Thursday, November 28, 2013

Best Black Friday Deals

I can't believe Thanksgiving is almost here!  Now on to the shopping!  I've never been much of a Black Friday Shopper-- great deals but too many people in one place for me to feel content.    Also, there really isn't anything I need that bad. So I resort to online shopping for my needs.

Here's a list of some great Black Friday Fashion deals going on:

1. ASOS: Get as much as 70% off of men’s and women’s fashions. Sign up for their email list if you want to receive information on additional deals. New customers get $10 off your first order if you spend $100 or more with the promo code 10WELCOME. You also get free shipping.

2. Macy's: Up to 40% off designer coats. Also up to 50% off of cutlery, and some dinnerware.

3. BCBG: Treat yourself to 15 percent off when you use the code WELCOME2013 now through Nov. 30 online.

4.  Forever 21: Enjoy pre-Black Friday sales at Forever 21 beginning Nov. 20!  Featuring styles up to 50% off. On Nov. 29, look forward to yellow-tag deals with items starting at $3.

5. Charlotte Russe - Shoes buy one get one for $10.  All outerwear for $25.  BOGO denim $10.

6. Gap: Enjoy 50 percent off on Nov. 29, and score 40 percent off storewide from Nov. 30 through Dec. 2.

7. Vince Camuto: Take 20 percent off with code THANKS online from now through Nov. 30.

8. Juicy Couture: You'll receive a free Wild For Juicy mug when you spend $100 or more on Black Friday.

9. Target:  Ladies’ Exhilaration Fashion Boots on sale for $18. So if you buy two pairs of boots at $18 each on Black Friday and use the $5 off $20 coupon, you’ll get them for just $15.50 each after the coupon and sale.

10. Express: $10 off shoes,  25% off watches, 40% off online purchases, 30% off one item purchases

Don't forget to Linkup with me about your favorite Holiday Traditions, whether it be Thanksgiving, Black Friday traditions, Christmas, and New Years I'd love to hear it all! 

Showered With Design

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Favorite Holiday Traditions Link Up

I know it's not even Thanksgiving yet, but the malls already have Christmas trees, my neighbors have Christmas lights, and I am getting extremely antsy 
since my Birthday's over-- I just want to start decorating!  
But I know in the past I just want to wait until after Thanksgiving to really start decorating.  

Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year.  There's something about the pretty lights, the decorations, and spending quality time with family. Most of all I love the traditions that come along with the Holidays from decorating the Christmas Tree to baking my favorite cookies with my mom. This season, I wanted to start my very first linkup for your favorite Holiday Traditions.  You can show your Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa spirit or what ever you celebrate! The more the merrier!

All you have to do is :
2. Grab my linkup button below & Link back to my blog post
3. Link-up from now until Christmas.  
4.  Follow via GFC/Bloglovin

It's a great way to meet new blogger friends, and get in the Christmas spirit!  Share your favorite recipes, unique traditions, even photos of your Holiday decorations.  

Read about my Favorite Holiday Baking Recipe

Showered With Design

Monday, November 18, 2013

Birthday Weekend Shenanigans

This past weekend was my Birthday weekend -- yes I celebrated multiple days.. One is just not enough!  So I chose to write all about my Birthday festivities:

Friday : Most of the workday was spent enjoying  a delicious lunch bought for everyone in the office for my co-worker & I's Birthdays (we share the same birthday!)  We had a short office meeting that day too, so the workload wasn't too hectic.  And we received a Bonus.. man what a great way to end my Friday workday. 
Friday night, my fiance and I were heading to a "surprise" restaurant.  He didn't want me to know where we were going.  As soon as we got there, all my friends were there to surprise me.   After dinner, we head to my favorite local country bar.  We line danced, I took a few Birthday shots and had a blast!

Saturday :  My fiances boss planned a trip to Hollywood for all of my girlfriends and our boys.  He had a limo pick us up and we had such a blast singing, drinking, and dancing the whole hour to Hollywood.  We arrived at a delicious restaurant on top of a hill called Yamashiro.  It had the most gorgeous view of LA.  My friend and I tried caviar for the first time! It really wasn't as bad as I thought.  After dinner we started heading out to some of the local bars in the area and danced the night away.  My stomach hurt from all the laughing between us all.  I am so grateful to have such amazing friends in my life and I'm glad I was able to meet some new friends this weekend too!  I went to bed way past my bedtime, I never thought at 25 that I would ever say "It's too late!"

Sunday : On Sunday, my fiance and I head to my parents house so we could all ride together to the aquarium.  My parents Anniversary is also my Birthday, so I thought it would be nice to do something fun, yet relaxing together.  There were so many neat sea creatures.  My favorite was the otters, they were so playful! After the aquarium we went out to a nice dinner and had a view of the ocean.  It was a perfect way to end an amazing Birthday weekend.  I was so exhausted from all the festivities I hit the bed much earlier than usual and slept through the night.

Hope you had a fun filled weekend!  What did you do?  

Sami's Shenanigans

My Favorite Holiday Treat

Untitled #10

My absolute favorite time of the year is Christmas and the Holiday Season.  Not only do I love receiving and giving presents but I love to bond with my family by baking.  One of the traditions in my family to bake are Butternut Snowballs.  They are super easy to make and delicious! They usually only last in our household for a day or two, because everyone ends up eating them!
This little snowball of a cookie is not overly sweet and it's a perfect addition to your holiday treats!

Ingredients ( passed down from my great grandmother)

1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups finely chopped pecans
Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla until fluffy.  Sift flour with salt and add to creamed mixture blending well.
Add nuts and mix well.  Shape into 1 inch balls and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake at 325 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Do not brown.
Let cool and then roll in powdered sugar.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

25 in 25

Happy Birthday to ME! In honor of my 25th Birthday I thought I'd share 25 Things I have learned over the past 25 years of my life.  This is my 115th post.  I remember the struggles of trying to figure out what my very first blog post could be about.  I'm still semi-new to this little ole blogging journey, but I have learned so much over this past year.  Growing up, I always thought the number "24" was when I'd be married, and thought it sounded so old.  Now I look back, and laugh at myself.  I'll be married at this age of 25, so I guess I was pretty close.  With that being said, 25 is going to be my most favorite year--I just know it! 
Gosh, now that I think of it, I'm halfway to 50!  Wow, that's a scary thought.

  •  I will be married to the man of my dreams at the age of 25.
  • We both have set jobs at 25.
  • We will be living in our own home at 25.
  • I will be seeing Britney Spears in Vegas at 25. 
  • I will be going on not one but two cruises at 25. (Bachelorette & Honeymoon! Whoop whoop!)                  

Here's what I've learned in the past 25 years:

1. It's ok to stay home on the weekends.
I never thought I'd hear these words come out of my mouth
I've always been either going out or working every weekend.  I've learned that
I really can just stay home, relax, and snuggle up with my fur babies.  Of course, I like to go out, however, if I don't I won't feel bad or ashamed about it (like I did when I was 22). 
Man have times changed!

2. Keep in contact with your friends.  
It gets harder as you grow up to keep in contact with friends, however, it works both ways.
Making a simple effort can help keep contact.  Remember, they were in your life for a reason, don't let it slip away.  It's hard to find genuine people, so keep the ones you find around.

 3. Save for a rainy day.
My dad taught me this, and it will forever be engraved in my mind.
You never know what can happen.  Life throws some interesting curves, and when or if it does, that one time you said no to those cute boots, could help you pay off something you need to.  Example: Emergency surgery, car repairs, emergency flight (you could be stuck somewhere and need to get home ASAP)

3. Communication is one of the most important things in any relationship.
Whether it be a relationship with your fiance, or your girlfriends.  Having that communication could save you a fight or two.  Trust me on this one.  I could have saved myself a few too many arguments if I were to have communicated properly.


4. Never be afraid to take a chance.
Life is too short to wait around for an opportunity.  
If life throws one your way, don't be afraid to take it.
You don't want to have any regrets on an opportunity that might never come by again.

5. Family will always be there for you.  No matter what.
Throughout this past year, I have grown extremely close to my mom.  I don't know what it is about this year, but what I do know is that she is and has always been there for me.  We didn't exactly get along like "normal" mom's and daughters in middle school and high school.  So for us to finally be close is what I had always hoped for.  I know she always had my best interest at heart, and I'm glad I finally matured enough to realize how amazing she is.

6. Forgive; and let the past be the past.
This has always been a toughie.  When bad things happen, I always think about the worst things that have happened in the past.  What I've learned from my experiences, is that the past is the past for a reason.  Always forgive because no one is perfect.  I'm not saying forget, because that's practically impossible, however don't bring up past situations.  
My mom always taught me, "Forgiveness is the most important part of love."

7. Don't compare yourself to anyone else.
You are your own person. Be you.  You can use other people for inspiration.
Do things differently.  Don't let anyone tell you different. You are beautiful.  
You are unique and no one else can be you.

8. Happiness is what you define it.
No one can define happiness. It's different for everyone.  
Everyone has there own way of being happy.  Only you know what makes you happy.

9. Be grateful for what life has given you.
See the beauty in the little things. 
Be thankful for everything you have.

10. Learn to smile more often.
One simple smile at a stranger can change their whole day around.
I've always been a happy person, so smiling comes natural to me, however, that doesn't mean those of you who aren't smile-ofteners (yep. made that up) can't learn to show those pearly whites as often as possible.  Try it today to a stranger.

11. You're not a girl, not yet a woman.  
Thanks Brit.  That song will forever be in my head, and I don't feel young, but I also don't feel like a woman.  Just hearing the word "woman" scares me.  Yikes! 
Can I be Peter Pan and never grow up?

12. Fall in Love when you are ready, not when you're lonely.
Don't waste your time on someone just because you are lonely and don't like to be alone.
Save that time for someone who really matters.

13. You are the only one who can take care of your body.
Do it for your future, your health.  What you put into your body can have long term effects.
I know we don't all think of this on a daily basis, but it's a good start if you  want prevent spending most of your elder years in a hospital.  
Take care of yourself now for a better future.
14. Life is too short to be "normal."
I'll admit it.  I am quite unusual. I like to joke, laugh, have fun at times and at others I like to keep to myself and relax with my fur babies.  I'm weird, occasionally act like a 12 year old and am goofy about 80% of the time.  Over the years I've learned to let down, and not try to fit in this so-called "normal"existence some people expect you to be.  Yes I may belch louder than your 13 year old son, and may have accidentally pulled a "Britney" when getting out of my vehicle..  I may not act like a lady at all times, but that's what makes me who I am.
  I am different and I embrace it. 
 Don't act like you've never belched in your life.. get real.

15.  Cherish the time spent with your close friends, and family.
You never know when they will no longer be around.  Don't take anything for granted.
Appreciate all lessons they have taught you.
16.  Challenge Yourself.
You will never grow stronger as a person if you don't challenge yourself.  It's not bad to take the easy way out occasionally, but not all the time. Push yourself to strive for the best.

17. Appreciate the little things in life.  
Such as sunshine, beautiful flowers, nature. 
I've learned to appreciate the beauty in things.

18. Be kind to everyone.
My favorite saying is "Live in such a way that if someone should speak badly of you, 
no one would believe it"

19. See the positive in every situation.
Even when things get you down, there's always a reason.  
Try to see the good in everything, even if it's tough.

20. It's ok to try new things.
No you will not die,  well.. unless you do something extremely outrageous like
 swimming with sharks.   Then I hold no responsibility.
21. Wear dresses more often.
I never was much of a dress girl in high school. Unless it was for a special event, or homecoming.  Now, I have more casual everyday dresses, and you know what - I feel more feminine in them.   I know this is super random, but it's 
the little things that make a big difference.

22. Don't Rush.
Take time to plan things out.  Think before you act.  I tend to make better choices by thinking through it before acting on the spot.

23. The grass isn't always greener.
It's true.  It looks great, but doesn't mean it's going to make you happy.

24.Never let someone else change you or your ideas.
Don't let anyone else influence your decisions.  
You can seek to others for advice, but only you will be your best judgement.

25. There is still so much I don't know.
That's the beauty of life.  There's always something new to learn.  There will never be a time you won't learn something new.  I'm excited what this year has to offer and what my next journey has in store for me. What a thrill!

If you are interested in reading how we got engaged, you can read about our story here. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Fall Wedding Favorites

Fall is one of the most beautiful times of the year, when the leaves begin to show colors of orange and red tones.  Don't get me wrong, I am in love with Summer, (California girl forever) but being an artist, I have always incorporated  these colors in my work, and I always look towards these colors and this time of year for inspiration.  I wanted to have my engagement photos done in October because I knew the leaves would be changing and the colors would turn out fantastic!-- and that they sure did!

If I didn't choose to have a summer wedding, I probably would have chosen October.  There are so many great wedding ideas for fall weddings.  Here are my top 5 favorites:

 1. You can incorporate fall leaves into your table decorations.  Such a simple, inexpensive and beautiful item for decor.
Fall Wedding Centerpieces | Wedding Ideas, Fall Wedding Centerpiece Ideas Diy: fall wedding ...  Keywords: #fallweddings #jevelweddingplanning Follow Us: 
Also a great idea is to flowers in the aisles.  A much cheaper alternative!
Walk way out lined in leaves but would have something covering the ground instead of just grass :) 
2. Your wedding photos will have gorgeous color in them.  Since brides normally wear ivory or white, having autumn leaves will really make your dress pop!
Fall wedding Fall Wedding Ideas Photography
3.  You can serve a fun festive signature cocktail at your wedding: Something like a pumpkin martini!
Martini  - signature cocktail for fall wedding 
4.  Your bridesmaids' dresses can be fun fall colors!
Bridesmaids - color contrast

Gibbet hill, fall bridesmaids dresses 

5. My alltime favorite:  Your wedding dress can have gorgeous lacey long sleeves.  ( I totally invisioned having a long lacey dress, but I wanted a summer wedding-- but I think they are gorgeous!!!)

Long sleeve wedding dresses lace
lace wedding dress lace wedding dresses 
What are some of your favorite fall wedding favorites? 

P.S.  How nice is Starbucks to do this for my Birthday?

 starbucks free holiday drinks

Ingredient Swaps - Healthier Options

Untitled #48

Ever wonder if there's an easier way to make your meals healthier?  Well you're in luck!  Here's seven ingredients that will make your meals a healthier option for you, your friends, and your family:

1. Try using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream (Makes chip dip healthier- especially my favorite onion dip-- also great for use on tacos)
2. Use spaghetti squash instead of pasta (When I am craving pasta dishes I tend to swap it out for squash because it's a veggie so it's a much healthier option)
3. Use a banana instead of an egg.  ( Try it when making pancakes, or cake. I love bananas!)
4. Use olive oil instead of butter ( When cooking anything! My go-to)
5.Use avocado instead of mayonnaise ( Try on your sandwiches-- I've never been a mayo-lover, so this is a must to keep sandwiches moist)
6.Use date sugar instead of Splenda- (Splenda and artificial sweeteners have "chemicals" which have said to be bad for your health for many reasons.
7. Use almond milk instead of cow’s milk (for cereal, cooking, or drinking-- it's my favorite! and has many nutrients!)

Monday, November 11, 2013

Wishing Tree Designs


I can't believe the Holidays are right around the corner! Between wedding planning and having a life, this year sure has gone by fast! 

 I just recently ordered our save the dates, and I wanted to send out a cute Christmas card with some of our engagement photos for the family to enjoy.  My all-time favorite greeting card site is called Wishing Tree Designs.  I ordered my friends bridal shower invitations from them, and they turned out super adorable!  Here's a little refresher.
So I figured, why not use them for our first Christmas card together.  
Also a great way to display some of our engagement photos!  Dang I'm smart.

They have so many cute options and right now they are 40% off!
I know, I know, they are perfect. You can thank me later. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Birthday Wishlist

It's officially my Birthday MONTH.  I turn 25 this year - specifically on November 17th, but of course I have to start my wishlist early.  Luckily for those with November Birthdays, all the items will also be on my Christmas wishlist.  Here's a small selection of my favorites:

 Birthday Wishlist

Last weekend was my fiances 26th Birthday, and our one year anniversary of being engaged.  If you missed the story, you can read all about our engagement story here.
Anywhooo, this weekend I surprised my future hubby with personalized Nike shoes he's been wanting, a birthday dinner with my parents, and a Sunday Brunch Cruise on a yacht.  It was the most perfect weekend, and I couldn't have asked for a more amazing man to spend the rest of my life with. November will always be an amazing month to us because my fiances Birthday is on Nov 2, mine is Nov 17, my parents Anniversary is Nov 17 also! (except I am a horrible-selfish daughter and have never catered to the fact that it's their anniversary.. gosh I need to change that.) I have so many ideas for my birthday but I don't know what to choose!  1. Line Dancing, 2. Bowling (always a fav), 3. Catalina, 4. Dinner with Friends, 5. LB Aquarium (always wanted to). 6. Wine Tasting (still never been!!)  Any suggestions?? I am all ears!
Anyways here are some photos:

xoxo -L

Friday, November 1, 2013

Classy or Trashy?

Hope you all had a Happy Halloween,  we only had 6 Trick-or-Treaters. What has happened?!  Anyways, Happy November!! It's my birthday month, and I am too excited!  

So, we ordered our save the dates last night, ah everything for wedding planning is coming together so well!  But I do have one issue in regards to weddings,  I have seen way too much cleavage on some gorgeous ladies on there wedding day.  I mean to each there own, but this is the one day you really don't need to be flaunting the girls.  I kind of feel like its tacky, and your wedding should be classy. Maybe it's just me. What is your take on it?

Classy or Trashy?