December life + blogging goals


Last month I decided to intentionally set a month of goals for my real life and my blogging life (though they are one and the same, really! Ha. ) There is something about having a goal written down and put out there for others to see, I find that I buckle down and do most of what I set out to do. Which I love! I am a goal oriented, write it all down, won't quit because I said so kind of gal. If I say I will do it I will. So! Without further ado, here are my December Life + Blogging goals:

Life Goal for December

1) The other night we sat down as a family and created a bucket list of holiday activities for our family. They included making cookies (sugar cookies, peppermint bark, and maybe chocolate dipped pretzel rods?), going to the downtown Christmas tree lighting and the free holiday movies at the State Theater, going to see The Polar Express on Christmas Eve, driving around to see the lights one night, and watching some of our favorite Christmas on TV. We may add more as the month goes on!

2) I have been consistently working towards working out three times a week (as a minimum), with zero excuses for a month or so. That means I often work out at 5:50 am on the days I work, but I find I am really refreshed and like "getting it out of the way." Who knew?! 

I also want to add that I am working on not binging a lot on holiday goodies, too, because there are a lot of opportunities to eat ALL THE FOOD, and choosing a day to eat it all is enough! I say no a lot more than I want to, but I feel better in the long run.

3) Since joining Monat as a marketing partner (after trying the magical shampoo ONCE, it is that good…I promise!), I have wanted to share the news about it. I mean, we all use shampoo, and if you have stuff that makes your hair look great without chemicals and with minimal effort, what's not to love? I'm looking to share what makes this stuff so special with you, because I know if you try it you will never use anything else. I PROMISE. 

To learn more (in 60 seconds or less!), click HERE!

To see my personal hair transformation, click HERE!

To see the products we offer, click HERE! (You can join up right there, too!)

Please email or comment below if you are interested in learning more!

4) My last personal goal is to just enjoy every moment of this season. With all that needs to get done and all the stress that usually accompanies making sure everything gets done and all the gifts are bought, this time of year is not always the best. I am trying to enjoy each part of what is to come, from the twinkling Christmas lights, the constantly playing holiday music, to the joy on my children's' faces as they await December 25th, and not let the stress get to me. 

Blogging Goals for December:

1) Last month I decided to begin posting 5 days a week again, and it totally changed how I felt about blogging! Consistently writing content and planning what is to come just makes it all flow better, you know? The more I write the more ideas come to me, and the more opportunities arise through blogging (which often means more money!) Who doesn't want that? I plan on blogging five days a week in December, too.

2) I only have one other goal this month for blogging (because this time of year is CRAZY!), but I have been slacking off on commenting on other blogs and I want to do better. I am still reading as much as I can, but I miss the interaction of commenting and I plan to do better this month. I am setting aside time each day to reading and commenting on the blogs I love the most. 

Tell me! What are some of your blogging/life goals this month?

How to raise a free spirited daughter


Molly is wearing the Pleased to Meet You Alice dress from Little Skye Kids’ Boutique Clothing

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Little Skye Boutique, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #embracechildhood

I should have known, when she arrived three weeks early (after a blindingly fast four hour labor,) that she would keep us on her toes. And she has! My little girl... she is a free spirited, independent, smart, stubborn, happy go lucky, always doing SOMETHING, fiercely opinionated little girl. She knows what she wants, and she will debate it all day with you if you let her (which is mildly painful sometimes. HA.) We've always said that she has all the qualities you want in a grown woman, but housed in a little girl body it can be a lot. She just knows what she likes, and has definite opinions of how things should be. I love her to the moon!

The biggest area that she has an opinion on is how she dresses. For a long time she would only wear princess dresses. ALWAYS. She would walk into a restaurant with the skirts held in her tiny fingers like the royalty she was, clicking her plastic heels along the way. I always have taken the stance that as long as she is dressed weather appropriate, and in a way that is respectful to where she is (no Jasmine crop top costumes at school…;), then she has mostly free reign. It makes us both happier! I mean, I obviously have pretty strong views on how I want to look, and I understand the power of wearing something that makes you feel your best. While the looks she can put together make me inwardly cringe sometimes, I try to focus on her happiness and whether or not she feels good in something.

You see, I don't want to crush her spirit. I want her to dress the way she chooses, create crazy art projects in her room, write her own comic book stories, and enjoy the things that she likes, with no pressure from me. She and I are very different in what we like sometimes, and that is OKAY.

Molly likes to dress one of two ways: either exclusively in yoga pants and a sweatshirt (can't blame her there!), or really whimsically and imaginative. I like that Little Skye Kids’ Boutique Clothing is a children's clothing boutique that has one of a kind items, that let children be children. I am often really drawn to classically cute clothes. I love pieces of clothing that let Molly look her age. I mean, she's seven! I like her to look seven, with some modesty and whimsy and spunk. That's what I love about Little Skye Kids’ Boutique Clothing, they have different things, you know? They are a premier provider of clothing for children of all ages, and I know Molly and I both fell in love with the Pleased to meet You Alice dress she is wearing above (styled exclusively by her!)

Here are a couple of things I found that would be perfect to shop at Little Skye Kids’ Boutique Clothing this holiday season:

How cute is this ruffled reindeer dress (it would be the PERFECT Christmas Eve.)

I love a vintage little girl look, and this jumper would be cute styled with boots and colorful tights.

If you are looking for holiday dresses for girls, I love this lace overlay dress (lovely for Christmas Day!), and this long sleeve red tulle dress (we are going to The Nutcracker this year and this dress would be adorable.)

I can't even handle the cuteness of this shearling lined jacket. I kind of want it myself.

Oh MY, these Prairie boots are so cute! They would look so cute with leggings and dresses.

I am a total sucker for a Peter Pan collar on a dress for girls. Swoon.

The key for me to raising this free spirited little girl? I let her have her way in things that don't matter in the long run. Does it matter if she is styled perfect for my friends (or the internet world) to see? No. Is she happier when I let her express herself in the way she dresses? Yes. I will say that on school picture days and such I may lead her into an outfit of my choice, but other than that I let her be her. And you know what? She does a pretty darn good job of it. I'm a proud mama;)

Deal alert! All Paper Wings for Little Skye and Blu Pony Vintage for Little Skye purchases through 12/15/2015 receive a Free Shipping & a $25 gift card valid on future purchases for every $100 spent when you use code BLGLS2015.



Free People sweater (on sale, only $59!) and ruffle tank; Forever 21 jacket, old (similar); Target boots; Rebecca Minkoff bag.

For the past month or so I have been obsessed with wearing all neutrals. No pops of color for this girl! Bring on the nudes and beiges, grays and blush! There's something so wearable about an all neutral look. It blends in, it looks good mixed and matched together, and it is easy to put something together at 6am. 

I bought this sweater (at full price, mind you. #fail) about a month ago, and I SWEAR, I wear it about twice a week. I recently picked it up in black on Black Friday for under $60 and can't wait for it to arrive! This Regan Satchel is another deal of mine I found (it was 40% off!) It was SUPPOSED to be my Christmas present from my husband, but the second it arrived I put all of my stuff in it and haven't changed it out since. I love the color and the zipper/tassel details. 

Lastly, I've found that when I work it doesn't make sense to wear a bright lipstick, which I typically LOVE wearing. I don't have time to reapply and it's just too high maintenance. I picked up a set of three nude lipsticks from QVC (similar option) a couple of weeks ago and I love how easy they are. While they don't show up well in a blog photo, in person they are really wearable and just the right color of nude. 

Tell me, you you resort to neutrals more often, or are you a brights girl?

A grownup version of a christmas wish list


Free People top, Target fringe boots.

While I'm knee deep in figuring out what EXACTLY the kids want for Christmas this year (Molly's number one want is 'every Shopkins', ugh!), it's always fun to pick up a little something for myself for under the tree. The holiday season is pretty stressful around here, and everywhere a woman is in charge of doing ALL the shopping and planning, am I right? There are so many tasks to do before we can really sit down and ENJOY it, so, I like to get myself a little something sometimes for all my hard work. And my husband likes to take my lead and buy me something I tell him I want. Ha! THIS makes for pretty fun Christmas morning. I'm not a huge surprise person, either, so getting exactly what I've been wishing for is pretty fun for me! 

(Though I wouldn't cry over a brand new iPhone 6 plus under the tree, either;)

Here is what I've been lusting over (and I think you will LOVE, too!

These red peep toe heels with a jaunty bow on the back, that are JUST RIGHT for the holidays. (Pssst. They're 50% off right now!)

This draped and cozy Free People sweater in Oatmeal (that I couldn't stop myself from ordering last weekend.) Merry Christmas to ME.

A pair of black fringe Sam Edelman booties (because you can never have enough fringe.)

A decadent taupe colored Rebecca Minkoff bag (that was an early present from my husband to me!)

I keep seeing these Kate Spade Sailor's knot bracelets on Pinterest layered with a simple watch (I've been DROOLING over a simple black banded Daniel Wellington one!) I NEED.

One of my favorite Free People sweaters that I own in soft pink is now on sale until 11/30, (I think I need it in black…)

Tell me, what have YOU been lusting over this holiday season?



Today I am thankful for...

The good health of my children and husband;

Two kids that make me laugh every single day;

The messes I clean up daily, because it means I have children to clean up after;

A husband that values me and our children;

A warm house with delicious candles burning and cinnamon rolls in the oven;

Friends to spend the holiday with, as family lives far away, always;

Being able to turn a year older each year and be healthy for my children and husband;

Work that makes me happy, and being able to help out where I can;

A blog that continues to inspire me each day;

Friends that are spread out all over the country (but are only a phone call away);

A marriage that makes me feel so lucky and grateful, daily;

Wonderful family members that are some of my best friends;

Christmas music playing constantly on Pandora;

and my readers that have stuck by me and come back for more year after year, I adore you!

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!