Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Great Day!

Dress, bag, and shoes: Thrifted

Dress c/o eShakti
Today was a good day. Really good. It started off with a press conference, then a meeting with a new client, followed by an impromptu lunch with one of my favorite friends, Casey Wohl. She just so happens to be the Getaway Girl so you should be following her. She has an amazing 12 Days 'til Christmas promotion going on during the month of December and you will definitely want to enter to win!

When I came home, I found a box at my doorstep with this beautiful dress in it! You will have to forgive my excitement, but this is only my second gift to the blog, so I am still a bit in awe. I can't wait to wear it, in the meantime check out eShakti. I was really impressed with the selection, it was so hard to choose a sample. I went with this dress because I felt it would get the most use.

What a blessing, especially during a time when I have been struggling. It was divine encouragement from above I am sure. I was chatting with a close friend, who just happens to be a therapist, and she said, "There is pain in growth, there is no growth without pain." Those words encouraged me more than the dress on my doorstep.

1000 Gifts
45. Good days
46. Dresses
47. Books
48. Girlfriends
49. New recipies
50. A quite house
51. Watching babies sleep

Monday, November 26, 2012


Today I not only wore a vest, but I invested. I invested in people, meeting with Polk Works to see how we can partner to help them with their clothing closet through our runway show next September. Getting dressed for work is as easy as walking to my closet. But many of the people going through the programs at Polk Works don't even own one work appropriate outfit. Perspective gained, and I thanked God. Even when my tripod and I awkwardly almost got run over in this alley. Blogger problems, ha!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Message

Dress: Tibi, Clutch: Nine West, Beads: Vintage, Booties: Tahari

I needed to hear our pastor's message today. It is so refreshing to witness him stand in front of the church and admit their struggles as a family. You see, he had some disruption in his home during this week of Thanksgiving and felt that many others probably did too. Boy was he right on target, so much so that he must have had a bug in my home.

We talked about James 4:1-10, what causes fights and quarrels. Ultimately they come from our desires that battle within us. When we don't get what we want then we quarrel and fight. When we ask for things we don't receive them because we are asking with wrong motives, that we may spend for our pleasures.

I guess it is time for truth, that's what this journey is about right? 

Ever since the first of November I have been struggling. I thought that because I had agreed to submit, things would be far better and I would be more joyful. They haven't been, and I have not been. Life has been harder. I now know it is because I have had to let go of some things, and I haven't had the right attitude about it. Some of these things brought joy, and to give them up stripped me of my mini escapes from everyday life, hurts, etc. I suppose I thought God would magically make me grateful, but instead I have been bitter because I am on a tight budget. I can't run through Starbucks, go on fancy date nights, head out on impromptu weekend trips, get my nails done, blow through Marshalls' clearance rack, or get a massage. I am embarrassed about the brat I have become, but I am just being real.

Our pastor talked about sources of pain in our homes, and wouldn't you know number one on the list was selfish desires. I think my selfishness during submitting has given satan an open door to attack. He knows that I am on a mission, and I have allowed him to get in my head, and bring up old hurts and insecurities. I have taken it out on my husband, and my family. For that I am sorry.

Sometimes I feel like I should hold back on the blog, but then I remind myself that I would be lying if I pretended it was all candy canes and gumdrops and I didn't have one ounce of temptation or struggle. So there you go, and now you know how to be praying for me. Here's to a better week ahead! :)

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Garnet & Gold

I don't do game day T-shirts, dresses, etc. I am someone who rarely watches the game, but just attends for socializing and football food. I am trying to like football though. Truth: I have the game on right now and my husband is not even home, (he went to the game.) So in his honor, I wore garnet & gold my way to support him and his favorite team, FSU.

P.S. a funny story, he washed this scarf, and shrunk it. Sick at the thought of throwing it away, I ironed it out and it is the perfect length to throw around my neck. He will be glad he is out of the dog house, and I am glad I found a way to save the scarf!

1000 Gifts (The list continues!)
36. Baking
37. Fireplaces burning
38. Cool morning runs
39. Repurposing
40. Saturday Morning Pancakes
41. Clean Sheets
42. My children's artwork
43. Story telling
44. Hot tea
45. God's grace
46. Leftovers
47. Hands that craft
48. Candle light
49. Family time
50. A night without plans

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


We Floridians totally underestimate the power of tights. During the cooler months they allow us to wear things like shorts, skirts, and dresses. You can add color, interest, and warmth all by throwing on a pair of tights. What really excites me is that by adding in tights, my winter wardrobe doubles instantly! Score!

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Trisha Treat Bag

Top: matty m., Vest: Daisy Fuentes (a gift), Jeans: Citizens of Humanity
Booties: Tahari, Bag: Michael Kors, Belt: Banana Republic

Bracelet: The Hunger Site
My friends are amazing! It is only month two of my spending freeze and this vest is the second clothing gift I have received. When my sweet friend Trisha cleans out her daughter's and her own closet, she always brings me fun bags of goodies. I LOVE my Trisha treat bags! My daughter is the lucky recipient of beautiful dresses, shoes and more. Trish always throws in a couple of items for me too. This particular bag was an extra special blessing as it had jackets in it that worked for BOTH of my toddlers. They have way outgrown theirs from last year. Pretty convenient when you are on a spending freeze,  God is so good! I have so much to be thankful for! 

1000 Gifts
25. Warm clothes
26. Watching impromptu baptisms
27. Volunteering with friends
28. Naps
29. Refrigerators running
30. New clients
31. Back porch picnics
32. Recipes
33. Crayons
34. Puzzles
35. My stocked pantry

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Tea Time

Meet my new favorite tea. Kusmi Tea is absolutely wonderful and chocolat et orange is my fav. I was introduced to Kusmi in last month's Birchbox. In love.

As for the new budget, and my shopfast....I am doing better, my attitude is continuing to improve with only occasional set backs. I am really excited to share my DIY gifts, but at the same time I see so many things I would love to purchase for family and friends. I have always loved shopping during the holiday season, finding the perfect gifts for the ones that I love.

I am excited though, to see how my Christmas will be enhanced without the stresses of holiday shopping. Who knows, this simple Christmas may just be the best ever.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

So Excited!

I am so excited! First, I finally have a plan in place to hold an inspirational runway show right here in my home town! It will be held in September of 2013, and my company is partnering with the Polk Theatre to make this happen. I will have more to share on this soon, so hang tight.

Second, the amazing article that Gary White with The Ledger published for The 12X12 Project!

Third, this skirt that I found several months back at Goodwill, with tags! Believe it or not, out of all shopping, I miss thrifting the most. But I have been very good, and I am learning the fun of experimenting with the many items in my closet. God really has been showing me how much I have to work with and how much I have to be thankful for. So, my list continues below, in no particular order:

1000 Gifts
17. Juicy grapefruit
18. Fresh air
19. Homemade soup simmering
20. The smell of bread baking
21. Babies being born
22. Dancing with my husband while cleaning
23. Running with a friend
24. Hand me downs

Friday, November 09, 2012

Not the Outfit in my Head

Necklace: Stella & Dot, Skirt: Gap, Boots: Sam Edelman, Bag: Kate Spade

Have you ever thought up an outfit in your head, tried it on, and it was nothing like you had imagined? That happened to me this morning. The top I wanted to wear was NOT working with this silver skirt, it looked so much better put together in my head. So in a last minute panic, this statement necklace saved the day and this sad long sleeved tee!

My attitude has been improving slowly, and I even did a little cleaning yesterday for the first time in about eight years! Things have really been put into perspective, and I have been praying hard to focus on the good. So excited about the weekend time to relax with the family! Right now I am being called to a tea party in the living room, let the good times roll! :)

1000 Gifts
11. Hot coffee
12. Warm slippers
13. Eskimo kisses
14. Things that sparkle
15. Living room tea parties
16. Friday afternoons

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Accepting Change

Since completing the October Dress Project, I have have really neglected the blog. I will be honest, my attitude has been a little sour too. Cutting back requires not only sacrifice, but more work on my end... and that has left me feeling a bit deflated. I have to say over the past couple of weeks the enemy has really been working me over. I am sure it is because he knows I have committed to the 12X12 Project.

Talking about giving up little things in my life didn't seem like a big deal, but then doing it with a cheerful heart has been harder than I imagined. Here are a list of things that I have decided to cut out in effort to be more responsible with our money.

1. My housekeeper-(REALLY struggling with this one!)
2. Sea World/Busch Gardens/Aquatica Passes-(This is going to be REALLY hard the next time the kids ask to go.)
3. Bi-weekly pedicures (I'm okay with this, but it really is not the same doing it myself.)
4. Eating out/ordering takeout during the week (Totally crappy when I have planned poorly.)
5. Looking to downsize from my SUV for a lesser payment and better gas milage. (Really will miss the size of my vehicle.)

I KNOW how selfish this sounds, as those I long to help have SO much less, but this is my journey. So I am just being honest and tracking my feelings. Right now it's not the shopping at ALL that is getting me. It is giving up the luxuries that I took for granted daily. I know that God is going to teach me so much through this, so my goal is to focus on being grateful for what I have....instead of the luxuries I am giving up!

1000 Gifts
6. Hands that clean
7. Our awesome parks
8. Family foot rubs
9. Home cooked meals
10. Transportation

Thursday, November 01, 2012

October Dress Project 2012, Recap

Top: Target, Skirt: Loft, Shoes: Guess, Jewelry: Stella & Dot and random

Wakami Eight Strand Bracelet, for 12 X 12 Project November cause: Hunger

October Dress Project Recap, All opinions are mine! :) 

1. My Favorite! 

2. My Least Favorite (I must have been having a slow creative day)

3. Most Colorful/Original

4. Most Days Unwashed, (3 days) 

5. Most Creative

I am so excited that it is November! Not only do I have a different outfit, I have a different outlook. This year is sure to bring much change in the selfishness that I have struggled with for years. My husband and I have talked a lot this week about ways to cut back, get caught up, give, and save. Scary, but freeing at the same time.

We have a big year ahead, and I am so excited about what God is doing through the 12 X 12 Project! The focus this month is hunger, and It has been awesome to see that so many are willing to jump on board. There is so much need, even right here in our county. I was at my daughter's school today for a walk-a-thon, and I was heartbroken tying the tattered shoes of one little girl. There were several children that looked like they hadn't had a bath in days. Dirty clothes and hair, but sweet smiles. As I handed a little boy his card after marking his lap, I called him by name and said, "good job." He looked up at me with big brown eyes and asked, "how do you know me?" I smiled back and pointed to his name on the card. In return I got a high five and a HUGE smile. I was happy to know him. I actually wanted to take him home, but that would have been kidnapping. :)

The changes and sacrifices I will be making over this year will be challenging, but I KNOW the rewards are going to be so much greater. Especially if the rewards are going to someone in need. I am blessed!

1000 Gifts
1. A closet full of clothes
2. Cool walks
3. High fives from new friends
4. Bubble baths
5. Full bellies