Friday, November 28, 2014

Saving for an Emergency & Capital One 360's Black Friday Sale

During our first year of marriage, I distinctly remember my husband suggesting we start an account for unexpected expenses - an emergency fund - just in case something like a job loss or illness was in our future.  To be honest, I was skeptical.  Why did we need to put money away?  Surely we wouldn't find ourselves in any major financial trouble, right?


While neither of us have lost our jobs, we did have a death in our family that forced us to take some time away from work. It was very unexpected and our finances were the last thing on our mind, so at that moment I found myself very thankful for our emergency fund and the security it provided during our time of need.

And this holiday season, Capital One 360 wants to help you reach your goals of financial peace, whether that's starting an emergency fund, saving for college, or simply avoiding the "financial hangover" that usually arrives shortly after the holidays. With five helpful deals, Capital One 360's Black Friday Sale is designed to encourage consumers to keep their finances at the top of their mind, even while many have gifts, greetings and get-togethers on the brain.

In addition, Capital One 360 provides the following all year long:
  • Remote deposit capture with Capital One 360's CheckMate tool;
  • The Automatic Savings Plan, which makes saving a snap;
  • And checking and savings accounts that are fee-free and earn interest.

So once all of your Thanksgiving celebrations are over, be sure to head over to Capital One 360 for Black Friday deals you can bank on, including new account bonuses, referral bonuses and closing cost credits.  Start building your financial peace of mind today because some day in the future it will all be worth it.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Thursday, November 27, 2014


It would be easy to find reasons not to be thankful, especially after losing our baby girl, but today I'm choosing to be thankful for the time he has given Sam, Charlotte, Calvin, & I, with each other and our family & friends.

Life isn't always simple, but thanking God for the little things is. 
Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Dear Calvin // Seven Months

Dear Calvin,

Oh buddy, this has been the month of teething. Yes, MONTH!  And sadly, we don't have a whole lot to show for all the pain & tears.  However, you still manage to fill our days with smiles like the one above and all the teething trouble seem to fade away.

Along with teething, we've still been introducing solid foods here & there, but you aren't showing a whole lot of interest.  We can now add sweet potato, avocado, & banana to the list of foods you have tried, but after one or two bites, you just want to play with it.  We'll keep trying, but honestly don't feel any big rush quite yet.

Up until this month, you have just been rolling around, but you've now learned how to scoot around on your tummy & pivot in a circle.  We've caught you on all fours, rocking back & forth, a couple of times, but no crawling... yet!

I'm really looking forward to the upcoming holidays and can't wait to see it all through your sweet eyes --- your first Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Years!


[two months]
[three months]
[four months]
[five months]

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Stitch Fix #11

Are you convinced I'm a Stitch Fix fan yet?

If you haven't signed up yet, do so HERE and follow these easy steps:

1. Fill out your style profile
2. Schedule your fix
3. Once your fix arrives, try on the items and decide what you're going to keep
4. Send everything you don't want back to Stitch Fix in their pre-paid bag

For this fix, I was stumped on which item(s) I should keep.  I wasn't initially drawn to anything in my box, but the more I tried them on, the more I liked them.  So I turned to my Instagram + Facebook friends and asked what they thought.

[clockwise from top left] 
Kut From The Kloth Larson Collared Knit Top
Evolution by Cyrus Abbot Crew Neck Elbow Patch Sweater
Desires Nero Hooded Long-Sleeve Sweater
Market and Spruce Corinna Striped Dolman Top
Liverpool Rizzo Pull-On Skinny Ponte Pant (pictured 1, 2, & 4)

Hands down, the Abbot Crew Neck Elbow Patch Sweater & Market and Spruce Corinna Striped Dolman Top were the favorites.  This ended up helping a lot because while I liked both, I felt like the striped dolman top was a much better addition to my closet and appreciated the feedback I received on it.

I've scheduled one last fix for the year and I've requested some cold weather items to help get me through the next few months.  And according to their calendar, there is still time to schedule your next fix. Whether you have a holiday party to attend or you're looking for something to keep you warm, sign up today and receive five items delivered right to your door! 

Have questions about Stitch Fix?  Let me know!  Don't forget: you can also purchase a Stitch Fix gift card for the fashion-ista on your gift list.

Friday, November 7, 2014

My Daily Routine with Essential Oils

Essential oils are everywhere these days*.

Before this summer, I didn't know much about them.  I kept seeing them pop up all over social media, but it wasn't until I was struggling with some issues with Calvin that I was introduced to them.  And now? I find myself reaching for them every day.

Lately, if I'm lucky, my day starts with a shower.  And thanks to döTERRA's shampoo & conditioner combo, my post-partum hair hasn't felt better.  They help protect colored hair & smell amazing!  In addition, I'm also using the HD Clear face wash daily.

Throughout the day, I find myself reaching for one of my citrus oils to help aid in my water intake.  Not only do they improve the taste of my water, but they help boost my mood.  I've also found that lemon is also a good one for cleaning!

And at the end of the day, oils are now a staple in Calvin's bedtime routine --- a little lavender/fractionated coconut oil mixture on his feet & sheets + a drop of DigestZen (a döTERRA digestive blend) on his tummy = a happy baby (& mama).  I'm also trying a few oils to help with the his newest stage - teething...

When I realized how easy & naturally oils can replace a lot of the medicines in your home, I took the plunge and became a döTERRA wellness advocate.  In short, that means I can purchase essential oils & products at wholesale prices, but people can also purchase oils through my site. Honestly, I've never been a natural salesman, but I do enjoy sharing a product and/or company that can change someone's life and that's what I believe essential oils are --- life changing.


Disclosure: I was not compensated for my thoughts, but I will receive commission for purchases made through the links on this post.

*I understand people have opinions on different essential oil companies, but I'm not writing this to start any debate. We have seen results with döTERRA essential oils, which is why I'm sharing my experience with them.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

October Recap

Besides Calvin's monthly posts, sharing my goals, and posting about Stitch Fix, this space has been pretty quiet. I plan to write more about some of my thoughts, but I think the silence stems from figuring out this my new role in motherhood. But now with six almost seven months under my belt, I think I might be back, even just to share about life (like I used to).

So let's start with an October recap:  

A couple weeks after Calvin turned five months, we introduced "solids" in the form of rice cereal. At first, I thought he loved it, but it turns out Calvin is much more interested in the spoon than the food.  Since then we've continued to try rice cereal, as well as sweet potatoes & a little avocado, but he continues to remain uninterested.

Fall in the PNW is one of my favorites, so we got out as much as we could. The rain has arrived, so we'll probably have less of these outings, but we had fun while the weather lasted.

Teething = no fun! It seemed that once Calvin turned six months, the teething pain came full force. We've tried frozen teethers, essential oils, and ibuprofen in desperate times, but usually a warm bath ends up doing the trick - at least until he has to get out and the tears return again.

Any teething advice from other mamas out there?

And last - our sweet pumpkin on his first Halloween! This mama can't wait to view the upcoming holidays through these sweet eyes.

Monday, November 3, 2014

November Goals

For someone that lives on lists, these posts are some of my favorite to write each month.  But, to be honest, they aren't always the easiest.  While I enjoy setting goals for the month, I find it really humbling when I have to share whether I accomplished them or not.  Anyone else find this to be true?

October Recap:

1. Continuing the spending freeze & sticking to our budget (third month's the charm?). We did much better on this one this month. We did have a couple unexpected expenses, but were able to sell a few things throughout the month to balance out the extra spending.
2. Set boundaries for Internet use, specifically when I'm home with Calvin. Still working on this one...

3. Sit down with Sam & set some SMART goals for Sam Grable Photography. FAIL. We talked about doing this, but didn't actually sit down & set any.  This will be on next month's for sure.

4. Go on a date with Sam (without Calvin, if possible). Thanks to some baby-loving grandparents, we achieved this goal.  I'd love to have at least one childless date with Sam each month if we can make that happen...

5. Start working on our house to get it ready to sell/rent. This one is started.  We had a couple appointments with real estate agents & rental companies and are working on getting the house ready.

November Goals:

1. Set SMART goals for Sam Grable Photography with Sam.

2. Continue to work on Internet/phone boundaries.

3. Budget, budget, budget!
4. Get back into blogging (for me).
Linking up with The Tiny Twig // Goals with Grace