dusting off

i thought my domain was going to expire in september. i got the notification over the summer that it would be happening, and that if payment wasn't set up, it would expire. and i thought to myself, 'maybe it's time.'

but then, for the first time in the eight years i've had this blog, my payment actually processed and my domain was renewed for another year in mid-august. and as the receipt came through i thought to myself, 'i guess it's not time.'

i've thought about walking away from here for years. since things started getting bad. because i wasn't sure if i had it in me anymore to write on the internet when i was falling apart. but i guess that's the beauty of doing this for the sake of doing it, not for my job: i get to decide when i come here. and i get to decide when i need a break.

it's not that i haven't had things to say. i've had so much to say. so many things have happened in my life, so much has changed. but i guess i don't want to share those things in the same way i did in the past. because i'm not the same person i once was.

i started this blog 8 years ago because i was bored at work. i was 22 and not creatively challenged and i made a challenge for myself. and i documented a lot of things, and i think it made a lot of people happy. and it made me happy too, at the time. but now i don't want to do that anymore.

i guess this blog is just going through some growing pains, like we all do. i've found out that i'm not actually an extrovert (like i previously thought) and i'm actually quite introverted, and i'm ok with that. i like working with brands, but i like buying things because i like them so i'd rather do that than wait to see if i can get a ~brand collab~ out of the deal. i like doing things on my own volition, and sometimes that lends itself well to a blog but a lot of the time it doesn't.

life moves fast, and i like to live my life in the moment now, not waiting to recap it somewhere else (here) to kind of relive it.

so i guess what i'm trying to say is this space is here, and i'm not going anywhere. but i will be using this space for a different purpose than i have in the past. and i don't think it really matters much because i honestly would be surprised if anyone actually read this post. but i don't really know what's going to be happening here or how it will evolve, so i guess we'll just take it as it goes.

my secret for all day waves with TREsemmé

when i was younger, getting curls to last in my hair was an act of god. i thought my hair was just too silky and too straight to hold onto any sort of body (#firstworldproblems). but as i got older, i just realized my curling technique was all wrong and i wasn't using the right products. thankfully, i grew up and learned how to do my hair properly plus TREsemmé's new line of compressed micro mist hairsprays keep my style locked in for days of effortless waves.
so how do i do it? let me show you.

first, i like to section my hair into two sections. i pull the top section up with a clip and then comb through the bottom section to get rid of any knots. then i grab about a one inch section of hair and run it through a one inch curling iron to heat the hair up.
then i slide my curling iron from root to mid-shaft and roll my hair up from there, leaving about half of the hair hanging like a tail. this ensures that the middle part of my hair gets a good curl and reinforces the shape. i count to somewhere around 10.
while still keeping all the hair in the iron, i open the barrel slightly and slide the curling iron down to the end of my hair, leaving about one inch out. this gives my hair less of that polished, pageant curl and a much more natural look. i roll the iron all the way up to my root and count to 10 again.
then i pull the iron out (not unraveling the curl), and pull the end of my hair with my fingers while it cools so the curl isn't so tight and ringlet-y. rinse and repeat! some people like to only curl in one direction, some change the direction each curl, i don't really care. i usually tend to curl away from my face but i'm also lazy and can't keep track of what went which way. but at the end, i always finish with a coating of hair spray. this makes sure that my hair really stays put but still natural. i rake my fingers through my hair to break up the ringlets and i am good to go.
TREsemmé's compressed micro mist hairsprays feature technology that results in targeted, efficient sprays that comes out softer. this means lightweight, flexible hold and fast-drying coverage. plus the cans are specially designed to cut the spray in half and narrow the cone angle of the traditional hairspray (so you don't wind up spraying your partner or your dog or anything else other than your hair). plus, the cans are real cute. they're smaller (5.5oz), and are ergonomically optimized and easier to hold. but you still get the same number of sprays in the 11oz can!
plus at just under $5 and available at wal-mart's all over, these hairsprays are always readily available. you're not going to be hunting a speciality boutique for them! 

the perfect morning omelette with stella cheese

omelettes are intimidating. like. i don't care what people say, they can be so hard to make without breaking or undercooking. and then trying to find the right cheese to go with it? forget it. for a while i figured it was just easier to go out and order an omelette at a restaurant and call it a day.

but when the folks at stella cheese challenged me to come up with a recipe featuring their amazing new cheeses, i thought now was the time to learn once and for all. but first, the cheese. the new stella cheese packaging is truly world class, especially the shaved parmesan i ended up using in my omelette. simply reaching into the container to sprinkle my cheese made everything so much easier. inspired by the Italian countryside, their new stella packaging is an inspiration to make every day gourmet. like you can be fancy and have the world's fanciest brunch at HOME. plus, stella cheeses are flavorful and combine old world craftsmanship with rich dairy heritage, dating back to 1923.
ok but onto the recipe! i created a little video to give you the run down on how to do things, but here's what you'll need:

2 eggs
2 t butter (i use salted)
a few handfuls of stella shaved parmesan cheese
about 1/4-1/3 cup of sauteed mushrooms
salt and pepper to taste

no, i'm not kidding you. that's IT. the real key is in the process.
1) whisk two eggs rapidly until light and fluffy. some people like to add a few teaspoons of milk or cream or water, but i don't think it's always necessary. do you, friends.
2) heat a small- to medium-sized (8 inches is ideal) nonstick pan over medium heat and melt your butter. you'll know it's ready when you drop in a drop of water and the butter hisses.
3) add in your eggs and tilt the pan so the eggs coat the entire base of the pan. gently lift the edges with a rubber spatula so it gets evenly coated.
4) leave it alone. seriously. don't touch it. don't scramble with it. just leave it be.
5) once it resembles a bright yellow pancake, it's time to flip it. using a rubber spatula, gently loosen the sides and flop that baby over.
6) add your stella cheese to one half, and then add in your sauteed mushrooms (or whatever else it is you put in your omelette).
7) gently fold your omelette in half and turn the heat off. let the pan remain on the heat to help melt your cheese and then slide the omelette out of your pan.
8) enjoy!
if you want to be fancy and serve your omelette like they do in brunch places, add a bit of leafy green to the side. but the stella cheese helps elevate this omelette on its own. the saltiness of the parmesan is the perfect addition to the earthiness of the mushrooms and creates an elegant breakfast treat.

and there you have it! from start to finish, it probably only takes about 7 minutes to make these omelettes, so know that the perfect, gourmet breakfast doesn't have to take you all morning. and now i'll be making omelettes for everyone at all times from here on out.

unlocking and understanding your 401k with blooom

you know what's not super fun to talk about? 401ks. but you know what we're going to talk about today?
i know, i know. but honestly, retirement plans are something i wish we had been forced to take a class about in college, because it would have been seriously helpful. when i got my first job out of college, i danced and celebrated a lot, but i was also thrown into a crazy unknown world where i had to start thinking about retirement. and like, when you're 22, retiring feels infinitely far away, so who cares? i invested as little as possible because hi i'd like to see my paycheck instead of throwing it into some weird account that is supposed to help me in a bajillion years. or so i thought.

thankfully, i've smartened up since i started working and put money into a retirement account regularly, but that doesn't mean any of it makes any more sense than it did seven years ago. am i investing enough money into it? will this REALLY sustain me once i want to retire? and is this kind of account even the right kind of account to be investing in? honestly, it all makes my head spin to think about. this is where blooom comes into the picture.
what is blooom? blooom (yes, three o's) manages your 401k at just $10 a month. why would you need a service to manage your 401k? uh, did you see all my questions above? yeah. wouldn't you rather focus on the important things in your life? like, you know, food. or vacation? or literally anything else?

blooom offers a free analysis that walks you through the complex world of 401ks. it provides easy to understand information about where your money is currently, and where it's going next. and, most importantly, blooom is using its technological advantages (it's actually a start-up out of kansas city founded by retirement experts!) to bring expert knowledge to the masses. because retiring shouldn't be something that's totally unattainable for average people, amirite?
Blooom 401k service
so instead of worrying about whether or not your 401k is going to sustain you when it comes time to retire, why not let blooom worry about that stuff so you can get on with life? you know, important things. like celebrating your dog's birthday. because OH YEAH today is toby's 8th birthday so YAY TOBY!

the best superfood snack break

i've been on the go lately (slash let's be honest, all the time). between working, training for a half marathon, and traveling, it feels like it's been nonstop for the last few months. it can be tough to find food i can bring with me that gives me all the nutrients i need, but shine organics has made it way easier.
Shine Organics
shine organics is way more than a snack. each pouch contains a special blend of organic, super ingredients, made to give you everything you need. and the best part, it features all the best ingredients — real fruits and vegetables, chia seeds, and nutritious superfoods. i spotted mine at my local target (right by the applesauce!), and since i started incorporating it into my routine, life hasn't been the same.

it makes the perfect snack to pull out before i head into a meeting thanks to its resealable top. if i can't finish everything before i head out, i'll just close it up and save the rest for later. it's also super convenient to snack on as i leave the gym and head back to my office. i can eat it with one hand and check my phone with the other and sometimes use my eyes to make sure i'm not walking into people. sometimes.
Shine Organics Pouch
plus i love how compact the pouches are! they fit into my purse, my backpack, my gym bag, even in my jean jacket pocket. portability is key (especially when it comes to snacks).

if you want to try them for yourself, i've got you a sweet coupon to make this super affordable healthy treat even more tempting! so head on over to your local target and throw them into your cart and then shop for a million other things you definitely need like five boxes of annie's mac and cheese, like i did.

don't judge.
Shine Organics at Target

on getting a divorce in your twenties

this post was hard. really, truly, unbearably hard. but i know i'm not alone in this, and i know it sucks. so here are just some personal bits of advice on going through a divorce. if you want to chat more, shoot me an email at hello@literally-everything.com. i'd love to chat.

it's probably not a surprise by now, but last year i went through a divorce. if you're new here: hi, i'm alex. i'm 29 and last year i got a divorce. getting a divorce is alienating enough, and going through it in your 20s feels extra hard. watching friends develop new relationships, get engaged, get married! and there i was, watching my relationship fall apart.

it wasn't easy, and i don't love dwelling on it, so this is probably the last time i'll talk about this on here. but i wanted to provide a bit of advice. because maybe you're going through it too. or your long-term relationship is also crumbling. i don't know. i just know i searched high and low to find women who went through the same thing to find proof that i'd be ok. that i made the right decision. that i wouldn't die under the weight of sadness, being alone and (to be completely honest) embarrassment. and i want you to know you won't either.

cooling off with my/mo mochi

the weather has been hot hot hot lately here in boston. temperatures keep rising, the humidity is intense, and i'm looking for any and all ways to cool off. thankfully, i have weekends back for the first time in two years, so i've been heading to the water to keep myself cool on saturdays and sundays. but the rest of the week? i'm letting myself indulge in a few sweet treats, including my new favorite, my/mo mochi.
My/Mo Mochi
i've loved mochi for a long time. i've grown up with mochi, and my nieces always love topping their froyo treats with mochi. basically, mochi is life. but up until now, i've always had to go to asian grocery stores in order to buy it. it worked out, but it wasn't ideal. but now i can buy my favorite sweet treat in local grocery stores.

so what's so great about my/mo mochi? it's hard to describe. i love the soft dough on the outside. it's traditional sweet rice dough that feels a little squishy but is also great for keeping the ice cream inside cold without melting in your fingers. it's the perfect handheld snack to pass around at a party. and the ice cream inside? perfectly smooth and exactly the kind of ice cream you're looking for on a hot day.
Cookies and Cream My/Mo Mochi
while i love all flavors of mochi, my absolute favorite is the cookies & cream my/mo mochi. it tastes just like my favorite ice cream, but is in a perfect size for a quick snack. plus at 110 calories per piece, i don't feel any guilt when i eat it! it satisfies my sweet tooth just right.
Cookies and Cream Mochi
have you tried mochi yet? make sure you check the my/mo mochi website to see where you can find some close to you!

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