One of my favorite places to stop in on daily is a cute little blog called, OH, Hello Friend.
Paired with darling shop in Fullerton, CA, Oh, Hello Friend is the design child from Danni who owns the shop with her husband. She is darling and comes up with these fantastic ideas. One said idea is something I had so much fun participating in these past couple of weeks and now I get to share it with you!
Since it’s Christmas time, what better way to celebrate the season than by giving gifts to those you love… and those you have never met.
Oh, Hello Friend started an Advent Calendar Swap. Everyone is paired up with someone and they exchange 12 little gifts all wrapped up sweetly. It was so fun picking out gifts and wrapping them for someone else hoping it would bring a smile to their face.
I was paired up with a lovely lady, Ashli, from Big Yellow Dog Designs and received my Advent Calendar on Saturday. I just can’t wait to start opening my gifts.
Check out how cute these are!
Check back in a couple of days to see what I get each day!
Christmas card season has to be one of my favorite times of year! Not only do I love receiving some good old fashioned snail mail, but I thoroughly enjoying reading about what’s happening in the lives of the people I care about.
Christmas cards are getting to be so lovely and unique, every time I see a new one, I think to myself, “Man, I wish we had done that one!” But I also love writing our yearly newsletter. Andy and I usually have moved within that year, gone on some adventure or added a new pet to the Casseday clan and we want to share about it. Sometimes it can be too much of a hassle to design a card and write a newsletter worthy of someone’s attention.
So from now on, we will be hoping on the Christmas card/newsletter hybrid trend! It’s a lovely mix of color and design from the cards with all the exciting jam packed news from the newsletters. So it’s not just a treat for your news loving brains but for your eyes as well. (Anyone else thinking Chandler’s response about Monica’s braids? A treat for the eyes and the ears!)
Last year, we used a fun template from Bird Design. It was fully customizable from the colors to the wording.
And these are some of my favorites for this year, so if you haven’t done your Christmas newsletter/card yet, check out these fun ones!
I absolutely love snow. After living on the East Coast for three years, the mere mention of snow gets me so excited!
I’m not a huge fan of the cold but when there is a fresh layer of snow, and all you have to do that is day is play, then there is no reason why you can’t bundle up and head out for adventure.
This past weekend, for Thanksgiving, Andy and I headed up to my mom and dad’s in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. We packed up all our snow gear, our boards, boots, and passes and dreamed of fresh powder on the mountains. While we didn’t have fresh snow, we did have a blast riding the mountains we so dearly love.
Every season, I get just as excited for the gear that goes along with a new season of snowboarding. Check out some of my favorites here, especially those amazing boots. Yes, please!
I hope your holiday was amazing and wonderful. We are up in Evergreen, Colorado with my family celebrating. After a long and happy day yesterday, it has been so great to just sit, relax and enjoy family.
Andy and I, with my dad, went up to Winter Park yesterday to ski the Rocky Mountains. We haven’t been able to do this in over three years. It was absolutely beautiful, but I do have to admit defeat when it happens. I was not used to the altitude and it knocked me off my feet. But I am feeling better today and celebrating what I’m thankful for, including my favorites for this past month!
I hope you are surviving Black Friday, but check these out as well!
You guys. I have such a treat for you! Are you ready?
My sweet friend Allison is an independent consultant with 31 Bags (if you have never heard of 31 Bags you are in for a delightful surprise). She wanted to bless one of my readers with their very own Metro Retro Gym Bag and Key fob like the one I have above.
31 Bags is a company based on the verse Proverbs 31. This company gives women the ability to make their dreams a reality while offering really cute bags, totes, and accessories to make my life and yours super chic! You really need to check them out!
But for one lucky reader, you get your very own gym bag and key fob!
This bag is so roomy, with lots of pockets, to outside pockets for water bottles and is made of sturdy, thick fabric that will last. I can fit my clothes, my shoes, snacks and more in this bag. Talk about your Mary Poppins bag. The key fob also can link into the bag so you don’t lose your keys in the bottom of the bag. Genius!
There is just something about handmade that just makes my heart melt.
Especially handmade dresses.
I have been in love with Fleet Collection Dresses for awhile now and have written about them several times. Not only do they make such super sweet dresses but the lovely ladies behind Fleet Collection are also super sweet. Read to the bottom to find out why!
This past weekend, I took my favorite Fleet Collection dress, the Coquette Dress in Mustard, and shot a couple of fall photos with my amazingly talented photographer friend,Cassie Rosch. If you ever need a great photographer, please check her out. She loves to travel as well. She made it so fun to dance in the leaves and play dress up.
This dress is so comfortable and even has pockets! It was made in my dreams…. and I can’t get enough of that beautiful mustard color with the delicate lace accents. This dress is perfect for summer and winter.
While on this quest to get super healthy (which I am slowly but surely doing), I have decided to take a more holistic approach to my health.
There are a lot of things that I suffer through and have come quite dependent on just the over the counter stuff to help. Whether it’s allergies (which hit me like a ton of bricks since moving back to Colorado), migraines, a knot in my back and sometimes the upset tummy from accidentally eating gluten, I didn’t want to just keep taking pills. So how excited was I when I found something that not only took care of all these but also smelled amazing?
Oh, sweet mercy!
Enter in the latest and greatest. Essential Oils. I had heard about these guys from another friend, but when my mom started using them and talking them up, I was intrigued. It wasn’t until our trip to Disney World that I became a big believer! I had woken up one morning with a horrible stomach ache and felt just queasy all day. My mom seeing a chance, put some peppermint oil in some water and gave it to me to drink. It was amazing how quickly afterward it helped. I.was.sold.
My husband calls it snake oil but you guys, there is something to be said about natural remedies. They work. And they work really, really well. I haven’t had to take migraine meds since I started using the Past Tense blend.
I only use a line called DoTerra because of the efficacy and the potency of the oil. It’s all pure essential oil. No additives, no perfumes, and no artificial ingredients. 100% all natural. Have I peaked your curiosity? Here are some of the oils I use and what I use them for. If you have any questions, just let me know. I bet these can do a lot for you too!
You can also use them to scent your room in an air diffuser. It’s amazing what a room that smells like peppermint feels like! Breath Deep.
There is just something about technology that gets me. And then there is that side where I feel like it’s OUT to get me. But I use so much technology every day to keep my little world spinning that without it, I think I might cease to exist…. or at least not be able to express myself and no one wants to see me do interpretive dance.
Recently, I have been asked several questions about what I use on a daily basis in my life to help me blog, design, stay organized or plain just be a girl on the go. I had wished when I started out on this digital journey that I had found a post about what other programs, apps, and more people were using. I just didn’t even know where to look! But since the reason why I blog is to help others out, don’t worry girl, I got your back! So if you are just starting to blog like myself or even just want to add a dash of tech to your life, buckle up. We are gonna get super nerdy up in here! These are my tech essentials.
I’m gonna break it up in two sections. Hardware and Software & Programs.
1. The most important piece of hardware I use, hands down, with out a doubt is my Mac Book and iMac. So you’re a PC lover. I hear you, I understand, you like to pinch your pennies and save on computers. I don’t blame you, but I have to tell you the reasons why I love these computers.
They NEVER get viruses. Seriously ever. And they hardly ever have any problems. I have had both of my computers 5 plus years and have had only one issue. Ever. Both of my Macs are super easy to use and every program runs smoothly. For a girl who doesn’t really know her way around a computer, I feel like I can stand my ground with these bad boys!
2. The Wacom Bamboois an amazing tool. I use it for editing pictures, hand drawn vectors and in place of mouse, the pen stylus is fantastic. It takes some getting used to, but after you use it, you will never want to go back.
3. A external hard drive– I have a Passport, like the one pictured. Because of all the graphics, photos and designs that I have, I like to have a backup incase my hard drive crashes. It’s also easy to carry for when I travel and switch between computers. It’s my tech BFF.
4. A DSLR Camera– If you are serious about blogging, designing or taking pictures. You MUST get a DSLR, that is a digital single lense camera. You don’t need a super fancy one but if you want to take great pictures, these cameras are great. They may be an investment, but you will treasure it, love it, care for it, sleep next to it and never let it go! I have a Nikon D700 and several lenses to go with it. I highly recommend one. If price is an issue, look on Amazon, Ebay or even a local photographer in your area who is looking to upgrade.
Software and Programs
1. and 2. Photoshop and Illustrator– I live and breath by these two programs. Any photo, graphic, design, image… I create, edit and design in these two programs. These two are essential. Even if you are just starting out blogging, photographing, or designing, you will be amazed at how these programs can help you. Again, these might be an investment, but if you are serious about these, I’m sure you can go without that Coach purse you’ve been eyeing! You can also try them out for free for 30 days.
3. Scribd– I have just found this program and it’s has been amazing. While most people use it for publishing articles and such, I use scribd for all my big file photos for people to download. Any time I offer a freebie as in these invites here, or this desktop calendar, I load the big file up onto scribd that way it doesn’t lose it’s resolution.
4. Dropbox– The little program is amazing. I’m talking life changing. If you have never heard of it, please stop what you are doing and download it. Dropbox is like a virtual storage area where you can drop a file into your dropbox folder and if you have dropbox installed on any other device, you are able to access it. You can also file share. When I need to share photos with clients, I will make a dropbox folder for them and share it with them. This means I don’t have to burn a CD and they files can be as big as they need to be. I store the things I never want to lose in my Dropbox because even if the apocalypse comes and my hard drives crash, as long as I have the internet, I can access my dropbox files.
If you have anymore tech essentials that I am missing out on, PLEASE share. It’s something I just can’t get enough of these days!
When ever I walk into Target around this time of year, I am reminded of that scene in You’ve Got Mailwhere Meg Ryan talks about loving the smell of scotch tape and fresh bouquets of pencils. I’m like, “girl, you and me both!”. Even after 5 plus years of no longer needing school/college supplies, I still love the idea of getting all new pens, notebooks, tape, highlighters, planners… o my gosh, I am getting excited just writing about it.
My favorite time of the summer was when we received our school supply list in the mail. Nerd Alert! Well, that time has come and gone but there is always a time for new pens and notepads, so I have put together my favorite Back to “School” necessities for the modern working girl. Sorry, no scotch tape room spray but I think there is a market out there for that…. anyone else agree? Maybe the smell of new books, just a thought.
From our fridge. I have the habit that when I am ever in a person’s home for the first time, I always check out their refrigerator. I feel like it’s a quick way to get to know them. I love seeing their family photos and so on. It’s like a big cold block biography of a home. Any time we are in a home that doesn’t have anything on the fridge, a little part of me is sad because I feel like I am missing out on fun family secrets. So without further adieu, I am going to introduce you to our fridge, just the front that is and let you get to know us a little bit better.
When we were getting married, our engagement announcement ran in my hometown paper. We had about 10 copies mailed to us and I still have about 3 left. One in my wallet, one on the fridge and one tucked away in a book for safekeeping! It is getting yellow but I love looking at it still!
This is our sponsor child from Ethiopia. We just started sponsoring him through a friend’s organization. I’m very excited about him and hope one day we get to meet him.
This went up as soon as the Rockies released their schedule. Andy loves baseball and because we no longer live in Colorado, he needs to know exactly when the Rocks play so he knows when to turn on the game and when we have to get tickets to the games around us.
Andy and I started collecting magnets from the all the places we go. We visited New Orleans for our friend’s Bach./Bachelorette Party last year and we loved it. Every time I see this magnet it reminds me our trip. The Postcard is from our Thanksgiving Trip to Ireland back in 2011.
If you haven’t heard of StickyGram you must click the link! This company can take your Instagram photos and make them into sweet little magnets. They are fun little addition to any fridge and are great conversation starters.
This is the central hub! Where we stash take out menus, pens, important coupons, post its, etc… and of course, the “I love Puggles” magnet.
This always makes me smile when I see it. We have some friends that have invited us to join them in Hawaii on a adventure of flipping houses, you can read more on that here. We are still praying about it! One night while they were visiting us, we were joking around at dinner about having an HGTV show about us. Andy casually tossed out this name and we all loved it. Our friend drew this on the receipt from dinner and put it on our fridge.
I love this family picture. It has been on every fridge I have had since I went to college. Somehow it survives every move. This was taken at my cousin’s wedding over 10 years ago. My little cousins are now taller than me, are in college or about to graduate college and now obviously Andy and I now married. It just reminds me how special family is. What is fun, is that on my aunt’s fridge, is the picture of our family from our wedding (that is when Andy and I were married).
And although I love the family photo, this section of our fridge is my favorite. It is where all the Save the Dates and Wedding Invites go. It makes me feel very blessed to know that these people love us enough to invite us to their special day (and even let me take their engagement pictures). So very excited for all these dates!
So that is our fridge. Did you learn anything about us? I would love to know! What is on your fridge?