Box Swap Reveal

Y’all! This was my first ever box swap and I absolutely loved it. Chasin’ Mason, The Chronicles of We and Sweet Turtle Soup organized the big ordeal and I couldn’t wait to sign up. This year was my first Mother’s Day without any kids still living with us, so I was not looking forward to it. And, then, like a bright and shiny light, I read about this box swap and I jumped at the chance to get matched up with two partners; one to give a gift to, one to get a gift from.

When I received the email from the organizers saying I was partnered with Stephanie Cox of WifeMommyMe fame, I was surprised at the coincidence, since we are, in fact, friends IRL. The punchline is that she knows me well enough to know about my aversion to shipping things, and reveled in my necessity to 1. hit a deadline and 2. visit the post office.

I had a blast making Stephanie some fun running accessories to support her new hobby in style. You can check out her post about her exchange here.

When it came to my second partner, I was matched up with Johanna from the Sirois Family Blog. I was excited to get my questionnairre from Johanna and was really looking forward to what she put together for me, and she didn’t disappoint. She embraced my love for rainbows and shared with me some of her favorite things as well. All bases are covered with a Starbucks gift card, tea packets, Godiva chocolate bar, eos lip balm and hand lotion and a rainbow of nail polilsh and post-it notes (which I love) all beautifully packaged in colorful tissue. It is always great to get mail and I can’t wait to do another exchange. Thanks again to my partner, Johanna.
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A Surprise Gift For Him That He’ll Never Forget (And Won’t Cost A Dime)

Surprise Gift for Him

Surprise Gift For Him

For my husband’s 30th birthday I sent him on a treasure hunt that took him on a journey from his childhood home, to where he played midget football, to where we had our first date and beyond. It was a gift that my husband, who is not an overly-sentimental man, still talks about years later. He even saved the riddles through two moves.

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When you set out to plan a treasure hunt like this, the first thing you need to do is come up with your landmarks. You want to shoot for between 5 and 10 locations. Your final number will depend on two factors: 1. the distance between your locations and 2. the number of people willing to help you. We’ll talk more about this later.

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Some suggestions for points of interest to include in your treasure hunt.

  1. Where he was born
  2. His elementary school
  3. Sports fields
  4. His childhood home
  5. His first apartment
  6. Where you had your first date
  7. Your church
  8. A landmark from one of those stories he tells all the time
    (I included the bus stop where he was dropped off by mistake in Kindergarten)
  9. His place of employment
  10. Favorite restaurant

You get the idea, right?

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Once you have a handle on the landmarks, I suggest you map them out. Drop a map pin (Google Maps is a good tool to use) in each location and calculate the route you will send him on. The order of the clues will determine the path he takes. For example, I started by giving him an envelope at home that held his first clue.

Happy 30th Birthday! Time for a trip down memory lane. Go to the place where you entered the world wearing your birthday suit.

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Treasure Hunt Clues

His first clue took him to the hospital where he was born. So, he drove to the hospital. Now, here’s where your helpers come in. I arranged to have his mom waiting there in the parking lot with an envelope that held his next clue.

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His next clue read:

It was a happy, happy birthday for me the night I met you, here.

Since we met during a party at his best friend’s apartment, I arranged for that same friend to be waiting for him outside the old apartment with the next clue.

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The clues continued bouncing him around from one happy memory to another where he was greeted by friends and family each presenting him with another envelope. Another option would be to have someone who works at a given location agree to deliver your clue for you. This is a great alternative for anyone living away from family.

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His final clue was delivered by a mutual friend. It directed him to a favorite restaurant of ours. Here, I gathered all the helpers, friends and family for a big celebratory surprise dinner. The night was full of funny stories and shared experiences. While we met at a restaurant, we could have just as easily met back at our place for a home-cooked meal.

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This is such a great, free and thoughtful gift to give to anyone you love. They are guaranteed to remember it for a lifetime. Who would you create a treasure hunt for?

Orange: Obnoxious Hue or the New Black?

All About Orange

Orange is the combination of red and yellow. Red denotes energy and yellow signifies happiness. So, when you put the two together, you get enthusiasm, joy, creativity, change, happiness and most importantly fun.

Studies show that orange can create physical feelings like increased hunger, heightened sense of activity, increased socialization, boost in aspiration, stimulated mental activity, increased oxygen supply to the brain, increased contentment, and enhanced assurance. Orange also helps with decision making, enhances happiness, confidence, and understanding.

The Personality of Orange Lovers

According to thelandofcolor.com:

If your favorite color is orange…”the party is wherever you are. Forever the optimist, you fully expect something wonderful is about to happen. You’ve perfected being present, living in the moment, and focusing on what and who is in front of you.

Orange personalities are described as social animals, social butterflies, and mediators. A problem solver at heart, you channel your high energy to inspire and influence others. Team building is a natural skill because others are drawn to your zest for life and even-keeled positivity.

Flying by the seat of your pants usually works out well for you. No matter what life throws your way, you don’t fold under pressure or cave to panic. Rather you take it in stride because -surely- something wonderful is about to happen after all.”

If your favorite color is orange, the party is wherever you are. Click To Tweet

Decorating with Orange

You may not be ready to paint an entire room orange, but orange makes quite an accent. Check out these fantastic color pallets featuring shades of orange from tangerine to burnt orange. Bring some orange into your world with paint, lamps, rugs or artwork.

Pallet from blog.mypartydesign.com Image from ninbra.tumblr.com
Pallet from blog.mypartydesign.com Image from ninbra.tumblr.com

 

From design-seeds.com
Orange home décor from popsugar.com
Orange home décor from popsugar.com – shopping links on original post.
Mr. Smith chair from Horchow.com

Orange in Business

Check out this great infographic from theultralinx.com that shows what different colors (including orange of course) mean for your business. Spoiler alert: Orange is popular in Technology and Healthcare.

True Colors Infographic from theultralinx.com
True Colors Infographic from theultralinx.com

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Now you know just about everything there is to know about orange (not really). It’s been my favorite color for years now, it brings so much happiness to a space. And it’s a great color in the craft room.

So, how do you feel about orange? Love it or hate it? Let us know in the comments.

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What Kind of Rainbow Are You? Quiz

What kind of rainbow quiz

What Kind of Rainbow Are You?

Remember when we were young and we poured over YM and Seventeen Magazine? Well I do. My favorite part of those magazines were the quizzes. You could find out all sorts of things, like: “Are you a fling or forever kind of girl?”, “Are you a good kisser?” or “Are you best friend material?” In honor of those innocent magazine quizzes of the past, I have assembled this quick little quiz that will tell you what kind of rainbow you are. You didn’t know there was more than one kind of rainbow? Well, there are 6 distinct types of rainbows (according to me, anyway). Answer these six questions, and find your rainbow in the answer key. Have fun and be sure to let us know what kind of rainbow you are in the comments.

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Your life could be described as:
What color would your dream bedroom be?
How do you feel about glitter?
What’s in your “most played” list?
Next up in your Netflix queue?
Which of these appeals most to your sweet tooth?

Be sure to click Submit Quiz to see your results!



Why We Love Austin, Texas – Bluebonnets

We’ve been living in Austin, Texas for just about 10 years now. There are so many things I love about this place, but one of the more special things about where we live is springtime and the bluebonnets. Bluebonnets are the state flower of Texas in case you didn’t know.

Texas Bluebonnets

It’s a tradition to take your kids to a big field of bluebonnets and plop them down in the middle and take their pictures. Just make sure you don’t plop them down on a bee or snake. Yikers! This one almost got me.

Texas Bluebonnets

The bluebonnet is to Texas what the shamrock is to Ireland, the cherry blossom to Japan, the lily to France, the rose to England, and the tulip to Holland.

Jack Maguire – Historian

Texas Bluebonnets

Don’t have any kids? Plop yourself down in the bluebonnets, make your husband take your picture, and don’t sit on a bee or a snake.

Then thank your lucky stars that you’re in Texas!

Texas Bluebonnets

What are your favorite signs of spring?

Colorful Business: Plum Natural Nail Spa in Austin, Texas

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Like no other “nail place” you’ve ever been. Whether you visit Plum Natural Nail Spa to relax and enjoy a short break from your busy life, a Saturday of pampering with your girlfriends, or just because you can’t reach your toes to paint them yourself anymore (I have a big head and little arms), the ladies at Plum ensure your experience is exceptional.

plum pedicures

Before I found Plum, I would wander into the closest nail shop with availability and just accept that the service was just like every other place. Just churn and burn. I also assumed hygiene was a priority for everyone. What I discovered was: Plum is doing it how it should be done.

a rainbow of nailpolish

Did I mention Plum is beautifully decorated too? The focal walls are done in a deep plum with surrounding walls painted a relaxing greige and bright white trim. The lighting fixtures are modern and bright and their luxurious massage chairs are so, so comfy. A rainbow of nail polish seems to go on forever. Their products are well curated and look just as amazing as they smell. Try scents like: Manuka Honey & Citrus and Thai Coconut Lemongrass. Uh-mazing.

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So far, my services have included numerous manicures and relaxing pedicures complete with hot towels, massages, sugar scrubs and nail art, facials, waxing, and lash tinting. I’ve never had a bad experience at Plum. Not once!

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Plum Natural Nail Spa is located at the Trails at 620 Shopping Center in Austin, Texas. Check out Plum’s website to make appointments or check for specials, or just call them at: 512-291-3147.

You should stop by. Tell them Kristen sent you!

Think You’re the Master of Movie Quotes? Take this Quiz

 

Can you beat her score?

The Movie Quote Master!

Want to know a secret? Whenever I work a movie quote into a post on this blog, I’ll call attention to it by changing the color, so keep a look out. If you want to guess what movie I’m quoting, just put it in the comments. I’ll let you know if you’re right. But for now, test your movie memory by taking this Master Level Quiz. Let me know how you did in the comments. Answers are below.

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ANSWERS:

1.  The Princess Bride
2.  Dogeball
3.  Rocky
4.  Forrest Gump
5.  Forgetting Sarah Marshall
6.  Anchorman
7.  40 Year Old Virgin
8.  Role Models
9.  Clueless
10. Bridget Jones’ Diary
11. Grease
12. A Knight’s Tale
13. Ghostbusters
14. Caddyshack
15. Mean Girls
16. Stripes
17. Superbad
18. Zombieland
19. Love Actually
20. Pitch Perfect