Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Getting Back on the Bike

Nearly two years ago, I had brain surgery.

I went in to surgery with a lot of expectations. I expected there to be pain. I expected there to be weeks of recovery. I expected that there would be months of physical therapy. I expected driving to be tricky. I expected to be tired. And while all of those expectations came true, there were so many things - both small and large - that I didn't expect.

I never expected that watching fish at the aquarium would make me dizzy. I didn't expect that would need another neurosurgery so soon after the first, or I would keep my handicap placard permanently. I never considered that swimming with a fused neck might be difficult, or that motion sickness would make riding a bike nearly impossible.  After all, how many times have we been assured in doing new things that, "it's just like riding a bike?" And yet, all of those things were true.

But this Spring, I'm getting back on the bike.

This year, you'll be able follow my journey as a Schwinn Ambassador as I learn to balance on two wheels, find the best bike friendly businesses in the ABQ, and figure out how exactly a girl can avoid helmet hair.

(But really, if you have tips on the hair, do share.)

Catch all of the updates here, on Instagram (with the hashtag #fromwherejenrides) and on the Schwinn Red blog.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Ten on Tuesday | Valentine's Wishes with Spring

I have a new obsession this Valentine's Day and it's not red wine, chocolate, or a new crush (though I am still obsessed with you, Trevor.) I am obsessed with a new app called Spring which combines more than 850 brands in one place and get this - every single order ships for free. I have a little something I like to call "Amazon Prime Syndrome" which prevents me from paying for shipping so this might just be my favorite thing about shopping with Spring.

For today's Ten on Tuesday, I rounded up ten gifts I would love to receive this Valentine's Day from the accessories page. I considered rounding up a list of gifts for the guys in our lives first but gave up adding "beard conditioner" to the list.

Have a best friend in need of a Galentine? This is the list you need.

Maybe you want to prepare for Easter, a Spring birthday, or maybe even Mother's Day? Look no further.

Every year that we've been together, Trevor has actually made it a point to write me a small book of poetry for Valentine's. And while I love that, I'm totally not above treating myself, so..

Here are ten items that I am crushing on this Valentine's:  

1 // The weather in Albuquerque is more volatile than ever this year, vascilating between snow and 65 degree temperatures. But one thing is consistent: it's sunny. I am loving wide brim fedoras, like this one from Scoop NYC, this time of year. They block the sun and keep you warm whether it's snowing or just breezy.

2 // Speaking of sunny days, these acetate and wooden glasses from Lee Circle are high on my list. And, they're even on sale. 

3 // If you didn't know, I am a huge fan of the color orange and all of it's iterations from coral to, well, neon so I was totally drawn to the horsehair tassle on this clutch from Kempton & Co.
4 // Another thing I am crushing on this season? Rose gold. This Marc Jacobs watch blends rose gold and cognac leather, and I am obsessed. Plus, it's nearly half off.

5 // Okay, this one just made me laugh. Spring carries a wide range of keychains from Ryan Porter, each with it's own clever phrase ranging from "fries B4 guys" to "haute mess."

6 // While in Arizona last month, I couldn't help but notice my friend Becky's bright yellow tote - the perfect pop of color, the perfect size. I've searched for the brand everywhere without luck, but when I saw this bright blue tote from Dagne Dover I was sold.

7 // And the matching card case because, well, a girl's got to match.

8 // In December, I received the new Velvet Noir mascara from Marc Jacobs (courtesy of Influenster) and fell in love with the brand so I was excited to see this precision pen, eye crayon and mascara set available on Spring.

9 // Back to that rose gold obsession, how pretty is this French pink clay cleansing soap from Herbivore Bontanicals? I have dry and sensitive skin so struggle to find soaps that work well for me and this totally fits the bill.

10 // Living in the desert, my lips get equally dry. And that's certainly not what you want on Valentine's Day. ;) So, I had to add the Coco Rose Lip Conditioner as the final item on my wishlist.

So tell me, what are you crushing on this Valentine's Day?

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Ten on Tuesday: Yoga Essentials

With a new year come new goals, right? After starting a new medication for my back and leg pain, I've been able to return to daily yoga practice and it has been such a blessing. While I haven't set any hard resolutions for this year, I think it would be amazing to clock 200 hours at the studio.

Many of you have reached out to me on Instagram about starting a yoga practice of your own, but as beginners, you aren't sure where to start. I will always suggest starting your practice in studio, with a trained instructor - plus most studios have all the equipment you need aside from maybe leggings and a fitted top.

But, for those of you ready invest in your own gear, or want to begin practicing at home - I thought I would share ten of my own yoga essentials, today. These are all products that I own and use every single yoga class.

1 // When you're ready for your own mat, it might be tempting to pick one up on your next Target run, but I can't say enough good things about the Manduka PROlite mat. I have had my own - in a pretty shade of green - for almost five years and it still looks like new. A great mat is essential for hot and power yoga practices where you will be sweating - slipping can be dangerous! Another bonus? This mat weighs in at just 4lbs, even though it is 5mm thick - this make it great for carrying to the studio.

2 // Even with a great mat, some classes are bound to have you slipping on any surface. (All that sweating is great for detoxing, right?) I personally love the eQua Plus Yoga Mat Towel for my hot yoga classes. With a quick spray of water, this towel makes your practice area becomes slip-proof and free of towel bunching. I recently snagged it in Oceana from REI on sale for just $22 (as opposed to $38) and it's still on sale.

3 // Though most studios have blocks for you to use, I love having my own - the foam surfaces of blocks can be prone to carrying germs (yuck!), plus I use these for all of my home workouts, even outside of yoga! I love these teal blocks from Gaiam - you can even find them at Target!

4 // While you're already at Target, you might want to grab a Gaiam Thisty Hand Towel. While this towel isn't designed to keep you from slipping and sliding, it's great for wiping your face or hands during practice - even if you aren't in a heated studio

5 // When you're carrying a mat, blocks, and towels to practice, a good gym bag is a must and I'm obsessed with REI's Balance Gym Bag. It holds everything you see on this list (thanks to it's handy mat holder), plus a water bottle and it comes with a snap out bag for your sweaty clothes or towels. And, it's on sale for $40 right now, as opposed to $60! 

6 // I stash a few beauty essentials in my gym bag, too - these Yes to Cucumbers face wipes are a necessity. You can find these at most drug stores or at my favorite place, Target. (Are you guys seeing a pattern here?)

7 // Another beauty essential? Dry shampoo. I don't love aerosol products with my asthma and have fallen in love with this powdered No Drought dry shampoo from LUSH. It has both lime and grapefruit essential oils in it -- yum!

8 // Speaking of essential oils.. I keep a tiny bag of my favorites in my gym bag, too. Deep Relief is a must, but I also love the RutaVaLa roller for relaxing. Some other options? Peppermint, Citrus Fresh, and R.C. (for those days when you're feeling stuffy -- after all, yoga is all about breathing!)

9 // Finally, I keep a few hair accessories in my bag. I was having such bad headaches and recently made the switch to these stretchy ribbon elastics. Why didn't I do that sooner? While you can find these in some stores, I usually order online for the best selection - plus my friend Meghan has the cutest sets in her Etsy shop.

10 // I'm also in the process of growing out my bangs and have to wear a headband to practice. I discovered Ledbetter's headbands while recouping from my first surgery but they've stayed as a necessity for my workouts and my daily outfits, if I'm being honest. They keep my hair and sweat out of my face.

So tell me, what are your favorite workout essentials? Does anyone have a favorite brand of workout apparel?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Project Life 2015 | Week 18

I was going to start this post by saying, "I can't believe that I am sharing an April spread with you in October" but let's be honest -- I'm actually not surprised. Where has this year gone?

It is hard to believe that it's been almost six months since my trip to New York to see Dr. Greenfield, though, and just over five months since my surgery. This spread seemed fitting to share today as I will be headed on another overnight flight Wednesday to see Dr. Greenfield in the city on Thursday afternoon.

Unfortunately, I won't get to have my sweet Chiari sister, Cynthia, with me for this visit. But, I'm excited to catch up with her in Pennsylvania none the less. 

Here's to hoping that New York is a little less cold when I arrive.
Products Used: Design G, Moments Like These Card Collection, Moments Like These Accessory Pack, Project Life Date Stamp, Gold Foil Rub-Ons from Studio Calico

Project Life is a system created by Becky Higgins that is designed to simply your efforts to document life + get your photos into a book. This year, I am creating spreads as part of the 2015 Creative Team and you can view all of my Project Life posts here. To learn more about the product + how to get started, visit