Category Archives: Anything & Everything

Apartment Must Haves: Kitchen & Cleaning Necessities Edition

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Apartment Must Haves: Kitchen & Cleaning Necessities Edition

Hi! So, the first time I went grocery shopping, I was so focused on stocking up on ALL of the food that I forgot the sage words of my client’s mom to remember about cleaning supplies and things like garbage bags, plastic wrap, etc. Of course, I remembered this advice as soon as I got back to my apartment and had to turn around and go back to pick up things like zip lock baggies, sponges, and the like. And, we can’t forget about laundry detergent and dish soap! Here are just a few of my necessities when it comes to cleaning:

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It’s so easy to get wrapped up in all of the big must haves of moving that the little things like your cleaning supplies go unnoticed. Stocking up on these things is important and, unless you’re deep cleaning your place every day, they should last you for a good long while.

On that note, it’s a great idea to invest in a nice trash can. One with a flip up lid, preferably! You don’t want your garbage stinking up the place so do be sure to grab some high quality bags to line your bin with, too. I purchased a stainless steel one from Target and I have yet to have any issues with garbage odors. And, the steel makes it easy to clean in case of spills.

The next thing that I would like to purchase when it comes to cleaning is a Swiffer WetJet for my hardwood and tile floors in the apartment, because those are starting to look a little rough. And, I suppose a vacuum will come in handy, too. But, for now, the carpeted rooms aren’t frequented enough for that to be completely necessary just yet. Talk about adulthood, amiright?!

What are some cleaning necessities that you recommend? How do you keep your place fresh and clean? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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Make It Work: 3 Things To Note When House Hunting With Your Spouse

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Make It Work: 3 Things To Note When House Hunting With Your Spouse

Sometimes, house hunting is fun. But most of the time, it’s such a pain in the neck. What makes it particularly stressful is when you and your spouse don’t see eye to eye on what you want your next home to be. Perhaps you want a big house just outside the city, but your partner prefers a small condo unit at the heart of the central business district. These small differences can blow up into big arguments, which could delay your move. So, what do you do when you can’t agree with your spouse in your house hunting? Take these steps:

Create your own home essentials list:

Since fights almost always come from what each of you thinks your family house should be, this is the first thing you should address. Here, the best approach is to make a list of your wants and needs in a home – separately. You want to do this independently so that at the end of the exercise, you’ll see the things you share in common. These similarities validate that these features are indeed important to you. But at the same time, don’t neglect the differences. Those are points for discussion. Make your case as to why these things should be in your home. Negotiate and be patient in expressing your concerns. But more importantly, listen. If your spouse has a point, be willing to concede.

Consider your budget:

All discussions should be framed in the context of how much house you can afford. When both of you have this perspective in approaching matters, it will be far easier to compromise. Those pretty countertops or furniture will be easier to resist. Now, if you don’t have a financial game plan yet, sit down and decide on it immediately before hitting the property market. Compare different quotes from lending agencies. When doing the math, make sure that your monthly payments on mortgage won’t take more than 25% of your take-home pay. Otherwise, you’ll be house poor in the next months. Once you’re able to settle on a budget already, stick to it. Inform your real estate agent about it. You may want to include this house and lot for sale in Cavite, which might fit your budget.

Cease and desist:

If you find yourself getting into a big fight over your next house, it’s wise to take a step back from the conversation or the house hunting process altogether. A nice home isn’t worth it if it’s going to split you up in the end. So give yourself a week break. No house-related matters over dinner. No budget-related talks on your dates. Use that time of ‘silence’ to ponder about your house-buying decisions separately. Your goal is to have a fresh, renewed mind once the break is and you resume the talk. Hopefully, that time of meditation will make you more understanding of each other and your priorities.

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Have you been struggling with the home search because of your couple fights? Fight no more. Prioritize your relationship through and through and the house will come when the time is right.

Fall Guest Bloggers Wanted!

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Fall Guest Bloggers Wanted!

Hellooo everyone! I know, I know, it’s only the beginning of August BUT that doesn’t mean that we can’t start thinking about fall! Or, at least, I can start thinking about fall, because I have been since summer began, lol. I am an autumn girl through and through – the weather, clothes, activities, holidays, and the food all speak to me on a spiritual level and I know that I am not the only one.

So, if you are a lover of all things fall and would like to create a blog post for lifewithlilred and the one hundred and eighty plus countries reading me, then please get in touch at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com ! From back to school fashion, hearty recipes, MOTDs inspired by fall colors, and the best autumn activities – I want it all. Seriously, I want your posts and all of the aforementioned in my life. If you’re interested, shoot me an email and let’s get this fall guest bloggers series started! Much love. -Sarah

That’s So Fetch

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That’s So Fetch

Hello!! Just a quick show of hands: How many people like Lil Red’s looks enough to shop them?!

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If the answer is yes, then do let me know. Becauuuuuse, I have the opportunity to begin working with an affiliate company that will give me a percentage of the cut if I have readers that purchase clothing and beauty products similar to what yours truly is rocking. But, the trick is that I would need to update my blog to a business plan, which would cost me way more per year. So, I only want to do it if I’m one hundred percent sure that my darlings will participate. Let your girl know!

Are you a member of any affiliate programs? What are your experiences with them? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: Rebloggy

Activities To Help You Unwind After Your Wedding Day

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Activities To Help You Unwind After Your Wedding Day

Weddings are truly busy and stressful, considering what the couple has to go through just to make sure that one special day goes smoothly. But after all that is done and the vows have been accepted, you as a couple deserve to have your own time and moments together to enjoy the finer things in life as husband and wife. Sure, there’s the mandatory honeymoon, but there’s much more you can do that will surely help your mind and body recover from all the stress and strain of wedding preparations:

Relax and Unwind:

It goes without saying that you need to rest your body first since you have a whole life ahead of you. All that time and effort looking for suppliers and managing the event to make sure that it all goes well can give you a lot of stress. After the wedding is your opportunity to enjoy your well-deserved relaxation time.

There are many possibilities on what you can do, such as get a facial treatment in Manila, go to a beach or resort, or go enjoy the beauty of nature by hiking or mountain climbing. These will surely help you to relax and enjoy quality time with your new spouse.

Reap the Benefits:

One of the things that you’ll get from your wedding is gifts and lots of them. These presents are oftentimes given to help the bride and groom with their start on married life. Home appliances are common choices and are very helpful because you won’t need to go shopping for them.

Some people also gift their newly married friends and relatives with discount vouchers or tickets for them to use on a cruise or a fancy restaurant. Don’t hesitate to use them, especially if they have expiration dates. These presents are meant for you to enjoy and use to your advantage as the married life will present you with new challenges every single day.

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Go on Get-Togethers:

You’ve only just accomplished a monumental event in your life that was full of hectic plans and schedules, so you may think that it’s best not to go out for a while. However, your family and friends are still part of your life, and you’ll need all the help you can get from them. The occasional get-together will be good for letting them know how well you’re doing after the nuptials as well as strengthen the bond between in-laws. You can do it either at home or in places such as restaurants or hotels.

Living the married life will surely put a lot on your plate, may it be good or bad. But what’s important is for you to focus on what’s positive and expect to face the bad times together with your partner. Your relationship doesn’t end once the wedding day is over; instead, it’s the start of a lifelong journey with the best partner in life you’ll ever have. So, take the time to relish that moment and unwind!

Duolingo Update

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Duolingo Update

Yo! It has been a while since I gave an update on my language learning festivities, so here we are. This past month, I have added Czech to my trifecta of languages that I have been working on with French, Spanish, and Italian. And, let me tell you, it has been about a bitch. I decided to start Czech because of my halfsies heritage with my mom being one hundred percent Czechoslovakian. And, I plan on starting German in another month or so as my dad is almost one hundred percent in his nationality.

Being fluent in French made Spanish and Italian fairly easy to work on, since the Romance languages are pretty similar. I also took Spanish from kindergarten to eighth grade and some of that (But not much!) is definitely coming back. Italian has proven to be more challenging than I thought it would be, but I finally think I am getting a better grip on it after over three months of working on it.

The real difficulty lies in Czech because it sounds SO different than any of the other languages that I am familiar with. None of the words in Czech sound anything like English, which is so helpful in my Romance languages because you can make an educated guess even if it sounds vaguely like something you have heard before. I went into Czech blind or, deaf, I should say because aside from a few random words I’ve heard from my mom and grandma, I’ve never even heard it spoken before.

But, Lil Red never backs down from a challenge and I plan to continue working hard on Czech as well as the other three languages in my arsenal. In the meantime, does anyone have any tips on learning a new language? Czech in specific? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Vicious Vengeance: Examining Vindictive Exes In Pop Culture

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Vicious Vengeance: Examining Vindictive Exes In Pop Culture

The narrative of the crazy ex-girlfriend is so prevalent that the CW actually made a TV show about it. Other portrayals aren’t as nuanced as Rachel Bloom’s sitcom, which actually attempts to bring a feminist twist to a mostly misogynistic plot device. But a good “crazy ex” narrative can almost be as entertaining as romantic buzz kill movies. So let’s examine examples of crazy ex-girlfriends in popular culture and find what makes them tick. Be careful, hell’s got nothing on these women!

The Woman in “Bust Your Windows”

Jazmine Sullivan released a hit song “Bust Your Windows” in 2008; a cover by Glee a few years later increased its popularity. In the song, an unnamed woman dishes out vengeance when she sees her lover in bed with another woman. But she doesn’t punish him directly. As the title says, she busts the windows of his car. Oof, better find a shop that fixes car windows. As an added bonus, she carves her initials on it with a crowbar. Double oof. Maybe it’s time for an upgrade, unnamed philanderer?

But as lyrics and Sullivan’s crooning voice reveal, she knows that doing so is futile. She’s only committing vandalism to make the man suffer, and that his pain will only be a small echo of the pain he caused her. The lyrics go on to explain that the woman wants this to be a lesson to the man that he can’t treat women that way. As far as “crazy ex” activities go, not unreasonable but also inadvisable to do in the real world, only, whoops, Jazmine admitted in 2016 that she did bust an ex’s windows. *Happens to the best of us!*

Alex Forrest from “Fatal Attraction”

Glenn Close’s performance as Alex was nominated by the Academy Awards. Glenn Close deserves praise for the amount of research and preparation she did to perform that well, but the actress disagrees how the writers treated Alex. Close explains she portrayed Alex as clearly mentally disturbed, a woman who needed help to break free from her obsessive devotion to her married lover. She wanted to play a tragic character whose dark past is the cause of her disturbance.

But the studio and the test audiences both wanted Alex to meet a grisly end and to ensure it, they turned her into THE crazy ex, attacking her lover’s family with a knife and boiling their pet rabbit. Instead of the cheating man getting punished, the mentally ill woman he took advantage of bites it, instead. Before you ask, yes, “Fatal Attraction” was written by a man.

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Amy Elliot Dunne from “Gone Girl”

Gillian Flynn’s thriller novel “Gone Girl” and the film adaptation that stars Rosamund Pike in the titular role caused a lot of debate as to whether or not it’s a feminist narrative. In the story, Amy Dunne is a brilliant woman who is scorned by her underachieving but charming husband. To exact her revenge, Amy frames her husband for her murder. She also expounds on what she calls “Cool Girls.” According to Amy, and by extension Flynn, women change themselves to be the “cool girl” that pleases their man in every way.

Amy changed a lot about her and maintained her body to keep her husband interested. But he doesn’t live up to his end, neglecting her needs and cheating on her. But the way she enacts her vengeance is way too brutal. Not only does she lie about assault and fake a pregnancy, she also murders someone to further her plans.

What makes Amy a feminist character is that she is absolutely right about the “Cool Girl” dynamic. She’s also a strong, intellectual woman who knows her worth and fights for what she believes is hers. But she is a terrible, manipulative, murderous person. You can’t get a more complex portrayal of female vengeance than Amy Elliot Dunne.

Inspiring or a warning? The only person who can decide whether these women should be looked up to or locked up is yourself, but before you make your judgment, remember that there is a story behind everything. And hopefully, you’ll speak up the next time you hear someone use the phrase “crazy ex.” Who knows, you might be saving the windows of their car!