Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Easter!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Easter weekend! I finally have two days off and can enjoy the beautiful weather we're having. The sunsets are absolutely gorgeous right now ... the photos I take do not do them justice! The Easter bunny also stopped by our apartment early and brought us a planter full of perennials and some yummy chocolate Easter eggs. I have also started playing around with the aspect ratio of my photos on Instagram -- what do you think? You can view my instagram feed here. It took me a little while, but once I figured out how to do it, it was rather simple. 

If you want me to share how to get this 16:9 aspect ratio, leave a comment and I will be sure to share my secrets!

Happy Easter!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Friday's Letters.

Dear Good Friday, I am so happy that you are here! I am quite exhausted after the past two days and need a day off! Wednesday I ended up staying at work late and didn't get home until just before 8:00 pm. And Thursday, that was a very long, long day! I worked from 9:00 am - 1:00 pm at one job, and 3:00 pm - 11:00 pm at my other job. Thankfully D agreed to come along with me to the second job as we had a large event that night. Dear March, where did you go? I know I say this every month, but crap, time is flying by too fast! Dear Sunshine, please don't go away! I am loving all this beautiful weather!

...that's all I got for now, I am too tired and should be sleeping, not blogging! =]


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Guest Post ... Heather from Fiery & Opinionated.

Confession… I've never written a guest post before. Being new-ish to blogging, I don't really know the 'rules' for this sort of thing. But I love Life Unpublished and was so excited by the invitation that i had to give it a try!

After asking her what i should write, Chelsea said she really enjoyed my post about what i learned about myself when my boyfriend, chris, moved in. That was one of my favorites, too. I probably get more enjoyment than I should out of making fun of myself (and him).  Unfortunately for Chris, today I'll only be making fun of him.

Chris is completely useless at finding things. I know men in general aren't good at finding things, but seriously mine is the worst.

'have you seen my sneakers?'
'do you know where my red sox hat is?'
'where is the trail mix?'

… fill in the blank. The kid finds nothing on his own. If he needs to lift something to find it? Forget it. Even in plain sight things can still be lost.

One of my recent favorites involved an iPhone charger. We were staying in a tiny studio apartment temporarily after our cross-country move and he 'lost' his phone charger. 'What did you do with my iPhone charger?' were his exact words. Excuse me? I have one of my own, thank you - I did not touch your charger. He was unconvinced. I had to go to work, so I left him there looking for it - sure it couldn't be THAT hard in a place that was a 14'x14' box.

how do you not find something in here?

A few hours into work he gchats me asking where I think he should look for it. Ok, now I'm getting annoyed. Where am I possibly going to tell him to look that he wouldn't think to check? The place is tiny! But I caved… 'look on the coffee table, look under things on the coffee table, look under the coffee table, look in your backpack…'

And then he finds it. Plugged into the wall next to the couch. Right where he sits to work from home. Of all places you'd look for something you plug into the wall to send electricity to an electronic device, surely one would check the electrical outlet.

We promptly made a rule that he has to actually try to look for things first before asking me again.

Thanks so much to chelsea for having me today!

Thanks Heather for taking over my blog today!! 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekly Wrap-Up.

I recently stumbled upon this "weekly wrap-up" post idea on one of the blogs that I follow and immediately fell in love with it! I did, however, make a few slight adjustments and included my weekly menu planning. I love the idea of a single post to recap a few of my favorite instagram photos, blog posts, blogs, what's been going on in my life, and of course, what we've been eating for dinners. So, without further ado, here is my FIRST weekly wrap-up. 

Favorite Snapshots:
+ Love, love, love my dog! He loves to shake a paw for a treat.
+ Went for a walk around the neighborhood -- we are so lucky to live near the ocean and to have such a beautiful view!
+ Doing some exercise with our new exercise band.
+ Snow in March? Really?!

for more snapshots, follow me on instagram.

Favorite Posts:
+ Balsamic Chicken with Spinach & Peppers by I Don't Go to the Gym.
+ Homemade Laundry Detergent & Wash Jar by The Paper Mama.
+ DIYs to try this Weekend by Paper & Stitch.
+ Free Printable Labels by A Thrifty Mrs

Favorite Blog of the Week:
+ Fiery and Opinionated - not only am I lucky to have her on my sidebar, I absolutely love to read Heather's blog because she always has something funny to say. She also takes some pretty sweet photos! You should stop by her blog and get to know her! 

Life Lately:
+ Started our spring cleaning over the weekend and have now have a huge pile of clothes to donate. I still have so many more clothes that I could donate, but aren't ready to let them go yet. 
+ Participated in earth hour on Saturday. Lights out for one hour! I enjoyed lighting a bunch of candles and hanging out..! It was kind of romantical, LOL.
+ Trying to reduce our carbon footstep around the house. It's amazing what a little white vinegar can do! I am hoping to make our own laundry soap soon.

Weekly Dinner Menu: Work is exceptionally busy for me right now, so D has been pitching in with cooking dinners. On Friday he made one of our favorite meals in the slow cooker, Goulash. Yum! I was going to share the recipe in a post, but he insisted he take better photos. 

+ Monday: Mac and Cheese & Salad.
+ Tuesday: Teriyaki Chicken, Potatoes & Salad.
+ Wednesday: Beef Stroganoff.
+ Thursday: Leftovers - Beef Stroganoff & Salad.
+ Friday: Goulash & Pasta.
+ Saturday: Leftovers - Goulash & Pasta.
+ Sunday: Leftovers - Goulash & Potatoes.

Monday Motivation.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday's Letters.

Dear weather, what gives with the snow this morning? Didn't you get the memo that it's spring now?! Anyways, I'm glad you didn't stick around for very long! Dear boyfriend, thank you for making dinner tonight - you really outdid yourself. Yum, yum, yum in my tummy! Dear blog, I'm sorry, but I think I may be tweaking your design yet again. We'll see how much spare time I have. Dear work, I cannot wait until the next few weeks are over! So much to do, not enough time. Some days I feel like I need to clone myself so that I can get all this work done. Dear boyfriend (again!), I was serious about wanting an Easter egg hunt next weekend - please and thank you! Dear self, you need to get back into your early bedtime routine because you're really slacking on the exercise! Dear blog friends, any good suggestions of places to buy dresses online? I am having a tough time finding the perfect dress for a wedding I have to go to this summer.


Thursday, March 21, 2013

My Handsome Dog.

Over at Fiery and Opinionated, Heather was talking about wanting to get a dog and how she is going to be such a bad dog person. I had a good laugh at her post, but I have to admit, her last sentence really made me laugh out loud...
"oh, and if chris and i start referring to ourselves as 'mom' and 'dad' to the dog… you have full permission to punch me in the face."
I say that because that's totally what's happened with my family dog, Dakota. If I were to tell him to go find Donna or Duncan, I don't think he would have any idea who they are because to him, they are Mom and Dad. He also shares a bedroom with them - he sleeps in one half of the room, them in the other half. Every morning, he wakes them up at 5:00 am so that he can climb into bed next to them. For the first few years, he would snuggle up to his mom, even position himself to lie around the top of her head; but lately, he's  become quite a Daddy's boy and always has to lay next to him in the morning.

Anyways, Heather's post inspired me to share a few photos of my pup when he was just a handsome little boy. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Color Inspiration // Mint.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

Now that it's spring, I thought it was time to share my second color inspiration board -- the color mint! Mint is one of those colors that I love to look at, but for some strange reason, I don't own anything with this color. I am personally loving this mint dress, but I am hesitant because I don't think mint is "my color." What do you think of this color? 

All images are linked to my pinterest account (which are then linked to their original sources). If you want to follow me on pinterest, here is a link to my pinterest boards. Leave me a comment with your pinterest account and I'll follow you back!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Three Tips.

1 // 2 // 3

1 // Bowl as iPhone speaker. Place your iPhone in a bowl and turn up the volume -- the concave shape of the bowl will amplify the sound coming from your iPhone. Brilliant, absolutely brilliant! And a heck of a lot cheaper than buying a device to do the same thing (which we may have done a few moths ago...)!

2 // Keeping your matching sheets together. Tuck your sheet set inside one of the pillow cases and stack according to size. Simple trick, I mean, really simple. Another benefit, your linens closet will be ten times more organized. 

3 // Label your power cords. Ever need to unplug a device from behind your entertainment unit, or behind your computer?! All the cords look the same and half the time you end up unplugging the wrong cord (I do at least). Solution? Using those colorful bread tags you have collecting in a drawer, put a label at both ends of every wire and cable. Such a great idea to help keep your cords in order.

Hope you find these three tips useful! Since living on my own, I am all for saving money and finding ways to make my life easier. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

I woke up this morning with my Spouse?!!

I was browsing through my Facebook news feed this afternoon and found an interesting post from CBC News:
"Did you go to bed with your partner last night, and wake up this morning with your spouse?"
In British Columbia, common-law couples as good as married after living together for 2 years. Technically, we've only been living together for 8 months, but we've been together for almost 6 years. And during the past 3 years or more, we've spent pretty much most days (when not at work) and nights together. I know it doesn't count, but needless to say, we've both been having some fun teasing each other with this news! 

Monday Motivation.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

What I'm Wearing // New Spring Clothes.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4

Today I went shopping with my mom and splurged on a few new items. I'm a huge fan of anything pink, white and black. I also got the Sheer Chiffron Shirt in royal blue (hopefully I will wear it). The button down shirts and the white pants are work clothes for job #1, while the t-shirts are just for fun and to wear at job #2. These new clothes should hold me over until summer, hopefully by then I will have ditched a few pounds... hello 30 Day Shred (attempt #3)!

Hope everyone had a great weekend and St. Patrick's Day!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Cheers to the Fricken' Weekend!

What are your plans for this weekend? It's St. Patrick's day on Sunday! Anyways, thank goodness its Friday! This week was beyond crazy for me, so I am looking forward to hopefully a relaxing day at work tomorrow (yep, I work six days/week) and a much needed day off on Sunday. Instead of my regular Friday's Letters today, I thought I would share a few of my favorite links this past week (or two)...!

+ I love, love bloglovin' and being able to organize all the blogs I follow. But I'm a little confused -- earlier this evening, I had 190 odd followers, now its says I only have 100. What the heck? Has anybody else noticed this on theirs? 

+ I am going shopping on Sunday and will probably spend way too much at this store. I am loving all of their new Spring 2013 arrivals. 

+ Heather posted about her experience with putting olive oil in her hair to help with dryness from blow drying and straightening. Have you ever tried this? I think I may have to try it over Easter weekend! 

+ Lemon Chicken Romano, oh this looks so delicious! I also love all the recipes on Cooking Classy! 

+ Fonts, fonts, fonts. I am addicted to this. 50 Fonts | Best for Wedding Invitations. I only booked marked this link because I love finding fonts. Not all are free, but some are! 

+ Table for Two is my second new favorite go-to-site for finding new recipes. 

+ I think I should go and buy some essential oils for the next time I get a bad headache! Much better than popping lots of pills! 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

For Bloggers // How to Switch from Google Reader to Bloglovin'.

As I am sure you have heard by now, Google has announced that they will be saying goodbye to Google Reader, effective July 1, 2013. Eeeek! 

As requested, I have put together a simple tutorial to show you how to import your current Google Reader feed into Bloglovin'. Back in February, I broke up with Google Reader and had to do this myself. There were a number of steps, but its quite simple and well worth the switch!!

How to import your Google Reader feed into Bloglovin': 

1. If you haven't already done so, sign up and create an account with Bloglovin'. 

2. Log into your Google Reader account. 

3. In Google Reader, select "Settings" and "Reader setting" -- located near the top-right corner of your browser. 

4. Select the "Import/Export" tab, and export your information by clicking the "Download your data through takeout." 

5. Depending on your browser, a new tab may open up.

6. Select "Downloads" and download the zip file to your computer and unzip the 8 files to a convenient location on your computer. 

7. Go back into your Bloglovin account and select "Settings." 

8. Scroll down toward the bottom of the page until you see the "Import" button, click the button.

9. Select "Choose File" and find the folder of files that you downloaded. The file that you want to upload is the .xml file called "subscriptions." 

10. Select "Upload" and you're done!

Side note: when I first uploaded my .xml file, I didn't think it worked, even though it did. You may just have a to wait a few moments for your subscriptions to show up. 

ps. You can follow me here on Bloglovin' - post your link below and I’ll follow back if I don’t already!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Adios Google Reader!

"We launched Google Reader in 2005 in an effort to make it easy for people to discover and keep tabs on their favorite websites. While the product has a loyal following, over the years usage has declined. So, on July 1, 2013, we will retire Google Reader. Users and developers interested in RSS alternatives can export their data, including their subscriptions, with Google Takeout over the course of the next four months." -- via Google Blog

I'm not surprised, but it looks like google reader meets its inevitable end. Since google reader gives users the ability to friend, follow and share stories with others, I guess this means the end of Google Friend Connect (GFC) too?!!

Thankfully I saw this coming awhile ago and started using Bloglovin to follow all my favorite blogs. I actually imported all the blogs I followed via google reader into Bloglovin which made the transition really simple.

I plan to post a tutorial either tonight or tomorrow on how to do this. But in the mean time, you can follow me on Bloglovin here:

Follow on Bloglovin

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

For Bloggers // Amazing, must-have App!!

I am super excited to have this opportunity to review my new favorite app!!!

Before I tell you how amazing it is, I must admit, I was initially hesitant to purchase this app when Dana from the Wonder Forest first launched it. Not because I didn't think it was awesome, because it really is, only because I really didn't think I would use it. And the only reason I say that is because of my prior failed attempts to blog via my iPad or iPhone...! 

As I am sure all of you agree, the Blogger app for iPhone/iPad sucks balls (can I say that here?), so I don't even attempt to blog via that app. I have also tried to blog on my iPad before via google chrome,  and it has been somewhat successful - but only if I don't want to go back and add text to previously written paragraphs, etc. Needless to say, regardless of what I do or don't do, the outcome was me cursing at my iPad because I lost a post or couldn't save... you get the idea! And because of that, I gave up altogether on the idea of "blogging on the go."

Working two jobs, six days a week, soon seven for the month of April, means life is super hectic right now and I don't have tons of free time to sit on my laptop. So the idea of being able to start a blog posts either on my iPhone or my iPad, even publish them if I wanted, really appealed to me. I really don't like to bring my personal blog up on my work computer, so being able to jot a few ideas on my iPhone right into a draft post is amazing and super convenient. 

Anyways ... I am obviously writing about this awesome app because I caved, and purchased it last week. I am honestly in love with "BlogGo." Dana has done an incredible job, I am beyond amazed with her skills. Not only does she design beautiful blog templates, she also knows how to design an app!

BlogGo lets you post, edit and publish to your blogger account. The user interface is also very simple to use! If you want to learn more about the app, Dana has created a website for it with much more details and a youtube video on how to use it! I recommend watching the youtube video!

To learn more about this awesome app, head on over to!

The app is also on sale for $1.99 -- such a deal (I paid $2.99 for it).

ps. The first half of this post was created using this app! 

Monday, March 11, 2013


Over the weekend, I reached 400 GFC followers!!! I just wanted to say thank you to all my lovely readers for helping me accomplish this. Along the way, I have met some incredible ladies and I am so grateful to all of you! 

I also wanted to give a special shout-out to my 400th follower ...

... and my newest sponsor >>> Heather from Fiery and Opinionated.

If you aren't already following Heather, please head over to her blog and say hello!

Happy Monday! Hope everyone has a fabulous week!! =]

For Bloggers // Add a Social Feed to your Blog.

I just discovered this fabulous new website, Tint via Fashion, Beauty, etc. It's been around for awhile, but its new to me (and maybe to you too)! I thought it was a neat feature to add to my blog, so I wanted to share some information with you all about this fabulous service.

Tint is a simple tool that lets you create beautiful and engaging social hubs on your blog. For example, you can aggregate from your blog's facebook page feed, twitter, instagram, pinterest and much more. It's also free to sign-up! 

If you want to see it in action, you can check out my "socially" page on my blog. It's also a great way to increase traffic to your social media sites. 

How to add Tint to your blogger blog:

1. Visit the Tint website:

2. Click the "Sign Up" link and create an account. 

3. After creating an account, you will want to "add a tint." 

4. Give your tint a name, such as your blog name, and connect your social networks. After connecting your social networks, you can can personalize and moderate your social feed. I change the color of the social icons to the same pink color to match my blog.

5. Once you are ready, select "embed," choose your platform and configure how your want your feed to appear on your blog page using the tint tool. I created a new page on my blog just for this social feed; I also spent a few minutes playing around with this step because I wanted to see how it looked on my blog. For example, I only used a height of 1000 px, width of 550 px and 4 columns.

6. Copy and paste the code into you're blog page's html, save and publish! 

What do you think about this tool? Will you add it to your blog? Hopefully I haven't confused you too much! If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask me! 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Sponsor Spotlight.

"I'm Kelly! That big headed blonde girl you see right there! I'm not a mom, I'm no where near being religious, and I'm not married (though I do have a pretty handsome fella), but I like to blog. I like to pretend I can take artsy fartsy pictures when in reality they look like my cat took them. I'm just a girl growing up into a woman and feel the need to write about it online. Stop on by! "

"I'm a 20-something college student, trying to make my way to the "real" world, and hoping something will be there waiting for me when I make it. I've loved writing since I could take a pencil to paper, photography since my mom handed me my first Polaroid, and the Beatles since my dad introduced me to Yellow Submarine. Good Day Sunshine is a collection of essays, stories, and photographs inspired by life, The Beatles, and the sunshine. It's my life, the best I know how to write it."

"Hey ya'll! My name is Jenni and I blog over at A Dash of Sunshine! I love reality TV, the Florida sunshine, and some good food! Over on the blog I like to talk about our every day life, show you guys pictures of the cutest almost-3 year old ever, and share recipes that I am trying out! "

Blog // Twitter // Pinterest // Instagram

"My name is Laurie Brotherton & I blog over at The Brotherton's. My better half is Mitch. We are parents to two happy fur-babies -- Kodi & Maggie. We are a newly formed family who enjoy the company of others, spend many hours outdoors, takes lots of pictures, we're wannabe parents, & we occasionally take part in PDA {what can we say -- we're in love.} I LOVE meeting new inspiring & uplifting people through this blog. It's a whole different world that I never expected to be a part of. I'm so glad I discovered it. We'd love for you to follow along on this crazy journey called marriage."

"I blog about marriage, living in England, and anything else I feel like. My husband and I live in a small town by the sea, and I love it there, so I take far too many pictures of the seaside. I like keeping a record of the things I do so that I have something to look back on once we've moved on, so I like to write about all the little things we do."

Blog // Twitter // Pinterest // Instagram

"Riss Home Design is a blog I started with my boyfriend after we bought our first home together. Our names are Rissa and Charlie, and we first started blogging to share updates on our home and projects with friends and family, but decided we'd love to share with everyone, not just people we know! We blog about home renovations and decoration, DIY projects, recipes, and about our lives in general. We're a laid back couple who love to laugh, cook and find affordable products for our home and affordable ways to create projects as well. Come get to know us!"

Blog // Twitter // Pinterest // Instagram

"Hi Life Unpublished readers! My name is Britta and my blog is The Boots Parade. Over there you'll see posts all about my life in Costa Rica! I write about my life as an English teacher, my life in this country, my adorable puppy Rocco, and all the little adventures I have as an expat. I hope you will come by and say hello!"

Saturday, March 9, 2013

100 Instagram Followers!!

I finally reached 100 followers on instagram this evening!! Super excited. 

Hope everyone is having a lovely weekend. The weather out here is a little bit nippy but absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately, its supposed to start raining again tomorrow...

(Leave a comment with your instagram account and I will follow you back)

This Week for Dinner.

The biggest change we have made to our daily dinner menu is incorporating a green salad with almost each meal. The only catch is that when we do that, we eat less of the main course and have more leftovers to eat up. 

Last weekend, for example, I made a large batch of spaghetti sauce. I normally don't like to freeze sauces, I am not too sure why, but decided it would be best that I freeze half of it, otherwise we would be eating pasta and salad all week. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE pasta, but I do get tired of eating the same meal over and over again. 

+ Monday: Leftovers: Spaghetti.

+ Tuesday: Leftovers: Spaghetti.

+ Wednesday: Butter chicken & green salad. Recipe here.

+ Thursday: Leftovers: Butter chicken & salad.

+ Friday: Leftovers: Butter chicken

+ Saturday: Mac and Cheese & salad.

+ Sunday: Dine out: Pub food. 

I was hoping to try a new recipe that I found the other day, but we still have lots of butter chicken and salad to eat up that it didn't make sense to cook another feast. Maybe next week!! Did you try any new recipes this past week? 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Friday's Letters.

Dear weather, you've been so-so all week, but today, BEAUTIFUL. It's days like today that I love living in beautiful British Columbia. Dear exercise, you've kicked my butt this week. Its been a tough transition, but I think we're doing good! However, my thighs and calves are beyond sore and there is ZERO chance I will be attempting another day at the 30 Day Shred until at least Sunday. Dear boyfriend, I am really enjoying our go to bed at 10:00 pm and wake up at 7:00 am routine. I am feeling 100x more productive each day! Dear new diet, I think I will keep you around for awhile. I am enjoying eating an half an apple every morning (it's nice to share half with the bf) and salad with dinner. I am also loving these new breakfast smoothies. Yum! Dear Dana at the Wonder Forest, thank you, thank you, thank you for the critique on my blog design. That was so very amazing of you to offer your critique to everyone who left a comment on your facebook! You rock! Dear iPhone, I know I have said this before, but I am sooo happy that I made the switch a few months back. I honestly don't know what I would do without you, and instagram