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GIVEAWAY | Cricut® Explore One Machine + $100 Gift Card

Wednesday, July 29

It's Christmas in July you guys!!
I just got word that Cricut is giving away a NEW Cricut Explore One machine!
If you've been eyeing this amazing cutting tool I highly encourage you to enter the giveaway they have going on this week!!

Not only do you win a Cricut Explore One but you'll also receive a $100 gift card to Jo-Ann's and an awesome prize pack filled with all sorts of Cricut tools and goodies!!

Click on the "Summer Love" tab on the Official Cricut Facebook page !!
You have until Friday at noon MST to enter.

There are SO many fun things you can create using a Cricut Explore One! The lower price point makes it even more accessible to all of the DIYer's out there!!

I hope you'll ENTER TO WIN - I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!!
I know the people at Cricut® LOVE seeing the projects you've created using their awesome cutting machine so when you post on social media be sure to tag @officialcricut and use the hashtag #CricutSummer to get their attention!!

All of these projects you see here were created using images from the Summer Love Cricut® cartridge which you can have free access to when you sign up for a Cricut® Subscription.

And did you know there's a Cricut® Design Space™ App now too for using with with the Cricut Explore Air - another version of the Cricut Explore with built-in Bluetooth® for wireless cutting.

I hope you're excited and will take the time to ENTER!
If this isn't for you but you have a friend or two that would be head-over-heels to sure to share this with them.

I didn't even tell you about all of the new cutting materials Cricut® has released -  distressed craft foam too, Washi Sheets, and lots of fun bright vinyl colors - like this lime green color you see in all of the projects in this post!!

SHARE | Blog Fête :: The One-Day Conference + Event

Tuesday, July 28

If you live in Central Florida or any nearby surrounding areas, you are definitely going to be interested in what I'm sharing with you today!!

And for those of you who don't fall into that category...I apologize in advance for any feelings of jealousy this post may conjure up!

There's a FUN, Orlando-based annual event that's coming up on Saturday, September 19th!!
It's a one-day conference filled to the hilt with inspiration for creatives, bloggers, shop owners, event planners, entrepreneurs and the creative at heart.

The day will start off with delicious coffee + macarons and will then be followed by 10 expert-lead round table discussions, an inspiring keynote speaker + presentation by Brandi Schaffran-Webb, wedding photographer of Alexis June Weddingsa catered lunch, craft hour, complimentary headshots, a fabulous dinner party to end the day and a fantastic swag bag filled with things to inspire!!

This intimate blogging conference held at East End Market is something designed to light your fire, educate and provide you with the opportunity to connect with others!! There are only 25 tickets available each year making it super exclusive and personal compared to a typical conference with 400+ attendees. As a mom, I LOVE that it's a one-day event so that I can have a day to myself without the hassle of planning, (or guilt), that comes from leaving my family for 3-4 days.

I'm really excited about the PROFESSIONAL COMPLIMENTARY HEADSHOTS each attendee will receive - that alone is worth the entire ticket price. 

I'm also super pumped about the CRAFT HOUR with Sarah Khandjian where we will be making motivational banners together!!

photo source: Urban Outfitters

There's going to be a swag bag filled with things to inspire...
like these beautiful gold-foiled Motto Journals from one of the event sponsors, my absolutely favorite inspirational company on the planet...Compendium!!

Attendees will also be receiving a COMPLIMENTARY MANI tucked in their swag bags from Marilyn Monroe Spas.

Then there's the dinner portion of the event...which is something I've actually been working on behind-the-scenes to help pull together!  It's going to be a wonderful way to end an amazing day!!

Again, if you are local, you should SO come to this!!
I know there are a few tickets left to snag and you can grab one for $50 off the ticket price by using the promo code: BuildingMyEmpire

Head to the Blog Fête website to find out more about the event sponsors, the team that helps put this all together, more specifics about the event itself and to purchase one of the last remaining Blog Fête tickets.

I could totally use a new headshot...
I better get to working on my fitness and get my hair done - *wink*

LIFE | A Good Night's Rest

Thursday, July 23

We have had a crappy mattress for about 8 years now.
Over the last 2 or 3 it's become almost physically unbearable...
I've had ongoing back issues and J and I often feel as though we've been run over by a truck when we roll out of bed every morning. I'm not even kidding.

After years and years of dealing with it...
months and months of putting it off...
and just not wanting to spend the money...
We finally took the plunge...and as I see it...invested in our future!

We bought a new Tempurpedic mattress and have had it for about 2 weeks now.
As neat as it is to not be able to feel the bed move or shake when the other person gets in or out because of the memory foam, I'm still not convinced it was worth the money as I'm still not sleeping like a baby - which is completely what I was expecting. 

We were told to give it 30 I'm giving it two more weeks to rock my world...
otherwise I'll be calling Tempurpedic to discuss our options. *wink*

On top of having a new mattress to adjust to, which is absolutely a wonderful "struggle" to be having, we also jumped from a Queen size to a King - which I'm not sure was the best decision.  
J is not a snuggler which means there's even more distance between us now. *frown*

Of course, now we need all new sheets + bedding because of the jump up in mattress size...
which, again, is an absolutely wonderful "problem" to be faced with.

Which brings me full circle to the reason behind my post today!!
I've been obsessesed with the Georgina Bedding from Anthropologie!!

Seriously though!
Isn't it absolutely gorgeous??

Well...over the course of the last 3 weeks of staring at it on the Anthropologie website and searching hashtags on Instagram of other people who have the bedding to help me make the agonizing decision over whether to go with the white or the cream option, (thank you Eleni McMullin from @conveythemoment on Instagram), lo and behold, a 25% off sale popped up!!  That's all I needed to  convince my budget-minded guy that NOW was definitely the time to make my bedding dreams come true!! 

We still have a headboard to find but I have convinced myself this bedding is going to change my life because it just might be the motivation I need to actually paint the master bedroom that has had paint swatches on the walls for well over a year now.

I'm feeling incredibly fortunate to be breaking in a new mattress and to know some beautiful bedding is on it's way.  This truly could the beginning of something wonderful...a good night's rest, first and foremost.

Anyone else have some bedding that you've been obsessing over...
or duvet covers you've actually splurged on that you love? Please share!!

My bedroom is seriously a disaster.
It's the catch-all space for things we aren't sure what to do with and it's just NOT the sanctuary I would love my bedroom to be. That's all about to change about 5-7 business days upon delivery from Anthropologie. *wink*

BOOK CLUB | August Selection :: Today, Tomorrow, & Every Day

Wednesday, July 15

I'm sooo excited about the book selection I've picked for August!
It's a brand-new book from Live-Inspired entitled "Today, Tomorrow & Every Day" and it centers on living a brave + real + gorgeous life!

The book itself is beautiful with gilded edges, laser-cut end sheets and a foil-stamped cover.

It's written by my favorite inspirational author - M.H. Clark and the pages hold words of wisdom + thoughtful insight about how "Her life is her is her art. She makes it, day by day, hour by hour, into something she is proud to call her own. You recognize her, and you recognize her life because it is your life, too." (words on the back cover)

This is so eloquent...and so true...isn't it?

I hope you'll join me in August as we dive into this simple + uplifting read.
I've got an extra copy to send to someone too!!

All you have to do is read the "She hadn't always been this way..." quote pictured above and leave a comment here on the blog answering the question below:

I haven't always been as...

I'll pick a winner and announce it in the comments on this same page at some point over the weekend! So check back or follow me on Instagram or Facebook to await the announcement!

In the meantime, here's my answer:
I haven't always been as good at letting little things go, being prayerful in my decisions and trusting in God and his plans for me. I still have a lot of work ahead of me...because I'm still learning and arranging and rearranging. *wink*

And if you want to go ahead and order the book for yourself or a friend you can find it RIGHT HERE.

I awoke this morning with a completely different book selection in mind, ready to announce it to the world. And as much as I don't really like to change things up at the last minute, upon further research I realized that particular book was not going to fall in line with the standard guidelines of the PNPF Book Club after all - which should be a super easy inspirational read for busy people without a lot of time to commit to reading. 

I was led to the "Today, Tomorrow & Every Day" book and was inspired to go with that one instead.
Not even 10 minutes after my decision to switch up the book, (and ordering it online), I received a package from UPS; a box of goodies from Live-Inspired. Guess what book was in that box? Yep! What an awesome confirmation that this book truly is the one meant for us to read for the month of August!

On a more serious note, if you missed the news about my friend, Heidi Swapp, unexpectedly losing her 16 year old son last week, please see this post or this post or this post on Instagram.  There are ways you can reach out to her and her family to offer some comfort and love, should you feel moved to do so. 

FREE | i Sugar Coat Everything Art Print :: The Cake Blog

Thursday, July 2

It's up...
and it's live...
and it's ready for printing...

It's a sugary sweet play-on-words for all of the bakers out there!! I think the watercolor cupcake added just the right touch too!!

Not only is it available as a free printable, you can grab the files to turn it into digital wallpaper too!

Head on over to The Cake Blog to download the FREE files!!
I hope you are enjoying the free monthly goodies as much as I enjoy creating them!!

As always, while you are over there, be sure to check out all of the amazing cakes!
My favorites this time include this beautiful naked Strawberry Thyme Cake, this delicious looking  4th of July-festive Stars + Stripes cake and these adorable Roasted Blueberry Breakfast Parfaits!

Love you all to pieces!!

I hope to get back to sugarcoating everything ASAP!
Our oven is out of service after our house was struck by lightning a week or so ago.
The gas burners work on top but my oven is shot.
I've had some feedback from Instagram friends about suggestions for a new dual range
and I have to say these Big Chill appliances have caught my eye!!
Shhh...don't tell J yet though. I haven't even looked at pricing...I've only gotten lost in their
retro appreal!!
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