Tuesday Ten: Agendas & Notebooks

I am “that girl” who would get excited when August came around because YAY new school supplies! But most importantly, YAY for a new agenda! I would spend at least an hour at Target in front of the planners, agendas and calendars trying to decide what I wanted. There were always so many options! And now here we are, into the first full week of August, and for many of us that means time for a new agenda! I start my new job in two weeks (!!!!) and I’ll be taking some classes this fall semester, so a new agenda is definitely necessary. I’ve put together ten agendas and notebooks that I definitely want! Now the problem I’m having is picking just one!! Maybe y’all can help me choose :)

Agenda illustration

1. This Kate Spade bookshelf agenda is definitely up there on my list! I’m a mad book lover, and a lover of all things Kate Spade, so this really seems like a match made in organizational heaven!

2. This Kate Spade black and white stripe agenda is classic Kate Spade, and I adore it

3. Somebody PRETTY PLEASE gift me this Kate Spade Emma spiral notebook! It made my Jane Austen loving heart go pittah-pattuh!

4. The Whitney English Day Designer is a planner I’ve had my eye on since I first learned about it earlier this year. The August agendas are sold out, but the January agendas will be debuting soon!

5. This Rifle Paper Co. weekly desk planner would look adorable on any desk, don’t you think?

6. Emily Ley’s Simplified Planner is another one of my favs and Emily is a woman I’ve been following on social media for a couple of years now. Check out her website, I love her outlook on simplifying and focusing on what matters most.

7. How fab is this Sugar Paper LA cabana stripe notebook! Gold foil? Yes please!

8. May Designs is a company that’s new to me and I SO wish I would have known about it through my years at MSU! You can customize pretty much ANYTHING- notebooks, planners, journals, the list goes on! Pictured is the agenda I designed with my pattern and monogram choice. Seriously, obsessed, and from now until Sunday, August 10 take 40% off everything on their website! Check out their website here and start customizing! The customization I did can be found here.

9. Oh Lilly, your fun patterns really get me. This large Trippin and Sippin agenda is one of my favorite patterns!

10. More Lilly, of course :) This large Lilly Lovers agenda speaks right to my pink lovin heart :)

So there we have it, 10 of my favorite agendas and notebooks for this new season that’s starting soon! When I narrow down my choice and finally choose one I’ll let you know :)  Do you have any favorite ways to stay organized? Can you help me with the Kate Spade vs. Lilly Pulitzer debate? :)

DIY: Glass Etching

Hi there! Today I’m sharing one of my absolute favorite DIYs- glass etching! My mom, being the craft goddess that she is, first shared how to do this a couple years ago and since then it’s been my go to for personalized gifts. One of the coolest Spartans I’ve ever met, everyone’s #SpartanMom, MaryLou Moore actually gave me the idea for this post a while ago. She tweeted out a picture of a coffee mug with her name on it and said something along the lines of not being able to find one that said “@CrazyMSULady.” I thought, what a perfect example of how to personalize a gift for someone awesome in your life. So MaryLou, thanks for the inspiration! And I now have a gift that will be waiting for you the next time you come to East Lansing ;) Picture heavy post coming- be warned :) IMG_2122First up- supplies! You’ll need -The piece of glass you would like to etch -Vinyl -Armour Etch (which can be found at your local craft store. We picked ours up at Michaels) -Painters tape -A plastic tool for applying the Armour Etch -Contact paper -The gypsy -And last but not least, a cricut machine! (which I could probably do an entire post on- it’s AWESOME!) IMG_2124Here we have the gypsy! Another amazing crafting tool. This is where I created the design I wanted to etch. It’s convenient because all of the cartridges that go with the cricut cutting machine are uploaded here and all in one place. The gypsy allows you to choose what size mat you want to design on, then you get to work laying out exactly what you want to cut! IMG_2127 After you’re done designing on the gypsy, connect it to the cricut cutter, load the mat with the vinyl stuck to it, and hit cut! IMG_2128 Once the design is cut out unload the mat and peel the vinyl off the mat. Now, since we’re etching what you want to do is remove the letters (or whatever your design happens to be) and keep the outline. Be sure to be careful with those pesky a’s, e’s, b’s, etc.! (This tool I used came in a cricut kit my mom picked up) IMG_2129 After you’re done removing all the letters, cut your contact paper to size IMG_2130 IMG_2131 Once the contact paper is stuck to the vinyl slowly start to peel back so the vinyl is removed from its paper backing, once again being careful of those pesky a’s, e’s, etc. Next line it up and stick it to the glass. Remove the contact paper leaving just the vinyl stuck to the glass. This next part is uber important make sure there are no air bubbles surrounding the letters and the vinyl is completely smooth. If the glass etching compound finds any air bubbles it will fill that area and you’ll end up with areas etched that you do not want etched. This has happened to us a few times and starting over from the beginning is no fun. IMG_2132 Next, use the plastic tool to apply the etching compound to the glass. Use a generous amount and make sure that ALL areas are covered. Leave the compound on for 10 minutes.  This mug was a little bit tricky, because it wrapped around I had to keep adjusting the etching compound so it didn’t slide down onto the glass. When the 10 minutes are up, scrape the excess etching compound back into the container (the compound can be a bit pricey, so we save as much as possible at this house!). Rinse the mug with water, making sure you wash off the rest of the glass etching compound, and peel off the tape and the vinyl. IMG_2143

IMG_2145 IMG_2146

And VOILA! A super fun, personalized gift!   My mom and sister are super crafty. Awesomely crafty. And I do what I can ;) so over the years we’ve created quite a few gifts (if we’re close you probably have some kind of personalized mug or wine glass from me) and decorative items for our dorm rooms/apartments at school! Below are some of the things that were hanging around my apartment when I lived at MSU. **Apology for the poor camera quality/bad lighting. One day I’ll get a super cool DSLR camera but until then it’s my trusty Canon digital camera and iPhone to the rescue :)

IMG_2133 IMG_2134 IMG_2135 IMG_2136 IMG_2137 IMG_2138 IMG_2140 IMG_2141 IMG_2142That skittle machine was a labor of love y’all! There is no Spartan helmet on any of the cricut cartridges (BUT if they made one my life would be SO much easier!) and I had to print it, trace it on to vinyl, cut it with an exacto knife, then etch it. It took for-ev-er. But so worth it.

I hope you enjoyed it! If you don’t happen to have a cricut machine, or gypsy for that matter, I have seen people simply cut out and arrange stickers then apply the glass etching compound the same way :)

I LOVE personalized gifts. Tim keeps telling me to open up an Etsy store, but we’ll see! (Don’t worry MSU licensing, I know the rules ;)

Catching Up

Remember when I said I wouldn’t fall into the “too busy to blog” hole again? Woof. Well here I am, after quite the break. And if you’re not my parents, sister, or boyfriend reading this, bless you.

I’m back, with a plan this time, and I think it’s going to make all the difference. Quick recap, I got pretty sick and it knocked me on my butt for a while, but here I am, and I’m pretty excited about the things I have planned to share with you!

When 2014 started I was in a hotel room in southern California getting pumped for the Rose Bowl the next day (go green!). My two year internship ended in early December and I really had no idea what I wanted to do so I just started jotting down ideas about what would make 2014 my best year yet. Right at the top of my list, number 1, I put EXPERIENCES OVER THINGS, and so far I seem to be doing a pretty good job of that. Summer finally hit Michigan last month and so far it’s been fabulous. I’ve spent time with my family, my best friends, and lots of time on the lake at Tim’s. Here are some of my favorites:

peoniesSeriously, nothing better than peonies

beach volleyballBeach volleyball with some best friends, followed by swimming and grilling? Don’t mind if I do

whitecaps

Tim and I took in our first Whitecaps game of the year. Frozen drink standard.

twisted rooster

When your boyfriend tells you to get dressed because he’s taking you out to dinner, and where you’re going is a surprise, you throw on a sundress and race to the car. And then you end up at Twisted Rooster, one of the coolest restaurants around. Locally grown food, and Faygo in a glass bottle. It’s the bomb.com.

book of mormon

I finally got to see The Book of Mormon at Wharton Center with my best friend! Laughed out loud the entire time! It’s not a show for everyone, but we loved it, and so did everyone sitting around us!

zoo

I got to spend some quality time with my entire family at the Detroit Zoo (got that vitamin Z) at a private event my mom’s company hosted. I wanted to see lions, tigers, and polar bears and luckily got all three. Also fell in love with the red panda. This was my “hurry up and take a picture of me with the polar bear before it runs away again!” picture :)

gr brewing

We tried Grand Rapids Brewing Co. for the first time! Make sure you’re a little bit hungry when you go and order That Pizza Thing. I promise you won’t be disappointed!

waverunning1

This Fourth of July was one for the record books. Tim’s family has a big extravaganza every year and it just keeps getting better and better! One of my best friends, Kaitlyn, came to the lake for the first time. I took her out on the wave runner (my first time driving in over a year) and though it was touch and go at times, we both survived. And by survived I mean got back to land in one piece without being thrown off and ate our weight in delicious snacks and other food for an entire afternoon, with some volleyball, time on the water trampoline,  and relaxing thrown in to mix it up.

sissy fourth

If you read one of my earlier posts (bless you) then I’ve already introduced you to my baby sister Kristina, who happens to be the coolest thing since sliced bread. She brought some friends up for the day and it was so fun hanging out with her! Also, her face when she went tubing for the first time, priceless :)

lantern fourth

If you know Tim, you know the kid loves fireworks, and he’s been stocking up since Memorial Day weekend.The only things I ask for when we go? Floating lanterns and neon sparklers. So sissy, Kaitlyn, Caroline and I all sent a floating lantern up from the beach while listening to “at last I see the light” from Tangled. And all was right with the world.

Like I said- woman with a plan this time- so stay tuned! And if you’re in the Grand Rapids area go eat at Twisted Rooster!

 

New Beginnings

Well hello there. It’s only been, what, three months since my last post? And over a year from the last post to the one before? I fell into that start a blog then get “too busy” to keep up with it hole. And I really have no excuse for it, especially not these past few months. So here I am, starting again :) With so much inspiration all around me I wanted a place for me to share and enjoy it, focusing on what really makes me happy! So here goes nothing!

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Fitness Friday

yesterday-you-said-tomorrow

So I started working out again today. Or, maybe it should be: so I started working out again today! This year I let myself go, with the three jobs and school and long distance relationships it just became easier to say “I don’t have the time” or “I’d rather go to sleep” and, the best, “sure I can have pizza for lunch four days a week because I live at the Union and have no time to make lunch at home.”

Seriously. There were weeks I ate pizza and two bosco sticks for lunch four days. And I got good at making excuses for it.

But, no more! It’s spring and I’m home and so is my sister Kristina, the super fit athlete. So this afternoon I told her to run me through a work out, and boy did she ever. Here’s what we did:
-Two 7 minute intervals of jump rope 50 times, 15 squats, 10 sit ups, 5 burpees, and repeat as many times as you can in 7 minutes, take a 2 minute rest, then do it again.
-Core (from randomabs.com): 8 oblique V ups, 10 regular V ups, 20 crunch twists and 10 side bends repeat three times
Now I know it doesn’t sound that intense, but give it a try, I’m sure you’ll feel different!

It sucked. I was exhausted and dehydrated and just wanted to stop, but I didn’t, and Sissy wouldn’t let me. Even though she lapped me twice, because she’s a beast, she kept encouraging me. Nothing about this was a competition, she just pushed me to keep going at my own pace. And I think that’s what everyone needs, someone who will push them and encourage them and believe in them.

So I’m putting it out there to the web that I’m really trying to get fit and eat better this summer, and Sissy is here to help (until she leaves for Australia)!

Are any of you getting fit this summer? Have any healthy recipes or fitness tips you want to share?

 

Lessons Learned: Spark and Hustle

I had the opportunity to attend Tory Johnson’s (of Good Morning America) Spark and Hustle conference last Thursday. My boss at A Moment In Time, Jen House, was one of the three featured speakers for the day. I learned a whole lot at the conference, but one of the parts of the conference that really stuck with me was a short video featuring SurePayroll CEO Michael Alter. He talked about how to grow your small business, but really, these lessons apply to anyone!

1. Mistakes are the fastest way to learn and grow

2. Use being small to your advantage, you can adapt faster– this was more focused on a small business, but think about it, you are responsible for you and creating your opportunities, and it should be relatively easy for you to stay flexible and adapt

3. It’s okay to say no, even if it’s tough. Not everything is a good fit. (more…)