May 21, 2017

Why I Deleted Social Media


Recently, I deleted all of my personal social media accounts. I also deleted Twitter and Facebook, used for my YouTube. This might surprise you, coming from someone who makes money off of social media. As with anything in life, I think social media comes with many pros and cons. I am grateful for social media because it has given me an awesome platform to share my passions and of course, Jesus! However, there are negative habits and tendencies in my life that have grown from social media. Recently, I have done a lot of deep thinking on life in general.

In today's society everyone is obsessed with knowing what others are doing and where they are. For example, the Kardashians are rich becuase everyone is obsessed with their life, so much so they have a TV show. Also, let's not forget the Find My Friends app. I would much rather influence the world than be fixated on what everyone else is doing. If you aren't working to achieve your own dreams, then someone else is just going to hire you to achieve theirs. I don't want that. I recently came home from college and ran into an acquaintance from high school at the store. We were catching up, and she knew all these things about my life, just from my Instagram account. I had not talked to this person in over a year and it made me realize, social media makes your life everyone's business. I would love to talk with a friend and show them photos and tell them stories, but I do not want that happening from social media. I want to experience the personal interaction and bond with that person. Social media takes that away.

Another thing you need to realize is that social media only shows the positive and best parts of a person's life. I am sure my relationship looks picture perfect on Instagram, I spent time coming up with cute puns for each photo I posted. Just like any relationship, we have our fights and sometimes it gets ugly. You do not see that on my squares of Instagram. Generally, I am a pretty optimistic and joyful person, like my social media displays. However I do have severe anxiety and ADD that I struggle with daily; very few people know this. Humans put the things they're proud of on display for everyone to see; not the bad ones. Why would you want to highlight the negatives of you life? Social media creates an illusion. I am just as guilty of doing this as anyone else. I do not want people to think I have my life together, and I do not want to put that image out there for younger girls. Hopefully, my posts like these will help fight the "picture perfect" fantasy.

With reality being hidden, I have recently been struggling with the sin of comparison. I will see photos on Instagram, and compare my body or relationship to other people, and that is only hurting me. The popular page on Instagram is chalk-full of these images becuase that's what teenage girls fantasize about. Comparison is the ultimate thief of joy. Everyone was created for something different and has a different story, so you can never compare yourself to someone else. Just like I don't want to compare myself to others, I also don't want people comparing themselves to me. I have a separate piece that I wrote on comparison, and I am still debating on posting it.

I would start and end my day with checking social media, mainly Instagram and Snapchat. That is definitely not something I want. My goal is to wake up each morning and instantly go into prayer, a much better and rewarding use of time. Whenever I got bored or procrastinated, I would just start scrolling through Instagram, reply to my snapchats, look at snapchat stories, and now Instagram has even added a stories feature. I felt like I had to finish scrolling through my Instagram feed and keep my streaks on snapchat before I went to bed. There are so many people that have fallen into this routine of knowing what is going on in everyone else's lives, and I want out.

Now, social media is great for businesses. Businesses have the opportunity to have their photos intertwined with photos from their customers' personal lives. People are getting advertisements thrown at them, and they don't even realize it. Mark Zuckerberg is a genius, really. Recently, I have been trying to grow my social media through what other blogs recommend, but I've gotten nowhere. I am taking a new approach and posting what I want to post. Despite everything I have said, social media gives me a job and a platform to do what I love. I have been blinded by this cycle and happily using social media since 8th grade, that's 6 years. I am glad that people enjoy social media, and I hope they shall keep doing whatever floats their boats! This is how social media has affected my life, and what I have chosen to do about it.

This started as a personal entry in my journal, but I do have a lot of strong thoughts, and this could help others struggling with the same things I was. God has showed me that my struggles can be a good thing, and it's better to share my life lessons with everyone. Not only am I bettering myself, but hopefully someone else can benefit from my advice. Humans go through phases throughout their entire lifetime. I hope social media is just another phase. I know that this post was heavy, but I hope it helped someone in a positive way.

xx,
Daria

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May 16, 2017

Denim Mini Skirt in ATL











top: american eagle {similar} // skirt: forever 21 // bralette: victoria's secret {similar} // sandals: american eagle // necklace: kendra scott // watch: daniel wellington // bracelets: alex + ani, boutique // shades: forever 21 // bag: kate spade {similar}

This is my best friend Stella from Chapel Hill!! She came to stay with me in Atlanta for a week as she has the past 3 summers. Funny story, Stella and I became friends when she used to make YouTube videos and are so similar that we've stayed pals. 

I've done a little bit of shopping lately and found some pieces that I love!! I found this top on sale at American Eagle for $13 and love the simple lace detailing. You might be able to find it in store, but I have linked similar ones in the image carousel below. Stop what you're doing and go buy this zipper-front denim skirt, it is so great and versatile. It comes in a bunch of other colors and olive, and it's only $14.90. I also picked up these sandals for under $20 in-store at American Eagle recently, and I've been loving them (I didn't have a pair of black sandals). My old sunglasses stretched out and these were only $5.90. I always find myself wearing this necklace, watch, and these bracelets: daily essentials. 

xx,
Daria

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May 15, 2017

8 Mindlessly Simple Ways to Make Some Extra Money


  1. Sell your old clothes. I clean out my closet at the beginning of every season. I try each item on to make sure it still fits and ask myself if I really wear this piece. I created an Instagram account just for selling old clothes (@dariasmithshop), and I use the app Poshmark. You can sign up with code BONCX on your mobile phone for a benefit. I've seen success through both mediums. If you flip all of your hangers in your closet backwards, then you will face your hangers the right way when you wear an item. This is a simple hack to see what you truly wear in your closet.
  2. Babysit or petsit. Put an ad in your local newspaper or ask your parents to tell their friends. People only need these services occasionally, so it's a great way to make some extra cash when you have downtime. 
  3. Monetize your Pinterest account. I like to pin items from stores that I like in case I want to purchase them later on. It takes little to no time to monetize the links attached to your pins. I use a site called ShopStyle Collective, I think anyone can sign up. 
  4. Shop with eBates. Sign up for eBates through this link and save money every time you make an online purchase. Stores give anywhere from 2-8% back, and some days stores will give double the percentage back. This is a great site if you online shop a lot, why lose extra $ if you don't have to? 
  5. Amazon Prime. Seriously, I use Amazon Prime for everything; sign up here. It is only $50 a year for free 2-day shipping, and there is a free trial available (which means absolutely free for a period of time). I definitely get my $50 use out of this service, and save a ton of money not paying for shipping elsewhere. 
  6. Sell old electronics. I am sure we all have old electronics laying around the house that we're never going to use again. They are most likely just taking up space. USell lets you send in old electronics and make money off of them. 
  7. Answer surveys online. You do not make a ton of money from this, but I like to use Opinion Outpost if I really have nothing to do, then I am making some cash. However, just know that every little bit of money adds up over time. 
  8. Become a mystery shopper. Get paid to shop!!! They also do this for restaurants and you get paid to eat food.  
Thanks for reading friends! I had this post highly requested and thought I would share some of the simple ways I make money to help y'all out. 

xx,
Daria

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May 6, 2017

Trendy Sandals That Won't Break the Bank Under $20!



Target is my favorite place to buy shoes.. well maybe anything!! They get you every time becuase it's a one-stop shop for groceries, home + office supplies, clothes, and anything you may need. You go to Target to buy groceries, but then come out with unnecessary impulse buys (for me clothes and all the great things in the dollar section). On topic, they have the best shoes. I have been buying shoes for at least 8 years, and they hold up very well for the price.

Here's a fun fact: my college town does not have a Target, and I really did not realize how much I (think) I need Target in my life. Every time I go home or to a town with a Target, a purchase is made. Target is known to make affordable dupes for designer shoes such as Steve Madden and Sam Edelman. Look here before you drop a ton of $$ on the latest and greatest anything. Linked in the image carousel below are my top picks for their spring/summer shoes.


I have been wanting a pair of the white VANS canvas slip-on for a while but just don't feel like spending that kind of money, college student balling on a budget here. Target has this great dupe, which are just as cute and half the price. I will most likely be purchasing these wedges next time there is a sale becuase I am obsessed, and for some reason I could not link them in the image carousel. I also love these lace-up heels and have been debating on these sandals since last season. I just feel like I have too many pairs of flat sandals to buy more at the moment. 

xx,
Daria

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May 3, 2017

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island


Driftwood Beach
Driftwood Beach is breathtaking; I've never seen anything like it. If you've never been, I 10/10 recommend going. Driftwood is located on Jekyll Island, right next to St. Simons and the rest of the golden isles. Admission on to Jekyll is $6, but parking is free. On the way to Driftwood, you will pass the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. We did not have time to make it here today, but it looks pretty great. We spent the whole day here and watched the sun set. Driftwood is only a 2 hour drive from Statesboro, and so worth the trip. If you enjoy dogs, you'll see several here on a nice day.












Dining

Sal's is on St. Simons, but we pass the golden isles heading back to Statesboro, and it's about half an hour from Driftwood. No photo can do this pizza justice, it was ah-mazing. This is a very family friendly place, and seriously so good. We got an XL margarita pizza (my fave) to split between 3 very hungry people, and the prices were reasonable. 


This was my first time at Driftwood, and I've only been to the golden isles a handful of times. If you're looking for another spot to grab a bite on St. Simons, check out Brogen's. Any recommendations for places I should go next in this area would be greatly appreciated.

xx,
Daria

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Apr 29, 2017

Saturday Shopping: 100 Beautiful Pieces For Your Summer Wardrobe



A bunch of my favorite stores (here is a post with where I most often shop) just added new items to their summer lines! Here is another mass shopping post becuase there are so many new items!! I have added a few image carousels becuase the first one filled up. After I finished the second one, I realized I had more items to add, and it was a pain so there's 3. Long story short, blogger did not agree with me today. Enjoy my friends!! 



Thanks for the read, I love you all!! Thanks for following my content and letting me turn my passion into a job. I truly can't thank you all enough. 

xx,
Daria

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Apr 28, 2017

Blue Ridge Day Trip: Where to Eat + Things to Do



My parents have been taking me to Blue Ridge ever since I can remember. There is so much to do and see in this quaint little town! You can also check out this post for some more Blue Ridge options.

Dining

Toccoa Riverside Restaurant
My family has been coming here for years. You can dine outside with a great view of the Toccoa river. I'm a big fan of the fish, salads, and sandwiches. This is a very family-friendly restaurant.





Southern Charm
We did not eat here on this trip, but have several times in the past. They have the best Southern food with great fried chicken and sweet tea, another family friendly location.



The Sweet Shoppe
Aw, I love this little place!! Their cupcakes have won many awards and are a winner of Food Network's Cupcake Wars.




Things to Do

Mercier Orchards 
This is a must-do!! Try to come here in Fall and the views will blow your mind; North Georgia is absolutely breathtaking in the fall time. You can pick apples, and other kinds of fruit in the orchards, depending on the time of year. Stop by the bakery and pick up some goodies. My favorites are the apple cider, apple cider donuts, and apple fritters. The fried pies are another one of my family's favorites. My family has made several fall trips here since I was young.



Peep at some of the gorgeous fall views



Shopping Downtown
From boutique to outdoor to antique stores, downtown Blue Ridge has it all along with more places to eat. Some of my favorite boutique are Juliana's and Downtown Abby's. I also love Blue Ridge Adventure Wear- there are a ton of outdoor stores downtown, but this one is by far my favorite. Start at one end of the street and work your way down to see all the shops Blue Ridge has to offer. 









go dawgs!! who's with me?

There are lost of opportunities here for tubing, kayaking, canoeing, and hiking in the warmer months- 10/10 recommend. I would also L. L. Beanery if you want a great coffee shop. Are there any other place I should check out in Blue Ridge?? (leave me a comment)

I just love creating these adventure/travel (whatever you want to call them) posts! I am always trying to find the best way to spend my time and money when I go places, and I'd like to think that I do a pretty good job, so why not share my findings with others?? Let me know where I should go next (in Georgia).

xx,
Daria

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Apr 25, 2017

My Testimony: Why I Am a YoungLife Leader


About a month ago, I became a YoungLife leader. Throughout high school, I was not involved in YoungLife, but God called me to get involved the second I came to college. I wasn't sure why, I just kinda went with it. I went through sorority recruitment and he showed me that he wanted me to go somewhere else when I did not receive a bid. This was my plan for years, so I was definitely devastated at first, but my plan didn't matter. God has a distinct plan and purpose for all of us. We may not realize it at the time, but he sees the big picture when we only understand tiny details. Throughout middle school and most of high school, I had a hard time making friends and people did like to make fun of me. I was awkward and strayed away from social interaction with new people as much as possible. I got anxiety and always worried about what people were thinking of me. I didn't even know how to look people in the eyes when having a conversation; it just made me more nervous. People I thought were my friends would intentionally do things without me and start separate group messages. They would make fun of me for things I was passionate about, mainly my YouTube channel. I was scared to be myself. In the small picture, that is nothing and not even a problem compared to some of the things people in this world go through. However, that is very hard for a teenage girl, high-schoolers can be brutal.

There are so many occasions growing up where I felt alone as if I had no friends. One day, I truly met Jesus. My whole life changed: my outlook, my personality, my friendships, and the way I felt. Jesus turned my world upside down. Little did I know at the time, but he was using all of my struggles to bring me close to him and strengthen me for all this life can throw at us. All of the feelings of loneliness built me up and taught me that no one else's opinion matters. God's opinion is the only opinion we need to care about. There were points where my anxiety became severe and I didn't know what to do. I could not shake this feeling, no matter what I did, nor could I describe it. Anxiety can only really be understood if you experience it. When I get really anxious, I can't think, drive, make logical decisions, or even function without making huge mistakes. I couldn't shake this terrible feeling and I didn't know what to do, so I got angry. I was very short-tempered with my family and spent most of my time in my room. I went through each school day feeling miserable. However, God takes all of that away from me. When I am weak, he is strong.

I am a YoungLife leader becuase my purpose is to help high school students. High school was one of the worst times in my life and I want to help kids through it. If they're having a rough time, I want them to know that we always have a friend in Jesus, and we are never truly alone. If God is for us, who can be against us? I thank God each and every day for dying on the cross and what he has done in my life. I was raised in the church, but when I got personal with God, he worked in ways I never could have imagined. I've changed so much from the anxious teen who couldn't even hold a conversation. Now I am the one to start the conversation and live life with a smile on my face. My soul is on fire for Jesus!! I am a huge optimist and am always looking on the bright side, the glass half-full perspective. There were days where I just went through the motions to get through the week, but now I look forward to each and every thing I do. Every day is a new opportunity to meet people and share Jesus.

I've been trying to write my testimony for months, and God decided it was time for my "aha" moment. These aren't even my words, nor do I feel like I am typing this. God will work through you and use you for amazing things if you let him. All humans are looking for a purpose in life and we can find that in Jesus. It doesn't matter what you've done or what direction you're headed, becuase Jesus meets us right where we are. He created you and loves you more than you could ever imagine. We were meant to love others with that same kind of love. God loves us so much that he sent his only son to die on the cross and take our sin, so that we could have eternal life in heaven. We are all broken, sinful humans, but he canceled our debt and called us friends.

xx,
Daria

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Apr 19, 2017

Where I Shop? My Favorite Stores


I often get asked my favorite stores and where I purchase the majority of my clothes. When shopping, I am always balling on a budget and looking for the best sales. All of these sites are affordable with the exception of Free People, Madewell, and Urban Outfitters where I shop sale. I do not shop at one particular store and shop a little bit of everywhere to get the most out of my wardrobe. 
  • Free People // This is my favorite brand of all time. Free People's clothing is amazing quality- not to mention absolutely gorgeous. I am not a fan of the price tag, but I always find items from here on a huge sale. I like to shop in-store between seasons at Free People or I shop department stores (in-store and online) like Lord + Taylor, Nordstrom, Macy's, 6pm.com, and Belk.
  • Madewell // Madewell is the sister company to J. Crew, so yes they are a bit pricy. Madewell sums up my style so well: classic and simple with trendy touches. They are well known for having great sales in-store and online; they also have a lot of great basics. 
  • American Eagle // I love American Eagle's latest spring collection. I swear by their denim and they've managed to stay on top of the latest trends throughout the years. They do 30-40% sales often and have good clearance.
  • Abercrombie // You're probably to surprised to see this on my list,  but Abercrombie has really upped their game lately. I love almost every item on their site. They do not have great prices, but always have a ton of great items in-store and online in clearance. Oh, they also have petite sizes online (I'm 5'1)!
  • Country Club Prep // I love CCP, and have been shopping here for 4+ years- it's great becuase I can also get 20% off and free shipping always, so everything is cheaper than purchasing elsewhere. Shoot me an email at xcgal98@gmail.com for a 20% off discount code. They sell Birkenstocks, North Face, YETI products, Jack Rogers, True Grit, frat brands (Southern Proper, Southern Tide, Southern Shirt Company, etc.), Barbour, and everything under the sun. Also, the customer service is awesome!!!
  • Southern Proper // This has been my go-to brand for tee shirts since eight grade (that was 5 years ago) becuase they are so soft. They are made with a Peruvian cotton, and they have the best designs. I love the All Prep Pullover for winter. Also, you can get 15% off with the code DSGS. Their items are such great quality and I love them!!
  • Target // Who doesn't love Target? They sell everything. Their dollar section is one of my favorite thing. Target is known for having great swimsuits, but I really love their shoes as well. I also get a lot of clothes here. I recommend downloading the Cartwheel app becuase they constantly do extra discounts on their products (like 20-40% off clothes, BOGO 50% off on shoes, swim, + clothes).
  • Old Navy // Old Navy is cheap as it is, but they are always doing an additional 30-50% off every time I buy something. They also always seem to be doing store credit back, so $10 or $20 in store credit for every $25 you spend. On top of that, the clearance is always poppin'! I am a big fan of their jeans, and their workout wear (similar to Lulu Lemon). One more thing I might add, they have a great selection of petite sizes online. 
  • Forever 21 // I went through a phase where I hated F21 for their quality, but they have gotten so much better over the years. I love F21 becuase some items are so cheap and really such as great bargain. Why spend a lot of $ on trendy clothes? I do recommend shopping online becuase their stores tend to be overcrowded and hard to shop. If something doesn't work online, you can return it in-store for cash back. 
  • Urban Outfitters // I rarely ever buy anything full price here and always go for clearance. If you wait, I feel like almost everything goes on clearance here at some point. I definitely don't go to UO a lot, but I get a few good pieces every now and then. 
  • Amazon // I order everything I possibly can off of here! Amazon Prime is only $50/year for students, and what is better than free 2 day shipping?! Sign up here.
  • Nordstrom // I love Nordstorm's BP line becuase it's created for teens and it's affordable. I also purchase all of my designer items here for Nordstrom's customer service and warranty. I buy a lot of Nike here, or at the Nike outlet.
  • Zaful // This is a wholesale site, so the items are from China. However, everything on here is dirt cheap and there are a lot of dupes for expensive brands like Free People. You never know what you're going to get with sizing, appearance, or quality of the item. There are some thing from here that I hate and others that I wear 24/7. Shipping does take at least 2 weeks.
  • Boutiques // I frequent local boutique becuase you can find unique items that aren't owned by everyone and their mother, or you can find dupes for trendy items. 
I also shop at H&M, PacSun, and Show Me Your Mumu sometimes. Leave a comment with any companies I should check out or any tips you may have for finding sales. I hope y'all found this post helpful or it brought you some form of enjoyment.

xx,
Daria

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Apr 17, 2017

Day Trip to Charleston


Charleston is one of my favorite cities, and only a 2.5 hour drive from Statesboro. On the weekends, my friends and I like to make day trips to this lovely city. If you've been to Savannah, Charleston is a bigger and better version. 



This cute shop is located on King Street, along with tons of other shops and places to dine. Glazed is the top rated donut shop in all of Charleston. The donuts here are great, and you really can't go wrong with a light breakfast here. I am a big fan of the raspberry glazed donut.


Shopping on King Street
There are so many cute and neat shops along this street! Start at the top of the street and work your way down to see all the shops (if you have the time). 


I stopped here for lunch after walking around King street. This is a superfood shop with healthy food from wraps to juices and smoothie bowls. I got a pitaya bowl, which is made with dragonfruit. The staff is very friendly, and this would be a great place to go if you're vegan.



Andruw's shirt // Use code DSGS for 15% off

The Battery
Here, you can see gorgeous views of the Charleston Harbor and Fort Sumter in the distance. Parking is free along the road, and gorgeous homes line this street. This would be a great spot to watch sunrise or sunset. 

Rainbow Row
Rainbow Row is a street of brightly colored houses in a row. This is one of Charleston's well known assets, and it's in walking distance of the battery. You could get some great Instagram pictures here.

Folly Beach
This is a great beach to relax on and watch the sunset. There is a wonderful pier for fishing, and sometimes you can spot dolphins here. 


There are a few of these located throughout Charleston. Sesame serves gourmet burgers with endless options. The menu provides a wide array of burger toppings, you can even get bison meat or avocado as a topping. Btw, avocado on top of burgers is amazing. The burger I ordered had peanut butter and banana, which was rather obscure but very good. You can even get fruit as a side (A+ in my book). Definitely go here, amazing burger joint!!

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xx,
Daria

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