4.07.2014

Week 6: 100 Happy Days

Six weeks in and I seriously love doing the 100 Happy Days Challenge. One of my favorite things about this mini-series, is that it allows me to go back through my pictures and see all of the moments in my life that have not only made me happy, but that have also made an impact on my life. This past week has been filled with so much love and laughter and I am excited to share it with you.

Day 36 (3.29.14): For our anniversary, Kit and I went on a weekend getaway to Sacramento. We went and explored Old Sacramento as well as downtown and midtown and got to enjoy some beautiful (and a bit rainy) weather. I loved this colorfully painted mural on the wall so I had to take a picture! Kit also took me to eat a four-course meal at The Melting Pot--it was absolutely DIVINE! If you haven't tried it, you so have to. We even got to take home an anniversary package of chocolate covered strawberries, so good. I also was surprised with this beautiful ring! It is my birthstone (October-Tourmaline) and I love the setting with the two diamonds surrounding it. Such an eventful and fun day. 

Day 37 (3.30.14): It has officially been 1 year since I have been dating this cutie. Although it feels like it has been way longer than a year, I am so glad that I have been able to spend this year with him. He seriously brings so much joy and light into my life and I am so obsessed with his beautiful blue eyes and all that he does for me. I wouldn't have it any other way. I am so excited to see what the future holds for us. 

Day 38 (3.31.14): What better way to start off the morning than with a cup of joe and some inspiration up on the blog. Seriously love coming up with so many ideas to pour out in this blog. It is something I love doing each and every day and it gives me so much satisfaction knowing that I am making a difference in people's lives and putting a smile on their face. 

Day 39 (4.1.14): PROBABLY ONE OF FAVORITE DEALS. If you know me, you know how much I love Starbucks. If you don't, well I practically have Starbucks in my hand 24/7 and I live there most of the time (blogging of course!). I reached Gold Card Status in less than a month and I LOVE getting stars! Seriously the best thing ever. Over on Free Stuff Finder, which is one of my favorite websites for deals (you can read about them in my Coupon Post by clicking here), they posted four codes for getting a total of 20 free stars. Yeah, you heard me FREE! You just had to post two codes each day to earn 5 per code. I do not know if the free codes are still working, but they did for me and I absolutely loved it and had to share it with everyone!

Day 40 (4.2.14): Happy Happy Happy Birthday to my favorite little nugget! It was my little's birthday today and I was so excited to celebrate her life! She seriously has been such an inspiration in my life, from being a mini (actually she is taller) version of me to being so unique and allowing me to become a better person, she is constantly putting a smile on my face! I love her so much and I can't believe she is another year older! 

Day 41 (4.3.14): I have been looking up so many tutorials on creating some calligraphy (pseudo-calligraphy that is) and I attempted it on this little quote I wrote out. It looks more "calligraphied" when I write in cursive, but I think this turned out well. I stumbled upon this cute and absolutely loved it from the second I spotted the word "adventure". You know me and my adventures! I seriously love being able to go on one and I loved this as it explains my life completely! 
[And then I realized adventures are the best way to learn.]

Day 42 (4.4.14): I am not a cake person. I absolutely love to COOK and BAKE (baking more so), but I will never eat the cake or frosting, because I just have never been a fan of it. Growing up, every birthday I had, cake was the hardest part. I didn't like it. So most of the time I had Keoni Cake (which is what my family called it), however it usually goes by Better Than Sex Cake and it is absolutely divine!). The other option was a bundt cake...but not just any bundt cake--it HAD to be a Nothing Bundt Cake. My absolute favorite cake and frosting. In Vegas I would get some whenever I had the chance. Up here in Reno, I knew that they had it somewhere and I could never find it, but when Kit and I were on an adventure the other day, it happened to be in the shopping center we were in! What a coincidence! This hunk went over there and bought me some bundtinis in my favorite flavors (White Chocolate Raspberry, Chocolate Chocolate Chip, and Red Velvet). 

Day 43 (4.4.14): This past weekend was Delta Delta Delta's Annual Mother's Weekend. As exciting as it is, I love getting to see all of my sisters bringing their mothers around for me to meet (and to see the resemblance in appearance and qualities!). Usually, I never invite anybody, because it is just my dad and I, but I was fortunate enough to be invited by one of my good friends Meghan and her momma Robyn, to enjoy the weekend with them. They invited me out to lunch and I was even able to go to the Mother's Day Brunch. I seriously am so thankful for them for welcoming me and for treating me like family. They will never know how much it means to me to be a part of a mother-daughter relationship like they have. 

Feeling so grateful and blessed this week to be surrounded by such amazing people in my life. They are constantly pushing me to be better.
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4.04.2014

Coupon Community Part II

The idea of couponing comes and goes. For many it is a lifestyle, but for others who are balancing family, work, friends, school, and life it is a hobby that allows you to save money EASILY. I am constantly running around with my head spinning because I go from one event to another in a matter of minutes. When it comes to saving money, deals/sales, and coupons I have to be sure I know where I want to go with it, or if it is worth it. 
If you haven't read the first part to this section, you can check it out here (Coupon Community Part I).   You can find some of my favorite websites that I use to find deals, freebies, samples, and the best way to utilize coupons. 
Today, I want to let you all in on some Apps that I use in my everyday life on the go. All are available on an iPhone, however, other software (Droid, Windows, etc.) I am not sure about. 
Groupon- You can access Groupon via Web, however, I love this pocket version of the site. All in one access in one the touch of a button. If you have not heard of Groupon, you need to check it out NOW. Groupon delivers some of the best deals around your local area up to 70% off from Restaurants to Massages to Hair Cuts. You can even search deals around the globe (I have used in several times while on a vacation to score some great vacation savings!). Some of my favorite things about Groupon include not only being able to shop around for local deals, but they also have deals on products and getaways! It is FREE and so easy to sign up! 

RetailMeNot- This app has seriously changed my life! The worst thing to do is to walk into your favorite clothing store (MACY'S--I'm coming for you) only to realize you just left that $10 off coupon at home (no exaggeration it has happened to me several times). Or that unexpected adventure to the mall just to find yourself falling in love with items you want and OBVIOUSLY NEED. RetailMeNot definitely has my back. It searches and pulls up coupons nearby and loads them onto your phone...ALL FOR FREE. Just search nearby or search a specific store (it has the option of online AND in-store deals) and all available deals pop up. You never know when you just might run into a coupon that you did not know existed but could save you lots of money!

LivingSocial- Very similar to Groupon, which you can also access on the web as well, LivingSocial will give you local deals around town that will save you tons of money (up to 80% savings). Nearby restaurants, products, classes, etc. will pop up and you will be sure to find lots of savings. The difference between LivingSocial and Groupon is the fact that LivingSocial sometimes has a longer processing time before you can use your voucher, but if it is saving you money, it is so worth the wait! I also love the fact that on their site, they have a section dedicated to Free Coupon Access for various stores (clothing, pets, cars, toys, etc.).

Cartwheel By Target- Seriously one of my FAVORITE apps. Cartwheel By Target is FREE and saves you more money instantly. Cartwheel allows you to save even more on top of stacking coupons with a single barcode. With new discounts everyday ranging from 5% to 50% off, Cartwheel allows you to search, browse, and even scan items from Target stores to see if they are linked up to the Cartwheel App. The discounts have a set amount of days in which you can use them but they always come in hand when it comes to stacking savings on top of savings! If you have an iPhone you can add your Cartwheel Barcode into your Passbook for easy access.

Coupons.com- As mentioned before in my previous post which you can find here, Coupons.com is a great website to find Manufacturing Coupons to print out if you don't have (or even if you do) have access to the inserts in the Sunday Papers. The Coupons.com app, however, not only brings you these manufacturing coupons which you can clip and either print from your phone or email to someone, but the app also allows you to view local in-store deals from retailers, online coupon codes, and you can even link up your debit/credit card to earn cash back from purchases. I love the fact that this site has an app because it makes it convenient to view and clip coupons that I want and to email them to myself for quick printing when I have a chance to get to a computer. 

The Coupons App- This app is great for finding the cheapest gas nearby including the prices for Regular, Premium, Diesel, and Mid-Grade fuel (and also includes directions on how to get there!). In addition to the gas prices, which is constantly up to date, The Coupons App also shows in-store and online offers and codes that you can use and when they expire! Sometimes you have to check multiple apps to get the best deal and eventually you will find one! This app is great because it finds deals that I can't find in other places and it is always up to date! Plus the gas locater is AWESOME--especially when Gas prices (at least for me) have gone up almost $0.30 in the last month!

I am sure there are plenty of Apps out there that I have missed, are there any out there that I shouldn't live without? Let me know. 
Hopefully, this list makes scoring some deals and savings a little easier for the busy life we venture on each and every day. 

Stay tuned for more!

to read Coupon Community Part I <--click the link

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3.31.2014

Week 5: 100 Happy Days

Every day seems as though it comes and goes so quickly without even having a chance to be able to catch a glimpse of the beauty that lies within each and ever second. Through the 100 Happy Days Challenge, I have found it to be so much easier to be able to stop and take in the beauty of every day. It really is about the smallest of things in life that make it all worth while, is it not? 
This past week has been such a blast and I am so excited to share it with all of you! And for those that are participating in the 100 Happy Days Challenge, I am enjoying all of your posts, thoughts, and the fact that you are taking a step towards a life of happiness. 

Day 29 (3.22.14): After a great a wonderful week down in Vegas visiting the family, it was back to the college town for me. Back to Reno and for a couple days some nice beautiful tank top weather! When I got back to Reno, I was greeted by the sweetest little chalk note of love from Kit. I made him this chalkboard for Valentine's day which you can find here. It is so nice to see some simple thoughts of love especially when someone isn't there! 

Day 30 (3.23.14): So it was a beautiful day, today. Relaxing and enjoying the weekend on my own. Bought some new Crown Vintage booties that I have been eyeing ever since I spotted some booties over at Clarks that were way out of my budget, but oh so comfortable. I found these ones while browsing a blog (I totally forgot which blog, however!) and I just had to go get them at DSW. Normally $130, priced at $60 (DSW), and found these babies in the clearance section for 1/2 off. Talk about a steal that I COULD NOT & WOULD NOT pass up. Absolutely love them for their comfortability, stylish-ness, and everything! There is just something about new shoes that make everything else in life seem so perfect. "Some people look for a beautiful place, others make a place beautiful {hazrat khan}. These booties, made my day beautiful.

Day 31 (3.24.14): Growing up, my dad was the perfect role model, friend, and parent. He raised me (basically on his own//which I am forever grateful for), but he also used to sing this song to me and I will always remember and cherish it and pass it on to my children as well. ||You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray. You'll never know dear...how much I love you, so please don't take my sunshine away||. I was definitely missing my dad this past week and was so lucky to get to spend some quality time with him before I headed back to school.

Day 32 (3.25.14): HOW CUTE IS THIS FACE??? If you know me, posting a picture of a cute dog would definitely not be my cup of tea when I was younger. But over the years, I have grown to truly LOVE and ADORE dogs. Little Rocky here is my cousin's dog and although sometimes can be feisty at first, he is so sweet! How can this picture not make you smile?? And look at those snazzy glasses he is rockin'. They say a dog is the only thing on Earth that loves you more than he loves himself...

Day 33 (3.26.14): To be featured shortly will be "SPOTLIGHT OF THE WEEK". More details to follow, but one spotlight will include products (including makeup!). I recently stumbled upon MaskCara and fell in love with makeup and her all at once. If you know me, I have no idea what to do with makeup when I get it (I was raised by my daddy, remember?), so the thought of makeup, although I would love to be able to be an artist with it, kind of is out of the question. Try to give me anything other than some mascara and blush and I might just start painting on the wall. But something about MaskCara caught my eye and when I found out she had her own makeup line, I HAD TO TRY IT. More details to follow!

Day 34 (3.27.14): Escaping the outside world for a bit and decided to go on a little adventure to Jamba Juice with two of my favorite people! Oh don't worry, I did not pay full price for this delicious smoothie...there was a BOGO coupon in my email for it...So I printed it out and headed on down to enjoy some delicious Mango-a-Go-Go.

Day 35 (3.28.14): STOP. IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THIS MOVIE--->GO GET IT NOW! But really, everyone talked and talked about this movie and I just ignored watching it, but fell in love with the soundtrack. Now that sounds weird, right? So I could not just settle for the soundtrack and instead I had to go a get Frozen. I had to see for myself and boy, was that the best decision ever! I absolutely loved the movie and each of the songs (Idina Menzel--> Girl, you have a beautiful voice). Let It Go is on repeat for me and if you are daring enough, I stumbled upon this quiz, "Which Frozen Character are You?". Go ahead, you know you want to take it! I go Olaf the Snowman, and it was spot on!


Until next time...be sure to watch Frozen, browse upon Maskcara, and keep on doing the 100 Happy Days Mini-Series!

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3.28.2014

Coupon Community Part I

There's something about a coupon community that just gets me every day. The friendliness, the convenience, and the great deals that are constantly being posted about. I've had the opportunity to find these local and non-local couponers who have made my shopping trips 100x easier and have also kept me updated on deals going on online and in-store (especially when it comes to scoring the best savings using inserts!). 
I constantly enjoy seeing all of their trips to the store, their stockpiles, their friendly friends and customers, and most importantly all their savings! Who doesn't love to save....but really who doesn't love F-R-E-E??
I've decided to share some of my favorite websites with all of you that seriously help me save LOADS of cash--cash that I can put towards things like mini-VACATIONS! 
Can I get a drum roll please???
Free Stuff FinderThis website seriously has the best deals around from in-store to online. She does multiple scenarios for shoppers at Target as well as Wal-mart and she constantly posts all day long about deals online! From freebies, to samples, to getting the best deal around I follow Free Stuff Finder on Instagram as well as I am constantly staying updated with her website. 
*Fun Fact*: read her ABOUT US and fall in love with freebies, deals, couponing, and her all in one page! Such a great start up story!
All Things Target- I don't know about you, but you will VERY RARELY ever catch me walking around in Walmart (or "HellMart" as most refer to it). Target is seriously the best place for everything. The prices are affordable and this is where most of the moneymaking savings comes from. This site is based all about Target and the savings that can happen there. 
Wild For Wags- If there is one drug store I am constantly browsing, it is WALGREENS! Most of the time, they are unexpected trips there, however when I want an adventure, I am sure to browse this website for the latest deals! For all you avid Walgreens Couponers, this is DEFINITELY a site for you!
Coupons- Sometimes it might be inconvenient or challenging to get your hands on a Sunday Paper or some inserts for free. A lot of people sell inserts, but somehow the old fashioned (me asking people, digging through recycling, and trying to get my hands on inserts any way possible) seems to be better for me. I don't want to have to pay for inserts if I don't HAVE to. So this website is seriously awesome. They don't have all the manufacturing coupons that come in inserts, but they have pretty similar deals that you can get your hands on from your own personal computer--and it's FREE! You get two prints per coupon, per computer. So round up those coupons and print away!

What are your favorite websites to follow?

Stay tuned for Coupon Community Part II for links to other great websites, apps, and people who enjoy to coupon.
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3.26.2014

Healthy Lifestyle

Doing the 100 Happy Days Mini Series Challenge has been so fulfilling and I have enjoyed it. I am still not even half way through it, but what I do know is that I really think these challenges allow me to hold myself accountable to you as well as to myself. 
Lately, I have been trying to live a healthier lifestyle. A healthier lifestyle when it comes to:
FOOD
HAPPINESS
STRESS
EXERCISE
SCHOOL
LOVE
&& LIFE in general!

Sometimes you have to be willing to "FIND && TAKE the time" out of your day to do the things that benefit your health and life and I am trying to do just that. When we are constantly running around, it truly does become difficult to get up that extra hour early to fit in a 30-45 minute workout or to take a moment to breath and enjoy the sunrise. We are suppose to enjoy each and every adventure and that is what I live by--an adventure to the store, to the mall, or even taking a walk.
So here it is, the next mini series I will be partaking in is the 30 Day Ab Challenge. After seeing multiple fitness posts about 30 Day Fitness Challenges, I decided to hop on over to the site which you can find HERE. I didn't even realize how many 30 Day Fitness Challenges that there were, but boy are there A TON!
The 30 Day Ab Challenge consists of a constant addition of crunches, sit ups, leg raises, and planks each day. With a few rest days in between, I think believe this 30 Day Fitness Challenge is so motivating and I am excited to start it. 


Has anyone done one of these 30 Day Fitness Challenges? Who will be joining me? Don't forget to "#simplyadventurous" and tag @leannaalways in your Instagram posts so I can see what you are all up to! 
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