Category Archives: Anything & Everything

Smile!

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Smile!

Hi!! Johnny and I have a lot to smile about and I am so excited for all of our upcoming adventures. We recently got fully vaccinated with the Moderna vaccine and are looking forward to a much more active summer than last year! We also recently got engaged and have really been enjoying planning our nuptials. Our wedding will be short, sweet, and small so the ceremony didn’t need much thought but our outfits most definitely did! We have even begun making plans for our honeymoon, hopefully, next year. 😀

Getting vaccinated has lifted our cloud of constant anxiety significantly and while we will always err on the side of caution, it has felt so good to do things we never would have considered at the start of the pandemic. For example, when my brother and his family came to visit from Georgia, we all went to the zoo and ate at a restaurant. That was mine and Johnny’s first big outing since March nineteenth of last year and it was a blast. Spending time in public with my whole family is what I have been waiting for for so long and not experiencing crippling fear the whole time was the cherry on top!

Returning to some semblance of normal has felt like coming home after a long vacation. What never will be normal, however, is my fiance’s process when it comes to taking selfies with me! Lol, I swear getting a regular, smiling picture with Johnny can be like pulling teeth but it always makes me laugh until we snap just the right pic:

^^^ He loves me! 😀

Every day with Johnny is the best day and I feel so thankful for all of the wonderful things we have to smile about. ❤

What are you looking forward to this summer? What can always make you smile? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Moving House? Location Is Everything

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Moving House? Location Is Everything

While some people seek out locations to move house that are off the beaten path, for the most part, a more convenient location tends to be a huge factor when deciding to move. It’s important to think about how far you are willing to drive to get from point A to point B and to consider the following when determining if a potential home’s location is right for you:

In Case Of Emergency:

Being within close proximity of adequate medical care should be a high priority in case of a health emergency. You will want your new home to be nearby to a hospital that takes your insurance and that can easily be accessed by an ambulance. For that reason, a house on a street that easily gets backed up with traffic is not ideal.

Don’t forget to consider home emergencies, as well. Is there going to be an emergency locksmith handy in case you lose your keys? How about a highly rated local plumber if one of your pipes burst? Do your research about the professionals in the area you might be moving into to make sure they can quickly be available if need be.

Consider Your Commute:

The location of a potential home should never make your drive to work less convenient for you. Find out what your new route to work would be and if the drive doesn’t feel doable, especially during peak traffic times, then it might not be for you. Remember, you will be stuck with that commute until you move again.

Access To Education:

Are there good local schools around the home you are considering if you have children or are planning to? Or are you thinking about going back to school? Driving an hour plus to the closest college can instantly put a damper on a potential home. Think about your future goals and plans and ask yourself if the home’s location can accommodate them.

Highways/Shopping Centers:

Is the home you are looking at close to local shopping centers for groceries, clothing, home maintenance, etc.? If not, is it in close proximity to a highway that can get you to the nearest stores quickly? I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want to drive a half hour every time I had to go grocery shopping!

“Location is everything” is an often heard phrase when it comes to moving house and it usually rings pretty true. Unless you don’t mind more driving, that is!

See You Tomorrow!

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See You Tomorrow!

Hello!! I am writing this two days after I got my second Moderna vaccine and your girl is not doing so hot. The day after was complete misery and while today is much better than the first, it is exhausting to do just about anything. So, with that being said, I will see you all tomorrow when I am, hopefully, feeling much better! Much love. -Sarah

We Went To Jared’s

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We Went To Jared’s

Hi! This past Saturday, Johnny and I had a fabulous date day which resulted in picking out my custom wedding band at Jared’s. After getting engaged, I took my ring to Jared’s to get resized and they did an excellent job so I was very excited to go back to see what they could do for my wedding band. I was happy to see all of the wonderful employees who helped me previously at the store that day and Johnny and I left feeling confident and simply ecstatic on our purchase.

Johnny has had his wedding band for a while now and prior to our morning at Jared’s, I spent a decent amount of time coming up with a price point in my head that I was comfortable with. While what I originally had in mind was way over budget, the employees rallied together to help come up with a customized ring that was similar to what I wanted and was within my price point. They were so respectful about not trying to upsell me and I really appreciated that because when it comes to the jewelry business, pushing for a more extravagant purchase is usually the name of the game.

My wedding band will boast rubies and black diamonds which was the most important thing to me and the shape of the rocks are so unique too! I just know it will look perfect with my engagement ring and I cannot wait to pick it up later in May!

After wedding band shopping, Johnny and I headed to my mom and dad’s place to hang out with our little niece, play some games, and watch an episode of the Ken Burns baseball documentary that I got my dad for his birthday. We spent the entire afternoon there and decided to end our day by participating in Dry Ice Saturday at the Cashmere Cricket, our favorite bar.

Unfortunately, The Cricket was jam packed so we went to the Ohio Brewing Company where I had my first Moscow Mule in over a year and a half! I don’t know if it’s because I haven’t had a Mule in so long or the drink I got from the OBC was really that good but it was seriously the best Moscow Mule I’ve ever had. Once we were done at the bar, we returned to our apartment to play Trivial Pursuit and Super Smash Bros and had a blast.

These last few weeks have been extremely stressful for me and my date day with my fiance was just what I needed to help get myself back to baseline. It was a perfect day of ring shopping, family time, and video games and, as always, it’s very exciting to cross one more thing off of our wedding checklist. I cannot wait to get married! ❤

What is your favorite gemstone? What is an ideal date day for you? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Feeling Blah

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Feeling Blah

Hello! Man, I don’t know about you guys but it has been a week for Lil Red. My lil niece was under the weather which resulted in me getting sick and to make matters worse, it was that time of the month on top of it! It has been a very stressful time in my life recently and I think that made whatever little bug I got from my niece even more debilitating because I was in a bad way. Due to all of the COVID safety precautions, I have not been sick in a really long time so this bout with the flu completely knocked me off my feet.

Being sick is always a bummer and, unfortunately, Johnny and I experienced another bummer to add to the overall blah feeling. We had viewed and applied for a home to rent and it was absolutely perfect. It was an ideal size, wonderful location, and a very cute little neighborhood. I felt so good about the impression that we made and was pretty confident that we would get approved to move in. I checked Trulia religiously after we applied and was crushed when I saw that it had been taken off of the market without us being contacted.

At the end of the day, not getting the house wasn’t a huge deal but it was definitely disappointing. It was just so nice and Johnny and I both loved it. Because of that and feeling confident about the possibility of moving in, I think I got a bit ahead of myself so seeing the house being taken off of the market felt like an even bigger blow. It also made me realize that finding a house to rent might be a lot harder than I had originally bargained for which sucks because I would really like to move out of the apartment!

Needless to say, it has been a blah time in Lil Red’s world but I think things will start turning around soon. A vent sesh on the ol’ blog always makes me feel better so thanks for listening to me complain, lol. Let the Trulia and Zillow searches commence…. again!

Do you have any tips for finding a house to rent? What makes you feel better when you’re feeling blah? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

175 Day Duolingo Streak!

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175 Day Duolingo Streak!

Hello! The last time I gave an update on my Duolingo progress, I had just achieved a one hundred day streak and I finally received my badge for adding seventy-five more days to it. I am so pleased with my progress and am proud of myself for continuing to practice five different languages every day for close to half a year. I am leaving previous goals in the dust and I feel like my skills in French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Czech are improving tenfold.

Thanks to Johnny gifting me Duolingo Plus for Christmas, practicing every day has become an exciting thing rather than an inconvenience because Plus gives you unlimited life. This is so handy on especially tough lessons and I don’t think I would have made it to a one hundred seventy-five day streak without it. I will most definitely be renewing my Plus subscription at the end of the year and highly recommend it.

Other than writing, learning languages is my favorite hobby and I feel good about committing myself even more to it. Similarly to how I feel after I finish a blog post for the day, I feel accomplished every time I complete my language lessons and it has really helped me shake away the pandemic boredom blahs. It’s hard to feel like there is “nothing” to do when I can go on Duolingo and learn brand new words and phrases in multiple different languages!

While I am over the moon with my one seventy-five day streak, I am nowhere close to being done yet because I will not be satisfied until I have a full year’s worth of days on my streak counter. I am almost halfway there and cannot wait to see the results of my hard work after one full year of practicing five languages. Great success!

Have you made progress on your pandemic hobbies? What is your favorite hobby? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Guess What?!

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Guess What?!

Hello everyone! I have got some big news for all of you so I am going to get right to it… JOHNNY AND I ARE ENGAGED!! He proposed to me on Saturday the thirteenth and I am still floating on cloud nine. You guys will have to tune in tomorrow for the full proposal story but here’s a little sneak peek of our day:

yay

I am, truly, the happiest, luckiest girl in the universe and this past Saturday was one of the best days of my life. I just melt every time I think of how Johnny proposed and we are so excited to share our joy and story with all of you. See you tomorrow! Much love. -Sarah

This Old Thing

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This Old Thing

Hello!! A fun fact about me that shocks many people is that, at almost twenty-seven years old, I have never owned a smartphone. Rather, I have been steadily rocking a slide up or flip phone for the past thirteen or so years. This is pretty uncommon for someone who works in the social media field but I have stood by my signature catchphrase of “when keyboard phones are no longer made, you can call me on the landline” for over a decade. As you can see, I am pretty old school and this is my current model:

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My whole reasoning behind never owning a smartphone is that I fail to see the point of having immediate internet access wherever I go. Pre-pandemic, I would gain inspiration for my daily blog posts by being out and about and seeing what catches my eye and that would be hard to do if I were scrolling through social media instead of observing and enjoying my surroundings. I also never want to be the friend who is constantly on my phone when I am hanging out with someone. My phone allows me to call and text and that is really all I have ever needed especially because all of my blog pictures are just taken using my iPod Touch.

I have always had a low maintenance “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it” approach to technology. However, I’m not saying that it wouldn’t be nice to have a better camera and an Instagram! I just discovered that if I wanted to use the Like To Know It program for my viewers to shop my outfits that I would need an Insta if I don’t want to upgrade to a business plan on WordPress. I am super interested in Like To Know It and don’t necessarily want to change my current plan on WordPress so a smartphone might be the next logical move.

For now, I am fine with the phone that I have had since I was like fourteen lol and I enjoy the novelty of having an actual keyboard to text with. It’s actually a major step for me to even consider wanting a smartphone but I will definitely think more about it if any of you would be interested in shopping my style! So please let me know in the comments and I will stay using Johnny’s phone for OOTD pictures in the meantime. 🙂

What kind of phone do you have? What is your approach when it comes to technology? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Learning A New Hobby? Remember These Tips!

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Learning A New Hobby? Remember These Tips!

When bringing a new practice, hobby, or discipline into our lives, we can often go through the ‘honeymoon period’ where everything seems awesome and we’re excited to learn more and more. Of course, many of us find that starting out can sometimes be quite difficult, especially when we meet a challenge we’re not prepared to deal with, or if we have a long period of training that seems to be progressing slowly.

But that’s fine, after all, Rome isn’t built in a day, and we can’t expect to be perfect at our new practice within the span of a week. For that reason, it’s important to be prepared for this process and, instead, focus on what matters – setting up your passion as properly as we can. This can prevent us from getting bored and moving onto the next new thing, which often leaves us with endless practices that have been given up on which you might come to regret later.

If you’re getting into a new hobby or practice, focus on these three efforts to keep yourself grounded, too:

Keep Cultivating Your Inspiration:

Keep cultivating your inspiration if you can. It really does make a difference in the long run. For example, when hoping to play guitar, you might focus on listening to the great acoustic players such as Don Ross or Anton Dufour. This way, you can more easily feel a sense of kinship with the beauty of your craft, have an ideal to work towards, and more easily shrug off the difficulties on the journey to competence.

Focus On Your Possible Route Forward:

Focusing on your possible route forward can help you more readily stage your learning and practice habits. It’s better to give yourself a set amount of time to practice each day and set mini-goals for yourself rather than try to take too much on at once. This helps you to enjoy the process of learning rather than forcing yourself to become an expert at once and, unfortunately, too many people choose this latter option. Remember, the journey should be just as enjoyable as the destination.

Learn Practical Skills:

It’s good to focus on the actual craft of a hobby or skill rather than the simple image it provides. Of course, you don’t have to be absolutely perfect at learning perspective in order to paint well and to enjoy yourself doing it, but you will gain a lot from the practice, and learning techniques is fun in itself! You might spend time learning how to read piano sheet music in order to learn more quickly and benefit from this highly practical skill, richly rewarding your practice sessions and lessons from then on.

With this advice, we hope that you can get into learning and perfecting your new hobby with confidence. Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

Featured Image By: Pexels

How To Save Money & Stress When Moving

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How To Save Money & Stress When Moving

We all know the cliche about moving house being one of the most stressful and expensive things you can ever do. But those negatives aren’t necessarily as inevitable as you might think they are. There are so many ways in which you can reduce the costs associated with moving, while also making the process as minimally stressful as it can be. And that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about today. Read on and benefit from these tips:

Plan Your Move Around Your Work Schedule:

If you can schedule the day of the move for a time when you’re not going to be working or when you can book paid leave from your job, that’s the right thing to do from a financial standpoint. People often think about the fees and costs of moving to a new home, but the money you lose by being forced to take unpaid time away from work is something that also shouldn’t be ignored.

Declutter Before the Move:

Your move will be a lot less stressful for you if you can take the time to declutter your property beforehand. Spending time, energy, and money moving things that you don’t even want or need is pointless from an efficiency and financial point of view. By clearing out your property today and simply getting rid of the things that you really don’t need anymore, you’ll be able to avoid that level of wasted resources.

Try to Move Off-Season if Possible:

The costs associated with moving differ depending on the time of year. If you want to move in summer when everyone else is also trying to move house, you’re going to face higher demand and competition for people looking to secure the services of good movers and solicitors. The process will also be longer as well as more expensive because of the delays caused by that high demand for the necessary professional services.

See if You’re Entitled to Any Discounts:

When looking to secure the help of moving professionals, you should take the time to see if you’re entitled to any discounts often offered by those kinds of services. For example, people over a certain age level, students, and people who have served in the military or government agencies are very often entitled to discounted services. It’s a great way to save money, so don’t miss out if you’re entitled.

Work with Reliable Professionals:

Working with reliable moving professionals who are going to be able to make the move as smooth for you as it can be will make your life a lot less stressful. The right moving professionals have the knowledge and experience necessary, which will help alleviate some of your worries. Try to find people who are skilled and trusted in their niche – that applies to movers, solicitors, and everyone else in between.

Source Free Packing Materials:

Sourcing packing materials is one of the best ways out there to save money. If you’re paying for boxes and tape and all of the other wrapping and protective materials you need, you’ll be wasting money. All of that stuff is out there and you can usually get your hands on it very cheaply. Ask around because everyone has boxes that they no longer need after their own house move. Better still, find a moving company that offers this stuff at no extra cost to you.

Saving yourself stress and time when moving house is essential to making the experience a more positive one. Get started with the tips above so you can focus your attention on the more pressing matters of your move.

Featured Image By: Pixabay