Easy Steps for Spreading Cheer

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It’s time to ring in the season with some joy and color. No matter how you celebrate the holidays, it’s important to do what you can to spread some cheer around your community. I wanted to do something special, so I decided to #MoveFor prettying up some sidewalks around town with some holiday inspired designs and sayings. Hopefully when people see these, they’ll pause, smile, take pictures or simply feel inspired to do something creative themselves.

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Of course, all this running around town meant I needed to feel comfortable. I’m always on the hunt for the perfect sneaker, so I can move around the way I need to and still look stylish and not have to worry about spending all day in the same shoes. I was so excited when Easy Spirit reached out to partner with me for this project because it was the perfect pair of shoes for the excursion– especially because you all know how I feel about shoefies! If you would like to see how the project turned out and how to do something like it in your own community, keep reading for easy steps!

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Step One: Figure out what you’re going to write! You could just think about what messages you would like to stumble upon. Of course the internet is also the place to go for this. If you need a good place to start, check out my Word board on Pinterest for inspiring quotes and thoughts.

Step Two: Decide where to write. Pick out places in your town that people will see and that would benefit from the decoration. I chose a couple sidewalks near a school.

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Step Three: Go and do it! This can be a solo adventure or a trip out on the town with your tribe. Be sure to wear comfy shoes!

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Step Four: Document your process and handiwork.

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I loved doing this project because it’s focused on what my work is all about: bringing a little extra joy and sunshine into the lives of others using art and positivity. Try chalk lettering around your town with uplifting quotes as a "gift" to everyone. What will you do to lift the spirits of others this season?


This post is in collaboration with
Easy Spirit, all ideas and opinions are my own. As always, my creative partners and I appreciate the support.

Sharing my story

Fiercely Fearless with Olay

Choose joy! Those two words sound so easy, right? I firmly believe that looking on the brightest side of life is a choice you’ll never regret. That doesn’t make things any less difficult when facing life’s challenges. Most people who know me really well would say that I am more of an optimist than a pessimist. And it's true - I am. But I haven't always been this way. I have gone through phases in my life when I encountered negativity and bad stuff. Everyone has. The true mark of inner strength is being able to face your obstacles and choose happiness anyway. It’s definitely easier said than done on some days. When I am struggling or feeling down, I intentionally have to carve out time to pause and replace those negative thoughts with positive ones.

When I first moved to Los Angeles when I was 25, I had no idea what kind of crazy amazing journey was ahead of me. A company had relocated me from Atlanta. I was excited to get to work in a new place, while keeping the little company that I started when I was 21 on the side. I dreamed of living as close to the beach as possible. The path seemed perfectly paved until just a week after my arrival, I got a call that pivoted my life in a way that was most unexpected. My boss told me that I was going to be let go if I chose to keep Amy Tangerine on the side. I had to choose either the company I created or the job that had moved me to LA. I was devastated. I had just bought a brand new car, I didn’t have a place to live and and now I was out of a job. I called my dad and he said “You’re lost in the right place.” Those words comforted me and gave me hope. I wouldn’t have made the big move on my own and here is where I was going to thrive.

Plans shift and change and yet through it all, I held onto believing in myself, maintaining a positive mindset and doing what I love most— making things. Challenges and struggles are opportunities for tremendous growth. We all have a story to tell, we all have unique paths to take. When you find yourself at a crossroads in life and you feel out of balance, perhaps you’ll find comfort and guidance in seeking harmony instead of balance. I created an acronym from the word, and I call it the Harmony Principle:

Fiercely Fearless

"There is nothing more beautiful than a woman on a mission." -quote from this inspiring video. I think this phrase is so important because so often as women I think it is easy to forget how true it is. That's why I so enjoyed watching other fearless females who give a sneak peak into overcoming their everyday lives and challenges through the power of Olay. See how pilots face anything during their day. I’m grateful to share my story too in a video on my channel. Just as I overcame my fears and adversity, I am proud to stand with Tristan and all of the other fearless females throughout the world! So who wants to join me on this Harmony journey? Your permission has been granted to live your best creative life and feel fearless to rise above and to be the best version of yourself each and every day. I am so inspired by your comments in the YouTube video already. Thank you!!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Olay. The opinions and text are all mine.

Embrace the beauty that surrounds you. Do you have a word or guiding principle that helps you?

3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME

3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME

This post was sponsored by BISSELL, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Whether you're meticulously neat or carefree and messy, the time always comes to tidy up! So, I'm sharing a list of three ways to keep your home just a little bit cleaner. Because of our three Jacks (my two Jack Russell terriers, Buster and Bamboo and my son, Jack), my house can get a little messy at times. That's one of the many reasons I'm so happy to partner with BISSELL for this post.

Seven years ago, Cathy Bissell founded BISSELL Pet Foundation. The foundation's mission is to keep animals out of shelters in a number of ways including adoption, foster care, microchipping and so much more. Every time someone buys a BISSELL Crosswave Pet Pro® and registers their device at www.bissell.com, BISSELL donates $10 to the foundation to help each and every pet find a home! We have been using Crosswave Pet Pro in our home and you can check out the video on my YouTube channel to see it in action. Having clean floors is just one of the many things that help me feel grounded and happy in my home.

LEGO SHELVES!

Here are the 3 tips:

1. Bring in the joy - There are so many ways to organize your belongings to help your living space look orderly, harmonious, and peaceful. Because our home is decorated with neutrals and accented with bright pops of color, one of my staple organization tips is to place your most vibrant items in rainbow order: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet. We use this method on everything from my personal library to Jack’s favorite toys and legos. Of course, if something isn’t exactly the right color, I try to find the best-looking place for it. I promise, it looks good even if you have a mauve thrown in next to the indigos! It’s not about perfection, just about bringing in a little order and good vibes.

3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME

2. Work smarter, not harder - I’m a small business owner and a mom— which means my to-do list always has something on it. I rely on multi-use products and tools to get the most out of my time while I’m cleaning. A great example of this is BISSELL’s CrossWave Pet Pro because it vacuums and washes the floor simultaneously—both hard floors and area rugs. It cleans wet and dry messes, acting as a mop and vacuum all in one sleek package. Whether it’s paw prints, tiny shoe prints or the little grey and white hairs that seem to get everywhere, my floors see a lot of traffic on a daily basis. CrossWave Pet Pro has a specialized cleaning formula with a light, clean scent. Best of all, it's earth-friendly and safe around pets and kids when used as directed. There are no heavy metals, phosphates or dyes. We use it all throughout our home and the scent leaves our place smelling crisp and fresh. It’s so nice to have a tool that can multitask just like I do!

3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME
3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME

3. Include the little ones - I don’t think cleaning is anyone’s favorite activity, but there are ways to make it fun and enjoyable for the whole family. Jack is usually an eager helper when it comes to chores. Giving him a small, manageable task helps keep him engaged and learn about responsibility. It also helps me keep things in perspective. Yes, a messy house feels chaotic and unpleasant sometimes and cleaning can be stressful. But the loved ones who make the messes are a huge and valuable part of my life and I never ever want to lose sight of that truth.

3 TIPS FOR A TIDY, HAPPY HOME

Which of the three tips are you most excited to try out in your home? Be sure to share any of your tried and true tips and tricks for a tidy living space in the comments below!

Racing to summer - Jack's brand new bike!

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In honor of National Bike Month, my friends at Dynacraft sent Jack his very first bike! I remember my first bike and it was a red Schwinn that my parents said at the time was more expensive than a lot of the things they owned. I still have fond memories of riding my bike to so many places in Wilmette, IL and was so happy once I got the training wheels off when I was five. I felt similar joy when I got a new bike when Jack was a baby - these photos just melt me.

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Jack got this awesome 16" Hot Wheels Bike with a special "Rev Grip" that makes it look, sound, and feel like a real motorbike! I wish I had captured Jack's reaction after it was put together because it was truly priceless. He now wants to take it for a spin every single day. The steel BMX frame and all-terrain tires help young riders race through all types of road conditions safely & smoothly, and make for hours of biking fun! We took it for a spin at the beach and I was so grateful to have Stephanie from Ographr in tow to capture the smiles.

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The Ographr app makes it so easy to find and book affordable, professional, vetted photographers in a flash. It's been my go-to lately and it's been wonderful having such a great resource at my fingertips.

Thanks Dynacraft for the awesome 16" Hot Wheels Bike - we love it!

4 Ways To Pack Light & Travel Like A Pro

4 Ways To Pack Light & Travel Like A Pro

Life’s a trip... and when you’re traveling you don’t always have the luxury of checking a suitcase! Although packing light can feel a little limiting, it actually gives you a ton of freedom. You won’t be tied to a heavy bag, you won’t have to endure long check-in lines & you can forget about dealing with that post-flight waiting game at the luggage carousel.  Below are some helpful tips that will make your adventures breezy, comfortable & fabulous!

Roll with it!

When it comes down to it - folding your clothing physically takes up WAY too much space. The trick is to roll everything from your jeans to your t-shirts into tight & neat bundles. This technique will help maximize space while still keeping everything super organized. The one thing you need to remember is to avoid clothing that wrinkles easily. While most hotels provide irons - this added step can be kind of annoying & eats away at precious vacation time!

Get Back to Basics

2018's chicest look is, "model off duty." This style is clean & simple. Just stick to great fitting basics like solid color t-shirts, that perfect pair of jeans, a tailored moto jacket, neutral sneakers & of course a classic LBD. The great thing about packing these basic pieces is that you can mix & match them - the outfit possibilities are endless. For a day at the museum, you can wear a white tee under the little black dress & finish it off with the sneakers! For a nice dinner on the town do the dress solo with the jacket thrown over your shoulders - instant perfection!

Utilize Space

Say you’re going to the mountains and you want to bring your hiking shoes! Although these kicks take up a little more room than you’d like - make them functional! Stuff the interior of the shoe with socks & underwear! It’s a great way to keep things organized & take advantage of available suitcase space!

I.C.E.

Let's be honest: when you visit a new place you're gonna wanna shop. Between local crafts & bringing home souvenirs, there's so much to buy & so little room to pack it all up in. This is where your I.C.E (in case of emergency) tote comes in handy! This collapsible bag is made of squishy fabric, therefore, can be folded into a tiny square. Not only is it great to use for long adventure days, but if you end up buying more than your carry-on can handle just open up this lifesaver, and throw it over your shoulder. This fashionable purse puts the fun in functional.

Photography by  LISH Creative

Photography by LISH Creative

There you have it... some solid tips on how to get the most out of packing light! In closing remember this - while it's nice to have the perfect travel outfits & accessories - the most valuable things on your voyage are the memories being made. Breathe it in!

This post is sponsored by Alaska Airlines. All opinions and experiences I mentioned are my own. My creative partners and I really appreciate your continued support! 

With over 90 daily nonstop flights within the state of California at super low fares, I had no problem zipping up to San Francisco for the HEYMAMA San Francisco launch. You can read more of my favorite travel tips on heymama.