#30SummerDays Camera Giveaway!

Camera Giveaway

Camera Giveaway

UPDATE 7/13: Giveaway is now closed and we’ve contacted the winner! Thanks to all who entered. Keep an eye out for more fun giveaways coming up!

How is your summer so far? Hope you’re having lots of sunny, happy adventures — and today we’ve got a giveaway to help you document them all! You might have noticed during the month of June on Twitter and Instagram that I was sharing photos using the hashtag #30summerdays. The fine folks at Staples sent a few bloggers the Samsung NX300 camera to tote around during their summer days, and I was lucky enough to get to try it out! We used the Samsung to document our comings and goings, and all of the summery things we did. And you can win the exact same camera!

Camera Giveaway

The Samsung is pretty rad — my number one, favorite thing about it is how light and small it is compared to my usual Canon that I haul around. It’s also totally user-friendly. I was able to figure out the functions by just experimenting and using the touch-screen to alter settings. On top of all that, it’s got WiFi capability (you can email photos right from the camera!) and if you download the iPhone app, photos from the Samsung sync directly to your phone. It’s awesome. The photo quality is great, and it’s totally cute to boot. Perfect for traveling and snapping photos of your adventures!

Camera Giveaway

Camera Giveaway

So let’s get down to it! One of you lucky dolls will win your very own Samsung NX300. See the Rafflecopter below for entry and giveaway rules; there are lots of ways to enter, and the more you enter the better your chances of winning this bad boy! Giveaway open to U.S. Residents only. Big thanks to Staples for helping us document our summer days!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy 4th & A Long Weekend

sparkler

Taking off a bit early this week to celebrate the 4th! What are you doing to celebrate? I know we just got back from our Hawaii trip, but I’ll never turn down a three day weekend. So we’ll be soaking up some sun, sharing time with pals, and being thankful for the freedoms that we so often take for granted. Hope you all have a happy and safe 4th, whatever you’re up to! xoxo

Baby Stuff // 1

baby stuff

Maybe because you have inquiring minds? Maybe because I’m an oversharer? Or maybe because I didn’t have anything else better to say today? Who knows. But this is what’s going on with me and the little buddy this week. xoxo

WEEK 18.

EATING fruit. Just fruit, all day long. I’ve been going through about one watermelon a week (literally taking a break to go to the fridge right now for a bite… okay I’m back) along with lots of berries. It’s a chore to eat veggies but you gotta do what you gotta do.

DRINKING water. Oh my gosh the water. There’s probably a swimming pool in my stomach. Upside — I think it’s helping clear my skin, which has been a major bugger.

READING Bringing Up Bébé

WANTING the reflux to stop. My esophagus feels like a lava lamp.

SLEEPING with more and more pillows every night. We’re up to three now. At this rate, I’ll need a pillow budget for the third trimester.

WEARING anything that’s stretchy! For the first few weeks I was wearing loose tops and trying to hide the squishy non-bump bump, but now that it’s a little bigger I actually look less fat in tighter stuff. Go figure.

FEELING ready for the next phase — a new place to live, a focus on the new little buddy, new adventures.

LOVING when Mr. Lovely puts his hand on the bump. It always catches me by surprise because I forget it’s there. Baby is just kind of a concept right now so anything that makes it feel more real sometimes catches me off guard.

DIY 4th of July Sparkler Packs

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sparklers1

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Since the 4th of July is this weekend, I have a split-second DIY for you! It’s just a simple printable, but it would be super fun at your 4th of July celebrations if you’re a sparkler-kind-of-person. And let’s be real, I think anybody reading this here blog is a sparkler-kind-of-person. This is so easy!

Materials

Make Time: 30 Minutes

Okay! So here’s the printable — just download it, and I’d recommend taking it to an office supply store to print it. It’ll need to be printed on 11×17 paper, and it’s best if the paper has a good weight to it. I printed at Office Depot on 100 lb paper and I was in and out in about 5 minutes.

Once you have the paper printed, cut out each sparkler pack.

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Use a ruler and a craft knife to make two small horizontal slits in the center of each pack.

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Slide your sparklers in and you’re ready to party!

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Obviously we had to go outside at night and take some crazy sparkler photos, duh. I think these little packs would be so cute set out during fireworks time at your 4th of July bash. Heck, use ‘em at any party! And I have to say it — any time you’re lighting up a sparkler, just use caution. I remember one 4th of July when I was about 8, my sweater caught on fire and my uncle grabbed me and spit on my sleeve to put it out before I even realized what happened. So don’t catch anything on fire unless you want your uncle to spit on you. Or something. Have fun! xoxo

4th of July Sparklers

4th of July Sparklers

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sparklers

Travel Oahu // Planes, Hotels, and Cars

Oahu Travel

Oahu Travel

Oh man. The week after a vacation is tough, isn’t it? While we’re diligently working to get our brains out of beach mode and back into work mode, I wanted to share some more of our Hawaii trip! I always look to blogs for the ins and outs of a place when I’m traveling, so hopefully this will be of some help.

We stayed at the Shoreline Waikiki, which is a Joie de Vivre hotel. Have you heard of them? It’s a group of boutique hotels, and each one in each town is a little different (We stayed in The Citizen, another Joie de Vivre hotel, during our wedding in Sacramento and fell in love with it.) The Shoreline’s got a really cool beach-meets-midcentury feel, and had so many great little touches. I think literally every time I passed through the lobby I grabbed a cup of their fresh pineapple iced tea. I loved being out on our little balcony to watch the sunrises (and look at the balconies from below — such fun colors!).

Oahu Travel

Oahu Travel

Oahu Travel

It was also a perfect location – just a few minute’s walk from the beach, restaurants, shopping, and more. If you’re heading to Oahu definitely check it out. Quick tip! Lots of the parking in Waikiki is limited or very pricey, but we were always able to find free parking on Ala Wai, a few blocks from the beach. Just be careful with the street cleaning times and be sure you don’t get towed. Ahem…

Just a few more tips we learned this trip! We found a crazy good rate on Allegiant Air out of LAX. On our flight from LAX to Honolulu we learned why. Allegiant has teeny tiny seats, makes you board insanely early, makes you pay for carry-ons, and has zero complimentary food or beverages in flight. Like, not even water. You pay for it all. So! If you want to fly Allegiant, no problem. Pay the few bucks for a seat upgrade with some space. Share a single checked bag and don’t take a carry on (they allow personal items that are small-ish for no fee). Bring an empty bottle and fill it with water before you board. Bring snacks as well. And wait until the last minute to board. Our flight back was perfectly comfortable, and affordable!

Finally, we wanted to be able to zip around the island in a car, so we rented one. The best price by far was on Priceline, with the name-your-price option. We were able to beat other rental companies by about half. Sweet! It’s an easy pickup at the Honolulu airport, and you’ve got your own set of wheels.

I’m still sorting through a zillion photos and putting together lots of recommendations for food and fun stuff to do, so stay tuned for more! Have a beautiful week. xoxo

Oahu Travel

Oahu Travel

Happy Friday + Pieces of Hawaii

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We have one more day on Oahu and we’re gonna make the most of it! Mr. Lovely and I have been having a pretty swell time, running around the island hiking and beaching and exploring. Thought I’d share a few early snaps from our phones, while we are soaking up our remaining time here. Catch up with me and the husb on Instagram to follow our final photos. Hope you guys have a beautiful summer weekend! xoxo

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oahu

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oahu

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

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DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

Still having so much fun with indigo shibori dyeing! I dip dyed this fabric when I went on a shibori bender a few weeks back and didn’t really know what I would be doing with it. But a few days ago I got all inspired and decided to dust off my (extremely minimal) embroidery skills! I’m kinda digging the old school embroidery vibe mixed with the tie dye feel. It’s like crafty worlds colliding.

Materials

  • white fabric (flour sack material works great)
  • indigo dye kit
  • bucket
  • waterproof drop cloth
  • embroidery thread
  • embroidery needle
  • embroidery hoop
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • glue gun

Make Time: 2 Hours (plus drying time) for dyeing; 1 Hour for embroidery

If you’d like to do the project with hand dyed fabric, follow the dyeing tutorial from this post. Once the fabric is dyed, cleaned, and dry, gather your embroidery materials.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

Insert the fabric into the hoop (this hoop is 8″), being sure that the area of fabric you’d like to feature is centered in the hoop. Pull the fabric taut on all edges. Tighten the screw on the hoop and keep pulling the fabric until it’s tight.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

Cut around the edges of the hoop so that there’s about an inch of fabric overhanging it.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

With a pencil, lightly sketch on the words or image you’d like to embroider.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

I used a sort of variation on a back stitch. Thread your needle and knot the ends of the thread together. Starting behind the fabric, make a tiny stitch at the start of one letter. Then come back up through the fabric about halfway through your first stitch. Continue in the same way, making a chain. When you get to the end of your embroidery, knot the thread behind the fabric and snip your thread.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

Readjust your fabric in the hoop if needed. Finally, spread a thin line of hot glue around the back side of the inner hoop and press the excess fabric into it so that it’s tucked behind the hoop.

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

This one took some time but I love knowing that it’s hand-dyed fabric and hand-embroidered as well. I spent a good amount of time deciding what words to use, too — I wanted something lovely but something that wouldn’t take ten years to embroider, ya know? Sensible. I’d love to know what you’d put on it! xoxo

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery

DIY Indigo Dyed Embroidery