Mar 4, 2015

Energy and Work Quote - March 2015

energy, work, happiness, quote, happy, change, focus
This is a free printable for you to be able to display in your home.


I LOVE how perfectly this quote goes with my word of the year which is ENERGY and my goals for this month, which are all centered around work (more on that here).  Socrates had it right.  I love everything about this quote.  

How many of us fight the old?  I know I do.  I am so much better at this now than I was in the past, but I am still working on it every day.  If you feel like you put way to much energy into the past and it is frustrating you...know that you are not alone, and that we work at it and change that now.  

I know I will focus on the past so much that it will physically give me a headache.  Honestly, what good does focusing on the past do?  It is terrible.  I get that you can learn from the past, but dwelling on it or trying to fix the past is exhausting and really you cannot change it (big UNFORTUNATELY). 

However, we can build a very bright future for ourselves if we put our energy into that.  I think how much more energy I would have if I would just stop panicking about the past and looking forward to the future.  

I could take what I learned and move forward.  Therefore, making my future a better one.  I could also show my daughter (by example) how to build a bright future.  The first step is not fighting the past.

So let's start building the new.  Let's stop fighting the past.  Let's make this month a great one by starting this today.  I hope we can all see an increase in energy if we do this.  

Good luck and don't forget about the challenge I extended this month along with the giveaway!


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Mar 3, 2015

Do the Twist!


This post is by Laura, beauty/hair contributor!

March.  Holy cow!  That came fast!  By now we are all probably getting into the swing of things and finding our groove, if you will, for this new year.  I have started a new job this year and I am always looking for quick and easy ways to style my hair for work.  Today I am going to share two incredibly quick ways to throw your hair up or just switch it up in just a few minutes before you run out the door.  Even if you work at home, having your hair done is somehow quite satisfying.  You feel better and are more liking to have a productive day if you get ready, even with just a simple hair-do.

Braids are always beautiful and fun, but I spent a whole summer learning to French braid my own bangs/hair, and to this day I struggle with them.  Some days, they are perfect and other days I can do it a million times and it still looks terrible.  This is when I discovered “twists.”  I am sure you have seen them before.  They are quite popular! In my opinion they are much more realistic for an every-day look that will end up looking fabulous.  Today will be two simple looks that you can play with and make your own.  They have both worked fantastically for me!  

The first is for those of you who actually need to have your hair pulled back.  It starts with a twist in the front.  Part your hair on the side (whichever side you prefer), then start the twist at your part going across the front of your hairline, and continue the twist back behind the ear and along your neckline.  Once you have reached the corner of your neckline, you will gather the rest of your hair and create a side braid.  I did a normal braid, but feel free to change it up with a fishtail braid or a 4-strand braid.  Just whatever floats your boat.  Super easy, right?!  It is quick and classy and you won’t look like you just rolled out of bed. ;)




**I forgot to take a pic of the front of this style, so this is what the front would look like.

The next style is similar, but if you can leave your hair down.  For this style you will also part your hair on the side.  On the side that has the part, section off that side and twist away!  Use a bobby pin to secure the twist, first go in the direction of the twist then send it back towards your hairline to get a nice tight hold.  (Don’t get it too tight or you will end up with a headache throughout the day!)  Feel free to curl your hair or leave it straight.  It looks great both ways.  This is a more edgy look, but it will switch things up and look great!

My cute sister, Heather, modeling these fun looks!  Again…I forgot to take a good pic of the side, so I did it on my short hair so you could see how it would look.  But it will work with all lengths of hair!



If you are feeling adventurous and just want to French braid your hair, then by all means go for it, but if you are short on time but want something similar, twist that hair!  You will love having your hair out of your face and something easy to do when you only have a few minutes before you need to get going!

Mar 2, 2015

Quest for MORE happiness: March 2015

work, happiness, happy


Last month Morgan won the book "Marriage isn't for You".  It is such a great book and the great news is she is getting married in April so this is a perfect book for her at a perfect time.  Although, it is good for all of us.  I wanted to share with you what she did that was out of the ordinary for her finance.  She did 14 days of love for Valentine's Day.  So she did different things like tickled his back and played with his hair.  Different things that he loves and she said she did it more than usual.  See how easy it can be and I am sure he felt more love from her while she did it.  Congrats Morgan!


My goals for March

Remember my basis of this is from the AMAZING BOOK , The Happiness Project.  This month all my goals are centered around work.  That includes 2 things for me.  One is my actual profession.  I am a controller over health clubs.  Two is this blog that is a labor of love.  I love both of these jobs and I want to focus my attention on them this month.


work, happiness, happy
This is one of Gretchen's goals from the book.  When I read it inially I was thinking, "Yeah right.  Who enjoys failure."  However, as I thought about it I thought this was a perfect goal for me.  I am a perfectionist through and through.  So when I "fail" I feel terrible and sometimes that feeling can last for days.  If I enjoy failure and know that it is a learning process then life is so much better.  On top of that I need to realize that the only reason I am failing is because I am actually trying.  I can not expect perfection from myself all the time.  


work, happiness, happy
Since I have 2 parts of my work life then I have two parts to this goal.  Recently, I hired an assistant for me to help with my accounting work.  Seriously the best choice EVER and he has been amazing.  It is sometimes hard for me to ask for help.  I hate asking for help because I try and rationalize with myself that I can do it all, but I need to remember that I have him there to help me.  Not to sit there and twittle his thumbs.  Second, when it comes to the blogging world I am still pretty new.  It is really hard for me to ask for help because I think I can figure it out myself.  However, recently I have turned to some pretty amazing woman for help and to bounce ideas off of (looking at you Kami from Sweet Charli and Natalie from The Creative Mom).  They have been so amazing to basically mentor me.  On top of that I found a blogging friend that started around the same time I did (Ann from Dripping Paintbrush) and she has been heaven sent to talk to and to be there as someone to help me think things through. 


Again breaking it down into my two work lives.  First, I have not been utilizing my mornings like I used to when it comes to my accounting job.  I used to get anywhere from 1-2 hours in before my daughter even woke up.  Lately I barely get anytime in (more on that later this month).  Also, I need to make sure to buckle down and be as productive as possible when I have help from great people in my life with my daughter.  Second, I need to stick to my blog schedule.  I used to be really good and really efficient and that has not been the case recently.  So my goal this month is to STICK to it!  


work, happiness, happy
Sometimes, well almost all the time, I wish I was a little farther along on a project with work or I wish I had higher numbers on my blog.  I wish I could do this or I wish I could do that.  SO SAD.  I am wishing my life away.  So my goal this month is to be happy where I am at in my work life.  Enjoy NOW and not wish for the future.


work, happiness, happy
Ahhh!  This one scares me to write on this blog.  I will be telling you why I haven't been on here as much lately later this month.  It is sad because I used to post Monday-Friday and lately it has been good if I get 3 posts up in a week.  So now my goal is 4 times a week.  I have so many projects waiting to be written about and I have so many things to write about in general.  So I hope to be able to knock some of them out this month!  Wish me luck.  This is the goal that I think will be the hardest for me.


Monthly Challenge & Giveaway



Challenge:  Choose any of these options:
  • Make a goal to finish a project that has been on your work to do list.  
  • If you have been wanting to ask for a raise at work then do some research and talk to your boss (the research helps back up your case). 
  • If you are a stay at home mom (AWESOME!) then check something off your to do list this month that has been nagging you for awhile.  I know moms have a list a mile long so pick the most nagging task and check it off this month.  Baby steps can take you there.  
  • Set a work schedule for yourself and stick to it.  Schedules can make life so much more easy and efficient.  (this can work for stay at home moms too)

Prize:

work, happiness, happy
Copy of The 4-Hour Workweek

Ok.  I know I told you last month that not all of the months will be books, but I couldn't resist having this book be the giveaway this month.  It goes PERFECTLY with the work theme and it has some awesome ideas, thoughts, and inspiration.  Next month the giveaway will not be a book.  I already have it planned out.  


To enter, you can fill out the Rafflecopter below or you can email your submissions to support@shambray.com by writing a short email stating which option you choose above.  I hope you can notice a difference in your work life by participating in this challenge. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Feb 27, 2015

Saint Patrick's Day Canvas


Do you like decorating for St. Patrick's day?  I do, because I like decorating for any holiday.  It makes my house feel festive and fun.  I do not go over board because it is so close to Easter, but I still put decorations up.  

This year I added one more decoration item.  Remember my post about my Valentine's Day decorations?  Well for one of the decorations I made a Valentines day canvas.  It was so easy that I thought I would make one for St Patrick's day.  

I followed the same steps, but instead of painting the stripes black I painted them gold.  I LOVE gold these days so I knew I wanted gold on there.  Then instead of a red heart with red washi tape I used a green shamrock with green washi tape.  I switched up the words on the bottom too.  Also, I let the words bleed a little on the bottom.  I did not do that for the Valentines Day one.  (I wanted a different look for this one.)

It was so simple and I love the combination of green and gold.  Perfect for St Patrick's Day!  I will add this to my other items and spice of the space a bit.  

Another VERY QUICK decor item I do every St Patrick's Day is put split green peas in a vase and place a white candle on top of the peas (same vase and candle that I used in the post above with conversation hearts).  I love it because it adds something else and costs so little and takes such little time.  That is my kind of decorating when life is crazy.  

This year I am going to do some fun things for my daughter.  She loves anything out of the ordinary so it doesn't take much.  Here are my plans for this year:
  • Giving her Lucky Charms to eat on St. Patrick's Day (she loves them, but we hardly ever give them to her so it will be a treat)
  • Set a leprechaun trap
  • Leave green treasures and gold coins in her shoes
  • Give her a green bubble bath (she LOVES bubble baths) 

Do you have any fun St. Patrick's day decorations?  Do you have any fun St. Patrick's day traditions? 


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Feb 25, 2015

Stay Sane Cleaning Series Step 6: Daily Missions

cleaning, peaceful, daily missions

We are almost done with the daily tasks.  Only one more after this one!  Honestly, this one is my favorite daily task.  The reason why is because I see the most change with this one step.  It helps me feel like I get more done every day.  

When I say this one is done daily it is actually done Monday-Friday.  You get Saturday and Sunday off from this step.  The first thing that you need to do is follow Fly Lady.  You probably already started following once I started telling you how amazing that site is and how it has helped me have a clean house much easier than before.  

Daily missions is the next step in the series.  The reason why you want to follow her is because you will automatically have the daily missions sent to your email on Sunday.  That way you can plan your week out ahead of time and see what you will be doing that week.  

She has the weeks broken down into different zones.  Each week of the month you will work on a different area of your house.  I love this because that way you are cleaning every part of your house at least once during the month.  Not just cleaning it, but thoroughly cleaning it.  

This is how the zones are broken down with Fly Lady. 

Week 1: Front porch, entry area, and dining room
Week 2: Kitchen
Week 3: Main bathroom and another room
Week 4: Master bedroom 

This week we are on master bedroom.  Just to give you an idea of what the missions are, today's mission is to clean off the floors of our closet.  The missions come with a lot of ideas and tips as well.  Tomorrow's mission is tackling the nightstands.  

Do you want to know what I do a little differently?  I set my timer for 15 minutes.  I always do the mission on the day it is assigned.  If there is more to do when the timer goes off I leave it.  I tidy up so there isn't a bigger mess and I walk away.  However, if I have more time then I do something else until my timer goes off.  

I usually try and stay in the zone that I am working on for the full 15 minutes.  However, for example if I know that my daughter's closet needs some TLC on the same day the master room closet is being worked on then I will go and clean her's after I am finished with the master and if the timer has not gone off yet.  

That way I am cleaning the house for 15 minutes either way.  The only time I skip this is if I am not feeling well or I have a super busy day.  Either way I do the mission, but if it takes less than 15 minutes and my day is crazy then I might stop as soon as the mission is complete.  

You guys!  You need to be doing this.  I promise!  I know I say this on every step.  That is why I am telling you this though.  It is to help you and I promise in no time you will see and notice a difference.  Also, you won't be killing yourself while trying to do it.  

Let me know what you think once you follow along for a bit.  It is so awesome! 

daily missions, cleaning

Check out the other steps in this series:



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Feb 24, 2015

Date Night Attire


This post is written by fashion contributor, Cami.

Butterflies in your stomach, trying to look flawless, but not trying too hard, taking a minute to Facebook-stalk and Google the guy…oh dating in 2015. 

I think the cardinal rule of date-night outfits is comfort.  Now let me clarify, because my understanding of “comfort” and yours may be different – I say “comfort” in the sense that you need to feel confident, you need to feel like you look good, and you should not spend the night tugging and readjusting your clothes.  Dating – especially if you are single – is already stressful enough without throwing in an outfit that requires constant worry or thought – you should be able to feel like you’re looking good and can conquer the world.  For those of you who are married, you should look at “date night” as a time to dress up and have time for just the two of you – it should be set aside and special, it should be a break from the routine.

Feb 16, 2015

Date Night Makeup


This post is written by Danielle, beauty/makeup contributor!

Getting dressed up and doing my makeup for a date night has always been on of my favorite things to do. But lately I've been very light on my makeup wear so I've had to make some adjustments to my routines. I've come up with the perfect date night make that still looks great but is also easy, quick and light. 

Feb 13, 2015

Stay Sane Cleaning Series Step 5: Clothes


I know many of you are going to think the next step is silly to have on my cleaning schedule, but I do have it on there.  I put it on there to make sure it gets done daily.  It is something that needs to be checked off daily. 

Feb 10, 2015

Last minute Valentine idea

Quick and Easy Last Minute Valentines

If you are trying to put something together last minute for a valentine idea then I have you covered. This is super simple, but still really cute.  I did it with my daughter for her dance class and we had a fun time doing it together.  

Go gather all your supplies and have fun with yourself, your friends, or your kids.  It is so simple your could make some themselves.  I love to see what kids come up with.  

Feb 9, 2015

5 Date Night Hairstyles

This post is written by beauty/hair contributor, Laura!  
PS  Laura graduated since she last posted!  Way to go Laura!

Awe, yes. A time to celebrate love! I personally LOVE Valentine's Day! I even loved it when I was single. ;)  Love in all it's forms is beautiful and powerful. It changes people. Whether it's between spouses, siblings, parent and child, or any other relationships. I think love is amazing and it deserves to be celebrated!

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