Friday, June 29, 2012

Five Friday Freebies

Two weeks ago I posted about my Five Friday Favorites. I love sharing things with others when I find something great, so I wanted to share some freebies (yes with an "s" unlike the image above) with you today.

1. Since we are just a couple days away from July I wanted to share this free printable calendar with you.

This first freebie is from Jesse of Good Girl Gone Glad. Love her! I plan to put my printed calendar in a little square silver frame on my desk, I just need to get some more color ink for my printer first. How pretty would this look on your desk. You can find her post {here} to download your very own and share with a friend. :) She also has an Etsy shop with some super cute prints. 

2. Next up is some nail polish and pedicure cream from Julep which I found via Kelly at Fabulous K. When you click over to the website you'll be asked some questions about your personal style and they'll send you 2 free nail polishes as well as a pedicure cream for joining their Maven program. If you love beauty products, especially summer's fun nail colors, this is for you. Please note that while the first box of goodies is free you are becoming a 'Maven' which means there is a monthly fee for ongoing shipments. They offer the ability to get free months so you're rewarded for sharing with friends. I do not get credit for recommending them as I don't have an account with them.

3. If you love great type fonts to use for craft projects, business cards, to update your blog, etc. Melanie of Nicole's Classes shares 10 great free Script Typefaces. There is a link to each one where you can download it and although some have commented that the fonts require a fee, you can simply use zero in the payment box and you'll be able to download for free, unless you are feeling generous and want to donate.

4. Do you want your kitchen cupboards to look like this? If you enjoy an organized space, you'll appreciate these gorgeous labels which would add elegance to any kitchen. Jen from I Heart Organizing featured one of her readers' kitchens and also provided a free download to get these awesome goodies! Click {here} to download them. The creator of these labels is Jen of The Social Home and is where you can find her original post titled 'Pantry Pretty: Dollar Store Pantry Makeover'. It's swoon-worthy!

5. Last but not least, I have not one but TWO Starbucks freebies for you!! They expire very soon so if you want to take advantage, you'll have to jump on it this weekend. According to both the Starbucks Facebook page and the Target Facebook page, if you buy one Frappuccino at any Target location that has a Starbucks shop inside, you'll get the second Frappuccino for free. Now you can treat your hubby, BFF or your kiddo (they have non-caffeinated options such as strawberries & cream as well as vanilla bean and a couple others). It's pretty toasty here in FL, supposed to reach 95 tomorrow so you can bet I'll be snagging a couple of these! :) You have until July.2, 2012 to take advantage of this deal.

If you miss out on that offer, Starbucks is giving away a free tall cup of fresh brewed coffee to anyone who pops into one of their stores on July.4, 2012. Consider it their Fourth of July gift to you! You can read more about the details of this freebie {here}

If you don't have a Target store with a Starbucks inside, if you go to any regular Starbucks store and buy two frappuccinos you'll still get a deal. From now until July.1st you'll save $1 for each frappuccino you buy as long as you are grabbing 2 or more. You can see the details on Starbucks' website.

*Please not that I'm not compensated for sharing these companies or deals with you in any way.

What is your favorite freebie listed here? If you have any awesome links to freebies, I'd love to know about them, please leave them in the comments section or e-mail me. :)

Have a lovely weekend everyone!


*header image credit  All other images belong to the mentioned websites and blogs.

Shabby Apple Dress Winner!

Good Morning Ladies! I'm so looking forward to the weekend, but before it officially begins I'm sharing the winner of the Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway which will hopefully make the lucky lady's day. :)

Thank you to all who participated in this giveaway, we had 93 entries!! Because of your tweets, Twitter & Facebook follows I have got to interact with several of you already and it's been a lot of fun-thanks for being so awesome!

To keep things fair, I like to use to draw all winning entry numbers and this time it selected:

 No.72-Congratulations to Tara of Dandy Giveaways! 

Tara, I have the e-mail address you provided in your entry so I'll be in contact with you later today to get your size and shipping info for my friends at Shabby Apple so they can get that gorgeous dress to your door!

For those of you who did not win this one, I have more exciting giveaways planned for you this summer!! Once again, a big thank you to my giveaway sponsor, Shabby Apple for being so generous!

I hope you all have a fabulous Friday!


Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Definition of Good Manners

We talk about manners here a lot on this blog and while many of us know what good manners are in terms of behavior and the basics such as saying please and thank you or holding the door open for others, I think this quote above by Emily Post sums up what good manners consist of. Being well mannered stems from one's ability to be aware, kind and considerate of another's feelings before speaking or acting. In essence, a classy woman's good manners put others at ease, making them feel drawn to her and comfortable in her presence. Isn't that how we all want to feel and make others feel also?

Today's post is super short, you all know I can write encyclopedia-length posts at times so I'm trying to deliver more bite-sized messages for you. I hope you're having a great week so far! I'll be announcing the winner tomorrow for the Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway, if you haven't entered to win yet you have until 11pm tonight! Good Luck! {Here} is a link to the gorgeous red dress up for grabs! :)

 One last thing, I haven't made a formal announcement here yet (only tweeted about it and shared on Facebook) but I wanted to let you all know that I have some ad spaces available and if you buy our regular size ad space now it'll be a very affordable $8 for 30 days-a 60% discount to kick off the summer! :) Rates go back up on July.1st so click {here} if you are interested, just 2 more days left! I'd love to show your page off to my readers- it's a great way to advertise your blog, Etsy shop, website, business, Facebook page, etc., to get new readers & customers!

Thanks for stopping by!


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Let Yourself Dream Again

A gentle reminder today that your adversaries do not have the final say on your success or what happens to you during your lifetime. Often times you'll notice that just as you're finally on the road to achieving your dreams, someone will try to distract or discourage you. Try to remember who the comments are coming from, the negative ones will never come from the mouths of those who are achieving wild success and experiencing joy in their own life.

I hope this inspires someone today. Nothing pains me more than seeing someone muster up the courage to achieve something great in their life and having that dream squashed by someone who hasn't even achieved the kind of success they'd like in their own life. 

Remember that others like to keep those close to them at their level. If you are moving on up, don't be surprised if you feel a struggle to not get dragged down by unmotivated daydreamers who refuse to put feet to their faith and take action. Sometimes it's uncomfortable but we must leave others behind if we truly want to move to bigger and better things. Like rocks in a backpack; discouraging friends, colleagues, strangers and even family members can weigh us down but only if we let them!

Classy women often walk alone. Read this quote from a post I wrote last fall. It's a good reminder that if you feel alone at times on your journey to achieving your dreams or fulfilling your calling, you're on the right track. After all, going out on a limb is where all the best fruit is!

Have you ever had others try to squash your dreams? Were you able to push through and silence your nay-sayers?

P.S. Reminder that the Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway is ending soon! Don't forget to enter, there's a gorgeous red dress up for grabs worth $78! Enter {here}.


Friday, June 22, 2012

Living Well: How to Make Clothing Last

Are you all ready for the weekend? We're in rainy season so I'll be enjoying the great indoors for most of the weekend. Don't feel bad for me though, I get more than my fair share of sunshine here in Florida!

Today I wanted to post about something that we can all benefit from-making our favorite clothes last as long as they possibly can. After all, a classy woman takes pride in how she looks and is a good steward of the resources afforded to her.

A few weeks ago I was wearing a pair of black dress pants that I've received many compliments on over the years because they fit me perfectly. As I got them ready to take in for cleaning, I was thinking about where I was working when I purchased them and realized I bought them ten years ago from Club Monaco while still living in Toronto. They were a bit more than I wanted to spend at the time however I always value an invest in quality key basics. Apparently my investment is paying off. After a whole decade, these lightweight wool pants fit still like a dream and haven't lost their shape thanks to spot treating early and only using dry cleaning to clean them.

I wanted to share some tips with you to make your clothing go the distance. Whether it be an expensive blouse or an inexpensive skirt, these tips will help you get the most mileage from the wardrobe you have.

How to Make Your Clothes Last Longer

1. Keep Darks Their Darkest- One of the biggest problems with black is it can fade, especially if it is cotton. Likewise, dark denim tends to lose its color over time also. The best way to keep dark washable fabrics their darkest is to always wash them in cold water. Washing clothing inside out and if you are washing a black top or dark jeans for the first time, use about 1/4 cup of white vinegar directly in the wash. You can also sprinkle salt in the wash water as well. These both keep the dye from leeching out of your clothing, and especially helps a new item not bleed out to other dark item such as dark pink or red where staining from dye could ruin it. Fabric softeners can leave a residue which is more obvious on dark clothing. Instead use a 1/4 cup of white vinegar in your fabric softener compartment and it will remove all build up of soap and softeners on clothes and leave them smelling fresh and soft. They won't smell like pickles-I promise!

2. Hang Dry- By hanging your best pieces out to dry, you are eliminating the excessive heat and friction they undergo while in the dryer. There are all kinds of dryers on the market now such as steam dryers, but this advice is for all of you like myself who still have a regular style dryer. I try to hang dark items like black clothing inside out to prevent fading if I'm hanging it outdoors. With a gentle breeze, clothing always smells amazing and is usually fairly wrinkle-free. Most times though, I just hang my items on an extended hanger in our laundry room or pull back the shower curtain and let my laundry dry overnight. It works like a charm. This also saves you money too on  your utility bill as dryers use up a lot of energy.

3. Delicate Cycle vs. Regular Wash - While you probably run most of your laundry as a regular type of load, delicates such as lingerie either need to be hand washed or use your delicate cycle which involves less friction. The same holds true for other washables that you want to keep looking their best. Bras should always be washed with all fastening hooks closed in a lingerie bag or if you don't have one, a pillowcase with an elastic tied around it and then let these items air dry. Over time the friction of overloaded machines and vigorous washing cycles can causes holes, snags and pilling.

4. Repair Before You Wash & Wear- If you see a small snag, missing button, hole, etc., in any item of clothing it's always best to repair the item yourself or have it fixed before washing. A very small flaw could turn into a completely ruined article of clothing after even one round in the washer and dryer. Something I like to do is keep a small bin with any clothing that needs to be repaired along with a ziploc bag filled with needles and many shades of thread and mini scissors. This way I can pull out the bin when I'm watching TV. If it's beyond my ability to fix, I take it to someone who can. On all clothing, always close fastening hooks and zippers first before washing as this will keep them from becoming damaged.

5. Whites, Darks & Towels- Never wash towels with any article of clothing. I caught hubby doing it one time (thankfully it was his own clothing) and he wasn't happy with how pilled his shirts looked after. Always wash towels only with towels, sheets and clothing need to be washed separately. Likewise, darks and whites should never party together in the washing machine. This just makes everything look muddy and gray. I remember growing up and some of my class mates would have grayish-looking white shirts and was thankful my mother had taught me well. Many use bleach, we do not in our home for environmental and health reasons, I have however found hydrogen peroxide in the wash to be a good solution for whites. I always wash stains with water and salt if I can immediately which usually takes it all out, if not, I use a little bit of soap or I pre-treat with oxy clean which usually does the job.

We all do laundry regularly and have the basics down, some of these points may not be new to you unless you've just moved out on your own but I hope you learned a new tip or two today. :)

I'd love to hear from you. What other tips do YOU have for making your clothes last as long as they can?

Happy Friday!

P.S. If you haven't entered our Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway yet, you still have time. There is a gorgeous dress up for grabs. Get all the details {here}.

*photo credits: (1) , (2)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Shabby Apple Dress Giveaway!

In celebration of the start of summer, I have a little treat for you from Shabby Apple, which is one of my favorite companies and one of our newest sponsors! Shabby Apple is an online boutique that offer a beautiful array of women's dresses that are designed to fit. They don't stop there though, they also offer skirts, swimwear, accessories, shoes and even maternity wear and children's clothing too! They consistently get high ratings and are featured in all of the most popular fashion magazines on a regular basis.

One of you lucky readers will have a chance to win one of their beautiful dresses! The dress up for grabs is the 'Nothin' Like a Dame' dress in vermillion red which retails at $78. I just love this color and I think it would suit so many skin types. It's the perfect dress for the classy woman, it's sexy and elegant without being revealing and has pretty detailing around the neck to draw attention to your face. :) This is the stunning dress you can win:

Summer is the time of year to have some fun with fashion, add some color to your wardrobe and be a little daring. If you don't normally wear red, it is a stunning color that instantly makes you feel beautiful, glamorous as well as more confident the minute you put it on. It's also a great choice for cruises and can be worn in fall or during the holidays so it's very versatile. Whether you choose to pack it away for an upcoming vacation or wear it out on the town with your man, you are sure to be a showstopper in this gorgeous dress! 

Here's how to enter! First entry is mandatory, all others are optional but will increase your chances of winning! You can enter all 5 ways at once or over the course of the week. It looks like a lot of text below, but it's easy to enter all five ways, I promise!!   Ready. Set. Enter....

***This Giveaway is now Closed***


Mandatory Entry #1: "Like" Shabby Apple on Facebook. Also, pop by the Shabby Apple Website then come back here and share which dress on their website is your favorite, in this same comment tell me that you did both of these things for your first entry. :) If you did both of these things, enter 4 more ways.

Entry #2: "Like" The Classy Woman Facebook page. *Due to new changes that Facebook recently made, make sure there is a check mark beside the Liked button stating "showing in newsfeed" so that you'll see our updates in your newsfeed. Thank You!

Entry #3: Become a public follower of this blog through Google friend Connect OR Follow me on Twitter

Entry #4: Blog about, tweet about or write a Facebook post linking to this post and leave a comment letting me know you did. Here is the shortened text link to use:

Entry #5: Lastly, grab my blue "Classy & Fabulous" blog button from my sidebar and place it in the sidebar of your blog (it must remain there until June.28th when I draw the winner.) I hope you'll keep it up longer though. ;) Leave a comment and let me know that you did this.

*Be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry and don't forget to leave your e-mail if you don't have a blog with it listed, so I can contact you if you win! 

GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Thursday June.28, 2012 @ 11pm EST


PRIZE: One 'Nothin' Like a Dame' Dress in any size from Shabby Apple worth $78 (includes shipping).

RULES: The winner will be selected using and announced on 06/29/12 here as well as via my Twitter and Facebook page.

OPEN TO: U.S. Residents or Anyone who has a U.S. mailing address.

Good Luck to you All! A big thank you to the ever-generous Shabby Apple!


Monday, June 18, 2012

Manners Monday: Holding Doors Open for Others

Happy Monday! Did everyone have a nice Father's Day weekend? As I mentioned here my father and I live on opposite coasts so I sent him a package early last week and we made a point of catching up twice last week via Skype so that was our visit time. :)

As promised, I'm beginning our week with a Manners Monday post. Given several run-ins I've had over the past few weeks, I thought it was about time I did a little post about the importance of holding the door for others. We began the conversation in The Classy Woman Facebook community and I decided to bring this topic to the blog. (If you haven't joined yet, be sure to like my page as I post there daily and join the conversation!)

How you treat others says a lot about you as a person. Everybody appreciates a polite act like having the door held open for them. This act of kindness is not just reserved for men. It is important that everyone know how to hold a door for another, whether they are carrying heavy bags or just passing through empty handed. Once we have mastered it, we must teach it to our children that they might lead the future generation by example.

 5 Tips on How to Properly Hold a Door for Others

1. Who to Hold a Door For- Hold the door for everyone, whenever the occasion arises. Some reserve this polite gesture only for the elderly,  a mother with a stroller/small children or in the case of men they hold they door open for ladies and not gents. Regardless of a person's age or sex it is proper and thoughtful to hold the door for someone else.

2. How Long to Wait for Someone Walking?- Generally speaking, when walking up to a door with someone behind you or coming from the other side of the door, the time spent holding the door is extremely minimal so it is one of the easiest and most thoughtful things we can do for another. Sometimes we'll notice an elderly person several 20 feet away and feel compelled to hold the door for them. Do remember that in your waiting for them, it sometimes makes someone feel as though they now must speed up to get there instead of just keep on at the pace they are comfortable with, use discretion so one doesn't view your efforts as a nuisance more than a blessing.

3. Make Door Opening Less Awkward-Sometimes we are met with someone who holds the door for us by extending their arm to push the door open as we are to squeeze past them. This type of door holding while thoughtful can be awkward. The best way to hold a door for someone upon meeting the door first is to pull it towards you and stand to the side and let the other person/people through then follow them after they have walked through. If you happen upon a door that opens away from you, walk through it and stand to the side out of the way as others walk through then let the door go once everyone has walked through.

4. Do it With a Smile- I think many times people go about things in a mannerly fashion as if it is expected of them (if they were raised that way) but it appears there is no joy in it. I think it is so important to do things with a smile whether thanking a cashier and wishing her a nice day, saying good morning or holding the door for someone. The classy woman is warm and desires to improve another person's day. She does not view manners as tedious tasks that she endures so that she won't be looked upon as rude. Rather, she regards manners as kindness granted to another just because they too are human and deserve to be treated as such.

5. Don't Expect a Thank You- I say this because if you don't expect it, you won't be disappointed if it doesn't happen. While it is nice and often rewarding to hear the words "thank you" when we have taken the time to do something nice for others, our efforts and manners are their own reward. Personally speaking, I have sometimes felt annoyed after having held a door for someone who was struggling with a stroller or heavy packages and didn't receive so much as a nod or a smile. I'm sure you can relate. I've learned that there are always going to be people that disregard polite gestures or don't respond the way you might have hoped or. Don't let it get you down!

For some who practice good manners and are not met with a thank you, it can be enough to think why bother and forget making the polite gestures altogether. But if your true motives for doing the good deed are pure and joy is in your heart to truly assist another then your reasons should outweigh any rude folks you come across. Besides, the world needs more people like you to carry on and lead by positive example in a time when basic manners seem to be at an all time low.

Have a great week ladies! Pssst....I have an awesome this week that I'm really excited about and you do not want to miss! Be sure to check in again soon. :)

*images: (1), (2)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Five Friday Favorites

Hello Lovelies! How is everyone? Are you enjoying the summer so far? It's been hot here in Florida but the rain just keeps coming, we've had rain daily for the past two weeks mixed with sun. Dry weather and sunshine are in the forecast, I can't wait!

This Sunday is Father's Day-What has everyone got planned? With distance always an issue being that I'm on the east coast and my dad is on the west coast, I mailed him a fun little package this year filled with some of my favorite things from Whole Foods that I know he'll also enjoy and a heartfelt card. We were catching up Wednesday afternoon, running some ideas past one another and he told me it arrived that morning. As suspected, his favorite part was the card-aw, he's so sentimental, gotta love that!. There's nothing better than the gift of good health! I'm so grateful that we share that in common, but then again, I learned so much of it from him!

I haven't spent much time blogging this week as you can see. I've taken some time to catch up on my blog reading though, popping by and leaving comments on some of my regular and favorite blogs.

I realized I haven't done a post of my favorites in a while and after coming across several share-worthy posts that I enjoyed so much, I thought I'd spread the love so you can read them also. :)


1. A Little Chevron- A few months ago, I was delighted to have stumbled upon a lovely fashion blog called Pink Peonies. I'm not sure how I ended up there but I'm so glad I did! Rachel, the author, models unique, fun, trendy and classic looks daily on her blog. For anyone looking for fresh, new fashion ideas, ways to perk up your current wardrobe for summer, I highly recommend popping by. She lists all sources too so if you find something you love, you can buy it too! She is just darling, do pop by and visit {here}, a listing of all of her outfits. Enjoy! Pssst.....If you love the look of chevron, take a peek at what I created for my living room last month.

2.  The Dog-Eared Pages- If you haven't met Kate from Centsational Girl, you simply must! She is just so creative and her home is overflowing with beauty. She is always working on a new project and has been featured in several home decor magazines. Her latest blog post speaks to what many of us struggle with: Magazine clutter! I love magazines and I'm forever tearing pages out, bending the corners of others and have several magazine organizers in my office closet but I loved what she did with her favorite bits....she did something with hers that has such a beautiful, polished and professional end result without a lot of expertise, time or resources. Check it out {here}. The image above is of her master bedroom. Don't you just love the stenciled wall? It's one of my favorite things in her home. :)

3. Custom Art/Family Rules Signs- Tara over at Between You & Me creates really awesome artwork for the home-everything from family rules signs to city signs. I fell in love with them last year, when she lived about 15 mins from me and I was determined to buy one but due to a string of little unexpected house fixes, it just wasn't in the budget for us. I popped by last week and saw that she is going to begin creating and selling them again this summer as she did last year too. I love that her and her hubby create these together and she's just the sweetest gal. Since last year she moved away, we're no longer in the same state. I kind of regret not having gotten to meet her in person. I'm hoping to order 2 of her signs this summer. Take a peek and see what I mean...she'll create custom signs with scriptures, your favorite quote, song lyrics or simply choose one of her ready-made designs. Visit a list of her signs {here}.
*Tara didn't ask me to promote her art, I just really love her work. ;)

4. Photoshop-ing Spree- It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of YoungHouseLove, I have been for years. Sherry and John's ability to consistently produce some of the coolest ideas is what hooked me on their blog, What keeps me going back for more, though, is their down-to-earth nature and witty text as well as their ability to completely be themselves even with millions of readers! Their recent post on Photoshop tricks was perfect timing for me because I'm just about to take a free course at my library and buy Photoshop Elements. as I've felt for years that I could be so much more creative and productive. If you're a mom, you will love all of the neat ideas they share for little ones too, featured in this pic is their sweet daughter Clara and the uber-cute dollhouse they made for her recently. I enjoyed their little photoshop tutorial, you can find it {here}

5. Cream & Black Kitchen- As much as I'm inspired by Spring's plethora of bright, cheery colors, I am a lover of classic design at heart complete with neutrals with just a few pops of color to balance a space. This classic kitchen featured on Dust Jacket Attic, although cream and black, has just the right amount of color, texture and style. I am in love with every.square.inch of it! It is so beautiful yet functional and filled with storage options galore! This one is not to be missed, you can get to it by clicking {here}. I always love this blog for it's consistent showing of gorgeous photos.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend and fun time with Family this Father's Day! Don't forget to pop by on Monday for new Manners Monday post! If you want a little weekend inspiration, pop by our Facebook Community where I post to daily, we hit the '700 fans' milestone the other day and are growing quicker than I ever expected, I'd be thrilled id you'd join us!  :) Now, I'd love to know- which one of my favorite blog posts was yours also?


*TGIF image 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Spring Fashion Giveaway Winner

Thank you to everyone that entered the Fashion to Figure Spring Fashion Giveaway! With a little help from, the winner has been selected and it's #16. Congratulations to Amy D. who said she loves the blossom floral tank!!

New items are added weekly, so you might even see something else that catches your eye. I'll be sending your e-mail info to my Fashion to Figure contact today and she'll get in touch with you shortly.

For those that didn't win this one, there are more giveaways on the way! Just this past week I've been contacted by two more great giveaway sponsors that I'm excited to share with you all very soon.

A big thanks to Fashion to Figure for making this giveaway possible!

Happy Monday! :)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Spring Fashion Giveaway!

Recently I was contacted by a women's clothing company, Fashion to Figure, who is now our newest sponsor. :) Fashion to Figure works very hard to provide trendy as well as timeless pieces that will appeal to fashionable women of all sizes. Best of all, they are giving one reader a chance to win a $30 certificate to purchase anything they would like in their online shop. With spring in full swing, and summer right around the corner what better time to add a new piece to your wardrobe!

While Fashion to Figure offers an affordable line of  plus-size women's clothing, they also sell accessories like handbags, clutches, jewelry and other accessories. So, there is something for everyone! I selected my favorite looks from their collection to give you some ideas of what they have to offer.

Now, it's your turn, pop over to the website and come back here to leave a comment on your favorite item or what you would spend your $30 on. There are 4 other ways to enter too!



1. To enter, leave a comment here letting me know what item you would choose if you won.

2. For extra entries you can share this giveaway via your blog, FacebookTwitter or grab my blog button from my sidebar and display it on your blog. {worth 1 entry each}

*Be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry and don't forget to leave your e-mail if you don't have a blog, so I can contact you if you win! 

GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Saturday June.9, 2012 @ 11pm EST


PRIZE: $30 to spend as you choose and includes shipping.

RULES: The winner will be selected using and announced on 06/11/12.

OPEN TO: U.S. residents only for this giveaway.

Good Luck to Everyone! :) Also, a very special thank you to Fashion to Figure for this generous giveaway!


Friday, June 1, 2012

Living Well: Learn to Enjoy the Moment

I think one of the biggest challenges that face women today is balance. With being a woman comes maintaining a home, trying to succeed in the workplace, managing a social life, nurturing friendships, paying bills, running errands, meeting deadlines and above all making time for family. Days turn into weeks and weeks into months and before long a whole year has flown by with only a few celebrations or moments often savored along the way.

The truth is that life was never meant to be a race, it was meant to be enjoyed. Many women are overwhelmed or so tightly wound up from all they're trying to accomplish in a week that it's sometimes hard to relax and enjoy the simple pleasures of life on weekends or during vacation.

In the last few years, spending more time outdoors with nature and taking a step back from demanding corporate sales positions to work for myself has allowed me to delight in the small moments like I never had before. This isn't to say that I don't feel overloaded with work at times or stressed but I had to take the time to define what was most important to me and my family. Beginning a gratitude journal was also key to unlocking a more thankful heart that allowed me to focus daily on five things that I am most grateful for at the end of my day.

Things that had been so important to me at one time in my mind, were no longer necessary. I adopted a less is more approach to life and scaled back in many different areas which has allowed me to spend less money, free up my schedule, bring less stuff into our home and focus on only what we truly need to be happy. I recently came to some other new revelations {here} while on a trip about what we want vs. what we need in life.

I just love this quote, it challenges us all to enjoy what we have whether it be time, an occupation, our family, money, friendships or the latest version of the iPad. Let's be women who know how to be content with what we have, not needing the next trendy pair of shoes or handbag to be happy. Ignore what the media tells you that you must have and need to be in order to be a success. Be satisfied in knowing what is best for you and keeping life as uncomplicated as it can be.

 "Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; 

remember that what you have now was once among the things

 you only hoped for." 

~Epicurus (Greek Philosopher) 

On that note, I hope you all have a wonderful and fulfilling weekend enjoying the simple and most beautiful moments of life. :) I'd love to hear from you! How have you become more present in your  own life?


*image (1)
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