Tuesday, October 10, 2017

5 Things To Check Off Before Buying Their Engagement Ring

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

So, you are sure you want to spend the rest of your life with your guy, and you’ve already been dropping every possible hint you can, but he just doesn’t seem any closer to popping that important question, does he? Don’t get upset. Buying the engagement ring is arguably one of the most intimidating, scary, and expensive things he will ever do in his life. 
But, before he buys the ring and presents it to you, he has to get through a major checklist. So, if your guy seems to be putting off proposing, just know that he may well be making his way through the items we will discuss below. And, if that doesn’t bring you even a little bit of peace, why not share the list with him as a not-so-subtle reminder that if he loves it, he ought to put a ring on it?
If you’re a guy getting ready to propose, make sure you carefully work through the list below before you take the leap.
  • Learning the Language
Okay, nobody expects you to become a diamond expert just to pick out the perfect ring for your lucky lady, but you are going to have several new words you will need to learn if you want to make the right choice. At the very least, you will need to understand the four C’s – carat, cut, colour, and clarity – before you even have an idea of what you are looking at. Do your homework, but rest assured a reputable jeweller will be able to walk you through your new vocabulary.
  • Set a Budget
The next step is to figure out roughly how much you want to spend on the ring and how to slash that final cost without sacrificing integrity, and then start saving up that amount to spend on a ring. 
  • Her Style and Size
Even if you have not yet saved up enough money to get your custom made engagement rings at Certified Diamond Network, you still need to learn about what kind of style your partner wants and her ring size, too. Many a man about to propose has been known to steal another ring that she often wears, use their own finger, or even press another ring into a bar of soap to take to a jeweller to figure out her size. While none of these sneaky plans are completely watertight, and they are all sure to get the nerves up, they can help with getting her size relatively right. Don’t forget that choosing the perfect style is also going to take some planning.
  • Shop Around for Options
Once everything starts to come together, there is still some planning to do. You should check out different kinds of rings and diamonds, shop around for prices, and carefully check a store’s return policies and insurance policies. It may not sound romantic, but it a practical necessity.
  • Seek Permission
There seem to be different schools of thought when it comes to whether or not to ask her father’s permission to marry the woman of your dreams, but if she is traditional, she is sure to appreciate it. Getting up the courage to ask and then working out a plan to do it without her knowing also takes some planning. And it all must happen before shopping for the ring!

Remember those 5 things and you’ll be well-prepared when shopping for an engagement ring.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Summer, I Liked You

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Achieve a similar look: |Top|Skirt|Plaid Shirt|

When the alarm went off at 5AM, but you don't even care because you're headed to your favorite place in the entire world (Brig)... summer, that's when I liked you.

When the taste of chips and guac cause you to take a moment and thank God for your blessings... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you're reunited with your true love- Wawa... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you spontaneously visit your best friend in her new apartment-in a new city and you rediscover places like this one to photograph in... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you wake up to check on your phone, only to realize you've overslept by thirty minutes-- yes even then... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you take that first plunge underwater and it officially feels like summer... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you spend Sunday morning with your favorite person just exploring down every isle in Bed, Bath, and Beyond... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you discover raspberry margaritas for the first time, skin your knee walking to one of your favorite bars, only get a few hours of sleep, but get a night you'll remember forever spent with your best friend who will be gone for two years... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you look back on your prayer journal and you're reminded God brings great gifts and you've got this... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you're in a homegoods calling your sister because the one you've had a crush on for a while finally asked you to do something- and in that moment you feel everything shift... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you spend four days modeling every dress in your closet for your mother- trying to decide which one is the dress for a night you weren't even sure was actually defined as a "date"... summer, that's when I liked you.

When your heart practically jumps out of your chest the moment you drive across that bridge into Brigantine... summer, that's when I liked you.

When he finally leans in for that kiss and you can finally tell yourself- yep it's a date... summer, that's when I liked you.

When a simple good morning text can make you grin from ear to ear... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you get home from work and realize you're actually happy with where you are in life... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you realize Newsies in on netflix, so you spend the whole afternoon performing a one woman show in your living room... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you pull up to your best friend's street and see her dog attacking the door... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you make your first adult purchase and come home with your dream car- a jeep compass... summer, that's when I liked you.

When after years of searching you find the perfect romper... summer, that's when I liked you.

When you learn that coke and malibu work just as well as rum and coke... summer, that's when I liked you.

May we remember these moments forever and cling to them during the not so pretty moments of life.

Overall life, I think I like you.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

3 Things to Do Before Purchasing From a Fashion Catalogue

Sunday, September 17, 2017

More British consumers are swapping the high street for fashion catalogues. Online retailers specialise in the latest clothes and accessories and cater for a wide range of styles. Before you order products from a catalogue, however, there are some things that you need to know. Here are three things to think about before purchasing from a fashion catalogue.

1. Compare Interest Rates

Catalogues come with various rates of interest, depending on the retailer. Do your research and choose a company that has a competitive rate. Comparison websites are a good place to start. Here you can find various retailers all in the same place. You can compare rates and choose the best company for you. Then, you can contact the retailer to find out more about their application process. If you would like to find out about some catalogues which offer different finance options then visit coolcatalogues.co.uk

2. Choose a Repayment Method That Suits You

With online fashion catalogues, you can spread the cost of payments and then make repayments via a number of different ways. You can log into your personal account on a retailer's website, for example, or speak with a member of staff over the phone. When looking for a fashion catalogue, choose a company that provides you with various ways to make repayments. This gives you more flexibility in the long run.

3. Think About Products

Some catalogues sell the latest fashion accessories from the world's biggest brands. Others have clothes from labels that you might not have heard about yet. Choose a company that has the type of clothes you like and compare prices. When it's time to apply for a credit account with a retailer, look out for the best deals. Some retailers give you 10, or even 20, percent off your first purchase or other incentives like free delivery. You might need a coupon code to qualify for these special offers, so check out the retailer's social media accounts, or sign up to their mailing list and receive the latest discounts to your email inbox.

Happy Shopping

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Life Lately

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Isn't it weird how certain smells, weather, and feelings can transport you back into time? I'm currently enjoying my first day off where I can do whatever I want for the entire day. I've watched my favorite pastor speak, ate lunch, and am focusing on my skincare routine lol. I walked out to grab my favorite face mask out from the trunk of my car when I was hit with what feels like our first fall day. (I'm in complete denial that summer is coming to end.) Immediately, I'm transported back to my first nannying days. I was living in New Jersey and was going full force on LookBrooke. I would roam the Hamilton mall, TJ Maxx, and Target looking at different displays and outfits gathering inspiration. I would head home and write up a post and meet the kids at their bus stop. It's funny how much your life can change yet still remain the same.

I'm currently sitting at the same computer I used then, with the same face-mask, and the same urge to go to Marshals and waste all my money on their beauty section. I don't nanny anymore, which kills me a little more each day than it had before. I still devour coffee, I've just switched over to Sheetz from Wawa. Fun fact: Their kona mocha with mint tastes almost like a mocha mint iced coffee and will have your head spinning and mind flooding with the good ole Jerz days.

I still get the urge to call my Grandma daily. I remember getting out of a job interview and immediately went to call her. You have a bad day at work, you have one of the best nights of your life, you get a deal on your dream sweater at your favorite store... the list goes on and on.  I don't think the urge will ever go away and no one will be my best friend like she was- but I don't want that urge to go away. It's like she's still there and I don't want that memory of her to ever diminish.

This was the first summer I didn't spend in New Jersey in 10+ years. I visited once, in late July but that was it. I thought I would feel odd all summer, that a part of me would be missing but I survived. Don't get me wrong I missed my friends terribly and FOMO is indeed real but I got a new appreciation for how much that place molded me.

My parents bought a condo in North Myrtle Beach at the very beginning of summer, my 60 year old beast of a Dad spent his summer being a lifeguard after retiring from Jersey two summers ago. It felt weird not being able to go to the beach whenever I liked (like after work every single day) and when I did spend time at the beach it was all the way in South Carolina... a place I hadn't visited since I was 18. Some of my favorite places there include: Nacho HippoBurgerFi, and the North Myrtle TJ Maxx lolol.

You can keep up with me and my day to day experiences on a couple different social media platforms:
- I post most actively on Instagram and Instagram stories, if you're into the more fashion and life style aspect of LookBrooke... this is the platform for you.
-If you want to laugh and see some day to day updates, twitter is for you.
-If you've ever wondered what it would look like if I cut out photos from magazines and created a "mood board"... tumblr is for you.

Connect, let's be friends xoxo.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

A Letter To My College Self

Sunday, March 26, 2017
**This post is in collaboration with Earnest**

**Background for those who don't know me personally or have not been following from the beginning: I studied at Liberty University for three years where I pursued a theater performance major. While it did not work out for me, I then left school because I had no idea what I wanted to do after that.

Dear College Junior Brooke,

I know you feel like shoveling mac-and-cheese into your mouth with an actual shovel and calling it a day, for forever. I know you're embarrassed, you feel lost, and you mistakenly feel as though your worth has diminished. Your experiences in college may help shape you, but they do NOT define you. Your worth is not measured in your failures or your success.

Now this is the best advice I could give: SCREW IT.
All of it.

Screw the people who look at you as though you are unworthy because your path is different than theirs! That's all it was Brooke, your path is different. Sure they could have more talent than you in certain areas but guess what? That just means you have other talents that you're more skilled in (even if it feels like it's just knowing how to embarrass yourself or finding out who that b in his snap story was in 10 seconds flat.) I'd bet money they can't social media sweep like you can, and that skill comes in handy!

Screw the pity party! (It may occasionally come out when you've drank a little too much Malibu, we can forgive it...) Slacking off on your work because you lost your motivation will get you no where. It will just leave you regretting what you did, and creating more obstacles when you finally know your next move. *insert poop emoji* happens, it's a part of life! Throw off the covers, pick yourself up from the ground, throw out the tissue box, and let's move on. You can hurt, you can feel, and taking time off to figure out what you should do next is the right move too. Just don't be afraid to move or to "make a fool of yourself again", I believe in you and so do SO many others. Get up, work hard and show everyone what you're made of.

Screw the plan! So you were wrong, you aren't going to study theater and leave with a degree. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there will be plenty of other plans that fall apart too. Remember when you swore to yourself that you'd NEVER see Spring Awakening with a boy because you'd explode with embarrassment? HAHAH talk about that one to 2016 Brooke. Here's the cool thing though: there will be many big life events and people introduced  to your life who never would have been if this 'plan A' had succeeded. It's exciting because you get to have a new plan. Remember how you grew up wanting to be a teacher for years? See, plans change because life happens there will be many twists and turns along the way... enjoy the ride.

I know you had a full ride to LU and feel like you squandered that, but there are companies like Earnest who help you build your new dreams with services like personal loans AND student refinancing. Spoiler alert: you're currently applying for college again and have a plan. Life works out, don't worry about it ;)

Screw the fears and doubts! Life is too short to be tied down by your insecurities. I know the inside voices, the ones that tell you that you will never be good enough no matter what you do. That's not reasoning, that's doubt and the devil whispering in your ear. One of my favorite lyrics come from a musical called [title of show], that I think sums it up:

The last vampire is the mother of all vampires and that is the vampire of despair. It will wake you up at 4am to say things like:
  • Who do you think you're kidding?
  • You look like a fool.
  • No matter how hard you try, you'll never be good enough.
Why is it if some dude came up to me on the subway platform and said these things, I would think he was a mentally ill asshole. But if the vampire inside my head says it, it's the voice of reason.

Life is about fear. That moment when your stomach feels as though three giant catfish are flopping around in there, all because his name popped up on your phone and you like him. When you're sitting in your best friend's car begging her to turn around and go home. You aren't actually prepared to see a guy for real not just through the phone screen thanks to Snapchat, which is much more preferable at the moment: as you have a panic attack but it's too late because he's approaching the car now.

You know how in The Game of Life you make certain choices to go down the more risky paths, just like that our decisions lead down different paths. Typically, every choice we make gives us those butterflies. It's okay to feel, it's okay to sit down with hundreds of questions bouncing around in your head because you're sitting analyzing every moment of a night that means nothing, what's not okay is letting those feelings define you.

When you first started this blog, you didn't want anyone to know about it except three friends. Now strangers read and get a glimpse of your life and like it. We all have things that scare us, but doesn't that just mean we're passionate?

Girl, don't give up. That doesn't mean you can't have new dreams but it means you can't let circumstances keep you from achieving those new dreams. You are in for a world of great surprises, crazy stories, and the greatest people in your life a girl could ask for.

-- love your still paranoid and anxious but slightly wiser self, we got this xoxo

PS everybody was right- you are not that guys type- try guard or frat instead 
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