20 While I'm 20

June 25, 2013

I said really cryptically the other day that I would be posting more about turning 20, so here it is. As you all know, I had my 20th birthday a little over a week ago, and let me just tell you that there is nothing special about turning 20. That's what I thought anyway, until I decided to make this year special. A few weeks ago I was reading in the UK Cosmo about something called 35 While You're 35, where people do 35 nice things for other people the year that they turn 35. Well I have decided to adapt this cause to my circumstances and have changed it to 20 While I'm 20. The best part is that I must follow through because I have my blog to hold me accountable. 

Obviously, I hope that I do more than 20 nice things for people over the course of a year, but I will do 20 things with the intention of going towards this goal. 

So--I started today! Here is 1/20:

I love receiving mail, so I decided to buy some cute cards and send letters saying nice things to strangers. 

Who wouldn't want to get this cute card in the mail?!

Finding random strangers' addresses was the tricky part. I looked in the British White Pages, but I needed to search a name to get an address. How could I possibly choose some random British sounding name to search? So naturally, I searched my own name! I chose two different people with my initials living in London and decided that they were going to be my recipients. I struggled a bit with what to write inside, just trying to think about what I'd like to hear if the roles were reversed. In short I said that I love receiving mail, so I hoped that their day would be a little brighter from receiving my card. I also told them that they are wonderful and that if ever they're having a bad day, there is someone out there who is thinking about them! Kind of cheesy, I know. 

I sent them off in the hopes that I make someone's day a little bit better.

Have you guys seen any cool things that people have done for others? I need some suggestions! Also, how would you feel if you received a letter from a stranger?

xo Catherine

Last London Weekend

June 24, 2013

Well my last weekend in London has come and gone, and it was bittersweet. It was sad to realize that my time in London is drawing to an end and that I'm going to have to pack things into the next couple of days. Also this week I have papers to work on...gross. Anyway the sweet half of bittersweet is that my mom is finally here! That basically signifies the end of the trip now that she has arrived, but I'm that much closer to France now! I've been having dreams about Paris and Nice, so you could say I'm excited. It will also be nice because I won't have work or school to stress me out, so it will be a real vacation!

Sorry about the lack of posting lately, but they will be few and far between until I'm back in the States and have the time and internet access to post on a more regular basis!

Anyways, here are a few pictures from my packed last weekend in the wonderful London:

Went to see Swan Lake at the Royal Albert Hall on Thursday.

Went to the Leadenhall Markets on Friday where Diagon Ally was filmed in the first Harry Potter movie...though I don't see the resemblance.

Went on a tour of Fuller's Brewery on Friday.

Free beer sampling after the tour.

Friday night we went to the London Zoo, which is open on Friday nights just for adults during June. It was so fun!

There was an area called the  "invisible DJ" where you could rent these light-up headphones and then go dance, so only the people with the headphones could hear the music. It was so funny to watch!

Went to see St. Paul's cathedral where Charles and Diana were married on Saturday morning.

Then we went to the Portobello Markets, which were huge and amazing! I bought some really fun stuff, but didn't get any pictures unfortunately. Also not pictured, my mom arrived to spend the next two weeks with us on Saturday!

Saturday night was the Camden pub crawl.

Some of the pubs were really cute!

Sunday morning started off walking by the Sherlock Homes house.

Then it was on to Abbey Road.

Then we ended the day with an organ recital in Westminster Abbey. I hadn't been inside the church yet so that was really fun to see. I got to walk where Will and Kate got married!

Hope you all have a great week!

xo Catherine

Birthday Weekend

June 17, 2013

This past weekend I had my 20th birthday in London. It was really strange being away from home for my birthday, but I had plenty of fun things to keep me distracted. Here are a few snapshots from Birthday Weekend.

On Friday we went out to dinner at a cute Italian restaurant. Here's me doing a Gatsby pose with my champagne:

Lipstick marks...oops.

After dinner we went to see The Lion King. Though I have been to many shows over the years, I have always been hesitant to see The Lion King for some reason. I'm glad that we went, but I wasn't wowed. We got to sit in a box, and there was a performer in the box with us for the first few minutes, so that was definitely cool. I will say that the costumes, set, and props were amazing.

Then Saturday (actual birthday) we started the day off bright and early to get a spot along the fence (eek!) to see the Trouping of the Colours. It's a parade to celebrate the official state birthday of the Queen. The whole royal family was present!! I still can't believe I saw Kate Middleton in real life. Can you say girl crush? Here are a few pictures from the parade:
The Queen's carriage.

Kate, Camilla and Harry.

The Queen.

The parade ended with a flyover. 

After all of that we went for high tea at The Orangery, which is in Hyde Park next to Kensington Palace.


That night, we were going to go out to a speak easy for dinner and drinks, but that didn't pan out. However, I was still dressed Gatsby style:

This feathered hair piece was just too hard to resist for a speak easy :) don't worry we're actually going to go to a speak easy a week from Wednesday!

Then Sunday was my relaxation day. After being here for five weeks, I haven't had a single day where I just stayed at home and hung out. I read an entire book, which felt so good. I don't have time to read during the regular school year! 

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

xo Catherine

P.S. more to come on turning 20 and what I plan to do this year. 

The Week in Review

June 14, 2013

This week I...

Went to an ice bar in Oxford Circus. It was an interesting experience...they only allow you to be in there for 45 minutes and they make you wear these cape/coat things, but it was fun!

We also went to look at some of our favorite places lit up at night:


Big Ben.

The London Eye.

All in all it was a good week! I can't believe this is our second to last weekend in London...but it's birthday weekend! The festivities commence tonight, starting with dinner and a show :)

Happy weekend!

xo Catherine

Liebster Award

June 13, 2013

I'm very excited to be posting today! I had the honor of being nominated for a Liebster Award by Courtney of Twentyapolis--so sweet!

How it works: bloggers nominate each other to help grow networks and discover new bloggers. It's a fun way to find new bloggers and help each other get recognition, so I'm so excited to be nominated and now to do some nominating of my own! 

The Rules:
1. Everyone who is nominated must post 11 things about themselves.
2. Answer the questions the tagger set for you. Then come up with 11 questions for your nominees.
3. Choose 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers and nominate them for a Liebster Award. Tag them in your post as well. (Nominees--I know some of you have more than 200 followers, no disrespect, but I just love your blogs and want to recognize them! Also, I realize some of you have been tagged already.)
4. Go to each bloggers page and tell them about their nomination.
5. Connect with the bloggers via social media and follow their blog.

So here are my questions from Courtney at Twentyapolis:
Tell us about your blog!
My Inner Fabulous was originally called Friends Fun Fashion Food when I started it in November of 2012, to encompass all the things I anticipated blogging about. I honestly created it because I was told that it would look good to have on my resume. I never expected to love it as much as I do! It's such a fun way to get creative and keep in touch with people (I have friends and family tell me they wouldn't know what was going on in my life if I didn't update my blog!) I then changed the name and revamped my site to the current My Inner Fabulous. I think that everyone has some fabulous inside of them and it's important to channel that and be confident!

What is one thing your readers don't know about you?
I've mentioned him a few times on the blog before, but I don't think I've ever gone into detail. I am in a long (currently very long) distance relationship. I have been dating the most amazing man for about four years and have never been happier. He lives in California, so I'm basically missing him like crazy right now! It's been two months since I've seen him, and I've got about another month to go before I get to go visit him in July. (25 days!)

What inspires you?
Confidence. I love seeing confident women owning whatever it is they're passionate about.

Spill the details. What's your guilty pleasure?
Singing when I'm alone. I can't get enough of jamming by myself in the car or shower. (Also, my Crocs--don't give me that look!)

Next vacation?
Well I'm currently in London, but since I'm working and taking classes I won't count it as a vacation. In two weeks when my program is over I will be headed to France, so we'll say that's my next vacation!

Which would you pick, truth or dare?

Describe your perfect Saturday:
I would get to sleep in! Then I absolutely love breakfast food, so I'd start the day off either with donuts, french toast or chocolate chip pancakes. Then I'd have plenty of time to catch up on blogs/emails/Pinterest etc. After catching up with all of that I'd head to the beach or pool to lay in the sunshine and read a really bad (but oh so good) book and magazines. Then I'd end the day with a night out with my man and movie watching! (Also, there would be lots of dogs and twinkle lights involved.)

What's one goal you would like to accomplish this year?
I would love to get a paying job before the end of the summer!

How would you describe your personal style?
Classics with a few risks (aka: some pretty tame pattern mixing).

Name one thing you are currently obsessed with:
Ben and Jerry's 'Chocolate Fudge Brownie'

One piece of advice for bloggers:
Don't feel like you need to create meaningless content just so you can post often. Only post when you feel like you have something worthwhile to say/show/share.

So, here are my nominees!
Libby of Stylin' Iowan
Brittany of GLAMBAMxo
Lauren of Lake Shore Lady
Amanda and Jennie of 2 Girls in 2 Cities
Katelyn of Katalina Girl

Questions for my nominees:
How did you start your blog?
What do you splurge on?
What do you always avoid?
Name one thing you can't live without.
If you were going to start a company, what would it be?
What makes you feel amazing when you wear it?
Favorite store to shop at?
What motivates you?
What is your biggest fear?
What's your favorite thing to do on a Sunday morning?
Dogs or cats?

Thanks for reading!

xo Catherine

The Weekend

June 10, 2013

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a brilliant (I'm so British now) weekend, I know I did! I was able to check six things off of my To Do In London list. Starting with Friday:

I spent part of my day at the British Museum. It was exhausting to say the least--there are over 70 galleries:

Then at night,

I saw Singing in the Rain on its second to last night with Ellen and one of our flatmates. We bought rush tickets the day of and were in the third and fourth rows! It was incredible. I was curious to see how they would do the whole rain part of it...let's just say that we got splashed multiple times.

Saturday was overall wonderful, starting with changing of the guards:

They played their instruments on horses! So impressive.

Being an American, I can't get enough of the royals and their traditions. We don't have anything like that, so it's all so fascinating. The changing of the guards was very fun to watch. I can't believe they do the whole speil every day during the summer. 

For lunch, I had traditional bangers and mash, and tried some of a traditional pie. It was interesting to be eating what I consider a breakfast food (sausage) with a dinner food (mashed potatoes).

Then Saturday night we did the best thing so far on this trip: The Making of Harry Potter at Warner Brothers Studio Tour. I can't even begin to describe how elated I was the entire time I was there. I grew up with Harry Potter and was still am obsessed with the series. Just ask my mom or sister. I know it makes me seem obsessive, but I absolutely loved this tour, and even teared up a few times.

Entrance to the Great Hall.

Tried butterbeer. So good!

I felt so overwhelmed and nostalgic multiple times, like I was seeing things from my childhood. I know it sounds over the top, but I really did grow up with this series. 

Some goodies from the giftshop :) After we did the tour, naturally we had to go to King's Cross Station and take the classic picture running through the wall at platform 9 3/4.

Sunday Ellen and I went to the Churchill War Rooms. This was where Churchill and his War Cabinet spent a lot of their time in an underground bunker during WWII. It was really interesting, and cool to see the war from a different perspective. 

Then we walked around Hyde park and went to see the Wellington Arch.

Also on Sunday I bought this pretty canvas from a street artist:

This was easily my favorite weekend in London so far. Next weekend is my birthday weekend though, and we have some pretty fun things planned, so we'll see if this weekend can be topped!

Anyone else do anything fun this weekend?

xo Catherine 

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