at work where I ran birthday parties for kids. I was always super busy between 30 hours a week of dance class, play rehearsals, choir practice, color guard, working, teaching Sunday school, and fitting in time for friends. I read a ton and saved up my money to see Broadway shows. I loved doing things for my friends – throwing surprise parties and making creative gifts and silly parodies.
What were your favorite past times?
Performing, in any aspect. Even if it was just re-enacting a funny incident for friends. I loved being onstage – acting, singing, and dancing. I was the first student to ever be in all four plays and all four musicals in high school. When I wasn’t performing or rehearsing, I loved going on crazy adventures with my friends. We used to have dance parties in the Dairy Queen parking lot where one of my friends worked. We had crazy themed parties (ChristmaHannaBirthdayka) and went to all the dances and school functions together. We also spent weekends playing card games and hot tubbing. I loved my job, even though it was pretty crazy running birthday parties for 30 five year olds. I loved being creative and acting like a kid. I also liked teaching Sunday school – my class was four and five year olds and they were so adorable. Traveling was my biggest passion and I was so lucky to go to places like Hawaii, Mexico, and Europe throughout middle school and high school. I also spent lots of summer weekends on the lake boating, tubing, and water skiing with friends.
What songs were you obsessed with? (Backstreet Boys anyone?)
My best friends and I had a whole dance routine to Mambo Number Five which we HAD to perform every time we heard it. I also loved B*witched, N*Sync, Britney, Chrisina, and LFO. I spent most of high school listening to Broadway soundtracks: Les Mis, Aida, Rent, The Apple Tree, The Drowsy Chaperone, Chicago, Spring Awakening, 42nd Street, and many, many more.
What fashion statement do you look back on and cringe?
My middle school/high school style wasn’t too bad, but back in 5th grade I decided I was too cool for jeans and refused to wear them. This resulted in a lot of black sporty striped pants paired with nice tops. Yikes.
Who was your celeb crush?
I didn’t really have celeb crushes. Instead I pined over boys at school who I would never actually have the courage to talk to. I was super cool.
What were your favorite tv shows/movies?
Breakfast at Tiffany’s (and everything Audrey), White Christmas, The Charlie’s Angels movies, Spice World, Blue Crush, Finding Nemo, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
TV I was obsessed with Everwood, Friends, and TGIF
What a crazy week this has been. I’ve been super busy and will definitely catch up on here, but for now, enjoy!
What is your favorite Fall activity?
I love Fall, so there are wayyy too many for me to choose from! I love apple picking with friends and then baking delicious apple things. I like taking my dog for walks in the cool afternoons and jumping in piles of leaves. The farmer’s market is a must. And I’m addicted to all things pumpkin. Pretty much anything that involves food.
Do you follow a football team? if so which one and why?
Right now, my number one boys are Alabama. Yes, I’m really random. I have no connection to U of Alabama. I just love them. Although I have been to Alabama once, so I guess that counts. On the professional side, I’ve been an Eagles fan since I was 12 because I refused to be a typical North Jerseyan and root for the Giants. I’m also partial to the Saints since half of my family is from New Orleans.
What is something fun about Fall in your area?
We have a lot of great pick your own apple farms. Also being close to the city means seeing all the new fall shows.
Fav Fall outfit staples?
A cute dress. Military jacket. Gray lace leggings. Lots of boots. Cozy sweaters.
Thing you are looking forward to most about this coming Fall season?
Alabama football. Trying out new fall recipes.
Favorite Fall holiday? Traditions?
Post Columbus Day. Yes, it’s a holiday. My best friend and I made it up.
I’m so bummed I missed last week’s Sunday Social link-up, but I guess I can’t complain since I was at the greatest music festival ever!
Let’s get started, shall we?
What is your dream job?
My dream job would be Vice President of Marketing for either a client side company with a focus on social good or for an animal or child focused non-profit such as the SPCA or St. Jude’s. I definitely want to reach a high level in my career, but I want my ascent to be cause-based rather than money-based. Although paying off my loans eventually would be nice.
If you had just won the lottery and didn’t need to work for money, what would you do with your time?
I would definitely be extremely involved with non-profits. It would be awesome to be the director of a shelter and donate my salary right back. I would also travel everywhere and do some volunteering/mission work overseas. I think I’d also like to try out a bunch of different careers: maybe get back into acting, try out cooking, open my own bakery.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A ballerina. I mean, what 5 year old girl doesn’t want to be a ballerina? That progressed into dancer on Broadway, which then became actress until I decided at the last possible minute to go to school for marcom instead.
What piece of career advice would you give to someone just starting out in your field?
Intern. Even if it’s unpaid. It doesn’t even need to be a place with a true internship program. Ask a local charity or small business if you can come help them with their marketing/advertising/pr/events part time during the summer. You’ll gain valuable experience and a reference. I did an unpaid internship at a non-profit the summer after my sophomore year and that experience has led to multiple jobs and invaluable contacts in my field.
Biggest Pet Peeves either in life or in blogging or at work?
I dislike being undervalued because of my age. I understand that being at the bottom of the ladder means a lot of menial tasks sometimes, but I also have a lot to contribute. I’ve had amazing jobs where this was never an issue, but I’ve also encountered people that want to hand me all of their brainless busy work instead of getting me involved with big projects.
Failure. Voldemort. I’m not particularly fond of spiders/bugs/snakes or ferrets because they look like furry snakes.
After a very long weekend filled with very tough assignments, I’m finally doing my first Sunday Social link-up! This week is about travel, which is perfect since it’s pretty much my favorite thing. Also, I’m bummed I don’t have photos to go with some of my answers, but I deactivated my Facebook so I’d get work done, and all my pictures are on there.
Best trip you’ve ever been on?
Summer after I graduated high school, I went on a group trip to Europe with my best friend. For 3 weeks we got to explore Italy, Turkey, and Greece and it was absolutely amazing. I’m obsessed with history and loved seeing the places people built thousands of years ago. And the food. Oh, the food. I ate so much gelato and spanokopita, but didn’t gain a pound since we walked so much. We did a cruise of the Greek islands and I fell in love with Mykonos. I bathed on the rock beaches of Capri, shopped in bella Roma, danced with Greek men in Athens, and dived into the crystal clear Mediterranean waters. I was even proposed to in a Turkish market, but still haven’t received the promised goats, so I’m single for now.
Best idea for a girls weekend trip?
Two words: Napa Valley. Wineries upon wineries upon wineries. I think a Caribbean island like the Dominican Republic would also be great: relaxing on the beach with a cocktail by day, dancing all night.
Best idea for a couples trip?
Somewhere kind of rustic with lots to explore: I think Boulder or Denver would be great. Anywhere I could have silly adventures and come back to snuggle by a fireplace at night with my Turkish lover.
Best vacation on the cheap?
This year I discovered the beauty and affordability of off-season getaways. A friend and I ventured to Newport, Rhode Island in February. Not a lot of sailboats and rich people summering in February. Luckily, our trip coincided with a big Winter Festival full of music, food, tours, and wine. Everything was very cheap: we attended a hot wing competition for lunch and ate unlimited wings for $5. We explored the amazing mansions (The Breakers is a must-see), drove along the coast, tried amazing restaurants, toured and tasted at wineries and breweries, took trips to historical sites, listened to live music, and got lots of freebies from our resort. Our accommodations were amazing and actually practically free since my friend’s family gave us their timeshare points. It was great to experience such an amazing place outside of the high costs and huge crowds of summer.
Place you most want to visit?
I want to go everywhere so this question really isn’t fair. At the moment, I’m dying to go to Buenos Aires. Also high on my list are London, India, Colorado, Spain, Thailand, California, and the French Riviera.
Honestly, nothing. I mean, no, I don’t travel empty handed. I do make a packing list and try to adhere to it somewhat. But I’d be fine just hopping on a plane somewhere with a couple bucks in my pocket and a sense of adventure.