When I look back on the month of August, honestly? I feel exhausted just thinking about it. In August 2020, I worked much harder than I had in months, as my business finally began to pick up again following the coronavirus collapse.
Admittedly, I neglected my blog a little bit during that time — but I also took on the incredible new project of rebranding my business. Yep, Millennial Pink Media, LLC is now Flow Media, LLC! As stressful as it was, I’m so grateful for the shift, because now I can focus my work on my favorite clients: therapists and other mental health professionals.
So yes, I was hard at work in August — but that doesn’t mean that August wasn’t full of so many wonderful things. From books to beauty, August gave me many opportunities to smile. Here, I’m sharing just a few of the things that brought me joy last month:
Like so many other millennials who were pre-teens in 2008, I preordered Midnight Sun over the summer. It finally arrived in August, but I only began to read it toward the end of the month, after I finished reading Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park. I have so many good things to say about this book, but of course, I have to acknowledge the bad ones, too: at times, it’s a little cringey and melodramatic; the relationship dynamic between Edward and Bella is dysfunctional at best. Still, I can’t help but love the Twilight Saga, if only because it represents such a significant piece of my childhood. Reading Midnight Sun as an adult with a new perspective on life has been especially interesting. I was always Team Jacob growing up, but as I read Midnight Sun and get a glimpse inside Edward’s head, I find myself empathizing with his character more and more. I’m planning to re-read the Twilight Saga once I finish Midnight Sun to see how I feel, but I have a feeling I’m going to come out Team Edward this time around. Has anyone else been feeling the same way?!
I’ve always loved a good “no-makeup” makeup look, but the appeal has increased exponentially since the onset of the pandemic. Nowadays, if I bother to put makeup on, it’s minimal eye makeup and maybe some concealer, if I’m feeling ambitious. Usually, this means I go without blush, because my bare face isn’t much of a canvas to work with. However, Glossier’s Cloud Paint — their cream blush formula — in Puff blends well into foundation-free skin, even if you’re ghostly pale like I am. It’s neither too thick nor too liquidy, and looks even more natural than my other go-to blush, NARS Orgasm. I fell in love with Cloud Paint after using a free sample I got from my last Glossier order, and am planning to purchase the full-size product ASAP.
If you have been around for awhile, you know that I am a diligent bullet journaler, especially for all things work-related. But because I create my bullet journal spreads on a weekly basis, I was running into limitations when it came to scheduling doctors’ appointments weeks or months into the future. Finally, I caved and decided I needed a good, old-fashioned planner in addition to my bullet journal. I used to be a Lilly Pulitzer planner fanatic, but since my bullet journal is now my primary planner (and Lilly Pulitzer no longer fits my personal style the way that it used to), I opted for this Meera Lee Patel planner from Barnes & Noble instead. The planner contains watercolor artwork made by hand, along with inspirational quotes to help you start every month on a positive note. Best of all, the size is compact — meaning that unlike my old Lilly planners, this one will actually fit in my purse without bending the spirals!
Long-time fans of my blog will also remember that I was originally misdiagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) before receiving my diagnosis of suspected endometriosis. Gut symptoms have always been one of the primary ways in which endo affects my life. I deal with painful endo belly, searing bowel movements, and cyclical constipation and diarrhea on a regular basis. My doctors have told me to try every probiotic under the sun, and none of them seemed to work for me. Then I discovered the brand Ora on my own. I knew I was going on antibiotics for bacterial vaginosis and wanted to take probiotics to replenish the lost bacteria in my gut. Because of the $35 price point, I was holding out on buying them — but in a moment of desperation, I made the purchase, and I’m so glad I did. Ora Organic Probiotics with Prebiotic Fiber help me have a regular once-a-day bowel movement, as opposed to a couple times per week or per day, depending on my symptoms. Combined with plenty of water and a balanced diet, these probiotics are the perfect solution for anyone who deals with constipation or diarrhea due to endo.
While I now eat (lactose-free) dairy again, I’m still gluten-free. When I was eating diary-free, I found that being on a restrictive diet that I never broke was causing a resurgence of my disordered eating habits. In addition to reincorporating lactose-free dairy, I’ve also gotten in the habit of challenging my food intolerances a handful of times per week, if only for mental health’s sake. For the most part, I have not had any negative health consequences as a result, save for some occasional bloating, but I have been enjoying tasting all the foods that our new home in Providence, RI has to offer. Our latest discovery is Seven Stars Bakery, which is just down the street from our house. They have traditional French and Austrian pastries, including classics like danishes and croissants, as well as some Viennese pastries I had never heard of before. I got a raspberry danish and cold brew with house-made vanilla syrup — yum! Next time you’re in New England, I highly recommend you stop at Seven Stars Bakery in Providence for a sweet-but-satisfying breakfast supporting a local business.