The Friday Five

Goodbye, winter. Hello, spring (even if it does feel like winter is still lingering in the shadows). After suffering with back pain for the last week, I sure am glad to have two days off and no plans. Here’s to spending the next 48 hours away from my computer, somewhat off social media, and most likely on the couch with a heating pad, binge-watching shows from the week. It sounds like an ideal weekend, if you ask me.

La Boulange


Long Island Spring

{Hello, spring!}

Spring Starbucks Cups

{My latest obsession: the spring cups from Starbucks}


{A cozy dinner by the fire}

Chocolate Mousse Cake

{The most #instaworthy cake there ever was}

Instagram Moments

My wait for the weekend is almost over. In just a few hours now, I will be catching up on sleep, reading the new book I checked out from the library, and enjoying two whole days of relaxation.

The last few weeks have been stressful, as I’ve waited for test results and answers. It may seem like I am always waiting for results. That’s because I am. In the upcoming weeks I will be going for a radioactive iodine uptake scan to see what might be causing my antithyroglobulin levels to rise. Should you hear the Imagine Dragons song, “Radioactive” playing on the radio, please think of me!

In the meantime, cheers to the (much needed) weekend!


{Story of my life//Image via @sweatpantsandcoffee}


{Exhibit: A}


{First sign of spring on Long Island}

Weekend Workout

{Gearing up for another weekend workout}


{Bold blooms to brighten the work week}

The Weekend Recap: Wellness Edition

I hope you all had a restful weekend! I had a great day in New York City on Saturday—the weather was ideal for walking around, and I learned a ton from my time at The Ash Center. Overall, the Thyroid Yoga Functional Nutrition Intensive was a game-changer for me. I will share a full review with you on the blog soon.

Here’s a quick weekend recap:

Gym & Tonic Water Bottle

{When your new Nordstrom Rack water bottle matches your yoga mat}

Work Hard Get it Done Pens

{Office supplies from Home Goods}

The Ash Center, New York City

{A beautiful view at The Ash Center}

Juice Press

{My first Juice Press smoothie}

Times Square, New York City

{A stroll through Times Square on the way to Penn Station}

Rest, Relaxation…and a Recap

I hope you are all enjoying the long weekend. Today I’m sharing a quick Instagram recap (you can follow me at @livinginsteil). See you back here on Wednesday!

Tumbler from Nordstrom Rack

{Looking forward to using my new tumbler from the Nordstrom Rack}

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Hearts

{Snacking while I work}

New Workout Pants

{New workout pants for the win!}


{The right way to serve a cannoli}

Saturday Snow

{Some unexpected accumulation on a Saturday}

A Productive Start to the New Year

Don’t you just love the first week of the new year when you are your most productive self? I know I do. While my goals are still fresh, the start of a new year helps me also feel rejuvenated. Last week, I was my most productive self—both at home and at work. All of the things that I had been putting off doing, wanting to do, or needing to do, came together. And thanks to a sudden snow storm this past weekend, I had almost two full days at home to ensure I checked off everything on my to do list.

Sunrise Photography

{Saw my first sunrise of 2017}

Christmas Tree

{Said goodbye to my Christmas tree}


{Returned to my weekly kickboxing class}


{Found time to practice my calligraphy}


{Survived the first real snowfall of the season }

Procrastination, Presents, and Podcasts

It is probably fair to say that I am one of the last people to get moving on their holiday shopping (the perils of having a 9-to-5 job!). Yes, I will be doing as much shopping as one person can humanly do today — so think of me as you likely have your presents all wrapped under the tree and are spending your Friday resting up before the big weekend.

Recently, I had the pleasure of participating in my very first podcast with Ashley Jefferson from Post UnderGrad Life. The podcast is now live on iTunes (you can find it by searching “Post UnderGrad Life”) or you can listen to it here on SoundCloud. If you have free time this holiday weekend, download it to hear me talk about my career path, offer career advice to recent graduates, and share my top three tips that have helped me navigate postgraduate life.

Merry Christmas and happy holiday weekend! I’ll be taking Monday off, but will be back with new content on Wednesday.

Christmas Tree Envy

{Christmas tree envy}

Trader Joe's Snowman Cake

{A cute holiday cake from Trader Joe’s}

Cozy Fire at Honu

{Staying toasty over dinner at Honu}

Plaid Shirt from Gap

{My expression when I realized my new Gap shirt matched my Starbucks cup}

Red Nails from OPI

{Red nails from OPI}

Where Did My Weekend Go?

I swear, it was Friday like five seconds ago. Wasn’t it? In another installment of, “where did my weekend go?” I got to spend some time in Port Jefferson, New York, enjoy a sweet crêpe from Sweet ‘n’ Savory, hang with my one of my favorite local business owners (thanks for the fudge, Chocology!), and all while doing some shopping (I scooped up the softest plaid shirt from the Gap — on sale). So, yeah, that’s where my weekend went. It may have been over in the blink of an eye, but at least I had fun. Hope your Monday is off to a good start!

Here’s a quick recap:

Roast Coffee and Tea

{Starting my day with coffee from Roast!}

Art Gallery at the Art League of Long Island

{A stroll through the impressive art gallery at the Art League of Long Island}

Annual Shopping Crawl in Port Jefferson, New York

{Gearing up for the shopping crawl in Port Jefferson with a selfie}

Sweet Crepe from Sweet n Savory

{A Nutella, strawberry, and broken Reese’s peanut butter cup crêpe from Sweet ‘n’ Savory}

Lucky Brand Booties from DSW

{Ending the weekend with a stop at DSW and a new pair of Lucky Brand booties}

Memories from the Weekend

This weekend went by in the blink of an eye (don’t they always?). I love the holiday season, so once December hits I am in full-on holiday mode. I usually wait until the middle of the month to go and pick out a Christmas tree, but this year I decided to get a head start on the process, so I would have more time to enjoy it (nothing beats that fresh tree smell).

But when a friend mentioned a holiday historic house tour in Huntington, the town where I grew up, decorating the tree took a back seat. I was completely unaware that such a tour even took place, but for $40 you can view a variety of homes that are decked out for the holidays. From historic properties with original details from the 1800’s to homes that looked like they were straight out of the HGTV show, “You Live in What?,” the tour made for a memorable day that will get you in the holiday spirit.

Christmas Tree

{Christmas tree shopping}


{Holiday Poinsettia}

Santa Snow

{I’m with you on that, Santa! #nosnow}

2016 Holiday Historic House Tour

{One of the homes on the 2016 Holiday Historic House Tour}



Sweets, Shopping, and Snoozing

I’m still in a food coma as I sit down to write this post, but I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones. Yesterday left me feeling incredibly thankful and grateful. I’m so honored to have this space on the Internet that you all come to and read what I have to say. I’ve shared a lot about my struggles on this site, and while they have been challenging, I am grateful for them because they have shown me a strength that I never knew I had. So, thanks to all of you for your continued support over the years. Your sweet comments make blogging a truly rewarding experience.

I’m looking forward to sleeping in (which I rarely get to do these days) on this long weekend and getting back to my weekly kickboxing routine. Something about indulging in a seven-layer cake on Thanksgiving (combined with all of the birthday sweets this month), makes working out seem like a good idea.

Of course, don’t forget to hit up your favorite retailers today for some steals and deals. But I have a feeling I didn’t need to remind you about that. Happy shopping!

Anthropologie Earrings

{Birthday earrings from Anthropologie}

Bright Blooms

{Bright Blooms}

Roast Coffee and Tea

{Trying out Roast Coffee and Tea}

Cute Signs

{Love these cute signs}

Allergic to Mornings

{Couldn’t resist buying this super soft sweatshirt at Target}

My New York Fashion Week Recap

Last week I attended the Louis Verded show at New York Fashion Week with fellow blogger Kate of Taffeta & Tulips. I know I promised that I would share my recap last week, but my editorial calendar got tangled up — apologies for the delay. But here it is today — and head over to Kate’s blog for more from her Fashion Week experience.

The Louis Verdad show was held at 150 West 28th Street, a short walk from Penn Station. The building itself was beautiful, and I snapped a picture of the ornate ceiling and pendant lighting in the entryway. On the 12th floor, where the presentation took place, we entered a corner room with tons of natural light (which made it difficult to get good shots of the intricate detail of the pieces).



The small room was filled with mannequins showcasing everything from a white trench coat to a butterfly printed dress (a favorite of mine, for sure). I loved the use of texture, as seen in a number of the denim looks, patterns and prints that comprised this collection. But most of all, the wearability of the pieces stood out. Hello, pleated skirt!


{My personal favorite!}




{Love this dress, too!}

The pièce-de-résistance for me was that first navy dress I saw when I walked in. I shared it on Instagram (and it seemed that a lot of you liked it, too). It was timeless — but also had an effortless feel to it. The printed butterfly dress and the denim dress with the tie waist and embellished sleeves rounded out my top three picks from the show.

Here are a few more pieces from the collection:










After the presentation, Kate shot some outfit photos for me (they will be coming to the blog later this week), and we grabbed lunch at Seven Bistro. Remember that place? The one with the stunning chandeliers? I ordered a delicious appetizer of calamari while we chatted about blogging.

Then it was off to Penn Station for the hour and a half train ride home!