Fall Capsule Wardrobe

I've been on and off capsule wardrobing for awhile now. I really do love when I do it, and then I get distracted by a shiny boutique and the cute clothes and fall off the wagon. Then my closet gets super full, I become overwhelmed and I got on a crazy cleaning rampage. Today I did that. 

I pared my closet down to 33 clothing items (tops, bottoms, skirts, dresses) and 6 pairs of shoes. Which is still a TON. And especially in the fall here in Utah that gives me SO MANY COMBINATIONS. I also pretty much wear the exact same stuff everyday anyway, so the idea was to get the stuff I didn't wear out of my closet so I could focus on the pieces I love. 

Here's what the count came to....

+ 2 pairs of black leggings 

+ 1 casual chambray skirt

+ 1 pair black work pants

+ 1 black pencil skirt

+ 2 plaid shirts (one blue & white, one black & red)

+ 1 pink casual dress

+ 1 burnt orange fancy dress

+ 4 cardigans (1 b&w striped, 1 navy & cream striped, 1 plain burnt orange, 1 plain mustard yellow)

+ 4 striped tees (1 mauve with simple black stripes, 1 mostly white with black stripes, 1 b&w even skinny stripes, 1 mostly red w/ black stripes)

+ 3 plain white tees (1 v neck, 1 crew neck w/ pocket, 1 basic layering top) 

+ 1 casual star wars hoodie

+ 1 white and floral tunic

+ 1 casual tee from the Elementary School I work for

+ 1 casual "Fur Mom" tee

+ 1 chambray dress

+ 4 peplum tops (1 greyish blue, 1 oatmeal, 1 black & grey stripe, 1 gray with floral peplum)

+ 4 various chambray tops (1 blue & teal striped, 1 plain dark wash chambray, 1 plain white wash chambray, 1 polka dot blue chambray)

+ 1 pair knee high brown boots

+ 3 pairs of flats (black ballet flats, b&w striped flats, leopard print flats)

+ 1 pair of Nike tennis shoes

+ 1 pair brown ankle boots

So that's my capsule! I'll do some instagram updates at @brooklynjolley using hashtag #brooklyncapsules 

I love using a capsule wardrobe and it really helps me have a lesser desire to spend money. I love my capsule because it helps me wear what I love and not feel guilty about it. 

Also one time I read that men wear basically the same thing to work over and over. Black pants, white button down top, and a tie. Why can't women adopt that pattern and just wear a uniform? What if we did?? I do believe that fashion should be fun and can be really exciting and a great way to express yourself! However, I do think the idea of a "uniform" could be fun and liberating. Any thoughts? 

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13 by 2017 - an end of the year goal

I'm a big believer in goal-setting. I've been slacking lately, life just got crazy and I felt like I was just barely getting by. Surviving, not really thriving, do you know how that feels? Anyway, I decided to set a fun goal to reach by 2017. One thing I've really missed has been reading! I've missed my long strolls through the library, anticipating my recent Amazon book coming to my door, and having so much to think and talk about because of what I'm reading. 

So I set a goal to read 13 books by 2017! I set this goal a few weeks ago when there were still 13 weeks left in the year! Now there's only 10 which is crazzzzy. 

This Fall weather has been perfect for cuddling up with a book and relaxing in the evening. Although it can be hard to pull my eyes away from Vampire Diaries long enough to read ;) 

You can see what books I read in September by going HERE. I'll do another update for October books read soon! Happy Fall guys! 

How I Survived My First Week Eating Vegetarian (10 Tips!)

I recently wrote about why I'm trying to eat vegetarian. I'm officially on my 12th day of eating this way and so happy and motivated to continue! I was so grateful that there were so many guides online on how to transition into vegetarianism so I thought maybe writing an update of how I survived my first week.


1. SHOP! 

Go shopping for some food you love and know you will eat. The first day I decided to eat vegetarian was a Sunday (we choose to not shop on Sundays) so it was a little harder to eat this day. We have a lot of meat sitting in the freezer and I was stumped about what to eat that didn't include meat. (Spoiler alert: You can eat SO MUCH!) Once we went shopping I had fresh fruit, snacks, potatoes, cereal, green smoothies, spaghetti, almond milk, frozen veggies, etc. I love having a full pantry and fridge so eating vegetarian got really exciting once I had the food I wanted. 

2. Try a Meat Substitute. 

I was pretty wary of meat substitutes. How does it look like meat, and taste like meat, if it's NOT meat... kinda freaky. I made my Mandarin Orange Cristy Chickn from Gardein and it was so good! My husband asked to try it and it tasted so good! We bought it again and made it with rice the second time and it was still so good. We've now bought Gardein beef crumbles, Boca Chickn patty sandwiches, and Quinoa Morning Star burgers. They are all super good! My husband is not doing the vegetarian thing with me, but he's eating these meals with me.  Cruelty free for the win!

3. Have a Few Go-To Meals

It can be really stressful when you wake up in the morning and have to hurry and think of something to eat and pack for lunch that doesn't contain meat. I didn't consider myself a huge meat eater but I did not realize how much meat I ate until I quit eating it. Turkey sandwiches, chicken nuggets, salad with grilled chicken... it was all out of the question. It was stressful! I made sure to have a few cereals I love on hand, and Van's Vegan waffles for breakfast. That way I had some quick delicious breakfasts. I did the same for lunches, except I knew I could eat peanut butter & jelly sandwiches and baked potatoes. Yum! 

4. Educate Yourself

Watch a few documentaries, get a few books from the library, and google and read tons of online information about going vegetarian and vegan. Feeling knowledgable will empower you. Whenever I get tempted by meat (RIP Chickfila) I think about the documentary Vegucated and the poor chickens. I can not UNSEE those images. I remember the health benefits that have been proven by eating less or no meat and I get excited for those to be MY health benefits. 

5. Have a Quick Response

It's terrifying for me to have to tell people I'm not eating meat. Especially since the decision came on so suddenly and without any preparation. After answering to a few people I told my husband I needed to come up with a scripted response I could use when someone says, "Why would you go vegetarian?" So I did. 

"Well, I knew a few bloggers who have recently gone vegan and have seen amazing health benefits. I started looking more into it and decided it was I wanted to try for myself." I'm also going vegetarian (and hopefully eventually vegan) for the animals and for the environment, but that response is true and also not super offensive to meat eaters and seems to be quick in and out response. It's definitely the easy way out, but for now, it works. 

6. Look at Your Schedule and Have a Plan

If you know you're going to be going out to eat do a quick google search "How to Eat Vegetarian at ________". You could also call ahead. So many people have already done the research. McDonald's is a horrible place to go! Most others places make easy accommodations. Chick-fil-a made my wrap without chicken, Wendy's has baked potatoes and salads, Taco Bell has lots of vegetarian options just order without meat. (Vegan is MUCH trickier because I swear dairy products are in EVERYTHING, which is why I'm making the vegetarian transition first)

If you're going to any family meals, find out what they are making and make sure you can eat something there. If you can't eat much there, be sure to eat before you go! 

7. Let the People Close to You Know What You Are Doing 

I let my husband know when I made the decision because he was most important to me since he would be the one weirded out when I didn't want a Junior Bacon Cheeseburger at Wendy's for date night. I also started tweeting about it which is how my Mom found out. I don't think you have to make a huge Facebook announcement, but let your besties, and significant other know so they can support you.

8. Decide What New Foods You Want to Try 

There are a lot of foods out there that vegetarians can eat that other people don't eat. Try tofu, make homemade sweet potato fries, try different kinds of rice, bake vegan cookies, use almond milk in your cereal, eat a veggie burger, try chia seeds on your salad, eat pecans. Expand your palate! I'm trying really hard to taste new foods because I've always been a mac n cheese and chicken nuggets kinda girl. It's been exciting to try new things and think about all the new things I will get to try. 

9. Create a Pinterest Board and Pin Like Crazy! 

I made a vegan Pinterest board to pin recipes, advice, and inspiring quotes to. You can find it HERE. Pinterest is really great for inspiration when making lifestyle changes! 

10. Supplement During Transition

One thing people will without a doubt say is... "But where do you get your protein?" Most people don't realize that you can get plenty of protein from plants, whole grains, nuts, beans, etc. I bought a soy-based protein powder and soy milk. One scoop of the protein and 8 ounces of soy milk add up to 30 g of protein! We really only need around 55 g a day so that is pretty dang good! I've been trying to drink one a day while I figure out how to get enough protein on a vegetarian diet.

Many also say that you will be deficient on B12. They say that vegans get their vitamins the same place that meat-eaters food get it, from plants! I made sure my daily multivitamin had plenty of B12. Do the research to make sure you're getting what you need! (Many meat-eaters don't get enough vitamins anyway!) 


I've been really grateful for the support I've had during this transition. Some days are harder than others. When we went to Cafe Rio I was so sad I couldn't eat the sweet pork, then I remembered I COULD eat the sweet pork but I was choosing not to for my own reasons and it was a choice I WANTED to make. 

I know this was a super long post but I hope it will be helpful if you decide to make your own vegetarian transition! I'll continue to do updates on here about my transitions and hope you'll stick around for the ride :) 

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The Sacrament Is For Me - Book Review

I've been so blessed to be offered so many amazing book reviews lately. I hope you are loving them, I sure am! The most recent book I've received to review is The Sacrament is For Me by Jessica B. Ellingson. 

It is a really cute rhyming children's book that explains how we should act during the sacrament. It explains why we take it and how to make it a special time. I absolutely love the focus of Jesus Christ in this book, I feel like one issue I find in church is I don't hear enough about Jesus! But maybe that's because you can never hear enough about Jesus ;) Either way, I love the reminder this book is for children and adults on why the sacrament is for each of us. 

Any book that rhymes is automatically a winner to me. I love the way the words flowed in this book. I've wondered how we will be able to teach our future children (and foster children!) the way we feel about sacred ordinances like the sacrament, and books like this are the perfect way. How blessed we are to live in a dispensation with so many resources at our beck and call!

If you'd like to read more reviews and/or purchase the book you can pop right over to Amazon and check it out!

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Defenders of the Family - Review

I was given the opportunity to review a new book called "Defenders of the Family" by Benjamin Hyrum White. I've been wanting to build our collection of children's books as we prepare to start our family and this book looked like a perfect one to add to our collections.

It was!

 This book has comic book type illustrations which kids will love! It goes through many of the roles of family, why families are important, and how we can strengthen our families.

I loved the simple descriptions that were used in the book and I wanted you to see what the inside looked like so you can see that below!

The book describes perfectly what Heavenly Father's plan is for families. It would be absolutely perfect to read to children to help them understand.

Like we learned in conference, if we don't teach our children about God and Jesus Christ, the world will.

This book can be purchased HERE from Amazon.

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Why I'm Trying to Eat Vegetarian

Over the last few months, I've been trying to change my eating habits. After being diagnosed with a few mental illnesses my doctors recommended a gluten and dairy free diet. I've been focusing on how I feel after I eat. I haven't lost any weight, but when I eat a better diet I FEEL better: both physically and mentally. 

I started doing some more research of what kind of diets are most helpful for anxiety and one that I came across is a vegan/vegetarian diet. I read my blogger friend Annie's article about Why Every One Should Try Going Vegan at Least Once in Their Life and was intrigued. I've been thinking about doing it for awhile and the other night when I was home alone I got on Netflix and watched Vegucated. 


I have been living in this little "Brooklyn-bubble" completely unaware of where my food comes from. I had "heard" these crazy vegans and vegetarians, but I hadn't listened to what they were saying. 

I decided to educate myself even more. I watched Forks Over Knives and Hungry For Change on Netflix. I started reading WHOLE and ordered The China Study. I don't want to keep living in the dark. I want to feel better. I want to take care of my body, mentally and physically. So what do I have to lose?

There are incredible benefits for eating vegetarian or vegan! There are benefits for our environment, our bodies, animals, and the world! Seriously you guys. Do some research! Here's a list by Annie of 100 Reasons to Go Vegan. 

I'll be honest. I'm nervous. Giving up meat doesn't seem too hard, because I'm not a huge meat eater anyway. But RIP Chickfila, I'll miss you! I plan to eat vegetarian for at least a couple of weeks, but the ultimate goal is to continue eating this way! That's really scary for me to post, because then it holds me accountable... but that's what I need. 

I am excited to give this a try, and I'll be doing updates on my Instagram of how I feel and what I'm eating! Be sure to go follow over at @brooklynjolley

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I was reading my blogger friend Ashley's October Goals and it inspired me! I love reading what goals others are working on and how they are achieving them. I've been off/on with blogging for awhile and have been feeling a little more inspired lately so here I am! I decided to share some of my October goals with you to keep you in the loop. 

We are in transition on a lot of things right now: becoming foster parents, becoming biological parents, selling our home, Colten graduating, new jobs, etc. So instead of worry about all the things I can't control, this month I'm really trying to focus on what I CAN control. Which is me! So here's my goals based on Luke 2:52.


Read 4 books this month. I just finished No Ordinary Women by Elaine Dalton on audiobook and loved it! Now I'm starting a book about yoga and so far so good. I'll try to do an October book update like I did for September. 


Practice yoga every day- even if it's only a couple of stretches before bed. 

This is something I'm working on to try and help with my anxiety, and so far I feel like it's been helping a lot! 


10-30 minutes of "SIT" time every day. I need to write a full blog post to explain this concept, but basics of SIT time is that I spend time Studying wherever my heart desires as long as it is spiritually uplifting, spend time in Intentional prayer/meditation, and give myself Time to write in a journal.


Go on a fall-themed date with Colten! I've been wanting to go pick pumpkins and make caramel apples so we are definitely going to figure out how to make this happen. Fall is my favorite season!

That's all for now. I've been working through my mental illnesses and it has been very life-consuming for awhile. I finally feel like I'm getting a routine down that works! But I am still giving myself grace when I fall and need to pick myself back up. I hope you'll do the same for you this month.

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