5 Friday Finds: Inexpensive Fall Decor & Style

1. Gold frames from Dollar Tree

These frames look way more expensive than the one dollar that they are! I bought two 8x10s and two 4×6 frames, and I could use a few more.

2. Glasses from Warby Parker

I’ve written about my love for Warby Parker glasses before, but my loyalty was recently renewed after my eye appointment last week. My eyes have gotten worse, a symptom of now being in my late twenties, and they tried REALLY hard to get me to buy glasses in the store. Even with my vision insurance, the glasses were still more than Warby’s, and they weren’t as cute! Nor did they give one pair away when you buy one. The sales lady was skeptical of my $99 glasses, and sniffed, “These are way better quality that what you’re buying online.” I told her they have the same anti-glare, anti-scratch coatings and the frames are acetate – which is exactly what the ones they sell are made of – but oh well. I’m shopping for some new frames tonight, although I might stick with my “Wilkie” frames. Brian called them “sexy librarian” style, and I’m ok with that.

3. Target Dollar Spot Pumpkins and Towel

I always love the fall stuff in the Dollar Spot (or Bullseye’s Playground? Whatever it’s called) bins, and I couldn’t resist the velvet pumpkins. I bought all they had left, three of this light green color, for $3 each. Some stores apparently have navy blue ones, and I’m very jealous. These mini porcelain pumpkins are too cute, and were $1 each. Here’s a link to similar-ish ones online. The towel has stitching in rose gold/copper, so that’s going to look stellar in my kitchen!

4. Zoya Purple Nail Polish

I’m going to the dark side, and trying this on my fingernails. Zoya nail polish doesn’t contain the “big 3” most harmful chemicals. This color is called “Debbie,” and it’s perfect for fall. Tip: if you’re not sure about a bold or dark color, I find that I typically like using it on my toes.

5. Fur Pillow from TJ Maxx

Maybe this pillow looks a little ridiculous, but I don’t care. IT’S SO FLUFFY I COULD DIE. So cozy and soft, it’s perfect for cuddling with my coffee and a good book. Here’s couple more options if you’re interested in adding some texture to your couch: Amazon fur pillow, TJ Maxx patterned fur pillow.

What’s one thing you’re loving? Let me know in the comments!

5 #FridayFinds: New Workout Pants, De-Cluttering Videos, and More

I love sharing these little lists on occasion of things I’m loving. Here’s some things I’ve recently discovered, purchased, found useful, or been inspired by:

1. My exercise pants – with pockets!

I’ve long envied my sister-in-law’s workout capris with side pockets, and she got them for me for my birthday! I love capris, because they’re not as hot as pants (not wearable most of the time here) but they obviously provide more coverage than typical exercise shorts. But my pet peeve was not having any pockets. These Champion workout capris have a long pocket down the side of each leg that can easily fit a phone, tissues, keys, whatever you need to take with you when working out, or just lounging around the house. And they won’t break the bank.
These have become my got-home-from-work uniform, my working-from-home uniform, and my weekend uniform. Versatility!

2. Face primer

I recently got on a kick of watching YouTube make up tutorials. There’s something facinating and weirdly relaxing about watching other people put on makeup – although most routines are far too high maintenance for me. I was intrigued by the primer concept, especially since so many YouTubers swore by their face primers and claimed that they made their foundation last longer, their make up stay in place even on hot and sweaty days, and generally made their skin look smoother. Since I’m closer to 30 and no longer have the skin of someone in their early 20’s, I decided I would give this a try with the very cheapest one I could find, ELF face primer at Target. 
It’s an extra step to my morning routine, but it actually does live up to the hype! Next, I want to try one with “illuminating” properties and see what that does.

3. Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg

When this book first came out, I dismissed it after reading some of the criticism leveled at it. I reconsidered after I watched Sheryl Sandberg’s interview at the Global Leadership summit this year. I was kind of blown away by how vulnerable, strong, smart, and successful she was, and so I bought her book. Every chapter I find myself nodding along, thinking, “Me too!”

Also – I might have a bit of reading to do this fall – my stack keeps growing.

4. The Marie Kondo folding method

I realize how random and nerdy this is – but yes, I’m a big fan of a particular way of folding clothes. Marie Kondo is the New York Times best-selling author of “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and she has a specific method of folding that when done correctly, the piece of clothing can stand up. 
I don’t know about the whole “communicating your love and gratitude” through your palms thing, but I do know that my drawers look SO much better, and it’s so much easier to see what I have and find what I want after folding my tees, tank tops, and workout clothes using this method, instead of rolling or stacking them. And seeing Marie’s joy in folding and tidying is just infectious.


5. This mom’s massive home de-cluttering videos

I wanted some inspiration for my post on 155 things to de-clutter from your life, and I found this mom vlogger, Joanna of The Nesting Story, and her first installment of her major house de-clutter. Talk about inspiring! If a mom of four kids (including twins!) can do it, we’ve got no excuses.



To my joy, she posted a part 2 video where she tackles her closet too, and I’m waiting expectantly for the next installments!


In other news, over this Labor Day weekend, I think I’m finally going to take the plunge and try to move this little blog of mine to WordPress (Whaaaaaaat!). Only about 5 years after everyone else – I know. I’m not 100% sure it’s going to work, but if anything funky goes on – that’s why. Wish me luck!

So, that’s what I’ve been loving lately. What about you? Any fun finds to share that have made your life better? Labor Day plans?  Let me know in the comments below.

P.S. If you’re looking for a challenge this long weekend, it’s a great time to tackle the de-cluttering checklist I posted!

This post contains affiliate links, which give me a commission. Thanks for your support!

Friday Finds: 7 Pieces to Incorporate Modern Southwestern Decor

This is a little different from my usual Friday Finds lists. As is probably obvious, I’ve never been too big on the whole Southwestern decor look, despite living in the Southwest.

But last month, as I looked for birthday party themes for Edison, I found so many lovely cactus/boho/southwestern decor items with a little feminine flair, and I just loved the contrast. I wasn’t on the cactus trend before, but now, I’m definitely stuck on it … too much?

I’m looking for creative ways to incorporate touches of it into our house, and put together this little inspiration board.

Pink Cactus Inspiration

1. Watercolor cactus tapestry. This looks like something they’d have at Urban Outfitters, but at a fraction of the cost.
2. Boho macrame wall hanging.
3. Watercolor cactus pillows: top, middle, and bottom. I bought this last one already, and love it! It matches my other burlap and linen pillows and ads a great pop of color.
4. Pink Mexican blanket. These come in all colors!
5. Cactus light. I love this little guy, and he’s definitely going to stick around even though Edison’s birthday is long past.
6. Catctus candles. How cute are these?!
7. Vintage boho rug. I just need the right space for this – but I love the aqua and pink combo.

What do you think of the cactus trend? Love it, or steer clear? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

This post contains some affiliate links, which will earn me a small commission on your purchase. Thanks for your support!

4 #FridayFinds: And A Poll for a Rug!

1. My “Harper” Better Life Bag

All through the last two years, I’ve struggled with my diaper bag. Don’t get me wrong – it was navy with anchors and was very cute. But, am I supposed to carry the diaper bag AND my already large purse, which I also love? I tried many times to fit the diaper essentials into my purse, and it was just a little too small. So I usually moved my essentials from my purse to the diaper bag, and just carried that. But sometimes/many times I’d forget an essential, like … my wallet. Plus, I didn’t love the look of carrying a bag everywhere that was clearly a diaper bag. 
So for Mother’s Day, my gift was a Better Life Bag. These bags are fair trade, and making these bags gives women in Detroit a second chance at life, and an opportunity to support themselves and their families. 
You can purchase from the ready-to-ship selections, but I chose to design my own! I got to pick the fabric, leather color, hardware color, pocket fabric, lining, and pockets. I’m SO pleased with how it turned out! Plus, I ordered the “Harper” bag, so it’s actually a backpack. I can fit an astonishing amount of stuff inside, and it’s so much more comfortable to carry on my back than my shoulder!
I actually like it so much, it’s become my work bag too. I can fit my Surface and notebooks inside for work, and then once I’m home, I can switch them out for the diaper essentials, and I’m ready for our weekend adventures! 
I recently took it as my carry on bag on a work trip. I could fit my Surface, magazines, books, and all my clothes and toiletries inside for my overnight trip.
I can’t recommend this bag enough – and they’re not paying me to say that. It’s an incredible value, and for a great cause! 

2. Holy Yoga YouTube Videos


I’m starting to figure out that I actually need to invest in taking care of myself, otherwise, I’m not going to be able to take care of others. I’m not about to join Brian with the whole triathalon thing – so I’ve decided yoga is more my thing. I took a yoga class at the YMCA years ago and loved it. There’s a yoga studio downtown, but I’ve been looking for a “Holy Yoga” class. If you haven’t heard of Holy yoga – it’s yoga, but with Christian music and meditating on scripture. I thought it would be fun to try, but I haven’t found a class yet, so I started following along with some Youtube videos. I’ve really enjoyed these ones, especially the morning routines.

3. Breathe Devotional. 

This devotional book follows yoga so well! It’s by Life Lived Beautifully, and it’s about praying the Psalms. 

4. Rugs under $100. 

This blog post with boho chic rugs under $100 has made my life better. I’ve been looking for a vintagey-boho rug for the office for forever, and most rugs in that style are freaking expensive. But this blog post has so many good options!  From these options, I’ve found others in the depths of Amazon and Target. Now I just have to decide which one I like best. These are my three favorites, all for different reasons. Which would you vote for? 
Let me know in the comments below!

Five #FridayFinds: For the Home

1. My Letterboard

If you’re on Instagram, you know letterboards like this run from $50 for a small square to $80 or more. I found this one on Amazon for $36! I’m loving coming up with fun phrases for it! 

2. My Bullet Journal

I’m hooked, you guys! After years of never finding that elusive perfect planner with the right amount of writing space, goal tracking, and calenders to keep everything organized, I finally peeked into the bullet journal trend. Then I fell down the rabbit hole and created a whole YouTube playlist of videos on this! Now instead of having three different notebooks, one for work, one for gratitude journaling, one for goal setting and tracking in my PowerSheets, I may be able to combine it all in one place!
As much as I loved many elements of the PowerSheets system, I found myself not using a lot of the pages and forgetting to log my progress on goals, because it just wasn’t portable. With the bullet journal, I can copy down the quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily goal trackers, while keeping everything small enough to tote around. 
I also found this notebook on Amazon, and while it wasn’t cheap, it was so me, it was worth it!

3. Hygge

Trend alert – if you haven’t heard of “hygge” yet (not pronounced like “higgy,” but more like “hue-guy” or “hoo gah”… it’s Danish, and really hard to say!) you will soon. It’s a Danish word, and means something like what’s described above, but in home decor, relates to making spaces feel cozy and inviting. Apparently the Danes burn candles year around, like on average having 13 candles going on any given day, or some crazy high number like that. Of course – I have a bad track record of leaving them burning … so battery operated ones are probably the best way for me to go. I’ve also been drinking lots of hot tea, and taking time to read magazines for fun with a soft, fuzzy blanket after Edison goes to bed at night.

And maybe eating an occasional Cadburry Creme Egg. Totally hygge.

4. Paper bags

Yes, I know it sounds weird, and for a long time I was very confused by this trend. This one is popular in Europe, and just beginning to make it’s way over. Why are people decorating with paper bags? And why are they cool? And most importantly, why would I pay $20 for one? 
If I had to guess, I’d say these are the new fabric cubes and bins. Maybe the reason they’re becoming popular is that you can reuse what you already have. I’m still not sure why someone would buy one, but with some paint, I’m planning to DIY some Trader Joe’s bags and use them for storage in my closets. They do have a cool texture, and you can customize them easily. They’re kind of growing on me.

5. Fair Trade Easter Bundle

Looking for something better than crappy candle to stuff an Easter basket? Mercy House has these fair trade Easter bundles that come with a handmade dishtowel, cross bangle, and crocheted chick for $35. This would make a great gift!
What have you found lately that you can’t stop recommending? Let me know in the comments!

5 Friday Finds: Easy Decor Updates, What I’m Reading and Listening To

1. New pillow covers. 

Adding a new pillow cover is one of my favorite easy ways of changing the look of a room. I treated myself to two new covers, both from Amazon, of all places: the Aztec patterned pillow ($3.59) on the blue chair, and the buffalo checked pillow ($6.98)on the couch. I like the way the black and white balances the pink, gold, and navy pillows, and mixes in the farmhouse and modern look. 

2. New bedroom lamps.

Here’s how my mind works – I want to upgrade the lamps in one room, so I end up changing all the lamps in all the bedrooms. Here’s how this happened: after years using the guest room as a place to put all the mismatched stuff that I didn’t want to get rid of, I decided to at least upgrade the lamps.

See the “before:”

To do that, I bought a lampshade that was actually the right size for the big brass lamp that belonged to Brian’s great-grandmother, and I spray painted the tiny lamp and took it to work, along with the one that matched it from Brian’s side of the bed (here’s the blog post on that, with photos of how they turned out).

Then I moved my light blue lamp, a freebie from someone who was moving, to the guest room, where it actually is the perfect color of blue. Here’s the “after:”

That left our master bedroom lamp-less – so after months of searching, I decided on these lamps from Target. I love the white and gold, and of course, the marble. And I like that now our lamps are both matching – for the first time in our married lives. New marriage level: unlocked!



3. Books I’m reading.

On my nightstand right now: This is Where You Belong: The Art and Science of Loving Where You Live. I heard of this book on the Happy Hour podcast, and it sounded fascinating. After almost 7 years of living in Arizona, it feels like we’re still scratching the surface of what’s here. I’m about halfway through, and I started a long list of ideas for “loving my town” experiments.
Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely by Lysa TerKeurst. This is the kind of book you have to read slowly, to really take it all in. It’s very convicting, challenging, and encouraging. 
A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens. This is our current book club pick, and it’s been such a long time since I’d read it, I’d forgotten just how GOOD it is! I’ve cried at least twice, and laughed a few times, and I’m maybe slightly over halfway through, and thoroughly enjoying it.

4. Whole 30.

If you’re not familiar with the Whole 30 Challenge, it’s a challenge to only eat fruit, vegetables, and meat basically for 30 days. Read all about it on their website. This is the second one we’ve done, and sometimes the Whole 30 feels like one of those things that isn’t fun at the time, but then when you back on it, you say, “That was great, let’s do it again!” Kind of like camping. Or a rollercoaster. 
But there are some things about the Whole 30 I’m loving this time around – mainly made possible by Trader Joe’s. Sweet Potato ribbons, butter nut squash noodles, pre-cooked chicken and pork, tons of dried fruit, vegetables, and nutrition bars – it makes getting dinner on the table after getting home from work a hundred times easier. And it all tastes good.
I’m also loving cooking, to an extent. And that is, as long as it’s easy and Edison isn’t clinging to my legs, crying. That’s when it’s definitely NOT fun!


5. “Thy Will” song by Hillary Scott.



If you haven’t heard this song on the radio yet, you might want to grab a tissue. The music and the lyrics are truly beautiful. I’ve listened to it often enough that the song will get stuck in my head, and then it will be a reminder to me throughout my day at work when I start to worry, or try to control situations – not my will, but His. I’ve been clinging to this reminder the last couple weeks, as more restructuring at work was announced, leaving me with lots of unknowns. I hope it speaks to you too!

Those are some things I’m loving – now it’s your turn! Tell me what you’re into at the moment in the comments below.

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means that if I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link. Thanks for your support!

4 Friday Finds

1. My Root Collective Boots. You guys, permit me to gush for a bit. I’ve wanted these boots forever, but like most fair trade goods, the price kept me from pulling the trigger. After Christmas, I finally treated myself to them, and I don’t know what took me so long! They go with everything. Now that I’ve broken them in, they’re super comfortable. They were true to size, and I get compliments on them almost every time I wear them … which is basically every day.

And the best part – as I mentioned already, since they’re fair trade, they directly employ artisans, providing an escape from gangs and a dignified way of providing for families.


Every dollar you spend is a vote for the kind of world you want to live in. These boots are made for change makin’! And good news for you – when I bought my pair, I was given a special link that would allow my friends to get 10% off of their own purchase. Check them out, you won’t regret it!

 2. DIY Minimalist Videos on YouTube. I think this qualifies as an addiction. The last month was fairly stressful at work, and since I didn’t have time to do much creating myself to relieve the stress, I found that watching others create helped, plus it gave me lots of fresh ideas! I’m particularly enjoying the “minimalist” “Tumblr inspired” DIY videos. To show you what I mean, I made a playlist! Yes, there’s 45 videos in the playlist. Inspiration for days!

One of my favorites that I can’t wait to try:

3. Used Book Sales. I mentioned this on Instagram, but a few weeks ago I went to the VNSA Book Sale for the first time. All of the used books were donated and sold for charity – all half a million.

Yes, you read that right – half a million books, two days, in a warehouse in the middle of Phoenix. People started lining up and camping out the day before. My friend who told me about the sale got up at 4:30 am on a Saturday! I went with two friends at about noon, and still had to wait in line about half an hour to get it, but wow – was it worth it. I literally felt giddy – so many books, so little time, so cheap!

In the back of my mind, I wondered if there was any way I could find my favorite books from childhood – the Childcraft series, and the Junior Classics series. Both sets were old when I was reading them as kid, and when I’d looked for them online in the past, the Childcraft sets went for $100. So when I found BOTH, and the Junior Classics were $1 each, and the complete Childcraft set was $15 total – I about started hyperventilating.

Two boxes of books for $41 is about the best day ever!

4. Mom Made Market Finds. But my day actually got even better, because that same day, I went to the Mom Made Market in downtown Phoenix (shout out to AMP for driving!). We made it in the last few minutes of the market, and we made it worth our while. I brought home three prints, two tees, a romper, and a wooden cut out of of the state of Iowa.

Sadly, I can’t remember the name of the shop I bought the cacti print from. The “Low Maintenance” gray tee is from LaLa Threads, the pineapple tee and romper are from A Quiver Full (the company Edison brand reps for!) the wooden Iowa cut out is from The Treasure Hunts, and I can’t wait to make something with it.

Have you found anything lately you can’t stop recommending? Let us know in the comments!

#Friday Finds: Things on My Desk

1. This Illume Balsam & Cedar candle. Brian and I both share a love for candles, especially holiday scented ones. He’s very particular about his peppermint scented candles, and I’m partial to a good fir tree scent. This candle is small but STRONG, to the point that I had to open some windows because the scent was overpowering in our office after several hours. So, don’t light it and leave it burning forever – a little goes a long way.

Probably my favorite thing about it is how pretty it is! So fancy. It would make a great hostess Christmas gift.

2. Book Club. I’m looking at the book we just started reading now, and looking forward to curling up with it later today. I started a book club at work with four other girls, meeting over lunch on Thursdays. We finished our first book, “Where’d You Go Bernadette,” and all of us greatly enjoyed it. Now I understand what “dramedy” means. It’s funny, sweet, and poignant, and the mystery really sucks you in. We’ve just started “All The Light We Cannot See,” and even though we’re not too far into it, it’s so beautifully written, I feel like I can already recommend it.

3. I know I talk about Chatbooks all the time, BUT did you see that now you can make a special Christmas Chatbook with Rifle Paper Co. Christmas illustrations? Get your first book free by clicking here.

4. I talked about this little sign in my last Friday Finds, but here’s a shop on Etsy that sells hand painted signs along a similar line. I love the dark wood backgrounds on some of these, as well as the Esther verse sign. 

5. Tailwind. I figured I’d include this, since it’s on my computer, which is on my desk. If you’re a blogger, listen up. You know how much you don’t like to pin a bunch of images all in one shot, but it’s so much work to try to schedule them? Tailwind is a tool that allows you to save images from anywhere and add them to a queue to be automatically pinned to Pinterest. That way, you’re not annoying your followers by flooding their feeds, plus, it’s a lot less work for you – it’s super easy to add pins to your queue at any time.
Those are my #FridayFinds! Happy Friday!
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#FridayFinds: Storytime

Photo books, notebooks, Happily Ever After, and knights and dragons – this week’s finds have a theme!



1. Chat Books and Prints: I’ve listed these in my Friday Finds before, but did you see the hilarious commercial they came out with recently? I think all mom’s can appreciate it! #ScrapbookingMutiny.

In addition to the books, which really do take 30 seconds to set up and arrive like mini Christmas presents each month, I also get five prints with each book for an extra $2. I never remember to print photos, so this works perfectly for me. When I get the notification that a book is going to go to print soon, I go into the app and select which photos I’d like to get as prints also. Super easy!

Want to try it out? You can get your first chat book FREE using my code: QN4VP2V6

2. Rifle Paper Co. Notebooks: I could no sooner chose a favorite Rifle Paper Co. notebook than I could a favorite star in the heavens, so I’m really excited about this three pack of mini notebooks! These are destined to be prayer journals, but in the meantime, they also make great desk decor.

3. Happily Ever After Sign: I picked this up in Flagstaff, and my favorite store with a terrible name: P.J. ChilCottage. (Love you guys, your customer service is great and your store is full of all things beautiful, but someone really should re-think that). They had several great options, but this one is perfect for our office book shelf next to some family photos. 

 

4. Storytime Socks: Aren’t these too cute?! I bought Edison the pair of knight and dragon socks also at P.J’s in Flagstaff, but you can buy them on Amazon! The ones I bought cost $12, but they are $8 on Amazon, although some of the other designs are far more expensive.
Those are my finds for this week! Do you have any new discoveries to share?This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for your support!

#FridayFinds: Skillshare, Kid’s Cardigans, and Freshly

An Online Skillshare Class by Brit + Co

1. Skillshare Classes: There’s thousands of classes to choose from, for everything from art classes to email marketing to WordPress, and there’s hundreds of free classes too! The next class I’m going to take is “DSLR Photography for Bloggers” by Brit + Co.

2. Kid 2 Kid: As far as I can tell, this is local to the Phoenix valley, but I’m sure this model exists elsewhere too. Kid 2 Kid is a consignment store for kids clothes, toys, and baby equipment. It’s and affordable and ethical way of getting some awesome clothes. Some of my favorite clothes and shoes for Edison have come from here, including his navy blue moccasins. I’ve snagged Baby Gap sweaters for $5! Here’s my latest haul, in preparation for a trip up north:

Boots: $6.99
Winter coat from Zara: $14.99
Baby Gap jacket: $5.99
Blue and green striped sweater: $4.99
Alpine sweater: $3.50
H&M gray cardigan: $4.99
White softsole shoes: $9.99
Converse: $4.50

I think I’m also going to try selling some of Edison’s old or unworn stuff here, so I can get store credit!

3. Love, Lincoln: Another mama-made shop, they sell everyday clothes for babies, kids, and women. If you’re not lucky enough to find a cute cardigan at your local consignement store, check out the cardigans they sell, in 48 colors!

4. Freshly: First of all, Blue Apron didn’t work out for us. We were paying $60 for three meals a week, and there were no leftovers. But the biggest reason it wasn’t working for us was the time it took to make the meals – each one took at least an hour, minimum, even though the time estimate was 30-40 minutes. The food was also kind of unusual. So, the main goal of saving time wasn’t happening. After I cancelled, Brian sent me a link for Freshly. Not only does the food arrive in a box at your door, but it’s already cooked. It just has to be warmed up in two minutes! It costs less for more meals. It sounds a little too good to be true. Anyone else have any experience with it? Let me know!

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