The Best Shopping Apps

Friday, November 28, 2014

"Pop" print by Lilly Pulitzer

Today is Black Friday. Those words often evoke a sense of excitement or anxiety...or a combination of both. Either way, Black Friday involves amazing deals in shops across the country. Whatever you're looking for, it's probably on sale today and the rest of this weekend.

Speaking of this weekend, I've loved the inclusion of Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. This has given other businesses - especially locally-run ones - the chance to join in the fun.

Let's talk online shopping for a second. It's super-convenient these days to open your laptop and blaze through your Christmas shopping list with a click of a mouse - and the sales are often more abundant online as well. But let's say you're not on a laptop. Instead, you're braving the Black Friday crowds, standing in line with a cart full of goodies. There's something from another store you could be ordering while you wait.

That's where apps come in.

These apps I'm about to show you can be used beyond Black Friday/Cyber Monday, but I figured these would come in handy this weekend. ;) So, without further ado, here are my favorite shopping apps for iOS! (You may be able to find these apps on Google Play or Android Market.)

This is often the first place I go when I'm ordering things. Retail Me Not has so many coupons for so many stores, and I've often been able to get free shipping on many purchases. Just browse to see what coupons are available!


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I love Amazon so much as it is for their great deals on books, but they sell many other items, so it makes one-stop shopping so, so easy. It's even easier to shop on my phone; I ordered my Halloween costume this year through this app. :)

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I haven't bought anything on this app, but I installed my Sephora VIB rewards card into my Passbook. It's super nice to pull your phone out when you're shopping there, and the card on Passbook keeps track of your Beauty Insider reward points. Since I installed the app, I've gotten quite a few notifications of sales, which is also nice.

Casetify (formerly Casetagram)

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I've talked about Casetify before, but I love this store and the wide variety of cases they have. You can buy a case from any of the artist collections OR make your own, all with just a few swipes on the app. You can find coupons and sales - some are exclusive to the app - and you can even track your order once you place it. Yay! (Also, their social media department is super, super nice!)

BONUS: Deliveries

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This is lifesaver for package tracking. All you have to do is plug in a tracking number and carrier, and the app will track the shipment and give you a countdown of when it arrives, with notifications for every stop on the way. This is super handy for this time of year and beyond. :)

Have you ever shopped via an app? If so, how do you like it?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Pattern by Rifle Paper Co.

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all! :) Today, I'm celebrating the holiday with my family by eating amazing food and watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. More adventures will probably ensue throughout the day as well.

I hope that you and your families all have a wonderful Thanksgiving too, stay safe if you're traveling today, and God bless!

Have Faith

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

You can find blessings in unexpected places.

Let me explain.

Yesterday, my grandfather and I were grabbing some food from Chikfila. While grabbing said food, I noticed that in the back, Luke 17:6 was written on the back of a whiteboard. I love Chikfila for the values they uphold so - naturally, this piqued my interest.

It was the moment that I picked up a cup of lemonade that I noticed the same verse written on the side of the cup. Huh.

I really think that verse was there for us - in that moment - for a reason.

In my personal experience, God has always found a way to find and help me out in ways that I never thought I'd need. Something simple as scribbling a verse on a lemonade cup actually made such an impact that I'm sure the waitress helping us didn't see right away. It's moments like these that help my faith and make it even stronger.

So, what I'm trying to say is that if you find a verse you love, share it. If you even have some insight that you discovered while living daily life, share it. You never know who - and how many - you'll help and support by doing so.

A Golf-Carting Adventure in Peachtree City

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

This Thanksgiving week, I've been visiting family in Georgia. It's been great to catch up with and see friends and family down here. :) Plus, Thanksgiving is in just a few days! Yay!

The other day, my cousin took me on a golf cart ride through the entirety of Peachtree City. Then, yesterday, I took it for a spin myself.

It's basically one giant circle of pine trees, with various shops and a huge park and golf course in between. Residents can literally drive to school, work, or even Walgreens', just so long as they stay on designated paths or very, very specific subdivision roads. It's amazing, and I wish they had golf cart accessibility in Franklin.

We had a great time on the cart. :) My cousin gave me a tour of the town in a way I hadn't seen before. Through each and every winding path that our cart traveled, we got to see both the town and the nature that surrounds it. The great Fall weather didn't hurt, either.

When I drove yesterday, I was amazed at how easy it was. If you can drive a car, driving a golf cart is cake. I told my grandfather (who rode with me that day) that it was dangerous that I was able to access a Target so easily. ;) Ha!

For now, here are some of the the snaps I took while riding with my cousin...and they are gorgeous. :)

My favorite thing that we saw by far was this "Leave a Book, Take a Book" mini library in one of the yards in the subdivision. My cousin told me that she enjoyed seeing what books were in there. These neighbors were thoughtful and sweet to give so many people access to books if they want to read, and I absolutely love that.

Red-Eye Flight Tips

Monday, November 24, 2014

I've said it before, but this week is a huge week of travel for many folks, especially leading right up to Thanksgiving (or any other holiday coming up). What if your schedule won't allow you to pop into town until the day before (or morning of) a holiday, meeting, or any special event? This where the red-eye flight comes in.

The earliest I've ever left my home for a flight was probably around 3 or 4:00 AM. I'm pretty sure I've hopped on planes at 6 AM, but I guarantee that there are flights that will arrive at your destination by then. Since they depart during the night and arrive in the morning, red-eye flights give you the entire day at your destination once you arrive, but flights that early require special preparation.

So, here are my tips if you just so happen to be traveling by a red-eye (or extremely early-morning) flight. :) (Some of these can even apply to international flights, as they depart in the evening and arrive in the morning...just not quite as early.)

  • Err on the side of comfort. Actually, camp out on the side of comfort. Even if you've got a day planned, chances are, you'll be able to take a quick nap or at least change clothes for any event you have when you land. I'd do something like what I wrote in my "What to Wear On Planes" post, but I'd swap out jeans for sweatpants or leggings. Any layers I'd have would be a lot warmer, too, socks included.
  • If you can sleep on the plane, sleep on the plane. Otherwise, get a lot of sleep beforehand. I personally can't sleep on planes, so I rely on great sleep the night before and a great cup of coffee (or two...or three ;] )
  • Bring chapstick (and any other moisturizers you want). Airplane air is notorious for drying out skin, so items like these are lifesavers. Also, on that note...
  • Drink water at some point during your flight. Staying hydrated is always important for any flight; not to mention it will help you feel better while you sit still on a plane that early in the morning.
  • If you do decide to stay awake, here's what I recommend for such an early flight:
    • Preloading an episode or two of your favorite TV show on your iPad/tablet/phone.
    • Really, really great music.
    • Coffee. Or tea.
    • A really, really great novel.
    • Or, if all else fails, bring a pair of headphones. Noise canceling or not, these will help you relax on a flight this early.
If you're taking a red-eye flight this Holiday season, I hope this helps you out! :) I know I'll be referring back to this when I hop a red-eye flight one of these days.


Friday, November 21, 2014

If y'all have been reading my blog for awhile (or know me in real life), you'll know that I'm kind of obsessed with Disney movies. I adore the Disney Princess movies, not just for their gorgeous animation (especially in the older ones), but also for how genuinely good the storytelling is and how good the characters are.

So, when I found out about the new Cinderella movie coming out, I was excited. Then the trailer came out...and I'm actually still excited.

It's interesting when a trailer pretty much goes through the entire story right up until nearly the very end, but I guess Cinderella is such a classic story that most people are going to know what comes next. However, this movie looks gorgeous

One thing I'm curious about, though: is this a musical? I'm cool with it either way, but it'll be interesting if it is, especially following "Into the Woods" coming out this Christmas (which I'm also extremely excited for :] ).

What do you think of the new Cinderella movie? Do you like the trailer? Are you planning on seeing it when it comes out?

What to Pack for Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 20, 2014

It's officially one week before Thanksgiving! :)

It's also around this time that folks are starting to travel for the Holiday season, whether that's across a state, the country, or the globe. Because of this, lots of us will be packing for the road or plane trips ahead.

So, here's my recommendations for your Thanksgiving packing list! :)

(Note: This list is designed for a cooler-weather Thanksgiving. Please tailor this to your destination if you're going somewhere warmer or even colder. When in doubt, check the weather before you pack.)

What to Pack for Thanksgiving

  • Plaid/Flannel Shirts - These are SO comfy and work well with your favorite pair of jeans. They're also great for a casual Thanksgiving day of chilling and eating.
  • Dresses - I like to pack at least a couple of dresses for Thanksgiving for two reasons: church and Thanksgiving day (if I'm feeling dressy).
  • A Multitude of Sweaters - From chunky to embellished, sweaters are just a great idea for this season in general. Pair these with your favorite scarves and coats for extra warmth.
  • Jeans, Leggings, and Tights - These items in basic, neutral colors will carry you through the entire Thanksgiving week. Want to add color? I recommend darker colors like burgundy and hunter green.
  • Comfy walking shoes & flats - Again, these in neutral colors are great, versatile options for your entire week.
  • Beauty Essentials - As far as beauty goes, I recommend a great lip balm or Chapstick and an eyeshadow palette with neutral colors to wear throughout your week, day or night. Then, just add products from your normal beauty & skincare routine, and you're set. :)

A Road Trip Playlist II

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I'm going on a road trip today for Thanksgiving. :) I'm very, very excited to see family I haven't seen in awhile, and I just love this season in general, from great food to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Since I'm going to be traveling today, I thought it'd be fitting to give y'all a road trip playlist inspired by the late Fall season with songs I've been loving a whole lot lately.

Pattern by Rifle Paper Co.

Want to listen to this playlist? Check it out on Spotify! :)

What music do you like to listen to on road trips?

How to Make a Getting-Ready Playlist

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Pattern by Rifle Paper Co.

I listen to music a lot, but I probably most often listen to it when I get ready in the mornings. Whether I have ten or thirty minutes, or even an hour before I run out the door, I try to squeeze in some kind of upbeat music or play some songs from one of the playlists on Spotify or my phone.

Speaking of playlists, they can actually be great tools to help you get ready in the morning. I have a super-easy tutorial for y'all that should help you make the best playlist for your mornings, no matter what your musical taste may be. :)

  1. Start with how much time you normally have to get ready. For me, this varies between thirty minutes to an hour, but you can do more or less.
  2. Start putting together your favorite songs, keeping that time limit in mind.  iTunes and Spotify both have meters for how long your playlist is, so reference that every so often while you gather music.
  3. Have fun with it! Make playlists with specific genres of music, and make playlists for specific occasions, like getting ready for a night out. Hey, you can just title the playlist with an emoji if you want. The possibilities are endless!
What do you listen to when you get ready in the mornings? Do you listen to different things for different occasions?

The Blue and the Grey

Monday, November 17, 2014

My hometown has historical significance: Franklin, Tennessee is where the Battle of Franklin took place during the Civil War.

This past weekend was the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Franklin, and my friends and family and I all got to go watch one of the reenactments of the battle itself as part of Franklin's Blue and Grey Days.

Because we had to be at the Eastern Flank battlefield two hours before the reenactment started, we had the opportunity to visit a wide variety of food trucks. I love food trucks, especially when one of them happens to be one of my all-time favorite places for breakfast (and Southern cooking...and coffee), Puckett's!

After we waited for and bought our food, we took our seats around the perimeter of the field for the reenactment. My angle was pretty limited, but what I saw of it was really, really cool.

This photo courtesy of Wesley (the redhead at the left!)

Once the reenactment was over, we took pictures everywhere, especially at the Suttler's Camp, where the reenactors were actually camping and staying the weekend. It was very cool and very informative to browse their general stores and listen to a brief lecture on medical practices of the era.

Overall, this weekend was so much fun, what with all the adventures we had, including this one. :)

Cold Weather Essentials

Friday, November 14, 2014

I don't know about y'all, but Tennessee has decided to plunge into winter(-ish) weather already. We're not getting snow - we usually don't see that until January - but there's enough brisk wind outside to make us want to bundle up in sweaters, scarves, boots, gloves, hats, and so on and so forth.

However, cold weather means I'm busier, but in the best way. I get to see a lot of friends and family this season, and I've already gotten to do a lot of fun things.

Since I've got some fun stuff coming up this weekend that involve frolicking in cold weather, I thought I'd share my essentials for when it's cold outside.

Cold Weather Essentials

Thick Knit Sweaters - These are my go-to clothing item this season, and I usually pair them with riding boots. The great part about sweaters is that they come in so many different styles, colors, and designs. You can go for neutrals or really fun graphic patterns; it's totally up to you. :)

Beanies - I live in beanies during cold weather months. I prefer mine slouchy, but so long as they cover your ears (and head, of course), you're good to go, especially if it's windy.

Scarves - Need I say more? They come in so many colors and weights, and there are so many ways to tie them. The possibilities are quite literally endless.

Gloves - An accessory I often forget, gloves or mittens are important if I'm outside for long periods of time. They make gloves now that let you text without taking them off, and there are also fingerless gloves, too.

Not pictured, but still important: all the hot drinks - I can't resist bringing a cup of hot chocolate with me to cold events, or stopping at Starbucks when it's cold and rainy outside with my friends as we're walking around downtown.

I hope this helped you out if you're braving this cold weather! :) Stay warm out there!