Oh hello! I'm back with another Gift Guide. Check out my stocking stuffer gift guide here. This time, I thought it would be fun to shop for those pampered nights. This is a perfect gift guide for a girlfriend of yours who you don't know what to ever buy them. Something luxurious that they can relax in is always the most fabulous gift. Some of these items are splurge-y and trendy (hello, "How To Be Parisian Wherever You Are") but they're pretty cool gifts to give in my opinion, especially when you're in a crunch and have no idea what to get. Honestly, I love a nice pampered night. You can't beat a night in, a great face mask and cuddling in comfy clothes –– the best!


Korres Nectarine Velvet Moisturizing Mask (perfect for cold weather!), Anthropologie Gold Monogram Mug, Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask, Lodge Lavender Moccasins, H&M satin kimono, "How To Be A Parisian Anywhere" book (so trendy right now...), J.Crew Fair Isle Leggings & Heart Fair Isle Trouser Socks


Whew, Excuse Denied is one. Can you believe it? Neither can I really. Actually –– Excuse Denied's one year birthday was a few weeks ago, but it's been busy around these parts lately so I didn't get to properly celebrate. In all honesty, I don't think I should properly celebrate this birthday for many reasons, that I'll list below soon. Nonetheless, a year is a year is a year, even if I feel like I was only blogging for 6 out of the 12 months of this first year, I have had Excuse Denied for one year. A year is an accomplishment in my book, because I've had so many other blogs before, having this blog for a year is a big deal. So, what have I learned you might ask?

I'm just going to go ahead and jump into that. Blogging is not easy, y'all. I commend those that do it as a job because right now, I could never see myself doing that. It takes a lot of work, a lot of commitment and a lot of hustle. Yes, hustling is probably one of the most important things about blogging. Putting your name out there and throwing pitch after pitch to companies is something that I still haven't gotten used to –– even after a year. Blogging takes time and countless hours of prepping, planning and producing content.

I spoke on the competitiveness of blogging in this post a few months ago, and I still hold what I said in that post to be true. Blogging is a lot more competitive than people think. You're always working to  land a major brand, get more followers, get more likes on a picture, etc. It may not necessarily be a competition with the next blogger, but more of one with yourself. I found that I constantly tore myself down to always be better instantly, until I came to the conclusion that it takes time.

Ok, I'm sure most people are like "Rania, you run a site called Excuse Denied yet you make so many excuses" well, it's true. Blogging and being a full time student is a hard thing to manage. Like I said above, blogging isn't easy and it's almost like a job. There's not enough time in the day, HOWEVER, I feel like I am finally getting back into the swing of things, since my big unveiling and I blog on a fairly regular basis now.