August 21, 2018


It's still Summer.

I saw a tree turning yellow a few weeks ago. But it's still Summer!

As long as I can still enjoy the outdoors and the sunshine comfortably, eat ice cream outdoors and wear shorts and sandals, it's still Summer.

When I wrote about Summer sunshine and enjoying my first real week of Summer a month or so ago, life seemed surreal and free. I had survived the grueling years of college, medical school and residency. It was the end of long work weeks, lack of sleep and endless stress. I had reached the light at the end of the tunnel and was "living the life". 

But as Summer went on, it was different than I expected. Life got busier than I had anticipated and my life was still scheduled to the seconds. It was filled with more dark valleys than sunny mountains.  I felt pressure from all directions of life. My future was still up in the air. It was unsettling and it spiraled into an anxiety in a world of feeling like I was not enough.

After struggling with this reality, I decided to set aside pockets of stillness in my nonstop days to allow myself to address the issues. As I look back at my journal this past month, there is a theme of letting go of my fears, trusting God and His good plans for me, and choosing thankfulness in all circumstances. Since embracing these lessons and intentionally applying them to my every day, I've had more sunny days and true joy.

There is still a lot of work to be done before these lessons become ingrained in my life like breathing. But God is so gracious and truly Jehovah-Jireh, my Provider. Praying that stillness becomes a habit.

One pocket of stillness was this past weekend. So thankful I got to spend a slow(ish) weekend with my family. (Read this Instagram post for the drama of how it all started.) It forced me to take the time to rest and limit my never-ending to-do lists. And I always cherish time with my family since we are now spread across the country. My sister and I visited a beautiful gardening shop since we love admiring pretty plants and flowers. I wore this beautiful floral maxi wrap dress & fit right in! It was a sweet pocket of stillness I got to share with her!

Here's to a still summer and a still life. How do you fit stillness in your life? 

Dress: c/o SheIn
Bag: 31Bits
Earrings: BaubleBar (sold out) {Similar}

August 14, 2018


Versatility is something many put on a pedestal and desire. Yes, it's great to have many gifts and talents and be useful in many places and positions in life. But it's also not exactly the easiest trait to have.

You might think I'm crazy for saying that. But it's coming from someone who is more of a generalist than a specialist. Please, don't get me wrong. I'm not complaining at all about the gifts God has blessed me with, but I wanted to share my perspective in this area as a generalist. I've struggled with feeling lost and out of place a lot over the years; until recently, I haven't been able to pinpoint why I felt that way.

If you're new here, you may not know that blogging is a side hustle that I started during medical school just for fun to stretch my creative muscles. I've been blessed with opportunities that have encouraged me to keep it up during residency to now. And through it, I've discovered a love for creating content, photography and a deeper love for style and adventure. I'm also a classically trained musician and have a degree in violin performance. Life has also taken me to incredible places in the music world and I am so thankful for the opportunities that have exposed me to the world outside of classical music.

Because these areas of life rarely overlap, I often feel pulled in a million directions. This leads to being stretched too thin, overwhelmed and exhausted. But the part that is the hardest is that it can easily cause me to lose sight of my ultimate goals in life.

So now I've been purposely setting aside time at least monthly or whenever I feel off to reset and make sure that my direction is aligned with my goals. Most of all, I want to make sure that every moment of my life is glorifying God, not myself and my pride.

And back to the positives. I'm beyond thankful for all these gifts and the opportunities I've had. The best part of it all is that God has blessed me with incredible friendships in all of these areas of life. I wouldn't trade any of it for the world. Every person has touched my life, inspired me, encouraged me and spurred me on to be a better version of myself.

Another area where versatility is extremely helpful is in clothing. When I shop, I look for the different ways I can style each piece. Can the piece of clothing be dressed up or down easily? Can the top be tucked into a skirt without looking frumpy? Can the piece be transitioned throughout every or most Seasons of the year?

I love this fun Shein top . It's a beautiful color that can be worn throughout the year. The waist is fitted so it tucks into a high-waisted skirt easily. And it can be dressed up or down easily to transition from daytime to nighttime. I'm sharing how I wore it 3 ways below! Which is your favorite?

Casual: Pair the top with jean shorts for an easy weekend look

Dinner: Tuck the top into a high-waisted skirt and lose the belt for this dinner date night look

Night out: Pair the top with skinny jeans and heels for a night out grabbing drinks with your girls

Top: c/o SheIn
Skirt: Loft (old) {Similar}
White jeans: Anthropologie (old) {Similar}

July 16, 2018


Oh, sweet sweet summer. 

After our dreary winters, I love watching the earth spring to life. The rain nourishes the earth, the sun shine longer & life blooms.

Summer brings up childhood memories of gardening with my parents, berry picking, weekend fishing and camping trips with family friends, adventures around the world, summer camp, etc. It is a season of growth. 

So many of those memories were formative and helped me become the woman I am today. Especially when I think back to those trips to developing countries that opened my eyes to injustices around the world, to different cultures, etc. And when I remember those important lessons from church summer camp and how I learned to make my faith in God my own.

Summer is a fruitful season, literally and figuratively. Berry, cherry and peach season are my favorites. During cherry season, I scored rainier cherries at the farmers market. And the farm's cherry trees definitely bore sweet cherries!

My hope is that the fruit I bear is sweet; that in everything I do in my life is filled with love, joy, kindness, patience, goodness, faithfulness and glorifies the Lord.

Photography: Cranberry Tantrums

Dress: c/o SheIn
Bag: 31 Bits
Earrings: Ann Taylor (old) {Similar | Similar}

July 12, 2018


If you've heard that Chicagoans live for the summer, you've heard correctly.

This is the first summer out of my 7 years in Chicago that I've had to truly enjoy Chicago's sunny days and it's been bliss. I went to the farmer's market for the first time, made it to the beach before the end of summer and my balcony garden is thriving because I have time to give it TLC. 

The extra sunshine in my life has given me so much more joy in the everyday. In the past summers of medical school and residency, I didn't know what I was missing. But I hope to never miss these sunny summer days ever again!

I love this sunny yellow dress and it makes me smile. And at its price, it's a steal! I look forward to spending more summer morning walks, brunch and ice cream dates with friends and farmer's market visits in this dress.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Cranberry Tantrums

Dress: c/o SheIn
Earrings: Ann Taylor
Bag: 31 Bits
Sunglasses: Loft {sold out} {Similar | Similar}

June 19, 2018


Any perfectionists out there?

I will fully admit to it. I've always been a perfectionist, and being one, it's so easy to get bogged down with the smallest imperfect details of myself. Oftentimes, these imperfections also make me feel undesirable and as if I have to prove myself more to deserve to be loved. But I am so thankful that those thoughts and feelings are so far from the truth!

We are all human -- imperfect and broken people. We make mistakes, we say or do the wrong things, we think bad things about others, etc. If we had to earn grace or salvation for all our sins, we would never be good enough to earn it. But there's good news and sweet truth!

The truth is that though we can never be good enough to be saved, God has made a way for us through Jesus. We don't have to earn God's grace. It's there, extended to us, free for the taking. It cost Jesus' life, but God loves us so much that He was willing to make that sacrifice for us.

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." -- 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

I love these verses. It's a beautiful picture of God's love for us. He's perfect, mighty and powerful, and yet, He wants us to come to Him in our brokenness and surrender our imperfections to Him. It's not easy and can feel vulnerable. But when we surrender it all to Him, take up our cross and follow Him, we can fully experience His perfect strength, His sweet truth and His extravagant Love for us.


Putting together this sweet look was a blast from the past. I thought I'd play on the 50s housewife look with this fun 50s style dress from SheIn. While externally perfectly put together and tied up with a bow, there's a lot of brokenness going on internally. A necessary reminder in the day and age of social media. No one is perfect. We're all in need of a whole lot of love, grace and kindness! I also included some fun details including a chocolate bar clutch to add some sweetness.

Dress: c/o SheIn
Clutch: Kate Spade (Old) {Similar}
Heels: DSW (Sold Out) {Similar}
Scarf: Ann Taylor {Similar}

June 11, 2018


So many life changes lately! Hence the lack of time to write here and why I've been more intentional about unplugging and spending time with friends and family. I graduated from residency, I'm looking for my first real-world job, more friends are getting married, childhood friends are having kids, friends are moving away, etc.

At the most recent wedding I attended, my friend got married in a garden. It's actually my favorite place in Chicago, a hidden gem. When it came to deciding what to wear, my head went straight to a floral dress. It makes the most sense for a garden wedding! And my instant choice was this beautiful flowy SheIn floral maxi with fun asymmetric sleeves. I love the muted pastel colors, the print mix and how it makes the perfect dancing dress!

Dress: c/o SheIn
Bag: c/o WhoWhatWear
Earrings: Baublebar {Similar}

May 10, 2018


The transition from Winter to Spring and Summer can sometimes be awkward in the midwest as the weather can never make up its mind. This is why I gravitate often towards maxi dresses & jean jackets. Maxis are easy to transition from day to night. And they offer the airiness for warmer days and the coverage needed in case the weather turns cooler in the evenings.

I love wearing maxis in bright colors and fun prints in the Spring and Summer months. They bring extra joy and are the focal point to your outfit, so you really only need to add simpler accessories. But if you want to be extra, you can always add fun heels, bags and statement jewelry.

Lately, I've been obsessed with this easy breezy floral maxi dress. It fits looser, so it's great for casual days but can be dressed up with heels and statement earrings. Can you believe it's only $25? It's such a steal for the quality and style! How would you style this dress?

Dress: c/o SheIn
Jacket: Old Navy
Heels: Ann Taylor 
Earrings: BaubleBar (sold out) {Similar}
Sunnies: Old Navy

April 26, 2018


Chicago, Spring looks crazy beautiful on you! There's something about this weather that puts an extra spring and sparkle in my step. I can't explain it. The city hasn't bloomed quite yet, but I've broken out my open-toed shoes and have been wearing dresses and skirts without tights or leggings.

My friends and I were shopping together and it was so fun to add some color to their wardrobe. That is always my goal when styling my friends who wear neutrals all day, every day. Adding color and sparkle and prints to their repertoire makes me so happy!

When my sister got this multicolored, striped and sequined skirt for me, I was obsessed and itching to wear it. So please don't judge me if it's worn often. It deserves to be seen.

I was lucky to get a chance to wear the skirt during my Miami girls weekend getaway earlier this year already. And these photos capture the true joy I feel when I wear it. Is there a piece in your Spring wardrobe that makes you do a happy dance?

PHOTOGRAPHY: Kaleena Thompson

Skirt: Anthropologie (Sold Out) {Similar | Similar}
Top: Kate Spade (Old) {Similar | Similar}
Heels: DSW (Sold Out) {Similar | Similar}
Bag: 31Bits
Earrings: Loft (Sold Out) {Similar | Similar}
Rings: 31Bits

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