Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Blogmopolitan Quiz


I'm a little late with this one, but I couldn't resist the urge to fill this out! Link up at Two Thirds Hazel

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Obsessed with: GEO Verseau Jewelry


Hey all, I wanted to take a minute or two to introduce my sponsor Lauryn Otten from Geo Verseau. When Lauryn found my blog, I was more than excited, and happy to have her as a sponsor. Lauryn has beautiful jewelry that is definitely beautiful as well as unique! 
You could find her shop on Etsy: Geo Verseau or HERE.
Lauryn has hand made origami jewelry which is named after a Nebula or Constellation. She keeps it simple by making beautiful pieces with paper, Crystal, metal, wood. I encourage my readers to check out her shop for innovative, affordable jewelry!

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Friday, December 13, 2013

Blink starring Jess

My finals week is finally over. After taking my last final, I had this weird feeling. It was a flash back to the beginning of the semester, which then got me thinking. 

Where does the time goes? Have you seen the movie Click? The basis of the story is a man that wants to fast forward parts of his day like eating, spending time with his family and parts that he doesn't enjoy. He's given a remote by a fairy god father, and he begins his journey playing with time. What he doesn't know is that the remote will start fast forwarding further and further, and he begins skipping precious moments by skipping days, weeks, months, years, and then to his death. The moments od his life that he lost was due to his working addiction which eventualy cost him his family, and time.

After turning in my last final, I started walking to my car to go home, but instead of feeling happy and relieved as I usually do, a weird feeling plagued me. I knew I did well on on all my finals, and of course I knew I'd be on the UCF Dean's list this semester but even that didn't change the feeling I had. I began driving home, and tried playing my favorite playlists, but that didn't break my mood. What was bothering me? I'm a really happy person for the most part, and not much of a worry wort at all! 
I started feeling like the main character in Click. I feel like my time is just fast forwarding on it's own, and every time I blink it's time for a test, it's time to turn in homework, then it's time for the finals. I'm blinking and my nieces and nephews are growing. I'm blinking and my fiance and I are celebrating 10 years together. I'm blinking and I'm now pushing 30? I blinked and little sister is graduating High School. Where is my time going?
Have I really taken for granted my life this far in and I haven't come close to completing my bucket list? I've been swept up with working, and going to school for the early years that I missed out on my life's milestones! It's a horrible feeling to know that I've put almost everything on a back burner! 
My Spring semester will come sooner than I hope, and it's going to be the busiest semester yet. Til then, I think I will enjoy every minute of my time. I will not hear anymore "I can't wait for next week, or next month" No more rushing time to watch a season premiere, or for an event like Christmas, or going to North Carolina. I will take every minute as though it were my last! 

Do you feel the same? Has time been slipping away from you? I love hearing from my readers, so drop me a line. If your a blogger, leave me your blog link so I can return the comment :)

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wedding Wednesday: Engagement Photo Shoot Ideas

Happy Wedding Wednesday! 
Lately I haven't been interested in wedding planning at all.  I just finished the semester, and I'm more concerned about getting some much needed R&R, before next year!
I was thinking about Engagement photo's, because Gil and I haven't done this yet. I'm still not quite sure if I want to spend the money on this, so it's still up in the air. 

I found some engagement photo's for inspiration, and I thought it was a fun idea to do a movie inspired engagement shoot. 

Here are a few I found to be very interesting.


The Notebook...
One of my all time favorite Love stories! I think it's everyone's favorite. I love this idea!

Mr. and Mrs. Smith....
I thought this would be funny idea, but not likely for us. 
\

Superman...
This is Gil's favorite super hero! So of course this is an option! 

The Great Gatsby...
I love the 1920's, and the love story is just epic! Every woman needs her a Jay Gatsby! 

Titanic...
Oh boy when this movie came out, I was in love! I think I watched it everyday for a year. That Rose made me mad when she let go of Jack though....lol

Disney's UP...
I love the beginning of this story! It's a classic, and a wonderful idea! 

That's all I have for today! Thanks for stopping by!


//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Monday, December 9, 2013

TalilaDesign GIVEAWAY

Hey there Monday! 

This Monday comes with a new and amazing giveaway for my readers! I'm very excited to introduce this giveaway sponsored by Talila from TalilaDesign

I have had the great pleasure of getting to know the shop owner of TalilaDesign...Talila, and she is so sweet! I loved her shop from the get go, and honestly couldn't wait to have her shop featured on my blog. Her Etsy shop TalilaDesign has a variety of affordable, and a beautiful selection of wedding jewelry. You could describe her wedding jewelry as unconventional, Victorian, and Gothic, for the unconventional bride. I love jewelry that have a vintage with a touch of Victorian style to it, which makes this shop one of my favorites. 

When I got the news that Talila was sending me a necklace from her shop, I think I did a little dance, and waited everyday in anticipation. Everyday without my Talila necklace was so blue, until one day I opened my mailbox to find a small envelope addressed to me. It was a feeling of pure excitement that I couldn't wait another minute...so I tore open the envelope and found this box with a beautiful bow wrapped around. Talila takes great care in making her jewelry, so you can imagine that she packs her jewelry with care as well. The way my necklace was packed with such care, just tells me that Talila takes pride in her handmade jewelry, and that it must be great quality!  Below are pictures of how the necklace was packaged as well as the way it looks. 

The necklace came in one piece, and in wonderful condition. The combination of colors all work well together. This necklace has a brass necklace, and tassel. The middle stone is a jade green, and is absolutely stunning in person. Around the jade gem it's surrounded by pink, and gold pearls. My favorite part of this necklace is the fact that it's outlined with green threading. It's amazing work, with great details. I love that this necklace has thread lining the pearls and jade gem, because I have sensitive skin, so the chance of irritation are slim!  The fact that I can wear this necklace without getting an irritation is a huge plus for me. 
Once I got the necklace, I couldn't help but wear it! I paired the necklace with a black tank, and grey sweater, but it really goes with just about anything. 

The quality of my necklace is grade A, and I would recommend my readers, and fellow brides to take a look around Talila's Etsy Shop...TalilaDesign. If your looking for bridesmaid gifts, this shop has wedding/bridal jewelry galore that would make beautiful gifts. 


This giveaway starts today  12/9/2013 at 4:00 PM, and ends 12/18/2013 at 11:59 PM.  Remember you MUST be a DIY Bride Follower VIA GCF to enter this giveaway!    
Winner will be announced on 12/19/2013 in the afternoon!! Good Luck everyone! 


48 hours to respond to email if won. Open Internationally/+18 ONLY review terms and conditions on rafflecopter.


a Rafflecopter giveaway



//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Friday, December 6, 2013

Follow Friday Link Up

Welcome to this week's Follow Friday Link Up!

Every Friday, you'll have the opportunity to link up your Bloglovin', Twitter, or Facebook profiles! The point of the Follow Friday Link Up is to network with bloggers, meet new friends, and gain more followers! I'm so excited to finally introduce this link up to you, and can't wait to get to know you more!
Follow Friday
 
{Note: We are currently looking for co-hosts to feature. If you're interested in co-hosting Follow Friday, please contact Alyssa!}

So, what are the rules?

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.) Follow your hosts
followfriday_hosts
Alyssa @ Lyss & Loveliness: Bloglovin' | Facebook | Twitter Jen @ Inspiration Sparks: Bloglovin' | Facebook | Twitter Laura @ Boone & Owl: Bloglovin' | Facebook | Twitter
2.) Follow your co-hosts
cohosts_12-7
Jess @ Sleepless in DIY Bride Country: Bloglovin' | Facebook | Twitter Kala @ The Wishful Lamb: Bloglovin' | Facebook | Twitter
3.) Link up using your Bloglovin', Facebook, or Twitter profiles
4.) Visit 3 other blogs and leave a comment on one of their posts!
5.) Tweet about Follow Friday to help us spread the word
6.) Grab a button and add it to you blog to show others where you party!

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Getting Ready for the Holiday's + WINNER

Last year I had so much fun getting ready for the Holidays. I love Christmas, but I don't like how they start advertising it earlier and earlier every year. It's not cool to start displaying Christmas things when we haven't finished celebrating Halloween. What's up with that? To me, it's like ordering an appetizer at your fav restaurant, and 5 seconds later your entree's come out! BLAH! 
My family is coming over to our house for Christmas again this year (probably because they had such a great time at our house last year :)) This is how I rolled out the red carpet for my guests last year.

1.  Bandit loves being apart of every holiday...lol He's always the center of attention during all our house parties. If your not down with Bandit, your not down with me :)

2. COOKIES!! Every party needs cookies. I wish I can say I bought these  cookies and displayed them at my party, but DISNEY always out do's any one's cookies. I had cookies from BJ's, but I am seriously thinking of making these cookies for our Christmas party this year. I'm pretty crafty, so we'll see how it goes! If anyone wants to share a gingerbread cookie recipe with me, please, please let me know! I really want to make these cookies into mickey gingerbread cookies. My families really picky, and always very apprehensive whenever I make anything. Which ticks me off, because I cook better than any them...lol I want to trick them this holiday season, and tell them "I bought these cookies" when really I baked them. So when they actually eat them, and like them...I'll be like BOMB I made these cookies you bunch of HATERS....LOL Help a sister out guys! I  need to prove these women wrong this year. 


 3. BREAD!! This is a picture I took of a bread I make every year around this time. I love it! It's easy, and delish! This one is called a Cranberry Orange Crusty Bread. I promise I'll share the recipe soon! If you have a French Oven, and don't like to kneed bread, then this recipe is the one for you!! 

4. The tree. I take great pride in my tree every year! I'm all about the bling, and pop so the tree always mirrors that. This year, I added so much more to my tree. We do have a fake tree, but only because I'm too frugal to buy a real tree every year. It's a waste of a perfectly good tree, and a waste of money. Real tree's that about the same height as my fake tree can range from $100 to 175 dollars a tree. That's here in the O-Town of Orlando. I can use that money to buy presents for the family. I got my ornaments from Target, Michael's, and Big Lots. I like to add to it every year, so I'll take some pictures of this years tree to show y'all. When I have children, Gil and I agreed that we'd change our ornaments and do themes for them. Until then I'm happy with the glittery browns, golds, champagnes, and silvers.

5. Last year the babe's and I had an interesting time putting up Christmas lights on our house for the first time. We both really want to put up lights because we hadn't in the past, and our block wasn't very festive. No one had lights up except on house, and that house isn't considered to be apart of our block. So Gil, and I made crazy trips to the store to figure out what we needed to cover our house in lights. Then there was that huge, ugly tree that was awkwardly placed on the side of our house. It made it ten times harder to put up lights...lol What a day! We basically missed the train on outside Christmas decorations as well, because we saw everything at the stores, and decided to get things later. When we went back to the store, everything was gone! So this year we kind of learned from that experience, and Gil got his snowman. 
6. I made this cute tree, which was an amazing find on Pinterest. It was really easy to make, and didn't cost more than $2. Everyone loved it, and by the time the night was over, the tree was more than half way finished. I think I'll make a post on how to make this. Basically you need a cone shaped steraphone, Hershey kisses, double-sided tape, ribbon, beads, etc. Whatever you feel you can add to it. I liked it, because it was so easy. 





It that time again...time to announce the winner of the Rakun Shop giveaway. Congrats to #256 Justyne M. has won the $50.00 Gift Card to Rakun Shop!

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

How WE Roll: To a Happy and Healthy Relationship?

Its Time by Imagine Dragons on Grooveshark
About a month ago, I was sitting in class talking to a few of my classmates during an assignment. It wasn't long before we all strayed off topic. Which wasn't hard given the boring topic, and at times I think my professors do this on purpose so they can take a break and let us talk. Some of the wonderful ladies that were sitting at my table began talking about their boyfriends. I'm a straight up listener. I love hearing other peoples stories before I tell my own, and my table had picked up on this. 

After a few classes, they were curious about my life. Since I haven't really shared anything deep or intimate they started asking question. 

The first one..."when's the wedding date?". Y'all know it's next year, but I haven't released it yet because I wanted to sign the contract with my venue before telling anyone. 

Secondly "how long have you been together?". Y'all should know by now, that my fiance and I have been together for 10 years. When they found out how many years we'd been together, I promise their jaws dropped. 

Which lead to the next question..."How old are you?" lol I love this question, really I do! When I said how old I was (28) they looked baffled. Which made me 18 when I began dating my fiance. The interrogation was on, and they were not letting me off the hook. 

Then my favorite question..."How do you keep your relationship healthy?" I think at this point they wanted to pick my brain. I've heard all their stories about the boys they dated, and what not so I think they were truly looking for advice.

It made me think, how do we keep a relationship healthy and happy? If these women have had their hardships in relationships, and needed to know what the secret to a healthy and happy relationship was, what was I to say? In some cases, this is a woman's opportunity to hold her head high, lie, and get some sort of satisfaction that she indeed has concurred something these other women have not. Of course, I had a satisfaction that my fiance and I have made it this far, and it was a great triumph, but I wasn't about to become a liar to get the recognition.  How could I explain it without making it seem like sunshine and rainbows, as well as not scare them away from love altogether? 

It would be arrogant for me to state that my fiance and I are "one of the lucky ones", because to be honest we're far from it...lol Yes, we're lucky...very lucky to not have ripped off each others heads by now. Lucky to understand when it's time to walk away. Lucky to have seen our parents getting divorced, which then transferred into our relationship, making it one of the slowest relationships to develop. Lucky to be on the same page when it came to getting married. Lucky to have met through my sister and his cousin. Lucky that we both have a LOVE for food. Lucky that we're both lazy bums. Lucky that were both secure with ourselves, and our relationship, that we don't need to spend every waking moment together. Lucky that I finally learned how to cook his favorite meals. Lucky that were both patient with each other. Lucky to have tested each others nerves in and out, until finally agreeing we knew what we're both getting into after 10 years together...lol   I mean if I'm being truthful, these are all TRUE, and RAW facts. 

So what did I end up telling these awesome, and beautiful women sitting at my table, and by now half the class? 

 It takes two to build a relationship. I wouldn't be able to keep a relationship going if my other half wasn't there to help. I learned that every couple goes through their issues, whether they want to admit it or not. It may be easy in the beginning, but as time goes on...things start to change, people change, situations change. It happens, and you have to roll with the punches.
It's your relationship, and if both parties believe your love is worth fighting for, than that's half the battle there! Build your relationship together, the way you both see fit. No one else has a right to judge it, or pressure it. 
Believe it or not even though Gil and I completed 10 years,  I've been told by several women that it isn't the same as marriage? lol WHAT!
Excuse me, NO, no, honey, it's the same as marriage to me! It's the same as marriage to me, because even though it's probably been way too long without nuptials, we've been through all the same up and downs, as those with a piece of paper that states "marriage license".  That's how we roll, your relationship can roll a different way!  

That's how we roll y'all, how do y'all roll? I love hearing from my readers. Whether your new, old, offended, humored, loved, blogger, giveaway entry, guest, googler...whatever it may be, drop me a line!
//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Anyone else having problems with "Grab my button" codes?



Hey all bloggy friends,

 For some time now, I've been having problems with the "grab my button" codes! What's up with that? Has anyone found a solution? I was originally using the "grab my code" generator because it was easier than just coding yourself. I thought this website had problems, so I tried coding it myself. I tried a few beautiful handmade codes, and when I put it into the HTML widget in blogger, it still doesn't take! I'm pretty good with codes, and now I think it's blogger's fault. Anyone have the same problem? Has anyone solved it? Please help, I haven't had a button on my blog for a while now.

//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//

#3 Bloggy Addiction: D.E.S.I.G.N

Hi, my name is Jess, and I'm addicted to blogging. 

From the moment I hit that "New Blog" button, and Published my first post, I had no idea how much my life would change. Blogging has become a part of me in every way.

As stated in my previous post #2 Clueless B.L.O.G.G.E.R. I talked about how your blog should represent you! Which means, let's talk design. I've been asked in the past by other bloggers, to help them out for free. I think at first I was reluctant, but then I changed my whole view. Of course, I wanted to charge for blog designs because it's time consuming, and my creativity was at use. Then I began thinking, you know what...I was a beginner in the the boggy scene and not a lot of other blogs wanted to help me out. So here I am, here to help with design. I took down my blog design "business" because I really don't have the time for it, and because I liked helping the bloggers who were new and needed the help.

Here's what you should consider for blog design

1. YOU. Your blog should represent who you are. To me, my blog is my internet home. I want my guests to feel my personality and feel welcomed in my internet home. Just like my house...when my guests walk into my house, I want them to feel comfortable. I want them to see my style through colors, furniture and decorations. 

2. COLOR. Figure out what your color combo is. It can be more that two colors. Just as long as everything is consistent. The colors should be one of the first things your pick, but if your a scattered brain like me, and need to see every color together before picking your final colors, start a color board. 

3. FONT. Font is so important, because it attracts readers. If your header has amazing font, that's different from the others and stands out, readers want to stay and look around your blog. I personally love fonts. When I click around during blog hops, I love finding blogs with amazing font! 
You could find most of the awesome fonts on Dafont.com

4. ELEMENTS. You will need certain tools for your blog design. When I first started, I used picmonkey because it's free, and easy to use. Now I've upgraded to Adobe Photoshop Elements 12, and I also have Adobe's Creative Suite. It's expensive software but so worth it in the end. Personally, I use Elements for absolutely everything unless, I need to do something more in depth. 
PicMonkey

5. HEADER. This is a given! You need a header. The header is the most important, because it's the first thing readers see. So more creativity and design should go into your header. When I click on a blog, I look for something to catch my eye. Which would include font, color, and design. If the header is interesting, then I continue to read. The name of your blog should be in your header. 

6. ABOUT ME. Every blog needs an about me part on their sidebar, and page. I can't tell you how many times, I've come across blogs that don't have an about me picture on their sidebar. This annoys me, because I want to get to know the blogger that I stumbled upon. If I can't find your name anywhere on your blog, then there's a problem. I won't follow you, or continue to read your blog. I'll just move on. If you don't have one, then I think you must not care to share anything about yourself to me or the public. Then I start thinking, "whats the point of having a public blog, if your not sharing anything?" Which means, you won't be sharing much about your life with your readers. It also annoys me because if I'm a new reader, and lets say you have shared your life in past posts....I'm not going back to every single post to read about you and your life. Give me a crash course! Readers want to learn about who you are, what you like, etc. The about me pic and page is important, don't forget it!! 

7. BUTTON. You should have a button to share with other bloggers. When I link my blog during linkups or blog hops I love to use my button. The more I share my button the more recognition I get from other bloggers, which leads them to my blog. The button should be a reflection of you and your blog. I add my design elements on my button to keep everything consistent.

I use to use this website "Grab my Button" Code Generator, but recently it hasn't been working properly. Maybe they're working on fixing it. Just design you button, an upload to photobucket. Get the Direct URL for the button to add and it'll make the "Grab my Button" code for you. 

8. SOCIAL MEDIA BUTTONS. You need these, and designing them is so much fun...lol It can be a pain, but they add that bang your blog needs. I was so desperate to have these in the beginning. I searched Google forever until I figured out how to finally make my own social media buttons. 

These are the buttons I started with. Right click the buttons you want and save the image. You could also just click on the image and then save it. However you want. First I downloaded a black white page. Just google blank page and download it. Upload it to picmonkey. Once you have a blank page on picmonkey go to overlay. Upload the button you want as an overlay. Once you have it as an overlay you have change the colors. Whatever you want to do with it. You repeat those steps for each of the buttons you want. 

Next upload each of your designed buttons to Photobucket. Below you'll find a box that has an HTML code, direct URL code, etc. You'll need the Direct URL code for these. 

Once you have a design, and have uploaded them to photobucket you would use this code.

The second code can be used for all the rest of the social media buttons. Instead of "Follow me on Bloglovin'" change the bloglovin' part and add the social media name to it. 
You could use this code for all the social media except the mail. 
Once you got this down, all the rest of the elements of design are exactly the same as the buttons. 

9. TABS. I personally love seeing different kinds of tab bars! This is the part that names your pages. It adds a lot to a blog, if you ask me. I recommend doing one if you have the time. 

10. SIDEBAR TABS. I love sidebar tabs. There are so many out there to be honest. They had personality to your blog, and they're really easy to make. They take the most time, but they're awesome! Invest your time with these sidebar tabs. 

11. FAVICON. I love these things. The favicon is the icon in the corner of the tabs on your Internet "app" I use Chrome, so on Chrome it pops up in tabs. Instead of the orange blogger icon, you can personalize your own icon. It adds personality to your blog. I currently have an anchor, because in the beginning of my design I used an anchor in my header. I think I may change it to something else. 

12. SIGNATURE. After every post bloggers use their signature to end a post. I love this! It makes me feel like they're talking to me. The signature can be your own name, your blogs name, or last name, etc. Whatever you decide you want. I use my own name, and blog name together...xoxo, Jess DIY Bride. I also use clickable social media buttons with my signature, in case someone loves my posts and wants to follow me, or contact me through my social media. This is optional, but in the past I've had readers email me and tell me how easy it was for them to contact me. Notice, I kept my signature close to my design. Everything consistent. 

13. POST ARCHIVE. I majority of bloggers, don't display their archive on their blogs. Which is weird, because if I like a blog enough, I start exploring past posts. If you don't care to display your archive, I recommend you having an app that shows your past posts.

I use Engageya, because I like the pretty circles. It looks nice, and clean. With Engageya they customize each one of your posts. Meaning after this post is done and posted, at the button Engageya will add other posts that are similar to this post. Really cool. Another app you could use, (I've used before as well) is LinkWithin. I liked it, and it did almost the same thing. I liked the design better with Engageya.

14. POP. When you first click on to a blog, think of the first thing that catches your eye. I use glitter as my pop, and personality. I LOVE me some glitter! Can't you tell? It doesn't have to be glitter, but something that stands out. 

I have helped others get started, and if you need any help I will be more than happy to help you get started. It's really about playing around with what you like, and putting it all together. If you want your blog to be professionally done, I know a few blog designers that are amazing, and great to work with.

Here are some great blog designers: They all have great creativity and I would def recommend using them if you don't care to design your own blog. 

Noor from Noor's Blog Designs
Brianna from Beloved Designs
Sarah from Social and Chic
Marquis from Clarke Creative


//MEET THIS MONTHS SPONSORED GLAMOUR IN POST SHOP SPOTLIGHT//