Tag Archives: duolingo

One Year Duolingo Streak!

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One Year Duolingo Streak!

Hi! This has been a year of very exciting milestones for yours truly. I recently achieved a 1,000 day streak of writing in a row on lifewithlilred and, today, I have reached one full year of daily practice on Duolingo! Every day, I have been working on my French, Spanish, Italian, Czech, and German and I am amazed at the progress that I have made in all of them. If you can’t tell, I am a woman who thrives with a routine and it is so exciting to see my hard work continue to pay off.

Because I have six years of experience of being taught French in high school and college, it will always be my best language in terms of speaking, reading, and comprehension. Unfortunately, I’m not really sure how speaking my other four languages would go because I haven’t had the opportunity to interact with anyone who speaks them – especially in COVID times because Johnny and I haven’t been able to travel for our honeymoon like we wanted.

That’s not to say that I haven’t noticed big improvements, though. I am always tickled when Johnny and I are watching a TV show or movie and one of my five languages is being spoken. More often than not, I can get the basic gist of what is being said and it makes me feel very proud of myself. Now, the next challenge will be figuring out which language to start learning next!

For the longest time, I have answered the “What would your super power be?” question with being fluent in every language. It has been a time consuming task to achieve this without being bitten by a radioactive spider but learning on Duolingo every day brings me one step closer to that dream. 🙂

Which language should I learn next? Which languages can you speak? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

A Force Of Habit

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A Force Of Habit

Hello! In case you haven’t realized by now, I am the type of gal who loves organizing, planning, check lists, and schedules. I thrive on structure. Meanwhile, Johnny is definitely more spontaneous so the combination balances out nicely! I run two businesses, which means that my days need to run like a fine tuned machine so that I can get everything done with time to relax in the evening.

While it takes an average of sixty-six days for a person to form a new habit, it probably takes me a week or less because I take a lot of pleasure in penciling things into my schedule. There is also nothing better than a super long streak of doing something daily! There are a handful of habits that I have formed that I truly don’t think I could live without now. In fact, it pains me to think of not doing the following every day:

Skin Care Routine:

My days start and end with a skin care routine that I have customized to best fit my skin type. With the stresses that sometimes come with being self employed, self care is extremely important to me. Sometimes, this takes form in trying out a new face mask but it mostly means using products on my face and body that make me feel good. This includes using a delicious smelling body wash from Bath & Body Works, a refreshing gel moisturizer, Vitamin C serum, and body lotion every day.

Writing:

Once I have completed my morning hygiene routine, it is time to write! My fast approaching 1,000 post streak of daily writing would probably not be possible if I didn’t get up extra early every day to complete this task before I need to leave for work. While I always enjoy adding new things to my schedule, I like checking them off of my mental to do list even more! I feel amazing every time I finish a new blog post and my countdown gets one day closer to 1,000.

Practice Learning Languages:

Other than reading, learning new languages is one of my favorite hobbies. I am currently on a three hundred day streak on Duolingo for practicing French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech every day. Whenever I get asked what I would want my super power to be if I had one, I always reply with being fluent in every language in the world. Unfortunately, I am not going to get bit by a super learned spider for this to happen automatically so I try to do it myself. It makes me proud to learn new words and phrases every day and I have made an insane amount of progress from practicing these five different languages daily.

Push Ups:

When Johnny and I first started dating almost two years ago, we were hit head on by a car. It was so scary and I actually ended up being hospitalized for injuries to my cervical spine. I was left with a lot of nerve damage in my upper body from the accident, which resulted in my arms and torso becoming weaker than it already was!

To help ease the nerve pain that I was experiencing at the end of every day, I began to do push ups to tone and strengthen my upper body several months ago. I started out with only doing twenty-five, which was really hard. However, I graduated to now doing fifty! If I’m feeling saucy, I sometimes do fifty more. These daily mini workouts have made a noticeable improvement in the upper body pain that I have to deal with and I am excited to continue increasing how many push ups I do. 🙂

All of the above have become a true force of habit for me and my day would not feel complete without doing them. Here’s to continuing to check all of them off my mental to do list every day!

What is something your day wouldn’t be complete without? How long does it take for something to become a habit for you? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Rest Of Summer Goals

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Rest Of Summer Goals

Hi! Can you believe we are already in August? I feel like July flew by! When the month of August arrives, I always feel like summer is about to be over when, in reality, we still have a good month and a half left. There is still much I want to do in that time, including the following:

Let’s Go To The Movies:

The first movie I saw in theaters since several months prior to the start of the pandemic was Demon Slayer The Movie and it was excellent. Sadly, I haven’t been to a movie since seeing it in May and that definitely needs to change. When Johnny and I first started dating, we were always going on dates to the movies and there is plenty to pick from this summer – especially if you’re a horror fan like us. I am dying to see A Quiet Place 2, The Conjuring 3, and Don’t Breathe 2. A few weeks ago, Johnny and I watched Don’t Breathe because he had never seen it and it is just in time for the sequel’s release later this month. 😀

Fun In The Sun:

I love being able to use the pool at my apartment community and, despite making an effort to go weekly, it still doesn’t feel like enough! There is nothing better than taking a dip on a hot summer day and I just know I will regret not using the pool more often once it closes for the year. To remedy this, I plan on visiting the pool at least two times a week so I can make up for lost time when it wasn’t open last year.

More Pictures, Please:

One of my favorite types of posts to create for lifewithlilred are Outfit Of The Days. It is so much fun to me to style outfits, come up with an idea for a photo shoot, and selecting the perfect pics for my blog. It’s basically just me pretending to be on America’s Next Top Model and I live for it lol. It would be a shame to not take advantage of the beautiful weather and shoot some more summer looks so I am hoping to do another handful of photo shoots before the weather turns. Then, keep it posted for my all time favorite: FALL FASHION!!!

Every Day I’m Hustlin’:

I am on the verge of a 1,000 day writing streak on WordPress and am quickly approaching a year in a row of practicing five languages on Duolingo. I am incredibly proud of this and won’t stop even after I have reached these landmark achievements. It is so exciting to get one step closer to my goals every day and who knows? We just might have to do a 1,000th post extravaganza on lifewithlilred with a giveaway! What do you think? 🙂

Here’s to sunny days and lots of fun for all this August!!

What are your goals for the rest of the summer? Do you have any exciting plans? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

On Fire!

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On Fire!

Hi! Once I give myself a goal, I try my darnedest to stick to it – especially when it comes to my blog and practicing five different languages on Duolingo. I am proud to say that I have accomplished a two hundred and twenty day streak on Duolingo since my last update and I cannot wait until I hit one full year of daily practicing. I also reached a major milestone on WordPress, when a notification let me know that I am on an eight hundred and ninety day streak for posting on lifewithlilred. Woah!!!

When I am on the Duolingo app, the streak counter updates every day once I complete one lesson, so I always know where I stand. However, I have never received a notification for days of writing on WordPress and was blown away when my writing streak was announced. I never really thought about how many days straight I had been blogging on lifewithlilred and felt so proud of myself when I was able to put an actual number to it – which amounts to two years and a hundred and sixty days.

For eight hundred and ninety days, I have wrote before work and on the weekend and have been true to my goal of daily blogging. And, since the pandemic, I have made good on practicing with Duo every day too! These habits have become so ingrained in me and, now, I can’t imagine a day without my morning writing sessions and language learning. Writing and trying my hand at different languages have always been my favorite hobbies and it feels so good to accomplish such big milestones on the things that I am most passionate about.

I am very much looking forward to hitting a one year streak on Duo and a one thousand day streak on WordPress and I don’t plan on stopping there! Here’s to countless more days for all of us to reach our goals – I know we can do it. ❤

Do you have any goals for yourself? How do you stay motivated to achieve your goals? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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175 Day Duolingo Streak!

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175 Day Duolingo Streak!

Hello! The last time I gave an update on my Duolingo progress, I had just achieved a one hundred day streak and I finally received my badge for adding seventy-five more days to it. I am so pleased with my progress and am proud of myself for continuing to practice five different languages every day for close to half a year. I am leaving previous goals in the dust and I feel like my skills in French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Czech are improving tenfold.

Thanks to Johnny gifting me Duolingo Plus for Christmas, practicing every day has become an exciting thing rather than an inconvenience because Plus gives you unlimited life. This is so handy on especially tough lessons and I don’t think I would have made it to a one hundred seventy-five day streak without it. I will most definitely be renewing my Plus subscription at the end of the year and highly recommend it.

Other than writing, learning languages is my favorite hobby and I feel good about committing myself even more to it. Similarly to how I feel after I finish a blog post for the day, I feel accomplished every time I complete my language lessons and it has really helped me shake away the pandemic boredom blahs. It’s hard to feel like there is “nothing” to do when I can go on Duolingo and learn brand new words and phrases in multiple different languages!

While I am over the moon with my one seventy-five day streak, I am nowhere close to being done yet because I will not be satisfied until I have a full year’s worth of days on my streak counter. I am almost halfway there and cannot wait to see the results of my hard work after one full year of practicing five languages. Great success!

Have you made progress on your pandemic hobbies? What is your favorite hobby? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Hurray! 100 Day Duolingo Streak

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Hurray! 100 Day Duolingo Streak

Hello! One of my favorite hobbies is learning new languages and I practice French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech on Duolingo. Pre-pandemic, I was lucky if I could get a four or five day streak of practice going with a busy work and social schedule. Now, I am proud to say that I am on an over ONE HUNDRED day streak of practicing all five languages and I am honestly blown away by it. I also don’t plan on stopping any time soon!

For the past one hundred plus days, I have been dedicated to doing one to two lessons per language daily with Duo and it’s exciting for me because I can definitely tell that I have made great improvements. I consider myself to be quite fluent in French (I took it throughout high school and college) and I think I have made huge gains, as I can understand a majority of the French shows and movies I watch without subtitles now. I have found that my Spanish and Italian is much smoother and my vocabulary in both German and Czech has made good progress too.

I know people have talked about their hobbies to NO END during the COVID-19 pandemic but it is just so cool to me to notice substantial gains from just one hundred days of practicing for a half hour. Everything from work to social lives seems to be on a stand still right now with not much to look forward to. However, I look forward to working on my languages every day now so my skill set can continue to blossom.

Learning a different language opens up a whole new world. New friendships, new skills, new entertainment, new dream locations to travel to. Duolingo is a free app and if you find yourself overwhelmed by all of the free time we now have, then I highly recommend giving it a download. You can even treat yourself to Duolingo Plus, which will give you unlimited hearts! Learning something new is exhilarating and incorporating Duolingo into your life could be just what you need to shake some blahs away until things get back to normal. ❤

Do you know a different language? How do you practice? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

3 Things That Keep Me Sane

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3 Things That Keep Me Sane

Hello! Throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, Johnny and I have essentially just been in our apartment other than work and groceries. No one is saying that it is not monotonous AF but it is for the best and we will continue doing our part in keeping ourselves and loved ones safe. With continuous days at home, it can be hard to work up the motivation to do much of anything. But, setting goals has always helped me move forward with what I want to accomplish and completing these three tasks every day has kept me from going totally stir crazy:

Writing Every Morning:

Whether it be on a work day or the weekend, as soon as I take my morning shower and ready myself for the day, I sit at the computer and prepare a scheduled post to publish. I never thought that I would be able to keep daily content coming when there is literally nothing to do. I have surprised myself and think that I am even better at my craft now because I have learned to draw inspiration from all of the little things that now make up my day.

I feel a great sense of accomplishment every time I complete a post during this pandemic because it really can be difficult. However, lifewithlilred has been dedicated to creating daily content for the past several years and not even COVID-19 can stop that! Starting my morning off with a goal already checked off of my to do list makes me feel ready to take on the rest of the day and keeps me motivated to do it again tomorrow.

Practice Languages:

One of my favorite hobbies is learning new languages and every day I practice French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech on Duolingo. In fact, I am on an over eighty day streak of daily practicing and I have never even come close to that before. This Christmas, Johnny got me Duolingo Plus to help me continue practicing my languages in a more efficient way and it has been awesome. No adds and unlimited hearts, baby!

I like to set aside at least an hour every day to work on learning new languages and I feel proud of the huge steps that I have taken in each one that I practice. I definitely feel like I have gotten better in all of them – particularly German and Czech and I never thought that would happen! I feel excited to learn more each day and I can’t wait to get to a one hundred day streak!

Read:

The last thing that I like to do every day is read. I have always been an avid reader and I enjoy it even more now because I feel like I can escape my apartment and join the characters from the book in their world. I try to read at least thirty to forty pages plus in whatever book I am working on each day. I love the feeling of excitement I get every time I crack a book open because I know I am going to be transported on an adventure. However, I love the sense of accomplishment I feel after finishing a book and starting a new one even more. 😀

I am currently reading a delightful book called Miss Benson’s Beetle by one of my favorite authors, Rachel Joyce. It has been a nice palette cleanser from the psychological thrillers that I have been reading so definitely be on the lookout for a Lil Red’s Book Club review of it soon!

Once I complete these three tasks every day, I give myself permission to play all of the video games or watch all of the Netflix that I want. Hey, everyone deserves a treat after accomplishing their daily goals, right? 🙂

Do you set daily goals for yourself? Have you improved on one of your hobbies during the pandemic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul: Boyfriend Edition

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Holiday Haul: Boyfriend Edition

Hello! I am so happy that I got to celebrate another Christmas with my boyfriend, Johnny. He means the absolute world to me and I love him so much. After months of asking him if I could tell him what I got him for Christmas, we finally made a deal to open our presents to each other on the afternoon of the 24th. So, you could imagine my surprise when he came home from work on the 22nd and said we should open our gifts now!

Not only is he getting me a new game for the Nintendo Switch as well as a year’s subscription to Duolingo Plus, he also treated me to the following:

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As soon as I opened my guillotine earrings, I gasped because I have had my eye on them for forever. In fact, I have at least five screenshots saved to remind myself to purchase them whenever they show up on my Facebook newsfeed. The first thing that came out of my mouth was “how did you know?!” because I can’t remember ever telling Johnny how much I liked them. He told me when he saw it on his Facebook he knew that I would love them and that made this gift as well as the matching necklace even more special. He knows me like the back of his hand. ❤

I am so excited to pick out a new game to play on the Switch because I have already beaten the Paper Mario game that Johnny got me for our one year anniversary. I will have to do some browsing before I make my choice but I am definitely thinking more Mario! And, finally, the subscription to Duolingo Plus really takes the cake because for one full year I won’t have to worry about running out of hearts while I practice French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech. It will be so handy and SO freaking appreciated and I plan on starting a new language to learn since I’ll have the extra cushion of unlimited hearts. I am currently debating between Swedish, Latin, or Greek!

My Johnny knows how to spoil me and I feel like the luckiest girl ever. Duolingo Plus is exactly what I wanted and a new game and jewelry are exactly what I needed even though I didn’t know it yet! Is he the best boyfriend ever or what? ❤

How do you and your SO celebrate the holidays? What is your favorite game for the Switch? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

What Have I Been Up To?

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What Have I Been Up To?

Howdy! I will always be the first to say how much I miss pre-COVID life. I miss going on dates with Johnny, seeing all of our friends, and not worrying my head off every time I’m in public. And, as someone who works with very high risk families, nonessential outings just seem unimportant to me. So what in the heck have I been up to, then, if I don’t do much of anything in public any more? A whole lot of the following:

Reading:

I love, love, love to read and always have so ample at home time has meant finishing beaucoup books. I try to read at least two chapters or thirty or so pages depending on the book daily. Right now, I am finishing up the prequel to The Hunger Games called The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes and it is excellent! I have such a hankering now to go back and read the entire series and watch all of the movies, of course. 😀

The Sleeping Nymph by Ilaria Tuti is what’s on deck after my Hunger Games book. I am also always open to suggestions of your favorite books so be sure to let me know in the comments!

Duolingo:

Like reading, I try to practice all five of the languages I’m learning daily on Duolingo. I am currently on a twenty day streak of studying French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Czech and that is huge for me. The last time I had a streak that long was when I was recovering for a month from my oral surgery gone wrong.

I am very motivated to keep that streak going and I am so excited for Johnny to get me Duolingo Plus for Christmas so I no longer have to worry about having enough hearts to complete each practice session. I also plan on adding Swedish, Latin, or Greek into the mix next!

Video Chats:

My ultimate BFF, Lea, and I still see each other about once a month to have a social distanced drink at either one of our homesteads. Other than that, I do a lot of FaceTime, Skype, and Zoom to “see” all of the rest of my pals in my friend group. I love setting aside an hour block or so on the weekend to catch up with friends both near and far and it definitely helps keep me sane to chat even if it isn’t face to face.

Video Games:

Johnny and I are both in love with our Nintendo Switch and when I have some free time, I enjoy playing Animal Crossing. It is so relaxing and fun and I am always excited when the game updates so that you can catch new fish and bugs and participate in different activities like growing pumpkins or foraging mushrooms. I cannot wait to see what our island looks like for Christmas!

I also just beat Paper Mario: The Origami King last week and it was an absolute blast. Johnny got it for me for our one year anniversary and it felt so good to finally beat it. The game was insanely entertaining, visually beautiful, and it was challenging without ever being too too hard. I plan on buying a new Mario game for the Switch soon so if anyone has any favorites, please let me know. 🙂

Online Shopping:

Finally, there is nothing like a little bit of online shopping to help perk me up. I have so enjoyed all of my early Christmas shopping and I am very pleased to say that I am almost done buying for everyone on my gift list. Of course, that doesn’t mean I don’t pick out a little something something for myself too – especially since I haven’t gone shopping in person since February.

I love ordering small pick me ups like face masks to pamper myself with and, when I really feel like splurging, I never say no to a new pair of shoes!

Are the activities I listed above the most exciting? Not by a long shot. But I value my safety and those around me much more than needing to be out and about right now. So, in the end, it’s not all that bad. ❤

What are your favorite at home activities? What do you miss the most from pre-COVID times? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Quarantine Routines

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Quarantine Routines

Hello! I’ll tell you what, ever since March 19th (The day bars and restaurants in Ohio temporarily shut down) my life has changed drastically. For my big girl job, I provide care in home for people with special needs and, now, more than ever it is my responsibility to continue staying healthy for those who need me.

Due to the nature of my job, going out for frivolity is the last thing on my mind. Back track to 2019 and it was the only thing on my mind, lol! Going to shows with Johnny, restaurants, movies, TJMAXX!!! Ugh, I miss all of that so much.

My “normal” routines of going here, there, and everywhere definitely seem to be a thing of the past. So, obviously, I had to fill up all of this newfound free time with other things. They are still fun for me, of course, but I don’t think any of these options trump my bimonthly TJMaxx shopping trips with my mom. Haha, check it out:

Reading:

I have read so many freaking books in the past six months, it is insane. My goal has been to try and finish at least two to three per month and I have achieved it every time. It has been fun to experiment with different authors like Lucy Foley and Ilaria Tuti. Both Johnny and I have also been enjoying our Audible subscription for books on tape, as well. We are always open to author and book suggestions so keep them coming!

Language Learning:

Yes, I currently am still learning French, Spanish, Italian, Czech, and German on Duolingo. I make an effort to try and practice each language four times per week, bare minimum, and so far so good. What I would really like to do in the next month or so is purchase the Duolingo Plus subscription so I never run out of hearts while practicing. This seems very necessary when learning five languages and, once I get Duo Plus, I’d like to start learning a sixth. Any ideas as to which one?

Online Shopping:

Maybe once or so per week, I will take ten to fifteen minutes to browse through some of my favorite online stores to window shop. Mainly TJMaxx, Unique Vintage, ModCloth, and Nasty Gal. It is definitely not the same as regular shopping but it somewhat satisfies that itch to go browse the aisles in person!

When I’m not aimlessly scrolling through websites and saying “oh that’s cute” about basically everything, I am trying to do some early Christmas shopping. With a long list of people to shop for, it is never too early to start the Xmas process and I am pleased with the slow and steady progress I’ve been making.

Movie Nights:

Johnny and I have decided to put a halt to finding something we can both agree on when it comes to movies. Now, we alternate whose pick it is for our movie nights and it has been great! Normally, Johnny will pick a war documentary or movie and I will choose a horror, psychological thriller, or foreign film. I love being able to see all of his favorites and it is exciting to rack my brain and browse through our streaming services to select my next pick!

Are these new routines the most exciting? Well… No. But they are as exciting as I choose to make them and I still always end up having an awesome and totally safe time at home. 🙂

What should Johnny and I watch next? How about a great new suggestion on Audible? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah