The Case For Being A Quitter

No, It’s not the Pinterest or Instagram quote you’d expect but I’m making the case for quitting. Quitting in the sense of making a purposeful decision to let something go or move in a new direction. I don’t mean simply giving up because something is hard, you’re stuck, or experiencing a challenging time. However, I do think we all need permission to quit spinning our wheels on something that isn’t a good fit.

quit your day job

 

I have a little experience with this myself. In fact, if I wouldn’t have been a quitter I probably wouldn’t have a career I love and a creative outlet (this blog) that fuels my passions. In 2007 I started a stationery company selling personalized stationery online and in retail locations across the country. I went all in for one solid year. And then, in spite of having built a profitable little business, I quit. I shut down the printers and closed all of my accounts. Took my little “Good Thoughts Paper Co.” offline. (more…)

Peanut Butter Breakfast Parfait

This post is sponsored by ConAgra Foods.
breakfast parfait recipe

About three months ago, I completely revamped my eating habits and daily diet. The truth is, I was eating out way too often and finding myself grabbing whatever was on hand from the fridge or in the pantry when hunger would strike (which often wasn’t a very healthy choice). One of the biggest changes I made that has helped me eat much healthier is to prepare meals and snacks on the weekend for the upcoming week. If this sounds familiar and you want to eat out less, eat in more, and feel healthier overall, I encourage you to check out The Great American Cook In Challenge (don’t worry there are lots of tips and recipes to make it simple!).

I’m eating in a lot and I never skip breakfast anymore. It really is the most important meal of the day (duh, I was totally ignoring that little fact).This recipe is much healthier and much more delicious than grabbing a pastry at the coffee shop or running through a drive-through on the way to work. Trust me!

parfait recipesIn fact, it’s almost too delicious to call breakfast. Which is great because it makes a great snack any time of the day. The ingredients (see them below in the recipe) are easy to keep stocked. Having versatile staple ingredients on hand in the kitchen is really the best tip I have for becoming better at eating in. (more…)

Simple Strawberry Shortcake Donuts


This post is sponsored by Philadelphia Cream Cheese.

strawberry shortcake donut

I’ve been on a donut-making kick lately because you can make so many variations and they are pretty easy to make. Especially if you’re like me and you take shortcuts. I love baking but don’t have a lot of time, so I often think of ways I can make recipes easier and faster. These strawberry shortcake donuts were so simple to whip up! I decided to make them for a brunch I recently had. A few friends and I gathered one Saturday morning to visit and have a little time just chatting over coffee. These donuts went perfectly with our tea and coffee, and they were simple enough to whip up that morning before guests arrived.

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My secret weapon for homemade donuts is boxed cake mix. I pick a flavor (here I used pink velvet) and then jazz it up a little. By placing sliced strawberries right into the batter, I made these donuts seem extra special. (more…)

DIY Rose Water Face Mist

Truth is, sometimes we all need a little mood-booster in our day. If you’ve ever found yourself wishing for a timeout or reset button, this rose water spray  is going to be your BFF. Think of it as a little refreshing pick-me-up. I never knew I loved a good face mist so much before.

rose water spray

With Mother’s Day right around the corner, this would make an easy and thoughtful gift for those hard-working mommas in your life. (Just be sure to make one to keep for yourself!)

diy rose water face mist

I think the tag just makes this an adorable gift. Be sure to grab your free printable tags below!

I was inspired to figure out how to make this rose water spray after I had bought a small bottle at Anthropologie.  I found my mood being instantly boosted each time I spritzed by face and took in a deep breath. But there little bottle was nearly $20 so I decided to make my own.  (more…)

Serve It :: Simple Olive Cheese Bread Bites


This post is sponsored by Philadelphia Cream Cheese.

If you’ve never made olive cheese bread before, I hope this simple recipe changes your mind.

Olive Bread Recipe

This recipe only has four ingredients, which makes it super simple to whip up the next time you have friends over. All you need is: bread, black and green olives, Monterey Jack cheese, and Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Why Philadelphia Cream Cheese, you ask? Because it’s made with fresh milk, real cream, and no preservatives. I always have some on hand and nothing else tastes like it!

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I use a food processor to turn the whole black and green olives into the perfectly diced olive confetti.

Olive Bread Recipe

In a bowl, combine the diced olives, monterey jack cheese, and Philadelphia Cream Cheese and mix well. You can continue making the appetizer, or prepare the spread ahead of time and store (covered) in the refrigerator until you’re ready to make the apps.

When ready, spread olive mixture onto small sliced of bread (about 1 tablespoon for each piece). Top with a little shredded monterey jack cheese. Pop them into an oven preheated at 350 degrees and bake for 10 minutes.

Olive Bread Recipe

These olive bread bites are great to serve to a crowd. Pass a tray around and everyone will be happy. The saltiness of the olives pairs perfectly with the natural and fresh taste of the cream cheese. So delicious!

Olive Bread Recipe

 

Olive Cheese Bread Bites
 
Prep time

Total time

 

Created By:
Serves: Serves: 8 servings (3 appetizers = 1 serving)

Ingredients
  • 1 sourdough baguette, sliced into 24 slices
  • 1 6-oz can black olives
  • 1 6-oz can pimento stuffed green olives
  • 1 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 8-oz. brick PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese Spread, softened

To Make
  1. Drain olives and finely chop them. In a medium bowl, mix olives, ¾ cup of the monterey jack cheese, and brick of cream cheese. Once mixed, spread one tablespoon onto each piece of bread. Top with a sprinkle of the remaining monterey jack cheese. Back on a baking sheet for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

phily

For quick and easy entertaining, turn to Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Always have it on hand to create fun appetizers and desserts that pop. I had a great time developing my Variety Crostini Platter for a get-together with friends. For more creamy, delicious recipe ideas, click here.

Want more simple recipes? Join my email list (below) to receive new posts to your inbox.


Building A Brand: Pretty Pictures Will Only Get You So Far

If you’re using social media, specifically Instagram and Pinterest, to grow your blog or business or as a key factor in building a brand, then you’ve probably spent a lot of time thinking about your visual imagery. And although having compelling, distinctive, and quality imagery is a big key to success on these platforms, I want to go a little deeper.

Your Instagram and Pinterest must be more than just a pretty face. 

There I said it. There is more to these platforms than looks–it’s called engagement.

build a brand online

We’ve talked about how to increase Instagram engagement recently in response to Instagram’s new algorithm update (spoiler alert: I’m not worried about it), so I won’t get into tactics here. Engagement is what’s going to set your Instagram and Pinterest presence apart from others. Engagement is what will move the bar for your blog, brand, and business. So let’s take a moment to break down what engagement looks like on each of these platforms. (more…)

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