I'm Annie. And I haven't always cared about the planet.
I grew up in a normal family. We recycled and tried not to litter, but we also ate McDonald's and sometimes forgot to turn off the water when we brushed our teeth. I grew up like most people my age. Normal.
We had a few pets growing up, but I wasn't a huge animal person. In college, I went to Buffalo Wild Wings so much that the waitress knew me by name. Until one day...
I got a dog. She changed my world (now I understand you crazy dog people!). In 2014, my boyfriend (now husband) bought me a Time Magazine called "The Animal Mind" because it had a cute dog on the front. I read it. There was a section on factory farms. I had some questions. So I Googled "What is factory farming?" And that's the day my life changed.
The images I saw online will never be erased from my head. I was in complete shock. How had no one told me where my food was REALLY coming from? I watched all the documentaries. I read all the books. I turned to social media to find vegetarians who could show me what I should eat because meat was no longer going to be apart of my diet. I just couldn't stomach it anymore.
It turns out most vegetarians on YouTube and Instagram are also vegan. In turn, I learned the truth behind the dairy and egg industries, as well. I gave it up for good in 2015.
Over time, I began to find out more and more about how animals are exploited in the entertainment, cosmetic and fashion industries. I started to rid my life of any products that came from an animal because I just couldn't bear to know that an animal suffered because of ME.
Eventually, and unfortunately, the shock of these images wore off and I was tempted to eat meat again. So I looked to the other benefits of a vegan lifestyle. I was already feeling better, health-wise, but I began to learn of the effects of our waste, our plastic, our pollution on the animals, and the planet. So off I went on my own journey to reduce the waste in my life.
Starting this journey of compassion for the animals has led me to a place where I want to lead a compassionate life for the planet and other people as well. I now try to live my life in the most ethical, compassionate way I know.
While I wish I was a total hippie that just sat around all day, making her own soap from scratch and living in VW bus, that isn't my life. I'm a busy, professional- probably just like you- and I don't have all the time in the world. So I'm on a journey to live life in a simple, compassionate way. I hope you'll join me!
Last week, I was up at 4:30 AM every morning, kicked butt, had all my meals prepped on Sunday and was lovin’ life. Then, the weekend came and I got a little too crazy with the junk food, my meal prep went ALL WRONG (wasting food KILLS ME), I pushed my morning workouts to afternoons, my sliders weren’t working and my body in general was like “wtf you doin”. 😑 I haven’t been able to get it together this week and I have been STRUGGLING through my workouts. I think I almost puked today. BUT, that’s not gonna stop me. Next week’s meal prep WILL be better, my bedtime will be earlier so my morning workouts can return and I’ll be 2 weeks stronger than when I started. Don’t let the little things discourage you. Keep those pretty little eyes on the big picture. ✨✌🏼
When life hands you stress hives, you turn around and say suckkkk it and find a way to calm yo life down so that you can function. So hello to trying to get enough sleep, leaving work at a reasonable time, not checking work emails at home and dousing myself in essential oils to get through the day. ✌🏼✨#AnnieGetsOily
The only time I set the bar low is for limbo. -Michael Gary Scott
My greatest strength is also my greatest weakness- my FIRE. Sounds cliche, but it’s inside me. I love to hustle, I live to grind, and if something is wrong or unfair or unjust, I can’t stop, won’t stop until I find a way to fix it. I often live life in black and white, based on principle. This makes me driven, focused but also inflexible and intense. •• Know who you are. Know your strengths. Know weaknesses. Be proud but be humble. Then, go set ya world on fire. 🔥
HBD to the Andy to my April. 😍😭 // I often think about how I’m the luckiest (and craziest) girl in the world to be married to you. Your love of life and other people is what makes you so amazing. You’re everything I want and nothing that I don’t (except when you sleep with the AC on 68....) 😘
Hi. Bye. 👋🏼 After working 13 hour days every day this week, I’m ready for a weekend. And by weekend, I mean laying in my bed with tea and a good book. Also, this book is in my top 3 greatest books of all time and Diana will always be my home girl. 🇬🇧 #anniereadsthings
“Yeah, I got responsibilities now. That means I’m not allowed to have fun anymore for the rest of my life.” -Angela Pickles a la Rugrats...but also me going back to work 🙃🙃🙃🙃
If you knew me at all last year, you knew that my job D•R•A•I•N•E•D my freaking soul. It’s hard to work so hard for 5 years, have a ton of student loans and then go to work to be cussed out by 7 year olds, feel physically unsafe in your classroom, be loaded down with awful curriculum you have to spend all night rewriting, and be told by parents that you should be fired. I started college so hopeful to change the lives of littles but the reality of teaching has set in. I spent all summer feeling sick to my stomach, knowing I had to go back to my own personal war zone this fall. If you’ve ever worked a job that stifles you, you know how miserable it is. So this is the Instagram reality... I am dreading the first day of school tomorrow. My anxiety has been insane. I know I can do it, I know I’m a great teacher, I know I’m making a difference but I honestly don’t want to do this anymore. I wish I had like a little positive quote or something to wrap this up nicely. But that’s not what life’s is right now. It’s hard and it sucks. So if you’re in the same boat as me with a crappy job, we’re gonna get through this 👊🏼
We met 7 years ago today in a crusty, old college house. Today, I love him more than I ever thought was possible to love another person. ❤️
Tan lines will fade...but the memories of not looking like a piece of pasty white bread will last forever. 🍞
Well, it’s official. Met the students. Met the parents. Guess I’m really back to reality. And I guess the classroom selfies are back too. 🤷🏻♀️ #AnniesTeacherLife
Using quality essential oils has been a GAME CHANGER in my journey towards natural living. It’s helped me avoid so many medications, chemicals and unnecessary products which is awesome cause chemicals suck + can mess with how your body works. If you’re interested, I wrote about the five things I wish I knew before using oils! Happy oiling! || link in bio #AnnieGetsOily
Moment of silence for all the children who will never know the joy of that one time in the 90s when they made purple ketchup...✌🏼
I just wanted to share with everyone that I’m starting a GoFundMe to buy ALL Y’ALL A CALENDAR CAUSE IT’S STILL SUMMER UNTIL SEPTEMBER 22 SO I DON’T WANNA HEAR THE WORDS “PSL”, “Halloween” and “omgggg-I-just-love-fall-cause-sweaters-apple-picking-Halloween-cool-weather-cozy-blankets-football-boots-scarves-blah-blah-blah” COMING OUTTA YA PRETTY LITTLE MOUTHES. I WILL UNFOLLOW YOUR WHITE PUMPKINS AND CHUNKY SWEATERS SO FAST. I am ruthless. CHECK YOUR HEARTS, PEOPLE. #hairflip
“Who despises the day of SMALL THINGS?” •
I do. 🙋🏻♀️ I have big dreams but here I am, stuck in the land of small things for years now. •
I don’t like the days of small, mundane things. Of paying bills, of bickering with my husband over something stupid, of working a stressful job, of cluttered apartments, of trying to figure out what friends are going to be the ones who last, of wondering what I’m doing + if I’m making any damn difference. •
Don’t we all just want to know that our days of small things matter? I’m learning that they DO. Those small days...yeah, they build the BIG days. •
So if you’re lost + wandering in the land of small things, keep doing your small things WELL. Do them with HEART. Do them like they’re BIG THINGS. •
Pay off your debt, rock your babies to sleep, ask your husband on a date, go joyfully to the job you hate, spend that hour at the gym, love a hard-to-love person, get out of bed when you’re depressed, read your Bible when you’re half asleep in the early morning, send an encouraging text to an old friend LIKE THEY ARE BIG THINGS. •
This verse was from Zechariah 4:10. Very interesting book to read if you haven’t read it before!
Happy #nationaldogday from me and my children. ✌🏼#baileyfurever #lucyfurever
Dare to be a donut in a world full of bagels... 🍩
If I ran away this weekend, do you think my students would teach themselves? Asking for a friend...cause after 16 hours of PD...ya home girl needs a vacay. 🏖 Oh, I just got back from one, you say? Oops... 🤷🏻♀️•• Peep that amazing thrift store bag I scored for $7 at @savers_thrift with tags still on + my Dwight Schrute holding a beet in a Battlestar Galactica shirt @aauuddzzz gave me cause she gets me, people. 😍 #AnnieGetsThrifty
As a teenager, I traveled to super cool places...but never really had the money. I took out loans to study abroad. I put road trips on credit cards. Did I pay off the credit cards eventually? Yeah, but it became a cycle. One that I carried into marriage. •
B + I would pay for most of the trip in cash + then put whatever we overspent on credit cards. We didn’t have a plan. Just spending money cause we were on a trip + somehow that meant all responsibility was gone? Idk, y’all. •
One day, I realized we were spending money we didn’t have so we could color in states + countries on a map. Listen again. We were spending thousands of dollars on stuff we didn’t need so we could COLOR IN A PIECE OF PAPER + LOOK COOL ON INSTAGRAM. Don’t act like a part of you doesn’t relate. 😏
We travel FAR LESS than we want now. Why? Cause we believe passionately in the outcome of FINANCIAL FREEDOM. We are not oblivious or naive so we know that spending to impress people or to check off a box isn’t going to get us closer to goals that impact us in a realistic way. •
That being said, when we travel, we make the most of it + do it as inexpensively as possible. Traveling is a huge dream of ours + keeps us motivated, knowing one day, we’ll travel everywhere we dream of by paying cash for it. 😉💸
But for now, I have 13 super freaking cool FREE things to do in Chicago. Some of them may surprise you..just saying 🤷🏻♀️ (link in bio)
My face when my alarm went off at 5:30 AM and my husband told me my gig as a full-time dog mom was over...