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Quotes for DIY Bookmarks

Saturday, May 14, 2016
This Mother's Day all the main ladies in my life were gifted homemade bookmarks complete with beaded tassels and a quote from the Bible about the value of women (Proverbs 31:10). The intent was to encourage my women to read and learn as well as just let them know how amazing I think they are. Thoughtful gifts are kind of my favorite thing. 

Well, Mother's Day passed and I got to thinking about all the possibilities with this bookmark idea. Personalized bookmarks would be a hit for any special person in your life. After gathering up some Pinspiration, I chose 4 words of wisdom and used them in an attempt at graphic design to motivate you and yours to keep reading, learning, and being cool too!

"It's not just a daydream if you decide to make it your life."



"The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step...so watch your step." - Jeffrey R. Holland



"Work hard & be nice to people."



"Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies." Proverbs 31:10 



The bookmarks were really easy and inexpensive to make. I designed the image using PicMonkey. Then I printed and laminated them at my local UPS store. A few hole punches, some embroidery floss, and a couple glass beads later and we were in business. Even after making 9 of them I spent less than $25! And there was still one to spare for myself. I'm no graphic designer, but I think these came out pretty fun!

Pin this post to print your favorite bookmark later when you're ready to be reminded to keep being awesome. Or go make your own! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

Top "Make It Again" Recipes I Got from Pinterest

Saturday, April 23, 2016
Practically everything I know about cooking comes courtesy of the Food Network. I know I'm not alone. (We need a Food Network show about that!) I am 99% sure that I've been watching the Food Network since it premiered in 1991 when I was at the very conscious age of approximately two. Early shows like Two Fat Ladies and chefs like Sarah Moulton were part of my television line up, right along with Power Rangers and Sailor Moon. For a long time I aspired to be a famous chef and restaurant owner. When the Disney Channel Original Movie Eddie's Million Dollar Cook Off premiered with celebrity chef Bobby Flay I felt part of a special club because I knew who that was! You could find me in cooking clubs after school and baking competitions at my grandmother's church picnics. I almost opted for technical school to pursue culinary arts when I entered my junior year of high school. In the end I chose the business route, which didn't fair well. Still, I have always been interested in food.

Lately, though, there hasn't been as much time or my own space to make in. Living with my parents has its perks, but it can also be limiting when you have to share the kitchen with about six other people. Pinterest has now become a significant part of my culinary application, allowing me to simultaneously research and hoard my favorite recipes, even if I can't actually prepare them. Because of limited time and space, I have to make sure my recipes are picky-eater friendly and will always turn out right. Today I'm dishing out some of my favorite recipes from the internet that are on my menu's regular rotation.

Breakfast
This recipe makes my life. It's cake in the microwave! I have it for breakfast about 3 times a month. Not an applesauce fan? Swap it out for equal amounts (2 Tablespoons each) of your favorite instant oatmeal and hot water. From Heather Likes Food

Breakfast Enchiladas
Breakfast for dinner happens a lot when it is Spencer's and my turn to cook dinner because it's fun and ridiculously simple for those with a tight budget. Sadly, pancakes and bacon are only exciting so many times... After a while you need something interesting. Enter these breakfast enchiladas. Chances are you have everything you need already. The chefs recommend refrigerating overnight before baking, but you can totally cook day (or night) of. From Inspired Taste

Lunch
Hey this one is actually from Food Network! My mouth is watering right now just thinking about this. I prefer nuts (pecans, walnuts) to the veggies in this recipe, but to be honest all you really need is the fried chicken and cayenne. SO GOOD. Seriously. I love this recipe so much I've pinned it twice! From Damaris Phillips (Southern at Heart)

Dinner

Man Pleasin' Chicken
The appropriately named Man Pleasin' Chicken has a unique sauce that is out of this world! If you don't have fresh rosemary, no worries. Add a little less than the recipe calls for of crushed up dried rosemary and you're good to go. Also, make sure you're getting real maple syrup and not maple-flavored syrup. From Witty In the City

Fish & Chips
Beer-battered Fish & Chips without the beer!? Yes! Hashtag Mormon Life. This recipe offers the insanely helpful option of using soda water in place of the beer. The batter is perfect, leaving the fish crispy and just as tasty. Now that I know I will never EVER look back. From RockRecipes.com
Take out that random pasta maker and put some effort into Homemade Spinach Pasta. This recipe requires some muscle but is totally worth it. Reward your hard work with double topping of your favorite store-bought red AND white sauces. You'll have Italy in the palm of your hand. From Hubpages

Thoroughly diggin' on Asian-inspired food right now. Bonus if it's quick and simple. Enter this P.F. Chang's copycat recipe for Chicken Lettuce Wraps which uses ground chicken. It's a great quick recipe if you're at the grocery store for dinner but don't want frozen pizza (again). From Damn Delicious <<< P.S. I hang out on her site a lot.

Dessert

Nothing like the perfect dessert: classy, simple, and still looks like you slaved all day. These Cranberry Tea Cookies fit the bill perfectly. They are a perfect potluck or new neighbor gift. Or eat the whole batch yourself. I won't judge. From Lisa Is Bossy

Another perfect dessert recipe that meets my criteria is this one for Mini Cheesecake Cupcakes. I like to go the semi-homemade route (if you couldn't tell) by making the cheesecakes from a box recipe then topping with homemade caramel and, of course, sea salt. Or switch it up with homemade cheesecake and pre-made sauce. Either way they'll always be a hit. From Cooking Classy

Well, if I were clever there would have been pictures of me having actually made these. I was too busy eating them. Sorry not sorry. I guess you'll just have to go make them for yourself. Eat hearty, my friends!

Situations for a Motivational Playlist

Saturday, February 27, 2016
Motivation is a word with a good amount of meaning. We use it to describe a need as well as a state of being. One could even say it is a spectrum of sorts. At times we can feel ultra-motivated to accomplish all the things. Other times we need a little nudge to get through our to do list. And sometimes we are the ones doing the motivating. We may need to be spurred on in the moment or sustained through to the end. For all these reasons, a playlist of motivational songs should include songs that are dance worthy as well as some sing along faves to help get the good vibes flowing no matter your need. We all need a jump start every now and then.

When you want to celebrate a win
This playlist was created originally for a good day dance party. The year 2016 had come and I had been writing for an entire year. That was a huge accomplishment for me. I wanted to celebrate! And I wanted to keep the momentum. A solid punch dance can have a lasting impact. Trust me, I know from experience. (Two and a half years and counting!)

When you actually need to get started
Even when we are excited about something, taking the first step can be tough. Human nature is to assume we aren't capable or good enough to accomplish our goals. I've never heard it better described than as the "Natural Man," meaning left to our own limited understanding of our abilities, we are afraid to try. I like to think we have more support out there in the universe that is rooting for us. A good song can help us to feel those thumbs up and we can get a move on.

When you have to finish strong
Let's say you're working, but you are starting to run out of steam. You can't quit now! Take a break long enough to replenish your drink of choice, grab a snack, and start your motivational playlist. After you've revived yourself, press on, full steam ahead.

When you or someone you love could use a bit of optimism
Keep moving forward. We see it, we hear it, we know it's the right thing to do. But the future can be cloudy and the present can feel like moving through a pool full of honey. As a musician I can honestly say that writers work hard to share words of hope and positivity through song. The message is important. I like to imagine that others are singing directly to me and that people who hear my music feel the same about my words. Use your playlist when you need to hear those messages of you are valuable, you are important, and you have much to give.




As you can see, my list includes mostly rock jams that I can tap my toes to and keep the energy up. You can bookmark my playlist on Spotify using this link. Good luck with whatever you're needing to accomplish today. Keep working and you'll have everything worth getting!

Updated 10.10.2017

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