Monday, September 30, 2013

Small Steps

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If you've followed my blog for a while, you might have noticed how I randomly add bits and pieces to the blog. I'm not skilled in graphic design, nor an owner of photoshop, however, I've learned to use PicMonkey and PhotoBucket. All in all, I feel like things are slowly coming together!

See the tab buttons on the right? I added those a couple weeks ago. You might want to check out the newest tab though, my blogroll, featuring my daily reads and other favorites. Another update is my new button, finally checked it off my blog's to-do list. It can be found below my social media buttons. Feel free to share it, or if you're interested in doing a button swap, please let me know!

For now, I'm taking small steps with my blog design. After coming across this lovely quote, I felt inspired to keep my design simple and classic. The options with design are endless and sometimes overwhelming, but sticking with the basics can be just as pretty. And luckily the basics of HTML aren't too difficult. When in doubt, I always have Google. The only trick is finding a tutorial I can understand...but I digress. In the end, I learn something new and that's the fun of it all, isn't it?

Happy Monday, y'all!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Sea of Blooming Dreams

I don't know about you, but September has flown by! It's hard to believe the holidays are just around the corner. But before we head into October, it's time to present my favorite blogger of the month: Erica from Sea of Blooming Dreams. I stumbled upon Erica's blog right before the Texas Style Council conference. We both happened to share the same Instagram picture and then someone liked someone's pic, and before I knew it I was skimming through her blog posts. Sea of Blooming Dreams has a lovely variety of everything from fun and feminine style posts, creative DIYs, delicious recipes and more! I was lucky enough to meet Erica the first night of TxSC and had so much fun hanging out with her the rest of the weekend. By the end of it all, I had made a new best friend!

TxSC Prom Party
Ever since the conference, I've been following her blog for fun hair tutorials and outfit inspiration. A couple of my favorite posts from this month can be found here and here. Make sure and check out Sea of Blooming Dreams, you'll be glad you stopped by!

Sea of Blooming Dreams
When and why did you decide to start blogging?

I started blogging about 2 1/2 years ago. I got to this point in my life where I had stopped caring about my appearance. I was at a job where I didn't see anyone all day, so I wouldn't get dressed up at all. After a good year or so of just rolling out of bed and getting dressed, I started reading blogs. The blogs that I looked at pretty much inspired me to want to get out of my rut and start dressing the way I wanted to. I started my blog to keep myself accountable and now I love getting all dressed up!

Describe your personal style.

I can't say that I have an exact personal style. I'm definitely a skirts and heels kind of girl. I just want to have fun with whatever I'm wearing. Sometimes I'll go out in my galaxy leggings and spiked heels, and then the next day, wear a tutu skirt or something sparkly.

What are some of your favorite transition pieces for summer to fall?

My favorite transition piece to go from summer to fall are tights. I usually buy a bunch of different types like sheer, fishnet, or colored tights to pair with summer skirts and shorts. Polka dot tights are my absolute favorite.

Where do you find inspiration for new blog posts?

I find most of my inspiration from magazines. It's more of me seeing something in a photo that I want to try for a hairstyle or DIY post. As far as my fashion posts go, I just wear what I want. I can't really say that I look for inspiration specifically for outfits.

How would you describe your blog in just 5 words?

1. Fashionable
2. Inspiring
3. Creative
4. Fun
5. Outdoorsy

What's your favorite part about blogging?

My favorite part about blogging is being able to connect with other creative and amazing people. Other bloggers are always inspiring to meet.

What's your least favorite part about blogging?

My least favorite thing about blogging is probably the amount of time it really takes. Don't get me wrong, I love blogging, but sometimes it can be hard to balance life with blogging.

What's one piece of advice for new or aspiring bloggers?

The best piece of advice I can give is to make a schedule. Just have a planner or notebook...anything you can write in to plan ahead for blog posts. I think this is the best way to stay on track and organized. Oh and if you take your laptop from place to place like I do, make sure you have your charger. I can't tell you how many times I was on a blogging roll to realize my laptop was about to die and didn't have the charger with me.

Thanks for reading Erica's interview! Hope you enjoy visiting her blog and find some inspiration. 
Have a lovely weekend!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Words of Wisdom Wednesday #5

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View from Portugal
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Do you know the feeling when your mind tunes out everything and it's just you and a book? It's peaceful, an escape, and best of all, relaxing. You can easily lose yourself in a character's situation or an author's theory on x, y and z. After spending hours in front of a screen all day, it's nice to curl up with a favorite book and relax with a cup of hot tea or glass of wine.

Over the summer, I shared a list of some books I wanted to read(update coming soon) and mentioned how excited I was to start reading for leisure again. In the past, I've stuck with mostly fiction books, but this summer I started reading some nonfiction. Turns out I can still laugh and cry just the same while reading a nonfiction book, who knew? Whether fiction or nonfiction, a book is a book and I believe you're bound to learn something new. This week's words of wisdom include some encouragement for the book you want to read but haven't quite started, and some inspiration for all you lovely bookworms!

Read any good books lately? Are you into fiction or nonfiction? Happy reading everyone!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Step into Fall

Tall Riding Boots
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Mid-Calf Boots
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Ankle Booties
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After all the rain this past weekend, the temperatures finally decided to drop. I couldn't believe it was 65 degrees this morning! I'm not going to lie, I actually had to turn on the warm air during the car ride to work. Silly me thought I could still get away with sandals, but my feet were pretty cold. I should probably invest in some new flats, especially since I wore out every pair I had during college; but I can't stop looking at boots everywhere I go. With a multitude of styles, I decided to make a collage for tall/riding boots, mid-calf boots, and ankle boots. I can't have them all, but the good news is they're all less than $100! Yes, even the tall boots. Go ahead and check out these fall beauties, you're bound to find a special pair!

Which boots are you wearing this fall? Check out my favorites by clicking the bolded numbers! 
Have a wonderful Tuesday!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Wanderlust

Beautiful view from the Cathedral in Cadiz, EspaƱa!
It's been a while since I traveled. Far too long in my opinion. Somewhere new at least. Around this time last year, I would have flown back to Philadelphia for college and taken a trip to the Jersey Shore for Labor Day weekend. Now I hated the packing, finding rides to the airport, and ridiculously long flight delays, but finally getting to my destination was the best part. Also an accomplishment when you count my fair share of not so fun airport adventures.

Whether it's by plane, train or car, I love traveling. The idea of traveling somewhere new is exciting. Every place has its own culture, local restaurants and shops, and unique festivals or events. Even if you're traveling to a place you've been several times before, there is always more to explore!

Over the past few years I've been fortunate enough to travel parts of Europe, the East and West coast, and other parts of the the US. I've loved every second of visiting these places and have been yearning for a new adventure recently. I'm ready to pack my bags and travel! Don't care if it's for a day, the weekend or a week, as long as it's somewhere new. Now don't get me wrong, I will always love Austin, but it's nice to get away for a while, wouldn't you agree?
Shades of Blue in Chefchaouen, Morocco
Have you traveled to any fun places lately? Planning a trip somewhere new? Are you feeling some wanderlust too? Happy Monday everyone!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fall TV Favorites

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Up until now, I've always thought I watch too much television. While preparing for this post, I tried to come up with a list of season premieres I'm looking forward to, yet the final count was two.  Now I follow a number of shows, more than I care to admit, but this season isn't looking to busy in the TV department. I'm thinking it's time to find a new TV series, no? Probably The Mindy Project, because as I once mentioned Mindy Kaling is amazinand we'd become instant besties. For now, I will spend the weekend watching reruns of HIMYM and Revenge to prepare for this week's season premieres!

http://tvbreakroom.com/tag/how-i-met-your-mother/
My first post was titled after one of Barney's catchphrases, "Challenge Accepted". Silly I know, but three months later and I'm still writing, and you're reading! I've been obsessed with this show for the past couple years and it's about time we met the mother. I tend to get emotionally attached to the characters from my favorite show, so it's going to be bittersweet watching the final season. After 8 seasons, the dreamer in me says "I just want Ted to marry the mother and live happily ever after", but it wouldn't be complete without a series of obstacles and adventures. If you haven't seen it, you should probably head on over to Netflix and start now!

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Another fall favorite is Revenge! When I try and describe this show to friends, I explain it as Pretty Little Liars meets Gossip Girl. If you haven't seen either series or it just sounds confusing, I'll try to give a short summary. It's all about a smart and strong beauty named Emily Thorne, whose father was framed, sent to jail and killed all before a young age. Now she's all grown up and moves back home to the Hamptons with a new identity, extreme fight training and a plan to take down the family who ruined her life. Emily's character is such a bad a## and while I don't usually curse, it's the plain truth. Aside from all the secrets and revenge plots, there's plenty of romance as well. The end of last season revealed a bunch of new secrets, so you can bet I'll be analyzing all the reruns this weekend! As mentioned before, if you haven't seen it, make sure to visit Netflix or your online TV source to catch up on the best shows ever!

I could go on and on about my favorite TV shows, but then this post would take forever to read. I hope you check out both or one of these series premieres, because they're going to be legend, wait for it, dary(I think I may have just won an award for blogger's corniest line right there). 

What are some of your favorite fall TV shows? Any HIMYM or Revenge fans out there? Which premieres are you most excited for? Happy Friday y'all and enjoy the weekend!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Words of Wisdom Wednesday #4

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Dancing is a favorite hobby of mine. However, as much as I love to shake and move it, I'm not the best dancer. Teach me some moves and an eight count and watch me go! Leave me in the middle of a circle on the dance floor and I'm stiff as a board. I get shy and nervous and yeah...awkward, but I digress.

As a young girl, I did the typical jazz, tap and ballet. But in the end, turns out young Melissa got bored and that was that. In a way I'm grateful. Have you seen Dance Moms? At this point, I don't know if I'm more worried about the daughters or those crazy moms. Anyways...fast forward to college and I started taking salsa lessons. My best friend and I bought one of those Groupon deals for a few classes at a local dance studio and it was the best choice we ever made! Not only did I learn some awesome moves, I also found a new love for salsa music. Luckily the dance is based off a couple simple steps, meaning I have no reason to be confused, though for some reason it still happens. While I'm not completely confident in my dancing skills, I feel like a star while salsa dancing. And when I have a dance parter who knows what they're doing, I pretend I'm Vanessa Williams from Dance with Me, even more so.

Like cooking, jogging or shopping, dancing is a fun kind of therapy. If you're stressed or feeling a bit restless, you need a hobby to put your energy into. When I'm overwhelmed or having a busy week and can't make it to salsa class, I just turn up the music at home and dance like a crazy person by myself, aka a judgement free zone. Whether it's dancing at home or salsa dancing in class, I love it all. This week's words of wisdom show you don't have to be perfect to be a great dancer. As long as you're having fun and giving it all you've got, that's what matters.

Are you a dancer? What's your favorite type of dance? Hope you enjoyed today's quotes on Dance and Happy Wednesday everyone!