Monday, July 24, 2017

My Erin Condren Life Planner Setup | Summer 2017



I've been using planners for a long, long time. I get it from my mom. :)

I'm no stranger to Erin Condren, either. Literally. I've heard her speak twice now (once at Geaux Wild in New Orleans, the second time at GO Wild in Nashville), and I've used her planners before. I keep coming back to these planners because of the layout and how easily it fits in with my life (more on that in a minute).

So, how do I use it?

Tools I Use

These days, I'm using colorful Sharpie art pens to write in events and things. I use stickers from The Glam Planner (YouTube beauty guru followers will be familiar with shop owner Elle Fowler, AKA AllThatGlitters21), and I use a variety of washi tape to mark off longer spans of time (like a river trip I went on recently).

Color Key

I've been using this color key for years...at least since college.  I was inspired by this video by - surprise! - Elle Fowler/AllThatGlitters21.
  • Pink - work
  • Orange - social
  • Green - travel
  • Turquoise - blogging
  • Royal blue - dates
  • Purple - misc. items
  • Black - to-do list items
  • Red - appointments/urgent


The Layout




My actual planning is very simple. I use my color key to write events (often putting them in clouds, pictured above), and then punctuate them with whatever "icon" stickers I have. I love these from Glam Planner because I can't get over how cute the anime-style characters are, and it's not too overwhelming on the page whenever I consult my planner on a day-to-day basis.

I also categorize my days. The Erin Condren vertical layout is separated into three boxes per day. The top box is To-Do (or important holidays, like birthdays and anniversaries), the middle box is work, the bottom box is social.



And that's pretty much it! Like I said, simple, but I love it. It fits my life the way I need it to. Do you use a particular planner? Let's talk in the comments! :)
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Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday Five: 7/21/17

I hadn’t ever heard of a “friday five” post until I came across one from a blog I follow. But I love the idea…as busy as I’ve been, I sometimes don’t have time to just sit down and collect all the favorites I’ve had over one month. One week? Easy

We shall see how long/well this goes (and don’t worry, I’ll still do monthly favorites!). So, let’s get into what my favorites were this week! It's a Friday Five, [Savannah] in Wonderland style.

My Erin Condren Planner


I’m no stranger to the planner community (I’ve been to a few planner conventions and have written about Erin Condren before), but this past month, I’ve really gotten back into using my EC planner again.

I’m going to post an updated planner setup very soon (just because I love the way it’s going so far), but I’ll say for now that this planner was well worth the buy.

Kool-Aid Slushes

I had my wisdom teeth removed this Monday. I know that having them removed at 25 is a tad late, but hey, it was something that definitely needed to be done. My mouth (specifically, the left side) is still thanking me for it.

That being said, eating soft foods have been a challenge for me since I’m a girl who loves meat and substantial things like that. While I was still recovering, Cody, my boyfriend, made us some kool-aid slushes to try while I was still a little extra tender from the surgery.

Y’all. One cup water. Once cup ice. Half-cup Kool-aid mix (the kind with sugar mixed in). Blend on high until smooth. Then add two cups ice, then blend (pulsing) until smooth. Do it. These slushes are awesome.

Sriracha on Everything

Speaking of wisdom teeth, another thing I’ve been doing a TON more is putting Sriracha on stuff. I mean, I’ve been doing that already, but it doesn’t hurt, right? ;)

Blogging

If you haven’t noticed, I did a bit of rebranding on this blog and my author website. I’ve been experimenting with things like content scheduling, ad integration, and different post ideas to get back in the swing of blogging on a regular basis again. 

Truth be told, I’ve missed blogging. A lot. And I can’t wait to share a ton more of what I’ve been doing with you guys.

Imagine Dragons!


Finally, a random musical favorite: Imagine Dragons’ latest album “Evolve.” Y’all, it’s good. 

The very first album is a classic in my opinion, and the second is pretty good. But this one…I love the 80’s-style synths, the lyrics, and the overall general upbeat nature of this album. And yes, I bought the vinyl. ;)


So what have your favorites been this week? Let’s talk in the comments! :)
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Thursday, July 13, 2017

My Favorite Middle TN Coffee Shops


I'm a coffee hound. People who know me can absolutely vouch for this. I love a good cup of joe, whether it's something I make at home or something I choose to go buy at a local coffee shop or chain.

Speaking of local coffee shops, I've enjoyed trying new ones lately. In fact, one just opened up near where I go to church (more on that in a minute). But there's something about local shops that warms my heart (pun may or may not be intended), and hey, it's always good to support local businesses.

So, what are my favorites in the Middle TN area?

Barista Parlor

I wasn't about to write a coffee post without writing about this place. I've mentioned this place plenty of times before here on [Savannah] in Wonderland, and my opinion of it still hasn't changed...it's the best. From specialty coffee with fruit notes to homemade pop-tarts and other goodies, you can't go wrong. :)

Location: East Nashville, Downtown Nashville (The Gulch), Germantown
Website: https://baristaparlor.com/

The Frothy Monkey

This one's a frequent spot for me and my girls. I love getting caramel lattes here (hot and iced). My friends also adore their turtle latte. Also, they serve a great lunch and dinner here, so come hungry for a great time with your girls or your significant other.

Location: Downtown Franklin, Downtown Nashville
Website: https://frothymonkey.com/

Coffee & Coconuts

This is the new coffee shop that just opened near my church. I've only been once, but I can already tell this will be another coffee place for my girls and I. The beachy atmosphere is adorable, and the caramel latte I tried was pretty great! I'll probably plan on trying one of their specialty coffees next time I visit.

Location: Franklin
Website: http://coffeeandcoconuts.com/
Muletown

This great coffee shop is one that's run by some family friends of ours, and their coffee is nothing short of phenomenal (If you're familiar with Puckett's in Columbia, this is where they get their coffee). I asked for a recommendation when they didn't have a Pumpkin Spice Latte, and they suggested a latte made with locally grown honey. Y'all, it was awesome.

Location: Columbia
Website: https://muletowncoffee.com/

Do y'all have any favorite coffee shops, in Middle Tennessee or otherwise? Let me know in the comments! :)

Quick disclaimer before I go: I am not paid to review these coffee shops, nor was I asked to review them. I am just here to share what I love with you guys. :)
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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Adventures in the River Country

I’d stayed on a lake and on the beach, but never on a river. So, when my boyfriend invited me to spend the July 4th long weekend on the river with his family, I was super excited.

I normally don’t spend a ton of time outdoors doing outdoors-y things, but I was excited for the adventure and willing to try new things. 

So, what did we do?


We fished. I caught my very first bass! (Cody also caught a Bluegill). We also swam. The lake water is the best on a hot day, and I even jumped off a high dock (again, something I normally don’t do, but hey, what’s a vacation without adventure?)




We hiked. And we may or may not have chased waterfalls (specifically, Fall Creek Falls and Burgess Falls).



We cooked. A lot. We made Eggs Benedict the last morning of the trip! (Not pictured: the one-pan chicken and asparagus, carrots, and Dr. Pepper ice cream from a few nights prior.)


And we celebrated our 1-month anniversary on the 1st of July! If that doesn't add the icing on the cake, I don't know what does. :)
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Friday, July 7, 2017

Mountain Dew Ice Cream!



My boyfriend and I like to cook. It's something we've gotten in the habit of doing, and I absolutely love it. He also finds the best recipes, so when we were driving in the car one day and he showed me a recipe on YouTube for Mountain Dew ice cream...you bet I was excited.

So, first of all, why Mountain Dew? Why soda? Wouldn't that be hard to mix together in ice cream? Well, you'd be surprised. And you'd also be surprised to find out that you don't even need an ice cream maker or even an ice cream attachment for your mixer for this recipe. All you really need is a standing or hand mixer.

Also, if you don't like mountain dew, no worries! Substitute your favorite 2-liter bottle of soda and any food coloring (In fact, we made a Dr. Pepper version of this that was PHENOMENAL). That being said, let's get right to this!

Mountain Dew Ice Cream

You will need the following:
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 bottle (2-liter) of Mountain Dew
  • Green food coloring (optional...it gives it a great seafoam color)
  • 1 large metal or glass bowl (can be the metal bowl in your standing mixer)
  • Standing or hand-mixer
  • 1-2 plastic containers with lids
  • Plastic wrap

1. Prepare your ice cream bowl by freezing your it for a few hours (four should be fine...you need a cold surface to mix with).

2. Next, add your heavy whipping cream to your frozen bowl. Beat the heavy whipping cream until it forms stiff peaks.

3. Once you have your cream ready, fold in the sweetened condensed milk.

4. Now, the fun part. Add your Mountain Dew. The original recipe my boyfriend and I used only called for one cup, but we used 1 and a half liters at the end of it just to get more of a soda taste. Just know that the more soda you add, the more volume of ice cream you will have. Fold that soda into your cream and condensed milk mixture.

5. At this point, add your food coloring if you would like.

6. Get your plastic containers out. Take your mixture and pour it in said containers. Once they are filled, take plastic wrap and set it on the surface (not too taut, just enough to cover). Place lids and freeze overnight.

7. After a good sleep and freezing, enjoy your new ice cream! It should be a light texture that should scoop out easily. Add soda to your ice cream to make amazing floats.

Hope you enjoyed this recipe! Let me know if y'all try this. :)
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Saturday, April 8, 2017

A Colorado Girls' Trip

Last month, I got to go to a state I'd never been to before with some of my favorite people.

Colorado has been a state I've wanted to visit for the longest time, and my friends out there have wanted me to come out there so badly. Now, I can finally say that not only have I been, I already want to go back.

So, here's what my friends and I did in Denver and Breckenridge. :)

Denver/Golden/Boulder

Denver is a cool city. As a Tennessee native, I adore Nashville's industrial side, and Downtown Denver is that times ten. Beyond Denver's limits were the towns of Golden and Border, and I fell in love with those places, too. The Denver area has a TON to offer, from restaurants to cool street art to, of course, the gorgeous mountain backdrop behind it all.
















Highlights from Denver/Golden/Boulder:
  • RED ROCKS AMPHITHEATER.
  • Chautauqua National Park
  • Tokyo Joe's
  • Larkburger
  • Linger Eatuaries
  • Little Man Ice Cream
  • The Source
  • Union Station
  • Downtown Denver in general, really

Breckenridge

My friends and I adored this little town. Some of us skied, some of us relaxed and enjoyed the town. Either way, this place was a blast for all of us.













Highlights from Breckenridge:
  • The Starbucks, which was situated in a little yellow cottage. That was our main hangout.
  • The gondola to and from Peak 9
  • The shopping
  • Downstairs at Eric's (a restaurant and arcade!)
  • ALL THE SNOW.
  • Peak 9 itself (I didn't ski, but it was cool to visit...it's like a theme park.)
And so concludes my recap of my Colorado girls' trip. Thanks so much for reading! :)
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Monday, April 3, 2017

March Favorites | 2017

I know I say something similar every month, but March has come and gone, and I can’t believe how fast it came and went.

This month was pretty big travel-wise, but I loved this month a whole lot in general. So, without further delay, I present my favorites for this past March!

Beauty


I can’t start the beauty section without mentioning my experience at Bite Beauty. The two lipsticks I made there are my absolute favorites. (If you want to know more about my making these lipsticks in San Francisco, click here.)


But as far as the rest of my makeup goes, I’ve been really loving using just the Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme sans foundation. That concealer’s coverage is so thick that I find that I don’t need really much else in the face department. Plus, it’s given my skin a chance to breathe, which is a big plus.

Music

Here are my top 5 songs for March:

  1. Symphony by Clean Bandit (feat. Zara Larsson)
  2. Waterfall by Stargate (feat. Sia and P!nk)
  3. Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men
  4. Blindside by Hunter Hunted
  5. Galway Girl by Ed Sheeran
Travel

As mentioned earlier, I traveled a ton this month. My travels were mainly on the West Coast and in the Midwest.


Y’all know that I absolutely adore California. I had not been to San Francisco in ten years, and I finally got the chance to fall in love with it again. It’s such a unique city, and I can’t wait to go back.


Then, this month, I went to the great state of Colorado for the first time! Don’t you worry, I’ll be posting more about my trip to Denver and Breckenridge, but I had a blast out there with my best friends.

Bible Verse

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when the morning dawns.” - Psalm 46:5

What were your favorite things in March? Let me know in the comments! :)
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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Bite Beauty Lip Lab San Francisco


Let me tell you about one of the coolest experiences of my life so far. 

On the corner of Sutter and Fillmore Street in San Francisco is the Bite Beauty Lip Lab. One of only four locations in the world, this little shop isn't just a place to buy Bite Beauty makeup. Oh, no.


It's called a Lip Lab for a reason.



It all started when I made an appointment for the Bespoke lipstick experience a couple of days prior. On the day of the appointment, Mom and I walked into the Lip Lab. 

I thought I knew what to expect based on what I saw on YouTube. I had what lipstick colors I wanted in mind (including names!), but it was a whole different ballgame when the technician pulled out an entire tray full of colors. It was like an artist's palette, but with any lipstick I could think of or imagine. 

Still, I stuck with exactly what I wanted; one blush pink, the other a bubblegum shade with a violet kick. And I chose a matte finish, which, in Bite Beauty terms, means a creamy, no-shimmer base. No chalky mattes here.

So, the technician (shoutout to Rhianna, who was AWESOME and totally got my vision) went to work. She first put together a version of "Savannah in Wonderland" (the blush pink) that was more orange-leaning. 


"Savannah in Wonderland", version 1

I decided to definitely go more pink - since I modeled this shade after this blog - and once she added that extra pink pigment, it was perfect. (In fact, comparing it to this website, I can't believe how well it actually matches.)



"Savannah in Wonderland", version 2; the winner!

Next, she went to work on the second bubblegum/violet shade, "We're All Mad Here." Rhianna got the shade exactly perfect on the first go, and I fell in love with it immediately.


"We're All Mad Here"

Finally, I got to pick some scents. I chose cherry, and y'all, it smells like cherry Kool-Aid.


Once we had the two shades down, we went over to the actual lab to have the lipsticks made. She whipped together larger chunks of the pigments, put them each in the microwave, softened them, and put them in molds. Then, after in sitting in dry ice for a few minutes, the molds came off, and I had two lipsticks.






It's one thing to have your lipsticks be mixed together on a piece of plastic, but it's another ballgame entirely once they're in tubes.



Overall, this experience was a dream come true. If I had the opportunity to do this again, I would, and with the same colors, too. (They make a color profile for you that has the "recipes" for each lipstick so you can reorder them easily.)

If you want to do this, you can. It's $150 for the entire appointment, and it took about an hour for the consultation and for everything to be mixed and made. Plus, you get a goody bag filled with lip scrub, a lip mask, and a lip primer/liner.

If you prefer a less expensive (and faster) option, though, there's a $55 option where you can choose just a premade color, a finish, and a scent (and for two, it's $80). But I can't recommend the custom experience enough to y'all.

If you do decide to go for the Bespoke option, here are some tips:
  • Know what you want beforehand. Do some research. Look at your own makeup collection. Do you find yourself looking for specific shades, but find they just don't work with your skin tone? Do you have favorite colors that you would prefer to wear everyday, but would rather them be more sheer or more pigmented? Need that perfect shade of red, but can't find it? Those situations would be perfect for this appointment.
  • Make an actual appointment to do this. Walk-ins are welcome, but there are quite a few who come in parties, so keep that in mind. It's best to make an appointment a couple days in advance at least by calling them ahead of time.
  • Work with your technician, and don't be afraid to speak up if something's not exactly the way you want it. Explaining your vision further and as clearly as you can will be helpful for you both. She's there to make your dream lipstick, so make sure you're in love with it. 
  • Most of all...have fun!!

If you go to the San Francisco location, ask for Rhianna (and tell her I said hi!). Otherwise, you can go do this in San Jose, New York, or Toronto (for all you amazing Canadians). 


Would you go do something like this? What lipstick would you make? Let me know in the comments! :)
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