Empty Shell

Before you knew your Father’s love for you, you sought love in all the wrong places. You sought to be seen and recognized by your peers in your classes but you only existed as a wallflower in the shadows, someone to be relied on to get the work done. People didn’t strike up conversations to get to know you – you did it to get any semblance of normal. You can’t control being born with a face that at its natural rest looks terrifying to the eyes of the passerbys, but they’ve told you over and over again to adjust your body language and smile to be more friendly, more approachable. You did it when you tried, but it wasn’t natural, especially not in the midst of the sadness.

The 19 year old you placed too much value on determining love from being included in social events and was heartbroken each time the fraternities on campus celebrated National Women’s Day by passing out carnations. The you now, hates carnations, for they remind you of the number of times that even though you are female and old enough to be considered a woman in societal standards, you weren’t pretty enough or dolled up enough to be noticed and given a flower. You’d listen to the pledges and the brothers recite their creed on why they were passing out those carnations, wondering if they would notice you to the side and thank you for existing. You cried in your senior year when you finally received a carnation but then you took it and trashed it because it brought up so many regrets of why you never loved yourself.

The you right now cries for the lostness of your 19 year old self, never knowing how to love you as you were and cries harder now thinking of the fact that the current you truly isn’t so different from the 19 year old you. You still don’t know how to love yourself and you get noticed now, but it’s a hollow feeling. You wear makeup, just enough everyday to be somewhat noticed and to not fall back into the wallpaper but you still don’t truly love yourself. You’ve been forgiven, and you know that in the depths of your insecurities, your Father loves you through it all. 

Tuesday Review – W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center

Hello Wonderlanders!

Today’s review is going to be about a place that is near and dear to my heart.

I entered university/college a very sheltered child and was actually bullied by my roommate and some floor mates my first year in the dorms.  I was lucky to find a club and an organization which promoted an interest of mine and from there, I developed lots of friendships and a support system which stands to this day.

I’ve loved horses since before I really knew what they were.  I was the kid screaming bloody murder at the San Deigo Zoo because Mommy wouldn’t let me take the Shetland Pony home.  (I was 5, I get a free pass on that.)  And anytime after that pony, I just wanted to pet the horse or ride it and I was given chances for it with my Dad’s colleague’s daughters whom owned their own horses.  It was from the five siblings that I first got a glimpse of what a relationship between a horse and a person could be like and I was intrigued.  But then for many years, I didn’t get a chance to visit the horses or the family and I pushed it to the back of my head until college.

My school has a wonderful history tied to the Arabian horse breed in the United States.  The land that Cal Poly Pomona was built on was originally owned by W. K. Kellogg, the cereal magnate.  That ranch and its land was later donated to the University of California, but was used as a remount depot during World War II.  After acquiring the land, in 1949 the W. K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan then deeded the land to the state of California, stipulating that the land had to be used for education purposes and the Arabian breeding program had to be continued along with the traditional Sunday Shows.  Eventually, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona was established and an equine sciences program was created as well.  To this day, students are a big part of the Arabian Horse Center, through participation in clubs, volunteering, and work, or any combination of the three.

The Arabian Horse Center not only serves as a place for students to participate and learn but also to educate the public as to the versatility, grace, beauty, and endurance of the Arabian breed.  The W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center is open all week from 8am-5pm for non-guided tours of the stables.  If you’re ever in the area, especially around the first Sunday of the month from October through May, you should stop by to tour the stables.  If you’re in the area on the first Sunday of the month, stop by for the Sunday Horse Show which was established back in W. K. Kellogg’s time.  The Show starts at 2pm and lasts for about an hour or more and there is much to be learned and seen.  Admission is between $4-$5 and the show is often a family favorite, but fun for all ages.

I joined the Equestrian Drill Team at the Arabian Horse Center my freshman year without any horse experience.  Through the club and volunteering at the Horse Center, I learned a lot about horses from equitation to breeding to showing to what it takes to run a horse farm.  I was promoted to treasurer my sophomore year, then president of the club for both junior and senior year.  I’ve worked at the Horse Center part-time since junior year.  I’ve even ridden in some Sunday Horse Shows and I also announce for the Show some Sundays.  I’ve seen three live foalings through my participation with Foal Watch at the Horse Center, and watched my first foal enter training.  These were things I never thought I would be able to do.

CP Magnitude (My first foal, born in 2012, photo circa 2012.)  Photo Credit: W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center

CP Magnitude (My first foal, born in 2012, photo circa 2012.) Photo Credit: W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center

Through the opportunities the amazing staff at the Arabian Horse Center provided me with, I’ve grown as a person.  Through the people I’ve met at the Horse Center, I’ve grown as a friend.  There are so many opportunities for leadership, responsibility and friendship there.  If you’re looking for a school with an opportunity to work with horses, consider Cal Poly Pomona.  If you want to gain experience for working in the equine industry, the Horse Center has ample opportunities as well. To learn more about the W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Center, please visit their site at www.wkkelloggarabianhorsecenter.com/

If you ever stop by for a Sunday Show, feel free to drop me a note – I’d love to meet you!

Until Next Time,

Allys

*All opinions shared are solely my own, and I am not paid or rewarded for endorsing this program.  If you liked the content you read here, please check out my other posts and subscribe!*

Tuesday Review – Birchbox

Hello Wonderlanders!

For the longest time, I wasn’t interested in beauty products beyond every day hygiene necessities.  Then I hit a phase in my life where I wanted self-improvement, and to me, it meant the whole package, mental and physical.  I started paying more attention to the way I was presenting myself, and that lead to my dabbling in makeup and beauty products and a perm.  In my quest for more knowledge, I started to read blogs about beauty and a good lifestyle in general and I stumbled on Kayla Aimee’s blog – Kayla Aimee Writes.  She’s so darn humorous and down to earth and full of goodness, but that’s for another day.  One of the things she had discussed and reviewed was a subscription service called Birchbox.

I was intrigued.  What was this magical subscription for only $10 a month?  Well, it features 5 personalized beauty samples a month for you for only $10 with free shipping. There are two subscription boxes – men’s and women’s.  You can get one for yourself, and one for your sibling or significant other and enjoy the goodies together!

When you join the subscription, you can either pay $10 a month, or $110 for a whole year.  For women, you create a profile by answering a survey about what beauty looks you like, what skin type and hair type you have as well as some other ones that I don’t remember off the top of my head.  I’m sure that the men’s section has a similar survey too.  This is how Birchbox customizes the subscription box for you.

I’m a college student on the college student budget and $10 for beauty product samples that I’d normally never try or even heard off really isn’t bad.  So far, I’ve received two boxes, November and December, and I’ve really liked the products I received.  I will post up about them later separately so I don’t overwhelm you guys as I am still playing catch-up to my weekday prompts. I do plan on posting a monthly review of my Birchbox samples starting in January.

My very first Birchbox(s)!  November and December 2014

My very first Birchbox(s)! Aren’t they pretty and full of mystery?November and December 2014

You may ask me how can I review something that I’ve only had for 2 months, but let me tell you, I know straight off when I have a physical item with me whether I will like it or hate it.  I liked the Birchbox subscription in case you can’t tell.  Yes, there were some items that I don’t need.  Or wouldn’t use normally for that matter, but it was still nice to be given a chance to try it out.  Plus, by reviewing the items you’ve received, you could earn up to 50 Birchbox points (their reward system) which equals $5 to spend in their shop.  Birchbox has full sized products of the samples you receive and more in their shop, and more ways to earn points on their site. I will be providing my referral link below – I earn 50 points anytime someone purchases their Birchbox subscription.  Please feel free to look through the site and see other blog posts across the web for reviews of their products and customer service.  So far I haven’t heard or read anything about bad customer service with Birchbox, but if anything changes, I’ll be sure to let you know.

I am not paid or given extra benefits by Birchbox for providing this review of their service.  All opinions stated are solely my own and I am imply sharing my opinion of the things I’ve used or come across that I find useful or not useful.  What you decide to do with the products in my review or opinions is not my responsibility.

If you liked this post and would enjoy similar content in the future, feel free to subscribe!  I will not send spam, and you’ll only receive notifications of when I post.

As always, I would love to hear your feedback – questions, comments, and concerns, so comment below and I will respond as soon as I can!

Referral Links:

Kayla Aimee Writes (http://kaylaaimee.com/) – A wonderful Southern lady shares her heartfelt adventures with her darling toddler

Birchbox Referral (https://www.birchbox.com/invite/allysinwonderland)

Mani Monday – The Time We Used a Stamp Kit

Hello Wonderlanders!

I do sincerely apologize for the delay in this post.  I did warn you that I’d be bad at getting things started and sticking to it, but at least I’m getting this post up!  Today, I wanted to share with you a kit that I enjoyed using for fine nail art.  Usually when I do my nails, I stick to easy things like one basic color.

This is a throwback to June 2013 when I was taking summer classes with my friend Crystale and we were bored.  She told me about this nail stamping kit that she had invested in to do her nails with and I wanted to try it.  We ended up at her parent’s home and having a manicure party which resulted in the pictures below.

My right hand.  Butterflies and flowers design in silver and deep blue.

My right hand. Butterflies and flowers design in silver and deep blue.

I have a really hard time making decisions regarding myself.  So I drove Crystale nuts with my indecision on what colors I wanted.  It then turned into whether I should do blue or silver, and her mom cut in, suggesting I just did both.  That suggestion was definitely worth it.  I love cool colors and the metallic silver just really complimented the coloring as well.

The first shot of my left hand - notice the fine lines of the stamping on both the butterfly and flowers.

The first shot of my left hand – notice the fine lines of the stamping on both the butterfly and flowers.

I do apologize for the crappy photos – they were taken on my iTouch 4th generation which doesn’t have a great camera.  I think that the detailed art of the stamps are still visible though.

My left hand has the reverse color motif of my right hand.

My left hand has the reverse color motif of my right hand.

The stamping process went a little like this:

✻ Paint the nail with your base coat, then your base color. Allow each to dry completely before layers.

✻ Select stamp image and color from selection. Paint the image selected on the image plate.

✻ Scrape off excess paint, then use the rubber stamper and gently roll it over the painted image from the plate.

✻ Align with nail and gently but firmly roll the rubber stamper across the nail.  Image should transfer without smudging if you do it fast enough.

✻ Wait for stamp image to dry before applying top coat.  Be deliberate with the top coat as sustained movements may cause stamp image to smear.

✻  Admire nails.  Repeat from the third step on as many fingers and toes as you’d like!

It was a little tedious getting the nails done, but they turned out so well with patience. I found a link with a tutorial directly from Konad (don’t mind the calypso-esque music and slow talking), it shows what I described above so much better.

I personally don’t have this kit, but I love doing my nails with Crystale because there are lots of fun designs to choose from and so many color combinations possible.  However, I will note that the stamping kit did not come cheap for her.  She had gotten a great deal from Sam’s Club when she purchased it a few years ago.  Looking at the website today, image plates alone are $6 and the special nail polish is about $4 a bottle.  Depending on the frequency of your manicures and how elaborate you like them to be, the Konad stamping nail art kit may be a worthy investment.  They are having a 50% overall store discount sale at the moment for a limited amount of time.  This is a link to their direct website: http://www.konadnailart.com/index.html

If you liked this post and would enjoy similar content in the future, feel free to subscribe!  I will not send spam, and you’ll only receive notifications of when I post.  As always, I would love to hear your feedback – questions, comments, and concerns, so comment below and I will respond as soon as I can!

I am not a pro at manicures, nor do I get paid to endorse a product.  I am simply sharing my opinion of the things I’ve used or come across that I find useful or not useful.  What you decide to do with the products in my review or opinions is not my responsibility.

XOXO

Allys