Better Than a Dress

beauty, fashion

// Like the new look of the site? Get ready for a big change coming in March! //

This weekend is the YAGP semi-finals here in Dallas, and for those of you who don’t know, it’s a huge ballet-specific competition. At the end, there’s an awards ceremony, and I’ve been planning my outfit for weeks. If I’m going to stand on a stage listening to an announcer for two hours, I might as well look good doing it!

I put together the perfect look. It’s unique, but trendy, dressy, but comfortable. The skirt is my favorite part, and it has POCKETS! The top is so comfortable, and lucky for you, it’s twelve dollars. I found the shoes on Nordstrom Rack for you so you get 33% off! I curled my hair using the amazing Beachwaver.

Check it out.





Possibly The Front-Man of an Alternative Band – New Look


After hitting the Neiman’s Last Call 70% off sale quite aggressively, I left with a few items that I wasn’t quite sure how to style… until I put them together. When I came out of the closet (not like that), my mom commented that I looked like I was in a band, and I’m completely cool with that! This shirt from Velvet Heart is the glue that holds this look together. I felt super feeling the cape-like back flowing behind me. These Rag & Bone boyfriend shorts were scored for around $30 at LCNM, but luckily for you they’re on sale at Rag too! Check out my boots in my post Winter in Chicago ❄️ Here’s the look!

For those of you wondering what happened to the “life” on this life and style blog, I’ve been doing some content planning! Follow me on Instagram to keep track of some upcoming posts:


New Music (In case you’re tired of “Cheap Thrills” and “Closer”)

New formal look

DIY Lip Balm

Cheap Tops

Valentines Day Look



Chocolate-Chip Mug Cake

diy, from scratch

If you’re like me, you don’t see dessert as an indulgence, or a craving, but you see it as a lifestyle. I have made so many mug cakes in my lifetime, I no longer have to google a recipe, I’ve created my own! It’s so good, I had to share it with you.

Follow along with the gallery, and the complete recipe will be at the end:



Combine wet ingredients in mug.


Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and whisk into wet in small batches.


Fold in chocolate chips.


Microwave for 1:30-2:00 minutes.


Here’s the recipe!

Chocolate-Chip Mug Cake by Jordan Carter

Time: 5 min

Yield: 2 Servings (1 Jordan serving)

What You’ll Need:

2 tbs Coconut Oil (melted)

1/2 tbs Water

1 Egg

1/2 tsp Vanilla

4 tbs Flour

4 tbs Sugar

1 tbs Cocoa Powder

1/8 tsp Salt

1/4 tsp Baking Powder

2 tbs (or more) Chocolate Chips

What to Do:

Melt coconut oil in microwave safe mug. About 15 seconds. Combine the rest of the wet ingredients in the mug, whisk well. In a separate bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients, except chocolate chips. In small batches, combine dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Mix well, then fold in chocolate chips. Microwave 1:30 – 2:00 minutes. (My microwave is 1000w)


Mug: Anthropologie Initial Mug

More Recipes by Me?

smoothie bowl recipe

DIY Rose-Water Lavender Toner (And Make-up Remover)



Jo @jordancarter99


On Fall and Fashion: When the Season Changes but the Temperature Hasn’t

fashion, photgraphy

To all of you still hanging on to summer, while you’re right that it might not be September 22nd, school has started and I’m ready for booties and denim.

Girls everywhere are ordering their (iced) PSL’s, re-organizing their closets, and sweating under layers of fall fashion in this 92 degree heat (at least they are in Texas). Others are mad at Starbucks for starting the fall drinks, laying by the pool, and refusing to accept that it’s mid September! 

I’ve been digging through my clothes every day trying to figure out what exactly I’m supposed to wear when I’m sick of shorts and tanks, but I’ll be sweating in sleeves. Today was a pleasant day at 85 and my outfit was just right! (Skip to the end to see a re-cap on my three-month hiatus!)


Yes this is a bathtub full of flowers.


Sippin’ and squintin’


The look: links after last pic.


My elbows: my trademark.


Happy because iced coffee.

Shades: Free People Florence Wire Frame Sunnies

Denim: J. Crew Denim

Booties: Nordstrom Rack Susina Shay Lace Bootie

Top: No longer available

Necklace: Vintage

Drink 🙂 : Starbucks Iced PSL

Catching Up:

I spent my summer at Ballet West in Salt Lake City and had an amazing time! I’m back in the swing of things with my ballet training and online school, so I’ve been pretty go go go. Today on 9/11 I had the opportunity to go on a prayer walk with my church and it was a great reminder to pray for all those around us, even the strangers because they are loved! In this busy season, take time to think of the big picture, because our daily plans are minuscule compared to God’s ultimate plan!


Jo – Proverbs 31:25

DIY Rose-Water Lavender Toner (And Make-up Remover)

beauty, diy

First off, make sure to check out my blog on Bloglovin! a href=””>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Hi! So after two attempts I finally made the perfect, calming, sweet smelling rose-water toner. My special ingredients? Lavender essential oil and coconut oil. Rose water is an all natural skin anti-inflammatory. The smell of lavender essential oil is a mind relaxer and stress reducer, consequently relaxing your body’s toxins. Coconut oil is moisturizing, and turns this toner into an all natural eye-makeup remover. (I’ve tried it, the results are surprisingly good!) I’m really way too excited about this stuff, how easy it is to make, and how good I feel for putting all-natural things onto my skin.

So let’s get to the recipe!

DIY Rose-Water Lavender Toner and Eye Make-up Remover

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Lidded Bottle or Mister Bottle (I thouroughly washed out a nail-polish remover bottle)
  • The Petals of 3 Red Roses
  • 3 Cups of Water
  • 5 Drops of Lavender Essential Oil (Available at Sprout’s or Whole Foods)
  • 1/2 tbs of All-natural Coconut Oil
  • Pan and Strainer

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  1. Start off with the three cups of water into a pan over high-heat.

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2. Add in the rose petals, start to stir and you’ll notice they begin wilting. You’ll be bringing the water to a boil eventually.

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3. Add 5 drops of the essential oil, then stir it in and bring the water to a boil.

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4. Add in the coconut oil to the boiling water and make sure that it is fully melted in.

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6.Take the pan off the heat and scoop the petals into the strainer above the pan, use the spoon to mash the petals to get all of the juices and oils out of them and back into the water.

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7. Put the pan into the fridge and let it cool to at least room-temp, approx. 1 hour. It should be a honey golden color.

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8. Pour the toner into your desired lidded container! It should last about 3-4 weeks before you should throw it out and make some more.

Let me know if you make it, or if you have any questions!



Is coloring really that relaxing?

diy, photgraphy

I did not expect that taking a stroll through Barnes and Noble would result in rummaging through stacks of coloring books geared for adults. I’ve heard plenty about the new stress-relieving trend that is coloring. I’m a perfectionist, like most people claim to be, and figured that coloring would actually be a stressful task. I imagined myself working hard to have coordinating colors, being inside the lines, making the picture realistic, and not wanting to stop until the picture was finished. I gave into my curiosity and obsession for arts and crafts and bought an ‘adult’ coloring book and colored pencils.

Oh my gosh.

It is actually the best thing ever.

I can plug in my twinkly lights above my bed and start some Netflix on my laptop and just lay there and color. It is so incredibly relaxing. I’ve discovered about myself that I have to be busy. I can’t just watch TV, I have to be accomplishing something. If I am not being ‘productive’ my mind begins to wander and start to worry about every little thing. Being able to rest while working on something is ridiculously amazing. I love doing new things and learning new things, which is also why I just ordered a ukulele (more on that later this week 🙂 ).

So seriously if you relate to anything in this blog post, go buy a coloring book!




smoothie bowl recipe

diy, from scratch, photgraphy

It’s getting berry warm outside – so here is my yummy recipe for the best mixed berry vanilla smoothie bowl. Not only are smoothie bowls completely photogenic and the epitome of pretty food, but they are healthy and delicious! Something about spooning your smoothie makes it so much more filling and appetizing! The fruit provides lots of vitamins, the yogurt and almonds provide protein, and everything else provides the yum for sweet-tooth’s like me!

The ingredients are obviously all delicious on their own, so you know it will be great together!

But let’s get down to the recipe!

Berry Vanilla Crunch Smoothie Bowl Recipe

1 cup of assorted berry frozen fruit

1/2 cup of vanilla yogurt (I used vanilla bean Greek yogurt!)

1/2 tsp of vanilla extract

1 tbs of honey 

2 tablespoons of almond or coconut milk (optional – makes consistency thinner) 

Vanilla Granola

Slivered almonds 

A few sliced strawberries

Combine frozen fruit, yogurt, vanilla, honey, and milk in a blender or food processor and pulse until smooth and even consistency. Pour into a bowl, stir, and smooth out the surface. Top with anything you choose, but slivered almonds, vanilla granola, and sliced strawberries go best with this smoothie! Enjoy 🙂

xoxo, jordan


I’m 16 years old and I’ve had more than 5 failed businesses

diy, weekday thoughts

The title of this post pretty much explains it, but hilariously my entrepreneurial inclination has pushed me in the ditch many, many times.

About once every other year I have an idea for some incredible business opportunity that’s going to make me tons of money, often with some item in mind that the money will be used for. I decided to reflect and laugh about these incredible ideas chronologically. I was basically a young Tom Haverford (P&R).

  1. Some greeting card business. Basically I would fold paper and write “Happy Birthday” on it.
  2. Greeting card business with a name, “A Time to Dance Cards,” and yes I did have a lemonade/card stand outside my house for a weekend.
  3. Many lemonade stands. I used to brag about scoring $17 in 4 hours. 
  4. Bobby-pins with beads glued on. Made 12, sold 0.
  5. Ugly skirts. Made 1 skirt, told 10 girls that it could be theirs for only 2 installments of $4.99.
  6. Jo’s Bows. Made about 30 of these decent looking hair bows for girls, around the time that top knots with bows was a literal thing, sold about 3. Even had an instagram and facebook page. 
  7. Instagram leotard buy, sell, and trade. Basically just wanted to anonymously sell my old leotards.
  8. Poshmark Closet. So basically the only clothing items I have sold on Poshmark are bad quality and cheap, no one is interested in the new with tags dress that was $350, listed for $99…


Note the “Jordan’s Custom Cards” at the bottom!


There were many other ideas including social media accounts, exclusive clubs, and more… but these were the $$$! Kinda cute, mostly funny…

xoxo 🙂

everybody’s watching

faith, photgraphy, weekday thoughts

As most of you know, there are always going to be people younger then you, in my case kids, who are watching every single thing you do. They see your facial expressions, they hear your words, they watch your actions, and they never forget.

When I was a kid I always thought it was so fun to be at ballet and see the little toddlers watching us dance. They thought we were all so grown up. Lets be honest, we thought we were pretty fantastic, too. I knew when little ones were watching me, I always knew.

Now that I’m older I really don’t notice kids watching me, copying me, or following me. At ballet, I’m focused on myself, and in life I’m more aware of the opinions of people my age and older. However, when I think of when I was around 9 or 10, the older teenage girls were like super-heroes to me. They were so pretty, talented, and well… what I wanted to be. Every kid wants to grow up, so they figure they might as well try to be grown-up now.

The younger ones are always watching us, and we need to be aware that they will pick up on every thing we do, and eventually try to become it. Our lives shape other lives, and we want to leave lasting positive impressions on those who see us, especially kids who are learning who they were created to be.

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*photography in this post was done with an iphone 6s and edited on VSCO*

Ballet West Summer (Wasatch Mountains)

photgraphy, travel

With only 2 weeks to go of my 6 week journey in Salt Lake, we decided to hike (more like climb but whatever) up the mountains to the most beautiful overview of Utah. You can’t find that kind of view anywhere in Texas. It was absolutley breath taking. I grabbed my Polaroid and my fully charged phone and took some of the most beautiful pictures to ever bless my camera roll. Here’s just a few of the 50 photos I captured.IMG_0262 IMG_0260

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

IMG_0225Gorgeous right?

Judges 5:5 “The mountains quaked before the Lord…”

xoxo Jordan –