Wednesday, June 21, 2017

CONQUERING YOUR QUARTER-LIFE CRISIS

Kali Rogers is an online life coach for girls. She started the company Blush, which is an online community with life coaches that can support women via Skype and web journals. I heard about Blush a couple years ago through the hilarious site Betches and returned to it this fall when life got tough and I needed some support from a wise outsider. Kali helped me evaluate what I needed and wanted in life and helped me to make the appropriate changes to get a new job, move, and go back to school for my teaching credential. She guided me to learning things about myself I never knew.

Kali recently wrote a book called “Conquering Your Quarter-Life Crisis: How to Get Your Shit Together In Your 20s.” When I heard the title I thought it could not be more intrigued. That’s exactly what Blush is for. Helping people through the very real and very scary quarter life crisis.

I read the book in less than 24 hours. It encouraged me to stay in my own lane and stop
worrying about what everyone else is doing. It includes personal anecdotes from Kali’s own struggle to get past the quarter life crisis and wise guidance from these personal experiences. Throughout this period of life I have felt very alone. Although I have had support from family and friends, I was under a false impression that no one else has experienced the post college graduation years where you are trying to figure out “how to adult.” Picking a career, filing taxes, looking for somewhere to live, and deciding what you want in a relationship is not a simple task. And this book makes me realize that this is something everybody experiences.

              I recommend this book for anyone who needs to figure out how to get their crap together. It won’t do it for you, but it will give you the tools to successfully go after what you want and get through the post-grad funk. A paperback or Kindle version is available on Amazon.

Note: Although Kali Rogers (author of this bad-ass book) was my confidant for a rough six months of my life, this blog post is not sponsored by her. I am writing this because I truly believe in Kali and her expertise in the book and on Blush. However, the link to her book is from Amazon, where I am a proud affiliate, to provide a means for Kick Back With Cate to earn money from advertising by linking to Amazon.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

JAMES TAYLOR #THEBACHELORETTE

I have reached the point of the season of The Bachelorette where I lose interest. The getting to know you stage is over, but the true connections have not yet formed. While I can harp on how much Lee hates everyone and everyone hates Lee and I love Adam, it is better to just focus on someone from last season.

James Taylor was one of my favorites last season on The Bachelorette. He was the adorable country singer who formed fast friendships with the other guys. He appeared to be a stand up gentleman and after chatting with him, I can vouch for that.

Since appearing on The Bachelorette, James Taylor has been working on his own EP, which is coming out soon. He has also found love via Bumble and continues to strengthen his friendships with The Bachelorette guys.

Prior to going on The Bachelorette, James Taylor was working at a pest control company in Atlanta with some of his best friends. However, these guys were all married and James Taylor felt a bit left out. After some weird Bumble experiences, such as a girl kissing him, then going to the bathroom and never returning, one of his friends applied for him to go on the show. The casting department began calling James Taylor and the rest was history.

While James Taylor did not find love, he did find true friendship. One of his favorite connections he formed was with Wells. While the two are polar opposites, it is the late night hot tub tears that brought them together. The guys bonded over the fact that they were in the same situation, without phones or cable, and not much to turn to but each other.

While he may have played up his Bachelorette mentality upon leaving the show, he ultimately found a woman that brings out the best in him. The way he talked about his new girlfriend gave me hope that there are truly genuine men out there. He admires her no BS attitude and the way that they can talk about anything.

Ultimately, being on the show taught James Taylor a lot about life. While he is still the southern gentleman he was before, he now has unique, worldly experiences that most of us don’t get. Whether it was crying in a hot tub with Wells in Pennslyvania or playing games in an Argentina hotel room, James Taylor had the experience of a life time.

Be sure to follow James Taylor on his social medias to follow the production and release of his upcoming EP.

IG @jamesmccoytaylor
Twitter @james_mccoy_t

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

LOVED + BLESSED REVIEW

Each month I receive a box of love and encouragement on my front porch. This month's Loved and Blessed Box focused on creating your sanctuary. This will allow you a place to take a break and fill your heart with God's word and time with Him.


This awesome box from Loved and Blessed included a mini poster, a reminder sticker, a scripture card, a devotional book (Encouraging Words for Women), a pashmina (to remind you that you are royalty), and an encouragement kit. I plan on sharing the encouragement kit with a young lady in my small group at church who is new in her faith.




Loved and Blessed is a Christian subscription box service with a goal to help women share their testimony. For only $19.99/month (even cheaper if you buy in bulk!), each box includes a mini poster, reminder sticker, scripture card, and small gift. 

I enjoy receiving the Loved and Blessed Box because it provides me with encouraging reminders to remain strong in my faith. It is different than any other box I have received. It is full of meaning, heart, and joy. Place your order quickly to receive your own box of encouragement next month!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

BACHELORETTE IN THE MIND OF A MAN

I was disappointed that there was no Bachelorette on this week, but happy to see that the Warriors won the NBA Championship. Plain and simple I am just not a fan of Lebron. Because there was no new episode, there obviously cannot be a recap. With my upcoming Bachelor Nation interview not yet ready to share, I reached out to my good friend, comedian Mitchell Virzi, to get his thoughts on the show. Mitchell is a man’s man and had never watched the show going into writing this post. I had him watch episode 1 of Rachel’s season. Hilarity ensued.
Before the Show:
I’ll admit I was reluctant to watch “The Bachelorette”, possibly because reality television is a guilty pleasure, and most dudes do not indulge. However, once I came to terms with myself and swallowed the elixir that is “pointless entertainment”, I found myself intrigued with the show, even gabbing with Cate about who I thought would win. Why?
We love love. The idea of it, the journey to find it, the woes of losing it, the moment one has found it. Love is, and always will be hypnotizing to its many seekers. And the primary audience of “The Bachelorette” is the most hopeless of romantics (teenage to young adult females). If you don’t believe me, the first two advertisements I saw were ClearBlue Pregnancy Tests and BJ’s Restaurants. ABC knows how to subliminally message. Speaking of subliminal messages, my brothers and I (The Virzi Triplets) will be on ABC’s “The Gong Show” on June 29 at 10pm!
The Bachelorette, despite its heightened reality, does parallel the real dating world in many ways. For example, every guy (except Whaboom!) can be the perfect “Thanksgiving boyfriend”. The one you take home to your parent’s house, he wears the collared shirt with a pastel sweater and he tucks it into his khakis; he is pleasant, cordial, “on his best behavior” to everyone at the gathering. It is extremely easy for men to do, but quite inauthentic. You see that with the first round of interviews where they visit some of the bachelors at their homes. When the cameras on around their family, they are a total catch, but when they interact with the other men in the house, their true colors show (cough, Josiah, cough).
There was one part of the show that bothered me. During the meeting with the Bridesmaids, which is exactly how I imagine every girl’s night is like, one girl said something along the lines of: “So that you can get the fairytale you rightfully deserve.” Let’s be clear, no one deserves a fairytale. That is B.S. that Disney has been brainwashing girls into believing (for profit) for the past 60 years without any regard to the psychological implications it has. This idea of “deserving a fairytale” is the foundation in which bride-zillas are created. As a guy this is a legitimate concern, because this “fairytale or bust” thought process is toxic. It will never be perfect, and accepting that fact will make you happier, I promise. Love is built on imperfections and compromises that both partners share. I know the girls that read this blog are totally cool, so it isn’t a problem, just wanted to give some Y-chromosome perspective.
Anywho…back to the show.
Pickup lines matter. The Bachelorette is like Tinder: funny opening lines trump being boring and respectful. I imagine The Bachelor is like Bumble and the girls only open with the line “Hey what’s up?” Sorry that’s a bitter, single guy inside joke. But the modern dating scene doesn’t have time for boring, you need to stand out. Much like The Bachelorette in the show, there are far too many options, and if you aren’t bringing something new to the table, then you are irrelevant. For example, the guy who dressed up as a penguin made me so angry as a man, I wanted to punch him through the screen. He was willing to humiliate himself publicly to get noticed, he should lose his man card. But instead he got a rose. In some twisted way it is more endearing like “look what this guy is willing to do just for me” instead of what it really is, which is pathetic. But dating is a risk-taker’s game and it always will be.
Despite the amount of times I cringed watching this, The Bachelorette is proof that men have not evolved. One look at all the men hovering around Rachel trying to talk to her is enough evidence. We are the same knuckle-dragging horndogs willing to do what’s necessary for a desirable lady, but instead of fighting for dominance, we have catch phrases, costumes, and fancy suits to win her heart over.
Thoughts While Watching:
Chris Harrison has the world’s easiest job.
31 years old? She’s a little old don’t you think? (KIDDING! Side note: I am a comedian…please take no offense to anything I say!)
When she lost on the previous season of The Bachelor, do you think she said OBJECTION!
It’s weird that the guys already know so much about Rachel and she knows nothing about them. Outside of the show, that would be considered “stalking.” But add a couple cameras and it’s a quality primetime programming!
Instead of a Bachelorette that has everything going for them, they should pick a single mother from Teen Mom. The ratings would triple.
Alex the Meathead Nerd: I like him, reminds me a bit of myself. So he is going to lose.
Side note: The B-Camera shots they make these guys record (Ex: Alex lifting weights in one hand, and lifting a book in the other) are so terribly cringeworthy I want to punch the producers through the screen.
Lucas “Whaboom”: Immediately hated. He is the punchable douche from every 80’s movie. The type of guy that did well in high school because girls enjoyed his outgoing personality, but they would eventually dump when they found him hooking up with their best friend. I hate to admit this, but this would be a great guy to get a beer with. He came in with a catch phrase and matching t-shirts and regardless of the outcome of this show, will make more money in show business than I ever will.
Blake the Personal Trainer: This guy did the impossible, he out-douched Lucas "Whaboom."
Josiah the Prosecutor: Modest, hard-working, family oriented. Seems like an all-around great dude. Rachel would be stupid not to pick him. If she doesn’t, I will.

Will the Sales Manager doing Urekel elicited a response of visceral cringe. This is proof that guys are willing to do anything to get women, including throwing their manhood away on National Television. I hope he loses his job as sales manager so he can focus on finding a spine.

Brady the Male Model literally breaking the ice. As a performer, I respect the commitment to the bit.
The ventriloquist, an ambulance, and a grown male in a penguin costume. This show should be called “Cultural Anthropology: Proof that guys will do anything for a desirable woman.”
The guys all lurking around Rachel waiting to talk to her is proof of evolution. Literally nothing has changed in 30,000 years.
Lucas making it to the second round was the producer’s choice. Not Rachel’s.
Who I want to win: Peter
Who will actually win: Josiah

For more of Mitchell Virzi, check him out @mitchellvirzi on Twitter & Instagram. Also be sure to subscribe to his podcast “Virzi Triplets” on iTunes for an inside look into the lives of three stay at home sons every Monday morning. Lastly, be sure to tune in to The Gong Show on ABC Thursday June 29th at 10pm to see The Virzi Triplets embrace primetime television for the first time in 15 years.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

LIFE UPDATE

Hi sweet friends! Remember me? Cate?

I know I have fallen behind in my writing schedule. I used to post nearly everyday, but have been struggling to push content every 3-4 days now. I miss spending hours on this page and am sad that due to other things happening in my life, this dream of mine has had to be set aside.

So where have I been?
For starters, I am working a full time job at a high school for at-risk youth. Not only is the type of work I do tiring (although extremely fun and I love everyday) it is emotionally draining. Sometimes the stories I hear and the situations I deal with cause me to get in my car at 4:30pm each day and weep for the life these children have lived. However, this exposure has taught me a new level of gratitude and that the only person who can judge is God.

Secondly, I am going to school full time. Yes, working full time and school full time. I am working on my teaching credential in mild/moderate special education which includes a Masters, as well as finishing my Masters in Autism.

Add to all of that the regular entities of life--friendship, family, my small group at church, my life group at church, and moving in a couple weeks and before I know it I have let the product reviews, Bachelorette recaps, and outfit ideas slip away.

I have some exciting stuff lined up for the coming weeks...I promise. And while yes I intended to write most of today but spent most of today studying for my CSET and trying to get ahead in my courses, it will get done and it will be posted. I have an interview with a Bachelor Nation favorite coming, a review on a life changing book, and a BLOOMING giveaway. I will finish up June's editorial calendar, but in order to feel less guilt on myself, come July I will only be posting 3 days per week. Anything extra is a bonus.

So while today's potential blog post was "Must Have Travel Items" it all comes down to "Must Have Sanity." I'll see you all Tuesday with a Bachelor surprise.

XO
Cate

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

SUN SAFETY TIPS

With summer approaching quickly, sun safety is at the top of my priority list.

Please protect your skin while spending time outdoors. I don't care if you think you look stupid wearing a hat covered in white lotion under an umbrella at the beach. You're going to look more stupid covered in stitches and scars after having biopsy after biopsy. If you want a glowing tan, get a spray tan.

This weekend kicks off summer and will be one many people spend outside at the beach, the pool, and in the backyard barbecuing. Work Monday morning will be a lot less fun if you are sunburnt or melanoma is slowly brewing.

According to the American Cancer Society, one American dies every hour from skin cancer. This year there will be 73, 780 new cases of malignant melanoma and over 2 million new cases of basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers.

Think you're invincible? "But that will NEVER happen to me! I just need a tan for this party Friday night that the guy I like will be at!" I thought so too. Until I got a call from my dermatologist a couple years ago that one of those many moles I had removed the week prior was Melanoma 1A and more would have to be deeper removed.

I am extremely pale...it's like I'm Irish or something. People always have had a comment about how white I am. I never cared about it, but the comments of so many people made me feel like it was something I was supposed to be insecure about. The second I turned 18 I started going to tanning beds almost everyday. (In California, you have to be 18 or have parents consent to enter a tanning bed.) In the summer I would put baby oil on my body after reading on Google that it would make me tan faster. (It just made me turn red faster.) After about a year, the frequent tanning died down, but I would still go through phases of tanning the weeks leading up to various events up until I realized the damage I was doing by having my shoulder cut into and stitched up. Looking at that scar is a constant reminder of the foolish mistake I made and a daily reminder to lather up with SPF.

Skin cancer is easily avoidable. When outdoors, cover your body, spend time in the shade, and wear sunscreen. Be sure to apply every couple hours or after being in the water.

While applying sunscreen, check yourself for abnormal moles. Not sure what to look for? Follow the ABCDE method: Asymmetry, Border irregularity, Color, Diameter, and Evolution. If you see something out of the ordinary, schedule an appointment with a dermatologist. Early detection can save your life.

Please be safe this summer. Wear sunblock, do not drink and drive, practice water safety, and do not keep children and animals in the hot car!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

BACHELORETTE WEEK 3

My 60 year old dad watched The Bachelorette with me last night. Here's the recap, straight from his mouth...

“Tickle monster?”

“Who is this guy?” (on Whaboom)

“Ahh don’t be the guy who doesn’t kiss her. Don’t be like Wells! Ah yes Wells the DJ from Nashville!”

“Do you think it’s weird making out with 15 guys in one night?”

“Open casting call…Cate you should go.”

“She’s going to give the rose to Alex….see I was right! I don’t need Reality Steve! That’s his name right?”

“Adam seems nice.”

“Keep my name out yo mouth!!!!!!!!!!”

Monday, June 5, 2017

GLAMBOT - SUMMER MAKEUP

Now that summer is here, it can be difficult to keep your makeup from melting off your face. With the cost of great skincare products though, it can be risky to something new. However, GlamBot allows you to purchase makeup products at a fraction of the price. 

These products are my go to this summer:


Smashbox Photo Finish Primer
Cover FX Custom Infusion Drops
Clinique Acne Solutions
Nars Blush Bronzer Face Duo Orgasm and Laguna
Smashbox Brow Tech Matte Pencil Taupe
MAC Lipstick Among the Fireflies
Maybelline Mascara
Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray

For the next 72 hours, KBWC readers can get 30% off their GlamBot purchases with the code CATE at checkout! 

Doing spring cleaning? Sell some of your extra makeup here through GlamBot too!

FTC Disclosure: Some of these products were sent to me courtesy of GlamBot in exchange for a review. All opinions are honest and my own. 

Sunday, June 4, 2017

LOVE UNCOMPLICATED

Life and love can be really difficult. But it is important to keep a positive outlook and not to take anything too seriously. Sarah, blogger at Love Uncomplicated, does just that as she helps women grow in their relationships with a humorous, Biblical perspective.

Sarah began her blog when she was in the stir crazy moments of early motherhood. With a combination of her faith in Jesus Christ and her own personal experiences, Sarah helps readers tackle love and relationships. Her favorite post she has written focuses on clear communication in relationships through an anecdote about tacos.

In a world that focuses on "following your heart" Sarah's life advice to not follow what you want all the time provoked me to look deeper within myself. "Temptations, fears, impulses...they don't always tell you the truth. Having the power to say NO to your feelings is extremely powerful and freeing," said Sarah.

My two favorite things to ask other bloggers are what motivates them when they have writer's block and what advice they would give new bloggers. When faced with writer's block, Sarah has two great suggestions. "1. Filling up on life...taking a walk with my family, cooking something new, etc. 2. Writing really, really fast about anything." And her advice for new bloggers? "Please do not feel like you have to do #AllTheThings! There is a ton of information out there about the right way to blog, and a lot of it can be helpful, but YOU get to decide how you want to do this thing."

Outside of being a boss babe blogger, Sarah enjoys spending time in her Northwoods home with her hubby and kiddos reading books and eating pizza. (My kinda chick!) She also loves beach days on rare warm summer days and bubble baths.

For more of Sarah, visit her blog Love Uncomplicated, or follow her on the social media listed below:
Instagram: @loveuncomplicated 
Facebook: @loveuncomplicated
Pinterest: username: LUBlog 

Saturday, June 3, 2017

MAY FAVORITES

5 of my favorite things in May:




Whaboom Guy

Most Girls by Hailee Steinfeld




FTC Disclosure: Kick Back With Cate is an Amazon Affiliate. Any links to Amazon have potential to provide financial support for Kick Back With Cate.