Friday, October 21, 2016

Simple Ways to Refresh Your Home Décor

While I still haven’t done an apartment tour post (it’s coming!) one of my favorite things to do is decorate my home. My perfect weekend would be spent perusing local antique and thrift stores, finding unique pieces that make great additions to my modern-meets-vintage style apartment. I’m a little nervous for the day when I make the leap into home ownership because I’m the type of person that wants to have every room perfectly decorated within the first week of moving in.

Today I wanted to share some simple ways you can refresh your home décor without breaking the bank or spending countless hours trying to renovate.

Fresh Flowers // I love finding new ways to incorporate flowers into my home. There’s just something about walking through the front door and seeing a bouquet of freshly cut flowers that makes your home feel like a home. Instead of putting your blooms in a typical vase, find something a little distinct like a teapot, Mason jar or vintage medicine bottles.


Candles // Candles are for me, what coffee is for most people. I just can’t get enough. I really enjoy coming home after a long day and lighting a candle in my room while I read a book or in the bathroom when taking a bath. My mom and I went to Sip & Stroll a few months back where she bought me these Capri Blue candles –the volcano mercury candle and muse faceted jar  - and I love them. They not only look cute but they smell amazing!

New Art Prints // I’ve said It before and I’ll say it again – I’m a huge fan of Rifle Paper Co. prints. My gallery wall is almost exclusively prints from this stationary company. I have so many that whenever I’m looking for a change I simply switch out the print with something else. You can even use their wrapping paper and fit it into a frame like I did (bottom right)!

Psst! If you live in Orlando, their Sidewalk Sale is this weekend! You get almost 70% off their prints, calendars and more if you head over to their Winter Park store.


Seasonal Décor // Growing up, my mom was determined at decorating the home for each season. I could always count that on Thanksgiving weekend, we would spend two full days putting up the Christmas decorations. While I’m not as dedicated as she is, I still like to do my part in bringing a new season into my home.


There are some great ways to celebrate fall that include decorating. You can pull out the pumpkins, orange and red inspired tablecloths & napkins and get in the Halloween spirit with fun and spooky décor. Target always has the BEST seasonal decorations in their $1 bins so I highly recommend checking it out if you’re looking for something new on a budget.

Now, I would love to hear from YOU! What are some ways you switch up your home décor? Leave a comment below!

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

How to Prepare For A Blog Conference


Hi, friends! Does anyone else feel like everyone is getting sick right now? I’m finally getting over my cold and am ready to write. I just got back from Atlanta where I went to BarkWorld for work (side note – when you find a job that literally pays for you to go play with dogs, you know you made it) and it inspired me to share some ways on how you can make the most out of a blog conference.

Do Your Research: There are a TON of influencer conferences out there. Before you open your wallet make sure the conference is a good fit for your blog. Check out the speakers and sessions and see if it's something that can help you grow as a blogger. For example, while I do love dogs, it might not make sense for me (as a blogger) to attend a pet influencer conference when I’m trying to brand myself as a travel and lifestyle blog. All in all, just choose your conferences wisely since most people don’t have the opportunity to attend more than a few a year.

Come Prepared: Knowing what to bring is always smart before you head out the door for a conference - especially if you have to travel to get there. Below I’ve created a checklist for you so you’ll be all set when packing. Pinning for later is encouraged ;)


Network: One of my favorite things about going to conferences is connecting with other bloggers IRL and learning from their experiences. For the most part, we’re all attending to learn information on ways to grow our blog. To quote B.o.B “if it’s all for one, and one for all. Then maybe one day, we all can ball” - sorry, guys that song has been stuck in my head all week.

So let’s help each other- exchange business cards and think of ways you can collaborate someday in the future and stay connected. Having friends in this online world is so important when it’s all too easy to simply give up when things get tough. Once you have friends like Bella, from Bella and The City, who comments on almost all my posts, it’s a great reminder for why you continue to write.

Have fun: My last tip may be a little obvious but have fun with it! Go to that open bar and get your money's worth. Be a little brave and introduce yourself to another blogger you admire. You never know what connections can be made if you don’t try.

BONUS: Check out my company’s creator conference, IZEAFest in February! Take 15% off IZEAFest tickets with code: 2017CREATOR

As always, thanks for reading!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

An Open Letter to My Dog

For her 10th birthday I threw her a party - and you thought she wasn't spoiled.
Well, monkey. You’re officially 11 years old today. Or in dog years, 77 years old! But lets just stick with 11. I know you do everything you can to disprove your age. And as we know, you love attention. You even made sure to get born on your uncle’s birthday – completely overshadowing him you sly dog.


I still vividly remember the day I picked you, or more accurately when you chose me. Out of all the puppies in the litter you had your signature level of confidence and ran right up to me. I took the fact that you were wearing a purple collar (my favorite color at the time) as a sign that you were the dog for me.

Because you were only a few weeks old I couldn’t take you home yet. But the next couple of weeks consisted of driving over an hour each Saturday to simply play with you for a short period of time and introduce you to your new family. From your uncle to your grandparents and even your great-grandparents, you melted hearts.

Fast forward 11 years later and I have never once regretted having you in my life. Sure, you like to give me an occasional heart attack when you decide that rat poison will be your dinner. And we can’t forget the time you ate an entire bag of Dove dark chocolate two days before Christmas. I’ve just come to expect that every two years you will have a near death experience that will put a nice dent in my savings as well as giving me an emotional breakdown. But that’s just you.

I sometimes wonder what my next dog will be like (even though there’s nothing more I would want than for you to have some Luke Cage like powers and live forever). It’s hard to imagine another dog since your personality shines so much. I like to joke with my mom that her dog reflects her – sweet and docile, while mine reflects me. You’re stubborn, only giving attention when you want it, almost always never listen and will out bark any bitch.

Regardless of how much stress you put me through, there’s something about walking through the front door and seeing you go batsh*t crazy that makes the $30 prescription dog food worth it. So here’s to you Lils! 11 years and counting. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ways to Celebrate Fall

I know, I know. I haven’t posted in almost two weeks (cringe) so you might be thinking that I’m starting to slip. And, you’re probably – okay, definitely - right. But between surviving Hurricane Matthew and all-company meetings at my job last week I think I’m justified in being a bit behind.

Well, now that that bit of awkwardness is behind me lets chat about everyone’s favorite season. I recently got the Orlando Weekly’s issue with their Fall Guide for 2016 and it gave me all the feels. No matter what city you live in, chances are there’s a ton of fall-inspired events so I suggest doing some research to find out what you’re interested in. I’m especially excited for the Orlando Beer Festival. Since my Dads birthday is around the same time I’m thinking I treat myself – I mean him – to some craft beer.

If you follow me on Instagram (and if you don’t click here) then you’ve probably seen some of my apartment pictures. I absolutely love to decorate. Anytime I can justify purchasing another Rifle Paper Co. print I will do so. So when it comes to celebrating fall I love to pull out my cloth pumpkins, fake leaves and pumpkin scented candles. It’s a great way to change up your apartment with minimal effort.

Another thing I love about fall is that it gives you an excuse to purchase an all-new wardrobe. Between sweaters, boots, a new bag – heck pretty much anything you want you just have to tell yourself, “I need this for the new season” And voila! You’ve got yourself some new clothes.

Want a real like example? I recently saw a post from The Daily Tay with this adorable (and a little pricey) cardigan but after two glasses of wine I managed to convince myself that I absolutely needed it (even though I live in Florida where the weather is holding strong at around 82 degrees) and here I am writing this in said cardigan!

I think what I’m trying to say is, there are a ton of ways to embrace the basic and find your own way of celebrating fall. For me, it just happened to be buying an overpriced, but totally worth it, cardigan. Share in the comments below some ways you celebrate fall!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Best Places to Eat in Orlando for Lunch

I want to start off by saying that just because I don’t cook doesn’t mean I don’t love to eat. In fact, I think I’m a pretty trusted advisor on this subject considering I eat out everyday for lunch. Yes, I know it’s bad for you and yes it’s expensive. But, to quote Mac from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, “I’m dug in and I’ll never change.” So, since I have tried most of the local restaurants I wanted to create a quick snapshot of the best places to eat in Orlando for lunch.

Black Rooster Taqueria

If you’re a fan of tacos (and if you aren’t we can't be friends) then I highly recommend you head over to Mills and check out Black Rooster. It’s the perfect spot for lunch with their contemporary Mexican tacos, bowls & ceviche. Everything they serve is fresh with the highest ingredients and you can taste the explosion of Latin flavors. Plus, the Day of the Dead themed decor makes for a unique setting among the Mills 50 District.

What to Order: Guacamole, carne asada and achiote pork tacos with a Corona. 

Pig Floyd’s Urban Barbakoa 

Another favorite restaurant in the Mills 50 District is Pig Floyds. Its rustic setting serves globally flavored BBQ dishes with craft beer. The place consistently has a nice crowd, as it’s a favorite among locals with the urban atmosphere and it’s mouthwatering, literally mouthwatering, dishes. They celebrate being big on flavor and big on style – two things you can definitely feel when you walk through the door.

What to Order: Plain Jane Barbakoa sandwich with a side of fried yuca and a craft beer

Bikes, Beans & Bordeaux

Otherwise known as B3, this café is great for meat eaters and vegetarians alike.  Located in the Colonial Town Neighborhood, they are mainly known for providing cyclists a haven amidst the bustling city. With creations inspired by famous cyclists, they’ve mastered the art of making sandwiches.  B3 also prides itself on serving healthy dishes – something that I’m always in desperate need of.

What to Order: The Messenger sandwich with turkey. Bonus - dishes come with a side of jelly beans!

East End Market

For a variety of foods and flavors, East End Market is great for a lunch outing in the Audubon Park Garden District. From bakers to pasta makers to coffee roasters, this marketplace will satisfy cravings you didn’t even knew you had.  I stopped in for lunch one day and enjoyed a delicious Turkey and Brie Panini from one vendor and then purchased a chocolate chip cookie from the Old Hearth Bread Co. I suggest you simply walk around and pick and choose what you want from the various local merchants. It’s impossible to go wrong.

What to Order: Anything. Just anything.

Japan Express

You know how sometimes there’s that dive restaurant that actually serves amazing food? Well, that’s Japan Express. It offers hibachi-style drive-thru – sounds completely sketchy but I swear on my life it is delicious. I first heard about it from my hairdresser and I’ve never looked back. I think I’m their best customer (and I really should get a referral bonus) because I always seem to make it out there at least once a week. No regrets.

What to Order: Steak hibachi bowl with noodles. Their white sauce is just as good as Kobe's. Trust me! 

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