Sunday, January 26, 2014

Valentine's Gifts or Decor Made Easy!

Trust me... this is one blog post you may want to "pin" away in your "awesome gift ideas" folder :) 

This may come as a huuuugggeee surpise to some of you... Ok...maybe none of you...let's be real. I LOVE MONOGRAMS. If I could afford it, I would monogram every piece of clothing I own. So far every pj set I have has my initials on it somewhere.

I can't be the only one, I mean, we are in the south. However, I realize some readers (if anyone even reads this old thing anymore) are from all over and may not feel the same... But I do know a sweet Canadian who could be my southern sister, so who knows- you either love it or you hate it. My real sister hates it. My sister in law doesn't get it either. So for those of y'all who think monogramming should fade out once potty training begins, this may not be the post for you BUT DON'T LEAVE JUST YET bc I bet chances are you KNOW someone who loves a good monogram :)


I love how personalized monogramming is. Think of the endless possibilities you could come up with having these monogram vinyl stickers I just found on Etsy.

 I cannot recommend Aimee Ogden Design's shop on Etsy enough! Aimee has been the sweetest seller and I have ordered multiple packages from her that have gotten here so fast it's nothing less than impressive (California to Georgia, at that!) I want you all to know, I use her and I PAY for her quality vinyl- this is NOT a sponsored post. In fact, I had to ask for her permission to blog this :) I was just that happy to share the few ideas I came up with!

Everyone knows how much I love Valentine's Day- I adoreeeee it so much, I'm not even a cheesy typical chocolate and flowers or pink/red girl, I just think it's a fun holiday for some reason. Remember my other Valentine's Day post with the conversation hearts? Anyhow, let's get this going! 

I shared my monogrammed vase on Instagram and the ideas started flowing. I was so shocked how great the vinyl jazzed up this thrift store glass I was excited to experiment on more! I decided to share a quick little Valentine's Day gift idea or just a great gift in general- think wedding showers, birthdays, etc! Keeping it as your own decor is totally appropriate as well- and with her prices you can afford to gift some and snag one for yourself!

Ok, here goes!

I started with a Bath & Body Works candle for three reasons:

1- they smell incredible
2- they have great coupons (I never pay retail which is $20- this current one was $6 at semi annual)
3- the label is actually MEANT to be taken off, so it comes off easily without leaving any residue

The only CON to the B&BW candle is how short lived it is. That being said, it still works great
 for the job, and it's not like the vinyl is expensive. This isn't really a con because I have salvaged these jars by taking the wax out and reusing the jars for candy or flowers and guess what? The vinyl survives the dishwasher so you can reuse the jar even after washing the candle out!

There are a few more reasons why I love these candles- did you know they have a satisfaction guaranteed policy? Even after burning, say you hate the smell or it gave you a migraine- you can return it! I never tried but I saw a lady do it and the guy was so nice and let her pick whatever she wanted instead! 

After peeling the label I do a quick wipe-down to make sure the surface is clean and ready for the sticker.

When peeling back the sticker from the backing, make sure the letters come off and stick to the clear adhesive. The S and G we're tricky, but slow and steady gets the job done.

The easiest way to stick the sticker on is to gently place it on the jar after guesstimating where you want it to be placed, center first. Once I laid the G down very gingerly, I started patting it down outwards. This helps for centering and of course, bubbling. 

I start rubbing the sticker down to make sure there aren't any air bubbles and take a gift card to work on the weird edges I want to keep down for good.

After I peel the clear adhesive side off, the vinyl is set on the candle! Just for good measure and my own assurance I go ahead and do a final press down.

And then you're done!!! You have a fully customizable gift for UNDER $10! 

{To get this look: I ordered Aimee's3x3 Metallic Gold sticker in Style 3}

I looooove my candle! I think it adds such a great touch on our coffee table! Just imagine how
surprised someone would be to have their own personalized candle :)

Of course I couldn't just stop there.... I told Aimee I wanted to try them on wineglasses! She has a listing for 4 stickers you just won't even believe how cheap.... 

After some reassurance from her that she has them on her own, and they have withheld the multiple washes in the dishwasher, I went ahead and put them on my own! Let me go ahead and say... If you
are doing the wine glasses....practice with a spare- if it works, great, use the spare on your cell phone!
 Also, don't make life harder by getting the circle design haha Aimee told me the diamond style is best for wine glasses. I wish I listened. I ended up not being able to figure out the circle design on the round curve of the glass so I just ditched the idea altogether. Quitter.

Soooooooooooooo, I had to improvise.

But I'm not mad about it, they look great regardless! Such a classic twist on a kitchen staple ;) wine glasses are a staple around here at least. 

Let me add, you can get glasses anywhere for super cheap- these were from TJ Maxx for $5.99 for the set of 4! Another expensive looking gift for around $10! Who would ever guess??! Imagine how thoughtful gifting these with your single girlfriends monogram and a nice bottle of wine to go with them! I don't think Valentine's is only for couples, I think it's for everyone! They make a great gift for anyone- not just on Hallmark's best selling holiday :) I hope future recipients of my new favorite gift don't read my blog... haha. 

Remember monogram etiquette when ordering, since she will only print what you tell her- in the order you put it. With all the dos and don'ts of initial placement it's nice to just check before ordering! 

The affordable gifts just got more affordable... Not only is Aimee the best vinyl seller out there, but after asking her permission to post this, she offered 10% off purchases over $5! Don't miss out on this! Go over and see all her styles and colors she offers and let your imagination run wild! You can stick these on everything, trust me, I know. Just enter the code: ORDYANDJOON at checkout for your discount. I wanted to get this post up for y'all to be able to order them in advance for valentines day, but don't forget them for any future gift ideas! 

Now, just because I'M a fan of circle monogram, I know you may be wondering if she does the beloved scroll monogram as well- she does! She offers the best combination of style and colors I have seen out there... I have no doubt you'll find just what you're looking for- good luck on narrowing your choices down! 

Think of all the planners, iPad covers, iPhone covers, laptop covers, glasses, frames, cars, trays, decorative plates, lamps (yes, the thought crossed my mind...) and everything else you can think of that would look SO much better personalized! 

{Target planners and Amazon ipad case- you'd never know I spent about $15 for each!}

Sunday, October 20, 2013

What Makes You Happy?

The other day I was trying to think of when I was happiest- and I realized it was when I put my health as my top priority. Not work, not school, nothing but my health. I was working out regularly and I was on top of my "diet" (I mean that as in what I ate, not calories counted etc). I was just all around HAPPY! It was such a joy to be on top of my health and finally crush all the naysayers and the food "addiction" (sweet tea, chickfila breakfast biscuits, yogli mogli... no dramatic addiction but in all honesty- the addiction that would make me get out of bed at 1 am and grab some ice cream and hostess rolls....) I was happy and a mere by product of me being on top of my health was the weight loss. The most important part was how I felt- how I looked in my skinny jeans was just a plus.

and naturally, in the months I give up my health and let it take a backseat- oh, surprise- there aren't many pictures of me anywhere ha. But lots of pictures of my BAD food. As though it's something to be proud of...

SOOOOO. All that being said... On October 28 my gym is hosting a paleo challenge... and it's actually the SAME challenge I did two years ago and lost all the weight for the wedding (I took the one month and did it for longer of course... but you know what I mean).

I'm excited to do this because my migraines have returned (the ones that vanished with Whole30), and after working out almost every day...(i'll explain later) I realized that abs are truly made in the kitchen... and I'm not seeing results as great as I was when I was paleo + gym. PLUS... I miss all the energy! I can't wait. I am only blogging because I want to be held accountable. From here on out, I don't want to post instagram food cheats or anything... It's all about accountability. Also, there's nothing for me to worry about since it ends on Thanksgiving. The 30 day challenge begins in 8 days and I wanted to post in case anyone else wanted to join in- I am giving myself a week to meal plan and prepare loads of my tried and trued recipes since the biggest set back is "fail to plan, plan to fail"... I want NO excuses for the challenge. If y'all have any good recipes that you love let me know! I have a paleo pinterest board I'll be going back through as well.

It won't be easy, but it will be worth it. I love hitting the restart button on my body every now and then. But it is a LOT easier than Whole30 haha.

True story. I have been known to eat an entire bag of Entenmann's powdered donuts in one sitting.

If you want to start this challenge with me I would love it! If you do, I highly suggest starting with MEASUREMENTS and PICTURES! and yes, weigh yourself on day 1 and day 30 and THAT IS IT! (DON'T FORGET THE ANTI-SCALE MOVEMENT!)

Anthro had a sale Saturday and I bought some AMAZING Mother jeans that are one size too small... I tried them and they didn't button and I said, "I'm one paleo challenge away... I think I'll get them." So, that's my motivation. The jeans and this awesome dress that I can't even zip. Yet. :)

So, what are you waiting for?! Let's do this!!!!!!! If you have any questions I bet you I have googled it/read a blog post about it and can help shine some light- I'm no expert but I can probably help a little. Also, for reference: our gym is using this link as guidance. Ignore the point system and just go down to the explanation of what is or isn't paleo. I also hope to utilize the "tag" feature of the blog and just have y'all click on paleo or paleo recipes for quick references. Hope I can help in any way, I know I will do better if I just have some accountability!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

My Workout Flow

There are two things that motivate me to hit the pavement and get some cardio in....

1.) New workout attire
2.) Good tunes

Music is soooo important for me. I actually make playlists for my runs depending on my mood. Sometimes, when I run to clear my head- I won't even listen to upbeat stuff to make me run faster... I listen to Ray Lamontagne/Jon Foreman/The xx/Bright Eyes and just enjoy  my time out of the house. I look around and make the exercise more leisure than anything else. It's the "clear your head" type of run/walk. 

When I really want to feel motivated though, which I imagine most people running and listening to music are looking for- I have a specific playlist- AND a list of order in listening to. I dunno, it makes me look forward to the end of some and beginning of others- the routine helps me prepare when to run harder/faster and when to cool down. Now, I am no expert runner, in fact- I am TERRIBLE. This is just what I like and it helps ME jog easier on the polluted streets haha. 

Ok, here goes! You can listen to them on youtube before you decide to drop any change on them in the itunes store- I know not many people like the same music as me- but this is a pretty general workout playlist! 

When I first start jogging... and am not really feeling it because I'm lazy/tired/creaky knees and all... I cruise to: 
The XX - "Intro"

I have a huge HUGE hill to walk up before I even start my jog (think 8 incline) so, this is just enough to get me going/excited to start. 

Side note: everyone has a soundtrack to their lives (break up songs, happy songs, favorite songs, etc... in my movie of life, the opening credits have me in an X6 cruising on some curvy mountainside roads  to this jam- I could totally see this song in a car commercial!)

This song makes me take longer strides but still jog at a normal pace- almost gazelle like haha. It's my warm up song and as soon as it is over, I'm usually ready to go! 

As soon as the xx stops playing, I'm excited to listen to this: 

Lissy Trullie - Ready For The Floor (Cover)

something about the repetitive, "do it now" makes me take the whole jogging seriously :) and glad that I DID "do it". (think "NIKE"... haha)

Once I am really starting to go, my next track is: 

Andrew Bird- Fake Palindromes

This song has the best beat that just makes you jog in tune with it. I love that there are some slow parts and I can catch my breath when I am on a "low" with him, and then when he turns it up, so do I! I used to use the treadmill at college with this on repeat and I would kill it. However, don't ask me about the lyrics-when you're busy trying to figure it out, you forget you're miserable jogging....!!!! That's my lyric disclosure haha. 

Once Mr. Bird has worn me out a bit, the minute I hear the steady drumbeat of these two twins, I know I am ready to do a cool down/steady walk. What I wouldn't give to be the triplet! Teagan & Sara & Sheila I think it goes, don't you?! 

Teagan & Sara - "Walking With a Ghost"
I think the name is so appropriate for the mere fact that it is my walking song
Another funny no pun intended title is the next song: 

Matt & Kim- "Block After Block"

This is when I'm like, ok, break's over- pick it back up but slowly, like the xx "intro", a steady jog/gazelle like jog haha block after block... trust me... it works. and the video just makes you happy. so if you just imagine the video happening in front of you- you totally forget you're jogging (not really.. haha) 

This is another song I catch my breath on and just enjoy a steady pace. It's still got a beat that my feet follow along with... ignore the video... in fact. don't watch it. You won't be watching it on your run :) - the actual MGMT one is worse. ha. 

MGMT - Kids

I wind down and head back home to this: 
Passion Pit - Take a Walk
It's a faster walk, another uphill incline one- so it's definitely with purpose haha. 

Sometimes, the only thing that gets me going (usually treadmills at the gym) is my dance cardio station... aka Ellie Goulding and all that jazzy stuff.