Friday, August 31, 2012

Giveaway: Pritchett Prints

With a lot of us going back to college or redecorating our homes for the fall, art is a necessity to brighten up any room. Why buy the usual cliched college poster when you can buy something completely unique from Prichett Prints?

Prichett Prints is an Etsy shop that showcases the shop owner, Heather's, independent work as an artist. Heather has this to say about her shop: "After graduating from the Laguna College of Art and Design in Laguna Beach, CA, I began taking on freelance illustration work. I love my freelance work, it's always interesting and challenging, but Etsy is where I showcase my work done just for me."

I have to say, I was taken aback when I first saw Heather's art. Her prints are absolutely outstanding! To see what I mean, here are some examples of her work.

I love this series of Heather's because she focuses on the realism and intricacy of animal eyes. 

  • Next to it is the eye of a tabby cat. You can really see how unique a cat's eye is compared to the other eyes in the set. That print can be found here: Tabby Cat Eye Gouache Painting.
  • Underneath that are the eyes of a cheetah, looking almost a little sad. The light dancing off of the cheetah's fur is especially interesting. Here is the print: Cheetah Eyes Painting
  • The painting on the bottom right is that of a bird's eye. I love how detailed this painting is--you can see the little turquoise bumps atop the bird's eyelid. The print is here: Detailed Bird Eye Painting.
Wouldn't these look amazing (and so unique) on your walls?

Not only does Heather do this type of artwork, but she also has pen and ink prints available. I have to give props to someone who is skilled in not only one art form, but two!

From upper left corner clockwise:

Something to note about PritchettPrints is that Heather will print her work to any size you want up to 12" by 18", without any extra charge! That way you can get the print just how you like it.

As an added bonus, Heather is offering a free print to one of my readers! She's also offering a bonus 15% off coupon code to all of you! Just enter the code PreppyPM at checkout. 

To enter the giveaway, use the Rafflecopter below. The giveaway will end at 12:01 AM on September 7th. (I will be going on a retreat that weekend, so I will contact the winner the following Monday). The winner has a week to reply to my email before I chose another winner.

What do you all think of Pritchett Prints? What's your favorite piece?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Stitched Tegan Jewelry

I've discovered another fun Etsy shop for you all: Stitched Tegan Jewelry. I'm obviously a jewelry fanatic, so I was so excited to find that the shop owner, Jeanna, sells classic pieces that would look fashionable when worn with anything.

What struck me first when I discovered Stitched Tegan Jewelry was the number of products available, especially when it comes to bracelets. I'm a fan of the "stacking bracelets" trend, and here are a few that would make great additions to your stack.

Starting from bottom lefthand corner and going clockwise:

My favorite bracelet from Stitched Tegan would have to be this Sterling Silver Steampunk anchor bracelet. The nautical trend is huge right now, but this bracelet is unique--it's different than any nautical-inspired piece I've seen before. You'd certainly make a statement wearing it!

StitchedTegan Jewelry also sells an array of necklaces and earrings. 

These bronze owl post earrings are adorable! I would wear them to class almost everyday. I love the crystal and black gems that Jeanna added to it.

Long necklaces are great when worn with solid colors. I'd wear this Floral Essence Long Necklace with an Oxford shirt or a plain sweater, to give my outfit a little oomph.

If you love what you see, you can check out Jeanna's blog and her Twitter to keep up with all her new products.



Also, Jeanna is offering the coupon code BLOGSPECIAL for 40% off of your entire purchase! If you're even hesitant of buying a piece from StitchedTegan Jewelry, now would be the time to purchase it!

What's your favorite piece from Stitched Tegan Jewelry?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Chicago Bucket List

I've been in Chicago for two years now, but I've only got two more to go. I feel like I haven't done enough of the touristy things that every Chicagoan should experience. Yes, I've seen the Bean, Shedd Aquarium, Navy Pier, the Hancock Building. I've shopped the Magnificent Mile, seen a Chicago play, ice-skated at Millennium Park. I've been on the El countless times, been to the beach on the Lakeshore, eaten deep-dish pizza.

But, alas, there are obviously holes in my Chicago experience. Here are some of the things I hope to accomplish this year while here in the Windy City. Wish me luck and, if you're a native Chicagoan, give me suggestions on what else to add to my list!

Pictures via; collage by me

Yep. This will be my year.


Monday, August 27, 2012

Favorite Things of Summer 2012

Well, summer is officially over for me. Today marks the second day of classes. As you read this, I'm probably sitting in my ecology class, being handed out the syllabus and told the class expectations.

But...I can still dream about summer, right? I wanted to look back on my summer by listing some of my favorite things about it.

Favorite Summer Activities
  • Sister's high school graduation: early May
  • ROME: May 18th - June 22nd
  • Devil's Lake: Late June
  • Mallards Game + Rhythm and Booms: June 30th
  • Research and English Class at Loyola: July 3rd - August 11th
  • Family comes to visit Chicago: July 6th-July 8th
  • Art Fair on the Square: July 14th
  • Dark Knight Rises premiere: July 20th
  • Opening Ceremony of the Olympics: July 27th
  • Sister's summer play: August 3rd
  • APT: August 16th
  • Irish Fest: August 17th
Favorite Summer Book
If you read this post, you know it has to be Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

Favorite Summer Movie
Well, I only saw two...Ruby Sparks and The Dark Knight Rises. I gotta say, both were only "meh", so if I could choose a movie I would choose one that I saw this summer but isn't new: Babel. It's another thing that I don't want to spoil for you, so check out the Wikipedia summary if you're interested!

Favorite Summer TV Show
Pretty Little Liars...I know, I know, it's a teen drama, but it's so good! Once you get past all the bad acting and the fact that the high schoolers in it NEVER go to school or study, it's a great mystery show.

Favorite Summer Outfit
This simple outfit: it was comfortable and was perfect to wear during the midst of the heat wave the midwest received.

Favorite Summer Outfit

Favorite Place
Vatican Museums. Hands down. Most intriguing place I've ever been to in my life. I wish I could describe all the treasures the museum holds, but seeing as I needed two days to go through all of it, that could take a long time. St. Peter's Square is second--I went there so many times!

I've dreamed about seeing the "School of Athens" fresco at the Vatican Museums for SO long!

Favorite Day (or, in this case, weekend)

I spent a whole weekend in Rome all by myself because all my friends were away on a trip to Tuscany. I've got to say, it was so liberating! Can you imagine, being a twenty year old girl, alone in a giant, foreign city, having no idea where you are and unable to speak the language around you? It was absolutely thrilling. After the first few moments of panicking and asking "what did I do to myself?", I began to love it.

I went anywhere I wanted to and spent as much as time as needed to see everything. The Colosseum. The Pantheon. The Roman Forum. Piazza Navona. The Spanish Steps. Castel Sant'Angelo. The Vatican Museums. I saw it all throughout the weekend, and sampled Rome's best cappuccino, open-air market and gelato as well. Best experience of my life so far.

Needless to say, I had a great summer and I don't know how any summer afterwards is going to live up to it. Well, it's back to the grind, but that's life. And junior year of college will be great..."I gotta feeling".

(throwback to 2009, everybody!)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday Confessions: Back to College Edition

Forgive me if this post turns into Tumblr, but the pictures and the gif aptly explain the conflicting emotions I have with the fall semester starting. And they're's always a plus.

1. Really? I originally wrote something very passive aggressive here, but no one needs that negativity! I'll just keep it short and vague: when I saw the class rosters for my classes, this was my reaction:

Love this SNL skit! I miss the two of them being on the show.

2. I spent the past week being a Welcome Week Leader: helping freshman getting to know each other and tell them how great my college is.  However, this week I definitely wasn't in the mood to be all bubbly and happy-happy-cheery-cheery-college-is-AWESOME! But I sucked it up and did my job. Hopefully I helped a few freshman out.

I just wanted one freshman to ask me this. Just one.

3. I feel guilty that I have a lake view out of my dorm/apartment/I-don't-really-know-what-to-call- it window. Really, I don't deserve it. I'm not worthy.

Lake Michigan beats the ocean anytime.

4. I'm totally going to become a slacker this year. I can see it already. Now that organic chemistry and my hard biology classes are over, I'm just going to slide by. But I can't let that happen! I'm not in medical school yet! And I still have that pesky MCAT to take next April.

Countdown to the MCAT...maybe it'll give me some motivation.

5. I didn't buy any textbooks this semester! Hurray! I know karma's going to come around and I'll have to buy twenty next semester, but for now, my debit card is very happy.

I Googled "happy debit card", and this is what came up.

What are some of your "Sunday Confessions"?

Friday, August 24, 2012

Giveaway: Sweet N Southern

Recently I came across an adorable Etsy shop: Sweet N Southern! 

Sweet N Southern is a shop that sells colorful key fobs, magnets and push pins. The shop owner, Samantha, has this to say about her shop: "Sweet N Southern is my small little shop that keeps me busy. My crafting goes from one end of the spectrum to the other, so here you can find a little of everything!"

The key fobs are so cute and come in a variety of patterns and colors. My favorite part about them is that they come in two sizes: a mini, keychain size and a wristlet size. I want them all!

Here are the ones pictured in the above image...they're my favorites!

1. Mini Key Fob "Giraffe Print on Pink"
2. Mini Key Fob "Lime Dots on Pink"
3. Mini Key Fob "Pink Plaid on White"
4. Mini Key Fob "Pink Diamonds on Black"
5. Key Fob Wristlet: "Personalized Letter and Color"
6. Key Fob Wristlet: "Pink Diamonds on Lime"

Sweet N' Southern also sells magnets and pushpins. I can just see myself using these to brighten up my dorm's refrigerator and cork board. With the following patterns, you can choose to get four magnets, four pushpins or half and half.

Here are the listings for the glass marble magnets or pushpins, from the upper lefthand box going clockwise:

Don't you love the donut pins? So cute!

Finally, Sweet N Southern has a few mini pushpin sets in their clearance section. This is my favorite set:

What are some of your favorite products of Sweet N Southern? Be sure to check out the shop for more fun colors and patterns!

Also, Samantha is kind enough to offer a pack of pushpins and magnets to one lucky reader. Enter the giveaway via the widget below. The giveaway will end on August 31st at 12:01 a.m. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*After the prize is drawn, I will send an email to the winner; if the winner does not respond in 7 days, I will pick another person to win the prize

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Kate Middleton's (Affordable) Olympic Style

During the Olympics, I saw this slideshow on Yahoo! that showed what Kate Middleton wore to all of the events. The outfits are all very simple and chic, making me wonder how easily you could mimic her style. Here are of her Olympic outfits and my take on them:

Kate Middleton Goes to the Olympics: Torch Relay

Kate Middleton Goes to the Olympics: Torch Relay by preppypremed featuring short sleeve shirts

  • Blue pants can be found anywhere, but I found the best-priced pair at H&M
  • I've found $15 Ralph Lauren Polos at TJ Maxx and've just got to look for them!
  • These DSW wedges, though not exactly like Kate's pair, are very close and would be a good investment

Kate Middleton @ The Olympics

Kate Middleton @ The Olympics by preppypremed featuring leather bags

  • The skinny jeans, navy blazer and striped tee are all probably part of your wardrobe already
  • sells old-fashioned umbrellas like Kate's in a variety of colors
  • This Michael Kors wallet can be found on Ebay for a great price
  • The closest shoes to Kate's that I could find were these Lauren by Ralph Lauren wedges, which could be worn into fall and beyond

Kate Middleton @ The Olympics: Visit to Team GB

Kate Middleton @ The Olympics: Visit to Team GB by preppypremed featuring h&m jackets

  • The colorful red blazer can be found at many places, such as H&M and J.Crew. Red is a big color this season
  • Try darker skinny or straight jeans with this outfit to let the red pop out
  • The dot t-shirt can be found at Old Navy for $20
  • Though we can't see what shoes Kate is wearing, I picture gold flats would go great, along with a black clutch wallet.
How do you all like Kate Middleton's style?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Emergency Backpack Kit + Pencil Pouch Organization

Remember when I posted about what I carry around in my backpack? Well, if you thought I was obsessive-compulsive then, wait until I show you my Emergency Backpack Kit. 

What is it? A makeup bag that I fill up with all the essentials you never know if you'll need or not while in class, at the library or at work. Yes, it's a little intense, but at least I'm always prepared!

Emergency Backpack Kit

The essentials:

  • Makeup bag to hold it all
  • Mini stapler
  • Mini comb and mirror (the Chicago wind kills  my hair!)
  • Hair ties: I'm loving the satin hair ties that are all the rage.
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Lipgloss
  • Scrap paper
  • Post-it Notes
  • Lip Balm: My favorite is Burt's Bees
  • White-out
  • Aspirin/Advil
  • Bandaid
  • Calculator
  • Extra erasers
  • Gum
  • Hand lotion and sanitizer: I love Bath and Body Works products, such as this Shea Cashmere lotion and their Pocket Bacs. They're perfect for winter!
To finish out the school supply posts, I also wanted to share with you what I put in my pencil pouch. It's pretty simple, but it does the trick!

Pencil Pouch Organization

Pencil Pouch Organization by preppypremed on Polyvore

The essentials:
  • Pencil pouch: I'm in love with FallInDesign's pencil pouch here, but usually I just get slider pencil cases. They're only $.69 at Target!
  • Colorful pens: Besides having your basic black and blue pens, I also use a few different colored ones to color-code my assignments and such
  • Highlighters: You've got to get Tul highlighters! I got them in my Christmas stocking last year and I love them. They're long-lasting, unlike some of the cheaper highlighters I've used.
  • Post-It Tabs: Definitely necessary to mark your place in one of your huge textbooks.
And this ends the back to school posts! Whew.

Did I miss anything? What are some of your school essentials?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Back to School Shopping List

Since summer is wrapping up, I decided to make a "back to school" list featuring items that I've talked about in the past few weeks. Even if you're not going back to school, fall is a great time to buy a few new items.

Back to School Shopping Essentials

Back to School Shopping Essentials by preppypremed featuring statement necklaces

Links go to previous posts where the products are talked about in-depth

2. New stud earrings (featured: Kate Spade "Putting on the Ritz" Stud Earrings)

8. Blazer

9. Wristlet (featured: Vera Bradley All-In-One Wristlet)

Are you all stocking up for the new season?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Blog Organization

I wanted to write a post asking how you all keep your blog organized. I just started a new system of planning out my posts that I wanted to share. However, I wanted to know what works best for all of you!

I like planning out my posts in advance because I never know when I'll be busy or not. I try to post everyday (except Saturdays), so I started scheduling posts using a binder that I made.

Ta-da! I filled it with printable, free pages from that help you keep a calendar of your blog posts. The calendar can be found here.

Here's what one of my (half filled-out) pages looks like:

  • As you can see, I write the post topic under the day of the week that I plan to schedule it. I strikethrough it when the post is written and scheduled on Blogger
  • I put boxes to check off when I've replied to every comment of that post and when I've visited everyone's blogs back
  • The middle box on the right is where I list the "blog hops" I plan to join that week
  • Above that is a "to-do" box where I write down if I still have to make any images for a blog post that week
  • The bottom righthand box is a place to put ideas for the following week

Does anyone else have a similar system? Do you like planning your posts in advance or do you write them spur of the moment?

Sunday, August 19, 2012

End-Of-Summer Activities

I go back to college on Sunday, and my sister leaves for her college on Friday. Therefore, this weekend was all about celebrating the end of summer!

Every summer we try to go to a play at a place called American Players Theater. It's an outside, in-the-round stage located about an hour outside of Madison, WI in the middle of the country. The views are fantastic!

We saw a play called The Admirable Crichton, which was about a wealthily, early 20th century family who travel overseas with their servants and get shipwrecked on a desert island. It was really funny, but probably the best part of the performance was, as it got dark outside, watching the bats fly around over our heads!

We spent Saturday at the Irish Fest in Milwaukee. Every summer there are all kinds of cultural tests that take place on the Summer Fest grounds: Polish Fest, German Fest, etc. Even though we don't have a single bit of Irish in us, we went anyway!

Irish stew & potatoes

Carrot cake cupcake and Irish coffee

The Punch Brothers: a bluegrass band who made a single for the Hunger Games soundtrack

What are you all doing to celebrate the end of summer?

Friday, August 17, 2012

"Gone Girl"=Best Book of the Summer?

I think yes. 

Book Description from Amazon:    "On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer? 
   As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?'

Judging by the brief synopsis, I figured I'd get bored quickly by this book. Wife goes missing, husband gets accused? Sounds like an episode of Nancy Grace to me.

But no. There is so much more to Gone Girl than that. The editors clearly don't want to spoil the book and have made the synopsis vague on purpose. The twists and turns are what make Gone Girl the best book of the summer. They're part of the adventure of reading it, so they can't be spoiled.

 The whole point of the novel is that nothing is what it seems to be. You don't know who's lying, who's telling the truth. You're presented with a clear idea of who the two main characters are--Amy and her husband Nick--but those ideas continue morphing as progress further into the novel.

And...that's about as much as I can tell you without spoiling it for you. My advice? Pick up Gone Girl now before someone else spoils it for you! If you were aware of the twists beforehand, I don't think the book would be interesting at all.

I still haven't finished it, but I probably will by the time the night is over. The book might just have kept me up till 2 last night...I couldn't put it down! Thanks for anyone who suggested this book for me, whether you did on your blog or you did via a comment on one of my previous posts. I love it!

So, since you all have good taste, what do you think--what's the last book I should read before the fall semester begins? Any suggestions?