While browsing through save the date ideas a couple of years ago, I found a unique approach that I instantly fell in love with.
I have been obsessed with reading from the moment I learned how, and although I didn’t want a literary-themed wedding, my husband and I found a lot of creative ways to incorporate my passion into the event.
The first way was by having a bookmark as our save the date!
got so many compliments on our save the date; people loved that it had
personal meaning, but also that it was something they hadn’t seen before
and could actually use.
decided to put together a list of other creative save the date ideas,
for those who are interested in doing something a little different.
Here’s the list of unique and functional save the dates!
Bookmark This is my very own save the date! We used one of the pictures from our engagement photo shoot. As I mentioned, we got a lot of compliments on these and people did actually use them while reading. They were made by RaspberryCreative on Etsy, who has a ton of beautiful wedding stuff in her shop! We also got door hangers for our wedding hotel made by her.
Concert or event ticket If you or your spouse are big music or sports fans, this could be a great option for you. I’ve seen this done a few different ways, all of which were awesome. This not only allows you to add some personality to your save the dates, it makes for a great keepsake afterwards. The example above can be found here on Etsy.
Boarding pass/luggage tag These are perfect for those interested in travel or for an actual destination wedding. My cousin and his wife did something similar leading up to their wedding in Puerto Rico and I still remember it years later because I found it so clever. A boarding pass can be very cute, like this one from Etsy, shown above. A luggage tag is also a great option and, depending on the type you send, your guests can use it when they travel!
Confetti pouch Get the celebration started a little early by sending your guests a mini bag full of confetti! These are so fun and adorable, and will likely make everyone on your guest list smile (as long as you ensure the pouch is sealed shut before sending them the bag, haha). Here is the link to the example shown above.
Scratch off This is another fun one that your guests can interact with. Have your actual date be revealed after they scratch off the spots on their save the date card! This can be tied into a theme or stand on its own, but either way it’s something for your guests (and both of you) to remember. Example from above is here.
I love all of the ideas above, and I really love that my husband and I decided to think a little outside the box with our save the date.
It set the tone for our wedding early on; not in the fact that our wedding was book-themed, but that it was a perfect representation of who we are as both individuals and a couple.
I hope you find inspiration in these ideas, and that you’ll share your own wedding ideas or plans with me!
I love weddings and would be thrilled to hear about your own personal experiences, past or present, in the comments below.
The first time I attended the Warped Tour, I was 15 years old and hadn’t gone to many concerts.
Music (especially music with meaningful lyrics) has always been a huge part of my life, but it wasn’t until high school that I discovered the magic of live music and, along with it, the magic of Warped Tour.
For those who are unfamiliar, Warped Tour is a two-day concert stacked with the most popular bands in rock, punk, emo, screamo, etc. They tour around the country every summer; or, at least they did until 2018.
Last summer was the final full cross-country tour, and this year they had an anniversary show in just three cities, celebrating their 25-year run.
I was lucky enough that one of those cities was close by, and so this past weekend I had the privilege of attending my fifth and final Warped Tour.
When I was a teenager, I loved this show because I got to see all of my favorite bands in one place, and I got to spend the entire day running around between stages, vendor stands, and all of the other cool activities they had there.
I also loved it because it was one of the only places that I truly felt like myself.
I might’ve mentioned this in previous posts, but I didn’t have a great relationship with myself as I was growing up.
I did enjoy high school and have plenty of friends, but my taste in music, art, clothing, and a lot of other things, was always just slightly off compared with what was trendy or popular at the time.
I didn’t mind that a lot of people thought my music preference was weird; I still found the lyrics meaningful and the instruments exciting.
One thing a lot of people don’t realize about hardcore or alternative music is that the lyrics are often very deep and poetic, and that has always been the main thing that made me feel at home while listening to it.
I think it’s safe to assume that every teenager has to deal with heartbreak, self-consciousness, and anxiety for one reason or another. As a very emotional person and an artist deep down, I was certainly no exception to this.
But when I was at Warped, I not only felt that I could truly be myself and be accepted for it, I saw so many other people outright celebrating whatever it was that made them unique.
I found companionship in absolute strangers as we both screamed out lyrics about loss and hardship right next to one another, knowing that we would never speak of it but that we both were clearly going through similar things.
I found encouragement and inspiration in so many of the band members who would hang out at their merch booths right in the middle of the venue, more than happy to engage in conversation with random fans such as myself.
I found joy in letting loose and dancing to the music, having my body thrown into the air and trusting that the sturdy hands of the crowd would catch me and keep me high above it all. Yes, I, a fashion blogger, am talking about my deep love for crowd surfing.
When I think about my teenage years, I almost always think of Warped Tour and the summer days I spent there. I think of the music that made me who I am; music that still makes up about 90% of my current iTunes library.
It’s so interesting how things like music, books, and movies can seamlessly connect our past to our present. All I have to do is put my phone on shuffle and chances are that an old Silverstein, Finch, or New Found Glory jam will bring me right back to being 17 again.
Those are the obvious reasons why this past weekend meant so much to me. But the most special part of the whole weekend, and the part I hadn’t thought about too much beforehand, was getting to experience it with my husband.
Sometimes it’s freaky how similar Joe and I are. It’s no surprise that we had a lot of the same interests growing up, even though we didn’t meet until he was 24 and I was 25.
We were both equally pumped when we saw the lineup for the Warped Tour 25th Anniversary, and knew we had to make it happen.
I’ve said many times since we got engaged and then married how I wish I could go back in time and relive my teenage years with my husband by my side.
I know that we both had to have certain experiences and get further along in life before we could become the perfect match we are today, but I think of those times and how much I longed for true love and the right person to share it with, and I just wish 16-year-old Laura could have known how perfect of a guy she would actually find.
Revisiting one of my favorite teenage experiences with the love of my life was such a gift. There’s no other way I can describe it.
Standing in the crowds, feeling his arms around me as I listened to my old favorite songs live was something I never imagined doing, but even if I had I could never have known how wonderful it would be.
As we danced around to “I’d Do Anything” by Simple Plan on Saturday afternoon, I recalled hearing it play at a middle school dance but holding back from getting on the floor because I was too afraid what people would think of me.
When The Used played “I Caught Fire” on Sunday I thought of how it almost became our wedding song, but also of how, 15 years ago, I watched my crush play it on guitar for another girl and wondered if anyone would ever feel that way about me.
We ended our night rocking out with Blink-182 (sans Tom, plus Matt) and when “Going Away to College” started, all I could do was smile from ear to ear and think back to being 12 years old, sitting on top of the bunk bed I shared with my sister, and playing the song over and over, daydreaming about what true love actually felt like.
I always knew those songs would stay a part of my life, but I never thought I would get to listen to them knowing I had finally found everything they inspired me to search for.
For me, this weekend was a celebration of the music that helped me through tough times, that inspired me to be a better version of myself.
It was a tribute to some amazingly talented artists, and to being connected with 30,000 strangers, all head-banging their problems away in unison.
And, most importantly, it was look back at who I used to be, who I’ve become, and all that I was able to accomplish. It was my tangible, undeniable reward for never giving up on myself or my desire to find real love.
I will forever be grateful for all of the memories I made at Warped Tour, but especially for the ones of this past weekend.
These bands, their words, and the feelings they evoke in me will always be in my heart. And, most likely, blaring out of my car speakers. ❤ 🙂
I know I haven’t…but my husband and I have been trying to make progress little by little whenever we have a few hours on the weekend.
I’ve discovered a few cleaning tips, tricks, and products that can help make things easier for you, just as they have for us.
Check out my recommended cleaning hacks and cleaning products below, click the images to purchase, and don’t forget to leave your own suggestions in the comments! ❤
Reusable Dryer Sheets: You’ve probably got these guys stored wherever you do laundry already, but did you know they can be used for household cleaning after you use them in the dryer? Used dryer sheets don’t need to be thrown away; they can be used to clean off mirrors and other glass surfaces, coffee tables, and even the inside of your toilet (preferably not all with one dryer sheet…lol). This is a great hack because it’s likely something you’re already using and therefore doesn’t cost you anything extra. Cheap (or free) hacks are the best hacks, no?
Drill Scrub Brush: I kid you not, my husband actually bought a drill just so he could clean our bathroom floor with this scrub brush. But hey, don’t knock it. Not only was the process a bit more amusing for him, he got our bathroom floor (grout included) spotless by using this drill scrub method. The brushes themselves are pretty cheap. We’re going to try doing the shower walls with it next so I’ll keep you all updated.
Dish Soap for Stains: This is more of a clothes cleaning than house cleaning hack, but still applicable, in my option. Did you know that dish soap can get almost anything out of clothing? Spill some marinara sauce on your white sweater? Get a grease stain on a t-shirt you love? Swipe your shirt sleeve with mascara while trying to get ready at the crack of dawn? Next time you get a tricky substance on your clothing, sheets, or a towel, put it under warm water, add some dish soap, and rub gently. You’ll be amazed at how well this works and all of the different things it works for.
Scrub Mommy Sponges: My aunt gave me these for Christmas a few years ago and I haven’t used another sponge since. These sponges are durable and useful, with one tough (yet gentle enough not to scratch) scrubbing side and one smoother absorbent side. They are great for washing any type of dish, cleaning counters, and cleaning off appliances as well. Plus they come in cute smiley-face shapes.
Robot Vacuum: Sure, having a robot vacuum probably feels a little bit like cheating, but you can’t deny how convenient it is that these things exist. It’s not as necessary right now as I live in a two bedroom condo, but once I move into a full-size house I know I’m going to appreciate our robot vacuum immensely. I can have it rolling around on the floor cleaning up while I’m taking care of other household chores. These are a little on the pricier side, of course, but if you invest in a well-made one, I think it’s totally worth it.
One of my favorite things to do on weeknights is relax in my bed and binge watch some old TV shows.
Lately, my guilty pleasure has been old teen dramas ranging from the late 1990’s to the mid-late 200’s.
All of these are shows I’ve watched before (most of them multiple times) but I still find myself pulled into the drama and I love every minute of it.
I guess, with so much happening during the day, it’s nice to have my mind occupied by something else; plus, it’s a little nostalgic being reminded of the things that we thought were so important back when we were in high school. 😉
Here’s my ranking of 10 of the most popular teen dramas from the 90’s and 2000’s, plus which popular streaming services you can find them on.
10. The OC This is your typical California teen show, and was also my first exposure to Rachel Bilson, who is currently one of my favorite actresses! It’s a cute show about best friends, boys, and high school and is basically what you’d expect from the early 2000’s, but tapers off a little for me around the last two seasons. Without giving anything away, I’ll just say that some of the decisions of the show makers left me confused and focused on what I wished the ending could be, rather than what it was. You can currently stream episodes of The OC on Hulu!
9. Dawson’s Creek Ok, so I’m probably going to get grief about putting this one so low on my list, but I just never got into Dawson’s Creek the way a lot of other people did. It certainly had a cute love story and lots of great drama, but it couldn’t hold my interest as much as the other shows of its time for some reason. This one is also available to stream on Hulu.
8. Laguna Beach Dubbed “The Real OC,” Laguna Beach was a documentary-style show on MTV that followed a cast of real teenagers throughout their last couple years of high school. I honestly can’t tell you why every teenage girl was so obsessed with this show back in the day, but I still find myself drawn into the episodes whenever re-runs are on. This is another one that got weaker as the show went on, in my opinion. By Season 3, the original cast had all graduated and a new crop of students became the focus; that’s where I lost interest. All three seasons are currently available on MTV.
7. Greek This ABC Family (now, Freeform) show was about Greek life at college, and even though I didn’t participate in Greek life myself, I found this show really entertaining. There’s a great on-and-off love story woven throughout all of the seasons, and I found myself on the edge of my seat every step of the way for this couple. Overall, this show is really cute and I would definitely watch it again. This show is available on Freeform or Hulu.
6. Gilmore Girls This is another show that many other girls my age would probably put much higher on the list. For some reason, I just couldn’t get into Rory and Lorelai as much as everyone else (even though my sister’s old nickname for me was Lorelai). I did love how into reading Rory was, though, and there were a couple of juicy love stories in this show that caught my interest. I still haven’t, and probably won’t, watch the Netflix reboot. To help you get caught up for their new show, Netflix has all of the old Gilmore Girls seasons available (in addition to episodes of the reboot series).
5. Friday Night Lights This show makes me so happy and sad at the same time. I absolutely loved it, but I feel like it could’ve been even better if it wasn’t a victim to the writer’s strike that happened in 2007/2008. I loved all of the characters, the dramatic high school story, and the exciting football scenes. I have a soft spot for any show that combines sports and love stories; and yes, that is a bit of foreshadowing for what’s to come in the remaining four TV shows for this post. Getting back to Friday Night Lights, the only reason this show isn’t higher on the list is because I wanted more of it, and I felt that a lot of pieces abruptly cut off. You can watch all of Friday Night Lights on Hulu and select seasons on Amazon Prime.
4. Degrassi: The Next Generation In a way, I feel like I grew up with the characters of Degrassi. This series ran for ~14 years and it covered absolutely everything you could possibly have to deal with as a teen: breakups, friend drama, embarrassing moments, and several other more serious topics like rape, drug use, and STDs. It’s kind of odd to say, but I feel like I really learned a lot from this show, and all of the serious issues they included were done tastefully and successfully, in my opinion. I used to watch this with two of my best friends on Friday nights, so thinking back to the show also reminds me of happy, carefree times. This show will always be special to me. There is a Degrassi YouTube channel with most of the seasons available to watch.
3. 90210 This spinoff of the original Beverly Hills show is another one that drew me in right from the beginning. One of the main characters, Annie, is actually played by a Degrassi alum, which is what originally drew me to the show. This starts off following another class of California teens, but the show expands to many different characters and story lines throughout the seasons. I’ve watched this series all the way through twice, and still follow some of the actresses on Instagram because I grew to love them. The show is currently available on Amazon Prime.
2. Gossip Girl So, I actually didn’t watch this show until a couple of years after it ended, but the first episodes I streamed had me hooked immediately. This show is your typical teen drama, but focuses on the elite, super rich side of New York. I love that this show takes place in the city, I love that it is centered on fashion, and I love Blake Lively and Leighton Meester (I also really, really love Chuck and Blair’s relationship…but who doesn’t?). My cousin is obsessed with Gossip Girl, and she’s the one who got me into it. I’m so glad she did because this is a great show to binge, especially if you want to get pulled into the story and forget about your own stress for a while. All of Gossip Girl is available on Netflix.
1. One Tree Hill I cannot even begin to describe my love for this show. Yes, I was horrified to hear the allegations against creator Mark Schwahn not too long ago, but this show and all of its beautiful messages still remain unblemished in my mind. OTH starts out as another high school drama, but it goes deeper into the relationships of the characters and who they are as people more than any other teen soap I’ve seen before. The main character’s love for literature speaks to my heart, and there is so much amazing music and art included in, and created for, this show. A really great decision the writers made was to skip over the college years; so we see the cast go through high school, and then jump to them being in their early 20s. It sounds weird, but it worked so well for the story. My favorite thing about this show is getting to see the evolution of each character throughout the 9 seasons (ie, 13 year time span) of the show. The transformation of some key people is not only amazing to watch, but it’s absolutely believable. This show taught me so much about myself and what I want out of the world; it inspired me and touched me deeply, and I would absolutely recommend it to a woman of any age. My husband and I recently watched it together and he loved it, too! One Tree Hill is currently on Hulu!
What are some of your go-to teen drama shows? I feel like shows in the late 90s/2000s were so much better than they are now, but everyone probably feels that way about a certain period of time that’s special to them.
It’s silly to think that a TV show, especially one that’s made to be over-the-top, could actually have an impact on its viewer; but a lot of these shows stuck with me over the years.
Going back to watch an old series sometimes feels like wrapping myself up in my own teenage blanket, remembering how I saw the world at such a crucial point in my life, reflecting on who I was and who I turned out to be.
Comment below with your recommendations for great dramas I can binge watch at night, or with a special show that means a lot to you.
I love to find out more about you guys, so please don’t hesitate to share!
So, unlike many other bloggers (and many other girls in general) I’m not a huge fan of makeup.
When I was younger I was never allowed to wear it, and that’s probably why I wasn’t really interested in makeup when I got older.
I’m also pretty terrible at doing my own makeup; again, most likely due to my lack of practice.
However, I do like to wear basic makeup when I want to look a little more dressed up, so I’ll do a natural look for client meetings, parties, photo shoots, etc.
I wanted to share a super simple, natural makeup approach that is my go-to whenever I want to highlight my natural features and make my skin look more even-toned.
All of the products I use can be found in a drug store or on Amazon (all are linked to Amazon in this post) and are pretty inexpensive.
So here’s a step-by-step guide of how to create my natural makeup look; this only takes 20-25 min and is very easy to do, so it’s perfect for a daily morning routine or a once-in-a-while look refresh.
Step 1: Primer
This product is actually a recent find for me, but I absolutely love it.
It has great coverage for a primer and the “Light” shade blends perfectly with my skin tone; I’ve actually worn just this primer with mascara when in a rush!
It is also available in a transparent color, which allow you to get the same pore minimizing benefits with an even more natural look.
Step 2: Foundation
I love this foundation because it goes on smooth and is still only light-medium coverage.
In the winter I use the Ivory shade but in the warmer months I switch to one of the Light or Light-Medium shades; they have a lot to choose from so you should be able to find the right one for your skin tone.
You can use any type of blender or sponge to put on your foundation, but I prefer the standard makeup wedges; they are cheap and disposable, so I can just throw them away after a few uses to avoid causing extra breakouts on my skin.
Step 3: Bronzer
This is one of the most expensive makeup items I own, but I actually got it from an Ipsy bag some time ago and it has lasted me a while.
A few things I love about this product: it smells like chocolate (!!!), it adds the perfect amount of color and slight tan to my face, and it (seemingly) lasts forever.
I would definitely recommend this bronzer, but if it’s a little above your price point, there are certainly others from trusted brands like Neutrogena or Maybelline that are cheaper.
Step 4: Mascara
This mascara is literally the BOMB…it’s double-sided and adds both volume and length to your lashes.
I’ve read online that a trick to getting really great-looking lashes is to use two different mascaras, but you don’t even have to do that with this Covergirl tube because it’s already two in one.
I kind of bought this on a whim a few years ago when I saw the commercial for it, but I’ve loved it ever since and am always going back to get the same one when I run out.
Step 5: Lip
I’ve posted about Baby Lips before; it’s basically a great lip balm with a few different shades to choose from.
My everyday go-to is Coral Crave, which is just slightly pinker than my natural lip color.
It adds a little more color to my face without it even looking like I have anything on, which is awesome.
That’s it! I don’t use eyeliner, highlighter, eye shadow, or setting spray for my typical makeup look.
As I mentioned, I like to keep it simple and I also aim to highlight my natural features rather than changing the look of them.
Of course, I’m not knocking anyone who likes a more intensive makeup look; I went the first 18-ish years of my life wearing virtually no makeup, so even this very minimal style sometimes feel like a lot on my skin.
The thing that I think is cool about makeup is how customizable it is; there are so many different products out there that you can choose something as bold or as tame as you want, and you can change it up every single day if you want to.
I hope you found this list of products useful, and I’m more than happy to hear any makeup tips you may have to share!
Comment below to let me know some of your favorite products, and what you think they work best for (every day look, costume makeup, extra glam, etc).
Thanks for checking out my latest post and I hope to see you back here again soon! ❤ 🙂
I like this list because it covers a lot of different things—I got personal with a few and discovered things about myself, I covered beauty with my hair and skincare routines, fashion was of course included with outfit inspiration throughout, and then a threw in a few other recipe and work-related posts to round it out.
I hope you enjoyed reading these posts as much as I enjoyed writing them; I think my favorite ones were the zodiac sign analysis, 10 things about me, and who Id have dinner with, because these really forced me to take a look at myself and get personal with you guys.
Thanks so much for taking this journey with me, and even though I might not continue posting every day for the next month, I’ve still got a lot of fun content planned for future posts. ❤ 🙂
Today I want to talk about my most used phone applications, including the ones that I use most for blogging as well as in my personal life.
I do try to limit my screen time, but like most other people today, I am on my phone a lot.
The cool thing is, there are so many apps that help with productivity and tracking progress, and that’s what most of my frequently used apps help me with.
Here’s a list of my go-tos and what I love about them.
Notes – The notes app is standard on iPhones and I’m sure there’s an equivalent on other phones, as well.
As a writer, I use the Notes app to take down random ideas or inspiration all the time.
I use Siri to create notes while I’m driving so i won’t lose a good thought, and I even write some blog posts on here while on the go and then transfer them to my laptop to add into WordPress when I’m ready to finalize and post.
This app is free and easy to use, and is continuously getting more advanced, which I think is pretty cool for a standard phone app.
Instagram – As much as I complain about social media, I do love Instagram.
I like being able to see little snippets of people’s lives and am always surprised by the photography skills of some of my friends and acquaintances.
I like Instagram better than other social media apps like Facebook and Twitter. I feel lien people just use those to complain or be nasty to others these days, and it’s a little easier to ignore that stuff on Instagram.
I also just like posting and browsing pictures of outfits and other lifestyle inspiration that people I follow post.
I definitely have not had as much time as usual for Instagram lately, but I do enjoy using it for both blogging and personal purposes.
Goodreads – Those of you who read regularly are probably familiar with this app, but if you aren’t then you should definitely check it out!
Goodreads is an awesome community, reading tracker, and review system for readers all rolled into one.
It allows you to rate books you read and see ratings from others if you’re considering a book.
It allows you to keep lists (i.e., shelves) of your read, to be read, and currently reading titles and has challenges that you can set for yourself; Goodreads is what I used to track my 50 book reading challenge last year.
Another cool thing about Goodreads is that a lot of authors get involved with it, so I’ll occasionally get emails about virtual Q&A sessions with my favorite writers or other updates directly from them.
Nike+ Run Club – I’ve been using this app for almost 10 years and, although it has changed a lot over time, it’s still my favorite run tracking app.
I find it super easy to use, plus it has all of my running data (and all of my PRs) from throughout the years.
My favorite feature on the app is that your friends can send you “cheers” in real time when you go on a run and you literally hear cheering cut into your headphones at random times throughout your workout.
I hate paying full price for things, so if I see something I really like I save it on the app (super easy to do once you download it) and I get notifications about it from then on!
The app notifies you if something is low in stock/out of stock, back in stock, and on sale.
I just got some great new shoes this weekend because the app notified me that they finally went on sale; I may have had to wait a couple of weeks, but I got the exact pair of shoes I wanted without having to pay full price for them.
Ebates – This is another app I wrote about in my save while shopping post, and have buzzed to my family and friends about for a couple of years now.
Ebates is an app that you use to shop, or a browser extension you can add, that track what you buy and gives you cash back on purchases from qualifying stores.
It’s a free and easy way to get additional discounts on things you want to buy!
Those shoes I mentioned buying this weekend? I got them for 30% off from Macy’s thanks to Shoptagr notifying me that there was a sale, and then got an additional 10% cash back from Ebates.
All of that discount came just from downloading a couple of apps on my phone…so awesome.
PicMonkey – So, I prefer to keep it as real as possible whenever possible, but sometimes you have to do a little photo editing for your blog.
My editing app of choice is PicMonkey, which I found by reading through a few lists of the best apps for bloggers.
It was an app that I had to buy in the app store; the only one on this list that requires payment, but it wasn’t expensive and it’s been useful to me since starting this blog.
The app is great for adjusting lighting, color, and adding some cool filters or effects
Pinterest – I can’t even count the number of amazing tips I have found on Pinterest, especially while planning my wedding.
Between my husband and I building a house, me being a Matron of Honor for my sister, and me constantly needing creative stimulation for my job, Pinterest has been a bottomless well of information and inspiration for me.
I can get caught up and spend hours poring through all of the great posts and pins, but my favorite thing about Pinterest is that I’m not just killing time on it, I’m actually finding things that will help me with what’s going on in my life.
There are a bunch more apps that I use regularly, but I think seven is a good amount to highlight for now.
All of these help me be productive in some way, and I’m happy to know that a lot of the time I spend on my phone is used to get things done.
It’s so important to relax and be able to do things that you enjoy, but it’s also important to spend the necessary time on your responsibilities.
It’s all about balance, and I’m glad that my cell phone and the apps that I use every day help me find a balance between work and play. ❤ 🙂