You guys know by now that traveling has become a HUGE part of Jon Luke and I's lives. We absolutely love it. To experience new places. Learn about new cultures. And to just see the world. It has been so much fun to be able to get up and go when we can, and I definitely do not take these moments for granted. To be honest, if you ask either one of us to pack a bag, we would be ready in five minutes. (Okay, maybe ten.)
Oh hey there Summer! I cannot believe we are halfway through the Summer season. While it feels like it just began, I also am so tired of the heat and humidity…bring on the cooler temps! Until then though, I finally got around to launching the Summer Issue of the The Graceful Guide! (I know, I am little late, but better late than never, right?) Anyways, I am so happy to finally share this new issue with you guys because it is full of things that I currently have my heart (and pocketbook) wrapped up in…house stuff!
Want to know a random fact about me? Well, I LOVE TO CLEAN. I am not necessarily the “cleanest” person all the time, but when I get in to my cleaning mode…it is on! Lately, I have been on such a house kick and have been all about cleaning up and cleaning out. We’ve spent the past two weeks getting down and dirty when it comes to our space (you will see why very soon!), which is why I have been obsessing over my new Hoover vacuum from Sears!
It is that time of the year…another Graceful Guide is LIVE! I have loved putting these guides together for you all and LOVE being able to let the creative juices flow. If you missed the Winter 2019 guide, you can see if here, but for the Spring 2019 issue of The Graceful Guide, I had a lot of fun rounding up Spring trends, some spring break swimwear and gift ideas for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.
As I said before, the Pantene Pro-V Intense Rescue Shots are easy to use and SUPER convenient. Safe for color, and heat-treated hair, I feel confident with each use that my hair will come out feeling smoother than ever. These single-dose tubes contain a blend of Pro-Vitamin B5, strengthening lipids and natural glycerin that targets those damaged hair areas, giving my hair the strength to take on the day-to-day heat/styling it endures. With each use, the strengthening lipids absorb into your hair (rather than just coating it) which targets those damaged hair pieces. After each use, my hair feels like I have just walked out of the salon which is amazing!
How many times have you been in the shower, ready to shave your legs, only to find that your razor blade needs changing? If you are like me, you probably do not have a new one on hand, and end up having to wait until the next grocery run to re-fill. Well, not anymore. Today, I want to tell you about the new subscription service from Gillette Venus Razor. With their new Venus Direct service, you can choose a custom handle and razor heads that fit YOUR needs then have them delivered to YOUR DOOR. If this isn’t the best thing since sliced bread…I’m not sure what is.
I cannot believe that in a mere month and a half, Jon Luke and I will have been married for FIVE years. How crazy is that? I can still remember when he texted me for the first time. I was in Atlanta prepping for a tennis match against Georgia Tech when the text came through. We had just finished a late night practice and I went to check my phone…there it was. From then, it happened quickly I guess. We started “talking” as they say, hanging out, and eventually in late march became official. It was not long after that I left for a summer abroad in Italy and realized while I was gone that I had fallen in love. We dated for almost three years, and then got married on March 1, 2014 and let me tell y’all, it has been an exciting (almost) five years.
It is a new year, which means…NEW FRAMES! If you have been around for a while, then you know that my eyes are not great. I started wearing glasses when I was about twelve years old and remember it being one of the most traumatizing days of my life. Thankfully though, I have learned to embrace my poor eyesight and now know how to style fun & unique frames! Picking out new frames has become one of my favorite ways to accessorize each day. Often times, a cute pair of specs is just what my outfit needs to get that perfectly curated look, so I have enjoyed trying different frame styles over the years.
From metal, to plastic, to neutral colors and vibrant shades, trying on different frames is exciting for me. I tend to lean towards a minimal, neutral styles which is why I was so happy to discover the High Street collection at Eyemart Express (Vision 4 Less)!
It is ready! The second issue of “The Graceful Guide”! As I said when we first launched this beauty, I am going to release a new guide each quarter. So January, April, July, October, then December for the holidays! I have come to love this sweet project so much and was so happy to hear that you all loved the first issue. It makes me smile when you all love it as much as I do!
I won't lie, Valentine's Day has not always been my favorite. I am not sure if it was the Hallmark feel, or the fact that for many years my Valentine was my mom (truth), but I was never really into it. Then…Jon Luke came into the picture and definitely made things more fun. What I love about him is that he is great at making holidays and anniversaries exciting. We like to think outside of the chocolate box and do things that we would both enjoy and have fun with on Valentine’s Day. So for those who are spending this holiday with a loved one, or with their girls, here are some date night ideas, outfit inspiration and possible gifts for you on this Valentine’s day!
I have seen so many people lately talking about their word of the year. The word that they want to focus on in 2019. The word that may change them, break them down, or lift them up. Truthfully, I have never done this. Picked just one word I mean. I guess I have often times felt that there was no way one word could truly define my year. How could I place all of my heart on just one word? How could I select just one word to live by, think about, or pray over? Well, after 2018, I think I understand.
It is that time of the year: Christmas is in full swing! I don’t know about you but my Christmas shopping is complete (some even wrapped) and my Christmas list is ready. (Santa, I think I have been pretty good.) haha But seriously, I am that person that will think of random things I want throughout the year and add them to my a note in my phone. Things that I would never buy myself because I don’t really need them, or they are too pricey, or I just need ideas…you know the drill. This is the time when I can say, “yep, this is what I want.” And EVERY year for the past few years (probably five to be specific), I have had one thing on there that means more than the jewelry or clothes: my photo books from Artifact Uprising.
It is finally here! The first ever issue of The Graceful Guide! Y’all, this has been a dream of mine for a while. Over a year ago after I wrote The Graceful Guide to Alaska, I started dreaming about this project. I can remember completing that guide and thinking, “man this would be a cool idea for a fancy newsletter…” And so it began. I have dreamt up ideas of how it would work, how often I would create new issues, what they would include…you name it, I thought about it. But it was there that this idea came to a halt: in my thoughts. While I had these big dreams and big plans, I also had a voice in the back of my head telling me it was a dumb idea. That no one cared. No one would read it. I was not good at graphic design. I am not “big enough” for that yet. So per the usual…I let the voices win.
There is nothing I love more than when I am able to take time for myself. Whether I am able to clean my house, clean out my closet, take a nap, read a book…there are so many things I can do when I have time for ME. But I will say, my ultimate “me time” is when I can light all my candles, take a bath and pamper myself for a bit. I love trying different face masks, helping my skin recover from a long week. I was recently given the opportunity to try the new Olay Clay Stick Masks and y’all…they did not disappoint!
I have had to learn a lot about GRACE lately. Really, giving it to myself and not being so hard on everything I do. It has always been a struggle for me because I am an EXTREME perfectionist. I will say…this is one of my biggest flaws. Anyways, this nearly impossible standard I set for myself has been my biggest enemy because it controls so many areas of my life. I want to be the perfect wife, the perfect daughter, the perfect co-worker, the perfect friend. I say “yes” to WAY more than I can handle, and when I say “no” I feel absolutely defeated inside. The struggle is real y’all.
I have to say, I have a love-hate relationship with Halloween. Truth be told, I’ve always been a little “afraid” of the idea of it. I do not like haunted houses, or scary movies, or any of that non-sense. I am a scaredy-cat…I’ll admit it. BUT, what I do love about Halloween is dressing up. I LOVE when for just one night I can be something or someone else (for fun of course) and wander around asking for candy of all things. I have some of the best memories growing up from when my dad would take me trick-or-treating. My costume selection was all over the map also. I was Tinker Bell, the Pink Power Ranger, a black cat, and Darth Vader. All. Over. The. Map. But without a doubt every year, I had a blast.
If you follow me on social media then you know that I recently returned from a wonderful trip to Greece. If you have been following for a while, then you also know that the hubs and I actually went to Greece for the first time two years ago, and that this recent trip was our second go-round. Well, with that being said, I figured it was about time to give you all a little Graceful Guide for all things Greece...or at least how I know it.
If you all are like me then you are SO EXCITED for football to start back! Yep, true life. I am excited for football. I grew up watching football with both of my parents and have always loved sports. When I was deciding where I wanted to go to college, I can't lie, I chose to go to an SEC school because I knew the football would be fun. I just love it. Fall evenings, grilling out and watching the game...it makes for a great Saturday night in my household.
Whether you are in school, or running a business, staying organized is something that will help you function no matter what. So, how do you choose to stay organized? Do you like to write things down? Or are you someone who memorizes things well? For me, I am definitely a visual learner which means I am extremely visual when it comes to remembering things. This leads me to my planner. I was always so excited for the first day of school because that meant new school supplies...a.k.a, a new planner. This is how I function y'all. I need my space to write things down and remember! I go as far as to color code things (yes, I am that person), to help me classify on levels of importance. My tricks are insane but I have some how managed these last few years, so I am going to share some of my biggest tips with you!
I can remember the days of waking up at 7:50 am for my 8 am class. Yep, there were definitely times when I was that kid. I tried my best not to be because I like to feel like I am organized, but you know...sometimes a girl just wants to sleep. But, while there were a few times I slept in, I would say for the most part, I liked to get up, get ready, grab a coffee and slowly make my way to class. It was these days that became my favorite because they started off on the right foot. You know what I mean? So continuing the spirit of back to school this week, I thought I would round up some easy and casual looks that you can throw on for class. Whether you are a late sleeper, or an early riser, all of these looks can be quick and easy...and comfortable for class!