Friday Finds

Friday FindsEven though the temperatures are high and the sun still hurts when I walk outside, it’s feeling more and more like Fall. There are pumpkin recipes coming out of the woodworks (not that I mind, of course) and I’ve seen so many back-to-school crafts and projects, that I almost feel like I have a kid going back to school. I even caught myself almost pinning a couple. So, it’s no surprise that my food find for the week has my most favorite ingredient in it.

EAT:

Photo Credit: Joy / Joy the Baker

Photo Credit: Joy / Joy the Baker

Pumpkin Pecan Scones with Brown Butter Glaze from Joy the Baker

This recipe is from last year, but technically I found it this year, so it’s new to me!

READ:

Image Credit: Allie and Claire

Image Credit: Allie and Claire

Charge Up e-book by Allie from The Wonderjam and Claire from Claire Deane Marketing

I learned of these ladies through a Design*Sponge post, and needed to find out more.The book is not out yet, but it looks like it’s going to be a good one. It’s a guide to running your business and networking from an introvert’s perspective. Since I have my own troubles with networking and marketing, I’ll definitely get this book when it comes out!

DIY:

Photo Credit: Liz Marie / Liz Marie Blog

Photo Credit: Liz Marie / Liz Marie Blog

DIY Honey Cinnamon Nutmeg Face Mask from Liz Marie Blog

Right now, my skincare routine consists of washing my face with a bar of Irish Spring soap and then using Aveeno hand lotion as a moisturizer. I need something new, but even if I wanted to, I couldn’t shell out the big bucks for natural skincare products. So, I was happy to find this DIY on the 15 Cinnamon Beauty Uses list from Henry Happened.

LOCAL:

Image Credit: Capital Public Radio

Image Credit: Capital Public Radio

This Drink Radio Design Contest from Capital Public Radio looks like so much fun!

I am super new to graphic design, but it would still be fun to give it a shot

What are your favorite finds for the week? Did I introduce you to anything new? Post in the comments and connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest!

Monday Inspiration

Monday Inspiration

Whenever I’m feeling down and out, I always find a little light when I log in to my social media sites and see all the wonderful things people are doing. Whether it’s making a new recipe from scratch, finishing a long-time project or visiting an amazing city, there is always something to lift my spirits.

And then it hit me. While I wholeheartedly encourage seeking inspiration from others when you are feeling overwhelmed or just plain out of it, why aren’t I looking inside myself for inspiration? Why aren’t I amazing myself? I could do all of these things (aside from traveling, that will just have to wait), I just need to make time for them. So what’s my excuse?

I will have to say, I did make a few meals from scratch last week, and we were able to eat leftovers throughout the week. But then by Friday, it all came to a halt. I got exhausted and just couldn’t push myself to create. So I’ve gone over what was bothering me, what made me feel so uninspired, and I made a list of how to fix it. I absolutely love making lists. I don’t always follow them, but I do love to make them.

Image from Huffington Post. Lots of good positive mantras in that post.

Image from Huffington Post. Lots of good positive mantras in that post.

Then I made myself a daily schedule and now I’m working on a weekly meal plan. It’s all totally boring stuff and I feel sort of silly writing about it on my blog. But it’s a part of life and I can pretty much guarantee I’m not the only one who has felt like this. So while I don’t want to write out every detail, here is what I have planned out:

  • Write daily. Whether it’s on my blog or in my little journal, just write.
  • Cook something new and fun when I can. Find new recipes and experiment a little. Mix it up a bit. Share what I cook online.
  • Work out 30 minutes a day and practice yoga at least once a day. It’s insane how much energy I get from working out, and I always feel invigorated after doing yoga. These simple things change everything, but I never make time for them.
  • Set aside 4-6 hrs a day for school work, depending on what I have. Turn everything off so I just have that to concentrate on. Of course I will take time for baby breaks, but that’s it.
  • Schedule more Pampered Chef parties and start selling more of my stuff online
  • An hour a day on creative art stuff. It’s something that I love doing, but never give myself the time to do it.

I got inspired to work on this list after I read a little something from Danny J – who runs The Sweaty Betties – about not making any more excuses and making goals and sticking to them. So I hope I can inspire someone as well. I’m going to turn this into a little self-spring cleaning. Spring cleaning of the soul, maybe?

Share any of our Monday inspiration in the comments and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Google +. I plan on sharing more of what inspires me and makes me happy in my own daily life.

*Photo of beautiful flowers from Pretty Stuff – by Patterson Maker

Fridays are for Favorites

fridays are for favoritesWhen I was a little (ok, sometimes even now), every song that came on the radio was my FAVORITE song. I put that in all capital letters because that was how intense my love for each song was. Then I would tell everyone to be quiet because it was my favorite song, and I would continue to talk through the entire song.

This is how I feel when I look at fonts. Every font I look at, I like more than the last font. It’s a good thing I have a baby who requires the majority of my attention because I could spend an entire day looking at fonts.

So, why fonts?

When I first attended college, I knew exactly what I wanted to do – I was going to be a journalist. I would start small at a local paper, then some day, I would be writing for a big ol magazine. First, it was National Geographic. Then I realized I would have to be out in the jungle for extended periods of time, and that dream suddenly died.

When I returned to college after I lost my job, the newspaper business was on its death bed and all of my friends who were in my newspaper class back in 2005 had already lost their jobs and were all in the same boat…freelance.

So I decided to start my own blog. And I wanted to design it. And hopefully some day, I would start designing other people’s websites and blogs. And then hey, while I was at it, maybe I could design my own clothes. And then other people’s clothes.

There was one little issue. I didn’t know the first thing about design.

Image from tutoriallounge.com. Click on picture for website

Image from tutoriallounge.com.

So, I signed up for a typography class through Skillshare. And then I met the wide, wide world of typography. Hoping to get some inspiration for the class, I did what any other normal person would do and got on Pinterest. There, I opened Pandora’s box of typography.

I had NO idea how many typography tutorial sites there were. Here are my five of my favorites:

Create-a-Tasty-3D-Typographic-Illustration1. Wonderful typography tutorials for finest designers, by tutorial lounge. I counted twenty-five different tutorials for designers, in both Photoshop and Illustrator. The tutorials range from designing posters, to making portraits out of words. Definitely a good place to start.

chalkboard-howto2. How to fake a chalkboard effect in Photoshop, by foolish fire. Like the chalkboard effect as much as I do? Yeah, I thought you did. Even if you don’t, someone else does. And you could share it with them.

Cool-Wet-Ink-Typography-Effect-in-Photoshop3. 33 best typography tutorials, from graphicalerts. I like it when sites give you a variety of tutorials. If you’re in the market for a specific font or graphic, then sure, it’s good to find one that is specific to that. If you’re like me and just getting into this, it’s good to have a variety to choose from.spiff-guide-vert2

4. Beginners guide to spiffing up your hand lettering in photoshop, by foolish fire. Did foolish fire just become my new best friend? Step-by-step tutorial on making your letters look even more beautiful. Psh, if that was possible.

5. How to Create Custom Typography, by VectorLabTV. For those of you who are like me and need a visual demonstration, VectorLabTV has a bunch of tutorials that you can view on YouTube.

If this is the beginning of your typography adventure, then let the fun begin! Have any good typography tutorials to share? Please do so in the comments!

As always, you can follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter for more ideas and inspiration.