I found the two photos above (found on Scouts Honor Co./Xnet) and realized how much I adore peach hues. I like to wear peach in the summer when I’m rocking a tan but it’s a fun color to add to your wardrobe as hints of spring start popping up. Depending on what my tax return looks like…I MIGHT have to splurge and buy that Felix Weekender Bag. Oye.
I can’t believe we’re already starting week 4! This week’s submissions (week 3: Grey) turned out great! I realized by a few of the comments on last week’s post that some of you might not have realized that the top set is always mine. (I go by Allison or Allie depending on my mood). I actually enjoyed shooting this week more than white or red. I loved trying to attain the feeling of grey by aiming for a natural black & white tone. My photos are still in color but I feel like as a set, they appear more black & white. I love Sue’s set. I feel like her grey tones have a bit of brown and as a set it really works. Plus I’m a sucker for typography in photography.
What is your favorite set? Which week has been your favorite so far? I think yellow will be the most difficult. It seems like the least common, everyday color. If you’re just discovering the challenge, check out the white and red sets. Also, click here to read details and submit for week 4!
I received the prettiest package in the mail last week. The experience of opening this beautiful scarf was as much of a delight as the actual product itself! Sonya, who I “met” through blogging last year, graciously made this scarf for me with the yarn that I supplied and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the result. Since then, Sonya has opened her own shop where she now sells her scarves!
It’s amazing how all those little details add up to make the perfect little package. I can often overlook details and I hope that throughout my life I get better at that.
Last month, I saw a blog advertisement for Good & Lovely. I remember clicking over to their site and thinking it looked like a fun monthly subscription box. It wasn’t until I kept reading and exploring that I realized it’s even better than just a box of goodies. It’s a box of goodies delivered to my door the day I start my period (sorry to the guys that read my blog…but don’t worry…I won’t go into more detail than that). How amazing is that?
Basically, you pick the day you want it delivered and they send you a box filled with amazing products. This month’s box included Weleda body oil, a Chocolove bar, a soothing bath salt and a handmade Moroccan Mud Spa Bar sample from a boutique Seattle producer. You can also choose to include Midol, other feminine products, vitamins, and even supplements. It sure beats running to CVS for that stuff.
For around $13.99/month, it’s totally worth it and I will continue to subscribe. Also, one dollar of every months subscription goes to provide feminine care to women in need. I was so incredibly impressed with the packaging, handwritten letter, and the products that were included. Coming home at the end of a long day (while not feeling so great) and opening a box that reads, ‘Hello Beautiful,’ pretty much made my freaking day. Thanks Good & Lovely!
Congrats to Marsha and Susan for winning my Lovely Giveaway! When asked, “Who makes you feel the MOST loved?” they responded:
I am not sure who makes me feel the most loved. I am so blessed with so many special people. I will say my Little Fellow and I are playing a game of late – I tell him I love him, he tells me “I love you more” and I reply, “I love you more than more.” – Susan
My husband has made me most loved as he has been such an encouragement to me as I have had to deal with a chronic disease for the last 29 years. He’s such a hard worker in his teaching job to provide our necessities. The Lord has been so good to us and been a real blessing to gift me my husband for the last 36 years that loves me unconditionally. I would also have to say that my mom is a person who has taught me to love others unconditionally as well. She has gone through much in her almost 60 years of marriage and has kept her vows and been such a great example of loving unconditionally. – Marsha
I will email you ladies later today to get your mailing address! Thank you to all who participated. The prints are on sale over in my shop!
This is my second “Hello, Adulthood” post where I talk about being an adult and doing adult things. Today I want to talk about money. Specifically debt (which is actually the opposite of money). Right? When Adam and I got married in 2009, we decided two things:
- We would stop using credit cards after we got back from our honeymoon
- We would pay off all our debt (using the snowball method)
The first decision (NO MORE CREDIT) was easy. If you literally cut up your credit card, you can’t use it. The second task, however, proved to be harder than it sounded. I’m excited to say that by the end of this year, Adam and I will be debt free. It will have taken over 3 years but this whole process has been totally and completely 100% worth it. I’m not going to go into super huge-number-type details but we started off with:
- 2 of Adam’s smaller student loans
- My VISA credit card (Not going to lie- I had built up quite the balance over 5 years and a wedding)
- Two car payments
- My large student loan
Believe me, we get lots of different reactions when we tell people our end goal. We get blank stares, speeches about why we need to stay in debt in order to buy a house (yeah, we’ve heard!), honest questions, and then a few that are actually interested in hearing how we are doing it. I promise this post is NOT my way of saying that our way is the only way. I’m just proud of how far we’ve come and to honestly say that I’m so stinking excited to not have a car payment anymore. So if you’re interested, below are my tips for those trying to do the same thing we are:
1. Figure out WHY you want to pay off debt. If you don’t have actually reasons to pay off debt, you won’t be motivated. Our reasons? We want a lot of cash flow, I want to own my own business without worrying about all our expensive monthly payments, and we truly want it to be a lifelong lifestyle.
2. Budget. Adam and I budget together two months out at a time. So when the beginning of January rolled around, we budgeted for January and February at the same time. It’s fun to see that your goals might be met in 4 weeks and it really motivates you. We also like to be prepared for any type of trips, events, or larger expenses ahead of time.
3. Set goals. We set goals for after we pay everything off. That’s another motivator. We want ‘X’ amount in our savings. We want to buy a house someday. We want to take a vacation after we’re debt-free.
4. Make big sacrifices. It will take a very, very long time if you only pay your minimum payments. You really have to make sacrifices. I work 60-70 hours a week. We haven’t taken a vacation (just the two of us) since our honeymoon. We aggressively paid off my Honda CR-V in 2010, sold it, and bought a really cheap Toyota. We went without cable/internet for two years. We have ridiculously cheap rent. We religiously shop at Marshall’s.
5. Know that you’re going to make mistakes/trip up THE WHOLE TIME. After all my “advice,” you need to know that it shouldn’t have taken us 3 years to pay all of this off. We slacked most of the time and made impulsive purchases (coughiPadcough). We overdrafted. We experienced annoying car problems. We moved way too many times resulting in extra fees and expenses.
At the end of the day, I feel good about being in control of my money. I like living within our means and I don’t stress like I once did. I wish that type of peace on anyone. If you’re interested in learning more, check out Dave Ramsey’s website (we follow his plan loosely) or feel free to ask me any questions or your own tips below! Sorry this post is so text heavy! I never do this. Tomorrow…pretty pictures. I promise.
I’m not going to lie — I literally cannot think of a single thing to blog about this week. Literally. Mind=blank. With this blankness, I give you my recent iPhone photos. I’ve been completely preoccupied with a freelance wedding project. I’ve designed, proofed, printed, stamped, addressed, and am still in the process of stuffing the invitations. Very overwhelming at times but it’s so worth it when you see the final product. This – while balancing my day job, other freelance projects, romance with my husband, AND sleep – has my blog sitting over in the corner shivering in the cold…abandoned. Okay that was dramatic. I’ve also recently decided to go gluten free! We’ll save that for another blog post.
The thing is, Adam always tells me, “Sometimes you can’t do everything. Sometimes something has to be put on the back burner.” It’s true!
So for now, look at my pictures and I’ll do my best to think of something fun to share tomorrow. And yes…I have a pet mouse a work. And I gave her a Valentine yesterday.
What tends to get pushed to the side when you’re overwhelmed or stressed? Sleep? Friends? Housework? Something else?
Week 2 of the #phonephoto challenge and as you can see, the theme was RED! How perfect was this timing? Happy Valentine’s Day! I really loved compiling this post. Red is such a stark contrast to last week’s WHITE post. My favorites were Sue’s and Kate’s. What about yours?
I’m excited for next week’s challenge: GREY. I’m excited for this one the most because grey is my favorite color. Submit your photos here (details on the challenge can also be found on that page) by this Sunday at 8pm EST! Happy snapping!
I’m always saying, “Ugh. What should I take for lunch tomorrow?” I try not to eat out (and honestly there’s not a lot to choose from where I work during the day) and so I like to bring a fun lunch with me. All I have to work with is a microwave at work and so all these delicious “hot” meals always make me jealous. After awhile, a girl gets tired of the frozen burrito and PB&J sandwiches. I’ve compiled a few fun ideas for lunches and would LOVE any suggestions from you all.
- Greek Chicken Salad: I love this because I can make a large batch and mix up what I bring for the “bread.” Maybe a croissant, bread bowl, or chips!
- Lemony Shrimp and White Bean Salad: Who doesn’t love seafood for lunch!? And no need to heat it up and make all your co-workers complain about the fish smell.
- Smashed White Bean and Avocado Club: Avocado? Say no more.
- Veggie Salad with Pita: Simple and fresh. Also, no need to worry about it getting soggy.
- And of course How to Avoid a Soggy Salad: GENIUS.
Other great ideas include soups, sweet potato with chili (thanks Jess), and the ever faithful leftovers. Let’s hear your favorite lunches!