Lifestyle

What I Read: March/April 2019

This past month (and a half), I read a really great book about relationships and the science behind them so I thought I would bring back my book of the month series for it. I read the book The Chemistry Between Us by Larry Young and Brian Alexander as I mentioned in my March Favorites.

This book discusses a few aspects of relationships, right down to the science of it. A few topics the authors focused on were how our sexual brain actually functions and why, why we want to have sex, why mother’s care for their children, and why we cheat on our partners. The authors went over A LOT of animal studies, as well as a few human studies to prove their points which was really interesting to read about. It’s shocking how similar human sexual brain function is to mice, voles, and even leeches.

Our sexual brain function mainly comes down to oxytocin but also includes a few other brain chemicals such as vasopressin and dopamine. Obviously, our sexual hormones play a major role also, but according to this book, it’s really oxytocin that makes us do all the crazy (and not so crazy) things we do for love (or sex). It’s the oxytocin in our brains that make us trust our partners, care for our children and ultimately become “addicted” to our partners.

The most interesting part of the book for me, personally, was learning about monogamy versus infidelity in nature and in human relationships. I learned that in nature, social relationships (partner bonded/monogamous relationships) and sexual relationships are completely separate brain functions and the same goes for humans. As an intelligent species, we’ve learned to actually lump the two together, but in reference to our evolution, they are not the same at all. This explains why some people are more prone to cheat on their partners.

There were quite a few startling statistics in this book, but one of the most interesting to me, was that 30-40% of married couples have had extra-marital sex. In non-marital, monogamous relationships, about 50% of people had sex outside their relationship. That’s a lot of people. And humans are not the only species to cheat on their partners. In nature, almost every species that has monogamy, also has a few that will cheat on their partners even in the most monogamous of animals species such as prairie voles.

I think this book was such an interesting, albeit tough, read. There’s lots of science terms but it’s balanced out with real life examples and mild humor. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who likes to learn about how the brain works, and anyone who wants to learn a little bit more about relationships, in a non-self-help kind of way.

I hope you enjoyed! xx

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

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Fashion

March 2019 Favorites

March is finally over and spring is here to stay! 2019 is absolutely FLYING by and I think I say that every time I write a blog post, but it’s true. I can’t believe it’s April already! I only have a few favorites for March because frankly, I didn’t do very many new things this month. Anyway, I hope you enjoy!

1. The Chemistry Between Us by Larry Young and Brian Alexander

For the month of March, I was (still am) reading The Chemistry Between Us by Larry Young and Brian Alexander which is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a book about the science of why we fall in love and have sex and love our children, etc. If you don’t mind reading about testing the sexual hormones of rats and lots of science terms about the brain, the book is really interesting. The authors made the book fairly easy to understand and it’s written with a good balance of pure science and comedic relief. I would highly recommend this book if you’re interested in books based on real scientific research!

2. BaubleBar

I have been overly obsessed with wearing fun and over the top earrings lately so naturally my new favorite place to shop has been BaubleBar. They have such cute, bright and quirky jewelry and LOTS of rainbow pieces. I may or may not have purchased 4 pairs of rainbow earrings for summer but it’s only a problem if you make it one.

3. Fabletics

I recently signed up for Fabletics (literally 2 weeks ago) but so far have really loved the pieces I got. I needed to overhaul my gym clothes because I figured at 24 years old, it’s time to give up my sorority t-shirts and wear adult gym clothes. I bought a bunch of tops, some were mesh and some were the spandex material and I really love both! They fit really well and are breathable. I also bought 2 pairs of the Powerhold leggings and am OBSESSED with them. They fit SO SO SO well. They don’t fall down, ever. Literally ever. I can’t believe it. Anyway, obviously I highly recommend these pants and I’m looking forward to getting a few more pieces!

4. Pointed Toe Mules

I just bought a pair of these from Urban Outfitters in a pretty lavender color (as seen in the featured image, and currently on sale!) and honestly, I really love them. I had the same pair in a velvet leopard print which was to die for, so I knew for spring I would want to get them in the lavender. The style is so classic and the color is extremely wearable even though it’s pretty bright.

5. Maren Morris – GIRL

I would 100% be lying to you if I said I didn’t listen to this album on repeat 24/7 since the day it came out. I don’t know what it is, but I am in love with this album. I just feel like she was very real and honest and fun with this album. It’s got a nice variety of fun pop songs and sweet love songs which is what I love. I only knew a few of her songs before this album, but I’m a huge fan of Maren Morris now!

6. Rosehip Seed Oil

I jumped on the bandwagon with this since a friend of mine recommended it to me and showed me how much of a difference it made for her skin. I’ve only been using it for about 2 weeks now, but I already love how soft and smooth my skin feels. I’m hoping that it will help with some of the acne scarring I have, but either way I love how my skin looks and feels now so I am definitely going to keep using this! I got mine from Amazon!

7. Baiting Hollow Farm and Vineyard

Over the weekend, my boyfriend and I took a trip out to the Baiting Hollow Farm and Vineyard to do a tasting and enjoy the beautiful weather we had. This vineyard had such a great atmosphere and I was very happy to spend the afternoon there! There was lots different wines to try, live music and lots of people. Maybe it was the sun finally coming out, but it was such a great experience to sit outside and drink some wine and people watch. I highly recommend this vineyard, but beware that there will be lots of girl groups dancing and drinking wine on a Saturday here!

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

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Fashion

How to Style: Early Spring Outfits

Now that it’s officially spring, I’m working on showing you some more colorful spring content. I have been dreaming about some warm sunny weather since literally December so this new season is a dream come true. This spring, for me at least, is all about color. All the colors and light neutrals. I wanted to start off by showing you all how I like to style my outfits for early spring when it’s still a little chilly out but the sun is still shining!

Outfit #1:

To start things off, I’m sharing this cute and feminine pink outfit. I love this pink sweater because it’s light weight and I love the color! It’s such a pretty salmon pink. I kept it very simple with a pair of jeans and this pretty trench that you all know I’m obsessed with. This embellished mules added a little more spring flare!

Top: Mango / Coat: Something Nay / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Mango / Coat: Something Nay / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Mango / Coat: Something Nay / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Outfit # 2:

Sticking with my bright color theme for the spring, I also am really into colorblocking so I wanted to pair this gorgeous royal purple sweater with my favorite pink trench. Pink and purple is one of my favorite color combinations for the spring. Paired with white jeans, it’s a prefect transitional outfit for days when it’s bright and sunny but you still need some layers for warmth.

Top: Topshop / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Urban Outfitters

Top: Topshop / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Urban Outfitters

Top: Topshop / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Urban Outfitters

Outfit # 3:

Another combination I love for colorblocking is purple and green! It’s so pretty and if you do it right, you won’t even look like the hulk! With such bright colors like this, I think keeping them separate really helps so I wore the same purple sweater but paired it with green heels instead. With pastels, these colors are really pretty layered as a top and coat or with wide leg trousers.


Top: Topshop / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Topshop / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Topshop / Jeans: American Eagle / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Outfit #4:

Finally, I can’t tell you enough how much I love this bright green! It’s such a fun color for the spring because it basically matches the grass and I love that. It also pairs well with lots of other colors, but is also a great piece to wear on it’s own. This is another favorite of mine that I am going to wear for as long as possible.

Top: Something Navy / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Something Navy / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

Top: Something Navy / Coat: Something Navy / Jeans: Topshop / Shoes: Sam Edelman

I hope you enjoyed this How to Style and let me know in the comments what some of your favorite early spring outfits are!

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

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Lifestyle

Ballin’ on a Budget: No Shopping Update

So my friends, it’s over now. My one month challenge of no shopping. Let me tell you, it was not as hard as I thought it would be! I’m pretty proud of myself because I really thought I was going to struggle through this month but I feel like I came out knowing what I can do to keep myself from over spending on clothing.

One of the things that really helped me feel like I didn’t want or need to shop over this past month was keeping myself busy with other activities. Over this past month, I went skiing, went to a brewery, took a cooking class and celebrated St. Patrick’s day. I spent my weekends being out and about and I’d only ever really look at my phone in the morning when I woke up or right before bed. I think being so busy over the last month was something that really made a huge difference in not feeling like I wanted to shop. I honestly didn’t have time to sit down and try to shop!

I also focused on my main goal for this month. I wanted to save money to spend on a vacation with my boyfriend and for my upcoming trips because having experiences is much more important to me than how I look. Being knowledgeable about the world and the different things it has to offer is what makes me feel my best so focusing on my goal of saving for my travel plans was a really big help because I knew I was working toward something that was going to leave me feeling richer than new clothes ever could.

One last thing that helped me was knowing that I would treat myself to something after the month was over. Before I started I decided that I really need some new work out clothes and sneakers because my health and exercising is really important to me and it’s one of my favorites parts of my routine. Keeping in mind that I could reward myself with some new sneakers and a few pairs of new gym leggings was something that really helped to keep me focused on not spending on other things.

However, I will say that the weather getting warmer this past month was something that did not help me! The thought of transitioning my closet into all the pretty spring colors and thinking about what I’d want to wear on vacation really made me want to shop for spring clothes. The change of seasons was probably the one thing that really made a struggle because I was getting so tired of winter when I started this journey. But keeping my goals in mind was definitely more helpful!

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

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Travel

My Weekend Ski Trip

This past weekend, I went on my very first ski trip and thought I’d write about it and share a little bit of what I brought with me. It as such an awesome trip and I was surprisingly good at skiing! It inspired me to plan a few more trips over the next few months so get ready for a few more packing guides and travel posts coming out.

To start, this was definitely a weekend to be one with nature and hangout with friends. So with that being said, it was the most low maintenance weekend I’ve probably ever had in my life. I brought exactly the right amount of clothes that I would need, no make up and very minimal toiletries. I didn’t want to over pack since it was going to be a weekend of just being outside mostly. We went up to Windham Resort to go skiing and it was such a great time. We stayed in an Airbnb instead of at the resort and it was definitely a great idea because of the location and price. Airbnb is something I never really use but now I’m definitely looking into it for future trips because we had such a great experience. I can’t wait to go again!

As far as clothing goes, it wasn’t very cold this weekend in the mountains, only about 30 degrees so I brought light clothing. I packed some cotton long sleeves and leggings to wear under my ski clothes along with my ski pants, a sweatshirt and then my winter coat. However, because it was so warm, I eventually took the sweatshirt off completely and was perfectly fine! I also kept gloves with me and brought a hat and scarf that I ended up not even needing. We also went out at night to speakeasy and the next morning went to a brewery for lunch so for those, I brought with me my Jamie Jeans from Topshop and another long sleeve t-shirt and a big cozy sweater from Nordstrom. I kept it very casual and was really happy with what I brought. I definitely did not need anything else!

For my toiletries, I kept it simple with the basics, body wash, lotion, face wash, toothbrush, contacts/glasses, etc. However, I made sure to bring a good moisturizer and my serums because I knew that the higher altitude and colder weather might affect my skin differently as well as the water there too! I noticed my face reacted pretty well to keeping my routine the same, thankfully! I brought the same items that I mentioned in my Skincare Routine post, linked here.

On our second day, we headed toward Cooperstown, NY and stopped by the Ommegang Brewery which was such an awesome experience if you love craft beer and Game of Thrones! They’ve got tons of GoT themed beers as well as a few others that were so good. My favorite was the Rosetta which was a sour beer infused with cherry and it was the right amount of sweet and sour but I got a flight and really enjoyed all of them. They also have a gift shop that sells all kinds of cool merch including GoT mugs and growlers and you can even buy their beers bottled.

If you’re ever looking for an easy weekend trip, this was definitely a good one to do. There’s so much going on in New York that I feel like I forget about. This year, I’ve got all kinds of trips planned to explore more of New York!

P.S. Keep up with me on instagram: @karenmauritzenn

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