Archives for August 2015

Month: August 2015

the one with 3 gallery walls

I was asked a few weeks ago what the hardest part about moving across the country and adjusting to a new city has been. Obviously, it’s not seeing my friends and family. We’ve found ways to communicate with our favorite people, added plane tickets to our budget, and have started making friends down here so it’s getting easier every day. But I realized that besides that, it’s been pretty easy. I’m a Midwestern girl, always will be, but I absolutely will not miss the snow come January. And I’m quite excited to add Palm Trees to my Christmas decor.

But there is something that bugs me a little, something I miss. I miss my house. Being in a rental right now while we get to know the city was a difficult transition for me. I miss being able to do as I please, and as much as the responsibilities can be overwhelming, I’d really like to have the control to move the smoke detector out of the way of the stove or buy a better fridge. But until that time comes for us again, I’m making this rental as much our as I can.

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We have fewer walls than our house in Indiana, but I wanted as many of our things surrounding us as possible. So to cope I did the obvious . . . gallery walls for everyone! you get a gallery wall, you get a gallery wall, you get a gallery wall! Just like Oprah.

I didn’t want it to be ridiculous so we’ve got 3 gallery walls going on, all in different rooms, and all very different gallery walls. So today I thought I would share them and some thoughts on how I put them together.

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1. Split down the middle. . . Exact copies on each side. simple. and perfect to flank the tv in a living room.

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2. corner it up. . . our bedroom has a weird layout so the tv ( i love to watch tv in bed) has to go in a corner. to bring it all together I made a small gallery wall using both of the walls. I simple chose to keep everything above the tv, and at the same height.

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3. elclectic. . . this one is just a fun mix of all my favorite things. I just created a rectangle on the wall and put it all inside that rectangle. keeping things symetrical is the key.

What are your favorite types of gallery walls?

the one with purple shoes

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heels . blazer . shorts . similar top earrings
I don’t really wear heels that often. I’ve never really understood why you wear shoes that hurt your feet. I also have a wide foot and wide heels are hard to find. But I can’t help but acknowledge the appeal. So sometimes I just feel the need to put them on in spite of the pain, and that’s what happened with this date night outfit. There’s nothing better than purple shoes for me. I haven’t found the perfect pair of non heeled purple shoes so for now these are the perfect shoes for me until I find some a little flatter.

I found these earrings at  . . . wait for it . . . Walmart. I know! I hate going into Walmart, even in my small town. But it’s 1 of like 3 grocery stores here so I’ve started becoming a weekly frequenter of Walmart. #imissaldi So to cope with my Walmart trips, I wonder over to the accessories section to browse and I’ve found a few nice jewelry pieces there lately that I LOVE! Like seriously LOVE! and they were only $5 or $3.  So I decided to make an outfit around these earrings. The colors are grey, purple, green, and orange. I’m only missing orange, but sometimes you can have too many colors.

Are you a heel girl or a flats girl?

the one with stuff in my bag

If you haven’t heard, I’m a bit of an organizational freak. Saying I’m a clean freak is ridiculous, I can handle a layer of dust and some gooey stuff on the kitchen floor that I have no idea where it came from – disgusting but true. But for things to not be in their place and organized, I simply can’t take it. My mind will literally buzz with annoyance. So you know all the stuff in my bag is completely organized and there is nothing there that shouldn’t be. Well, that’s not true, but you’ll see.

Of course, I have the most important items . . .my wallet (several years old this is the same thing on the inside) , keys (better life bags strap), and phone (phone case). These are the 3 items that I’ll grab and throw in a smaller purse when going out with the girls, a date night, or if I just don’t want to carry all my stuff.

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I always have sunglasses in my hair (or on my shirt, or in my mouth, i’m weird), but I don’t always need sunglasses in my hair. So there are several pair just laying around the house and in my purse. Same goes for lip colors. I keep all of them in a little bag with hand sanitizer, some extra mascara, tweezers, a mirror, and lotion so they’re not just tossed around. That doesn’t always happen so once or twice a week I’ll go through and put them all back and take out the receipts and gum wrappers from the bottom of my bag.

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Then there’s the reason I have such a big bag. My planner, my life. I keep a bunch of pens, washi tape, highlighters, etc in that little black bag so I can update it whenever needed. I also usually have a little journal and my current devotional/book with me. You never know when you’re gonna have some downtime. I can do a lot on my phone, but I usually have my chrome book or our family iPad so if i find some time to do some work and wifi, I’m ready!

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Gum, water bottle, business card holder, an extra charger, and some earrings I just bought are all that’s left of the current content in my bag. They usually stay in the little pockets on the outside so they are out of the way.

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What’s in your bag?

the one with a snow leopard

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skirt in same print . white leopard print dress . earrings . beltsimilar shoe .  necklace

See I did get my hair cut! I’m still training it to stay parted on the side, and my bangs are still tormenting me as they grow out. But here we are. so far so good. I’m really happy with it. Maybe i’ll get lucky and it will hold a curl now (nope, not gonna happen without a bottle of hairspray and 400 degree curling iron)

This dress is one of my favorites, and it’s only ever been on the blog once. It was one of those rare old navy finds that actually has something extra (the back) than just a good t-shirt or crepe dress. Unfortunately, it was last year. And like most old navy extra special finds they never remake this dress. Every other thing they’ve ever made they will eventually remake just in a different color. But this dress and one other dress I got and love from there they just never bring back. It’s the one disappointing thing about Old Navy. I tried to find similar dresses, andI wasn’t having much luck so instead I linked up a few well priced snow leopard printed dressy items.

Do you have any items you love that the store just won’t bring back?

the one with Diane Kruger

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similar pant 1 // similar pant 2 // similar pant 3 . purse . newsboy cap shirt . shoes

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Diane Kruger is known as a major stylista on the red carpet. For me she either knocks it out of the park  . . . oooooorrr . . . . it’s just a little too weird for me. But her street style is almost always on point as seen above.

One of the things I’ve noticed she does is a simple fashion rule that lots of people use. But she just seems to come by it so naturally. That’s to take one outrageous, focus item and keep everything else very simple and almost classic. Sometimes it comes across classic, sometimes fun, and sometimes like above it comes off a little eclectic/boho if you will. No matter what she wears she pulls it off, and I love to look to her for inspiration.

The pants I of course couldn’t find anything like them that wasn’t sold out. It’s always like that when you need it right. But I linked up 3 that are pretty similar. Same color combo, and 2 have a pattern like hers. I linked up just one plain, plum pair for anybody who just doesn’t want to rock a pattern on bottom. I got you, girls! They gotta be the right pants for me to rock a pattern on the bottom, too.

Do you like Diane Krugers style?

the one about confidence

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swimsuit . similar shorts . sandalssunglasses . necklace

If you would have told me when I started this blog that I would end up posting this. I would have laughed at you, and said something sarcastic – ‘ok, idiot’. It wasn’t that I didn’t have confidence in myself or didn’t wear bathing suits. Actually, it was the complete opposite. I’m very confident in myself – sometimes too much. I just knew my strengths and I knew my weaknesses. Knowing how to dress for my size, and my shape was definitely a strength, but a body that people want to see in a swimsuit has never been a strength . . . that’s what I told myself.

With 3 girls in the house and a niece only 5 years younger than me, I grew up in a very woman centered household. My mother didn’t have a great childhood, but she pulled herself out of it. She was a strong woman, and so  we were taught – just kinda always knew – that women could do whatever they wanted. Some things – even if they’re just embedded into your brain or your heart – just don’t get all the way through. And so to take pictures of myself in a bathing suit just didn’t seem like the way my blog should go. But then I realized that what I want most for other women is for them to know what my mother instilled into me. I want them to have the confidence I’ve always had because of her lessons. Her story is not one I can tell, and one she doesn’t yet see the impact of. But I could stop letting my size hold me back and share some things she taught me. . .

Our body shapes, our size, if we have a thigh gap does not define who we are, what we deserve, or what we do with our lives. I may – you may – have big thighs, a flat chest, hair that just won’t sit right, stubby toes, or a muffin top. But we still deserve respect, happiness, for our dreams to come true.

Mindy Kaling is my home girl. I feel like we share so many similarities and I hope I’m correct in this. I took this excerpt from Glamour of her new book ‘Why not me?’

“Confidence is just entitlement. Entitlement has gotten a bad rap because it’s used almost exclusively for the useless children of the rich, reality TV stars, and Conrad Hilton Jr., who gets kicked off an airplane for smoking pot in the lavatory and calling people peasants or whatever. But entitlement in and of itself isn’t so bad. Entitlement is simply the belief that you deserve something. Which is great. The hard part is, you’d better make sure you deserve it. So, how did I make sure that I deserved it” 

Deserving your confidence has nothing to do with your body shape or your size. I think it has to do with how you live your life in spite of those things. Are you a helpful, respectful, hard working, God fearing (just to name a few) person? Then be confident in yourself. I don’t pretend that I know much, but one thing I have learned in my 30 years is that those are the things that will attract other people – friends or significant others.

I understand that we want to present ourselves with our best foot forward, and certain sizes and shapes don’t look good in certain types of clothing. I never would have posted these photos if it weren’t for this amazing bathing suit that fits me so well – head on over to Wear flowers in your hair for more of my thoughts on dressing for your shape.

I’m also not saying we should all post pictures of ourselves in bathing suits on the internet. Just because you do doesn’t mean you have more confidence than other girls or you’re better than they are. I certainly don’t think that of myself. I’m still not to the point where I can take off my shorts to cover up my thighs. Part of that is modesty, but I have to be honest – most of it isn’t. This post was me addressing my insecurities and the knowledge that I need to get over it – because they don’t define me. 

Friday ramblings

I figured it was about time for a little life updated around these parts. These are some of my favorite posts to read from other bloggers and some of my favorites to write so here we go with some friday ramblings 🙂

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1. the seaweed is finally leaving the beach . . . i’m sure there is some sort of science or people behind it, but i’m just glad it’s gone.

2. I’ve started watching Game of Thrones finally. Here’s what I’ve decided . . . Emilia Clarke looks better with blonde hair. If Jon Snow really is gone i will join the riot because I will miss Kit Harrington way too much, but I don’t believe he is. I’m pretty sure I have dragon’s blood. I’m really proud to be a Stark- which means I probably don’t have dragon’s blood and so I’M CONFUSED!

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3. Near the end of July,  I drove over to Tampa for a little blogger meetup. I had some of the best coffee (Buddy Brew) at the most awesome coffee shop (Oxford Exchange) with some super awesome bloggers ( Jenna from A Savory Feast, Mandy from Mandy Living Life, April from Pixie Dust Savings and Amanda from Meet @ the Barre). Highly recommend reading all these blogs, and visiting the Oxford Exchange next time you’re in Tampa.

4. Meryl has a new movie coming out today and I might just go watch it in the middle of the day by myself because . . .it’s Meryl Streep you guys.

5. i think I need this.

 

Hows your life going lately? any big plans for the weekend?

the one with christmas in july

You guys know I love Christmas. So when my friend Faith decided to do a blogger swap for christmas in July. I was ALL over it.

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I was matched with Amanda from Knock on Wood. Guys! GUYS! Her favorite color is purple. It was a match made in heaven, really. Or we’re both just good friends with Faith and she knows of our mutual love of purple. So I sent her all sorts of purple things from the bestest store ever, Target.

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She treated me to a day at the beach! Sunscreen, a magazine, a book (which is good! I read it the weekend after I got it), hair ties, lipgloss with spf, and even a snack. You’ll notice the snack is not in the pictures. I ate it. While I was opening it, I ate it. I couldn’t control it. I LOVED my gift! Thank you so mucho Amanda! Hopefully it will stop raining so I can take decent pictures and enjoy my day at the beach 🙂

Have you ever participated in a blogger swap? I highly recommend it.